Golden Gate Park

Golden Gate Park

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Golden Gate Park, located in San Francisco, California, is a large urban park
Urban park
An urban park, is also known as a municipal park or a public park, public open space or municipal gardens , is a park in cities and other incorporated places to offer recreation and green space to residents of, and visitors to, the municipality...

 consisting of 1017 acres (411.6 ha) of public grounds. Configured as a rectangle, it is similar in shape but 20% larger than Central Park
Central Park
Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan in New York City, United States. The park initially opened in 1857, on of city-owned land. In 1858, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux won a design competition to improve and expand the park with a plan they entitled the Greensward Plan...

 in New York, to which it is often compared. It is over three miles (5 km) long east to west, and about half a mile north to south. With 13 million visitors annually, Golden Gate is the third most visited city park in the United States after Central Park
Central Park
Central Park is a public park in the center of Manhattan in New York City, United States. The park initially opened in 1857, on of city-owned land. In 1858, Frederick Law Olmsted and Calvert Vaux won a design competition to improve and expand the park with a plan they entitled the Greensward Plan...

 in New York City and Lincoln Park
Lincoln Park
Lincoln Park is an urban park in Chicago, which gave its name to the Lincoln Park, Chicago community area.Lincoln Park may also refer to:-Urban parks:*Lincoln Park , California*Lincoln Park, San Francisco, California...

 in Chicago.

History



In the 1860s, San Franciscans began to feel the need for a spacious public park similar to Central Park that was taking shape in New York. Golden Gate Park was carved out of unpromising sand and shore dunes that were known as the "outside lands" in an unincorporated area west of then-San Francisco's borders. Although the park was conceived under the guise of recreation, the underlying justification was to attract housing development and provide for the westward expansion of The City. The tireless field engineer William Hammond Hall
William Hammond Hall
William Hammond Hall was a civil engineer who was the first State Engineer of California, and designed Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, CA.After serving with the U.S...

 prepared a survey and topographic map of the park site in 1870 and became commissioner in 1871. He was later named California's first State Engineer and developed an integrated flood control
Flood control
In communications, flood control is a feature of many communication protocols designed to prevent overwhelming of a destination receiver. Such controls can be implemented either in software or in hardware, and will often request that the message be resent after the receiver has finished...

 system for the Sacramento Valley
Sacramento Valley
The Sacramento Valley is the portion of the California Central Valley that lies to the north of the San Joaquin-Sacramento Delta in the U.S. state of California. It encompasses all or parts of ten counties.-Geography:...

 when he was not working on Golden Gate Park.

The actual plan and planting were developed by Hall and his assistant, John McLaren, who had apprenticed in Scotland, the homeland of many of the nineteenth century's best professional gardeners. The initial plan called for grade separations of transverse roadways through the park, as Frederick Law Olmsted
Frederick Law Olmsted
Frederick Law Olmsted was an American journalist, social critic, public administrator, and landscape designer. He is popularly considered to be the father of American landscape architecture, although many scholars have bestowed that title upon Andrew Jackson Downing...

 had provided for Central Park, but budget constraints and the positioning of the Arboretum and the Concourse ended the plan. In 1876, the plan was almost exchanged for a racetrack favored by "the Big Four" millionaires, Leland Stanford
Leland Stanford
Amasa Leland Stanford was an American tycoon, industrialist, robber baron, politician and founder of Stanford University.-Early years:...

, Mark Hopkins, Collis P. Huntington
Collis P. Huntington
Collis Potter Huntington was one of the Big Four of western railroading who built the Central Pacific Railroad as part of the first U.S. transcontinental railroad...

, and Charles Crocker
Charles Crocker
Charles Crocker was an American railroad executive.-Early years:Crocker was born in Troy, New York, to a modest family and moved to an Indiana farm at age 14. He soon became independent, working on several farms, a sawmill, and at an iron forge. In 1845 he founded a small, independent iron...

. Hall resigned and the remaining park commissioners followed him. The original plan, however, was back on track by 1886, when streetcars delivered over 47,000 people to Golden Gate Park on one weekend afternoon (the city's population at the time was about 250,000). Hall selected McLaren as his successor in 1887.

The first stage of the park's development centered on planting trees, in order to stabilize the ocean dunes that covered three-quarters of the park's area. By 1875, about 60,000 trees, mostly Blue Gum Eucalyptus, Monterey pine
Monterey Pine
The Monterey Pine, Pinus radiata, family Pinaceae, also known as the Insignis Pine or Radiata Pine is a species of pine native to the Central Coast of California....

 and Monterey cypress, had been planted. By 1879, that figure had more than doubled to 155,000 trees over 1000 acre (404.7 ha). Later McLaren scoured the world through his correspondents for trees. When McLaren refused to retire at age 60, as was customary, the San Francisco city government was bombarded with letters: when he reached 70, a charter amendment was passed to exempt him from forced retirement. He lived in McLaren Lodge in Golden Gate Park until he died at age 96, in 1943.

