Dia de los Muertos

Sayde Blanchette, Reporter

Dia de los Muertos, Day of the Dead, is one of the largest Mexican holidays. It is celebrated on November 1-2 and marks the day when the gates of the afterlife open and departed souls can reunite with their living family members.

This holiday has been celebrated for thousands of years, dating back to rituals honoring the dead in pre-Columbian Mesoamerica. In this culture, the souls of the dead are believed to reside in Chicunamictlán, the Land of the Dead. They must face nine challenging levels to reach Mictlán, the final resting place. In some rituals, family members of the departed offer them food, water, and other tools to aid them in their journey. These practices inspired the modern-day Dia de los Muertos celebrations, when people often leave food or gifts on the graves of their deceased family members. Practitioners may also create altars to honor their loved ones.

Dia de los Muertos is celebrated among those with Mexican heritage throughout the world. Similar to Halloween, it is celebrated with costumes and parades. People have the chance to celebrate with their deceased loved ones by feasting, dancing, drinking, and more.

In 2017, Disney produced the animated film, “Coco,” which brought more appreciation to the holiday. “Coco” tells the story of a young boy named Miguel who is accidentally transported to the Land of the Dead, where meets his deceased musician great-great-grandfather and enlists his help to return to the world of the living. “Coco” is an entertaining family-friendly film for anyone who wants to learn more about this holiday.

This year there will be several Dia de los Muertos celebrations in the Dallas area. The Lawn at Grandscape in The Colony will host a celebration on October 30, 2022, from 2-6 p.m.. The AT&T Dallas Día de Los Muertos Parade and Festival will be held at City Hall Plaza in downtown Dallas on Saturday, October 29, from 2-10 p.m.. Denton’s Day of the Dead Festival is October 28-29 on Hickory St. in Denton. There are many other celebrations happening in Frisco and surrounding areas, so be sure to look at upcoming events!