There will be stops in Beverly Hills and Skid Row, along with a charity polo match in Santa Barbara. But there will be no time for Disneyland or the La Brea Tar Pits. Britain’s newest royal couple is scheduled to arrive here on Friday, visiting Southern California for a little more than 48 hours on an official visit that palace officials say will “support the interests of the United Kingdom through the prism of the royal couple’s interest.”
Apparently, that does not include stops at the major tourist attractions.
Instead, Prince William and the former Kate Middleton will shuttle between events that are meant to highlight British businesses and filmmakers, raise money for the prince’s charity at the match and stop at an arts group that caters to poor children and teenagers near downtown.
Los Angeles Police Department officials have already begun cracking down on the paparazzi expected to try to elbow their way into the area surrounding the British consul general’s residence, where the couple is staying. The police are closing nearby streets and have said they will arrest anyone who tries to camp out on neighboring lawns, driveways and sidewalks.
“We deal with all kinds of dignitaries and actors and actresses, but it can be something very different when anyone related to Princess Diana is involved,” said Mitzi Fierro, a spokeswoman for the Police Department.
The couple will arrive at Los Angeles International Airport to be greeted by Gov. Jerry Brown and his wife, Anne Gust, then head to a reception at the consul general’s residence. Saturday night brings their closest encounter with Hollywood royalty, a black-tie bash for the British Academy of Film and Television Arts, where celebrities like Tom Hanks, Nicole Kidman and Ginnifer Goodwin are expected to attend. They will end their visit by attending a job fair for veterans before flying home on Sunday afternoon.
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