Oceanside, CA -Join the Oceanside Public Library for “Creando Memorias en Oceanside,” a series of six free, family-friendly workshops and events celebrating the richness of Oaxacan culture. This cultural series will include a cooking class, an art workshop, a dance class, a screening of a documentary film, an Oaxacan craft-making workshop and a final Noche de Calenda – a night of music and dancing and celebration to close out the series. These events, in partnership with Oceanside’s Oaxacan community, will be held throughout the months of November and December at Crown Heights Community Resource Center, located at 1210 Division Street, and Civic Center Library, at 330 North Coast Highway in downtown Oceanside. All events are free to attend and welcome to everyone, no registration is necessary and all materials will be provided.
- Memela Cooking Class – November 2 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Crown Heights Community Resource Center. Carmen Colon, owner of the Oaxacan restaurant Cocina Del Carmen in Vista, will kick off the series by leading a memela cooking class and sharing her story, of growing up in Oaxaca and eventually coming to the U.S. to open her own successful business.
- Origin Story Art Workshop – November 9 from 5:00 to 7:00 p.m. at the Crown Heights Community Resource Center. Oceanside artist and muralist Sandra Carmona will guide attendees through a conversation about their backgrounds as a way to inspire their artwork, which will be put on display at the library.
- Flor de Piña and Chilena Dance Class – November 14 from 6:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Civic Center Library. The flor de piña and chilena dances are two of the many traditional dances that are unique to Oaxaca and its eight regions. Presented yearly at Oaxaca’s famous Guelaguetza, flor de piña and chilenas is also danced at Oaxacan parties.
- Film Screening – November 16 at 6:00 p.m. at the Civic Center Library. The documentary film Oaxacalifornia: The Return (Ziff, 2021), which chronicles three generations of the Mejía family and deals with the nuances of both belonging and otherness that many individuals experience while growing up, will be shown. Opening comments will be made by UC Riverside professor Dr. Xochitl Chavez, whose current work focuses on second-generation Zapotec brass bands in Los Angeles and transborder relationships with their communities of origin in Oaxaca, Mexico.
- Marmota-making workshop – Tuesday, December 5 at 6:00 p.m. in the Civic Center Library Community room. Typically seen at Oaxacan calendas as they are twirled during a procession or fiesta, marmotas are large white spheres attached to a wooden pole that are decorated with bright colors and a banner announcing the name of the town where festivities are being held. Marmotas made at this workshop will be saved for the Noche de Calenda event, where attendees will be encouraged to display their creations.
- Noche de Calenda December 14 at 5:30 p.m. in the Civic Center Library courtyard. For the culminating series event, Noche de Calenda, a local group of chinas oaxaqueñas will showcase their traditional attire as they dance to the sounds and melodies of an Oaxacan band. Groups performing la danza de los diablitos Mixtecos and la danza de los rubios will also be present representing the Mixtec region of Oaxaca. Free food and beverages will be served by Cocina Del Carmen.
This project was made possible with support from California Humanities non-profit partner of the National Endowment for the Humanities. Funding the Library Innovation Lab has also been provided by California Humanities and the State of California through the California State Library. Visit www.calhum.org. These free events are also supported by the Friends of Oceanside Public Library. The Oceanside Public Library aims to empower the community by promoting literacy, information access, civic engagement, cultural inclusiveness, and openness to new ideas. Visit us at www.oceansidepubliclibrary.com or call 760-435-5600 for more info about Library programs and services.