Full Schedule Set for Mandela : South Africa: Fund-raisers, rallies and the keys to L.A. are planned for anti-apartheid leader when he visits later this month.
When he crosses into California on the last leg of a grueling, eight-city U.S. tour, anti-apartheid leader Nelson Mandela will become the star attraction at mass rallies inside sports coliseums, at elegant fund-raisers and on the steps of Los Angeles City Hall.
From a $1,000-a-head reception to a march by students, admirers are expected to flock to events in hopes of catching a glimpse or hearing the words of the black South African activist freed just four months ago after 27 years of imprisonment for opposing white-minority rule.
Mandela is scheduled to arrive in Los Angeles on the morning of June 29. He leaves early the next day for Oakland, where he will stay for about 12 hours before departing for Europe.
The 10-day U.S. tour starts in New York on June 20 and will include Boston, Washington, Atlanta, Miami and Detroit.
News that Mandela was coming to the United States unleashed a frenzied competition among politicians, supporters and others who wanted to honor or be host to him. The demand, say organizers, has been tremendous, complicating the frantic and confused preparations for Mandela’s hectic itinerary.
Several of the cities that were chosen for Mandela to visit submitted schedules that included up to eight events a day, according to one organizer. Over the last few days, members of an executive committee that is overseeing the tour have been struggling to pare down plans--and expectations.
“It’s a big fight,” said a coordinator. “Everybody wants to have it happen the way they want it. . . . It is a testimony to the esteem in which people hold him, but it is not realistic.”
Concerns about security, which is being handled by the U.S. Department of State, and the delicate health of the 71-year-old leader may also force some cuts in the schedule, organizers say. Mandela recently underwent surgery for removal of a benign cyst.
The U.S. visit is part of a 14-nation journey to press for continued sanctions against the white South African government and to raise money for the cash-strapped African National Congress.
In Los Angeles, Darlene Donloe, a spokeswoman for the local Mandela Reception Committee, cautioned that many parts of Mandela’s schedule are still “up in the air.” But the events are shaping up, tentatively, this way:
After arriving on the morning of June 29, Mandela and his entourage will motorcade from Los Angeles International Airport to City Hall, where he will meet with Mayor Tom Bradley and speak to the City Council. Then, Mandela will be presented with keys to the city at a noon public ceremony on the steps of City Hall. Aside from the motorcade, this will be the only free public access of the day.
In the afternoon, Mandela will hold a series of private meetings at the Biltmore, possibly with members of the local African National Congress chapter and religious figures.
A fund-raising reception, with tickets costing anywhere from $1,000 apiece to $50,000, will be held at the armory in Exposition Park at 7:30 p.m., while a concert and rally at the 90,000-seat Coliseum gets under way about 8 p.m. The event, titled the “Mandela Freedom Celebration 1990,” will feature Quincy Jones and other prominent musicians. Mandela is scheduled to address the gathering at 9 p.m.
Separately, a coalition of student groups and black trade unionists plans to march from Jackie Robinson Park along Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard to the Coliseum to attend the rally. The march is scheduled to depart at 4:30 p.m.
Tickets for the Coliseum rally will cost $10. A Mandela hot line has been set up to give information on where the tickets can be purchased. It also will have updated information as it is available. The number to call is (213) 281-3184.
For the reception, organizers are sending thousands of announcements to movers, shakers and followers in the entertainment industry, the business world and church and labor groups, inviting them to purchase tickets. It is not yet clear how many seats will be available for the reception.
“As soon as the invitations go out, I’m sure we will be deluged,” said Judy Levy, a partner with Levy, Pazanti and Associates, which is handling the tickets. “There’s been a lot of interest.”
For information on the reception tickets, the public may contact Levy’s firm at (213) 386-8014.
In Oakland, Mandela is scheduled to address a rally and concert at noon on June 30 in the Oakland Coliseum. Mandela’s wife, Winnie, will speak at a separate engagement honoring women at the Community Theater in Berkeley. Tickets to both the rally and the Berkeley event are $5 and can be purchased through the B.A.S.S. ticket service.
That evening, a fund-raising dinner is planned at the Oakland Hyatt Regency, with plates starting at $100. Seating is available for up to 2,000 people. To reserve tickets, call (415) 655-6606.
Organizers of the Mandela tour chose to sidestep San Francisco because an exhibit at the M. H. de Young Memorial Museum is sponsored by Royal Dutch Shell oil company, which has substantial holdings in South Africa, a source said.
San Francisco Mayor Art Agnos has been quoted as having urged the museum to find another sponsor.
Here is the tentative schedule for the rest of the visit:
The Mandela tour starts with his arrival at JFK International Airport in New York on June 20. There he will be honored with a noon ticker-tape parade in downtown Manhattan and a City Hall ceremony. His New York tour will include a motorcade through Harlem, an appearance at a church service, a rally at Yankee Stadium and private fund-raisers.
On June 22, he is scheduled to address the U.N. General Assembly.
The next day, he heads for Boston. He will stop at Madison Park High School in Roxbury to give his blessing to a teach-in on the situation in South Africa for about 1,500 youths and their parents.
A motorcade then takes him to the John F. Kennedy Library where Sen. Edward M. Kennedy (D-Mass.) is holding a luncheon. That afternoon, Mandela will address a free public rally at the Esplanade entertainment center.
A fund-raising reception is scheduled at the Copley Plaza Hotel at a cost of $5,000 per couple.
Mandela next plans to spend three days in Washington. A meeting with President Bush is set for 11 a.m. on June 25. That afternoon, he is to meet with Secretary of State James A. Baker III and later with the Executive Council of the AFL-CIO.
On June 26, Mandela is scheduled to have breakfast with the Congressional Black Caucus and speak to a joint session of Congress at 11 a.m. A rally is scheduled for that night at the D.C. Convention Center.
Mandela flies to Atlanta on June 27, where he will place a wreath at the crypt of civil rights leader Martin Luther King Jr. and receive honorary degrees from several predominantly black universities, including Morehouse College. That night, there is a rally at Georgia Tech’s Grant Field.
On the morning of June 28, Mandela reaches Miami for a speech to the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees convention at the Miami Beach Convention Center. He leaves immediately for Detroit, where he plans to visit an auto assembly plant and speak to a rally at Tiger Stadium.
Times researchers Lisa Phillips in New York, Edith Stanley in Atlanta and Anna M. Virtue in Miami contributed to this article.