UHD's Mariachi Los Caimanes Keeps Rolling During Dia de los Muertos Parade Nov. 6
By Mike Emery
Two years ago, one of the city's first college mariachi bands took the community by storm.
And the band has certainly weathered some storms, including a pandemic, a historic freeze, tropical disturbances and even a hurricane. Still, the music of the University of Houston-Downtown's Mariachi Los Caimanes plays on.
This weekend, the band will greet audiences as part of Houston's inaugural Dia de los Muertos Festival & Parade. The group will be on a float sponsored by Grupo Teatro Indigo (with whom they collaborated on a performance at Miller Outdoor Theatre).
The parade will begin at 7 p.m. at the corner of Bagby Street and Allen Parkway. The procession will extend around City Hall and through areas of downtown. ABC13 will live stream the event, and anchor Mayra Moreno will host this first city parade dedicated to Dia de los Muertos. A daylong festival in Sam Houston Park (1000 Bagby St.) will precede the parade and start at 2 p.m.
Houstonians are familiar with UHD's Mariachi Los Caimanes through its appearances on television and at public events such as the recent Calavera con Calavera performance (with Grupo Teatro Indigo) at Miller Outdoor Theatre.
Last year, the group also performed at H-Town Votes Live, and one of its founding members Jimmy Arredondo was a national finalist in the 2020 Mariachi Vargas Extravaganza Vocal Competition.
Coincidentally, the group's public debut was during a lunchtime concert on campus during Dia de los Muertos.
Students from all majors comprise Mariachi Los Caimanes, and they are led by veteran Houston musician and UHD Assistant Director of Student Activities Jose Vazquez.
The University of Houston-Downtown (UHD) is the second-largest university in Houston and has served the educational needs of the nation’s fourth-largest city since 1974. As one of four distinct public universities in the University of Houston System, UHD is a comprehensive, four-year university led by President Loren J. Blanchard. Annually, UHD educates approximately 14,000 students, boasts more than 66,000 alumni, and offers 45 bachelor’s degrees, 12 master’s degrees, and 19 online programs within four colleges: Marilyn Davies College of Business, College of Humanities and Social Sciences, College of Public Service, and College of Sciences and Technology. UHD has one of the lowest tuition rates in Texas.
U.S. News and World Report ranked UHD among the nation’s Best Online Bachelor’s Programs for Applied Administration and Best Online Master’s Programs in Criminal Justice, as well as a Top Performer in Social Mobility. The Wall Street Journal/College Pulse ranked UHD one of the best colleges in the U.S. for its 2024 rankings, with notable distinctions: No. 1 for diversity (tied) and No. 3 for student experience. The University is designated as a Hispanic-Serving Institution, a Minority-Serving Institution, and a Military Friendly School. For more information on the University of Houston-Downtown, visit uhd.edu.