In 1903, a pair of Dutch-style windmill
Windmill
A windmill is a machine which converts the energy of wind into rotational energy by means of vanes called sails or blades. Originally windmills were developed for milling grain for food production. In the course of history the windmill was adapted to many other industrial uses. An important...

s were built at the extreme western end of the park. These pumped water throughout the park. The north windmill has been restored to its original appearance and is adjacent to a flower garden, a gift of Queen Wilhelmina
Wilhelmina of the Netherlands
Wilhelmina was Queen regnant of the Kingdom of the Netherlands from 1890 to 1948. She ruled the Netherlands for fifty-eight years, longer than any other Dutch monarch. Her reign saw World War I and World War II, the economic crisis of 1933, and the decline of the Netherlands as a major colonial...

 of the Netherlands. These are planted with tulip
Tulip
The tulip is a perennial, bulbous plant with showy flowers in the genus Tulipa, which comprises 109 species and belongs to the family Liliaceae. The genus's native range extends from as far west as Southern Europe, North Africa, Anatolia, and Iran to the Northwest of China. The tulip's centre of...

 bulbs for winter display and other flowers in appropriate seasons. Murphy's Windmill in the south of the park is currently being restored.

Most of the water used for landscape watering and for various water features is now provided by groundwater from the City's Westside Basin Aquifer. However, the use of highly processed and recycled effluent
Effluent
Effluent is an outflowing of water or gas from a natural body of water, or from a human-made structure.Effluent is defined by the United States Environmental Protection Agency as “wastewater - treated or untreated - that flows out of a treatment plant, sewer, or industrial outfall. Generally refers...

 from the city's sewage treatment plant, located at the beach some miles away to the south near the San Francisco Zoo
San Francisco Zoo
The San Francisco Zoo, housing more than 260 animal species, is a zoo located in the southwestern corner of San Francisco, California, between Lake Merced and the Pacific Ocean along the Great Highway...

 is planned for the near future. In the 1950s the use of this effluent during cold weather caused some consternation, with the introduction of artificial detergents but before the advent of modern biodegradable products. These "hard" detergents would cause long-lasting billowing piles of foam to form on the creeks connecting the artificial lakes and could even be blown onto the roads, forming a traffic hazard.

Golden Gate Park is adjacent to Haight-Ashbury, and it was the site of the Human Be-In
Human Be-In
The Human Be-In was a happening in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, the afternoon and evening of January 14, 1967. It was a prelude to San Francisco's Summer of Love, which made the Haight-Ashbury district a symbol as the center of an American counterculture and introduced the word 'psychedelic'...

 of 1967, preceding the Summer of Love
Summer of Love
The Summer of Love was a social phenomenon that occurred during the summer of 1967, when as many as 100,000 people converged on the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, creating a cultural and political rebellion...

. The tradition of large, free public gatherings in the park continues to the present, especially at Speedway Meadow. One of the largest events held annually at the park starting in 2001 has been the Hardly Strictly Bluegrass Festival (formerly the "Strictly Bluegrass Festival"), a free festival held in October. Speedway Meadow also plays host to a number of large-scale events such as the 911 Power to the Peaceful Festival held by musician and filmmaker Michael Franti with Guerrilla Management.

Kezar Stadium


Kezar Stadium
Kezar Stadium
Kezar Stadium is a stadium located adjacent to Kezar Pavilion in the southeastern corner of Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, California. It is the former home of the Oakland Raiders and the San Francisco 49ers of the NFL, and of the San Francisco Dragons of MLL. It also served as the home of the...

 was built between 1922 and 1925 in the southeast corner of the park. It hosted various athletic competitions and became the home stadium of the San Francisco 49ers
San Francisco 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers are a professional American football team based in San Francisco, California, playing in the West Division of the National Football Conference in the National Football League . The team was founded in 1946 as a charter member of the All-America Football Conference and...

 of the AAFC
All-America Football Conference
The All-America Football Conference was a professional American football league that challenged the established National Football League from 1946 to 1949. One of the NFL's most formidable challengers, the AAFC attracted many of the nation's best players, and introduced many lasting innovations...

 and NFL from 1946 to 1970, also hosting the Oakland Raiders
Oakland Raiders
The Oakland Raiders are a professional American football team based in Oakland, California. They currently play in the Western Division of the American Football Conference in the National Football League...

 of the AFL
American Football League
The American Football League was a major American Professional Football league that operated from 1960 until 1969, when the established National Football League merged with it. The upstart AFL operated in direct competition with the more established NFL throughout its existence...

 for one season in 1960. The old 59,000-seat stadium was demolished in 1989 and replaced with a modern 9,044-seat stadium, but includes a replica of the original concrete arch at the entryway. It has been used in recent years for soccer, lacrosse, and track and field and is the host of the annual city high school football championship.

