Halloween is interesting. But I’ve decided that the Mexican celebration known as the Day of the Dead is better. I came to this conclusion after attending the Day of the Dead Fiesta at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center located at 1355 West 3100 South in West Valley City.
It was fun. There was a scary dance performance by men, women, and children dressed in skulls, black and sinister clothing, and dramatic feathers that reached high into the air. Most were scary, although one girl wore a skirt with rhinestone skulls that were so cute they didn't do much to intimidate. (Eat your heart out Damien Hirst.) The dancers performed to live, exhilarating drumming. I was amazed at how much music three drummers can create. It’s startling how powerful such pounding rhythms can be. And watching little kids react is fantastic.
That was only part of the fun. The Day-of-the-Dead shrines were just plain cool, replete with skulls and candles and notes and pictures and colors and paintings and more. We also got to decorate miniature sugar skulls with glittery glue (see the inset photo). And a Day-of-the-Dead celebration just wouldn’t be complete without pan de muerto (day-of-the-dead bread).
What a wonderful way to remember some of my favorite people who are no longer here.