January 10, 2012 in Nation/World

San Francisco launches Golden Gate anniversary


SAN FRANCISCO – The city on Monday launched a yearlong 75th anniversary celebration of the opening of the iconic Golden Gate Bridge with a string of parties, guided tours and festivals to be held along the waterfront graced by the burnt- orange span since 1937.

“The Golden Gate Bridge stands today as a testament of innovation and imagination, a bridge built by the people during the Great Depression,” said Janet Reilly, president of the bridge district board.

She and dozens of other civic leaders, national parks officials, bridge authorities and supporters spoke before a backdrop of the bridge set against a crisp, blue winter sky.

Authorities, however, won’t be inviting the public to walk en masse along the storied bridge that marks the opening to San Francisco Bay.

Instead, there will be fireworks, a boating parade, and music and dance performances. Guided night tours will begin in April, and tourists can visit a newly constructed 3,500-square-foot museum and a café that serves local food. There also is enhanced signage along hiking trails in the mountains surrounding the bridge.

“The bridge is not the stage this time; rather, the community will come together to celebrate this engineering wonder,” Reilly said.

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