Since 1969, UC Davis has celebrated the annual Whole Earth Festival from Friday to Sunday the second week of May, promoting wellness, art and the environment.
The UC Davis Quad will be filled with arts and crafts tents, live music, food vendors and educational spaces from May 10 to 12. The free, zero-waste, student-run festival is a self-sustaining ASUCD unit and made possible by a large team of volunteers, who have been working since January.
“We have entertainment from throughout the county, including educational speakers, yoga masters, artists and crafts vendors,” said Chris Hong, a UC Davis alumnus and Whole Earth publicity spokesman. “Our event invites a diversity of visitors from children to the elders, mixed races and ethnicities, and people with various religions and traditions. We love the diversity that the festival brings, and how we all share a common viewpoint or ideology and love for this Festival.”
Though the weekend is alcohol-free and advertised as drug-free, some festival goers are known to partake in illegal drugs.
“We are aware drug use happens at these festivals. We will arrest or cite those who abuse the law,” said Lt. Glenn Glasgow of the Davis Police.
Though Whole Earth is a significant event for Davis, it does not have the same regulations and complications as Picnic Day has. There is no safety enhancement zone and there are no increased penalties for breaking the law.
“We don’t experience an increase of calls for service in the city, so it is not needed,” Glasgow said.
Members of the Davis community say the festival doesn’t have the dramatic impact on downtown that Picnic Day does. Those involved in the Davis Farmers Market, for example, observed Whole Earth as a friendly and undisruptive event over the past few years.
“There are no people getting out of hand on Whole Earth; they are all peace and love,” said Randii MacNear, the market manager of the Davis and UC Davis Farmers Markets.
MELISSA GAHERTY can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.