Inspired by different lantern festivals around the Atlanta area, Lyndon House Arts Center and the Athens Institute for Contemporary Art (ATHICA) are collaborating with the Latin American Caribbean Studies institute for the city’s first lantern parade.
On Nov. 1, people can join the Lantern Parade with flashlights, paper bags or custom made cloth lanterns. The only requirement is all lanterns must be powered by a flameless source, according to the event’s Facebook page.
“The definition of what makes a lantern is very fluid. Basically bring something that lights up,” said Lauren Fancher, ATHICA board president.
In preparation for the parade, Lyndon House Arts Center hosted a lantern making workshop on Oct. 13 at Creature Comforts Brewery for participants who wanted help with their designs.
“The idea is to feel the beauty of the lights,” Francher said.
The collaboration with the Latin American Caribbean Studies institute will bring a showcase of the Tonalli Danza Folklórica Mexicana dance troupe who will be leading the parade.
Bringing a vibrant appreciation for Mexican culture, the Tonalli Danza Folklórica Mexicana dance troupe will perform a mix of traditional folk dances from different states in Mexico, including the Bruja dance. This classic dance includes one or several women holding a candle while dancing and then moving it to the crown of their heads.
While the parade is not being classified as a Day of the Dead event, it falls on the Mexican holiday and gives the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute a space to educate and celebrate.
“This is a neat opportunity to highlight an important tradition in Latin America while being fun and educating for the kids and parents,” said Paul Duncan, the coordinator for the Latin American and Caribbean Studies Institute.
This inaugural celebration, finally coming after last year’s postponement due to rain, begins at 7 p.m. at the Lyndon House Art Center and ends at the Leathers Building on Pulaski Street.