Dia De Los Muertos Celebration

Kristin Rosenmund, Administrator

For many people who are not involved in Mexican culture, they see the days after Halloween as a day to recover from the previous night’s sugar rush of candy, trick or treating, and dressing up.  For those who are part of Mexican culture, November 1st and 2nd are a day of celebrating their lost loved ones. This celebration is known as Dia de los Muertos or “The Day of the Dead.”  The typical household on Dia De Los Muertos has an ofrenda set up for a family member, friend, or someone close to them that they have lost.  The ofrenda consists of a picture of the person, skeleton skulls, marigolds, candles, and the person’s favorite food to welcome them back, along with any other sentimental items the maker of the ofrenda chooses to add. 

This year, the Latin American Student Organization (LASO) club held their annual Dia de Los Muertos celebration right in the quad of Rio Mesa!  Families were invited to partake in the celebration which took place on November 2nd from 6:00 – 8:30.  Upon arrival through the gates, families were led into the celebration through a trail of marigold petals scattered on the ground.   Once in the quad, there was a plethora of activities, food, and entertainment to watch.  

In the library, ofrendas made by Freshman-Senior Spanish classes were put on display.  Some students choose to make an ofrenda for celebrities who have passed such as Marilyn Monroe, Selena, Kobe Bryant, and more.  Many students also made a more personal ofrenda by making one for a family member they lost such as a grandparent, or even a dog.  In the College and Career center, the Art Club had a face painting station set up where students and family members could get a Dia de Los Muertos inspired skeleton look painted on their face.  For food options, the Avid Club had churros for sale, and the newly induced Caring Closet club had refreshments and chips for sale.

The founder and President of the Caring Closet Club, Jamie Garcia had her first experience making an ofrenda this year, for her cousin who had recently passed away.  She included marigolds, candles, and Chick-Fil-A, her cousin’s favorite food.

“It felt emotional making the ofrenda, but it was also special to remember who she was and what she loved,” Jamie Garcia stated when talking about her Dia de Los Muertos celebration.

The night culminated with a spectacular performance by the Ballet Folklorico club on the stage in the quad, where family members and friends gathered around to watch on the grass area.

While remembering ones we’ve lost can be difficult, there is also something special about celebrating what once was, and what we had the pleasure to know.