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Longmont Hosts Colorado’s Largest Day of the Dead Celebration | Press Release

Longmont Hosts Colorado’s Largest Day of the Dead Celebration | Press Release


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Press Releases are provided to Yellow Scene. In an effort to keep our community informed, we are now publishing some press peleases in whole. 

September 22, 2020 


Longmont Hosts Colorado’s Largest Day of the Dead Celebration 

In many parts of Mexico, Central 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 essential to this holiday that is full of life, reflection, food, family and fun. The celebration demonstrates how a diverse community can come together to share a common desire – to honor our ancestors and keep their memories alive. 

Marking it’s 20th anniversary this year, Longmont’s annual Día de los Muertos celebration is the largest in the state of Colorado; the exhibition and family celebration at the Longmont Museum alone attract more than 8,000 people from across the region each year. Día de los Muertos in Longmont has expanded to become an entire City affair. The Longmont Museum partners with a host of individuals and community organizations with cultural expertise to create an experience for Día de los Muertos that is rooted in respect and authenticity. 

Much of the signature celebration has been reimagined into virtual events this year, to keep the community safe during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.   


Día de los Muertos Exhibition at the Longmont Museum
October 2–January 9; $8 adults, $5 students/seniors
Día de los Muertos makes its return to the Museum’s main gallery this fall for a special exhibition of community ofrendas (altars) and the artwork of renowned Colorado artist Tony Ortega. Ortega’s lifelong goal is to contribute to a better understanding of diversity by addressing the culture, history, and experiences of Latinx people through his vibrant art. The exhibition will include his paintings, prints, mixed media works, illustrations from book collaborations with George Rivera, and a newly commissioned original mural located in downtown Longmont in honor of our 20th Diìa de los Muertos anniversary. 

Día de los Muertos Exhibition at the Firehouse Art Center
October 8 – November 8; free
Día de los Muertos 2020, curated by Grace Gutierrez, will showcase the work of Adrian Raya, Cal Duran, Javier Flores and Ramon Trujillo. At the heart of this exhibit are their meticulously crafted altars. Their ofrendas address local events of historical significance, chronicling the relationship between faith, family, history and culture, while promoting reflection on how history can guide us through this trying year. 


Virtual Longmont Museum Día de los Muertos Exhibition Opening Reception
Thursday, October 1, 7:30–9 pm; free
Live-streamed to Longmont Museum’s Facebook, LongmontPublicMedia.org, and Local Comcast Channel 8/880
Join us from home for live performance by Grupo Azteca Tlahuitzcalli, an artist talk with Tony Ortega, and conversations with altar builders from the gallery. 

Virtual Local Talent Showcase
Sunday, October 4, 2:30–4 pm; free
Live-streamed to Longmont Museum’s Facebook, LongmontPublicMedia.org, and Local Comcast Channel 8/880
Enjoy cultural performances of music and dance to kick off your month-long Diìa de los Muertos celebration by some of Longmont’s most talented local groups, including Nahucalli Folklorico youth dance, Skyline and Timberline Mariachi Bands, Bailes de me Tierra dance, and more! 

Firehouse Art Center Exhibition Opening
October 9, 6-10 pm; free in person at the Firehouse with timed-ticketing
Beginning with a Day of the Dead Invocation led by Grupo Azteca Tlahuitzcalli, the Firehouse Art Center will unveil the new exhibit to honor Día de los Muertos. Meet the artists and bid in the Catrina Painting Auction.  

Downtown Altar Tours
October 9–November 2
Downtown Longmont businesses will unveil their ofrenda displays on 2nd Friday, October 9. Maps for self-guided tours of all business altar locations will be available at downtown businesses, as well as at the Longmont Downtown Development Authority office at 320 Main St. 

Virtual Dia de los Muertos Art & Sip
Thursday, October 29, 7:30 pm; $10, $8 optional supply kit fee (494000.23)
WebEx virtual meeting space

Paint colorful rocks while you learn about the history and significance of the calavera (skull), cempasuchil (marigold), and monarca (monarch butterfly) in Day of the Dead celebrations. Place your finished rocks on your family altar to honor your departed loved ones on November 1. 

Virtual Day of the Dead Celebration
Sunday, November 1, 2:30–4pm; free
Live-streamed to Longmont Museum’s Facebook, LongmontPublicMedia.org, and Local Comcast Channel 8/880

We won’t be able to gather together for our usual downtown festival due to COVID-19, but you can celebrate Day of the Dead from home with all of the performances you love live-streamed right to your computer, tablet, or phone. Performers include Las Dahlias singing Mexican trio, Grupo Folklorico Mexico Lindo dance, mariachi, poetry by bicultural community leader Laura Soto, and much more! To help you get your Diìa de Muertos celebration started at home, the Longmont Museum is offering free custom supply kits for curbside pickup.  

LongmontDayoftheDead.com (English)
LongmontDiadelosMuertos.com (Espanol) 

Our weekly web content will prepare you and your family to create your own Diìa de Muertos celebration at home. Every week in October, you can visit Longmont’s Day of the Dead website for newly released thematic content highlighting the origins and traditions that make Day of the Dead a meaningful holiday.

September 29: History of Diìa de Muertos
October 6: Ofrendas y Altares (offerings and altars) 
October 13: Music, Arts, & Crafts
October 20: Diìa de Muertos Regional Specialties 
October 27: Food and Drinks—Cooking with Family 


Dia de los Muertos in Longmont is presented by NextLight. A special thanks to the other supporters who make these events possible: The City of Longmont, The National Endowment for the Arts & Humanities, Elevations Credit Union, Visit Longmont, The Scientific and Cultural Facilities District, The Community Foundation Serving Boulder County, The Longmont Community Foundation, The Mexican Cultural Center, The Consulate General of Mexico, The Longmont Multicultural Action Committee, The Boulder County Commissioner’s Diversity Fund, and Longmont Sister Cities.

The Longmont Museum is a center for culture in Northern Colorado where people of all ages explore history, experience art and discover new ideas through dynamic programs, exhibitions and events. Learn more at www.longmontmuseum.org

Founded in 1986 the mission of the Firehouse Art Center is to inspire cultural awareness and human connection by providing life enhancing experiences through art appreciation, education and self expression. You can learn more by visiting www.firehouseart.org or call (303) 651-2787.   

The Longmont Downtown Development Authority (LDDA) works to develop, support and promote a vital and valuable Downtown Longmont. Through strategic development and programs, the LDDA makes downtown appealing to businesses, residents and visitors. Visit www.downtownlongmont.com to learn more. 



DOD Dancers: Traditional dancers perform at last year’s Longmont Museum Dia de los Muertos celebration. Photo provided by the Longmont Museum.

Cholo Vato: Tony Ortega, “Days of the Dead: Aztec Adventures of Cholo, Vato and Pano,” 1998, pastel. Photo courtesy of the artist.


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