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Indybay Feature
View other events for the week of 12/29/2018
People's Park Candlelight Vigil
Date Saturday December 29
Time 2:00 AM - 4:00 AM
Event Type Vigil/Ritual
Organizer/AuthorPeople's Park Committee
Location Details
People's Park
Bowditch, Dwight, Haste, and Telegraph Avenues
Berkeley, California
41 trees destroyed in People’s Park by UC Berkeley “deferred maintenance” in early morning of December 28. Apparently, they began at 3am. The entire east end forested region was decimated.

Oh Great Mother Earth! Oh Great Spirit! Please give us the energy to save People's Park from oligarchy!

Berkeleyside published this article about the action today:


Added to the calendar on Friday Dec 28th, 2018 5:12 PM
§Tree Stump – People’s Park, December 28, 2018
by People's Park Committee Friday Dec 28th, 2018 10:46 PM
Tree Stump – People’s Park
§Tree Maintenance in People’s Park – UC Berkeley statement 2018-12-28
by People's Park Committee Friday Dec 28th, 2018 10:54 PM
UC Berkeley statement

Comments  (Hide Comments)

by Darin
Saturday Dec 29th, 2018 5:18 PM
Please sign the petition and help save People's Park! We are asking for activists to have feet on the ground.
(Lisa Teague, Russell Bates and a man who did not give his name sat in front of three trees marked to be cut down. Photo: Frances Dinkelspiel)

By Emilie RagusoDec. 28, 2018, 6:30 a.m.

UC Berkeley started to remove about 40 trees from People’s Park early this morning, prompting outrage from the park’s community of activists and those without homes.

Tree chippers and work trucks pulled into People’s Park in Berkeley before 6 a.m. — during the university’s winter break — to take out the trees and prune a number of others.

The work “will address long-deferred maintenance needs at Peoples Park” and is “just one of 15 similar projects taking place across the campus during the winter break,” according to a prepared statement from the university. About 16 medium to large trees at the park, and 25 smaller ones, “will be removed down to grade level.”

Workers from Expert Tree Service started cutting down trees this without incident. However, the removal disturbed a number of those who make People’s Park their community, with at least three people saying they would face arrest to prevent the cutting of three trees on the south side of the park.

“They are killing the culture of the park,” said Russell Bates. “They are removing trees that don’t need to be removed. It’s like clear-cutting… without warning. This is sneaky.”

A UC Berkeley police officer predicted no arrests would be made. Instead, the tree company will leave up the three trees to avoid a confrontation, the officer said. [Editor’s note: The trees were not cut down.]

Tom Dalzell, who is writing a book on the 50th anniversary of the creation of People’s Park for Heyday, said the way the university started the cutting in the early morning hours during winter break was “backhanded.”

“They way they are doing it is so reminiscent of the way they (the university) dismantled that block back in 1968,” said Dalzell. “And what they did in 1969. The university is so arrogant and dishonest. You don’t do it this way. It is reminiscent of Reagan.”

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