An Empire Day Ferry Trip to Oakland — Emperor Norton's "Summer Capital"
On the morning of 17 September 1859, Joshua Norton walked into the upstairs office at 517 Clay Street — between Montgomery and Sansome — and handed George Fitch, editor of the San Francisco Daily Evening Bulletin, a proclamation declaring himself "Emperor of these United States." Fitch printed the proclamation in that evening's edition.
With this single act, Norton founded a borderless Empire of the heart that continues to the present and into the future.
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Two September 17th's ago, The Emperor's Bridge Campaign launched a new holiday to celebrate the occasion.
We called it Empire Day.
This year — our third Empire Day — we're marking the occasion with a Sunday afternoon ferry trip and family-friendly outing to Oakland.
It often goes under-appreciated — or simply escapes notice — that, for many years, Emperor Norton hopped the ferry and visited Oakland once a week. No doubt, he saw the visits as part of his diplomatic duty.
But, by all accounts, the Emperor harbored a genuine affection for Oakland — indeed, he is said to have considered it his "summer capital."
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So, it's long past time that the Campaign made Oakland a destination. This will be our first event in Oakland — the city that anchors the eastern end of the Emperor's bridge.
We'll take the ferry from the Ferry Building, sailing under the Emperor Norton Bridge. The Emperor — as played by our good friend Joseph Amster — will be on hand for the proceedings.
Once we reach Oakland, we'll make our way to the Plank beer garden, on nearby Jack London Square. The menu features burgers and appetizers. For adults, there's a full bar and a nice selection of local beers on tap. For kids — and for all the kids at heart — there is bowling, bocce, billiards and arcade games.
We'll take the return ferry at sunset, for a lovely view of the Bay Lights and the twinkly San Francisco skyline.
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For Emissaries of the Empire — members of the Campaign — round-trip ferry passage is free, courtesy of the Campaign. So, if you want to travel to Oakland like the Emperor did — for free — make sure your Emissary card is up to date. You can join or renew here. (All others can buy ferry tickets in the usual way — see here and here.)
We extend a special welcome to our friends and supporters in Oakland and the East Bay. If you've been unable to join us for our previous events in San Francisco, we hope to see you in Jack London Square on Empire Day!
Here are the details...
EMPIRE DAY FERRY TRIP & OUTING TO OAKLAND
Sunday 17 September 2017
Gather at 3 p.m.
At the Bay Crossings shop in the Ferry Building (location).
Emissaries (members) who wish to get free round-trip tickets must
be here promptly at 3. Please bring your Emissary card with you.
Ferry departs for Oakland at 3:30 p.m.
From the South Terminal (Gate E), on the south end of the Ferry Building
Arrival in Oakland (Jack London Square) at 4:05 p.m.
At Plank — in Jack London Square — from 4:15 to 6:30 p.m.
Ferry departs for San Francisco at 7 p.m.
Emissaries (members) who wish to get free tickets are asked
to join us on the walk over from Plank at about 6:30 p.m.
All others can buy tickets on the ferry (one-way fare schedule here).
Arrival in San Francisco (Ferry Building) at 7:25 p.m.