Las Vegas Welcome sign and Strip marquees to turn purple for Spirit Day on October 19

Resort corridor and Fremont Street Experience unite in stand against bullying; Marquee Nightclub to host Spirit Day after-party

Seth Adam
Senior Manager of Communications, GLAAD
(646) 871-8018
adam@glaad.org

October 16, 2012

LAS VEGAS, NV – The Las Vegas Strip – including the ‘Welcome to Fabulous Las Vegas’ sign - will go purple for Spirit Day on Oct. 19, joining other iconic landmarks, celebrities and millions of Americans in a stand against bullying and to show support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth. This historic display of support was announced today by GLAAD and the R&R Partners Foundation, which organized the local effort.

Photos and video of the listed events will be available through the Las Vegas News Bureau at http://thenewsmarket.com/LVCVA

Kicking off this special day of unity at 10 a.m., the Clark County Commission and the Las Vegas City Council will present GLAAD President Herndon Graddick with a proclamation recognizing this important day at the Las Vegas sign, which will be turned purple, the color of support for Spirit Day. Following this, Caesars Entertainment, MGM Resorts International, Wynn Resorts, Las Vegas Sands Corporation, Treasure Island, The Tropicana Las Vegas and The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas will also turn their resort marquees purple along the Las Vegas Strip 11 a.m. - 11:15 a.m. and then again 10 p.m. – 10:15 p.m.

The Fremont Street Experience will also go purple for Spirit Day at 10 p.m. and again at 11 p.m., lighting its famed Viva Vision canopy, which consists of more than 12 million LED lights and spans four city blocks. Organized by The Gay and Lesbian Community Center of Southern Nevada (The Center), a meet-up for teens and young adults will take place that evening at the Fremont Street Experience.

Marquee Nightclub, located in The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, will host a Spirit Day after-party with special celebrity host NHL star Sean Avery. Guests attired in purple will receive complimentary admission and open bar 9:30-11 p.m. In 2011, Avery announced his support for marriage equality and worked to secure marriage protections for same-sex couples in the state of New York.

Other Las Vegas-area participants include Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority (LVCVA); Aid for AIDS of Nevada (AFAN); Golden Rainbow; Hilton Garden Inn; Las Vegas Chamber of Commerce; Las Vegas Pride; Nevada State Senator David Parks; QVegas; and the University of Nevada, Las Vegas (UNLV).

In addition, the Human Rights Campaign has donated several hundred tee-shirts in recognition of Spirit Day, which will be distributed to LGBT youth through The Center and other ally organizations across the valley.

Spirit Day grew out of teenager Brittany McMillan’s idea to call on her friends to wear purple to memorialize those who had lost their lives to bullying. With GLAAD’s help, Spirit Day has since garnered widespread support from celebrities, TV news and entertainment programs, corporations, organizations, schools, local communities and landmarks. Spirit Day coincides with Gay, Lesbian and Straight Education Network’s (GLSEN) Ally Week and National Bullying Prevention Month.

“By going purple for Spirit Day, millions of Americans are helping to send a clear message that no one should be bullied simply because of who they are,” said GLAAD President Herndon Graddick.

Spirit Day will also be recognized by celebrities, corporations and government entities across the country on Oct. 19.

Previously announced participants include TV icon George Takei, NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal, celebrity blogger Perez Hilton, “Glee” star Dianna Agron, star of ABC Family’s “Pretty Little Liars” Shay Mitchell, daytime talk show host of “The Wendy Williams Show” Wendy Williams, host of “Extra,”, Maria Menounos, and Nickelodeon’s Avan Jogia, who will join LGBT advocates Jordan Addison, Shane Bitney Crone, Brittany McMillan, Tiq Milan, Janet Mock, Jennifer Tyrrell, and Zach Wahls as Spirit Day Ambassadors.

Others joining the movement include hosts of “Good Morning America,” “The Talk,” “Extra,” “Watch What Happens Live,” “E! News,” and “Chelsea Lately,” who will wear purple on air, as well as celebrities including Chaz Bono, Fran Drescher, the band Fun, Paris Hilton, Sir Ian McKellen, Joel McHale and DJ Pauly D.

