By Maria Roman
Photos by Chris Randall
On October 31, Unidad Latina en Accion’s (ULA’s) Day of the Dead Parade was held in Fair Haven, a predominately Latino-populated area of New Haven, where hundreds of participants observed homemade giant puppets being carried by marchers. The tradition, which originated in Mexico, is celebrated throughout Latin America on November 1 as a day of remembrance with special food preparation for the dead.
The parade is in its sixth year and ULA Organizer, John Lugo, said preparations have always been worked out with the Bregamos Community Theater on Blatchley Avenue in Fair Haven, where the after party is held. Partygoers of many ethnicities danced and ate, while listening to the sounds of live bands. There was a large altar with food and a photo showcase in remembrance of those killed as martyrs. A banner above the altar read in Spanish, “They wanted to bury us, but they didn’t know we are seeds.”
ULA is a leading member of the Connecticut Rights Alliance, a statewide coalition including immigrant, faith, labor, civil rights and human service organizations. Lugo explained that ULA chose Bregamos because “the venue is very underground, grassroots, it’s a community venue. It has a name that is very close to our philosophy.”