All posts by Joe Kurtz

DIY Valentine Workshoppe and Curators Talk


Image result for heart png

Make unique and personal valentines for your special someone. Caesandra will provide an assortment of: fancy papers, stamps, ink, glitter, tools, stencils, GLITTER, punch-outs and embellishments.

When: Friday, February 10th @ 5:30pm to 8pm

Where: University Heights Community Laboratory [9 West Northrup Place Buffalo, NY 14214]

No automatic alt text available.
Several pop-up options and templates will be available. $2 will cover the materials for each card. You can also purchase vintage valentines and decor, order chocolates and other items. 

In addition…at 6:30pm museum curator, Caesandra, will share her talk The Art & Science of Smooching. Finger Foods & Cocoa provided. A film may follow… stay tuned!

Get Handy: A Homeownership Workshop [March 4th @ 10am]

GET HANDY is a free DIY homeownership workshop presented by West Side & Black Rock-Riverside NHS that provides the experienced and first-time homeowner a chance to expand their education to promote DIY repairs featuring some of Buffalo’s grassroots-organization such as:

Grassroots Gardens: Worms & Soil Testing
PUSH Green: Green Energy Efficiency Options
Kevin Gould (City Inspector): Code Compliance Advisement
Buffalo Niagara RIVERKEEPER: The “How’s & Whys” of Rainbarrels
West Side NHS: Budgeting with Technology
University Heights Tool Library: An Invaluable Resource for All Homeowners

When: Saturday, March 4 @ 10am to 12pm

Where: University Heights Community Laboratory [9 West Northrup Place]

** Please RSVP to Micah at 716- 877-3910 as space is limited or through the Eventbrite website here! **

This event is graciously sponsored by Citizens Bank

Strength Training in the Tyler Street Community Garden


Please join the ever-so talented Derek Nichols, Director of Education and Outreach for Grassroots Gardens, this Wednesday, September 14th @ 5:30pm for a FREE strength and condition class in the Tyler Street Community Garden located at 73 Tyler Street. This forty minute strength training class is made for any fitness level to help build and tone your muscles by using your own body weight. Shed a few of those summer lbs. and attend this class!

All classes are free and open to the public. Bring a yoga mat and plenty of water. Coolers will be provided. For questions and to RSVP, please call 716.783.9653 or email RSVPing is important for notifications on inclement weather.

DEAD TREE REMOVAL: Prep for ReTree the District

LinearPark250Please join the University Heights Tool Library, CommuniTree Stewards, and residents of University Heights as they look to remove dead trees, which unfortunately died during the drought earlier this year, that will be replaced during the fall ReTree the District planting on November 5th. Meet at The Tool Library [5 W. Northrup Place] on September 24th from 9am to 11:30am. Anyone over the age of 18 is encouraged to attend. Gloves and refreshments will be provided.

Make sure to RSVP for the event by emailing or by registering through out Facebook event so they are able to bring an accurate number of tools for everyone!


Community Laboratory Workshops for July


Checkout all the events and workshops happening at the University Heights Community Laboratory (CoLab) and University Heights neighborhood for the end of July!

CoLab-Logo-ButtonThe CoLab is a multipurpose space that provides DIY workshops focused on neighborhood development, community empowerment, and affordable and accessible education.

Fair Housing Rights presented by H.O.M.E. – Wednesday, July 20th @ 6pm to 7pm – Come learn your rights as a tenant and landloard as the Community Laboratory welcomes back Educational Specialist Katherine Sponaugle from Housing Opportunities Made Equal (H.O.M.E.) for a FREE Tenants and Landlords Rights Workshop. Stop by or register online here!

Bailey Fights Blight: Community Paint Day II – Saturday, July 23rd @ 10am to 2pm – Join professional artists, business owners, and community members as we start to paint the designs created through community brainstorming. We’ll also host a neighborhood cleanup for those less artistically inclined! Meet at the Varsity Theater located at 3165 Bailey Avenue where gloves and painting supplies will be distributed.

DIY Bike Tune-Up and Resources by Bufvelo -Friday, July 28th @ 5pm to 7pm – Bufvelo are back yet again to offer their wisdom and expertise when it comes to the biking world! Join Andy and Nat as they answer questions pertaining to your bike and its ventures, and offer their knowledge of cheap and free bicycle resources around the city, country, and interwebs! Register on Facebook here or via a google form here.

