Summer of Love – 2017

The de Young museum is commemorating the fiftieth anniversary of the “Summer of Love.” About 100,000 young people came to San Francisco in 1967 to share in peace and love. The Summer of Love Experience: Art, Fashion, and Rock & Roll runs through August 20. The exhibition includes a curtained room where museum-goers can immerse themselves in the sixties, by lying back on beanbag chairs surrounded by a psychedelic light show accompanying rock music… and play with their smartphones.

Rainmakers and Royal Rosarians

The first of the Portland Rose Festival’s three parades, the Starlight, takes over the downtown streets this weekend. The Junior Parade is later in the week and the finale, the Grand Floral Parade is June 10. All three incorporate their corporate sponsors in their names.

The first Rose Festival took place in 1907 and included a nighttime parade with illuminated trolley cars. By 1925 the nighttime procession had take on a life of its own as the lighthearted Merrykhana Parade became the flip side to the formal Grand Floral. The Merrykhana court comprised “curvaceous” and “leggy” young women in bathing suits, in contrast to the Rose Queen and Princesses in gowns. The Royal Rosarians, in their white suits and straw hats, were – and still are – official Festival ambassadors. The Rainmakers were noted for spraying spectators with water from their parade floats. There were rumors that alcohol might have been involved.

By the 1970s, Merrykhana spectators had joined in on the fun, returning their own barrage of water squirts. The 1972 parade, a near riot with flying balloons filled with rocks and ice, was the last. The family-friendly Starlight parade debuted in the Bicentennial year of 1976.