Día de los Muertos is a Mexican celebration to remember and honor the lives of loved ones we have lost. The spirit of the dead are allowed to visit their families from October 31 to November 2. Mexican families often make altars and place ofrendas (offering) to celebrate and give thanks to people they miss. According to the National Hispanic Cultural Center, “at the core Día de los Muertos traditions and rituals retain the primary mission of honoring, remembering and celebrating the life of all those who have come before us; as well as giving hope to our own inevitable mortality.” Dia del Los Muertos decorations are often beautiful and elaborate and may include papel picado, music, flowers, calaveras (sugar skulls), mariachis, and yummy food and drink.

Parents of OA Share Memories of Día de los Muertos…

Hillary Benson, mother of OA student Sophie, writes: “My experience of Día de los Muertos is from San Francisco, CA where there is a longstanding parade after dark through the Mission neighborhood. It’s the first parade I ever experienced where there are organized groups participating but anyone from the sidelines can also join in. Many participants and onlookers have their faces painted as skulls and are wearing costumes, and many people carry candles and photos of loved ones who have died. The parade starts with a ritual circle and ends in a park filled with ofrendas. Here is the website for this year’s event!

Maria Eugenia and Gabriel (parents of Eugenio and Julieta Solis – KA and PKB), writes:”For our familly, Día de los Muertos is a day, when we eat traditional “bread of the dead” and have fun decorating and “altar”, always trying to find something new to put on it to make our dead family members happy wherever they are. We also enjoy inventing rhymes that make fun of death. Recently it has become a symbol of national pride. It is nice to know that so many people from other nationalities are interested in learning a little bit more about our culture through this celebration. 

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