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Family-Oriented Fairy Shrimp Festival Makes its Debut on Saturday, April 22

April 12, 2006
Shrimp Feed Also Hosted to Raise Funds for Student Government

The Office of Student Life at UC Merced invites everyone to join in a celebration of the creative spirit and sustainable living at the first-ever Fairy Shrimp Festival on Saturday, April 22 from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

In conjunction with the free festival, students will host an all-you-can-eat shrimp feed and silent auction from 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. to raise funds for the Associated Students of UC Merced with a dance to follow immediately afterward.

“We are launching what will become an annual springtime event, with a program designed to showcase both the arts and environmental issues in a fun and family-friendly atmosphere,” said Jim Greenwood, Fairy Shrimp Festival coordinator and student affairs officer. “This is a great opportunity to bring the campus and community together for a festival that we hope will continue to grow and evolve over the years.”

Thirty artists hailing from Los Angeles to the Central Valley to the San Francisco Bay Area have already reserved booths to show and sell their handmade jewelry, paintings, pottery, dolls, clothing, stoneware, blown glass creations, Native American and South American art, and more. Hands-on arts and crafts activities are planned to engage the younger crowd.

According to Greenwood, booth space is still available for artists who wish to participate in the festival and have not yet signed up.

Coinciding with the national observation of Earth Day 2006, this year’s festival also introduces a focus on environmental concerns. Representatives from UC Merced and civic organizations will be on hand to promote environmental awareness, describe campus and community environmental stewardship initiatives and share tips on sustainable living.

Rounding out the event will be live music performed by popular Merced band Deriva, campus tours, refreshments and a bounce house for children with energy to burn.

Students also are tying into the theme of the day by presenting an all-you-can-eat shrimp feed and silent auction held to raise money for UC Merced’s newly formed student government. The events will take place in the California Room, located just a few steps away from festival headquarters. Serving as the hosts are candidates in UC Merced’s inaugural student body elections, planned to begin April 24. Additional support has been received from the Sunrise Rotary Club, the San Joaquin Valley UC Alumni Network and others, according to student Marsha Bond, one of the event’s coordinators.

Open to the campus and community, the shrimp feed will offer guests all the shellfish they can eat in one visit, while the silent auction provides a chance to win prizes including theater tickets, fishing equipment, scrapbooking supplies and much more. Shrimp feed tickets will be available at the door for a cost of $10 for UC Merced staff members and students, $20 per person for non-staff/students, $35 per couple and $45 for a family with two adults and two children.

Following the festival, shrimp feed and auction, students encourage everyone to head back to the California Room from 9 p.m. to 11 p.m. for a dance, featuring a lively mix of music in an alcohol-free setting.

Artists interested in securing booth space at the Fairy Shrimp Festival are encouraged to contact Jim Greenwood at (209) 205-0873 as soon as possible.

Tickets for the shrimp feed can be purchased at the door. Everyone attending the shrimp feed can receive a wristband allowing them free entry to the dance. For additional information about the shrimp feed, auction and dance, please contact Marsha Bond at (209) 205-8569.