Harvey Milk’s birthday is coming up, and the Castro is turning out for a special celebration to honor one of San Francisco’s most prominent figures in LGBTQ+ history. Celebrate Harvey Milk Day on Sunday, May 22 from 12-5pm with DJs, music special guests, and a screening of The Times of Harvey Milk at the Castro Theatre.
BAAAHS, a.k.a. the Big-Ass Amazingly Awesome Homosexual Sheep, will host a fun and wild block party during the afternoon. The giant sheep-shaped roving DJ booth is a regular at Burning Man.
The event will also be a time for reflection, education, and activism. Harvey Milk’s friends and colleagues will kick off the event at noon alongside queer community elected officials, and the event will take aim at the hundreds of anti-LGBTQ bills filed around the country in the last few years.
The Castro Theatre will also screen a restored 35mm version of The Times of Harvey Milk, an Oscar-winning documentary which premiered in 1984 on the very same screen.
Hailing from Long Island, New York, Harvey Milk (1930-1978) is known for being a critical gay rights activist and politician in San Francisco in the 1970s. He moved to San Francisco in 1972 and began running for election to the SF Board of Supervisors, where he was eventually elected in 1977, making him one of the first openly gay elected officials in American history.
One year later, both Milk and then-mayor George Moscone were shot and killed by conservative former city supervisor Dan White. Milk’s tragic death put an end to his young political career, and his name and legacy still permeate the city. He was posthumously awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 2009 by then-President Barack Obama.
Governor Gavin Newsom proclaimed May 22 as Harvey Milk Day just last year. “Today we honor a hero for not just his own community, but for every Californian fighting for freedom and equality,” Newsom proclaimed. “Let us remember his words, ‘Hope will never be silent.’”
Be sure to attend Harvey Milk Day from 12-5pm on Sunday, May 22 at Jane Warner Plaza.
Featured image: @fcantoneph via Instagram