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    Volunteers Needed for the 27th Annual Pink Triangle

    By Patrick Carney–

    The 27th annual Pink Triangle of Twin Peaks needs a lot of volunteers in order to make it happen. Please help get the word out. SF Pride arrives early—this project is being set up in May, not June.

    We need volunteers to help on these days: 

    • Tuesday May 24, Wednesday May 25, and Thursday May 26 at 10 am to set up infrastructure including the poles, cable, ratchets, and tension straps for the lights and pink streamers;
    • Saturday May 28 & Sunday May 29 at 10 am for the installation of shiny pink streamers and the 200-foot-long sailcloth borders around the display;
    • Wednesday June 1 setup for the Pink Triangle Commemoration Ceremony on Twin Peaks. Setup starts are 5 pm and the ceremony starts at 8 pm; the lighting is at 9 pm. It will be preceded by the pink torch procession that will start at Oakland City Hall with Mayor Libby Schaaf and make its way escorted by members of Dykes on BikesÒ to San Francisco Mayor London Breed atop Twin Peaks for the lighting. The procession will include assistance and special encouragement from the Sisters of Perpetual Indulgence and CHEER SF, the city’s official cheerleading team. The San Francisco Lesbian/Gay Freedom Band (official band of San Francisco) and cabaret singer Leanne Borghesi will be performing at the ceremony. Mayor Breed will hold the pink torch in one hand and push the giant pink triangular shaped button with the other to illuminate the display. Last year, House Speaker Pelosi joined Mayor Breed to hold the torch, push the button, and light up the display.
    • Site Ambassadors are needed in short shifts for a month to protect the display (as you may recall it was set on fire in 2009 by arsonists).

    The annual pink triangle installation atop San Francisco’s Twin Peaks is going to be a little different this year. Now that volunteers are allowed to congregate in larger groups again, the daytime presence of the pink triangle will be back, but it takes a lot of people to put it up. 

    The daytime presence is being changed. Instead of the pink tarps that have traditionally been used, this year there will be more than 1 1/2 miles of bright shiny pink streamers that will be hung in rows below each of the 43 rows of LED light strands, as well as hung on the three sides of the triangle. The pink streamers won’t be flat on the ground; they will be up in the air. The layers of hanging 10-inch-long streamers may appear as fringe, like the Roaring 20s Art Deco fringe flapper dress. As the streamers blow in the wind, the shiny surface will lightly reflect and sparkle over the city. It’s an experiment this year that we hope will be dramatic and highly visible during the daytime. It should be dragalicious.

    The lights will take over as darkness descends on San Francisco, ensuring that the symbol remains visible day and night—for the entire month of June. 

    Visibility is essential as the display is a giant in-your-face educational tool. It is a reminder and a warning of what can happen if hatred and bigotry are allowed to become law. The Pink Triangle was originally used to brand suspected homosexuals in Nazi concentration camps. It was revived in the 1970s as a symbol of protest against homophobia, used in an inverted form as a rallying and protest symbol during the height of the AIDS crisis (Silence=Death), and has been used to symbolize LGBTQ+ Pride ever since. Part of appreciating and celebrating any Pride is understanding where we have been, and the Pink Triangle illustrates how bad things can get.

    Burning Man’s Velvet Cabal, a collective of LGBTQ camps at that event, will be helping to install the poles, steel cables, ratchets, and the LED lights.

    It will be illuminated again thanks to the masterminds behind the Bay Lights, the illumination of the SF-Oakland Bay Bridge, the arts nonprofit Illuminate and its Founder & Chief Visionary Officer Ben Davis.  

    This is a community-building event. Here is a 2022 sign up link with many volunteer opportunities: https://tinyurl.com/nhbaxbsu

    Patrick Carney is the Founder of The Friends of the Pink Triangle. The group, with the help of many dedicated volunteers, constructs a gigantic pink triangle on Twin Peaks each year during the last weekend in June. Carney, who worked on the restoration of San Francisco City Hall, was appointed to the City Hall Preservation Advisory Commission in 2013.

    Published on May 19, 2022