Spectrum News Brief
For the second year, local activist Rick Cervantes will build his Hillcrest Community Ofrenda at the base of the Hillcrest Pride Flag. According to Wikipedia, “An ofrenda is the offering placed in a home altar during the annual and traditionally Mexican Día de los Muertos celebration. An ofrenda, which may be quite large and elaborate, is usually created by the family members of a person who has died and is intended to welcome the deceased to the altar setting.”
The Hillcrest altar will be built starting at 4 pm on Halloween, Tuesday, Oct. 31, and be in place through the evening of Thursday, Nov. 2. All community members are invited to add photos or mementos of loved ones who have passed to the altar at any time while it is up.
Cervantes had been building a small ofrenda in his home each year since his brother was murdered in 2016. Last year, Cervantes and Benny Cartwright had the idea to build a larger scale outdoor community ofrenda, and with the blessing of the Hillcrest Business Association, constructed the first one at the base of the Pride flag in mid-October. Overnight, it was destroyed.
The pair decided to build it back (and bigger) later that month, along with a 24-hour team of volunteers who looked after it day and night for the three days it was up. Dozens of community members stopped by to visit the altar and place their own mementos in honor of loved ones.
During the building of the altar this Halloween, a brief ceremony will be held at 6 pm for community members to gather and learn more about the tradition of Día de los Muertos. Community members are welcome to stop by the altar 24-hours a day through Nov. 2.
Volunteers are needed to keep watch over the ofrenda from Oct. 31-Nov. 2. Visit bit.ly/2023Ofrenda for more information and to sign-up.
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