After his application for a free Summer of Love 50th Anniversary concert in Golden Gate Park was denied by the Recreation and Park Department and an appeal of that decision was also denied, Mill Valley promotor Boots Hughston, who had claimed he would pay out of pocket as much as $700,000 for the concert and had been in talks with musicians, says he plans to step down from the application process.
“Bottom line is, I think we should resubmit, but resubmit without me,” Hughston said according to the Examiner at a meeting of a group calling itself "The Consul of Light," a body made up of San Franciscans with ties to the original Human Be-In and an interest in revisiting the event on its big anniversary. “The best I can do is withdraw," Hughston concluded after he was criticized by Rec and Park for advertising the event to the public for tens of thousands more attendees than he'd previously indicated on his application.
Writing to the website where he'd previously advertised the concert as a go, Hughston indicates that "an appeal to the Board of Supervisors" might be in the works, and describes the concert as "on hold." Among other concerns, some musicians Hughston claimed would perform at the event indicated they had not finalized their plans or even discussed the matter with Hughston. Though there were still others who came to Hughston's defense, Rec and Park recommended he resubmit the application with another promotor to help him. Now, at least as it pertains to the application, Hughston is bowing out. Whether he'll till contribute funds or coordinate programming remains to be seen, and SFist has reached out to him to find out just that— we'll update this post if and when he responds.
Now the Consul of Light is stepping in, as the Examiner reports from their meeting of abut 60 members like Ann Cohen, an original Human Be-In attendee. The Consul elected to pursue permitting for a Summer of Love party on Haight Street in June, bypassing the Rec and Park Department and encouraging business along the tourist corridor in a street fair atmosphere.
As for a concert in the park, the group says they'll seek permits for a September music festival. Spearheading an application process will be Sunshine Powers, the owner of Haight Street shop Love on Haight. Powers, who was born a little too late for the original hippie movement, in 1980, and grew up in the Sunset, said she was "happy and nervous" to help in the Anniversary effort.
"I live and breathe Haight Street, and I love every moment of it," Powers once told Hoodline. "With all that we have going on in the world today, we need more peace, love, kindness, rainbows and sparkles."
But there's such a thing as too much razzle dazzle. “I might’ve sparkled you,” Powers told a Consul member during the meeting after some glitter she was wearing flew at him while she spoke. We'll have to see how that goes over with the folks at Rec and Park.
Update: Hughston tells SFist "I will support the concert 100 percent, the thing is already together, lights — sound, totally booked, so there's really no loose ends. It's just a matter of Sunshine Powers taking the permit out, and we'll get somebody from Hardly Strictly on our board." As for remaining on the permit application himself, Hughston said "there's just too much flak, they're coming after me personally."