Berkeley’s People’s Park celebrates its 44th anniversary

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Organizer Dana Merryday hoists peace flags above the People’s Park pergola. Photo: Ted Friedman

On Sunday Berkeley’s famous People’s Park marked the 44th anniversary of its founding with a celebration involving live music, kids’ activities and food, as well as a little political activism.

Organizer Dana Merryday had urged people to “mark the anniversary of this iconic and sometimes controversial social experiment.” He promised “political action with an emphasis on Drones, dancing, prayer flag making, great free vegan meals from Food not Bombs, drum circle and good vibes.”

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The Funky Nixons open the People’s Park 44th anniversary celebration at 12:30pm on the ‘people’s stage.’ Photo: Ted Friedman

People’s Park was created during the height of Berkeley’s radical political activism in 1969. Today it is principally a daytime sanctuary for the city’s homeless population who, along with others, receive regular meals from East Bay Food Not Bombs. The park also features an organic community garden as well as a ‘people’s stage.’

Berkeleyside contributing photographer Ted Friedman was at Sunday’s event to capture some key moments.

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Crowds enjoyed listening to the live concerts on a sunny day. Photo: Ted Friedman

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Llamas from Circle Home, a ranch in Sonora, head home after dropping in for People’s Park 44th birthday party. Photo: Ted Friedman

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Children watch a traditional dancer perform. Photo: Ted Friedman

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People’s Park celebrates its founding every year and usually draws a number of indy bands. Photo: Ted Friedman

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  • Mel Content

    Looks like the ol’ cannabis psychosis is setting in on one geriatric flower child…

  • Pietro Gambadilegno

    Mel Content fails in reading comprehension.

    Read the comment very slowly and carefully, and you will see that she says:

    “At the time, the university was wanting to build a sports field there.
    Would that have been the better option? Looking at People’s Park today
    (and never have had the nerve to walk in there), I have to say yes.”