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Dia de los Muertos in the Magic City

APR Calavera

The memory of lost loved ones will be on full display in the Magic City this week. Birmingham is celebrating its nineteenth annual Dia de los Muertos celebration.

The holiday originated in Mexico but is celebrated by Latin American communities worldwide. It combines indigenous Aztec rituals with Catholic customs and is tied to All Saints Day.

The event will span four days from November second through November 5th at Birmingham’s Pepper Palace. The arts non-profit Bare Hands Incorporated is organizing the event. Keri Lane is the festival director. She said the holiday will help people heal after nearly two years of losses.

“You’re coming together and you’re putting out mementos and items for the people you’ve lost and you’re inviting them to come celebrate with you for this one special night of the year. This year and last year I would say there’s been an inordinate amount of loss in our community and pain, and this is a chance for people to come together and grieve together and find healing. “

She also said decisions about the celebration were made during the summer coronavirus surge fueled by the Delta Variant.

“We needed to make this decision in August so we could have proper planning time with permitting with the city. So, we felt with the number going up, we felt that the best solution would be to limit the number of people to limit the number of people and host the festival four night instead of one night with thousands of people packed in.”

Tickets are limited to one thousand per day. The festival is going to feature merchants, food trucks, live music, and bars. Attendees can leave mementos for departed loved ones and pets at the event’s public altars.

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