Conservatory of Flowers



The Conservatory of Flowers is one of the world's largest conservatories built of traditional wood and glass panes. It was prefabricated for local entrepreneur James Lick
James Lick
James Lick was an American carpenter, piano builder, land baron, and patron of the sciences. At the time of his death, he was the wealthiest man in California, and left the majority of his estate to social and scientific causes.-Early years:James Lick was born in Stumpstown Pennsylvania on August...

 for his Santa Clara, California
Santa Clara, California
Santa Clara , founded in 1777 and incorporated in 1852, is a city in Santa Clara County, in the U.S. state of California. The city is the site of the eighth of 21 California missions, Mission Santa Clara de Asís, and was named after the mission. The Mission and Mission Gardens are located on the...

, estate but was still in its crates when he died in 1876. A group of San Franciscans bought it and offered it to the city, and it was erected in Golden Gate Park and opened to the public in 1879. In 1883, a boiler exploded and the main dome caught fire. A restoration was undertaken by Southern Pacific
Southern Pacific Railroad
The Southern Pacific Transportation Company , earlier Southern Pacific Railroad and Southern Pacific Company, and usually simply called the Southern Pacific or Espee, was an American railroad....

 magnate Charles Crocker
Charles Crocker
Charles Crocker was an American railroad executive.-Early years:Crocker was born in Troy, New York, to a modest family and moved to an Indiana farm at age 14. He soon became independent, working on several farms, a sawmill, and at an iron forge. In 1845 he founded a small, independent iron...

. It survived the earthquake of 1906
1906 San Francisco earthquake
The San Francisco earthquake of 1906 was a major earthquake that struck San Francisco, California, and the coast of Northern California at 5:12 a.m. on Wednesday, April 18, 1906. The most widely accepted estimate for the magnitude of the earthquake is a moment magnitude of 7.9; however, other...

 only to suffer another fire in 1918. In 1933 it was declared unsound and closed to the public, only to be reopened in 1946. In 1995, after a severe storm with 100 mph (160 km/h) winds damaged the structure, shattering 40 percent of the glass, the conservatory had to be closed again. It was cautiously dissected for repairs and finally reopened in September 2003.

AIDS Memorial Grove


The AIDS Memorial Grove
AIDS Memorial Grove
The National AIDS Memorial Grove in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California, is a dedicated space in the national landscape where millions of Americans touched directly or indirectly by AIDS can gather to heal, hope, and remember...

 has been in progress since 1988. In 1996, it was designated a national memorial
National Memorial
National Memorial is a designation in the United States for a protected area that memorializes a historic person or event. National memorials are authorized by the United States Congress...

 by an act of Congress, becoming an affiliated area of the National Park System. The Grove's executive director, Thom Weyand, has said that "part of the beauty of the grove is that as a memorial which receives no federal money, it is blessedly removed from the fight over the controversy of AIDS."

Music Concourse Area



The Music Concourse
Music Concourse
The Music Concourse is an open-air plaza within San Francisco's Golden Gate Park originally excavated for the California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894. After the fair, it underwent a significant redesign in order to be repurposed as a venue for public gatherings centered around music...

 is a sunken, oval-shaped open-air plaza originally excavated for the California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894
California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894
The California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894, commonly referred to as the "Midwinter Exposition" or the "Midwinter Fair", was a World's Fair that operated from January 27 to July 5 in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. In 1892, U.S. President Benjamin Harrison appointed M. H...

. Its focal point is the Spreckels Temple of Music, also called the "Bandshell" where numerous music performance have been staged. It includes a number of statues of various historic figures, four fountains, and a regular grid array of heavily pollarded trees. Since 2003, the Music Concourse underwent a series improvements to include an underground 800-car parking garage, and pedestrianization of the plaza itself. It is surrounded by various cultural attractions, including:

De Young Museum


Named for M. H. de Young
M. H. de Young
Michael Henry de Young was an American journalist and businessman.-Life and career:De Young was born in St. Louis, Missouri, the son of Amelia and Miechel de Young , who was a jeweler and dry-goods merchant. The family was Jewish, of Dutch Jewish descent...

