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Dia de Los Muertos displays celebrate life and death

Altars at Ritz Theatre honor those who have passed
Dia de Los Muertos displays at Ritz Theatre
Posted at 6:04 AM, Oct 29, 2021
and last updated 2021-10-29 07:11:25-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Sugar skulls, the signature marigold flowers and photos of lost loved ones are among the items you will see inside the Ritz Theater in downtown Corpus Christi.

“What it means to me is that we take a time to pause and think of those who are longer with us," artist Leslie Ruel said.

Dia de Los Muertos is a unique Mexican tradition celebrating life and death.

A big part of this day is an ofrenda, an altar with a collection of objects placed on a ritual display to honor and remember loved ones who have passed away.

“Behind me, we have the giant community altar and we invite the community to bring photos of loved ones to place on the altar and we also have a tribute wall,” said K Space executive director Michelle Smythe.

It's a part of the Dia de los Muertos Walk of Remembrance around 10 downtown businesses that have installed altars at their store front.

Ruel is making an altar in honor of her friend, Valdino, who passed away in 2019.

“The process of putting it together was actually quite healing for me,” Ruel said, who says she expresses herself through art and also contributes to the Locust review, an arts and culture publication.

Everything on her altar display from the table cloth, to the art and board games is how Ruel says she remembers her dear friend.

“He loved to play poker, he loved to play cards, he was a magician," Ruel said. "He loved Texas Hold 'Em. I used to go to the games with him."

You can visit the Walk of Remembrance ofrenda display at the Ritz Theatre, which will be open through the first Friday Art Walk on Nov. 5.

When the doors are open you can leave a photo of your lost loved one at the community altar.

Times it will be open include:

  • Thursday, Oct. 28, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Oct. 29, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Saturday, Oct. 30, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Sunday, Oct. 31, 3 p.m. to 9 p.m.
  • Monday, Nov. 1, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Tuesday, Nov. 2, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m.
  • Friday, Nov. 5, 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. (during ArtWalk)