Happy Birthday Walt Whitman! A Bicentennial Celebration | Mechanics' Institute

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Happy Birthday Walt Whitman! A Bicentennial Celebration
Featuring readings, music, performance and song at DADA Bar

Mechanics’ Institute salutes American’s literary hero Walt Whitman for his 200th Birthday during Pride Weekend! The event includes a complete reading from the 1855 edition of Leaves of Grass (Song of Myself) and other selected works.  Director Dan Harder and Mechanics’ Institute Events Director Laura Sheppard have engaged local performers, poets and musicians to be part of this staged reading including members of renowned San Francisco men’s chorus Conspiracy of Beards led by Daryl Henline, actors Ryan Hayes, Greg Meyer, Dixon Phillips, Danielle Thys and Steven Winn. Special guests include Kathleen Antonia, Peter Maravelis, and poet Mason J., and musicians Anne Goess (violin) and Michael Irwin (banjo).  The audience will be invited to jump in and participate in the reading as well.

Be there at 6:00 pm for birthday cake and a Walt Whitman look-alike contest! Readings and performance start promptly at 6:30 pm. DADA Bar provides a gracious, charming Old World atmosphere for this community gathering and celebration.

Walt Whitman (1819-1892) whose actual birthday is on May 31, is truly the heart, soul and voice of America.  The evening highlights Whitman’s seminal poetic work, Leaves of Grass, which is a declaration of all that we hold dear—democracy, diversity, freedom of expression, sexual and gender equality, and the strength, beauty and preciousness of this land, nature, and citizens of our country.

 His birthday will be celebrated at venues across the country during the year. What better time to celebrate the inspirational words of Walt Whitman and the role of the poet!

“I celebrate myself,

And what I assume you shall assume,

For every atom  belonging to me as good belongs to

You.”  -- Walt Whitman



DADA Bar, 65 Post Street, SF


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