Published : Monday, October 22, 2018 | 4:42 AM
A Pasadena organization is putting a twist on Halloween by combining education and fun with children creating their own holiday costumes that make them feel connected to the past.
The Alkebulan Cultural Center’s Halloween night event “Ancestors Haunted House” will be filled with children who came up with their costumes that reflect their African American heritage.
The Center was established in the early 1980’s to sponsor culturally informed educational activities which nurture African and African American heritage. It is located at 1435 N. Raymond Avenue in a historical landmark Pasadena firehouse.
Without revealing her son’s chosen ancestor costume, Rachel Wright, a volunteer at the center, said she loves the idea of her son talking to family members, searching the Internet and reading books to feel more connected to his heritage.
“The ancestor he chose is not from distant past generation, but is someone my son is easily able to connect with,” Wright said. “They are all picking people that are pretty well known and influential.”
Wright said transforming the Alkebulan Cultural Center into a haunted house is just one example of the many ideas the local group has come up with to draw in more community members.
“The Cultural Center has been there for a long time,” Wright said. “The directors are really trying to revitalize the program.”
Until this summer, the Alkebulan Cultural Center volunteer said she was unaware of the organization, but found out about it when she was trying to get her son involved in a summer arts program.
“I really believe in what they are doing and I want to help spread the word,” she said.
And you don’t have to be African American to be a part of the group, she added.
“It’s an event for all ages, all ethnicities and all cultures,” Wright said. “It’s great to learn about what another culture is about.”
For more information on the Ancestors Haunted House or Alkebulan Cultural Center, click here.