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UC Davis Centennial
100 years of service, solutions, impact
Graphic: Map of the state fair

UC Davis landmarks at the state fair. (Russ Thebaud/UC Davis)

What we are exhibiting at the fair

Walk with us through UC Davis’ “Dream Big” exhibition at the state fair. [ more… ]

About the state fair

Get the facts on when, where and how much it is for admission and parking. [ more… ]

Celebrate at the fair

‘Dream Big’ exhibition kicks off our centennial year


The California State Fair (and the UC Davis Centennial pavilion) opens Friday, Aug. 15, and continues daily through Labor Day, Sept. 1.

The university’s exhibition is titled “Dream Big,” showcasing scholarship and research in food and agriculture, energy, the environment, health, community building and global understanding.

The fair hours are 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Fridays, Saturdays, Sundays and Labor Day, and noon to 10 p.m. all other days.

The “Dream Big” exhibit launches a yearlong celebration of 100 years of UC Davis history — dating from the 1908-09 academic year when the first students came to live on campus.

“A special year lies ahead,” Chancellor Larry Vanderhoef wrote in an e-mail to alumni and campus friends. “I hope you’ll join us in toasting our 100th year of doing what matters to California and to the world.”

After the state fair, the celebration comes home for the 2008-09 academic year — and the arrival of the Centennial Class of new freshmen and transfer students.

Instruction is set to begin Thursday, Sept. 25, one day after the chancellor’s Fall Convocation.

The convocation is scheduled from 10 to 11 a.m. Sept. 24 in Jackson Hall at the Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. This year’s theme is “A Century of Doing What Matters” — in the region, the state, the nation and the world. Speakers chosen by the chancellor will represent faculty, staff, students, alumni and the community.

A reception in the Corin Courtyard and Sconyers Plaza, outside the Mondavi Center, will follow the convocation program.

The centennial celebration continues in October with the Fall Festival:

Friday, Oct. 10

  • RMI grand opening — The Davis campus’s newest building, the Robert Mondavi Institute for Wine and Food Science. 10 a.m., open to the public.
  • Pajamarino — Held in conjunction with homecoming weekend, the 2008 Pajamarino will mark the 96th year of jammie-clad students welcoming back alumni. 7 p.m., Amtrak station, 840 Second St. Followed by the homecoming bonfire.
  • Distinguished Speakers Series — Jeffrey Toobin, CNN senior legal analyst and staff writer for The New Yorker: One-Hundred Years — A Look Inside the Supreme Court. 8 p.m., Jackson Hall, Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets: (530) 754-2787 or (866) 754-2787, or

Saturday, Oct. 11

  • Golden Society Brunch — For alumni who graduated in 1958 or earlier. 10 a.m., AGR Room, Buehler Alumni and Visitors Center. Register here or call (530) 752-0286 or (800) 242-GRAD (4723).
  • Academic Showcase — Classes without quizzes! 10 a.m.-2 p.m., various locations around campus. Free and open to the public.
  • Homecoming football — Aggies vs. Southern Utah, 6 p.m., Aggie Stadium. Tickets: (530) 752-1915 or

Sunday, Oct. 12

  • Run for Your Lives — 5- and 10-kilometer run-walk to raise money for heart health and environmental health, the former via the UC Davis Vascular Center and the American Heart Association, and the latter through tree plantings on the Davis campus. 8 a.m., on courses that will wind through the arboretum and other parts of the campus before ending at the Heart and Tree Health Pavilion at the Celebrate UC Davis! street fair. Put your name on an e-mail list for registration information, by e-mailing
  • Celebrate UC Davis! — A street fair hosted by the Davis Chamber of Commerce, recognizing the university’s ties to the city of Davis and the larger region. Noon-4 p.m., Third Street.
  • Ballet folklorico — Instituto Mazatlán Bellas Artes de Sacramento. 3 p.m., Jackson Hall, Mondavi Center for the Performing Arts. Tickets or call (530) 754-2787 or (866) 754-2787.

Wednesday, Oct. 15

  • Centennial Walk’s unveiling — The walk through the middle of the Quad is being rebuilt at twice the width of the old, with decorative granite and embedded bronze letters denoting “Centennial Walk” at both ends. Noon.
  • Side-by-side festivities on the Quad — The Student Activities Faire and Davis Chamber of Commerce Day, during which city businesses introduce themselves to the student body. 10 a.m.-2 p.m.