Make & Take: Children’s Craft Workshop – Saturday, July 30th @ 12pm to 1pm – For the aspiring artist in your kid, bring him or her to this workshop as they learn how to craft a water vessels made out of origami for the low cost of $7 for attendance. Sign-up at the University Heights Tool Library or via this google form. Parents must accompany their children for the workshop.

Prep The Gardens for the 15th Annual Capen Garden Walk: A Community Workday


A Neighborhood Workday

Taking a break from our normal monthly community meeting, we’ll be taking to the neighborhood to prep and clean the gardens and green spaces around University Heights in anticipation of the 15th Annual Capen Garden Walk on Saturday, July 15th from 10am to 4pm & 8pm to 10pm. There are over 9 green spaces and gardens in University Heights maintained by the community and all of them will be on display during the morning and night walks!UHCGardenWorkDay7-12-16

Meet at the University Heights Tool Library [9 W. Northrup Place] around 6pm where gloves, trowels, garbage bags and other gardening equipment will be distributed to volunteers. Feel free to bring your own, and friends and family who are looking to help continue the beautification of the neighborhood!

Bailey Fights Blight: Brainstorming Session #2

Bailey Fights Blight is a collaborative project being spearheaded by the Bailey Avenue Business Association, University Heights Collaborative, and University Heights Tool Library that seeks to board up and secure blighted and vacant storefronts along Bailey Avenue, while incorporating public art as a way to beautify the neighborhood and help redevelop the commercial corridor’s identity and sense of place.

Join us this Saturday, July 9th from 12pm to 3pm as we’ll start refining ideas from the previous brainstorming session and work to finalize designs for the Bailey Avenue murals. Provide your input for the mural by participating in hands-on craft stations to create works for out muralist to draw inspiration from. Come support and provide your creativity to help inspire the designs that will be on Bailey!

Little Libraries Silent Auction Fundraiser




Join The Tool Library and The Foundry on Thursday, June 23rd @ 6pm – 9pm for a night of food, friends, music, and a silent auction for an opportunity to bid on one of many handcrafted Little Libraries! Entry to the event is free so bring friends, family, and those looking for an extra little library for their street! If auctions aren’t your thing, don’t let that stop you from coming as there will be basket raffles and a cash bar

Help spread a love for literature and support two nonprofits working to empower Buffalo’s residents, businesses, and neighborhoods. All proceeds from the event will go toward both organizations as they look to raise funds for a VISTA volunteer to help create and program more community projects like these!

Where: The Varsity Theatre [3165 Bailey Avenue Buffalo, NY 14214]

When: Thursday, June 23rd @ 6pm to 9pm

How: Entry to the event is free! Let us know you’re coming by showing your interest on our Facebook Event page:

June Workshops at the Community Laboratory [ 9 W. Northrup Place]

The Community Laboratory (CoLab) is at it again to offer you free and low-cost DIY workshops to improve yourself and the community around you. The CoLab are a multipurpose space that offers DIY workshops and open space rentals in the University District. Check out what’s for offer below!


DIY Spoke Card Workshop and Fundraiser! – Friday, June 3rd @ 10am – 6pm – Spoke cards can be fancy or functional, blingy or blasé. These handmade cards are laminated to weave into and adorn your spokes with information about where you have been, your thoughts or artistic style, or maybe information to keep on hand (road rules anyone?!).
All crafting materials will be provided, but feel welcome to bring something of your own to laminate. We encourage friends, neighbors, and fellow bike enthusiasts to join in on the fun. Let them know you’re coming by clicking (and registering) here!
DIY Exterior Paint Workshop by Valu Home Centers – Saturday, June 4th @ 10am – 2pm – Valu Home Centers and their team of experts will be back at the CoLab again hosting a FREE workshop for those of you who need a brush-up, no pun intended, on how to properly paint the exterior of any home. They will provide a brief but detailed tutorial then lead you thru a hands-on demonstration as everyone helps to prime a tagged wall of the University Heights Tool Library, which will transformed with the inclusion of a new mural! Register here!
*NOTE: The first 25 participants to register for the workshop will receive a FREE $25 Gift Card to Valu Home Centers, great for buying a few gallons of paint!*
Little Library Decorating Day at The Foundry – Saturday, June 4th @ 10am – 1pm –Come participate as skilled artists and residents add that last special detail to the little libraries crafted in May which will then be auctioned off publicly to help raise funds for future Tool Library and Foundry community projects. Bring a friend or fellow crafty person to get your design on! The workshop will take place at 298 Northampton in the Foundry’s wood shop.
Little Library Decorating Day at The Foundry – Sunday, June 5th @ 10am – 1pm – Come participate as skilled artists and residents add that last special detail to the little libraries crafted in May which will then be auctioned off publicly to help raise funds for future Tool Library and Foundry community projects. Bring a friend or fellow crafty person to get your design on! The workshop will take place at 298 Northampton in the Foundry’s wood shop.
DIY Bike Tune-Up and Resources by Bufvelo -Friday, June 17th @ 5pm to 7pm – Bufvelo are back yet again to offer their wisdom and expertise when it comes to the biking world! Join Andy and Nat as they answer questions pertaining to your bike and its ventures, and offer their knowledge of cheap and free bicycle resources around the city, country, and interwebs! Register here!


