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AIDS Walk Los Angeles draws thousands of supporters

Thousands of people filled the streets of West Hollywood on Sunday for the 29th annual AIDS Walk.
October 13, 2013 12:00:00 AM PDT
Thousands of people filled the streets of West Hollywood Sunday in honor of Southern California's largest AIDS fundraiser.

Angelenos participated in the 29th annual AIDS Walk Los Angeles at the West Hollywood Park to raise money for those affected by HIV and AIDS.

The six-mile trek began at 10 a.m. and led participants through West Hollywood and the Fairfax district to raise funds for AIDS Project Los Angeles.

The opening ceremony began at 9:15 a.m. and included a speech by West Hollywood Mayor Abbe Land on the state of HIV and AIDS in Los Angeles County.

Several celebrities were in also attendance, including Wayne Brady, Peter Gallagher and Richard Simmons.

Nearly 25,000 people took part in the walk last year, raising nearly $3 million.

The event has been going strong for 29 years since 1985. Since its inception, the event has raised more than $75 million for HIV/AIDS prevention, treatment and advocacy programs.

AIDS Walk Los Angeles is the largest AIDS fundraising event in California. It is reported that 60,000 people in Los Angeles County alone are living with the disease. Twenty percent of the reported 60,000 aren't aware of their condition. According to organizers, an average of seven Angelenos are infected with HIV every day.

The event is backed by AIDS Project Los Angeles, which helps to provide vital services and education programs to thousands living with HIV/AIDS in Los Angeles. The money raised from the event helps treat as many as 11,000 AIDS patients locally.

Street closures for AIDS Walk Los Angeles

Participants walked 10 kilometers, heading east on Santa Monica Boulevard, south on La Cienega Boulevard, east on Melrose Avenue, south on La Brea Avenue, west on Beverly Boulevard, then north on San Vicente Boulevard and back to the park. The participating streets were set to be closed off-and-on all day to traffic in both directions Sunday.

Officials advised drivers to expect traffic delays. Santa Monica Boulevard reopened to all traffic at 1 p.m. La Cienega Boulevard opened at 1:30 p.m. La Brea Avenue and Beverly Boulevard reopened to all traffic at 3 p.m.

More detailed information on the marathon route and streets closures can be found on www.aidswalk.net.

ABC7 is a proud sponsor of the event for the second time this year.

Eyewitness News anchor Ellen Leyva served as mistress of ceremonies and leading the ABC7 team.

You can help our efforts to support AIDS Walk Los Angeles at http://abc7.la/18ZJPHd .


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