Christopher Street West is Moving the LA Pride Parade and Festival Out of West Hollywood

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LA Pride in West Hollywood - Photo by Alan Light

Christopher Street West (CSW) the non-profit organization that produces and organizes the LA Pride parade and festival in the City of West Hollywood has sent a letter of intent to move the LA Pride events out of the City of West Hollywood.

The CSW Board of Directors sent a brief letter of intent to the West Hollywood City Council announcing their move this morning. The Board cites construction at West Hollywood Park and the changing demographics of the Greater Los Angeles Area among the reasons LA Pride will no longer take place in West Hollywood. The letter does not say where CSW intends to host LA Pride next year.

The letter of intent obtained at WEHO TIMES reads as follows:

To The West Hollywood City Council, and other concerned parties:

This year, Christopher Street West and LA Pride celebrate our 50th anniversary of organizing,  honoring, and bringing together the LGBTQIA+ community of Greater Los Angeles and beyond. As our  non-profit organization continues to evolve and grow, we want to inform you of our intention to move  the LA Pride Parade and Festival out of West Hollywood in 2021. 

The Board of Directors has decided to take this approach for several reasons. These include  construction in West Hollywood Park, the changing demographics of Greater Los Angeles, our  commitment to being responsive to the LGBTQIA+ community’s needs, and our allyship and  collaboration with other movements for social change. 

We are grateful to the City of West Hollywood for our many years of partnership and collaboration in  presenting LA Pride. West Hollywood has been a successful home for the parade and festival,  providing millions with a unique and incredible experience centered in this city. The community we  serve and our organization have grown during our collaborations with West Hollywood, and we have  been grateful to support the city and its business community by bringing hundreds of thousands of  diverse visitors to the city and highlighting West Hollywood on the world stage.  

What began in 1970 as the first legally permitted parade of its kind, LA Pride has become a powerful  and globally-recognized symbol of the LGBTQIA+ movement, and we look forward to maintaining  positive relationships with the City of West Hollywood as our programming evolves. While the  locations of our activities may change, we remain excited to explore opportunities for collaboration in  2021 and beyond, and hope West Hollywood can be part of a more diversified celebration throughout  Greater Los Angeles.  On behalf of the Board of Directors and the communities we have served for 50 years, we thank you  for your support. 

Sincerely, Christopher Street West, Board Of Directors 

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“This morning’s letter from Christopher Street West to the City of West Hollywood’s City Council stated CSW’s intention to move the LA Pride Parade and Festival out of West Hollywood next year, ” West Hollywood Mayor Lindsey Horvath told WEHO TIMES. “I wish CSW the very best in its future efforts. For decades, the City of West Hollywood and CSW have enjoyed an incredible partnership and, on a personal note, I will treasure the memories I have made celebrating Pride with CSW within our City. The City of West Hollywood remains the heart of the region’s LGBTQ community and we take Pride in celebrating each and every day, year-round.”

The move will undoubtedly impact the West Hollywood economy. A study by Beacon Economics reports in 2019 that CSW expenditures were a significant contributor to the regional and West Hollywood economy directly. CSW spent nearly $1.9 million in Los Angeles County, of which $120,340 was in West Hollywood and $1.2 million was in the City of Los Angeles. Expenses were for equipment rental, security, advertising, stages, sanitation, lighting, labor, site preparation and site cleanup, among others. As an example, Christopher Street West spent almost $200,000 on safety and security for the event and partnered with Verizon Wireless to provide a mobile cell tower roughly valued at $150,000. Because this report quantifies only the economic impact of the event on the local economy, expenditures outside Los Angeles County, such as fees paid to artists, were excluded. Yet to the extent that some of these excluded expenditures would have a local impact, Christopher Street West’s portion of the overall economic impact represents a conservative estimate.

The City of West Hollywood has been hosting the LA Pride Parade and festival since 1971.

Editor’s note: This piece was updated to include Mayor Horvath’s quote. 

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wehogaysbelike
wehogaysbelike
3 months ago

Can’t picture pride outside of weho. People don’t like CSW. The organization is a mess. Too much special interest for a none profit. This move is crazy.

Tom
Tom
3 months ago

Well, that’s special. Frankly I think we can do without it. The festival was simply a money grab that was not affordable to most of the local LGBTQIA+ people who they were supposed to celebrate. Most of the money spent by CSW was for supporting and cleaning up after the festival and street closures after the parade. This years (non-CSW) parade seemed far more in keeping with the spirit of the original 50 years ago. Wherever CSW decides to have it’s festival, I am sure that Gay Pride will still be celebrated in the bars, restaurants, coffee houses, and backyards… Read more »

wehogaysbelike
wehogaysbelike
3 months ago
Reply to  Tom

The VIP section was a turnoff for me. That’s when I stopped going. To charge the prices they were charging and then to charge more to keep the better half separate from the ‘general’ public was pretty gross. Good luck with the move. Let’s take Pride back in weho