The UC Santa Cruz Good Neighbor Initiative Program will present a free Community Arts Festival at Abbott Square--outside the Museum of Art & History in downtown Santa Cruz--on Saturday, May 11, from 12 to 3 p.m.

Designed to help connect the UCSC campus to the city of Santa Cruz, the student-run festival will feature two popular campus a cappella groups: The Hightones and Cloud 9; student bands including Fossil Traits, Echo Street, and The Weatherveins; and UCSC dance groups such as Tangogroupe (tango) and Fusion (Indian Dance).

A variety of student-led workshops will also be available to the public. Members of each performing music group will teach songs and harmonies from their repertoire, and dance troupe members will offer a group dance class.

Student artists will additionally host a number of workshops, including stamp-making, ink-blowing, and button-making.

The event is the brainchild of UCSC senior Shane Liliedahl, a participant in the Chancellor's Undergraduate Internship Program.

Liliedahl is one of two interns in the campus’s Good Neighbor Initiative Program—established in 2004 to foster positive relations between students and the Santa Cruz community.

A music major, as well as the musical director for Cloud 9 A Cappella, he came up with the idea for the festival, figured out how to do it, and is now coordinating the event with the help of two interns from the Museum of Art & History.

“The event is family-friendly and suitable for all ages,” says Liliedahl. “In fact I would love it if families would come, because that's exactly how I envision the festival.”

“My role in the Good Neighbor Initiative is to represent the program and the campus in the city of Santa Cruz,” he added.

“I'm attempting to establish better relations between the two, which means attending city events, attending Santa Cruz neighborhood meetings, and helping out with the annual block parties. I've been involved since last June.”

Liliedahl added that his co-intern in the program, Delphine Wartelle, has been hosting a series of successful off-campus housing workshops at UCSC, where she has been educating students on laws and responsibilities related to living in the local community.

The Community Arts Festival is made possible by the UCSC Art Department and the Good Neighbor Initiative. For more information, call (831) 459-1768 or email gnintern@ucsc.edu.