Mexican Students Build A 100 Year Deathiversary Ofrenda For Revolutionary Emiliano Zapata

For most of us, Día de los Muertos is a day spent with family, remembering our abuelos and sitting by an intimate altar with plates of flan, orange marigolds, and a few chupitos for good measure. This year, a Mexican high school has dedicated their campus to a stunning, giant ofrenda for revolutionary leader Emiliano Zapata, on the 100 year anniversary of his death.

The assembly of the ofrenda took ten hours and over one thousand students, 90 teachers, and 15 staff. Since its completion late Monday, the school has opened its doors to the public and given over one hundred visitors student-led tours of the altar. 

In keeping with tradition, the ofrenda is divided into seven levels.

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

Those levels represent the gap between the underworld and our world and help the souls travel back to earth. The bright orange, sweet-scented marigolds are meant to be a sensory guide to the deceased. The Emiliano Zapata Preparatory School will celebrate its 50th year anniversary next year. On the 100 year anniversary of their namesake’s death, the school ensured Zapata would be honored.

“May our traditions never die,” the school posted to Facebook in Spanish. “A thank you to all the students, administration, tutors and teachers at the Language Academy for this splendid work.” With one post, their ofrenda went viral, with thousands of shares and likes. 

The ofrenda is 40 feet long, and uses over 200 candles.

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

Dozens of sugar skulls, fruit, tortillas, and traditional Mexican dishes are placed on the altar. “The classic figure of the leader on the right side and we placed a more contemporary version with the representation of the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN) on the left side,” Ricardo Valderrama Valdez, the school’s director, told El PaísTo help with the portraits of Zapata and the Zapatista soldier, poblano plastic artist Alejandro Teutli donated large sketches to the ofrenda. 

Then, the students colored them in with dyed sawdust.

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

Considering that this is sawdust, we have to acknowledge the excellent shading methods used on Zapata’s cheekbones. Parents are flooding the Facebook comments with Spanish praise from moms, “Congratulations!!! to both shifts how beautiful they got, very good work chic@s, my princess is lucky to be part of that institution. ????” The dads are coming through with comments like, “Excellent!!!!! Never forget our ancestors. Remembering is living……”

It took the school well over ten hours to create the ofrenda.

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

We started Monday at seven in the morning with the students of both shifts and it ended at five in the afternoon. The students were very excited to participate, each in their own way,” Valderrama Valdez told El País. Taking a day off school to commemorate an indigenous hero? Yes, please.

Zapata was a major figure in the Mexican Revolution, specifically leading the cause of campesinos, or farmers.

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

He led the revolt in Morelos, and garnered enough supporters to form the Liberation Army of the South. Their joint mission was to protect “Land and Liberty.” Zapata was the Robin Hood of land. He and his army took land from the wealthy and redistributed it to the poor. He was assassinated on April 10, 1919 by the Mexican government. 

Zapatismo remains an ongoing movement in Mexico to advocate for indigenous rights to land. 

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

In 1994, a guerrilla group in Chiapas started calling themselves the Zapatista Army of National Liberation (EZLN), in honor of the ideology that Zapata passed down. The group refuses to align itself with any political classification, though many observe the Robin Hood nature of their mission as libertarian socialist. 

Today, the EZLN is focused on civil resistance. Like the Zapatistas of the early 1900’s, the group is indigenous-led, seeking indigenous control of natural resources. Instead of engaging in militant activity with the Mexican government, it’s peaceful protest strategy is attracting more international and local support. Their flag is black with a red star in the center.

Today is the last day the ofrenda will be open to the public.

Credit: Preparatoria Emiliano Zapata / Facebook

“Offerings are something that must happen from generation to generation, it is something we want to convey to our students beyond academics,” Valderrama Valdez told El PaísIf you live nearby, you’re welcome to receive a tour from the students anytime from 9am to 6pm today. Felicidades, students! This is one for the books.

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President Trump Declares Día de Muertos a ‘National Remembrance Day’ For Americans ‘Killed By Illegal Aliens’

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President Trump Declares Día de Muertos a ‘National Remembrance Day’ For Americans ‘Killed By Illegal Aliens’

Photo: PEDRO PARDO/AFP via Getty Images

On October 30th, President Donald Trump released a memo declaring November 1st a “National Day of Remembrance for Americans Killed By Illegal Aliens”.

