SFO airport

Marking the 50th anniversary of Summer of Love

San Francisco is marking the 50th anniversary of the ‘Summer of Love’ with a kaleidoscope of events celebrating the summer of 1967, when an estimated 100,000 young people made their way to the city’s Haight-Ashbury district to be part of a fresh, hip scene.

Back then, “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, the international hippie lifestyle, and fostering emerging rock musicians,” said Anthea Hartig, CEO and executive director the California Historical Society, “All of which continue to resonate today.”

Wearing tie-dyed clothing and a flower in your hair isn’t required when attending a Summer of Love happening, but it would certainly be groovy to do so.

Especially today, Saturday, May 13, during Flowers in your Hair Day,” honoring the pop song “San Francisco (Be Sure to Wear Flowers in Your Hair)” that became a “flower-power anthem” for the summer and for the hippie movement.

Today local radio stations will play the song at noon and flowers will be distributed at various spots throughout the city, including at San Francisco International Airport, where United Airlines’ specially-numbered flight 1967 will arrive from Los Angeles at Gate 67.

Travelers will be able to take selfies with Madame Tussaud wax figures of  Jerry Garcia, and Jimi Hendrix – and in a cut-out of a hippie bus,’ the Gay Men’s Chorus will sing the song of the day.

(More ‘Flowers in Your Hair Day’ events here.)

Many other “Summer of Love” anniversary events are planned or already underway. Here’s a sampling:

On Sunday, May 7, the annual How Weird Street Faire in downtown San Francisco will celebrate the Summer of Love with music, costumes, dancing, fun exhibits, circus stage shows, live and exhibited artwork, and more.

The Monterey International Pop Festival will take place at the Monterey County Fairgrounds on June 16-18, 2017. The event is scheduled on the exact same dates as the now legendary three-day festival that took place in 1967, when Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin, The Who, Ravi Shankar and Otis Redding made early career appearances.

Through August 20, 2017, the de Young Museum in Golden Gate Park is hosting “The Summer of Love Experience: Art, Fashion, and Rock & Roll,” exhibition, featuring more than 400 posters, fashion creations, photographs, political artwork and other cultural artifacts of the time, as well as music and commissioned light shows.

80 photographs by iconic photographer Jim Marshall chronicling the hippie movement and American music icons, such as the Grateful Dead and Jimi Hendrix, from 1965-1970 are on display in the San Francisco Arts Commission Galleries at City Hall through June 23, 2017. (Admission: free).

Ohio to San Francisco, 1967. Photo_Herb Greene. In ‘On the Road to the Summer of Love’ t the California Historical Society beginning May 12, 2017.

And through September 10, 2017 the California Historical Society is hosting “On the Road to the Summer of Love,” featuring a wide array of photographs and cultural ephemera as well as a variety of associated events and lectures.

Tours and more

A long list of other Summer of Love-themed music festivals, lectures, exhibitions and events can be found here, including ideas for a wide-range of offbeat, year-round walking, bus and (even) Segway tours, such as the Haight Ashbury Flower Power Walking Tour and the Magic Bus Experience, billed as a “mind-bending combination of professional theater, film, music and sightseeing” transporting tour going back in time to the summer of 1967.

Can’t make it to San Francisco? Consider Cleveland.

In Cleveland, Ohio, the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame’s newest exhibit, “Rolling Stone: 50,” celebrates the 50th anniversary of Rolling Stone Magazine, which was first published in San Francisco in November 1967, just a few months after the Summer of Love.

On view through Winter 2017 and occupying the top three floors of the museum, the exhibit draws on Rolling Stone’s explores the impact the magazine had on politics, popular culture and on the careers of individual artists.

 

 

Fresh art at SFO and Austin-Bergstrom airports

Courtesy Austin-Bergstrom Int’l Airport

Next time you go to the airport, see some art:

At Austin-Bergstrom International Airport, there’s a new exhibit featuring traditional art and artifacts from Mexico and artwork on loan from Austin’s Mexic-Arte Museum.

Some pieces in “Connections & Intersections,” are on loan from the Mexican Consulate General’s office in Austin. Other pieces are from the Mexic-Arte Museum’s Changarrito program, which is a mobile art vending cart that provides Central American visual artists with an opportunity to showcase and sell their work in Austin.  Look for the exhibition through the end of April, post-security between gates 7 to 11.

