Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Universally Human Pics are Up!

Once again, we can't thank everyone enough who made Universally Human possible.  Our neighborhood hosted about 1,500-2,000 people throughout the day and they experienced what a great place Deer Park and Vinton Street are!  We have posted a few pictures from the event, thanks to Jim Lamb of Blacksheep Photography.  Please visit Deer Park Neighborhood on facebook to see many more!

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Bicycle Fashion Show

Don't miss out on the bicycle fashion show at the Bancroft Street Market (10th and Bancroft) tomorrow, May 18 at 6 p.m.  Enjoy a little handlebar happy hour at The New Old Bar across the street at 4 p.m.

Friday, May 11, 2012

Here we go...

Building the walls for the graffiti show tomorrow!

Festival Tomorrow!

The Universally Human festival is almost here!  Thank you to everyone who has put in countless hours preparing this awesome event.  For those of you not familiar with the neighobrhood, Vinton is located south of Martha.  Please see the map above and see you tomorrow!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Take a look at the stage!

You can't take a look at the actual stage because it isn't up yet, but Vinton Street from 17th to 19th streets will be closed down bright and early Saturday morning.  In the meantime, you can start dreaming about some awesome performances by Midtown Marauders d.j.'s, Spence Love, Flawl3ss, Mission Man, Disguise, Poncho and the Contra Band and The Basement Dance Studio.  Don't miss out on the fun!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Announcing Saturday's Line Up....

We have quite the spread for Saturday!  Come to the festival to see your fellow merchants and neighbors.

Alejandro Barrales
The Basement
Big Brothers Big Sisters
Boys and Girls Club
Building Bright Futures
Deer Park Neighborhood Association
Eastern Nebraska Community Action Partnership
Girls Inc.
Grace University
Habitat for Humanity of Omaha
Hope Center for Kids
Kent Bellows Studio
Latino Literacy Center of the Midlands
Lucky’s Vintage
Metropolitan Community College
Nebraska Appleseed
Omaha Coalition of Citizens Patrol
Omaha Urban Neighborhoods
United Methodist Hospital
Victory Boxing
Vinton Community Center
The Way Home

4 More Days!

I can't believe the festival is almost here!  DPNA has been received more entries and we are so excited to work with groups like Latino Center for the Midlands, Grace University, Hope Center for Kids and many more.  What will YOU be doing this Saturday?  Coming to the festival, of course!

Friday, May 4, 2012


Universally Human welcomes youth across the city to experience different alternatives to keep them active. About three blocks of historic Vinton Street will be shut down and dedicated to Universally Human from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, May 12.

The idea behind Universally Human arose after the Deer Park Neighborhood Association (DPNA) helped organ­ize Deer Park’s first community mural, quickly followed by hosting Omaha’s first Urban Art competition, Abstract Concrete, at the Bancroft Street Market last August.

After Abstract Concrete proved to be a success, the participants craved more and Duran got many requests to host another competition.  Instead of feeding the needs of just one category, the Deer Park Neighborhood Association and Habitat for Humanity decided to open the doors to individuals across the city as part of their Neighborhood Revitalization Initiative. 

“The youth in our area have a lot of different talents and urban art is just one of the talents.  There are a lot of creative programs in our community that could help youth showcase their abilities.”
The artists’ mediums will not be the typical canvas backdrop; Habitat for Humanity’s ReStore is donating repurposed materials to create masterpieces.  Universally Human will line the sidewalks of Vinton with a variety of oth­er youth driven groups and organizations that offer our city’s youth opportunities to share their talents.

Victory Boxing will be a knock out with live demonstrations on a portable boxing ring.  Local break dancers will put their own spin on the festival with dancing, demonstrations and lessons.  The Creative Institute and Kent Bellows will also be artistically contributing to the festivities.  Participants can also compete in creative writing competitions and poetry slams.  Everyone can also experience the local flair of Vinton Street restaurants from burgers to barbacoa as well as a historical walking tour of the area.

 “Our youth can be exposed to lot of positive activities in Omaha, whether it be sports, art or writing at Universally Human,” said Duran.  “The kids who are already participating in these projects will be given a chance to show the community what they can do.”

Universally Human has a few merchant booths open and are inviting all organizations with youth outreach programs or have an interest in youth to apply.  Booths are also available for local artists to sell their work.  To register, please contact Katie Duran at or 402.459.0042 by Wednesday, May 9.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Victory Boxing Fights For Something Bigger

It’s one thing to be a boxer.  It’s another to be boxing in honor of the big guy.

Victory boxing strives to keep kids off of the streets and in the boxing ring.  Founder Servando Perales works from personal experience; he was going down the path of drugs and gang participation in the 1990’s when he was arrested and served time in prison.  However, Perales paid his dues and came out with the unlikeliest conclusion; he had found his faith and wanted to use it to prevent others from going down that same path and getting into more trouble than he did.

Perales was still into boxing but decided to not do it for himself anymore.  God had given him a gift and he wanted to share it with others.  He wanted to provide a safe haven for kids to have opportunities for something positive in their lives instead of running on the streets.

Victory Boxing hosts about fifty individuals everyday for two hours.  When you walk into Victory Boxing, it’ not your stereotypical ring on tv.  There’s no negativity, no swearing, no bullying.
In one corner, a group of about ten young men are doing synchronized sit ups, pushing each other to get better.  In another corner, each are swinging at heavy bags.  Perales encourages a lone boxer in the ring while perfecting his technique.  The other coaches are also encouraging the young men as they get better and better each day.

Victory Boxing improves their boxing skills but it also teaches the youth about discipline, community and respect for one another.  After practice once a week, the coaches offer a voluntary bible study but many students choose to participate.

Come see Victory Boxing at Universally Human and participate in their mobile boxing ring.

For more information on Victory Boxing, visit their website at 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Universally Human Invites Local Artists, Vendors

The Universally Human countdown is on!  Only 11 more days until historic Vinton Street in near-south Omaha transforms into a youth hub.  Join us each day as we highlight one of our awesome vendors at the show.

There are still a few booths available for the festival. We are searching for groups that offer programs to our youth but we are also looking for area artists to sell their masterpieces whether it be crafts, jewelry, plants, you name it!  Please contact Katie Duran at for more information.