Old Town Mankato prepares for Day of the Dead festival
MANKATO, Minn. (KEYC) - Last Halloween, Mankato hosted its first Day of the Dead Festival, and the event was an overwhelming success.
With just over two weeks until this year’s event, organizers say that they’ve learned a lot from last year’s trial, and this year’s celebration will be better than ever.
“Last year we’ve just seen like so many people flood in with their support to bring not only dollars but also manpower,” organizer Justin Ek said. “We have new people joining our committee and stuff like that, so we’ve added a lot of new voices and organizations that have helped kind of take it to the next level.”
Like last year, the event closes down Riverfront Drive from the Wine Cafe to Mom & Pops, and businesses are encouraged to spill out onto the street to spread the fall tradition.
Business owners say that the celebration provides an opportunity to partner not just with community members, but with their neighbors as well.
“To just lift up this day and celebrate together, it feels really good to have something, a shared mission to work together with businesses who we maybe otherwise wouldn’t, you know, have a reason to partner with, it’s really fun to have that opportunity,” Bumbelou owner Jenna Odegard said.
Organizers say that they’re excited to showcase such an important part of Latino culture to the Mankato community, and hope to provide an experience that can’t be found anywhere else.
“To be able to see the amount of positive support we have and how many people are excited to explore our culture and also to be able to celebrate their own culture,” Ek said. “So bringing this is really important and special to me because it’s not something that I got to experience.”
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