Day of the Dead Festival
Day of the Dead Festival 2017
Mark your calendars for the MVMC’s 6th annual Day of the Dead Festival!
Sunday, October 29th
During this one-day event and fundraiser, The MVMC’s yard is transformed into a colorful and traditionally decorated cemetery to honor our deceased loved ones. There will be delicious authentic food, kids activities, face painting, cultural information, music, and dancing!
You don’t want to miss this fun festival that many consider Moab’s cultural event of the year!
What is Day of the Dead?
The Day of the Dead has been celebrated by indigenous peoples in the Americas for over 4000 years. With the arrival of the Spanish in the 1500’s, the festivities were merged with the Catholic’s All Saints Day in an attempt to Christianize the celebration.
Today, regardless of one’s religious beliefs, this time of year is a very spiritual celebration of the circle of life and death. It is a time to celebrate and remember the lives of loved ones who have passed on. It is a festive occasion celebrating the people’s lives and a happy time to be able to spend time with their spirits.
This day is celebrated in all parts of Latin America. In Mexico it is the most important celebration of the year. Preparations are begun weeks in advance.
Traditionally, this is one day of the year when the spirits of the dead are allowed to come back and visit the families. Altars are set up in the houses to welcome them.
Many take this very literally believing that the spirits really do come back. To others, it is more symbolic; a time to honor and remember the lives of loved ones. In any case, the preparations are taken very seriously.
Homes are cleaned. Decorations are made by hand. Copal is burned to purify the home. Decorations are placed on the graves. A path of flowers is placed from the entrance of the home leading to the altar.
There are regional differences in deigns and ideas, but the meaning is the same. There are dances and music to make the journey for the spirits more pleasant.