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Day of the Dead

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On October 31, All Hallows Eve, the children make a children's altar to invite the angelitos (spirits of dead children) to come back for a visit. November 1 is All Saints Day, and the adult spirits will come to visit. November 2 is All Souls Day, when families go to the cemetery to decorate the graves and tombs of their relatives. The three-day fiesta is filled with marigolds, the flowers of the dead; muertos (the bread of the dead); sugar skulls; cardboard skeletons; tissue paper decorations; fruit and nuts; incense, and other traditional foods and decorations.

Day of the Dead is not just a Mexican holiday.  Prior to Spanish colonization in the 16th century, the celebration took place at the beginning of summer. Over time, it became associated with the Western Christian period of three days following Lent: All Saints’ Eve, All Saints’ Day, and All Souls’ Day.  

Scholars trace the origins of the modern Mexican holiday to indigenous observances dating back hundreds of years and to an Aztec festival dedicated to the Goddess Mictecacihuatl.  The holiday has spread throughout the world, being absorbed within other deep traditions for honoring the dead.

Source: Wikipedia 2017

Festivals, Parades and Crafts to Honor the Dead