Posted by deborahmclaren on October 30, 2010
The Day of the Dead, celebrated on the first two days of November, is a time when Mexican families remember and honor their ancestors. Families gather in cemeteries to clean and decorate gravesites, eat and drink, and tell stories about the departed — just like a family reunion. In their homes, people set up ofrendas, or altars, dedicated to the spirits of their loved ones and covered with symbolic objects and some of their ancestors’ favorite food and drink. Friendly images — like a skeleton playing guitar — make death seem more approachable.
Ofrenda created by René Lopez, a teacher at Guadalupe Alternative Programs, for display at the Minnesota Historical Society's Dead of the Dead Celebration.
Thanks to a strong Latino community and the support of local arts organizations, every year the Twin Cities sees several Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebrations. Every year, the Minnesota History Center hosts a celebration.
CENTRO's Day of the Dead
Latino community organization Centro offers a traditional tour of altars. (Noon-6 p.m. daily through Nov. 5. Free. 1915 Chicago Av. S., Mpls. 612-874-1412.)
Lake Street’s Mercado Central throws a traditional celebration with Aztec dancing, traditional foods, mask-making, music, candlelit procession to El Colegio and an exhibit of ofrendas by students and community members. (2-9 p.m. Mon. Free. Mercado Central, 1515 E. Lake St, Mpls. 612-728-5401.)
Minnesota Institute of Art, Minneapolis
And continuing through Nov. 14 is the Young People’s Ofrenda Project put on by the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, an exhibition featuring ofrendas created by students from urban charter school El Colegio. (Free. 2400 3rd Av. S., Mpls., 612-870-3131.)
Altered Esthetics invites the community to come together and celebrate the lives of those we have lost. El Día de Los Muertos is a time to remember loved ones who have passed away and a time for families and the community to come together. Altered Esthetics is having a one-day celebration, art show and candlelight procession on November 2nd 2010. The celebration and exhibit opening will take place in the evening, from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM, and is free and open to the public. The candlelight procession will take place at 8:30pm. We will begin the procession at Ae and continue around the surrounding Ae neighborhood, returning to the gallery at 9:00 PM. Artists and guests are welcome to set up their own ofrendas at Ae gallery prior to the event – we are open Saturday, October 30th 1pm-5pm and Tuesday, November 2, from 1pm-4pm. Altered Esthetics Gallery is at 1224 Quincy Street NE
A Day of the Dead Dinner will take place on Thursday, November 4, 2010 at 5:30 at the Campus Club West Wing on the University of Minnesota’s Minneapolis campus. The program is hosted by Angelica Afanador Pujol, Assistant Professor of Art History and will display Day of the Dead Folk Art. The dinner is co-sponsored by the Office of International Programs and the Campus Club. Reservations are required. Call 612-626-7788.
Posted in cultural heritage, Mexico | Tagged: Day of the Dead, Minnesota | Leave a Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 29, 2010
Looking for something chillin’ this weekend?
I’m heading to Bare Bones Theater’s all ages Halloween performance at Hidden Falls Park, along the Mississippi River in Saint Paul, MN. This year its Carnetheria, a puppet spectacle that plumbs the deep and darkest depths of a dreamlike Carnival. It’s going to be cold so we’re wearing lots of warm things and taking hot chocolate. First, we walk through the woods meeting amazing creatures and people. We find an open air theater in the middle of the woods and have a seat on hay bales. Then a spectacular puppet performance will take place in the dark woods; mysterious music provided by a live orchestra. My son, Anil, and I missed the 2009 performance so we’re looking forward to going again. Here’s
The Amazing Fire Battle!
Click here for a clip from the 2009 performance of Devoured — Spirit Puppet –Created by Soozin Hirschmugl.
