Last week, our dear friend Devin Farrell was in a devastating accident, injuring his spinal cord (with a fractured C5 vertebrae, and a spinal contusion at C6). He is in stable condition now but remains in the ICU with a lot of unknowns and what will be a long recovery ahead. Devin is an immensely important part of our community and we are going to throw events all summer to help raise money for his medical bills and GoFundMe campaign.
We met Devin in 2010, even before we opened Umami Mart, when Kayoko worked at Ippuku in Berkeley with his wife Mariko. Back then, he worked at a printing company, but his passion was woodworking and making things, and we debuted Devin's sleek HASHI Set on our online shop in 2011. An extremely artistic individual with a crazy green thumb, Devin has a love for karaoke, fly fishing, and beer. He is a super dad to twin boys, Bunta the dog, and his abundant garden hosts one of Yoko's bee hives.
In 2012, his best friend Joe Perez-Green and he built some of our key furniture pieces for our downtown Oakland shop opening, and together started a design and fabrication firm Manual Labor in Oakland in 2013. Since then, Devin and Joe have been major collaborators in the evolution of our shop, fabricating all the furniture and fixtures – from the Conbini, Bottle System, and now, our Bar. Quite frankly, Umami Mart would not look, feel, and work as seamlessly as it does if not for Devin and Joe.
And as busy as they are, designing interiors for shops and restaurants all over California (and beyond), they have helped us so much through the years to do mundane oddjobs around the shop – like installing new floors, fixing our lightbox, and making sure our fixtures are earthquake proof. They are just like that – willing to help at any turn, no matter what. Devin has given so much to us and to our little shop so it's our turn to give back.
We will be kicking off a series of fundraising efforts with a karaoke party at our shop in honor of Devin on Thursday June 9. Everyone is welcome, whether you know Devin, or want to get to know him (you should, he is hands down the nicest guy you will ever meet).
Here are some highlights for the party:
- Devin's Chuhai! Devin is a shochu lover and a Shochu Gumi member and we've created this refreshing cocktail just for him. It will be on the menu all summer at our bar, with proceeds going to Devin's family
- Bites by Bartavelle Cafe in Berkeley!
- Additional drinks by Broc Cellars and Hoptonic!
- Karaoke! We'll belt out all of Devin's greatest karaoke hits (B-52's! Weezer!)
- Prizes by Umami Mart + all our favorite peeps around the Bay Area! Plus jars of honey from Devin and Mariko's hive!
- YES! We're following county guidelines at this event!
WHAT: Let's Help Devin! Karaoke Kickoff Fundraiser
WHEN: Thursday June 9, 2022, 4-7pm
WHERE: Umami Mart
Oakland CA 94611
Can't make it to the event? Please help support Devin and his family by donating to their GoFundMe campaign!