A proposal is in the works to turn a slice of the Castro into a “gay walk of fame,” featuring a collection of plaques honoring LGBT luminaries. The strip would officially be called the “Rainbow Honor Walk.”
The Chronicle’s City Insider blog reports that project co-chair David Perry says the plaques could be approved by the Civic Arts Commission and installed by the end of the year.
The idea was first proposed by Isak Lindenauer, a Castro resident and merchant, and taken up by former supervisor Bevan Dufty.
Here’s a video of the vote on the project last March by the San Francisco Board of Supervisors’ Land Use Committee, to which Dufty and Lindenauer explain the origins of the project and the ideas behind it.
So…who will the first honorees be?
The Bay Area Reporter has the list:
- Allen Ginsberg
- Keith Haring
- Jane Addams
- Yukio Mishima
- Bayard Rustin
- Sylvester James
- James Baldwin
- Frida Kahlo
- George Choy
- Federico Garcia Lorca
- Harry Hay
- Del Martin
- Randy Shilts
- Tom Waddell
- Gertrude Stein
- Oscar Wilde
- Tennessee Williams
- Virginia Woolf
- Christine Jorgensen
- Alan Turing
Conspicuous by his absence is Harvey Milk. The reasoning behind the omission, from the Bay Area Reporter:
…numerous city buildings and public amenities have been named after (Milk), and outside his old camera shop and campaign headquarters at 575 Castro Street sit two historical markers honoring Milk. It is because of those plaques, reasoned the honor walk backers, why Milk didn’t need to be included in their list of names.
Update Feb 8 Project co-chair David Perry dropped us a note:
Thanks for the blog post RE the Rainbow Honor Walk. One correction however: it was in 1994 that I floated the idea for the first time at which point the idea was also approved by the Board of Supes in 1995. The idea never achieved momentum however until Isak, independently proposed the same idea in 2009. At that point, Supervisor Dufty suggested we join forces. Since then, our combined efforts have led to renewed interest and support, resulting in last week’s announcement of the first 20 names. We hope it is the first of what will be dozens over the years.