As they say on their website, “Using larger-than-life puppets, shadow puppets, bike puppets, costumes, masks, song, dance, stilting, aerialism, fire artistry, and original music by a live orchestra, the BareBones Halloween Outdoor Puppet Extravaganza promises an unforgettable nighttime spectacular through the best traditions of community theater, public pageantry, and seasonal celebration.” An amazing amount of time, artistry, passion goes into the preparation, theater and music, and clean-up of the outdoor performances which are held for two weekends – the weekend before Halloween and the weekend of Halloween itself. This is a tiny peek into the magic that takes place to create these shows:
Too cold to be outdoors? Try Bomp: Bedlam Theater’s recurring dance party/caberet that will move to Nick and Eddie on Loring Park for a Halloween edition with the Moongoons (who provide ritualistic energy exchanges that concentrate the powers needed for spellcasting & party rockin. Srsly), Shannon Blowtorch, Wzz Wnshp (burlesque) and Plain Ole Bill. (10 p.m.-3 a.m. Fri. $5-$7. 18-plus.
Rainy Day Cabaret (a “cryptic” cabaret) will present “Wake the Dead” the Old Arizona Theater in Minneapolis on November 4, 5, and 6th. RDC was conceived in 2007 by Joanie Mix, as a part of the 2007 Minnesota Fringe Festival, with her production of Making Dolls. RDC is a group of emerging artists who hope to provide a new and continuing form of entertainment for any level of art enthusiast. Through the use of choreography, music, video and costume design, a dark world is generated where you are invited to come and fill your open mind.
The Legend of Sleepy Hollow will be presented by the Reader’s Theatre at Oliver H. Kelley Farm, Elk River MN (directions) on Saturday, Oct. 30, 2010 at 6:30 and 8 p.m. Fee: $10; Reservations: required, call 763-441-6896 , Step inside the rustic barn at the Kelley Farm for a performance of Washington Irving’s horror classic “The Legend of Sleepy Hollow.” Performances last approximately 1 hour. Not recommended for children under 10.
Join Anil and I on Friday at Matthews Park, 2318 28th Ave. S. Minneapolis for the annual Halloween Party and Parade (4-5:30 p.m) This Seward neighborhood parade is a beloved event for the ghouls in the community as well as spirits that float in from various parts of the Twin Cities. A party with games and treats follows in the recreation center. It’s free, no registration necessary – just dress up and show up! For more information, call 612-370-4950.
The Fitzgerald Theater, St. Paul
If you’re really daring visit any of the real haunted places in the area: The Fitzgerald Theater, Forepaugh’s Restaurant, The Caves, and the Minnesota State Capitol in St. Paul or The Seventh Street Eatery and City Hall in Minneapolis. Twin Cities Nightclubs has a list of Halloween parties for adults.
Have a Happy and Safe Halloween!
Posted in art, family travel, quite unusual | Tagged: Barebones Theater, Bedlam Theater, Bomp, Deborah McLaren, Fitzgerald Theater, Forepaughs, Halloween, haunted houses, Joanie Mix, Minneapolis, Minnesota, Minnesota State Capitol, Moon Goons, Nick and Eddie, Old Arizona Theater, Oliver H. Kelley Farm, Plain Ole Bill, Rainy Day Cabaret, Seventh Street Eater, Seward Halloween Parade, Shannon Blowtorch, spirit puppet, St. Paul, The Caves, the Legend of Sleepy Hollow, Travel Momma, Twin Cities, Twin Cities Nightclubs, Wzz Wnshp | Leave a Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 28, 2010
Just stumbled upon the Universal Packing List website. All I had to do was enter a date for travel, where, temps, where I’d be staying, etc. and it told me what to pack and reminded me to do things like make arrangements for pets… and even which country-specific vaccinations I need! Here’s an example based on my upcoming trip to India in January.
