NEWS RELEASE CONTACT: Boots Hughston
‘Summer of Love’ 50th Anniversary Organizers Appeal
Park Permit Denial, Rally Supporters with Celebs
SAN FRANCISCO (Feb. 16, 2017) – Organizers of the San Francisco Summer of Love 50th Anniversary on Thursday will appeal the San Francisco Park and Recreation staff’s denial of a permit to present free public concerts in Golden Gate Park this June.
Summer of Love concert organizers hold a news conference Thursday, 9;30 a.m. at San Francisco City Hall, (1 Dr. Carlton B. Goodlett Place, Rm. 416, San Francisco 94102) kicked off with talks by psychedelic rock legends Country Joe McDonald and Barry Melton, founders of Country Joe and the Fish, David Freiberg, famed bass guitarist of the Jefferson Starship, and comedian Will Durst. The full Parks and Recreation Board of Commissioners is to meet beginning at 10 a.m.
“In all my 40 years of organizing these free public concerts, this is the first time we have been denied a permit,” said Boots Hughston, chief organizer of the 50th Anniversary Summer of Love celebration.
“Suddenly, it’s all about money. We’re a non-profit and cannot pay the same million dollar-plus fees some big, for-profit promoters now pay. We present this concert free to the public and we volunteer all of our services.” Hughston is expected to donate several hundred thousand dollars of his own money to fund the event.
Hughston said his group asks Parks and Recreation Board commissioners to reverse their permit department’s decision or to send the decision back for further staff review.
“San Francisco has as a global reputation at stake,” added Hughston. “This city’s heritage is steeped in the values forged by the Beat generation in the 50s, then morphed into the Diggers and hippies of the 1960s. It is part of our identity – not as visible as the Golden Gate Bridge but just as real.”
Hughston said 21 rock bands, including several with original members from 1967 performances, have confirmed plans to perform on the previously announced date of June 4. He said San Francisco itself has been promoting his Summer of Love concert around the nation, gaining publicity and booking hotel rooms for tourists who plan on attending an event that Park Board staff intends to prevent.
The Summer of Love celebrates San Francisco’s welcoming of an estimated 100,000 young people during the summer of 1967, when the city’s Haight-Ashbury District became a global beacon for young, free spirits embracing the principles of peace, love and compassion. It grew into the worldwide movement known as the hippies and flower children.