, the San Francisco newspaper magnate, the De Young Museum is a fine arts museum that was opened January 1921. Its original building had been part of The California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894
California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894
The California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894, commonly referred to as the "Midwinter Exposition" or the "Midwinter Fair", was a World's Fair that operated from January 27 to July 5 in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. In 1892, U.S. President Benjamin Harrison appointed M. H...

, of which Mr. de Young was the director. The de Young was completely rebuilt and the new building opened in 2005.

Academy of Sciences


The California Academy of Sciences
California Academy of Sciences
The California Academy of Sciences is among the largest museums of natural history in the world. The academy began in 1853 as a learned society and still carries out a large amount of original research, with exhibits and education becoming significant endeavors of the museum during the twentieth...

 is one of the largest natural history museums in the world , and also houses the Steinhart Aquarium and the Morrison Planetarium. The Academy of Sciences carries exhibits of reptiles and amphibians, astronomy, prehistoric life, various gems and minerals, earthquakes, and aquatic life. A completely new building for the Museum opened in September 2008 designed by Renzo Piano
Renzo Piano
Renzo Piano is an Italian architect. He is the recipient of the Pritzker Architecture Prize, AIA Gold Medal, Kyoto Prize and the Sonning Prize...

.

Japanese Tea Garden



The 5 acre (2 ha) Japanese Tea Garden is the oldest public Japanese garden
Japanese garden
, that is, gardens in traditional Japanese style, can be found at private homes, in neighborhood or city parks, and at historical landmarks such as Buddhist temples, Shinto shrines and old castles....

 in the United States. The garden was designed by Makoto Hagiwara
Makoto Hagiwara
Baron was a Japanese American immigrant and landscape designer responsible for the creating and maintaining the Japanese Tea Garden at Golden Gate Park in San Francisco, California from 1895 until his death in 1925...

 for the California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894
California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894
The California Midwinter International Exposition of 1894, commonly referred to as the "Midwinter Exposition" or the "Midwinter Fair", was a World's Fair that operated from January 27 to July 5 in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. In 1892, U.S. President Benjamin Harrison appointed M. H...

, including still-standing features such as the Drum Bridge and the tea house. Subsequent additions included a pagoda
Pagoda
A pagoda is the general term in the English language for a tiered tower with multiple eaves common in Nepal, India, China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam and other parts of Asia. Some pagodas are used as Taoist houses of worship. Most pagodas were built to have a religious function, most commonly Buddhist,...

 and Zen garden. It is one reported site of the introduction of the fortune cookie
Fortune cookie
A fortune cookie is a crisp cookie usually made from flour, sugar, vanilla, and oil with a "fortune" wrapped inside. A "fortune" is a piece of paper with words of faux wisdom or a vague prophecy...

 to America.

San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum



The San Francisco Botanical Garden
San Francisco Botanical Garden
The San Francisco Botanical Garden is a large botanical garden in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park. Its 55 acres include over 50,000 individual plants, representing over 8,000 taxa from around the world, with particular focus on Magnolia species, high elevation palms, and cloud forest species...

 was laid out in the 1890s, but funding was insufficient until Helene Strybing willed funds in 1926. Planting was begun in 1937 with WPA
Works Progress Administration
The Works Progress Administration was the largest and most ambitious New Deal agency, employing millions of unskilled workers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects...

 funds supplemented by local donations. This 55 acre (22.3 ha) arboretum
Arboretum
An arboretum in a narrow sense is a collection of trees only. Related collections include a fruticetum , and a viticetum, a collection of vines. More commonly, today, an arboretum is a botanical garden containing living collections of woody plants intended at least partly for scientific study...

 contains more than 7,500 plant species. The arboretum also houses the Helen Crocker Russell Library, northern California's largest horticultural library.

Stow Lake


Stow Lake surrounds the prominent Strawberry Hill, now an island with an electrically pumped waterfall
Waterfall
A waterfall is a place where flowing water rapidly drops in elevation as it flows over a steep region or a cliff.-Formation:Waterfalls are commonly formed when a river is young. At these times the channel is often narrow and deep. When the river courses over resistant bedrock, erosion happens...

. Rowboats and pedalboats can be rented at the boathouse. Much of the western portion of San Francisco can be seen from the top of this hill, which at its top contains one of the reservoirs that supply a network of high-pressure water mains that exclusively supply specialized fire hydrants throughout the city.