Things to do before you leave
To do for most trips
Check the expiration date of your passport
Wash the dishes
Make a lunch
Unplug electrical stuff
Turn down (or up, depending on where you live) the temperature in your home
Empty all trash cans
Confirm airline tickets
Get your airmiles in advance
Memorize PIN codes to credit cards
Check out what hospitals are covered by your health insurance
Get travel insurance
Install or recharge batteries
Forward (or hold) delivery of newspapers and magazines
To do for longer trips
Balance your bank account
Empty your wallet
Leave expensive watches and jewelery at home
Pay the rent and other necessary bills
Turn down the temperature on your water heater
Empty all water containers
Store away things that are easy to steal
Empty your fridge of perishables
Hold delivery of snail mail
Destination specific vaccinations
Yellow Fever vaccination
Japanese B Encephalitis vaccination
Trousers ( Pants, Jeans )
Cap ( Hat )
Clothes for women
Sandals ( Flip-flops )
Swimming trunks ( Bikini )
Pyjamas ( Pajamas )
Money and documents
Insurance certificate ( Health Insurance card )
Paper from your local social insurance office
Credit/ATM cards ( Visa, Eurocard/Mastercard, American Express etc )
Address list (with phone numbers and email addresses)
This packing list
Photocopies of passport and other important documents
International Student Identification Card ( ISIC )
Tourist organization certificate
International Youth Hostel Card
For carrying money and documents
Small scale map
Large scale map
Things for packing
Small extra backpack ( Knap sack, Day pack )
Plastic bags ( Ziploc )
Things for sleeping
Sheets ( Bed covers )
Multi-tool ( Folding knife )
Extra car keys
Toilet bag ( Bathroom bag, Necessaire )
Extra blades for Razor
Shaving gel ( Shaving foam )
Toothbrush ( Electric toothbrush with charger )
Hygiene (women only)
Barrettes, headbands, hair ties
Clothes pegs ( Clothes pins )
General health items
Sore tape ( Adhesive tape )
Band-Aids ( Plaster )
First aid kit
Water purifying filter
Pills, tablets and medicines
Water purifying tablets
Motion sickness tablets
Allergy pills ( Anti-histamines )
General electrical items
Cell Phone ( Mobile Phone, Cellular Phone )
Charger to Cell Phone
Wall socket adapter
Flashlight ( Torch )
Bookmark reading light
Extra batteries for your camera, flash, torch, watch, MP3-player, PDA and GPS
Digital Camera equipment
Battery charger for camera
Generic photo equipment
Music player ( Cassette, CD, MiniDisc, MP3 )
Posted in family travel, travel | Tagged: required vaccinations, travel, travel information, Universal Packing List | Leave a Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 27, 2010
Just back from Minnesota’s great Northwoods. Avoiding corporate chain hotels for locally-owned cabins. We found a rustic cabin for $55 a night on White Lake, just north of Duluth. Newly remodeled – family spent summers and weekends there for 15+ years while kids were growing up. Don’t get up there as much anymore, so renting it out for a fair price to Minnesotans who can appreciate their low-impact business and invest directly into the local economy.
Posted in family travel, Minnesota, travel | Tagged: cabin rental, Duluth, Locally-owned, Minnesota | Leave a Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 22, 2010
Join me on a unique exploratory tour to India with Global Citizens Network
Global Citizens Network (GCN) is a nonprofit cultural immersion and volunteer program based in Minneapolis. Named one of the four “Best Volunteer Vacations” by National Geographic in 2007, participants recount their cross-cultural expeditions with GCN as being among the most powerful, meaningful experiences of their lives. GCN seeks to share and promote the values of peace, justice, tolerance, cross-cultural understanding and global cooperation by providing opportunities for cross-cultural expeditions with indigenous and other rural peoples around the world.
Join me and GCN staff on an exploratory tour to three unique communities in south Indian – including Tamil Naidu, Pondicherry and Andhra Pradesh. Become part of the network committed to collaborating on sustainable development efforts around the world.
The cost of the trip is $1,850 (not including international airfare) and includes room, board, domestic transportation in India and international emergency medical insurance. Join us January 6-15, 2011. This is a small group with room for only three more people. All ages are welcome although minors must be accompanied by an adult. For more information contact us at http://www.globalcitizens.org, Phone: 612.436.8270 | Toll Free: 800.644.9292.
Posted in family travel, Indigenous tourism, sustainable tourism, travel, Volunteer | Tagged: cultural immersion, Deborah McLlaren, Global Citizens Network, India, Travel Momma, voluntourism | 2 Comments »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 20, 2010
La Evolución Silenciosa (The Silent Evolution) by sculptor Jason deCaires Taylor
Just over 30 feet underwater in the Cancun and Isla Mujeres National Marine Park, 400 statues–each based on a real person–have been anchored together as part art, part artificial reef and part tourism. The work, called The Silent Evolution, is in the Museo Subacuatico de Arte, the world’s first underwater sculpture park.
