-Margaret Brodkin, Director, Department of Children, Youth, and their Families (DCYF)
We are pleased to announce that 30,574 San Franciscans participated in our second annual Family Appreciation Day on January 7, up by 3,500 from last year. Many of the 36 Participating Attractions broke attendance records as San Francisco families with children made their way from site to site. The diversity of the crowd was a factor noted by Participating Attraction personnel. All have indicated a desire to participate again next year.
Parents commented that the day made them “feel special” and “included in city thinking” and “happy to be able to spend a day with my kids.”
San Francisco families with children seem to like animals! The most popular venue was the San Francisco Zoo (5283) followed closely by the Aquarium of the Bay (4900). A complete list of attendance by attraction follows.
The 36 Participating Attractions included both non-profit organizations and commercial venues in every corner of the City: Chinatown, Civic Center, Financial District, Fisherman’s Wharf, Golden Gate Park, the Marina, Mission, Presidio, Richmond, Sunset, and Yerba Buena. Families enjoyed art, science, and history museums; walking tours of Botanical Gardens, Victorian houses, Symphony Hall, and Mission murals; and seeing cable cars, boats, and sea lions up close and personal.
While there were some lines at some locations, no major problems were reported. Participating Attractions reported good gift shop and snack shop sales. Many parents took advantage of the generosity of MUNI that “kids ride free” for the day.
Parents will be able to use the San Francisco Family Attractions Guide - which was distributed at each venue – to plan more outings throughout the year. We will also make the guide available to families at events and Town Hall meetings throughout the year.
We feel that the goals of San Francisco Family Appreciation Day were well met: • To give a day to San Francisco families • To provide an opportunity for all children to enjoy our world-class venues • To suggest to parents that an outing to a San Francisco family attraction can be a positive experience • To make local museums and other attractions aware of the diversity of San Francisco families
Plans are underway for Family Appreciation Day 3 in January 2008.