And, it looks like surf’s up at San Francisco International Airport.

Pipeline, Oahu, Hawaii 1975; Jeff Divine

The SFO Museum is presenting a new exhibition featuring Jeff Devine’s photographs capturing legendary surfers in the 1970s and images of surf culture.

 

Gerry Lopez, Sunset Beach, Oahu, Hawaii 1974; by Jeff Divine – courtesy SFO Museum

Jeff Define: 1970s Surf Photography is on view at SFO Airport in the pre-security area of the Departures Level in Terminal 3 through May 18, 2017.

 

Keep on Truckin’ at SFO Airport

The Amazing Answer Board c. 1944 Courtesy Eugene Orlando_Museum of Talking Boards_SFO Museum

There are lots of reasons I enjoy spending time at San Francisco International Airport.

Tops among them: the exhibits offered by the SFO Museum, which currently has a Ouija board – or spirit board – exhibit in Terminal 2.

On my most recent visit, I discovered one more reason to add to the list:

A shop selling Grateful Dead stickers and other groovy accessories, so travelers can take home that San Francisco vibe.

 

Museum Monday: Games of Chance at SFO Airport

If, by chance, you’ve got some time before or between flights at San Francisco International Airport, you’re in luck.

That’s because the SFO Museum has just kicked off a new exhibition featuring more than sixty examples of early gambling devices, including the first automatic payout, three reel slot machine.

 

 

According to the exhibition notes, at one time San Francisco was a hotbed for these types of games:

In no part of the world did gambling take place so openly and on such a large scale than in San Francisco during the Victorian era. The city’s residents were largely pioneers or one generation removed from those who risked all to relocate and gamble on a new life in the West. San Franciscans wagered in nearly every possible manner, including horse races, sporting contests, card games, wheels-of-fortune, and impromptu barroom arguments on every conceivable subject. At the beginning of the twentieth century, more than 3,000 machines operated freely, enticing customers from busy sidewalks into the saloons and cigar stores that proliferated throughout San Francisco. “

 

 

The devices on display range from very early models that rely on simple clock mechanisms and a payout by the bartender to automatic slot machines with elaborate carved-wood, cast-iron, or painted-aluminum bodies – and each was designed to part a person with a small bit of their money.

 

 

All the objects in this exhibit (and all photos used here) are courtesy of Joe Welch American Antique Museum in San Bruno, California and will be on display at SFO Airport in Terminal 3, Boarding Area F through June 18, 2017.

You can see descriptions of the gambling devices featured here – and photos of others – in the SFO Museum’s online exhibition.  But I bet the exhibition is far more entertaining if you see it in person.

At SFO Museum: spooky, cool Ouija board exhibit

 

The Amazing Answer Board c. 1944 Courtesy Eugene Orlando_Museum of Talking Boards_SFO Museum

The Amazing Answer Board c. 1944 Courtesy Eugene Orlando_Museum of Talking Boards_SFO Museum

It’s Halloween season and a perfect time for the SFO Museum at San Francisco International Airport to host an exhibit of Ouija boards and other “talking boards” from the 1890s to the present.

These devices can be dated back to 1886, when news spread of Spiritualists in Ohio using a “talking board” with letters, numbers and a small wooden device, called a planchette, that pointed to the letters. With that set-up, the living could ‘simply’ hold their hands on the planchette and then spirits could move their hands to letters and words and spell out messages. (“Water the plants.” “Bring home milk” “You snore..” are some of the messages I imagine…)

Official “Ouija” boards began being produced in 1890 and a variety of knock-offs were issued with imagery that included Egyptian sphinxes, swamis, fortune tellers and witches.

Here are some images from the exhibition,  The Mysterious Talking Board: Ouija and Beyond, which is on display at San Francisco International Airport through May 7, 2017, post-security in Terminal 2.

sfo-ouji-star-gazer-mystical-question-board-tray-c-1944

 

sfo-ouji-the-mitche-manitou-board-c-1917

sfo-ouija-ziriya-human-battery-circuit-talking-board-1972

Can’t make it to Terminal 2 at SFO before next May, 2017? Here’s a link to the online version of the exhibition and here are links to an online Museum of Talking Boards and an online Oujia board you can use to communicate with a spirit of your choice.

All images courtesy SFO/ Eugene Orlando/Museum of Talking Boards