Almost immediately, Latinos recognized that Trump’s “day of remembrance” directly coincided with another significant day of remembrance–Dia de Muertos.

The proclamation stated that the purpose of the rememberance day was to honor the lives of Americans who were “so egregiously taken from us by criminal illegal aliens.” It continued: “As sons and daughters, mothers and fathers, brothers and sisters, and as American citizens, these precious lives are an irreplaceable piece of our national community.”

Trump concluded the statement by saying that we “recommit to ensuring that those responsible for these tragedies face justice, while taking every action to prevent these horrific acts from occurring in our Nation.”

Naturally, many Americans saw this as a direct slap in the face to Latinos who celebrate Dia de Muertos on the same day.

It is no secret that Trump has openly derided Mexican immigrants on multiple occasions, calling them “drug dealers”, “criminals”, “rapists”, and “bad hombres”.

Throughout his term, he has sought to limit all forms of immigration from the Southern border–even asylum seekers. His reasoning is that immigrants from Mexico are violent and dangerous, but statistics paint a different story. Studies have shown that crime rates are actually lower among immigrants than they are among native-born Americans.

This type of cultural insensitivity reminds is reminiscent of Trump’s Oklahoma campaign rally over the summer. As a refresher, Trump held the rally in Tulsa on June 11th–also known as Juneteenth, a holiday celebrating the emancipation of Black Americans from slavery. The fact that the rally was held in Tulsa also added insult to injury. Tulsa is the infamous site of the Tulsa Race Massacre, where jealous white Americans slaughtered residents of Oklahoma’s “Black Wall Street” en masse. Either Trump didn’t do his homework, or he was blatantly inflaming historical racial wounds. Either way, the decision was thoughtless.

Of course, many people on Twitter were shocked and appalled by Trump’s ‘National Remembrance Day’ proclamation.

This proclamation reeks of blatant race-baiting and overall disrespect for this deeply sentimental Latin American tradition.

This Latina doesn’t seem to be convinced that the date Trump chose for this “Remembrance Day” was coincidental.

The anti-Latino sentiment coming from Trump is undeniable this time.

This Twitter user couldn’t help but point out the hypocrisy of calling certain immigrants “illegal” when the OG illegal immigrants were white colonizers.

Where is the remembrance day for the millions of Indigenous people killed by European colonizers? Or the millions of Africans who were stolen from their ancestral homes and forced into slavery?

This Twitter user pointed out the statistical disparity between Americans killed by “illegal aliens” and those killed by COVID-19.

We wish Donald Trump would’ve used this same energy when it came to containing and controlling the spread of the coronavirus across the United States at the beginning of this year.

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This Cannabis Dispensary in Santa Ana Had a Dia De Los Muertos Event and Here’s Everything You Missed

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This Cannabis Dispensary in Santa Ana Had a Dia De Los Muertos Event and Here’s Everything You Missed

Dispensaries, especially unlicensed shops, are not known to be the friendliest of places. For first timers, it can be quite intimidating to go into one and be presented with a plethora of products, where do you even begin? As you stand there trying to figure out what everything means, the pressure grows as fast as the line behind you and the budtender gives you simple responses that don’t even answer your inquiries. You probably ended up leaving with more questions than you went in with and picked the best sounding products, but don’t really know what you got or what to do with it.

Tropicanna is here to change that narrative.

The dispensary, which is located in Santa Ana, serves and delivers to the greater Orange County area, including Anaheim, Irvine, and all the way to San Clemente. You can spot the shop from blocks away, the bright turquoise and pink building is easily discernible among the surrounding storefronts. The inspiration for the decor and color scheme is tied back to the original Tropicana Club in Havana Cuba, mixed with Miami vibes and culture for a modern and Instagrammable experience.

“At Tropicanna, we want people to have fun and feel at home,” co-owner JP told mitú. “When people walk into the shop, we want them to forget about all the other bad experiences they’ve had. We’re here to help, whether it be with medicinal or recreational cannabis, we want everyone to feel comfortable enough to ask all the questions they have and leave our store confident with their choices.” 

Having been to various dispensaries, I can confidently attest to the fact that their customer service team is unparalleled. Seriously. At no point in time did I feel rushed, and when I talked to the reps it was like I was talking with a friend. The shop is well stocked in all types of products, and the customer service reps were able to help me figure out which ones were right for me based on the experience I wanted to have. I even ended up leaving with a couple of products for my mom (she needs her chocolatitos to help her go to sleep).

