The theatrics and trash talk will take over Dignowity Park at 700 Nolan St. from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. [Saturday, July 26] for the fourth annual derby, an event that has helped define a new chapter in the historic East Side neighborhood.
“It just goes to show there’s a demand for cool events, but it is going to take doing crazy stuff like the pushcart derby,” said event founder and organizer Cruz Ortiz, who added the neighborhood’s houses are “are so beautiful but so neglected.”
An artist and activist, Ortiz and his family moved to Dignowity Hill about five years ago and wanted to help clean up the neighborhood instead of besides [sic] constantly calling the police and code compliance departments. He described the project as “art activism,” a way to bring the neighborhood together and raise awareness of the East Side and its development.
As the event has grown to at least 12 teams competing and hundreds of spectators expected, its structure has been changed to a head-to-head format to allow for more races and more room on the racecourse, said Mary Cantu, derby manager.
The term pushcart is used loosely, organizers said, and past entries have included a shopping cart, a giant chicken piñata and a couch with wheels.
Wednesday, July 23, 2008
The Dignowity Hill Pushcart Derby
Pushcarts are all the rage in an East Side neighborhood, as Elaine Ayo from the Express-News reports.