Los Angeles International Tamale Festival and Dia de los Muertos set for Oct. 31 to Nov. 2, 2008

If you want tamales for your Day of the Dead feast but don't want the work of making them, pick some up at this weekend's Tamale Festival, where Sandi Romero of Mama's Hot Tamales Café will be helming one of the many tamale stands. The event takes place on a section of 7th Street next to MacArthur Park that will be closed to traffic. There will be music, food stands, altars on display, arts and crafts booths, a tamale-making demon- stration and many contests, including a tamale-eating event and a tamale cook-off. Bring a nonperishable food item donation for the event-sponsored food drive. Easy access via Metro Red Line (MacArthur Park exit).

Los Angeles International Tamale Festival and Dia de los Muertos, 2122 W. 7th St. (7th Street between Park View and Alvarado streets), Los Angeles. 3 to 8 p.m. Friday; 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday; 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday. www.losangelestamalefestival.com. Free admission.

-- Amy Scattergood

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