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Duke Mason Announces His Run For West Hollywood City Council

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With the posting of a video on his YouTube channel, Duke Mason has officially thrown his hat in the ring for a West Hollywood City Council seat. In the new clip, Mason, the openly gay son of singer Belinda Carlisle, points to the increase in the city's rental prices (which are driving out many of the people who initially helped shape West Hollywood's identity) as just one of the motivating forces behind his run.

Says Mason in the video:

"I am grateful to be a resident of West Hollywood. We should celebrate our city's legacy. But we also need to return to our roots and use that activist spirit to build for ourselves, for our future and for the next generation. We're still West Hollywood: the same West Hollywood with the audacity to stand up, to speak out and to fight for what we believe in. We are good but we can be great again. We can be proud again."

Mason first filed papers for a possible run in July.

You can contribute to the campaign on his official website here.

Continue reading "Duke Mason Announces His Run For West Hollywood City Council" »


City of West Hollywood Incorporates Rainbow Into its New Flag

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Following the removal of the Gay Pride flag from the roof of West Hollywood City Hall last month amid a firestorm of criticism, the city has voted to incorporate rainbow colors into its new flag, the L.A. Times reports:

“This has been a very exciting debate,” said Mayor Pro Tem John D’Amico, who is gay. “I think flying a rainbow flag at City Hall is perhaps not as interesting as flying the City of West Hollywood adopted flag that has the rainbow on it. There’s a pedigree there, there’s a history.”

The rainbow flag was removed in January after an earlier unanimous vote by the council to maintain the city’s practice of displaying only the United States, California and city flags on public facilities. At one meeting, Councilman John Duran, who is gay, said the city “belongs to all of us” and is "not just a city of gay men."

More than 40% of West Hollywood’s residents identify themselves as gay or lesbian, according to city surveys, and four of the five council members are gay men.


Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Lucas and David

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A surprise birthday party in West Hollywood turns out to be something else entirely.

The couple writes:

What do you do when you want to give your boyfriend the surprise of his life? If you're Lucas, you just have the police shut down a major city street, get Step Up star Briana Evigan and a bunch of other hot dancers to shake their booties, and make sure all of your friends are standing by with cameras and kleenex. No video could possibly capture the magic we all felt that night, but this one sure does a damned good job!

Watch, AFTER THE JUMP...

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Don't miss our other recent gay wedding and proposal videos...
Gay Wedding Video of the Day: Jonathan and Dwayne [tlrd]
Gay Marriage Flash Mob Proposal of the Day: Patrick and Mike [tlrd]
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Kevin and RJ [tlrd]
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Harry and Lance's '99 Red Balloons' flash mob [tlrd]
Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: IL Rep. Sam Yingling and Lowell Jaffe [tlrd]

Continue reading "Gay Marriage Proposal of the Day: Lucas and David" »


Rainbow Flag Removed from Top of West Hollywood City Hall

The rainbow flag has been removed from the top of West Hollywood City Hall after months of debate, the L.A. Times reports:

RainbowAbout 40% of West Hollywood’s population identifies as gay or lesbian, according to city surveys. There are rainbow-colored crosswalks at Santa Monica and San Vicente boulevards. And four of the five city council members are gay men.

But city council members in November unanimously voted to maintain the city’s practice of displaying only the United States, California and city of West Hollywood flags on public facilities.

Councilman John Duran said the city is shared by gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and heterosexual people and that the flag’s hanging above City Hall was inappropriate, even if the city was founded largely on gay rights.

West Hollywood “belongs to all of us,” Duran said at one meeting. “It’s not just a city of gay men. It belongs to heterosexual people as well, and City Hall belongs to everybody in this community, gay or straight, and let’s not ever give the impression that City Hall has become exclusive to only one part of the West Hollywood community.”

The flag has been on top of the building since June at the suggestion of resident Larry Block after a city councilman agreed with his sentiment, which he repeated to the LAT:

“West Hollywood is a beacon of hope for gays and lesbians throughout the world,” he said. “When tourists come into town, they’re so proud of the fact that we’re that special place for the LGBT community. … The rainbow flag is an inclusive symbol, not exclusive.”

Block says because Duran and Prang are running for county offices the removal of the flag was a political move.


WeHo's Infamous San Vicente Inn To Be Revamped

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Renowned hotelier Jeff Klein has purchased the San Vicente Inn in West Hollywood, WEHOville is reporting. The 26-room, clothing optional hotel has long been considered a landmark in the LA gay community. However, in recent years, its' reputation has plummeted, becoming widely viewed as dilapidated and a drug den. The presence of a drug rehabilitation facility on the premises, KLEAN, has also soured some guests on the prospect of a stay at the Inn. 

Klein, who owns the Sunset Tower Hotel in Hollywood and the City Club Hotel in New York, seems to have made this acquisition of out of love. He told WEHONEWS:

"[The San Vicente Inn is] one of the most magical, special places in all of West Hollywood, and it deserves a lot of love and attention.”

Last week, all the current residents were evicted and renovation of the hotel is already under way. Klein vows the Inn will remain gay-friendly and clothing optional. By the terms of the new lease KLEAN will also be allowed to remain.

it’s one of the most magical, special places in all of West Hollywood, and it deserves a lot of love and attention.” - See more at: http://wehonews.com/z/wehonews/archive/page.php?articleID=8010#sthash.WCY1ZbHe.dpuf
it’s one of the most magical, special places in all of West Hollywood, and it deserves a lot of love and attention.” - See more at: http://wehonews.com/z/wehonews/archive/page.php?articleID=8010#sthash.WCY1ZbHe.dpuf
it’s one of the most magical, special places in all of West Hollywood, and it deserves a lot of love and attention.” - See more at: http://wehonews.com/z/wehonews/archive/page.php?articleID=8010#sthash.WCY1ZbHe.dpuf

Gay West Hollywood Man Brain Dead from Bacterial Meningitis; Not Known if Related to Deadly NYC Outbreak

A gay West Hollywood attorney is brain dead from bacterial meningitis, the AP reports:

ShaadBrett Shaad was declared brain dead but remained on life support Friday afternoon, said Elizabeth Ashford, a spokeswoman for Shaad’s family. She declined to release further details.

West Hollywood Councilman John Duran incorrectly said he had been taken off life support earlier on Friday, the wire adds:

Duran, who saw Shaad last weekend, described the openly gay man as being “robust and healthy” prior to Monday, when he began to feel sick.

On Wednesday, he went into the emergency room. By Thursday, he was in a coma.

Tests are underway on the strain of meningitis to determine if it is related to the deadly strain in NYC, against which health officials have urged sexually active gay men to be vaccinated.

It has not been determined how Shaad contracted meningitis. Shaad's family cricized Duran after he mentioned that Shaad attended the recent White Party in Palm Springs. Shaad also recently visited an Equinox gym in WeHo, the AP adds.

Symptoms typically develop within three to seven days of exposure and can include stiff neck, fever, headache, nausea, vomiting, increased sensitivity to light and an altered mental state, often confusion.

More info on meningitis and how it is spread here at the CDC.

According to WABC: "Vaccinations are not being widely recommended in Los Angeles County. But community agencies such as the L.A. Gay and Lesbian Center are urging individuals to take precautions."

Added Duran: “We don’t want to panic people. But we learned 30 years ago the consequences of delay in the response to AIDS. We are sounding the alarm that sexually active gay men need to be aware that we have a strain of meningitis that is deadly on our hands."

Our thoughts go out to Shaad's friends and family.


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