DIY Restaking, Retying, and Pruning Tree Saplings – Saturday, June 18th @ 10am – 12pm – Interested in urban forestry but just a beginner? Then this workday is the right place to get started and into everything trees. Come learn basic tree biology and techniques for tree maintenance as amateur arborist and CoLab co-founder Joseph Kurtz takes you around the University Heights to retie, stake, and prune young saplings planted during Phase II of ReTree the District. Register on the Tool Library’s facebook page!

DIY String Art Workshop – Wednesday, June 22nd @ 7pm- 9pm – Participants will have fun hammering away their stresses as they create their own, sophisticated piece of rustic String Art.  We will be using a vinegar treatment to give our wood a rustic appearance and several design templates will be available to choose from including a buffalo, a bicycle and a skull, just to name a few.  String Art is fun and easy to make and the results look great!  You will be proud to display your new piece or even give it as a gift.
Because we will be using hammers, this activity is best suited for artists ages 12 and up.

Participants are encouraged to Pre-register to reserve their space.  The cost of the workshop is $25.

Final Tuesday at the Tyler Street Community Garden Workday – Tuesday, June 28th @ 3pm to 7pm – Join the garden manager and volunteers of the Tyler Street Community Garden for their monthly workday as they share their gardening knowledge with other volunteers and University Heights residents who

Relax, Reuse and Rejuvenate at the University Heights CoLab!

Well it’s been a pretty packed month at 9 West Northrup. From our month-long art expose from the artists at People Inc., to our first (and hopefully not our last!) Beginner’s Guide to Meditation from the talented Janet Deese of the Illumination Wellbeing Center. Check out her web page at

Beginner’s Guide to Meditation 870f3b3b-6fb0-458d-a9f5-83f3284674ea

People Inc. Pop Up Art Gallery 12803024_1508556796118310_1137916208624230881_n

So what is next for the University Heights CoLab you ask?

April 18th to April 30th at the CoLab 

Spring Cleaning Clothing Trade: 

It’s that time of year – Spring Cleaning at the CoLab! Do you have clothing you think you might never wear again? In the spirit of spring, participate in Buffalo’s Spring Cleaning Clothing Trade hosted at the University Heights CoLab! Bring a bag of clothes and trade them for other gently used clothing. Please only women’s and children’s clothing. In order to participate you MUST bring clothes to trade. Event page can be reached at:

Drop off times will take place in the University Heights Tool Library at 5 West Northrup Place. Drop off times are between April 18th to the 21st during Tool Library hours.

The Clothing Trade will take place in the University Heights CoLab at 9 West Northrup Place on Friday, Saturday and Sunday from 10 AM – 6 PM. Register at the following link:

April 21st from 6:30 pm to 8:00 pm at the CoLab 

Healthy Living Lecture: 

Go for the greens and eat like a king! FREE workshop showing you new techniques to create green smoothies, green puddings and chopped green salads. Your body will thank you for foods like this! Try samples, learn their nutritional benefits. Register here:

April 30th from 9:00 am to 2:00 pm at The Foundry (298 Northampton St, Buffalo, NY 14208)

DIY Little Libraries:

Learn how to create and build the framework for a little library then stay to add your own unique flare to it by decorating the structure with reclaimed wood and metal. Register at the following link: