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Olvera Street Merchants Launch Kick Start Campaign

For decades, Angelenos have come to expect that at the end of October and the first of November they can head over to the historical Olvera Street marketplace and take part in evening processions, altar building and children’s workshops in observance of Día de lo Muertos/Day of the Dead, a Latino cultural event held yearly to pay tribute to loved ones who may have died, but whose spirits live on.

Olvera Street merchants have traditionally organized these and other popular cultural events such as Las Posadas with funds from the city of Los Angeles. This year however, the merchants are seeking alternate funding sources, and last month launched an online campaign to solicit $9,999 in donations on Kickstarter, but only have until Sept. 26 to meet their goal.

According to El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument General Manager Christopher Espinosa, funding has not been cut for Olvera Street’s Day of the Dead or other traditional festivities. He told EGP that a decision by the city attorney requires activities funded by the city to go through a competitive bid process.

The merchants decided to bypass seeking funding from the city, in favor of raising the funds on their own to continue managing the traditional activities as they have done for years. Their fear was the events would become too commercialized through the bidding process, and hope by raising the funds on their own they can continue to provide the time-honored and authentic programming they have for years offered at the city’s birthplace.

Donations through the kickstarter campaign are tax-deductible. Funds will only be collected and made available if the donation goal is met.

Read more at http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/2111068651/olvera-street-los-angeles-dia-de-los-muertos-proce