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  • Writer's pictureGabriel San Roman

Days of the Dead: Is Santa Ana Big Enough for Two Dia De Los Muertos Street Festivals?

Updated: Sep 7, 2020

A young Mexican man and woman leave the offices of Suavecito Pomade in Santa Ana decorated with skeletal face paint. They hop into a company van headed to a spooky house in the city for a photo shoot--not for Día de los Muertos, but Halloween. Just then, Rudy Cordova, a sales rep for the hair-product company, walks in with posters and flyers in hand for Viva La Vida, a Day of the Dead festival happening at the Santa Ana Train Station a week before downtown's Noche de Altares, OC's biggest such celebration. Cordova, who co-owned iconic Santa Ana storefronts Calacas and Café Calacas before closing the former and selling off much of the latter, sits at a conference room table ready to talk about his new venture. He has years of experience alongside El Centro Cultural de Mexico in helping turn Noche de Altares into a mega-street festival with multiple street closures. But this year is the first time he's striking out on his own after leaving the Centro partnership in March, creating confusion among the city's Día de los Muertos lovers about what's going on.

Read more on my latest OC Weekly Heard Mentality Blog post:

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