Edna White Community Garden  Celebrates Life with Day of the Dead Altar 

 

Over the years, the Edna White Community Garden, 1850 W. Monterey Ave., has hosted everything from a peace rally to honey harvesting to winter bird feeding to holiday decorating.   

The award-winning Edna White Garden announces a Celebration of Life for local residents through a Day of the Dead traditional three-day remembrance, Oct. 31 through Nov. 2. 

During Day of the Dead – Día de Muertos – families gather together to remember and honor their deceased loved ones. A sacred, joyous time, a Day of the Dead tradition includes food and flowers, visits with family members, prayers, and stories about those who have died.  

“Memories of our loved ones still guide us in our everyday lives,” said Kathy Figel Edna White Garden executive director.  “The angels in our lives looking after us are those we’ve loved and lost. We need them now more than ever.” 

According to Figel, the garden’s core volunteers will once again “convert the yellow shed at the garden into an altar or Ofrenda” for residents to hang images of family members they want to honor. 

A Latin American tradition handed down through generations is just beginning to take hold in the U.S. and break through the white noise of Halloween, Thanksgiving and Christmas. 

“If ever there were a time to shun the commercialism of our own holidays and find solace in the strength of our ancestors, now is that time,” said Figel.  “We can find inspiration to help us through this uncertain moment and get to the other side stronger.”     

Day of the Dead is a very sacred day. It’s a day in which family members welcome back the memory and the souls of those people who are still an important part of their family, even though they may not be physically present.  

According to those who follow Mexican Art, Day of the Dead is “a sacred day in which a lot of people pray” and gather together to welcome back loved ones. 

Depending on the weather, Tues., Nov. 2, 5 to 7 p.m., is designated as a time for music, meditation and individual prayer at the garden.  

According to Figel, the transition into the winter season is a perfect time for reflection.  

People who want to participate are asked to send a photograph of a deceased loved one via email to kathyfigel@icloud.com. Garden volunteers will prepare the photo, laminate it and post it on the altar, which will remain in place through November. A $10 donation covers the cost of placement and goes toward upkeep of the garden. Donations can be sent via Venmo or dropped at Figel’s home; email for address. Watch for additional Edna White Garden events during November through the Facebook page @EdnaWhiteCommunityGardens.   

 

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