Over the last 100 years or so, Uptown Whittier has developed an atmosphere of refined California funk, and the occasion of art gallery/community center Casita del Pueblo's annual Día de los Muertos Art and Music Festival
should further enhance the district's slightly offbeat tone. The holiday, of course, is much more than gleeful shenanigans: it represents a rich psychological confection, one where the veneration and celebration of lost loved ones brings into sharp focus the temporal quality of life, the importance of accepting death and transcending mourning, the need to reach beyond grief and into a spiritual realm where the past and future seem, somehow, to intertwine. It's one hell of a context for a party. And with the formidable charms of hostesses Lisa Love and Ruby Champagne, costumed revelers, a classic-car show, a wide variety of family and community memorial altars, art, vendors, a tamale cookoff, a kiddie "art zone" and plenty of wild, live music from female-fronted R&B soulsters The Drizz, cumbia-reggae groovemongers Betty's Mustache and high-impact Afrobeat radicals Mexico 68, this lively Day of the Dead throwdown will reach deep inside your soul. Casita del Pueblo, 13100 Philadelphia St., Whittier; Sun., Oct. 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; free. (562) 693-2844, casitadelpueblo.org.
Sun., Oct. 13, 10 a.m.-5 p.m., 2013