Under the theme “Bridging Us All,” The Golden Gate Festival is the center point of the Bridge’s year-long 75th anniversary program. Harkening back to the spirit of the Golden Gate Fiesta when the Bridge opened on May 27, 1937, highlights of the 2012 celebration include an historic watercraft parade, multiple music and dance stages, art installations, history and educational presentations, display of cars from 1937 to the present, and Bridge-related activities on Crissy Field and the Marina Green. These activities will be complemented by Bridge-themed events and performances at waterfront venues including Fort Mason Center, Ghirardelli Square, San Francisco Maritime National Historical Park, Fisherman’s Wharf, and Pier 39, among others. On Sunday evening, May 27th at approximately 9:30 pm, the weekend celebration will conclude with a spectacular 75th anniversary fireworks display and grand finale.
“The Golden Gate Bridge stands today as a testament of innovation and imagination, a bridge built by the people during the Great Depression,” said Janet Reilly, president of the Golden Gate Bridge, Highway and Transportation District Board of Directors. “In honor of its 75th anniversary, we are reaching out to the people of the Bay Area and beyond to join us in a community-based celebration along the San Francisco waterfront. The Bridge is not the stage this time; rather, the community will come together to celebrate this engineering wonder together in a festival atmosphere.”
In addition to The Golden Gate Festival, the year-long 75th anniversary features:
- 75 Tributes to the Bridge, a series of public programs being presented throughout the year by Bay Area museums, cultural centers, universities, arts organizations, children’s groups, and others.
- Construction of a new 3,500-square-foot Bridge Pavilion to serve as a welcome and interpretive center and to provide a museum store featuring a wide range of commemorative and interpretive Bridge merchandise;
- Renovation of the historic Round House into a program staging and visitor education center;
- Upgrades to the Bridge Café, including a new menu with locally sourced and sustainable items;
- A “green screen” photo area where visitors can picture themselves in dramatic and publicly inaccessible Bridge locations, such as the top of the tower;
- New personally guided Bridge tours, including the first-ever night tours, utilizing the latest in audio technology; and
- Enhancements to the Bridge Plaza and the adjacent national parklands, trails and overlooks within Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA).