On Sunday, October 16, 2011, an expected 30,000 walkers and dozens of celebrities and elected officials will gather in West Hollywood Park for the 27th annual AIDS Walk Los Angeles, the largest event of its kind, benefiting AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA) and more than 20 other. Los Angeles County AIDS service organizations. This past June marked 30 years since HIV was first identified – a discovery that took place in Los Angeles.
Event proceeds fund an array of HIV/AIDS care and treatment programs in Los Angeles to provide critical health and social services to the 63,000 Angelenos living with the disease, along with HIV prevention and advocacy efforts aimed at ending the epidemic.
“AIDS Walk Los Angeles is one of the biggest, most diverse, and highly anticipated annual events in Los Angeles,” says APLA Executive Director Craig E. Thompson. “Last year, a passionate crowd of 30,000 walkers and 2,500 volunteers raised more than $2.8 million for HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment, and advocacy programs.” Since its inception, the event has raised more than $69 million to fight the disease in Los Angeles County, and the multi-city AIDS Walk movement has raised more than a half-billion nationwide.
Event attendees include a range of celebrity and VIP guests from the entertainment community. Past guests include Christine Baranski, Wayne Brady, Sandra Bullock, Drew Carey, Aaron Carter, Charlie Carver, Candis Cayne, Wilson Cruz, Alan Cumming, Jamie Lee Curtis, Willem Dafoe, Ted Danson, Whoopi Goldberg, Kelsey Grammer, Bob Harper, Teri Hatcher, Jennifer Holliday, Felicity Huffman, David Hyde-Pierce, La Toya Jackson, Elton John, Nathan Lane, Angela Lansbury, John Lithgow, Madonna, Ann-Margaret, Mary-Louise Parker, Sarah Jessica Parker, Pauley Perrette, Ryan Seacrest, George Takei, Jason Thompson, and Maiara Walsh. Previous attending Los Angeles Mayors include Tom Bradley, James Kahn, and Antonio Villaraigosa. This year’s announced guests include Villaraigosa, along with Drew Carey, Cloris Leachman, Dot Marie Jones, Conchatta Ferrel, Pauley Perrette, and Louis Van Amstel.
“AIDS Walk Los Angeles is a vibrant public-private partnership, driven by the commitment of concerned Angelenos, community organizations, schools, corporations, celebrities, and elected officials,” Thompson adds.
This year’s marketing campaign once again acknowledges the extraordinary work of thousands of dedicated participants as it continues to reinvigorate the public’s attention to the HIV/AIDS crisis. Under the heading, “I Walk…” the artwork features photographs of a spectrum of Angelenos wearing white T-shirts that illustrate each of their personal relationships with the HIV/AIDS crisis in Los Angeles County. Since its start, the epidemic has taken more than 32,000 lives in L.A.
The 10k (6.2 mile) AIDS Walk Los Angeles route begins and ends in West Hollywood Park, and the crowd will take to the streets of West Hollywood and Los Angeles. Media check-in opens at 8:00 a.m., and the opening ceremony begins at 9:15 a.m. To reserve a press slot for celebrity photo and interview access, contact the media representatives listed at top.
About AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA): AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA), one of the largest nonprofit AIDS service organizations in the United States, provides bilingual direct services, prevention education, and leadership on HIV/AIDS-related policy and legislation. With more than 26 years of service, APLA is a community-based, volunteer-supported organization with local, national, and global reach. For more information, visit apla.org.
About AIDS Walk Los Angeles: Since 1985, AIDS Walk Los Angeles has raised more than $69 million for HIV programs and services throughout Los Angeles County, and has grown into one of the largest AIDS fundraising events in the country. In 2010 alone, 30,000 participants, many of whom were members of 1,600 corporate and community teams, raised nearly $3 million for AIDS Project Los Angeles and 20 other AIDS service organizations. For more information, visit aidswalk.net.
About MZA Events: AIDS Walk Los Angeles was founded in 1985 by Craig R. Miller and his organization of activists, MZA Events. Miller is the AIDS Walk originator and has produced hundreds of public service campaigns and fundraising events, generating more than $359 million for major AIDS organizations throughout the country. For more information, please visit mzaevents.com.