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Day of the Dead

Day of the Dead ExhibitOctober 10 to November 15, 2009

People of all cultures honor the memories of their ancestors. In many parts of Mexico, South America, and the United States, El Día de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, is a time to honor and celebrate deceased loved ones. Community participation is an essential part of this holiday that is full of life, reflection, food, family, and fun.

A key part of the celebration is preparing an altar, where photographs, favorite foods, and personal momentos of deceased loved ones are arranged. Altars are often displayed in the home and at the cemetery. Skeletons and skulls made of sugar, bread, ceramics or papier-mâché provide final touches. No expense or effort is spared.

Longmont’s annual Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration is the Longmont Museum’s signature event and one of the largest Day of the Dead celebrations in Colorado, attracting over 4000 people to the exhibit, family event, and related programming. Entering its ninth year, the celebration demonstrates how a diverse community can come together to share a common identity – honoring our ancestors and keeping their memories alive.

Svein Edland ALtarThis year the Museum’s exhibit places special emphasis on community memories. New displays include visitors’ personal messages written to loved ones that were shared in the exhibit over the past eight years, photographs from past Longmont Day of the Dead celebrations, and a station where visitors can share how their culture and community honors their ancestors. 

Community altars – the heart of the exhibit – will also be on display.

PROGRAMS

Presentation: Ofrenda a Mictlancihuatl
(Offering to the Goddess of the Underworld)
Wednesday, October 14, 2009, 7 pm
Maruca Salazar, Director of the Museo de las Americas in Denver, explores ancient traditions of honoring the dead during pre-Columbian times. Watch and learn as she builds a primitive altar and explains its symbolism.
Free Admission.

Volunteer Sugar Skull Making Day
Sunday, October 18, 2009, 1 to 4 pm
Help make sugar skulls for the October 31 event. Groups of 8 or more, please call ahead - 303-651-8723.
Free Admission.

Dancing Skeletons!
Saturday, October 24, 2009, 11 am to 12:30 pm
Create a dancing skeleton puppet to take home. Taught by artists Rita Wallace and Julia Marino.
Ages 5 and up, parents welcome.
$5 per child, $4 for 2nd child, $3 for 3rd child, preregistration required.

Skull Masks at the Longmont Public Library
409 4th Avenue, 303-651-8477
Monday, October 26, 2009, 6 to 8 pm
Make and decorate your own skull mask! Ages 3 and up.
Free Admission.

Día de los Muertos - Family Celebration
Saturday, October 31, 2009, 10 am to 5 pm
Music, dancing, singing, sugar skull decorating, traditional food, community altars, paper flower making, Día de los Muertos tattoos, and more.

Courtyard Entertainment
11:30 am –12:30 pm......Kalpulli Mitotilitztli Aztec Dance Group
1 – 1:45 pm....................Canciones de Mi Tierra and Coro San Juan
2 – 2:45 pm....................Alternatives for Youth Folklorico Dancers
Free Admission.