Wave Wire Services
LOS ANGELES — After a two-year hiatus due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the LA Pride Parade made a festive return June 12, drawing thousands of people to its new route in Hollywood.
The parade began at Hollywood and Cahuenga boulevards before moving west on Hollywood, south on Highland Avenue and east on Sunset Boulevard back to Cahuenga.
Following the parade, Pride Village was open on Hollywood Boulevard, featuring sponsor tents, beverages, carnival attractions, vendors, performances and a mobile clinic from Equality California offering COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters.
Paula Abdul served as icon grand marshal, and other notable participants included celebrity grand marshal Mark Indelicato of “Ugly Betty” and “Hacks,” and community grand marshal Sir Lady Java.
“My heart is full. Thanks to all of the Angelenos who showed up to support LAPride and our LGBT community. We are one,” tweeted Kristin Crowley, the first openly gay chief of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
The parade, produced by Christopher Street West, has been described as the second-largest pride parade in the nation. Usually taking place in West Hollywood, the parade was canceled in 2020, in what would have been its 50th anniversary, because of COVID-19 precautions. The parade was canceled again in 2021 because of COVID-19 concerns.
“We considered many options for the parade, both traditional and progressive,” Gerald Garth, vice president of Christopher Street West programs and initiatives, said in February’s announcement about the location change. “Hollywood as the original historical location for the first Los Angeles protest 50 years ago was a natural choice to honor what Pride really means and where Pride will go in the future.
West Hollywood conducted its own Pride Parade June 5.