Spreckels Lake



Named after sugar magnate Adolph B. Spreckels
Adolph B. Spreckels
Adolph Bernard Spreckels was a California businessman who ran Spreckels Sugar Company and who donated the California Palace of the Legion of Honor art museum to the city of San Francisco in 1924. His wife Alma was called the "great grandmother of San Francisco".-Biography:His father was Claus...

 who also served as San Francisco's Park Commissioner. Spreckels Lake is located on the northern side of the park near 36th Avenue. As the home waters of the San Francisco Model Yacht Club, one can usually find model yachts
Model yachting
Model yachting is the pastime of building and racing model yachts. It has always been customary for ship-builders to make a miniature model of the vessel under construction, which is in every respect a copy of the original on a small scale, whether steamship or sailing ship...

 sailing on Spreckels Lake. Many of these are of the 'free-sail' type used before the advent of the modern radio controlled model. The yachts are set up by their owners, and most include either an auxiliary wind vane or main sheet linkage to control the rudder in response to varying wind conditions. The yachts are then released, and pole handlers will walk down each side of the lake with a padded pole to prevent the yachts from colliding with the lake edge. The lake has been specifically designed for this type of operation, as it has a vertical edging (allowing the yachts to closely approach the shore) and a paved walkway around the entire edge. At one location near a grassy area, "duckling ramps" allow young wildlife to leave the pond safely.

Golden Gate Park Stadium


Golden Gate Park Stadium, also known as the "Polo Field", in the western section of the park was opened in 1906, originally envisioned as a 60,000 seat amphitheater with a mile-long circumference. The plan did not come to fruition, but the stadium did eventually incorporate bicycle and harness-racing tracks as well as a polo field. In 1967, stadium was the site of the Human Be-In
Human Be-In
The Human Be-In was a happening in San Francisco's Golden Gate Park, the afternoon and evening of January 14, 1967. It was a prelude to San Francisco's Summer of Love, which made the Haight-Ashbury district a symbol as the center of an American counterculture and introduced the word 'psychedelic'...

 which launched the Summer of Love
Summer of Love
The Summer of Love was a social phenomenon that occurred during the summer of 1967, when as many as 100,000 people converged on the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, creating a cultural and political rebellion...

 and where Timothy Leary
Timothy Leary
Timothy Francis Leary was an American psychologist and writer, known for his advocacy of psychedelic drugs. During a time when drugs like LSD and psilocybin were legal, Leary conducted experiments at Harvard University under the Harvard Psilocybin Project, resulting in the Concord Prison...

 urged fellow hippies to "tune in, turn on, and drop out". Today, the stadium is marked by its raised perimeter and a small grandstand.

Bison Paddock


Bison
American Bison
The American bison , also commonly known as the American buffalo, is a North American species of bison that once roamed the grasslands of North America in massive herds...

 have been kept in Golden Gate Park since 1891, when a small herd was purchased by the park commission. At the time, the animal's population in North America had dwindled to an all-time low and San Francisco made a successful effort to breed them in captivity. In 1899, the paddock in the western section of the park was created. The animals today are cared for by staff from the San Francisco Zoo
San Francisco Zoo
The San Francisco Zoo, housing more than 260 animal species, is a zoo located in the southwestern corner of San Francisco, California, between Lake Merced and the Pacific Ocean along the Great Highway...

.

Windmills


In 1902, the parks commission authorized construction of two windmills to pump subterranean water to supply the park. The first one, on the north side of the park facing the Pacific Ocean, was completed in 1903 and became known first as the North Windmill and later as the Dutch Windmill; it is now paired with the Queen Wilhelmina Tulip Garden. The second, Murphy's Windmill, on the south side of the park, began operation in 1908. They operated for several decades, but fell into disrepair after the park switched to electric water pumps. The Dutch Windmill was restored in 1981 with Murphy's Windmill's restoration completed in September 2011.

Beach Chalet


The two-story Beach Chalet faces the Great Highway
Great Highway
The Great Highway is a road in San Francisco that forms the city's western edge along the Pacific coast. It runs for approximately next to Ocean Beach...

 and Ocean Beach at the far western end of the park. It was opened in 1925 in Spanish colonial revival style
Spanish Colonial Revival Style architecture
The Spanish Colonial Revival Style was a United States architectural stylistic movement that came about in the early 20th century, starting in California and Florida as a regional expression related to history, environment, and nostalgia...

 as a city-run restaurant and included changing rooms for beach visitors. Elaborate murals were added to the first floor as a 1936 Works Progress Administration
Works Progress Administration
The Works Progress Administration was the largest and most ambitious New Deal agency, employing millions of unskilled workers to carry out public works projects, including the construction of public buildings and roads, and operated large arts, drama, media, and literacy projects...

 project. The murals depict real people and scenes from San Francisco in the 1930s. The Mural room is now the San Francisco Visitor's Center. After several years of closure and following a renovation completed in 1996, the building now houses the Beach Chalet Brewery and Restaurant on the second floor, opened by Lara and Gar Truppelli and Timon Malloy. Its sister restaurant, the Park Chalet, is located to the back of the Beach Chalet with a dining room facing the park and outdoor dining on a terrace and lawn area.

