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LA Pride 2018
Photograph: Courtesy CC/Flickr/dvsross

LA Pride 2018 attracted a record number of attendees

Michael Juliano
Written by
Michael Juliano

Thousands of Angelenos and out-of-towners took to the streets in West Hollywood on Sunday for the annual LA Pride Parade.

The signature event in a weekend full of LGBTQ celebrations, the annual tradition—back to a parade format after last year’s Resist March—made its way along Santa Monica Boulevard as around 170,000 participants and spectators celebrated inclusiveness, tolerance and this year’s theme, “just be.”

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On the ticketed festival side, organizer Christopher Street West sold out the LA Pride Festival for the first time in its 40-year history, with around 40,000 attendees flocking to stages and pop-ups along the streets near West Hollywood Park. That’s great, right? Well, not if you were one of the hopeful attendees—including existing ticket holders—who were turned away at the gates on Saturday night due to the event hitting capacity.

Thank you to all who came out to the first day of the 2018 LA Pride Festival yesterday. We are sorry and would like to apologize to everyone who could not get in after the venue hit capacity. Those with tickets or pre-purchased wristbands for Saturday - that were never scanned at the gate - can exchange an unused Saturday ticket for a free Sunday ticket at the Festival Box Office or can request a refund by emailing See Tickets or calling 323.908.0607. We know that we made mistakes and we are sorry. Yes, we oversold tickets and we accept responsibility for all the issues that caused at the door. We sell more tickets than the venue can hold for two reasons: 1) We want as many people as possible to enjoy the Festival and to support our community partners exhibiting there (as a non-profit organization, all proceeds from the Festival go to support the LGBTQ+ community); and 2) Festival attendees have traditionally come and gone throughout the day, which has allowed us to flow through more attendees over the course of the day or night without hitting venue capacity. Yesterday, however, many attendees arrived early and stayed all day. This has never happened before. We were not prepared for it. We are truly sorry. This will be fixed next year. #JUSTBE #LAPride #Pride2018

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With sets from Kehlani, Tove Lo and Icona Pop, the event seemed to deliver desirable acts without the blowback from 2016’s ill-fated attempt at turning the ticketed event into a higher-priced music festival. The event event featured a surprise appearance from Christina Aguilera during Sunday’s drag competition.

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