Tiny Golden Gate Park door captures imagi­nations

A wee little door that’s appeared in a tree at Golden Gate Park’s Concourse has captured the imagination of locals and beyond.

And understandably so. It’s frickin’ adorable.

Standing barely 12 inches tall, the arched wooden door appeared at the base of an elm tree near the DeYoung Museum and Academy of Sciences about a week ago.

No one knows who installed it or why, and it’s probably better that way. Its mysterious origin is the stuff of “Lord of the Rings”-type lore, and it’s quickly becoming the park’s latest attraction.

Some speculate it houses squirrels, elves, gnomes or fairies. Others think it’s a portal a la “Alice in Wonderland.” Patrons are even leaving notes and gifts for the tree’s otherworldly inhabitants.

Pictures of the itty-bitty door surfaced on the Richmond District Blog recently, where it became the site’s most popular topic ever. Its editor Sarah Bacon called the door a delightful and magical gift:

“We’re thrilled by the response to the story [on the blog]—I think it’s proof that everyone has a child inside that enjoys whimsy and fantasy.”

And park officials aren’t planning to spoiling the party, either.

Andy Stone from the San Francisco Parks department said “the elf door” will remain for now.

And perhaps the most lucid insight about the door’s charm comes from a young boy who posed to NBC Bay Area:

“Who wouldn’t like a little door in a tree?”