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Gay Pride Breaks Attendance Records

Over 400,000 people attend the parade on Sunday and 45,000 attend the two-day festival according to figures released by Christopher Street West.

Last weekend’s gay pride festival broke attendance record. Over 400,000 people attended the parade on Sunday and 45,000 attended the two-day festival.

That’s what Christopher Street West, the non-profit which produces the parade and festival, said in a press release today.

"We are thrilled that this year LA PRIDE exceeded our wildest imaginations in terms of enthusiasm, new features, corporate sponsorships and attendees," said Rodney Scott, board president of Christopher Street West, in a press statement. "Whether guests were enjoying powerhouse concerts by Lil' Kim, Karmin and Ivy Queen, splashing around in SummerTramp, dancing in Latino Carnival, visiting Erotic City or laughing with the very funny Fortune Feimster, everyone had a blast!"

Scott credited the expanded parkland area in West Hollywood Park, where the event was held, as a contributing factor in the increased attendance. The newly opened park now has an additional 2.5 acres of green space.

For the previous three years while the new West Hollywood Library was under construction, the amount of park space available for the festival was limited, causing many to complain about not having enough elbow room.

But with the expanded park, the festival was able to add the Summer Tramp water park area as well as several dance pavilions.

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RTL June 15, 2012 at 01:03 AM
Good, now please clean up the dirt mess that Weho Park has become since the newly planted grass was destroyed by the event. The city should use the Pride-generated funds to fence-off the park and plant high quality sod that you would actually want to sit on. Weho Park should have been sodded AFTER the event, not before it. And next time the city wants to waste money on a rainbow crosswalk that becomes a faded eyesore within days, perhaps commission someone to produce abstract neon artwork w/ Pride colors at SMB and San Vicente that could tie in with the City Lights theme and last much longer. Congrats to the city for increasing its Pride attendance.
Paul June 15, 2012 at 01:41 AM
I couldn't agree more with RTL. Made me ill to see the new remodeled park which looked so beautiful days ago, destroyed by the gay pride festival. I originally thought painting the side walk was a good idea and that it should remain all year around. I was not taking into consideration it would fade so quickly. Next year they need to get someone in the community to do that rather the city $$$ on something unnecessary. West Hollywood spends, spends, spends while the state of California can barely pay the bills. A lot of special programs are being cut from from the budget yet West Hollywood can waste money on nonsense.
Tyler June 15, 2012 at 05:06 AM
I found the Pride to be trashy and ghetto. As I left I couldn't believe how destroyed the park was. People don't care. They were there to get drunk and had nothing else better to do.
me June 15, 2012 at 06:44 AM
did the city put the $13,000 crosswalk painting out to bid???....or did they give that huge stash to a insider-crony?....i'm dying to know....plus, couldn't the colors have been sealed with some type of clear toxic goo so the colors would stay bright?....i would've done it for $2,000
me June 15, 2012 at 06:47 AM
i'm sure the message rodney scott really wanted to relay to us is that CSW would have even MORE money to give to their charities due to higher attendance this year, right???.....let's keep an eye or two on that one
Insider June 15, 2012 at 02:10 PM
Does anyone really believe 400,000 people watched the parade? It doesn't pass the "smell test."
Todd Bianco June 15, 2012 at 03:16 PM
I don't buy the 400,000 number for the parade alone. I believe it for the entire weekend, but not to watch the parade. I think the US Parks Dept stopped making estimates of crowds at demonstrations and marches in DC because it was nearly impossible to make an accurate estimate. I drove by West Hollywood Park this morning. The rain birds were on watering the dust into mud. What the City should have done is asked CSW to pay for fake grass over the dirt and then when the festival was over, they could plant real grass. I hope that some of the hundreds of thousands of dollars bilked from festival goers paying $20 each to attend can be rerouted to the City to replace the dead grass in the park. The parade was pretty predictable. I had it on TV in the background and didn't think much was different. I still wish that the whole thing would be reformatted. We need much better entertainment. The brand new WeHo Library parking garage should be open for the festival and parade. Close down SMB, or portions there of for the weekend to make it all pedestrian friendly. The festival should be free, with costs underwritten by real sponsors. And I'd like to see a couple of brief political elements return to the weekend, complete with brief speeches from local (good luck finding one) or national leaders (LGBT or straight allies). Give the media a real sound bite rather than the standard shots of leather men, go-go boys or a "dyke on a bike." Good luck with CSW financial transparency!