Roadways


John F. Kennedy
John F. Kennedy
John Fitzgerald "Jack" Kennedy , often referred to by his initials JFK, was the 35th President of the United States, serving from 1961 until his assassination in 1963....

 Memorial Drive, formerly North Drive, winds from the East end of the park to the Great Highway
Great Highway
The Great Highway is a road in San Francisco that forms the city's western edge along the Pacific coast. It runs for approximately next to Ocean Beach...

. It was renamed after the Kennedy Assassination
John F. Kennedy assassination
John Fitzgerald Kennedy, the thirty-fifth President of the United States, was assassinated at 12:30 p.m. Central Standard Time on Friday, November 22, 1963, in Dealey Plaza, Dallas, Texas...

. The portion east of the 19th Avenue park crossing is closed to motor traffic on Saturdays, Sundays and holidays, providing an oasis for children, parents, pedestrians, bicyclists, and skaters. The other major east-west road is Martin Luther King Jr. Drive, renamed from South Drive in 1983. California State Highway 1 crosses the park north-to-south as Crossover Drive.

Minor features



There are also many more naturalistically landscaped lakes throughout the park, several linked together into chains, with pumped water creating flowing creeks. There is a short trail lined with large tree ferns adjacent to a small lake near the Conservatory of Flowers. The hippies called this area Mescaline
Mescaline
Mescaline or 3,4,5-trimethoxyphenethylamine is a naturally occurring psychedelic alkaloid of the phenethylamine class used mainly as an entheogen....

 Grove
and used to often go there to take psychedelic drug
Psychedelic drug
A psychedelic substance is a psychoactive drug whose primary action is to alter cognition and perception. Psychedelics are part of a wider class of psychoactive drugs known as hallucinogens, a class that also includes related substances such as dissociatives and deliriants...

s.

Several statues of historical figures are located throughout the park, including Francis Scott Key
Francis Scott Key
Francis Scott Key was an American lawyer, author, and amateur poet, from Georgetown, who wrote the lyrics to the United States' national anthem, "The Star-Spangled Banner".-Life:...

, Robert Emmet
Robert Emmet
Robert Emmet was an Irish nationalist and Republican, orator and rebel leader born in Dublin, Ireland...

, Robert Burns
Robert Burns
Robert Burns was a Scottish poet and a lyricist. He is widely regarded as the national poet of Scotland, and is celebrated worldwide...

, the double monument to Johann Goethe
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
Johann Wolfgang von Goethe was a German writer, pictorial artist, biologist, theoretical physicist, and polymath. He is considered the supreme genius of modern German literature. His works span the fields of poetry, drama, prose, philosophy, and science. His Faust has been called the greatest long...

 and Friedrich Schiller
Friedrich Schiller
Johann Christoph Friedrich von Schiller was a German poet, philosopher, historian, and playwright. During the last seventeen years of his life , Schiller struck up a productive, if complicated, friendship with already famous and influential Johann Wolfgang von Goethe...

, General Pershing
John J. Pershing
John Joseph "Black Jack" Pershing, GCB , was a general officer in the United States Army who led the American Expeditionary Forces in World War I...

, Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven
Ludwig van Beethoven was a German composer and pianist. A crucial figure in the transition between the Classical and Romantic eras in Western art music, he remains one of the most famous and influential composers of all time.Born in Bonn, then the capital of the Electorate of Cologne and part of...

, Giuseppe Verdi
Giuseppe Verdi
Giuseppe Fortunino Francesco Verdi was an Italian Romantic composer, mainly of opera. He was one of the most influential composers of the 19th century...

, President Garfield, and Thomas Starr King
Thomas Starr King
Thomas Starr King was an American Unitarian and Universalist minister, influential in California politics during the American Civil War. Starr King spoke zealously in favor of the Union and was credited by Abraham Lincoln with preventing California from becoming a separate republic...

