San Francisco’s grandest Easter morning tradition, begun in 1923, returns this year on Sunday, April 17 at 6:30AM. This year’s citywide celebration atop the City’s highest peak will mark the 99th anniversary of the event. Featured at the free Service will be speakers offering an Easter message, prayers and greetings, including Alex Leniv of St. Michael’s Ukrainian Orthodox Church in San Francisco. Local clergy presiding at the non-denominational service include Rev. Jeff Mammen of New Life Church, Rev. Mesrob Ash of St. John Armenian Apostolic Church, Ivan Wachter of San Francisco Christian Center and Rev. Toby Kurth of Christ Church San Francisco, who will deliver the Easter message. The program will also feature musicians such as Lynne Miller of The House of Bagpipes.
Situated at the summit of Mt. Davidson (elevation 938 ft.), the historic 103-foot-tall cross will once again be illuminated by spotlights throughout Saturday evening April 16th, shining as a beacon for Easter morning. (Note: great location shot at the corner of Robinhood Way and Lansdale Avenue on Saturday night).
Sponsored by local churches and broadcast nationally in years past, the Easter Sunrise Service attendance record was set during World War II, with an estimated 50,000 worshippers in attendance.
Originally dedicated by President Franklin D. Roosevelt in a transcontinental ceremony in 1934, the 103-foot-tall Mt. Davidson Cross has been restored and lit by the Council of Armenian-American Organizations of Northern California, owners of the monument.
With the sun rising over the East Bay hills, Mt. Davidson Park’s beautiful forest setting serves as a spectacular backdrop for this cherished Easter event. Adding to the visual appeal of the panoramic view of San Francisco Bay and the downtown skyline at dawn is the dazzling springtime array of wildflowers currently in bloom.
Special bus service on Muni’s 36 line will begin at 5:30 a.m. and run every 15 minutes from Forest Hill Station to the park gate located at the intersection of Lansdale Avenue, Myra Drive and Dalewood Way – two blocks south of Portola Drive. Call (415) 673-MUNI for further transit information. Those planning to attend Easter Sunrise 2022 are advised to dress warmly and wear comfortable walking shoes for the walk to the summit. The park entrance across from 39 Dalewood Way affords the easiest route to the top. For more details, call (415) 564-7535.
Enjoy early movie footage of this tradition from the 1920s provided by the Western Neighborhood Project, KQED Bay Curious Podcast: Why there is a cross on San Francisco’s highest peak, and this video of the Cross history: Mount Davidson: San Francisco’s Hidden Treasure.