Halloween weekend will be a non-stop celebration in Anisq’ Oyo’ Park this year as the D’a de los Muertos festivities continue through sunrise with drumming and conch sounds to promote the Mexican tradition.
A special meeting of the Board of Directors for the Isla Vista Recreation and Parks District was held on Thursday to address concerns about the noise ordinance governing holiday festivities in the park. El Congreso, a student group promoting Latino and Chicano community outreach, was present to address the waiving of fees and time variance, in addition to discussing a possible consensus on the noise issue.
The IVRPD approved a variance to the noise ordinance in order to accommodate a series of D’a de los Muertos events between the hours of noon and 11:00 p.m., the majority of Saturday, Nov. 2. The IVRPD did not waive the required deposit that El Congreso will get back pending a clean park at the festivities’ end.
“The function of the deposit is to make sure that if there is any damage or cleanup, we won’t get stuck with it,” Pegeen Soutar, a member on the IVRPD Board of Directors, said
The deposit, however, was reduced to only $100, down from the original $300. Not wanting to show particular favor toward certain groups, IVRPD board members also said they were concerned about waiving the fee for an event with substantial religious significance. Board members agreed that, in this case, the event was not a formal religious ceremony; the decision to partially waive the fee was upheld.
“It’s a very open, non-secular, cultural event in which a number of community members will participate,” Diane Conn, vice chair of the IVRPD Board of Directors, said.
The festivities will include an upbeat sunrise ceremony, education about the traditional D’a de los Muertos altars, and mariachi music, as well as an “urban” dance group to entertain community members.