SENIOR STAFF REPORTER
The University of Nebraska at Omaha’s annual Durango Days kicks off the school year with a packed schedule of social events, entertainment and something all students love – free food.
For new students, Durango Days is a great way to get acquainted with all things UNO, whether it’s the campus or the community. With many students making the transition from high school to college, Maverick Village resident assistant Emily Snyder stresses the importance of new students getting involved on campus right from the start.
“Participating in these events is important because you get to meet new people,” said Snyder. “UNO has a really strong sense of community once you start getting involved.”
The student involvement director, Bill Pickett, helps to organize the events being held this week. He believes the purpose of Durango Days is to get students acclimated to campus and allow new students to feel comfortable during a time that can be just as intimidating as it is exciting.
“I think Durango Days is most important for first year students, teaching them about UNO and being a part of the Maverick family,” Pickett said. “For the upper-class students, it’s a nice treat for them to return and get a bunch of free stuff and food.”
Speaking of food – events on Tuesday, Aug. 22 kick off with Walking Taco Tuesday. From 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., bring a MavCard to enjoy a free walking taco lunch in the Pep Bowl. Gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian options will be available and student involvement will be giving away prizes.
Other Tuesday events include:
• Fitness 101 in the H&K building: 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
• Free popsicle by the Criss Library: 1 p.m. to 4 p.m.
• Slow Roll Bike Ride, which starts at 4 p.m. on the south side of the student center plaza.
• The first 600 students to show their MavCards will receive a free pizza buffet dinner at Aksarben Village’s Godfathers: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
• After dinner, the first 600 students to arrive between 6 p.m. and 8 p.m. to Aksarben Cinema will receive a free movie ticket.
• Free chicken nuggets and chips will be available for lunch in the
Pep Bowl and over 200 student organizations will have booths set up: 11 a.m.
• A part-time job and volunteer fair will be held in the Community Engagement Center: 1 p.m.
• Two options for a free dinner are available Wednesday: one at the Newman Center for a BBQ and the other at PotBelly. Both locations will have live music.
• Get to Know the O! at the H&K gym: 11 a.m.
• Transportation showcase: H&K building plaza: 11 a.m. Trek Bicycle Omaha will be on hand to provide free safety inspections on bicycles brought to the event.
• The LGBTQIA+ Social in the MBSC Ballroom: 5 p.m. to 7 p.m.
• #GLOatUNO: 8 p.m. to 11 p.m. in the Pep Bowl.
• Later that night, Target will be opening its doors after closing hours just for students: 10 p.m. to 12 a.m.
• Join Fraternity and Sorority Life members at 5 p.m. in the Pep Bowl to learn more about Greek Life at UNO.
• Come to Caniglia Field at 6 p.m. to watch UNO’s Men’s Soccer team take on Grand Canyon University. UNO’s Women’s Soccer team takes on Northern Iowa starting at 8 p.m.
• Mavs After Dark: 9 p.m. to midnight in the H&K Building.
Mavs after Dark is UNO senior Adriana David’s favorite Durango Days event.
“I love meeting new people and doing unique things,” David said. “I meet a lot of people there that I
wouldn’t otherwise meet so I’m really excited.”
• Fraternity Omega Psi Phi hosts a blood drive and video game tournament from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. in the MBSC ballroom.
• Mav Motor Show: 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Baxter Arena
• Stand Up Paddle-boarding from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. at Cunningham Lake. All equipment and instruction is included for $30. To sign up, visit shopwellness.omaha.edu.
Durango Days provides a wonderful welcome – or welcome back – to UNO. For more information, visit UNO’s website.