Cesar Chavez (1927-1993) was a world-renowned civil rights leader. He is best known for his efforts in campaigning for the fair treatment of farm laborers and ethical agricultural practices in general. In the 1970s, he spoke at Davis Central Park rallies in support of tomato growers' strikes. One such gathering in 1974 drew as many as 2000 people.
An annual Cesar Chavez Celebration has taken place in Davis' Central Park since 2001. It is usually scheduled to occur on the closest Saturday to his birthday of March 31st, so as to coincide with the weekend Farmer's Market.