Delta hosts ‘Stockton is Magnificent’ celebration

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PHOTOS BY MIDORI MORITA

Delta College’s campus hosted the fifth Stockton is Magnificent event on Saturday, April 2.

More than 100 organizations participated in the festivities including The Collegian and 20 other Delta-related booths.

Denise Jefferson, founder and director of Stockton is Magnificent said the team came up with the idea for this event, “when Forbes magazine designated Stockton as the most miserable city for the third time. I was the director for the miracle mile at the time and the merchants got together and said we’ve got to put a stop to this. … So we threw a party thinking it was just going to be that one time and it was a wonderful party … so we just continued it from there.”

Saturday’s event included 185 booths, 20 entertainment groups and 11 food trucks.

Residents and community leaders involved with the event put in countless hours.

“I think that one of the challenges for Stockton is there isn’t a sense of place in a lot of our residents and they aren’t connected to the city in any way and a city that doesn’t have residents who love the city isn’t successful,” said Jack Sanders, articulation officer for Delta and four-year Stockton is Magnificent volunteer.

One of the goals for Stockton is Magnificent is to highlight the businesses and groups that make this city unique and diverse.

“Downtown Stockton is a fabulous place it just needs to be rebuilt and it’s starting to happen … I see a revival,” said Sanders.

Since 2010, the event has grown at least three times its size according to Jefferson. The non-profit sees more volunteers and more organization participation with each hosting.

“I’ve seen people coming together more [over the past four years] and more people embracing … all the different cultures we have here in Stockton,” said Hillary Smuts, a four-year volunteer.

Now a well-known gathering, Stockton is Magnificent attracts hundreds of people, bringing awareness to all that is happening in the city.

“This shows Stockton is magnificent, that its not a miserable place, that there are a lot of great people and great things to do in Stockton,” said Smuts.

The amount of people and excitement at Saturday’s event commends how much work was put into it.

“Our mission is to promote the positive attitude in Stockton and we feel the outside’s never going to see us as positive until the inside also sees us as positive,” said Jefferson.