Strawberry Fields, a 2.5 acre section of Central Park in Manhattan, New York City dedicated to John Lennon, was officially opened on this day. 9 October 1985 would have been Lennon’s 45th birthday.
His widow Yoko Ono had donated more than $1 million towards the project and had conceived the idea. She attended the opening ceremony with her son Sean, whose 10th birthday also fell on this day.
Named after The Beatles’ song ‘Strawberry Fields Forever’, the entrance to the memorial was located on Central Park West at West 72nd Street, directly opposite the Dakota building.
A triangular piece of land, Strawberry Fields had as its main focal point a circular mosaic featuring the word ‘Imagine’. The memorial was designed by Bruce Kelly, the chief landscape architect for the Central Park Conservancy.
Strawberry Fields has since become a destination for Lennon fans wishing to mark the anniversary of his birth and death. Flowers, candles and other tributes are often left at the site, with floral arrangements often made in the shape of a CND symbol.
Also on this day...
- 2020: Celebrations take place for John Lennon’s 80th birthday
- 2017: New book! Riding So High – The Beatles and Drugs
- 2015: Ringo Starr live at Queen Elizabeth Theatre, Vancouver, BC, Canada
- 2013: Paul McCartney live at Frank Sinatra School of the Arts, New York
- 2011: Sir Paul McCartney marries Nancy Shevell
- 2010: Photograph of John Lennon is projected onto Liverpool’s Albert Dock
- 2010: “And the world will be as one”: Global tributes take place for John Lennon’s 70th birthday
- 2010: Yoko Ono requests a million tweets for John Lennon
- 2009: Yoko Ono unveils Imagine Peace Tower in Second Life
- 2000: Tributes for John Lennon’s 60th birthday
- 1998: Yoko Ono dedicates a tree to John Lennon in Strawberry Fields
- 1990: Imagine is broadcast around the world
- 1988: John Lennon tributes are broadcast on US television
- 1984: Yoko Ono donates $90,000 to Strawberry Field in Liverpool
- 1981: John Lennon statue is unveiled in Los Angeles
- 1980: John Lennon’s 40th birthday
- 1979: John Lennon’s 39th birthday party, Tavern On The Green, New York
- 1978: John Lennon’s 38th birthday party, Tavern On The Green, New York
- 1976: John Lennon’s 36th birthday
- 1975: Sean Lennon is born
- 1971: John Lennon’s all-star 31st birthday party in Syracuse, New York
- 1971: Yoko Ono’s art exhibition This Is Not Here opens in Syracuse, New York
- 1970: Recording: Remember by John Lennon
- 1970: John Lennon sees his father Alf for the final time
- 1969: Yoko Ono is taken to hospital in London
- 1968: Recording, mixing: The Continuing Story Of Bungalow Bill, Long Long Long, Why Don’t We Do It In The Road
- 1967: John Lennon’s 27th birthday
- 1966: John Lennon celebrates his 26th birthday in Spain
- 1965: The Beatles celebrate John Lennon’s 25th birthday
- 1964: Live: Gaumont Cinema, Bradford
- 1963: Radio: The Ken Dodd Show
- 1962: The Beatles promote Love Me Do in London
- 1961: John Lennon celebrates his 21st birthday with Paul McCartney in Paris
- 1960: Live: Kaiserkeller, Hamburg
- 1956: John Lennon’s 16th birthday
- 1940: John Lennon is born
Want more? Visit the Beatles history section.