Allen June 15, 2012 at 05:27 PM
If one looks back every year for the last 10, they always say 400,000 show up. Funny how the number never goes up or down and there has never been nor will there ever be 400,000. More like 150,000 for the festival both days & maybe 75,000-Sunday Parade Hyped numbers always look good. CSW brings in from the weekend anywhere from $1.2 million to $1.5 million and this is split between Beverage sales, Ticket sales & Sponsorship money. The financials are on their site.
Insider June 15, 2012 at 05:29 PM
If you look at the parade route and count the number of city blocks, there are 14 blocks from start to finish. (To get to this number, I took out Larrabee and Hilldale to condense into equal sized blocks.) That means there were an average of 28,500 people per block. If they lined both sides of the street, then there were 14,250 people on both sides of the street, per city block. I must be wrong. The route is 1.3 miles. That's 6864 feet beginning to end. 400,000 people would be 29 per foot along both sides of the route. I must have made a mistake.
Manny June 15, 2012 at 05:51 PM
Ha!....nicely done...I think there were more people at the Abby than at the parade.
scott ferguson June 15, 2012 at 06:07 PM
More ways to see how silly 400,000 is - At most half of WeHo saw any of the parade - that's 18,000 people. Throw in those close enough to walk, in-town already visitors, maybe 30,000 generously. Of the remaining 370,000, how many came by bus, this being LA? Maybe 70,000? That leaves 300,000. Say there were three people per car on average - That's 100,000 cars that had to find parking in or near the city. That's probably 5 times more than we can handle.
90069 June 15, 2012 at 06:29 PM
This year's pride was the best I have been to. Kudos to the City and CSW for stepping up its game. Even though much more could be done to make the event grander or more accomodating to all GLBT and allies whom want to celebrate their pride and history. I do not agree with comments about torn up grass. We just hosted one of the West Coasts premier entertainment events. Get over it. The grass will grow back. Thank God we have a City that understand the urgency and importance of pride and does not nitpick the event to death like some of these posters would love to see. Let's make LA Pride 2013 even bigger and better!
jimmy palmieri June 15, 2012 at 07:15 PM
450 K? really?.........REALLY?
jimmy palmieri June 16, 2012 at 07:45 AM
I'M SO HAPPY FOR THIS BANNER YEAR! THIS MEANS THERE ARE MORE RESOURCES AND NO EXCUSES FOR LESS PASSES FOR MEMBERS OF THE NON PROFITS AND PROVIDING AGENCIES AND MORE RESOURCES FOR A DECENT SOBER AREA THAT HAS VISIBILITY! THIS IS LIKE A BLESSING FOR CSW AND THE COMMUNITY THEY SERVE!
Paul June 18, 2012 at 04:01 PM
I'm not sure there stats are so accurate? They sell tickets at the festival so they could keep track that way but people who attend the parade? It's free. Nobody goes around counting people. These could be stats they just throw out there with no actual data to support the number. It's a lot of people, PERIOD! Why put a number out there that can easily be disputed.
scott ferguson June 18, 2012 at 04:48 PM
It's just endemic in this sort of enterprise. Every year we hear reports of a million people or more at Times Square for New Year's Eve. That probably is 10 times as many people that could be squeezed on to the streets and sidewalks in the area. Years ago, when I lived in Chicago, Pope John Paul II celebrated a mass in Grant Park. The media went with the police estimate of over a million people. The Chicago Sun-Times used an overhead photo to analyze - both by counting the people and estimating body mass vs area filled - and came up, as I recall, around 125,000 people. Exaggerating turnouts is done for ego, for publicity, to justify budgets (particularly police and other relevant agencies). It goes on all the time, to the extent that to not do it is to damage one's event. (Once one starts, then changes to being accurate, it looks like an event has suffered a collosal failure).
Nunyer Binnis June 20, 2012 at 10:16 PM
Pride goes before destruction.
Nunyer Binnis June 20, 2012 at 10:17 PM
Why are you shouting? We're right here.

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