Jerry Day 411
On August 7th, 2011, the Excelsior Cultural Group and the Jerry Day Committee, fiscally-sponsored by San Francisco Parks Trust will present the 9th Annual Jerry (Garcia) Day Celebration (Jerry Day 2011) at the Jerry Garcia Amphitheater, Mclaren Park, located at 45 John F. Shelley Drive, bordering the Excelsior District of San Francisco.
Jerry Day was founded in 2002, when the community came together in order to fundraise for a dilapidated playground located in the southeastern section of San Francisco's Excelsior District. Realizing the need for financial help and awareness, a native of the community contacted the Jerry Garcia Estate in order to get their financial support and blessing to memorialize Jerry Garcia in his childhood neighborhood. From this, a long term relationship began where the local community was able to use his artwork to fundraise for the playground and to rename an amphitheater in his name, the Jerry Garcia Amphitheater. Our first Jerry Garcia / Excelsior event happened on September 19th, 2002 at the Italian American Social Club where we raised $5000 for the playground and called the event 'Jerry Shirt' after a shirt that was used as a fundraiser for the playground.
The following year, with the help of a few community members, we decided to keep the event going and moved it to the McLaren Park Amphitheater in 2003, renaming it 'Jerry Day.' From this we were able to rename the amphitheater to Jerry Garcia Amphitheater and host an annual Civic and Cultural Event for the City and County of San Francisco. After years of park revitalization, ongoing awareness, and community empowerment, we were recognized by the City and County of San Francisco, and were honored to win the Best Community Building event award in 2009.
Now in our 9th year, we are continuing to raise awareness and increase the production value of Jerry Day. Our main goals are still the same, raise awareness and a level of pride for the local communities, while we still honor our most famous native son, Jerry Garcia, the leader of the Grateful Dead and member of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Overall, Jerry Day plays a vital role in uniting the diverse and low income neighborhoods around McLaren Park, providing them with an opportunity to bring more attention and resources to their community.
In addition to this, we expose thousands of residents and travelers to various forms of art through music, art, and cultural history; while still staying true and authentic to Jerry's art, music, and his Excelsior roots.
Happy Jerry Day to all!