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Día de Muertos Celebration to be Held in West Hartford

Dia de Muertes. Submitted photo

Two free Día de Muertos celebrations are planned, one on Nov. 1 at University of Saint Joseph in West Hartford and another on Nov. 2 at the Connecticut Historical Society.

Dia de Muertes. Submitted photo


The Connecticut Cultural Heritage Arts Program will join the University of Saint Joseph and the Mariachi Academy of New England to host a free, two-day celebration of Día de Muertos/Day of the Dead with two free events. 

The first event, held at 6-8 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 1 at the University of Saint Joseph’s Bruyette Athenaeum, includes a lantern-making workshop, mariachi parade, “La Catrina” skeleton costume contest with cash prizes, poetry, and refreshments. 

The second event, held at the Connecticut Historical Society on Saturday, Nov. 2 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m., includes activities such as tours of traditional ofrendas, or small altars set up by local families, decorating sugar cookie skulls, composing satirical calaveras poetry, and making papel picado, cut-paper decorations.  There also will be live performances by the Mariachi Academy and Mariachi México Antiguo, food trucks and other refreshments.

Both events focus on the history and traditions of Día de Muertos/Day of the Dead which is a jubilant Mexican tradition that welcomes departed family members, celebrates life, and pokes fun at death.  These events are supported by the Greater Hartford Arts Council’s United Arts Campaign with major support from the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving; the University of Saint Joseph; the National Endowment for the Arts; and the CT Office of the Arts/DECD.

The Connecticut Historical Society (www.CHS.org) is a private, not-for-profit educational organization that includes a museum, library, and the Edgar F. Waterman Research Center.  Founded in 1825, the CHS is the state’s official historical society and one of the oldest in the nation.  The CHS, a Smithsonian Affiliate, works to connect visitors to the story of Connecticut, and to help create a society that values historical perspective and understanding as essential tools in shaping communities and making informed decisions.  To accomplish that, the CHS has collected more than 4 million manuscripts, graphics, books, artifacts, and other historical materials related to Connecticut’s social, cultural, and family history – which are available to the public onsite at One Elizabeth Street in Hartford, off-site at other locations, and online.

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