Not only is Tropicanna changing the customer experience game, they are also inviting the community to get involved and participate in the various events they host, the most recent of which was for Dia De Los Muertos.

“We would be nothing without our community,” continued JP, “so we wanted to let them know that we appreciate them and are proud to be a part of it. That was where the inspiration for the event came in. At the end of the day, at Tropicanna we want to stand out in the experience we provide but also community presence.”

The main event setup was in the parking lot, but there was plenty to see inside the shop. As soon as you walked in you were able to sign up for a giveaway, which was complete with products from the vendors stationed outside. Cempasuchil flowers and calaveras were everywhere, most of the staff was in full calavera makeup, and there was even an altar!

If you purchased any products from the companies that were sponsoring the event, you got some free treats from the vendors outside. 👀

Food was provided by @chef_flip_fantabulas

Chef Rudy, the founder of @cannabiscateredevents, has figured out how to take delicious food and elevate it. He’s at Tropicanna every Tuesday with a weekly rotating menu. This time he made carne asada esquites that were so good, just thinking about them is making me hungry. The meal was not infused, but Chef Rudy encourages customers to season and infuse their food at home with products you can purchase inside Tropicanna! Check out his IG for more info.

Nomad Cocktail Co.

I needed something to wash down my esquites, so I went over to @nomadcocktailco and got a mocktail. Maddi, the business owner and former bartender, works with products from @kan_ade_ and Cannabis Quenchers to create specialty drinks that are as delicious and potent as they are pretty. My favorites were the piña drink with the chamoy rim and the blueberry pomegranate, complete with a cempasuchil flower 😋 Check out @nomadcocktailco and @kan_ade_ for more!

La Familia

By far one of my favorite brands, La Familia is Los Angeles based and Latino owned and operated, which is rare in the cannabis industry. I first discovered them when they launched their infused chocolates, which come in flavors like Mazapan, Fresas con Crema, and Cajeta, just to name a few. This time Tania Noyola, the brand ambassador, introduced me to some of their newer products such as their Chocolate Abuelita cookies and their Churro Rice Krispie (both super yum), and their aguas frescas, which come in flavors such as Horchata, Mango, Fresa, and even Limón con Pepino! Rumor has it they even have some chile covered gummies dropping in the next few months. @lafamiliachocolate is definitely a brand you’re going to want to keep tabs on.


Wonderbrett is another Los Angeles local vendor and they brought with them artist @eternallovetribe, well known for collaborating with BJ The Chicago Kid and bringing his design to life. The design is now the packaging for one of Wonderbrett’s most popular strains, “Black Orchid,” which is “perfect for relieving stress, anxiety, insomnia, and pain.” It was really cool to watch @eternallovetribe’s art process as they created a custom piece for the event. Check out Wonderbrett’s website here.

Humboldt’s Finest Farms

What makes Humboldt’s Finest Farms different from all the other brands? For starters, they are a co-op of 3 farmers who are all about sustainability and giving back to the community. From the way they grow their plants to the biodegradable packaging, everything that Humboldt Farms does is with intention. Their goal is to produce the highest quality products in the most natural way. Click this link to check out their website.

Dreamt Products

Another minority owned business! Created by Latina scientist, Carolina Vazquez Mitchell, Dreamt Products began when the founder started suffering from insomnia. Dr. Vazquez Mitchell had been working with cannabis since she was 17 years old, and decided to take her experience and combine it with her education to find a natural solution to her problem. Today, Dreamt Products has tinctures and vapes designed to help you get the sleep you need. Click here to find out more!

If you still had room for dessert, Afters Ice Cream was there to satisfy your craving.

Naturally, I went with their mango sorbet and added tajin and chamoy. Not available infused, but still delicious 😉

If you missed the event, don’t fret! Tropicanna told mitú they’re planning on having at least one event every month. As far as what else we have to look forward to in November, they’re having major markdowns for Black Friday and will be having even more for delivery on Cyber Monday. Check out Tropicanna’s website for more info!

Tropicanna can be found at 1628 S. Grand Ave, Santa Ana CA 92705

Questions? Call (714)701-8186 for more information.

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