Associated Students Program Board will keep the Extravaganza music festival local this year by banning all non-UCSB attendees.
Extravaganza, slated for 1 p.m. on May 15, will be open exclusively to UCSB students, faculty and staff in an effort to eliminate overcrowding seen in previous years. While ASPB plans to release this year’s lineup in about two weeks, hip hop artist Cee Lo Green announced earlier this month on his website he would be performing at the festival.
Special Events Coordinator Ali Abbas, a third-year political science major, said the theme of this year’s concert is “your fees, your festival.”
“The fact that we are not allowing out-of-towners will mean a better experience for the students,” Abbas said. “They are really our priority.”
ASPB Commissioner Rae Yamamoto, a fourth-year black studies and art history major, said this year’s changes directly address student complaints.
“After last year’s Extravaganza, Program Board received many complaints about the lines, the crowd and overall safety of the event,” Yamamoto said in an e-mail. “To remedy the students’ issues, we changed our policies.”
Santa Barbara City College second-year Anne Gumina said the event’s exclusivity spares her from suffering through a potentially disappointing lineup.
“I chose not to see [Cee Lo Green] at Coachella and I would choose not to see him at Extravaganza,” Gumina said. “Cee Lo Green … more like go ‘Cee’ Al Green, ‘cause he’s better, and you really can’t make sincere love to ‘Fuck You.’”The festival will be held at its traditional venue, Harder Stadium. Yamamoto said ASPB hopes this year’s modifications will make the day more enjoyable for UCSB students.
“Many students complained about the lines, having to wait hours just to get into the festival,” Yamamoto said. “By limiting the festival to UCSB only, we hope to create a more efficient system of entry.”
In addition, Yamamoto said last year’s crowds caused several safety hazards for attendees and put dangerous stress on the area’s emergency services.
“Last year, there were no ambulances available in the county for two hours because they were all at Extravaganza to aid the concert-goers,” Yamamoto said. “Most who were in need of paramedic assistance were out-of-towners.”
Despite the exclusivity of this year’s festival, Abbas said he encourages the public to attend ASPB’s many other open performances.
“We’re sorry that community members can’t participate in this event, but we have many other concerts and events that are open to the public,” Abbas said.
ASPB helped coordinate the upcoming Chilla Vista festival, a showcase of local music and art which will be held in Ansiq’ Oyo’ Park on May 1 at noon.
Yamamoto said the future of Extravaganza is yet to be determined pending students’ reaction to this year’s festival.
“I think any changes made will be determined after we see how this year goes,” Yamamoto said.
Students, faculty and staff members will be required to present an ACCESS card to enter the festival.