. The bronze statue of Don Quixote and his companion, Sancho Panza
Sancho Panza
Sancho Panza is a fictional character in the novel Don Quixote written by Spanish author Don Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra in 1605. Sancho acts as squire to Don Quixote, and provides comments throughout the novel, known as sanchismos, that are a combination of broad humour, ironic Spanish proverbs,...

 kneeling to honor their creator, Cervantes
Miguel de Cervantes
Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra was a Spanish novelist, poet, and playwright. His magnum opus, Don Quixote, considered the first modern novel, is a classic of Western literature, and is regarded amongst the best works of fiction ever written...

, combines historical and fictitious characters. At the Horseshoe Court
Horseshoes
Horseshoes is an outdoor game played between two people using four horseshoes and two throwing targets set in a sandbox area. The game is played by the players alternating turns tossing horseshoes at stakes in the ground, which are traditionally placed 40 feet apart...

 in the northeast corner of the park near Fulton and Stanyan, there is a concrete bas-relief of "The Horseshoe Pitcher" by Jesse "Vet" Anderson, a member of the Horseshoe Club.

Also, the "Janis Joplin Tree" is a favorite site for many tourists and locals. Located on the edge of Hippie Hill, a small hill at the eastern end of Golden Gate Park that has been a popular spot for marijuana
Cannabis (drug)
Cannabis, also known as marijuana among many other names, refers to any number of preparations of the Cannabis plant intended for use as a psychoactive drug or for medicinal purposes. The English term marijuana comes from the Mexican Spanish word marihuana...

 smokers since hippies often gathered for that purpose during the Summer of Love
Summer of Love
The Summer of Love was a social phenomenon that occurred during the summer of 1967, when as many as 100,000 people converged on the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood of San Francisco, creating a cultural and political rebellion...

, it is said to have just enough room in its branches for a girl and her guitar.

Chronic homeless encampments


Since the 1980s, the city of San Francisco has grappled with what to do about large encampments of chronically-homeless people living in Golden Gate Park, which have been criticized as unsanitary, unsafe and "demoralizing" for park users and workers. The camps have been described by journalists as full of garbage, broken glass, hypodermic needles and human excrement, and the people in them are described as chronically homeless, many suffering from serious addictions, and often behaving aggressively with police and park gardeners. There have been occasional incidents of violence and vandalism related to the homeless in the park, including the 2010 park beating to death of a homeless man and an attack on park visitors by dogs owned by a park resident, also in 2010.

Starting in 1988 under then-mayor Art Agnos, and continuing under the direction of subsequent mayors including Frank Jordan
Frank Jordan
Francis M. “Frank” Jordan is a U.S. politician, foundation executive and former Chief of Police.Jordan was born in San Francisco in 1935 and graduated from Sacred Heart High School in 1953...

, Willie Brown
Willie Brown
Willie Brown may refer to:*Willie Brown , Mayor of San Francisco, 1996–2004, Speaker of the California State Assembly, 1980–1995*Willie Brown , American football Hall-of-Fame cornerback...

 and Gavin Newsom
Gavin Newsom
Gavin Christopher Newsom is an American politician who is the 49th and current Lieutenant Governor of California. Previously, he was the 42nd Mayor of San Francisco, and was elected in 2003 to succeed Willie Brown, becoming San Francisco's youngest mayor in 100 years. Newsom was re-elected in 2007...

, San Francisco police have conducted intermittent sweeps of the park aimed at eliminating the camps. Tactics have included information campaigns designed to inform homeless residents about city services available to help them, waking sleeping homeless people and making them leave the park, issuing citations for infractions and misdemeanors such as camping, trespassing or public intoxication, that carry penalties of $75 to $100, and the seizure and removal from the park of homeless people's possessions.

The crackdowns have been criticized by anti-poverty activists and civil liberties groups, who say they attack only the symptoms of homelessness while ignoring its root causes, and criminalize the poor for their poverty while ignoring their property rights and constitutional rights. In 2006, the American Civil Liberties Union
American Civil Liberties Union
The American Civil Liberties Union is a U.S. non-profit organization whose stated mission is "to defend and preserve the individual rights and liberties guaranteed to every person in this country by the Constitution and laws of the United States." It works through litigation, legislation, and...

 brought a lawsuit against the city government on behalf of 10 homeless people, alleging property violations by the city during sweeps in Golden Gate Park the year before.

Golden Gate Park in film



Charlie Chaplin filmed scenes for at least two movies in the park including A Jitney Elopement
A Jitney Elopement
A Jitney Elopement was Charlie Chaplin's fifth film for Essanay Films. It starred Charlie Chaplin and Edna Purviance as lovers, with Edna wanting Charlie to take her away from an arranged marriage her father had planned for her. Charlie does take her away in a jitney, a type of share taxi...

and In the Park
In the Park
In the Park is Charlie Chaplin's fourth film released in 1915 by Essanay Films. It was his third film while at the Niles Essanay Studio. It was one of several films Charlie Chaplin created in a park setting...

