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Lavender lights to shine on City Hall for LGBT Heritage Month


This post has been changed. Please see note below.

The city of Los Angeles marked its first Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender Heritage Month with rainbow-colored balloons outside City Hall.

This year, officials will use lavender lights.

Beginning Wednesday night, the purple-hued lights will shine on City Hall after dark, Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa's office announced. The pylons at Los Angeles International Airport have glowed lavender since the beginning of the month and will continue to do so until Friday.

The lights are meant to symbolize the "struggles and progress" of the LGBT community, the mayor's office said.

June marks LGBT Heritage Month in Los Angeles. In a ceremony marking the designation last year, Villaraigosa and other city officials talked about gay rights, gay representation on the council, AIDS and other LGBT-related issues. 

"It's all about civil and human rights, which we don't have," Bill Rosendahl, the first openly gay candidate to run for and be elected to the City Council, told the crowd gathered in front of City Hall last year. "We still fight."

The lavender lights will flicker on the same day President Obama arrives in Los Angeles for a two-day meet-and-greet with LGBT supporters -- he'll attend the LGBT Leadership Council's 2012 gala and the home of "Glee" creator Ryan Murphy and his fiance, David Miller.

[Updated at 6:18 p.m.: A Villaraigosa spokeswoman initially called it a "happy" coincidence the lights would turn on the same day President Barack Obama arrived for a two-day stay in L.A. where he will meet with LGBT supporters, but later said the lighting was intended to align with Obama's visit.


City Hall will be lit Wednesday "in part to thank President Obama for his strong stand on marriage equality and to welcome him to the City of Los Angeles," spokeswoman Amanda Parsons said.] 


The lights will shine on City Hall until June 22.


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— Kate Mather


Photo: Theresa Clark, left, and Kristi Nielson march on Santa Monica Boulevard in West Hollywood in June 2011 for the L.A. Pride parade. Credit: Gary Friedman/Los Angeles Times

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