Summer of Love

Since this is the 50th anniversary of San Francisco’s Summer of Love (that primarily took place in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood), there is much to do in the region.  At the time, the cultural center of North America (as San Francisco is often named) the counterculture was being celebrated and acted out in many ways.

As such, over the last few months, many events have been marking the celebration from five decades ago.  Now, the current celebrations are there to remind us what happened during the climactic era in San Francisco.  As CEO of the California Historical Society, Anthea Hartig said:

“In the summer of 1967, San Francisco was fertile ground for an emerging counterculture movement that blossomed into a season that changed the world, giving rise to art, technologies, revolutionary politics and the international hippie lifestyle, and fostering emerging rock musicians—all of which continue to resonate today.”

And as Director of Strategic Initiatives at the California Historical Society, Adam Hirschfelder noted:

“The Summer of Love has been characterized as about sex, drugs and Rock and Roll.  The 50th Anniversary has given us an opportunity to work with numerous cultural organizations in the Bay Area to explore the ways it was so much more than that and the numerous ways that era continues to shape the cultural world we know today.”

So what can San Franciscans get out of this anniversary?  Some of the events include: an immersive cultural exhibit, whose goal is to provide a taste of the Summer of Love via art, fashion and music from the 1960s.  psychedelic posters, tie-dye fashion, loose robes and photographs exhibiting a rebellious side of the time, bring the viewer right back to that time.

Then, at the Museum of the African Diaspora, there is a celebration of the debut of Jimi Hendrix, including a photo-based history lesson on what impact he had on the era.  People can also see his one-time home in the Haight viewing the murals on the exterior walls that commemorated his legacy.

And let’s not forget the Grateful Dead, that icon that made a huge impact of the time.  Haight-Ashbury was famous back in the day for the Grateful Dead so now one can check out the Victorian house on the street where the band’s original members lived between 1966 and 1968.

The Summer of Love was a heady time in San Francisco five decades ago.  how much has changed, and how much remains the same?  The anniversary marking provides some insight.

 

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