With an energetic blend of jazz, tap, and the Charleston – lindy and swing dancing comes to life at the Golden Gate Park – offering free swing dancing every Sunday when the weather permits. Tons of locals have flocked to John F Kennedy Drive (located between 8th and 10th Avenue in the Richmond District of San Francisco) to listen to a variety of DJ-inspired mixes and watch the vibrancy of dance unfold. Thanks to volunteer DJs that run Lindy in the Park – no two experiences are ever the same.
In August of 1996, the vision of ‘Lindy in the Park’ (or LitP, for short) was born, as Chad Kubo and Ken Watanabe believed in offering the public the ultimate swing dance party for free. In the San Francisco region, it is LitP that has become the longest-running swing dance “hot spot” in town. Dancers of all ages and levels gather in the park to enjoy the company of familiar faces and new acquaintances.
Integral players in the creation and development of Lindy in the Park includes:
• Ken Watanabe – co-founder and regular DJ with a swing dancing past that started in 1987. His concentration on Lindy Hop has blossomed since 1995. He’s also instructed swing dancing to a host of interesting participants, including Lucy Lawless of Xena the Warrior Princess fame.
• DJ Dave – A love of jazz brought Dave Wong closer to the world of Lindy Hop, which captured his interest in 1998. After taking dance lessons, he decided to learn more about the music.
• DJ Naomi – Cultivating an interest in swing music in 1998, Naomi become involved in organized events after taking lessons at the HiBall lounge.
• Hep Jen – With a specialty in Lindy Hop – Hep Jen also guides the public through an exploration of salsa dancing.
Every Sunday, Lindy in the Park is free for beginner lessons at 12:30pm. No need to even worry about bringing along a partner. You can also enjoy extra Lindy on Thursday nights at the 920 Special; Tuesdays at Swing Central (with a live band); Friday Swing & Lindy Hop Classes at UCSF Millberry Center with Hep Jen; and with LitP co-founder Chad Kubo on Saturdays at the Doghouse.
Lindy in the Park Events
Since February of 2006, the gang at Lindy at the Park has created the ‘LitP Routine,’ which is something new for those who’d like to have a bit of fun learning a couple of steps and participating in a swingout line. It’s certainly a sight to see and even more fun to enjoy, as the Jump Turns, Boogie Backs, and Shorty Georges get moving.