On Saturday, October 30th, Santa Monica hosted its 11th annual Día de los Muertos event on the city’s Third Street Promenade. The celebrations, organized by Downtown Santa Monica Inc., included traditional dancing, live music, face painting, and vendors from Angel City Market.
The event celebrated the Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead), a Mexican holiday that is around 3,000 years old. The holiday arose as a way to show respect and honor the dead. Today, every November 1st and 2nd, Latinos, especially Mexicans, from around the world gather to celebrate the lives of their former family members and loved ones.
The holiday is significant to many people, including Normz La Oaxaqueña, an organizer of the event. “This year is very important to me and now it’s special for me,” said La Oaxaqueña.
This is their first event in Santa Monica for Día de los Muertos. She decided to coordinate it because vacation is a strong part of her culture.
La Oaxaqueña is Oaxaqueña, which refers to their connection to the Mexican state of Oaxaca, and Día de los Muertos is one of the most important days for their people. For La Oaxaqueña, the holiday is a beautiful tradition because it reminds of the lives of their former loved ones. “Losing a loved one is sad and tragic, so this holiday is a great way to keep their memory alive,” she said.