Day of the Dead timeline
- October 29, 2016
In the 2015 James Bond movie, Spectre, the opening sequence features a Day of the Dead parade in Mexico City. No such parade ever existed, but due to the interest in the film and the government's desire to promote pre-Hispanic Mexican culture, the government organized an actual Día del los Muertos parade for the following year.
- October 31 annually
Día de las Brujas
Halloween in Mexico, called Día de las Brujas, is the beginning of the Days of the Dead festivities.
- November 1 annually
Día de los Inocentes
The day of the innocents, also called Day of the Little Angels, is specifically dedicated to people who died as children.
- November 2 annually
Día de los Muertos
The Day of the Dead is the final and most popular day of the three day long celebration.
Day of the Dead FAQs
What happens on the Day of the Dead?
Do you say Happy Day of the Dead?
What is an ofrenda for Día de los Muertos?
An ofrenda is a collection of offerings and decorative objects place on a ritual display during Day of the Dead celebrations.
How to Observe Day of the Dead
Take time to remember
Pick a small area in your home (a table works well) and set up a candle, a photo of a loved one, and some flowers. It's a simple act of remembrance.
Visit a community cemetery
Many cemeteries are filled with festive sounds, smells, and imagery. Even if you don't have an alter, stop by a local community event to experience the sights and sounds that fill this day.
Host a Day of the Dead event at your home
This day is meant to be celebrated with family and friends. Make a large dinner and ask people to bring a photo of a loved one that has passed away, and place all photos on a table. During dinner, go around the table and have everyone say one fun memory about their loved one. The key is to keep it fun, positive, and festive.
Why Day of the Dead is Important
You get to remember your loved ones
While death can be a mournful experience, the Day of the Dead allows us to remember the happy memories we have of our loved ones.
Alters show respect for the dead
Alters may come in different shapes and sizes, but they all serve the same purpose, to show respect and honor a late loved one. This day provides you a time to go through old photographs, letters, toys, and other items that may hold sentimental value.
The marigold is a delicate, yellow-orange flower that represents grief, but is also bright enough to guide the spirits of dead one back home.