25th anniversary of Hands Across America

On May 25, 1986, approximately 6.5 million people held hands for 15 minutes and formed a human chain that stretched across the continental United States. This benefit event and publicity campaign raised millions of dollars that were donated to local charities fighting poverty, hunger and homelessness.

This year marks the 25th anniversary of that event and on May 25 the public is invited to commemorate the spirit, optimism and commitment of the original participants. Through this commemoration, event organizers seek to inspire renewed interest in the continuing problems of hunger and homelessness and galvanize a new generation to take much needed action today.


When: Wednesday, May 25

The event begins at 11:30 a.m. PDT with guest speaker Ken Kragen, the original chairman of USA for Africa and the driving force behind Hands Across America along with other Americans whose lives were changed that day. At 12:00 p.m. PDT, exactly 25 years later, participants will create a symbolic reenactment of the beginning / end of the line.

Space is limited and just 400 tickets are available for the public. Interested attendees must RSVP by emailing handsacrossamerica25@gmail.com.

Where: Queen Mary, Long Beach, CA

More Information:

Facebook: http://www.facebook.com/handsacrossamerica  


  1. LarryInLA says:

    I can't believe that Hands Across America was 25 years ago. It was the most amazing experience. I'm going to go to the event in Long Beach on May 25th. I think we all can use a little bit of inspiration. These problems still exist and maybe people can lift their spirits by thinking about this kinder, gentler time…

  2. Jim Gilbert says:

    Hi Larry – thanks for sharing your thoughts about this event. I didn't participate 25 years ago, but I certainly remember it taking place and from what others tell me it was a moving and memorable experience. If you do plan on attending the Queen Mary event, be sure to RSVP to the email address in my post.