The Golden Gate Bridge is turning 75 on May 27, which calls for a grand celebration of fireworks, music, maritime displays and bridge memorabilia — the details of which were posted recently on the festival's website.
The bridge's 75th anniversary will be an all-day affair starting around 10 a.m. and continuing through the night until about 11 p.m. Various exhibits will be on display throughout the Marina, Presidio and Golden Gate National Park area all day including an orange artists' exhibition at Fort Point to celebrate the bridge's distinct coloring, music and dancing at Crissy Field and on the Marina Green, and a vintage maritime display with classic boats that can be viewed from St. Francis Yacht Club.
Throughout the day, official 75th anniversary merchandise will be available from vendors at the Marina Green, Crissy Field and Golden Gate Bridge Plaza. The day will culminate in a fireworks show at 9:30 p.m. paired with tunes from radio station KFOG 104.5 FM.
The fireworks display will not be televised. Organizers recommend heading to the waterfront along Fort Point to the Marina Green for best visibility or across the bridge in the Marin Headlands. Hilly spots in the Marina and Cow Hollow neighborhoods should also provide optimal views of the show.
The festival finale will not be visible from Pier 39, Fisherman's Wharf and further down the Embarcadero. Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy spokesman David Shaw said BART and San Francisco Municipal Railway transportation services will be increased as tens of thousands are expected to head to the San Francisco end of the bridge for the celebration of the landmark structure that was completed in 1937.
Shaw said event organizers highly encourage attendees to take public transit to the festival, as parking will be tight and street traffic congested. There will be no public parking in the Presidio, Crissy Field or Marina Green. Free bicycle parking will be available for those who will pedal to the event.
Unlike the 50th anniversary, there won't be a bridge walk this year. However, the bridge span will be open for cars throughout the day and for most of the night. The pedestrian walkways will be open until 6 p.m. the day of the festival and will reopen by 10 p.m., after the fireworks end.
All gates leading into San Francisco's Presidio will be closed to cars. For those who cannot wait for the festivities, this Saturday morning the Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy will be creating a "human bridge" as tribute to the real bridge. As many as 1,000 volunteers dressed in orange will arrange themselves on the shore of Crissy Field beach as the iconic landmark with the number 75 floating above.
An aerial camera will snap a photo of the "bridge," which Shaw said will be a "fun thing that we thought people would enjoy."
To participate, don orange and head to Crissy Field in the Presidio by 9 a.m. Saturday morning. For the tech-savvy, the Golden Gate Bridge has its own smart phone application, available for free download at the Apple iTunes store. It's called "GoGGBridge."
If you attend the anniversary celebration on the 27th, make sure to on Gilroy Patch.
More information about the anniversary of the bridge is available at goldengatebridge75.org.
Are you Patched in? Get our free newsletter in your inbox every morning. Register here.
—Bay City News Service