The fifth annual Dia de Muertos celebration and parade kicks off Sunday, Oct. 23, at 2 pm with pre-parade family activities at K-12/Tejas Gallery. Participants are encouraged to arrive early to make colorful parade accessories, learn traditional Mexican folk dance moves and transform your face into a sugar skull with the help of professional artists and students from Decoy Art Studio. An exciting element of Dia de Muertos is being a part of the action, so plan ahead and bring strollers and wagons for young children. An El Meson food truck will be on hand for tasty choices until the parade lines up.
The parade will take off from K-12/Tejas Gallery toward Fifth Street at 4 pm, travel through the Oregon District and stop at Missing Peace Art Space, located across from Stivers School for the Arts at Fifth and Dutoit streets. St. Mary’s will be there serving up traditional Mexican food and Pa’s Pork will offer other eclectic choices.
Entertainment will begin as soon as the parade arrives, with the legendary Rev. Cool Carter as master of ceremonies spinning records between acts until 9 pm. Ballet Folklorico Orgullo Mexicano will be back to delight the crowd with traditional dancing, and returning storyteller Alicia Pagan will capture the imaginations of both young and old. This year, guitarist Ramon Perez El Alacran de Durango will perform with his daughter, and the Lucha Libre rock band Team Void will bring a new sound to the celebration.
The Missing Peace Art Space will display personal ofrendas, traditional altars recalling the lives of loved ones who have passed. Artist Tiffany Clark will offer a community ofrenda for families and friends of heroin loss, and the Tree of Life congregation will honor the lives of those lost at Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Fla. A general outdoor altar will offer the opportunity to leave memorial notes and light candles for loved ones.
Be sure to put us on your calendar for a day of celebration and healing as we honor the traditional Mexican memorial holiday of Dia de Muertos, recalling the beauty of lives gone before us, and including all cultures in a celebration that is uniquely Dayton.
Dia de Muertos Dayton — A Movable Celebration of Life – Sunday, Oct. 23,
2 to 4 pm: Pre-parade activities at K-12/Tejas Gallery, 314 S. Jefferson St., Dayton
4 pm: Parade leaves K-12/Tejas Gallery and travels toward Fifth Street
4:30 pm: Celebration at Missing Peace Art Space, 234 S. Dutoit St.
Story contributed by Joy Levett