San Francisco Cultural Sites
San Francisco Cultural Sites are revealing of local politics, but powerful in capabilities. The result is greater opportunity for resident and tourist alike to better engage in the rich cultural diversity of the city. If you only have a few hours however, Museum of the African Diaspora and the African American Art & Culture Center are must-visits.
Museum of the African Diaspora
DESCRIPTION: Art & History museum and cultural center
Martin Luther King Memorial Waterfall
DESCRIPTION: A lovely organic to Yerba Buena Gardens and Fountain, the memorial is the interplay of a long horizontal structure with a waterfall cascading from a 30-foot drop in front of Dr. King’s “I Have A Dream” speech. In keeping wit the cities diverse residents and tourists, his speech is written in several languages that visitors see as they walk under a peaceful waterfall.
DAYS & HOURS: daily, sunrise to sundown
ADDRESS: Yerba Buena Gardens between 4th, 3rd, Howard & Mission Streets, San Francisco MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: BART-Muni Metro Montgomery Street Station
PARKING: garages on Third Street
Lorraine Hansberry Theatre
DESCRIPTION: This small theatre honoring the great Lorraine Hansberry, features works from famous African-American playwrights; also features plays by August Wilson, including King Hedley, II. Founded in 1981 by Stanley E. Williams, LHT made nomadic performes around the city for seven seasons. In 1988, LHT’s first home opened in the Landmark YWCA building at 620 Sutter Street. LHT then relocated its business office to 777 Jones Street in Nob Hill. When the building on Sutter Street was sold, it resumed performing in various venues around town, albeit upgraded facilities like Yerba Buena Center for the Arts and African-American Arts & Culture Complex in Fillmore District.
BOX OFFiCE: visit their website
ADDRESS: Admin Office 777 Jones Street, San Francisco; group performs at various venues in SF
RAPID TRANSIT: n.a.
Robert Moses Kin
DESCRIPTION: Founded in 1995, this nationally renowned dance company is recognized for its artistic excellence and choreographic innovation; frequent collaborators with important artists in dance, music, poetry, and visual arts, RMK is dedicated to moving the art forms of dance and performance forward.
BOX OFFiCE: see website
ADDRESS: 870 Market Street, Flood Building, San Francisco MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: BART-Muni Metro Powell Street Station and Powell Street Cable Car
PARKING: garages on Fourth Street and Mission Street
African American Art & Cultural Center
DESCRIPTION: Manages by the African-American Historical & Cultural Society, this community center and library is multi-faceted but single in purpose. It organizes, interprets and celebrates the historical and cultural achievements of black folk in San Francisco. Towards its mission, the AAACC displays important works by black artists, including Sargent Johnson to name only one. AAACC features dance programs, art programs, lectures, and poetry readings throughout the year. Call for days and hours. The resident African-American Shakespeare Company provides a place for actors of color to hone their talent mastering some of the world’s greatest classical roles and open classic theatre to a diverse audience. Each winter, it hosts Kwanzaa, MLK and Black History Month events. Each summer, it serves as one anchor point to the Fillmore Jazz Festival and as host to the AfroSolo Festival. Soon it will be the permanent home to Marcus Books San Francisco, one of the oldest black bookstores in the nation.
ADMISSION: Free for most events, fee-based for special events; donations always welcome.
DAYS & HOURS: varies depending on event
ADDRESS: 762 Fulton Street, San Francisco MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: none
PARKING: on street
Bayview Opera House
DESCRIPTION: This community cultural center and venue for African American theatre was also the city’s first opera house in 1888. It hosts a Drama Academy, Children’s Mural Program and the Ruth Williams Memorial Theatre.
ADMISSION: Free for many events, fee-based for special events; donations always welcome
DAYS & HOURS: call for calendar of events
ADDRESS: 4705 3rd Street, San Francisco MAP
RAPID TRANSIT: Muni Metro Third Street/Oakdale/Palou Station
PARKING: on street