, both from 1915. A scene in Orson Welles
Orson Welles
George Orson Welles , best known as Orson Welles, was an American film director, actor, theatre director, screenwriter, and producer, who worked extensively in film, theatre, television and radio...

' The Lady from Shanghai
The Lady from Shanghai
The Lady from Shanghai is a 1947 film noir directed by Orson Welles and starring Welles, his estranged wife Rita Hayworth and Everett Sloane. It is based on the novel If I Die Before I Wake by Sherwood King.-Plot:...

was shot in the Steinhart Aquarium in the old California Academy of Sciences
California Academy of Sciences
The California Academy of Sciences is among the largest museums of natural history in the world. The academy began in 1853 as a learned society and still carries out a large amount of original research, with exhibits and education becoming significant endeavors of the museum during the twentieth...

 building, and the Conservatory of Flowers
Conservatory of Flowers
The Conservatory of Flowers is a greenhouse and botanical garden that houses a collection of rare and exotic plants in Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California. With construction completed in 1878, it remains the oldest building in the park, and the oldest municipal wooden conservatory remaining...

 was filmed in Harold and Maude
Harold and Maude
Harold and Maude is a 1971 American dark comedy film directed by Hal Ashby and released by Paramount Pictures. It incorporates elements of dark humor and existentialist drama, with a plot that revolves around the exploits of a young man intrigued with death, Harold...

.

Dirty Harry
Dirty Harry
Dirty Harry is a 1971 American crime thriller produced and directed by Don Siegel, the first in the Dirty Harry series. Clint Eastwood plays the title role, in his first outing as San Francisco Police Department Inspector "Dirty" Harry Callahan....

scenes were filmed in Kezar Stadium, located in Golden Gate Park.

The starship in Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home
Star Trek IV: The Voyage Home is a 1986 American science fiction film released by Paramount Pictures. It is the fourth feature film based on the Star Trek science fiction television series and completes the story arc begun in Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan and continued in Star Trek III: The...

is said to land in the park, but the scene was actually filmed at Will Rogers State Historic Park
Will Rogers State Historic Park
Will Rogers State Historic Park is the former estate of American humorist Will Rogers. It lies in the Santa Monica mountains in Los Angeles, in the Pacific Palisades area.-Geography:...

 near Los Angeles.

A scene from The Pursuit of Happyness
The Pursuit of Happyness
Varèse Sarabande released the soundtrack on January 9, 2007, which included sixteen tracks.-Box office:The film debuted first at the North American box office, earning $27 million during its opening weekend and beating out heavily promoted films such as Eragon and Charlotte's Web...

was shot in the Children's Park.

"Scaramouche" 1952 scenes of duels looking west into the fog at Speedway Meadows, interiors in De Young Museums old period rooms.

"Line-up" 1958 scenes shot inside Steinhart Aquarium.

Bugs Bunny cartoon "Bushy Hare" 1950 Bugs pops up in Golden Gate Park with Lloyd Lake Portals to the Past, the remains of the A.E. Towne mansion from the
1906 Earthquake.

In the TV Series Eli Stone
Eli Stone
Eli Stone is an American TV series, and also the name of the title character.San Francisco lawyer Eli Stone begins to see things, which leads him to discover a brain aneurysm...

, in the episode "Waiting for that Day", some citizens of San Francisco seek refuge in the park during a 6.8 earthquake. They later witness the destruction of the Golden Gate Bridge
Golden Gate Bridge
The Golden Gate Bridge is a suspension bridge spanning the Golden Gate, the opening of the San Francisco Bay into the Pacific Ocean. As part of both U.S. Route 101 and California State Route 1, the structure links the city of San Francisco, on the northern tip of the San Francisco Peninsula, to...

 from the park, though in reality, the bridge isn't visible from the park.

See also


  • Panhandle (San Francisco)
    Panhandle (San Francisco)
    The Panhandle is a park in San Francisco, California that forms a panhandle with Golden Gate Park. It is long and narrow, being three-quarters of a mile long and one block wide. Fell Street borders it to the north, Oak Street to the south, and Baker Street to the east. The Haight-Ashbury District...

  • San Francisco Nature Education
    San Francisco Nature Education
    San Francisco Nature Education is a non-profit environmental education organization in San Francisco, California that provides interactive environmental education programs for the development of leadership and stewardship in youth and adults....



External links