Celebrate Lincoln International Festival

Images courtesy of Updowntowners, Inc.
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Summary Info Festival StoryFestival Events Not AvailableOther SourcesPractical Info

Country and Region United StatesNebraska
Type of Festival Dance, Music
Location of Festival Lincoln, Nebraska USA
Festival Contact Information

Celebrate Lincoln International Festival
Updowntowners, Inc.
206 S. 13th Street, Suite 101
Lincoln, NE 68508
Phone: +01 402-434-6902
Fax: +01 402-434-6907
Email: info@updowntowners.org

Festival Description

The annual Celebrate Lincoln International Festival, presented by Lincoln Benefit Life, is produced by Updowntowners’ volunteers. Experience the World through live music, food, crafts, artwork, dance and activities. Updowntowners, Inc. is a non-profit, volunteer-driven organization that exists to enhance the social, cultural and economic vitality of Downtown Lincoln through the production of special events.

Festival Dates May 31 - June 2, 2013
Festival Links


Festival Story:

The Updowntowners’ Celebrate Lincoln festival is a collaborative multicultural event, promoting cultural awareness and appreciation through live music, food, crafts, artwork, dance and activities from around the world.

Lincoln is changing—In the last fifteen years something surprising has happened. It began with the boat people, mostly Vietnamese and Cambodians, coming in after the Vietnam War. In the 1980s Lincoln began having a few Asian markets, a Vietnamese Catholic church, a Buddhist temple, and English Language Learners (ELL) classes. Around the same time, Mexican migrant workers, who had long done seasonal work in our area, bought houses and settled down. Refugees from the wars in Central America trickled in.

The real change occurred in the 1990s. Because Lincoln had almost no unemployment and a relatively low cost of living, Lincoln was selected by the U.S. Office of Refugee Resettlement as a preferred community for newly arrived refugees. Now we are one of the top-twenty cities in America for new arrivals from abroad. Our non-white population has grown 128 percent since 1990.

Now we are one of the top-twenty cities in America for new arrivals from abroad. Our non-white population has grown 128 percent since 1990.* We have children from fifty different nationalities who speak thirty-two different languages in our public schools.* In the 2001-02 school year, 5.2% of the student population in Lincoln Public Schools were English Language Learner students-up from 4.8 the year before.**

* Pipher, Mary “The Middle of Everywhere,” Harcourt Books, 2002
** Lincoln Public Schools statistics, “English Language Learners Student Counts for the Past School Years 1989-2002” from Teresa Justin


Other Sources:

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Practical Info:

  • Events take place in Downtown Lincoln on N Street between 12th-14th streets.


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