December 1 marks the annual observance of World AIDS Day. Locally, World AIDS Day ceremonies are being held in Pensacola and Fort Walton Beach.

The Pensacola World AIDS Day event takes place at 6 p.m. at Martin Luther King Jr. Plaza, downtown. The program features a keynote speech by Dr. Susan Walch from the University of West Florida Psychology Department. Afterward, there will be a candlelight walk to Sole’ Inn on Palafox Street, where AIDS Memorial Quilts will be on display. Also, on-site HIV testing will be available.

World AIDS Day is commemorated each year on December 1st.  Pensacola and surrounding communities held an observance at the Hancock Pavilion at Community Maritime Park Stadium.

The event provided an opportunity support those suffering from HIV and AIDS.  Also, it was a time to remember those 1,224 Northwest Florida residents who have lost their lives to the disease. Many of those individuals were honored with AIDS memorial quilts that were hung from the rafters.

There were performances by the Belmont Youth Band and Ballet Pensacola.