International Clash Day, an annual celebration of the seminal UK punk band, got its start a few years ago when John Richards, the morning DJ on Seattle's KEXP-FM, arbitrarily declared Feb. 7 to be Clash Day.
This year, Kent will host a wide array of events stressing the importance of "the urgent need for social justice and the fundamental importance of the freedom of expression." Organizers have just announced the details for the event, which has expanded to three days.
“We found out that we had too many cool opportunities this year, and we simply couldn’t do it all in one day,” says Zach Schiller, Kent's Clash Day organizer and an assistant professor of sociology at Kent State University, in a press release. “It speaks volumes about the sense of community in Kent. Since last year, we’ve seen a growing and deepening war on women. Therefore, proceeds from all fundraising will go toward organizations in Kent that are taking action to address issues of gender injustice on many levels. This includes the Kent chapter of Planned Parenthood, United Students Against Sweatshops Local #27, Akron Food Not Bombs and Kent Books to Prisoners.”
Two Kent businesses will offer exclusive products. MadCap Brew Co. will feature a special Clash Day beer dubbed Combat Bock. Bent Tree Coffee will offer Revolution Roast, an artisanal coffee made for Clash Day, which will be featured throughout the week. In addition, Bent Tree will stream KEXP’s Clash Day broadcast all day for its patrons. A portion of the proceeds from both offerings will go to this year's non- profit organizations.
Taco Tontos will feature special Clash Day menu items and have Combat Bock on tap. It'll stream KEXP’s Clash Day programming all day. Clash Day 2019 t-shirts feature a design by Kent comic artist Jay Geldhof. They'll be available at the Kent Stage, EuroGyro, Water Street Tavern and Zephyr Pub events.
At 6:30 p.m. on Feb. 7, the Kent Stage will screen the 2007 documentary Joe Strummer: The Future Is Unwritten
, and the Kent State University Library will host a book launch party for Jason Prufer's Small Town, Big Music
at 6 p.m. on Feb. 8. That same day, the Pogues tribute act the Boys from County Hell will play a special tribute to the Clash at 7 p.m. at Water Street Tavern.
“I believe the 2019 Kent celebration of International Clash Day is the most expansive of any participating city other than the founding city,” says Schiller.
In addition, Kent Mayor Jerry Fiala will recognize the celebration with an official proclamation.
Events will take place throughout Kent. Find a complete schedule here