Ofrenda exhibit hindsight

Historically Speaking



Hello, Atascosa County! I hope November finds us all well and healthy. I have been receiving reminders from Facebook daily about our memories and boy do we have a lot to be thankful for. This time last year, it was election time and COVID had a tight grip on this family. I will 100% tell you that I never want to be there again. I do enjoy looking back and reminiscing.

This past week, we took a trip to the past. Well, not really, but let me explain. The Certified Local Government (CLG) Committee of The Historical Commission had a project called Recuerdame, which translates to Remember Me. It was an ofrenda exhibit, but it was a little more than that. It was immersive and personal. An ofrenda is a home altar with a collection of objects placed on a ritual display during the annual and traditional Mexican Día de los Muertos celebration. An ofrenda, which may be quite large and elaborate, is usually created for an individual person who has died and is intended to welcome them to the altar setting. I explained in last week’s edition where the practice derived from The Aztecs.

The CLG Committee chaired by Marie Levy and who also includes members Linda Leal, Erlinda Huizar and Lupe Donato did an outstanding job with this project. It was very detailed, colorful and took us by surprise. It almost took us into another realm, so to speak. During the opening reception, Judge Hurley stated that he had the foresight that this event would grow as time went on and the event continued. I have to agree with him, I can officially say that the Recuerdame Event was a great success. The families that participated with the exhibits were appreciative and the attendees were pleased with the exhibits.

Some of the founding families that were honored by an altar were Navarro, Esparza and Leal. Public Servants Percy Medina, David Prasifka and Lonnie Gillespie were also honored and remembered. This Historical Commission also had our very own to remember, Norman Porter Sr., Gloria Jenks, Susan Levy and Louis Rodriguez. We are very thankful to the participating families; we could not have pulled this off without them.

This Commission has been improving and our future plans are to continue our education and recognition of Atascosa County history. Our next two projects will include participating in Lytle Junior High’s History Day and hosting Archaeologist Al McGraw’s Camino Real Presentation.

I hope you enjoyed this week’s column. Thank you for reading, until next time.

MARTIN GONZALES is the Atascosa County Commission Chairman. If you have history of Atascosa County you’d like to share, you may contact him at 830-480-2741.

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