Los Angeles AIDS walk

Approximately 30,000 people were not deterred from making it out to the 26th annual Los Angeles AIDS Walk this past Sunday in West Hollywood despite the rain.

The event could not have come at a better time with recent state HIV/AIDS budget cuts made by Governor Schwarzenegger. This year, walkers and their sponsors raised $2,878,711 to benefit the APLA, AIDS Project Los Angeles which in turn supports other community organizations.

Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and West Hollywood Mayor John Heilman kicked off the walkathon during the opening ceremony by speaking about the necessity of funds and support that the HIV/AIDS community needs. Guest appearances were made by Drew Carey, Sara Ramirez, and other celebrities. Among the 30,000 participants were church groups, schools, fraternities, and sororities.

Along the 6.2 mile route were interesting people like men dressed in drag, a group of women passing out "vegan" condoms and angry protesters just to name a few. The AIDS Walk is not only a fundraiser for a worthy cause but over the years has also become a social gathering.