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Surrealistic Summer Solstice, San Francisco 2017

The Surrealistic Summer Solstice will be held June 21 in San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park in front of the Conservatory of Flowers. JFK Drive will be closed that day to accommodate the vendors. Dusk to midnight. Free, but tickets are already gone.

Hippie Hill, San Francisco
Hippie Hill 1967 – photo courtesy San Francisco Chronicle

Good news for some, but there is sour grapes brewing in the City of Love by the Bay.

Mill Valley promoter Boots Hughston says the city is trying to ‘steal’ his event!

After twice rejecting an independent producer’s plan to hold a free concert in Golden Gate Park to honor the 50th anniversary of the Summer of Love, the San Francisco Recreation and Park Department will throw its own free concert on June 21.

The Surrealistic Summer Solstice boasts it will feature members of the Jefferson Airplane, Quicksilver Messenger Service and the Chambers Brothers, as well as “over 40 legendary musicians” in a jam that builds to a lighting of the Conservatory of Flowers in mandalas of psychedelic color. – SF Chronicle

Boots is the promoter who brought us such legendary events as the 40th Anniversary Concert for the Summer of Love, and he has a legitimate point or two.

In the planning for more than two years, his celebration of 1967’s music was beyond the planning stage and into the lengthy permit process when they were mysteriously denied permission at nearly the last minute. Then the city denied them a different scheduled date in August, and announced their own free concert.

The event they are planning is in a space that holds barely 10,000 people, and is by reservation only. Tickets are gone already folks!

According to the SF Chronicle The Grand Lighting and Surrealistic Summer Solstice is being privately funded, according to Phil Ginsburg, general manager of Rec and Park.

Ginsburg said that “there is no person who owns the Summer of Love” and that the larger concert planned by Hughston is just one among 57,000 applications to use the park each year.

The lineup is set to include David Freiberg, bassist and vocalist for Quicksilver, Jack Cassady of Jefferson Airplane and Hot Tuna, and two of the Chambers Brothers. Norman Greenbaum is set to sing “Spirit in the Sky.”