The Los Angeles Unified School District (LAUSD), the nation’s second largest school district, will participate by sharing information about Spirit Day with students on its website and through its social media channels.

AMC Entertainment, American Airlines, American Apparel, AT&T, atelier-lb, Caesars Foundation, Carat, Citi, Comcast, CreagerCole Communications, Delta Air Lines, Draftfcb, Digitas, Ernst & Young, Facebook, Hewlett-Packard Company, Hyatt, Johnnye’s East Texas Soul, LBNY, Leo Burnett Business, The McGraw-Hill Companies, Marquee Las Vegas, MediaVest, MetLife, MSL New York, Mobli, NBCUniversal, Nielsen, Omnicom Group, PepsiCo, Publicis Groupe, Publicis Kaplan Thaler, PwC, Saatchi & Saatchi, Southern California Edison, StumbleUpon, Thomson Reuters, Toyota Financial Services, tumblr, Viacom, Warner Bros., Wells Fargo, Yahoo! and Zenith Optimedia will also participate in Spirit Day. Corporate efforts on behalf of Spirit Day include distributing information to employees about wearing purple and/or turning their logos purple on Oct. 19.

Joining Las Vegas, other national landmarks that will take part in Spirit Day include the Reuters sign in Times Square, the New York Stock Exchange, Charlotte’s Duke Energy Tower, the Los Angeles International Airport and JFK International Airport.

National sports leagues including the National Basketball Association (NBA) and Women’s National Basketball Association (WNBA), Major League Soccer and World Wrestling Entertainment (WWE) will also participate.

Local and national groups and organizations including All Out; American Federation of Teachers; Athlete Ally; Bienestar; the BULLY Project; Campus Pride; Center Link; Circle of Voices; Courage Campaign; Empire State Pride Agenda; Equality Florida; Equality Illinois; Equality Maryland; Equality Matters; Equality Michigan; the Equality Network; Equality North Carolina; Equality Ohio; Equality Texas; Equality Utah; Fair Wisconsin; FALGBT; Familia es Familia; Forty to None Project; Forum for Equality; Freedom to Marry; FriendFactor; Forum for Equality; Garden State Equality; Georgia Equality; Gay and Lesbian Advocates and Defenders (GLAD); the Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN); Gay Men of African Descent (GMAD); Give a Damn Campaign; GMHC; GSA Network; Hetrick-Martin Institute; Hispanic Black Gay Coalition (HBGC); Human Rights Campaign (HRC); Immigration Equality; Indiana Equality; It Gets Better Project; Latino Equality Alliance; Latino GLBT History; LGBT Faith Leaders of African Descent; Log Cabin Republicans; the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC); Mass Equality; Massachusetts Transgender Political Coalition (MTPC); MOVILH; National Black Justice Coalition (NBJC); the National Bullying Prevention Center by PACER; the National Council of La Raza (NCLR); National Center for Lesbian Rights (NCLR); National Center for Transgender Equality (NCTE); the National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC); One Colorado; OutFront Minnesota; Out & Equal; OutServe; Parents, Family and Friends of Lesbians and Gays (PFLAG); Point Foundation; promo; Reaching Out MBA; Sean’s Last Wish; SAGE; Service Members Legal Defense Network (SLDN); Straight But Not Narrow; The Task Force; Tennessee Equality Project; Transgender Law Center; Transgender Legal Defense and Education Fund (TLDEF); Trans People of Color Coalition (TPCC);Tennessee Equality Project; Trans Ohio; Trans People of Color Coalition; Trans Youth Support Network (TYSN); The Trevor Project; True Colors Fund; The Village Family Services; We Are Family; WikiQueer; and Youth Empowered to Act (YETA) will all participate by wearing purple on October 19, turning their social media channels purple, and encouraging members to participate.

Among those who participated in 2011: hosts of “The Today Show,” “Good Morning America,” “Live! With Regis & Kelly,” “The View,” “CBS Evening News,” “NBC Nightly News,” and “ABC World News.” Celebrities included Tyra Banks, Cher, Ellen DeGeneres, Ricky Martin, Julianne Moore and Oprah Winfrey. Corporations AT&T, Goldman Sachs, Facebook, MTV and NBC Universal along with national landmarks Times Square, Los Angeles International Airport and the White House have also participated.