Día De Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a holiday celebrated throughout Mexico and by people of Mexican descent living elsewhere, especially the United States.
Director for Diversity Bahar Alamadadi developed the idea of hosting this event at Davis campus on Oct. 28., despite usually being celebrated on Nov. 2.
This international celebration focuses on gatherings of family and friends to pray for and remember friends and family members who have passed away and help support their spiritual journey.
“I think that it went pretty well. I had the support from all my team from Davis campus,” said Alimadadi.
There were about 15 members from the Davis campus leadership team present as well as 30 dancers from Ballet Folklórico Tutulli, which were contacted by Alamadadi through the Center for Multicultural Excellence.
Ballet dancer Anajelly Ware was happy to showcase her culture to the audience, including her husband and daughter.
“Growing up, I tried a lot of groups, and I never felt welcome until I tried to dance for the Ballet Folklórico Tutulli,” Ware said. “It is interesting to do this type of activity because the tradition is being forgotten with time.”
Although Dia de los Muertos is celebrated during the week of Halloween, it is a celebration of life, where people get together at night to tell stories over drinks and food.
For these gatherings, people bring a variety of things to decorate the altars of their loved ones: significant objects, photos and colorful tablecloths to commemorate the good times.
Isac Castañeda, father of one of the dancers, attended the event to see his daughter present their culture through dance. His daughter has been dancing in Ballet Folklórico Tutulli for over two months.
“I am very proud of my daughter. It was an entertaining presentation, full of colors,” Castañeda said.
There were different activities for children and adults at the event, like face painting, skull coloring pages and dancing.
“We wanted to make sure to help the Hispanic community to have a voice and bridge the gap,” said Alimadadi.
In many U.S. communities with a large Mexican population, the Day of the Dead celebrations are similar to those held in Mexico.
Within our community, WSU’s diversity team will continue to host activities like this to continue including the community in significant events related to their culture and holidays.