Valley Focus: Celebrate Vintage Days at Fresno State

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fresno State students are getting ready for Vintage Days 2018. The three-day festival is April 20-22 on the Fresno State campus. Ramiro Merino Diaz, the student director of Vintage Days and development coordinator Erin Paz joined Valley Focus host Margot Kim in the ABC30 studios to discuss what's in store. The following are excerpts of the interview which aired March 18, 2018:

Margot: I certainly have fond memories of Vintage Days. Tell us how it's changed over the years.

Erin: So, originally, Vintage Days started off as more of an agricultural festival. I think it started off as a raisin festival, specifically. So, over the years, it's really kind of morphed into a much bigger, more inclusive community event.
We really try to get out student organizations. We get out people from the community, local businesses, vendors, other organizations. Non-profits, things like that are all involved in the process.
Margot: What are some of the fun events that families can expect?
Ramiro: Some of the fun events that we're so excited to be doing this year -- we're gonna be having a free showing of "Coco." And that's really, really exciting.
We definitely want the community to come out, bring a blanket, bring your family members just to have a really, really good time. We're bringing back a virtual-reality truck. That's gonna be really
interesting. We've never had that before. So we're excited for that, as well. Just different types of food and different types of activities that families can enjoy.
Margot: Yeah. And this all benefits Fresno State and the organizations on campus.
>> Mm-hmm.
>> Tell us how Vintage Days
gives back to those
>> So, one of the main ways we do that is -- we have student organizations, sororities, fraternities, clubs on campus. A lot of them will have food and game booths come out, and that's their biggest fundraiser for the

year. They're there all three days, doing their various activities, selling food, drinks. And that's how they prepare for their upcoming activities for the next year. And then we also have volunteer
opportunities, where students and also other student organizations come out, and they help with, like, clean-up, setup.
And that's another way that they give back to their campus.
Margot: And this is one of the largest events that's strictly run by students, right? Both of you are students.
>> Yes.
Margot: What are some of the things that you've learned, Ramiro?
Ramiro: There's so many. I could go on forever. But I think the most things that I've learned -- it's just the skills on how to, like, network with community members, how to network with campus resources,
how to work with a lot of different types of students and really put on an inclusive event that really just brings the whole community together. So a lot of, like, leadership and teamwork and communication
skills that I've learned and gained and developed over the years.
Margot: Yeah. And, Erin, it's not just for college students. It's a family-friendly event, right? We want families to come, bring their kids...
Erin: Yes. So, the first time that I went out to Vintage Days, I actually wasn't a student. So that was one of my first experiences with Fresno State as a whole, and it just, like, blew my mind and I knew I had to be a
part of it. And so now I am. And it was -- It's been an amazing experience, and we really like to have families come out. I've brought friends. I brought my family that one year.

And then we all try to bring out our friends and family, as well. And I say that -- That's primarily who shows up to Fresno State for Vintage Days is the families and friends of students, but also past Fresno State alumni that maybe
they don't come out to Fresno State as often as they'd like, but they remember, "Oh, I went to Vintage Days. That started while I was in school" or "I was a part of it back when I was a student, and I'd really like to get out
there." And that's another way they stay in contact with Fresno State.
Margot: Tell us about the entertainment.
>> Yeah, we have a performance stage. We'll have a free live performance the whole weekend of Vintage Days. So, we try to bring as many different performances, acts, dancing, just to really integrate the community and
really provide them a well-rounded amount of entertainment. So, we're really excited for that.
Margot: Yeah. And, Erin, tell us about the logistics -- admission, parking, all that good stuff that we need to know how to get there.
Erin: So, both parking and admission are completely free. Fresno State -- they have a lot of parking all around different access points into Vintage Days. It's completely open. You can come from all different sides of campus.
And it is free to enter. You kind of just walk on, and you can come from all the different sides. You can come in from, like, the kid-zone area. You can come in from the food-booth area.
And most of our activities are free. Like Ramiro said, going into the concert stage -- all free for Fresno State students and the community.

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