Several events, including one at Seattle Center, celebrate the Day of the Dead this weekend.
Dia de Muertos, A Mexican Celebration to Remember Our Departed, at Seattle Center Armory on Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 29-30, features traditional music and dance performances including an opening procession led by Tloke Nahuake Aztec Dancers. The procession will pay tribute to traditional altars decorated by community members in memory of departed loved ones, neighbors and prominent people that are the festival’s centerpiece, stopping at each one to dedicate an offering in dance.
Based on ancient indigenous rituals in Mexico and influenced by Catholic All Souls Day traditions, Dia de los Muertos combines art, spirituality and culture to remember and celebrate family and loved ones who’ve died. The holiday emphasizes the cycle of life and death and is said to be the time of year when our deceased loved ones and ancestors are nearest to us and are welcomed with altar displays, music, food, sugar skulls and festivities. It’s the 15th annual celebration of the holiday at Seattle Center, one of several in the Seattle area as Dia de los Muertos events have become more popular in recent years.
Traditional folk dance and music performances highlight the diversity of Mexico’s states including Oaxacan music by La Banda Gozona, Dance of the Elders from Michoacan by Danza de Patzcuaro, Correo Aereo, Bailadores de Bronce, Grupo Guadalajara and Joyas Mestizas. Arts and crafts activities for all ages and a Mexican marketplace featuring food vendors offering tamales and pan de muerto sweet bread are among festival attractions Saturday and Sunday at Seattle Center Armory.
Dia de Muertos
Time: 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sunday, Oct. 29-30
Location: Seattle Center Armory, Seattle
More info: 206-684-7200 or seattlecenter.com/festal/detail.aspx?id=19
Dia de los Muertos / Day of the Dead Celebration
Time: 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, Oct. 28
Location: Burien Community Center, 14700 Sixth Ave. S.W., Burien
More info: 206-988-3700 or burienwa.gov/index.aspx?NID=900
Dia de los Muertos Celebration
Time: 5 to 8 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 1
Location: Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, 4408 Delridge Way S.W., Seattle
More info: 206-935-2999 or youngstownarts.org/event/dia-de-los-muertos-celebration/?instance_id=42701
Dia de los Muertos opening night Celebration
Time: 5 to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 1
Ofrenda exhibit: 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, Fridays, noon to 8 p.m. Thursdays, Nov. 2-18
Location: El Centro de la Raza, 2524 16th Ave. S., Seattle
More info: 206-957-4605 or elcentrodelaraza.org/events/event/dia-de-los-muertos-exhibit-opening-event
Dia de los Muertos Festival
Time: 4 to 7 p.m. Nov. 5
Location: Phinney Neighborhood Center, 6532 Phinney Ave. N., Seattle
More info: 206-783-2244 or phinneycenter.org/dia
Other local celebrations include Dia de los Muertos/Day of the Dead Celebration with altars, arts and crafts, traditional music and dance, food and stories Friday, Oct. 28, at Burien Community Center; Dia de los Muertos altars, performances and food Tuesday, Nov. 1, at Youngstown Cultural Arts Center, Seattle; and Dia de los Muertos Festival at Phinney Neighborhood Center, Seattle, on Nov. 5. Seattle’s El Centro de la Raza celebrates the opening of its Dia de los Muertos ofrenda altar exhibit in tribute to social justice martyrs who’ve given their lives fighting for voting rights and equal justice for all at a dinner with performances and activities for children Tuesday, Nov. 1. The ofrenda exhibit continues weekdays through Nov. 18.
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All events are free.