You want to attend an L.A. gay pride-related event that has more substance than other things happening around town?
Go to the always inspiring closing ceremony of the 2013 AIDS/LifeCycle in West Los Angeles, where nearly 2,200 bicyclists and 550 volunteer roadies will arrive after trekking 545 miles between San Francisco and L.A. to raise more than $13 million for AIDS-related services in both cities.
The AIDS/LifeCycle kicked off last Sunday in San Francisco, and the bicyclists have been on the road ever since. They've not only showed a lot of heart and true grit the past several days for a meaningful cause, but they've raised tons of money and awareness for HIV/AIDS programs.
The tens of millions will help fund HIV/AIDS-related services provided by the L.A. Gay & Lesbian Center and San Francisco AIDS Foundation.
Since it started in 2001, AIDS/LifeCycle has raised more than $100 million, has brought true community and a sense of purpose into the lives of those participating in the event, has helped educate countless numbers of people about HIV/AIDS, and has been a creative and inspiring way for people to volunteer their time and get involved in a worthy cause that's so important to the LGBT community.
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It's basically the antithesis of L.A.'s gay pride parade, which we wrote about yesterday: "Is L.A. Gay Pride an Outdated, Adolescent Mess?"
We attended the closing ceremony a few years ago and couldn't help but be moved by the passion and dedication of the bicyclists and their supporters. The participants range from age 82 to 18 and 44 states and 18 countries will be represented.
The closing ceremony will take place at 3:30 p.m. on Saturday, June 8, at the V.A. Center in West L.A. at 11301 Wilshire Boulevard.