Day of the Dead

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Day of the Dead exhibition, 2014

People of all cultures honor the memories of their ancestors. In many parts of Mexico, South America, and the United States, El Día de los Muertos, or the Day of the Dead, is a time to honor and celebrate deceased loved ones. Community participation is an essential part of this holiday that is full of life, reflection, food, family and fun.

Longmont’s annual Día de los Muertos celebration is the Longmont Museum’s signature event and the largest Day of the Dead celebration in Colorado, attracting more than 6,000 people to the exhibit, family event and related programming. The celebration demonstrates how a diverse community can come together to share a common desire – to honor our ancestors and keep their memories alive.


October 13—November 6; free admission
The Dia de los Muertos exhibition will be in the Museum’s Swan Atrium—a two-story space full of light and life. In partnership with the Mexican Cultural Center, the Longmont Museum is proud to showcase Xólotl: Dios Perro, a monumental alebrije sculpture by international artist Oscar Becerra. Alebrije are brightly colored Mexican folk art sculptures of fantastical creatures. Altars for the dead created by community members will also be a central part of the exhibition.

Opening reception

Friday, October 12, 6—8 pm; free admission
For the third year, Cyclhops Mexican Cantina will provide their complimentary deluxe nacho bar, a delicious part of our celebration. Cash bar.

Family Celebration

Saturday, November 3, 11 am—3 pm; free admission
Join in the fun and enjoy live music and dancing, sugar skull decorating, traditional food, community altars, paper flower making, face painting, Lady Catrina, and more! Come dressed in your finest calaca (skeleton) apparel.

Overflow parking and shuttle transportation during the family celebration will be available at Woodley’s Fine Furniture, 1400 S. Main St, Longmont, CO and at the SVVSD Innovation Center, 33 Quail Rd, Longmont, CO. Visitors are advised to avoid the intersection of Main Street and Quail Road and approach the Museum from the east. Any cars parked illegally may be ticketed or towed.

Exhibition Programming 

Gallery Talk with Oscar Becerra
Thursday, October 4, 6:30 pm; free admission
Enjoy an exhibition preview with renowned Mexican artist and anthropologist Oscar Becerra as he describes his monumental alebrije sculpture, part of this year’s Día de los Muertos exhibition. Becerra will dive into the origin and significance of alebrijes and explain his papier-mâché creation process.

Film: Coco
Thursday, October 11, 7:15 pm; $8 general admission, $5 Museum members
On Día de los Muertos, young would-be musician Miguel crosses into the afterlife on a quest to meet his ancestors and understand his family legacy. There, the charming trickster Hector (Gael Garcia Bernal) becomes an unexpected friend who helps Miguel uncover the mysteries behind his family’s stories and traditions. Buy tickets online

Day of the Dead Exhibition Tours: Curator Conversation
Tuesday, October 16, noon; free admission
Join a Longmont Museum Curator for a guided tour of the exhibition.

Bilingual Tours
Saturdays, October 13, 20, and 27, 1 pm and 2:30 pm; free admission
Don’t miss the chance to share an authentic relationship with Día de los Muertos through our free tour of the exhibition with bilingual tour guide Laura Zavala. Laura will tell you about the ancient Mayan and Aztec origins of the celebration, how it blended with Spanish Catholic traditions, and how it became a part of our local culture here in Longmont.

The Living & the Dead: An Evening of Storytelling
Thursday, October 25, 7:15 pm; $10 general admission, $7 Museum members
Honoring the dead is universal. This storytelling event will illuminate how different cultures approach death in celebration, mourning, and remembrance. Enjoy personal and traditional stories from Central America and around the world. This event is presented in collaboration with Rocky Mountain Storytelling. Arrive early to enter a drawing for the chance to tell your own five-minute story. Buy tickets online 

Sugar Skull Making Day
Sunday, October 28, 1 pm; free admission
Drop in to this family-friendly event and learn to make sugar skulls. You will help make sugar skulls that will be decorated during the November 3 Family Celebration. Children will need adult assistance. We will begin making sugar skulls at 1 pm and will continue until the sugar runs out!

Stirring the Melting Pot: A Panel Discussion on Cultural Appropriation
Thursday, November 1, 7:15 pm; free admission
Join us for a lively and heartfelt conversation with local community leaders as they share their experiences with cultural appropriation and examine the risks and rewards of sharing their traditions with the wider community. Moderated by educator Adriana “Lupita” Ramirez. Followed by Q & A.

Partner Events around Town

Dance, stay, and play for Día de los Muertos the weekend of November 2 - 3! Friday, November 2 our partner the Firehouse Art Center is hosting their 6th Annual Gigantes Procession and Catrina Ball at the Dickens Opera House. Dance the night away Friday night, stay overnight with a "Day of the Dead" group discount at one of our nearby partner hotels (the Fairfield Inn or Candlewood Suites), and then play with your family all day at the Museum's Family Celebration Saturday!

Explore even more altars for the dead created by community members at businesses throughout downtown Longmont. Take a self-guided walking tour, a guided walking tour, or a trolley tour. Learn more on the Downtown Longmont website.


Thanks to our sponsors who make these events possible!

Poster logos at bottom

BMOCA logo



Community Altar Day of the Dead dancer Day of the Dead Mariachis Decorating sugar skulls


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