The summer of 1967. In San Francisco, this “Summer of Love,” as it was called, swelled like a wave and swept the entire city into a magical season of revolution. Lured by the promise of ecstasy, music and utopian liberation, about 100,000 adventurers — aged anywhere from 15 to 30 — flocked to the city that summer in the name of free love and freedom itself. People wore flowers in their. They danced through the streets. They gathered in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood near Golden Gate Park to sing songs of peace during a time of war. It became the iconic cultural movement of the 1960s, bore out in music, art, fashion and literature.
Now, five decades later, San Francisco is paying tribute to the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love with tons of fun events this year. In honor of this important milestone for the city, we’re walking you through some of the coolest things to see and do over the next year.
See: Get in the free spirit with an art show or exhibition. There’s the “Summer of Love: Art, Fashion, and Rock & Roll” from April 8 to Aug. 20 at the de Young Museum, which highlights San Francisco’s counterculture featuring iconic posters and psychedelic art, plus interactive music and light shows. Another must-see is “Jim Marshall’s 1967“ exhibition at San Francisco City Hall, which opens Jan. 26, 2017, and features 80 photographs from the thousands Marshall took in one fast-paced calendar year. Two other interesting shows include: “Hippie Modernism: The Struggle for Utopia” — an exhibit focusing on the art, design and architecture produced by counterculture artists during the ‘60s and early ‘70s, which takes place from Feb. 8 to May 21 at University of California, Berkeley Art Museum and Pacific Film Archive; and “On the Road to the Summer of Love,” a photographic exhibition guest-curated by Grateful Dead historian Dennis McNally at the California Historical Society from May 12 to Sept. 10. If you want to venture into hipster Oakland for an afternoon, “All Power to the People: Black Panthers at 50“ at the Oakland Museum of California, which is now on display until Feb. 12, 2017 is worthy of a visit.
Do: There will be a Summer of Love 50th Anniversary Concert in June 2017 — lineup and specific dates are forthcoming. If you happen to be in the city Feb. 11 through 19, make sure to check out PIER 39 and their annual Tulipmania event, which features more than 39,000 planted tulips planted — and a peace sign in the West Park made up of the flowers. PIER 39 will also be the site of a groovy 60s dance party, featuring a Beatle’s cover band on Friday, June 23. If you love music and the counter culture, don’t miss the 40th Anniversary Haight-Ashbury Street Festival in June 2017 (exact dates TBA), where you can listen to live music, nosh on local specialties and dance in the same streets where the Summer of Love started. You gotta ride in authentic VW hippie bus and experience the city at least once in your life — for that journey, look no further than the San Francisco Love Tour. Take a guided walk through the Haight-Ashbury, stepping nto the footsteps of icons like Janis Joplin and Jerry Garcia as you learn about 60s music and pop culture on the Flower Power Walking Tours. If you’re a music lover, there are plenty of events to hit: the Fillmore Jazz Festival, set on Fillmore Street and was one of the hotspots of the Summer of Love, spotlights Bay Area jazz legends in an outdoor setting on July 1 and 2. (Even if you’re not in the city during that weekend, you should see a show at the historic Fillmore Auditorium, which is where Summer of Love icons such as Janis Joplin, Jefferson Airplane and James Brown performed. Jerry Day, held at the Jerry Garcia Amphitheater on Aug. 6, is another fun event showcasing live entertainers performing a tribute to one of the greats.
Eat: At some point during your stay, you might want to hit up Hard Rock Café at PIER 39 for lunch, where you can view 60s treasures such as an autographed Grateful Dead guitar, Jerry Garcia’s bomber jacket and one of the last photos ever taken of Janis Joplin. During Summer Solstice on June 20 and 21, there will also be countless food-centered festivities and wine tasting events happening in local neighborhoods across the city. Tommy’s Joynt is another SF staple, famous for its roast beef sandwiches, buffalo stew and notorious location on Geary, where Janis Joplin is said to have rented an apartment next door to the restaurant. For breakfast, there’s the revered Haight-Ashbury relic, Pork Store Cafe (we’re told that you must order the Pork Store Special — two pork chops, two eggs, hash browns and biscuit). For a venture outside city limits, skip across Golden Gate Bridge to Marin to pay a visit to Terrapin Crossroads, a waterfront restaurant and music venue owned by Grateful Dead founding bass guitarist Phil Lesh. In terms of bars, there’s two historic locales: Magnolia Pub & Brewery in the Haight, the proclaimed birthplace of the Grateful Dead, and Wild Set West in Bernal Heights, where Bob Dylan and Janis Joplin hung out back in the day.
Live: When you make your trek to San Francisco, do take a tour of this house-like luxury view condo in Russian Hill. Granted, it’s a far cry from Haight-Ashbury — but it does offer the most expansive views of the city. Priced at $3,459,00, the light-filled tri-level offers a location a block away from Lombard, the world’s famous Crooked Street, and steps to the fine dining and shopping of Russian Hill, North Polk and North Beach, as well as parks and the North Waterfront, not far from famous Pier 39. The townhouse offers three bedrooms, a family room, office and two and a half baths, plus an office and private deck with sweeping panoramas of the North Bay, Alcatraz, Coit Tower and the Financial District skyline.