Dia de los Muertos, or “Day of the Dead,” is one of the most important holidays in Mexico and a highly anticipated holiday even in the United States. Celebrations take place over the course of several days (October 29 – November 2) and consist of a variety of activities to honor the deceased: many build private altars called ofrendas and decorate sugar skulls. Families will often bring those along with marigolds and the favorite foods and beverages to the graves of their loved ones as gifts. Here’s where to spend Dia de Los Muertos 2016 in San Diego.
Old Town San Diego’s Día de los Muertos is a celebration of the history, culture, and heritage of the region that honors one of its most important holidays. It is at this time that the spirits of loved ones who have died return to earth to celebrate with friends and family, during this happy, festive, and artistic time.
October 29: 11:00 AM to 9:00 PM
October 30: 11:00 AM to 6:30 PM
November 2: 4:30 PM. Procession Starts at 6:30 PM.
Tour of Altars
Visit over 40 altars of remembrance presented in both traditional and contemporary ways, including a public altar where you are encouraged to participate by adding your own mementos and photos.
The candlelight procession is only on November 2 (6:30pm). Participants can purchase electronic candles at several locations, as seen on the map. The procession symbolizes community unity and will proceed from the state park to El Campo Santo cemetery.
We encourage visitors to come in Day of Dead costume or sugar skull face paint and add to the celebration!
Join one of San Diego’s most authentic and longest standing Dia de los Muertos Celebration in the heart of Sherman Heights! Come embrace Mexican culture and experience a traditional celebration, honoring our departed loved ones.
Noche de Mole – Opening Reception & Alter Preview
Thursday, October 20 / 6:30pm-9pm
The Sherman Heights Community Center invites you to its Noche de Mole Opening Reception to kick off the festivities for the 22nd Annual Día de los Muertos Celebration in the heart of Sherman Heights! Enjoy a variety of mole sauces, a traditional Mexican cuisine. The evening will feature live music, a special dance performance by Sherman Heights/DanzArtsSD Ballet Folklórico, a silent auction, and a preview of more than 20 community altars.
Saturday, October 22 / 10am-5pm
Join one of San Diego’s most authentic and longest standing Dia de los Muertos Celebration in the heart of Sherman Heights! Embrace Mexican culture and experience a traditional celebration, honoring our departed loved ones. This fun-filled day begins with an official blessing of the community altars, followed by live performances, food, shopping and self-guided altar tours.
Desayuno Con Los Muertos
Sunday, October 30 / 9am-12pm
Guests are invited to a community breakfast in memory of those who have passed away. The menu includes: Menudo, Tamales, Champurrado, Aguas Frescas, Café de Olla, and Pan de Muertos.
Muertos Candlelight Procession
Wednesday, November 2 / 6pm-9pm
We invite you to participate in the Annual Muertos Candlelight Procession from the Sherman Heights Community Center to the Historic Chicano Park in Barrio Logan. We encourage guests to bring a candle and/or pictures of departed loved ones as we march in their memory. Dia de los Muertos facepainting and/or costumes highly encouraged!
October 30; 10am-4pm
Mission San Luis Rey: 4050 Mission Ave., Oceanside
Experience Dia de Los Muertos at one of the most traditional and serene settings in Southern California. As you take in traditional Day of the Dead tributes such as chalk cemeteries, floral alters, and other such remembrances, be sure to check out the historic Mission; one of the most ornate in San Diego. Activities include altar-making, a car show, live entertainment, various arts and crafts for the whole family, a chalk cemetery, and of course, plenty of delicious food and drink.
October 22; 2pm-10pm
La Vista Memorial Park & Mortuary
Centuries of tradition come alive as part of La Vista Memorial Park’s annual celebration of Día De Los Muertos (Day of the Dead). It’s one of the largest annual family-oriented events in the South Bay, and has all the ingredients needed to create a fun and memorable outing: food, music, a fabulous art walk, costumes, live entertainment, arts and crafts, and the always-popular altar contest and runway fashion show, “Catrina Contest.”
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