Berkeley celebrates People’s Park anniversary

Residents and visitors to the San Francisco Bay Area can celebrate the 49th anniversary of People’s Park in Berkeley Sunday.

The celebration starts at noon and lasts until 6 p.m. at the park, which is about a half block east of Telegraph Avenue between Dwight Way and Haste Street.

The celebration will include music, dancing, speakers, free vegetarian/vegan food and drinks.

People’s Park was founded in 1969 after what “was the most violent confrontation” in the University of California at Berkeley’s history, according to information from the Oakland Museum of California.

The park, which was a muddy, three-acre, garbage-ridden parking lot then, came only to be after students and residents confronted police, university officials and even national guard units in a struggle that left one man dead, another blind and more than 100 wounded.

Museum historians said when people around the world say the word “green” to mean environmental ethic, it’s wise to remember that the struggle to create People’s Park-with trees, grass and swing sets-came at a cost.