After 15 months of wondering when this day would ever come, the city has officially reopened. And if you also missed out on a ticket to see La Doña perform at Stern Grove, there are plenty of other things to do around town. 

Juneteenth

Declaring Juneteenth a national holiday doesn’t change many of the harsh realities the Black community faces every day. To address the racial disparities which still exist in San Francisco, a Juneteenth kickoff rally will be held from noon to 3 p.m. on Thursday, June 17 at City Hall. 

The event is hosted by Wealth and Disparities in the Black Community. See details here: https://www.facebook.com/events/3914575071961738/  

At 5 p.m. on Friday, June 18, the eve of Juneteenth, sculptor Dana King will unveil 350 sculptures representing the first Africans sold into slavery in 1619 at the Music Concourse in Golden Gate Park. The sculptures will surround the spot where Francis Scott Key’s statue was toppled by protesters last Juneteenth. 

At the same time, words from the Black national anthem, “Lift Every Voice and Sing” by James Weldon Johnson, will be elevated atop the Spreckels Temple of Music. 

There will be jazz, African drumming, choir singing, as well as remarks from Mayor London Breed. Read more about donating to and attending the event here: https://www.monumentalreckoning.org/ 

On Saturday, June 19, at 12:30 p.m., a Juneteenth celebration will be held outdoors at the Bayview Opera House at 4705 3rd St., with performances on the outdoor stage for the first time since the pandemic began. Highlights include a fashion show, spoken word poetry, and of course, music. Read details about the event here: https://www.eventbrite.com/e/juneteenth-at-bvoh-tickets-153078214059 

Also on Saturday is Juneteenth: A Rainbow Revival, an evening of musical performances starting at 3 p.m. as part of the month-long Bluegrass Pride Queer-antine festival, Porch Pride. 

The event will feature Sunny War, Jake Blount, Yasmin Williams, Faith Nolan, Jackie & Resa, Stephanie Anne Johnson, and Lenworth O’neal. Brandi Pace of the non-profit Decolonizing the Music Room curated the show, which will highlight the essential contributions of Black queer, trans, and nonbinary people to bluegrass music and the Pride movement. 

Read more about the shows and upcoming events here: http://bluegrasspride.net/porchpride 

Mission Cultural Center for Latino Arts

From Thursday to Saturday, live dance performances will be hosted for a small audience at the reception for The Just In Case Woman, a dance installation exploring “the changing roles, responsibilities and expectations of women in our fast paced, complex, and unsteady world.”

Read about the event and the upcoming installation, which will be open June 24 to July 17, here: https://missionculturalcenter.org/event/the-just-in-case-women/ 

On Friday, the MCCLA Theatre is playing a documentary film, Shamanes en la Ciudad, which “reveals the unforgettable journey of three spiritual, iconic characters of the Mission District.” 

Produced by an all-Latinx crew, MCCLA invites you to “collectively manifest clarity and silence in a city with noises and distractions.” The showing will begin with a spiritual blessing from the elder and teacher Concha Saucedo. 

Although the live show is sold out, the film will be available for free on Saturday, June 19 on the MCCLA Youtube account

Go dancing again 

Balkan Sundays are back! On Sunday, June 20, the Balkan Sundays House Band will play some “hot brass” at Zeitgeist, and anyone versed in Balkan music is welcome to join in the jam. Don’t worry if you don’t have an instrument, just grab a beer and dance. This event will be held on the third Thursday of every month. 

Watch movies in public again 

The San Francisco Black Film Festival kicks off Thursday, June 17, with a film screening at the Century San Francisco Centre 9 at 845 Market St. Other films will play throughout the weekend at the Metreon at 135 4th St. and the Fillmore Heritage Center at 1330 Fillmore St. Highlights include Blackness is Everything, a short film celebrating the Bay Area’s Black diaspora, and The Night it Rained, in which a queer college student has to make difficult choices to pay for school. 

See the film and party lineup here: https://www.sfbff.org/ 

For the 45th annual LGBTQ+ Film Festival, outdoor, drive-in, and in-theater film screenings are happening around the city, including at the Mission’s Roxie Theater. Tickets for live shows are limited but streaming passes are available. For more information, visit https://www.frameline.org/festival 

At the historic Grand Theater at 2665 Mission St., Gray Area is reopening with two shows in its CineChamber: a “360° surround adventure in immersive sound, spatial cinema and sensory strangeness.” 

The shows, by Recombinant Rebound, include works by 16 artists including Burial, Fennesz, and local artists Paul Clipson, Scott Arford, and Naut Humon, and will transport viewers between “haunted metro stations, abstract alienscapes, and earth-orbiting satellites.” 

For more information and to purchase tickets, visit: https://grayarea.org/recombinant-rebound/ 

Take live classes again 

Dance Mission Theater is rolling out in-person classes, though outdoor and online classes will continue. The first indoor class will be a weekly Dance Fusion with Tika Morgan starting this Saturday, June 19, at 10:30 a.m. Morgan is a full-time instructor of contemporary & Latin dance with 20 years of experience. 

Sign up in advance at DanceMissionTheater.org to reserve your spot and check for new classes being added. 

The Community Music Center’s Mission branch is also reopening to 50 percent capacity in-person learning, including limited outdoor space for wind and voice lessons. Private and group classes are available for students of all ages, in “everything from Western classical to Chinese to Latin Music” on over 30 instruments. They’re offered on a sliding scale and some are completely tuition-free. 

Current students should have received information about the summer quarter by Monday, June 14, and new students can make an appointment with the registrar. Read more about the reopening here: https://sfcmc.org/enrollment/summer-reopening/ 

Next weekend 

For its “one final event of the season,” Brava Theater will host a live and in-person show next weekend, June 24 to 26. Not My First Pandemic is a one-man show starring César Cadabes, a 2021 artist-in-residence at the Queer Cultural Center. 

Cadabes plays a gay Filipino man who comes to San Francisco and “discovers his most empowered self with a community that helps him survive the AIDS pandemic and enables him to thrive during the COVID pandemic.” 

To read more and purchase tickets, visit: https://www.brava.org/all-events/not-my-first-pandemic 

And of course, reserve your (still free!) spots for upcoming Stern Grove performances. The 4th of July reservations will be available this Tuesday, June 22 at 2 p.m. here: https://www.sterngrove.org/ 

Eleni Balakrishnan

Eleni is our reporter focused on policing in San Francisco. She first moved to the city on a whim over eight years ago, and the Mission has become her home. Follow her on Twitter @miss_elenius.

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