Worth a Look: Great Hall / Long Hall As a Home for HIV/AIDS Activists

HIV/AIDS great hall long hall plummer park historic preservationLaura Dominguez, preservation manager at the Los Angeles Conservancy, chronicles the importance of Plummer Park’s Great Hall / Long Hall for early HIV/AIDS activists in a story with a video featuring Kevin Farrell and Helene Schpak on KCET’s website that is worth a look.

“Completed in 1938, Plummer Park and its Great Hall/Long Hall reveal essential layers in West Hollywood’s development and identity, from its New Deal origins to its role in LGBTQ community organizing.

“Decades after its construction, at the height of the HIV/AIDS epidemic in the 1980s and ’90s, the facility in Plummer Park hosted meetings of the local chapter of the prominent advocacy group ACT UP (AIDS Coalition to Unleash Power), serving as the backdrop to unprecedented campaigns for greater visibility and more effective treatment. The group was instrumental in compelling the federal government to respond to the HIV/AIDS crisis through new research and healthcare programs.

“The construction of Plummer Park, however, predates West Hollywood’s incorporation as a city and its association with the LGBTQ community. In partnership with the Works Progress Administration (WPA), the County of Los Angeles dedicated the four-acre park in 1938 as part of countywide efforts to expand park space during the Great Depression.”

The full story and photos of Great Hall / Long Hall and the early AIDS activists, can be found here.

0 0 votes
Article Rating

Subscribe
Notify of
guest

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

16 Comments
Newest
Oldest
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Mollie Christine (@molliechristine)

Wow, it’s great to learn about the history of my family’s favorite park! I always thought Great Hall could be an especially great, unique city resource for families like mine: a medium-sized, more-or-less segregated auditorium (important for not disturbing community center users) with attached courtyard, kitchen, and bathrooms, that could host kid-friendly events any day that park personnel are on-site. With the imminent destruction of the Sky Room and Auditorium in West Hollywood Park and consolidation of that park’s amenities into one, tightly-planned building, Great Hall could be an even greater resource for WeHo families. I’m extremely puzzled that the… Read more »

Fix our Park!
Fix our Park!
4 years ago

@cathy and stephanie and roy and …all the same group of people. the park is used by myself, sorry cathy, im there often and see you there with my dog but who wants to argue with you. the problem is you think the park is your front yard. besides, aren’t you on the historic commission or one of those groups.. shouldn’t you recuse yourself? actually isn’t most of these posters your friends and just more members of the same group? but you don’t speak for the rest of us. we want a place to park , walk our dogs and… Read more »

Observer
Observer
4 years ago

Childish emotional behavior always claiming mistreatment from “city insiders”. Will the “tree huggers”and “park lovers” please step up and adopt a professional, informed demeanor in seeming collaborative opportunities rather than “good cop/ bad cop” diatribes and scorched earth rhetoric? Even the informed tree conservation folks were put off by the hysteria. The collective angst alone may be killing the trees and making the buildings shiver.

Virginia Gillick
Virginia Gillick
4 years ago

Thank goodness for Tree Huggers. With deep budget cuts to the EPA that are proposed and will no doubt be passed, we will get a better idea of all that we have to lose. Plummer Park is a gem of tranquility in a world of increasing madness. We also need to keep a keen eye on our Bond Debt here in West Hollywood. Plummer Park needs TLC that will NOT cost multiple millions. How bad can that be?

Shawn Thompson
Shawn Thompson
4 years ago

Wow a great back story to a building so many in the community here in West Hollywood might not know has so much history in the fight to Stop Aids in a time when the President wouldn’t even say that word. And Its so sad that the Audubon Society and Russian Library were evicted from this building, when the city made attempts to level it for a parking lot. I personally made effort once it was not demolished to work with the President of the Audubon Society to get them to return after being in this building for decades. Unfortunately… Read more »

Steve Martin
Steve Martin
4 years ago

Who says you can’t have a pool, an off leash area and preserve Great Hall and Long Hall?
It is just a lack of imagination. Don’t let the City Hall insiders tell us we only have two alternatives. We can make Plummer Park more user friendly and responsive to our changing needs while still respecting our history.

Tom Smart
Tom Smart
4 years ago

Great Hall / Long Hall should definitely be saved and spruced up/re-purposed. They are charming buildings in a charming neighborhood, something that will soon be scarce in the newly overbuilt concrete jungle of West Hollywood.

Pat Dixon
Pat Dixon
4 years ago

I think Plummer Park is fine the way it is; maybe a little cleaning up and painting, but this should not and cannot be turned into a yuppified dog park with underground parking. there are plenty of places on the eastside that “fix our park” and others can look to so they can create the kind of space they need. Plummer Park and Great Hall/Long Hall has served the community well and can continue to do so. We can’t wipe out our history and our future with the drastic changes they envision. You can easily put a small dog park… Read more »

Reprehensibly, Mean Stephanie
Reprehensibly, Mean Stephanie
4 years ago

@Fix our park! Best to get your facts straight before you comment. I take it you do not use Plummer Park, or you would know that it IS a neighborhood park for everybody from babies to 90+ year olds and every age in between, with a rich history dating back to the 19th Century right up to present day and that Great Hall/Long Hall, besides being listed on the California and United States National Historic Registers, is now being recognized as an important LGBTQ location of significance. The community never had any significant input into the process and it is… Read more »

David Reid
4 years ago

I wish Wehoville would not publish anonymous comments, its easy to gripe when you can be in the shadows. Thankfully the National Historic landmarks were saved. The City had the perfect opportunity – eminent domain — to buy the Movietown Plaza when it was vacated and a vacant lot. It could always be re-sold if the City got in a cash crunch. There would have been ample space for dedicated dog park. Parks are for people first. no one wants to face plant into dog poop. And not all people pick up after their pooping pooches. There is still room… Read more »

Roy Oldenkamp
Roy Oldenkamp
4 years ago

“Fix Our Park!” Perhaps history means nothing to you, but more than a few “tree huggers” would like to retain the character and nature of Plummer Park, including the beautiful Great Hall/Long WPA Spanish Revival buildings and the truly lovely and historic Fiesta Hall. If you want additional parking- which, by the way, currently is almost never at capacity- the north side lot could be double leveled with tennis courts on top, more than doubling the stall number. Or perhaps a robo-garage, a ’80’s style gurgling fountain in a mega drought and a crashed spaceship in the side of Fiesta… Read more »

fine7760
4 years ago

Plummer Park should be upgrade in a careful manner unlike the mess they have and are creating in West Hollywood Park. To begin with a BELOW ground parking structure should be built where the current parking lot and tennis courts currently exist. A new tennis court along with a swimming pool could be built above the parking structure and the excess space where the tennis courts now exist could become a Dog Park. We lost the historic home that used to exist there and both the Great Hall and Long Hall should be preserved and improved. Trees are a wonderful… Read more »

Click to Hide Advanced Floating Content

0 0 votes
Article Rating
16
0
Would love your thoughts, please comment.x
()
x