The Silent Revolution
The Silent Evolution by Jason deCaires Taylor
Jason deCaires Taylor, the British sculptor (former grafitti artist who grew up near the sea in Malaysia) who created the project says he built it to reduce the negative impact tourism has had on Mexico’s reefs, as well as show humans and nature living in harmony. The cement statues are part of an artificial reef that coral and aquatic plants will grow on. His other underwater art includes a sea garden in the West Indies and human under water sculptures in a quaint English garden. Go to his website to see how the sculptures look after coral have started to grow on the installations.
The Silent Evolution by Jason deCaires Taylor
Coral growing from sculpture created by Jason deCaires Taylor.
Posted in art, climate solutions, cultural heritage, Mexico, ocean, quite unusual, water | Tagged: artificial reef, Cancun and Isla Mujeres National Marine Park, coral reef, Deborah McLaren, Jason deCaires Taylor, La Evolución Silenciosa, Mexico, Museo Subacuatico de Arte, sculptures, The Silent Evolution, underwater sculpture park, underwater sculptures | 1 Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 16, 2010
Blog Action Day is an annual event that unites the world’s bloggers in posting about the same issue on the same day. Our aim is to raise awareness and trigger a global discussion around an important issue that impacts us all – Water.
So, in honor of water, a poem by Carl Sandburg:
Prairie Waters by Night
CHATTER of birds two by two raises a night song joining a litany of running water—sheer waters showing the russet of old stones remembering many rains.
And the long willows drowse on the shoulders of the running water, and sleep from much music; joined songs of day-end, feathery throats and stony waters, in a choir chanting new psalms.
It is too much for the long willows when low laughter of a red moon comes down; and the willows drowse and sleep on the shoulders of the running water.
Posted in water | Tagged: Blog Action Day, Carl Sandburg, Prairie Waters by Night, Water | 1 Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 14, 2010
Twin Cities Transition Town and Neighborhood Sustainability Networking Fair
Keynote speaker will be Richard Heinberg, author of The Party’s Over: Oil, War, and the Fate of Industrial Societies and Powerdown: Options and Actions for a Post-Carbon World. Richard is a Senior Fellow at the Post Carbon Institute.
Neighbors from Cocoran, Powderhorn, Phillips, Seward, Longfellow, Standish Ericsson and other neighborhoods from around the Twin Cities will meet with volunteers from local congregations, immigrant associations, garden clubs and student volunteers to plan how each neighborhood can build local resilience and find ways to thrive as we adapt to climate change, peak oil and economic disruption.
For more information please contact Sean Gosiewski, Alliance for Sustainability 612-331-1099 firstname.lastname@example.org , http://www.afors.org
– $5, November 13, Minneapolis, MN
Meet you there!
Posted in climate solutions, environmental education, Minnesota, Saint Paul, Volunteer | Tagged: and the Fate, Minneapolis, Minnesota, post-carbon world, Richard Heinberg, The Party's Over: Oil, Twin Cities, Twin Cities Sustainability Fair, War | Leave a Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 8, 2010
Please join my local flavor travel page and help direct travelers to locally-owned businesses, organizations and events!
Face Book: Local Flavor Travel
Posted in Buy-local, entreprenuers, Fair Trade, green travel, microenterprise, Minnesota, Slow Foods, sustainable tourism, sustainable travel, travel | Tagged: Deborah McLaren, Face Book, Local Flavor Travel, Travel Momma | Leave a Comment »
Posted by deborahmclaren on October 8, 2010
Ran across this in the news online this morning. A reservations website, Oyster, has been tracking hotel photos and comparing them to their own photos of the same hotels. Amazing how many hotels crop their photos – whole buildings next to them to make themselves look like they are the only ones on the beach, etc. Rooms that are dressed up in photos are, in reality, sparse and without ambiance. What you see is not always what you get.
Posted in photography, travel | Tagged: fake hotel photos, Oyster | Leave a Comment »