Employees enjoy train rides to and from the UC Davis Health System's own Thank Goodness For Staff picnic luncheon, held June 4 at the center's special events site, at 45th and X streets, a few blocks south of the hospital. Some 3,400 lunches were served during the staff-appreciation event, which also featured 15 crafters booths, a rock-climbing wall, DJ music and an inflatable-game batting activity. More than 180 volunteers -- including top health system administrators and managers -- staffed the 18th annual celebration, this year themed "Carnival of Cultures." Attendance was up about 15 percent from last year, said Steve Gutierrez, Staff Assembly chair at the medical center, where more than 5,000 career staff members work. "This was the first time we included activities, like the rock-climbing and batting skills game. It worked out well. People really participated, and it was fun," he says.

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Amy Agronis, Dateline, (530) 752-1932, abagronis@ucdavis.edu

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