Open House attendees at the Poly Royal Rodeo

Open House has its origins as "Farmers' Picnic" which was the first open house event on campus. On May 24, 1904 about 200 visitors came to tour new buildings, watch Ag shows, and eat BBQ. In 1913, Farmers' Picnic attracted 3,000 people and in 1933 the administration made plans to create "A Country Fair on a College Campus." They named it Poly Royal. 

On March 31, 1933 Cal Poly had its first ever Poly Royal event. There was a parade, livestock judging, agriculture shows, horticulture exhibits and, of course, the enjoyment of a BBQ in Poly Grove. The day ended with a Poly Royal Dance in Crandall Gym. Poly Royal grew to be one of the main events on the campus social calendar and truly embodied the learn-by-doing philosophy that Cal Poly represents.

Cal Poly Open House - Poly Royal road sign
At the 2nd Annual Poly Royal event parents, alumni, prospective students, and community visitors were welcomed to join in the celebration. In 1944, Poly Royal was downsized to a one-day event. Poly Royal also had annual themes and a guest of honor each year. Soon, the selection of the Poly Royal Queen became a much-anticipated event. Large crowds formed to watch the parade and see the new queen. 

In 1990, an unruly crowd of 1,000 people vandalized several stores and residences. Arrests were made and damages repaired, but Poly Royal was in jeopardy. For the next four years Cal Poly had no Poly Royal event. 

In 1994 Open House was born with approval from President Warren Baker. Open House is a culmination of Farmers’ Picnic, Poly Royal, some new events, and the addition of Admitted Students' Preview Day to provide a showcase weekend for the University. Newly admitted students, their supporters, parents, current students, faculty, alumni, friends, and community members are invited to come experience all that Cal Poly offers.


 Past Open House Posters & Themes

Open House 2017 Poster   Open House 2016 Poster   Open House 2015 Poster  
2017   2016   2015  
24th Annual Open House   Celebrating the Mustang Legacy   This is the Mustang Nation  


Mary Johnson



Jillian Ray



Patricia Lee

Open House 2014 Poster   Open House 2013 Poster   Open House 2012 Poster  
2014   2013   2012  
All That Glitters
Green & Gold 
  Celebrating 20 Years    Green and Gold Rush    
Casey Lovano
Kate Johnson
Anna Castenholz
Open House 2011 Poster   Open House 2010 Poster   Open House 2009 Poster  
2011   2010   2009  
Polywood    To Cal Poly
and Beyond! 
  Design Your
Alex Carter
Jeannie Nguyen
Donna Clark
Open House 2008 Poster   Open House 2007 Poster   Open House 2006 Poster  
2008   2007   2006  
Cal Poly!
  Explore Cal Poly:
Begin Your Adventure
  Cal Poly:
Choice of Champions
Kim Claytor
David Wong
Brandon Collins
Open House 2005 Poster   Open House 2004 Poster   Open House 2003 Poster  
2005   2004   2003  
Oceans of
Cal Poly
  Treasuring Royal Traditions  
Jessica Greenwalt
Stephanie Chu
Open House 2002 Poster   Open House 2001 Poster   Open House 2000 Poster  
2002   2001   2000  
Passport to Poly   Open House Presents Poly Royal   The Power of Poly  
Reagan Reynolds
Open House 1999 Poster   Open House 1998 Poster   Open House 1997 Poster  
1999   1998   1997  
Breaking New Ground   Poly Classic   Beyond Your Wildest Dreams  
Open House 1996 Poster   Open House 1995  Poster   Open House 1994  Poster  
1996   1995   1994  
Imagination, Explortation, Celebration   Avenues of Innovation...Roads to Discovery   A Foundation for the Future  

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