(photo by Yvonne Condes)

Southern California is hosting many special events in honor of Día de los Muertos, also known as Day of the Dead. While customs may vary, traditionally family and friends focus on the memories of deceased loved ones. Generally, families construct Día de Los Muertos altars adorned with bright flowers, photos, candles, and meaningful objects. Celebrations are joyous, and it is a way for families to connect and remember through generations. Additionally, family and friends may paint their faces to resemble skulls (Calaveras) while their bodies are in a skeleton costume (Calacas).

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Dia de los muertos at Hollywood Forever Cemetery in Los Angeles is one of the amazing events in Los Angeles to celebrate Dia de los Muertos. #diadelosmuertos #muertos #altar #diadelosmuertosaltar #losangeles #hollywoodforevercemetery

Hollywood Forever Cemetery (photos by Yvonne Condes)

The 24th Annual Día de los Muertos Festival Presented by Zona Caffe and the Pasadena Playhouse
15 South El Molino Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101

On Saturday, October 13th,  Zona Rosa Caffe and the Pasadena Playhouse presents the 24th Annual Dia de Los Muertos/Day of the Dead Event from 3:00pm to 10:00pm at Zona Rosa Caffe and the Pasadena Playhouse. The free event will feature crafts and painting by Armory Center for the Arts, KidsArt, Bob Baker Marionettes, story time by Vroman’s Bookstore and Southern California Children’s Museum, Folklorico dancers by Quetzal Folklorico and food and drinks from from Zona Rosa Caffe, The Stand, Trejo’s Cantina and Blaze Pizza. Visit the event page for a schedule of activities/performances.

 

Hollywood Forever Cemetery
6000 Santa Monica Blvd., Los Angeles, CA 90038

This year’s Dia de los Muertos event honors the Aztec goddess, Coatlicue (/kw??t?li?kwe?/) “skirt of snakes” “mother of the gods,” who gave birth to the moon, stars, and the sun. Go dressed in Dia de los Muertos attire and enjoy Altars made by the community, Mexican food, arts & crafts and watch the cemetery come to life with in joyful celebration. The event is happening on Saturday, October 27th from noon to midnight, with ceremonial altar set-ups beginning on Friday, October 26th at 3:00 pm. Tickets are $25 per person, with children 8 years and under as well as seniors 65 and over free until 4:00 pm. Check the website for a complete schedule of events.

Muertos Art Walk on Olvera Street
El Pueblo Historical Monument
125 Paseo de la Plaza, Los Angeles, CA

The Olvera Street Muertos Artwalk on Saturday, October 6th from 10 am to 7 pm is a free, family-friendly event that bring together more than 40 artists selling original artwork, jewelry, clothing and more. Families will enjoy food, live music and face painting. The Muertos Artwalk will bring together artists from the greater Los Angeles community and will create awareness for the work being done by Olvera Street Merchants Association Foundation to keep cultural traditions alive in Los Angeles.

Día de los Muertos on Olvera Street
El Pueblo Historical Monument
125 Paseo de la Plaza, Los Angeles, CA

The Olvera Street Merchants will be hosting their annual Dia de los Muertos event from October 25th through November 2nd. Families will enjoy children’s art workshops, candlelight processions, and live performances (music, dance, theater, puppet). Community altars will be on display from October 28th through November 2nd. A more detailed schedule can be found online.

Carrera de los Muertos 5k 
Olvera Street with race start at El Pueblo Historical Monument
125 Paseo de la Plaza, Los Angeles, CA

Carrera de los Muertos on Saturday, October 27th at 8 am is a vibrant 5k run that honors Day of the Dead. Join family and friends to remember loved ones that have passed in this rich cultural tradition. You will experience a great sense of community through a little exercise, art, music and a lot of fun. Check the website for prices (it’s less expensive the earlier you register).

18th Annual Día de los Muertos Festival
Main Street Canoga Park
On Sherman Way (between Canoga and Topanga), Canoga Park, CA

This annual event is scheduled for Sunday, November 4th from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm. Families will enjoy chalk artists, dance performances, live music, vendors, a classic car show, and more.

Old Pasadena Day of the Dead
Throughout Old Pasadena, Pasadena, CA 91105 

Old Pasadena is celebrating the Day of the Dead with a three-day event beginning on Friday, November 2nd to Sunday, November 4th. During the three-day event, dozens of Old Pasadena businesses will create beautiful altars in their spaces to showcase during the self-guided Tour of Altars. The weekend also includes a Community Altar, salsa dance party with live music and calavera face painting, and more to be announced. All events are open to the public and are free admission unless otherwise noted. Check the website for a complete list of each day’s activities.

Día de los Muertos
Anaheim Indoor Marketplace
1440 S. Anaheim Blvd., Anaheim, CA 92805

The Anaheim Indoor Marketplace invites families to celebrate the Day of the Dead on Sunday, November 4th from 12:00 pm to 4:00 pm. This free event features a costume contest, arts and crafts, live Mariachi music, dance performances, face painting, and more.

San Pedro’s 7th Annual Día de los Muertos Festival
398 W. 6th St., San Pedro, CA 90731

San Pedro is celebrating Día de los Muertos on Sunday, October 28th. Historic downtown San Pedro will be the place to celebrate Día de los Muertos as the streets come alive with art, culture, delicious cuisine and live entertainment.

6th Annual Downey Día de los Muertos Art Festival
Downey Theatre
8435 Firestone Blvd., Downey, CA 90241

The city of Downey is celebrating Día de los Muertos on Sunday, October 28th from 11:00 am to 8:00 pm. This free event (with free parking) features three stages; check the website for a schedule of performances. You’ll enjoy dance, music, sculpture art, an altar competition, face painting, food trucks, and more.

Día de los Muertos Library Activities
select branches

Several Los Angeles Public Library branches will be hosting special Día de los Muertos activities throughout September and October. Activities include making papel picado, sugar skulls, mini-shrines (or Altars) – and much more. Some activities are also in honor of Latino Heritage Month. Check the main calendar listing to see all the options and branches.

Downtown Dia de los Muertos: Noche de Ofrenda
Grand Park
200 N. Grand Ave., Los Angeles, CA 90012

Downtown L.A.‘s Grand Park is kicking off its celebration of Día de los Muertos on October 27th at 7 pm. This free event features a traditional Noche de Ofrenda ceremony honoring the dead and featuring prayer led by the local indigenous community. The evening will include performances by traditional dancers representing the Aztecan, Oaxacan and Michoacán traditions, as well as Los Angeles-based poets and musicians.  The event, which will unveil a master altar that invites contributions from the entire community, kicks off the official unveiling of Grand Park’s Día de los Muertos Altars and art installations developed by local artists and community groups that will be on display in Grand Park from October 28th to November 4th.

Create Sugar Skulls At Home

If schedules prohibit you and your family from enjoying one of these celebrations around town, or if you’re looking for a fun way to get your kids involved in Día del los Muertos at home, try making sugar skulls. It’s a simple process that only requires a few ingredients. Best of all, it can be adapted so you can make enough just for your family or a large batch to share with your child’s class, as Yvonne did. Take a look at the video and step-by-step instructions below or see Yvonne’s post about how to make sugar skulls.

There are great places to celebrate Día de los Muertos in Los Angeles. #losangeles #diadelosmuertos #muertos #muertoslosangeles

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