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Day of the Dead Family Events Around Seattle, the Eastside and South Sound

How to celebrate Día de los Muertos with kids, virtually and in real life

Nancy Chaney

Published on: October 29, 2020


It'd be easy to think that a holiday called Day of the Dead would be a bit of a downer. But Día de los Muertos, as it's called in Spanish, is a festive holiday celebrated in Mexico and several other Latin American countries on Nov. 1 and 2. It does focus on deceased ancestors, but in the spirit of family, joyful memories, and connection. Whether this holiday is part of your family tradition or not, we all have departed relatives and ancestral roots worth honoring. Join a family Día de los Muertos celebration in the coming days. We've rounded up some virtual and in-person offerings here. If venturing out, remember to mask up and keep your six feet of distance.

  1. Oct. 25–Nov. 8, anytime: Take a stroll around the South Park Branch Library while reading "The Day of the Dead/El Día de los Muertos" StoryWalk which is displayed in the windows. Even the littlest walker will learn to appreciate the customs and traditions described in this colorful book. Then, learn how to draw a Day of the Dead skull of your own with Seattle Public Library's YouTube tutorial; free, all ages.
  2. Oct. 31–Nov. 15, anytime: See how others in our community create an ofrenda (altar) to honor their departed kin. The Tacoma Art Museum celebrates Día de los Muertos with a two-week-long virtual ofrenda exhibition. Gather around the computer anytime during the two-week period to view meaningful altars created by people just like you; free, all ages.
  3. Sunday, Nov. 1, 10 a.m.–5 p.m.: Enjoy some fresh air at this outdoor Día de Muertos celebration at Kruckeberg Botanical Garden. See the garden in all its fall glory while going on a Day of the Dead scavenger hunt. View the community altar, then pick-up a craft pack and a sugar skull to decorate at home. If you can't make the in-person event, view the Día de los Muertos online exhibition showcasing artwork by Latinx artists and local youth (Nov.1–Dec. 31); free admission; donations appreciated, all ages.
  4. Sunday, Nov. 1, 11 a.m.–noon: Pick up a kit to create a nicho or decorate a shrine then join a how-to Zoom workshop on Nov. 1. Celebrate the Day of the Dead with others while you create your masterpiece alongside a Mexican artist. Kits are limited and you must register in advance; pick up in Issaquah, free, all ages.
  5. Sunday, Nov. 1, noon–2 p.m.: Seattle Center's Festal series welcomes all for a virtual edition of the annual Día de Muertos Festival. Learn to paint your face in the traditional Day of the Dead fashion, watch how to make and decorate a sugar skull, explore an elaborate altar and more. Plus, join for amazing performances and music. Free, all ages. 
  6. Sunday, Nov. 1, 1–2:30 p.m.: Gather the whole family and honor deceased love ones with movement and dance. Join Henry Art Gallery for a virtual, all-ages ArtVenture program with dance artist, Alicia Mullikin. Free, registration required, all ages.
  7. Nov. 1–15, anytime: Burien has a mix of virtual and in-person offerings to celebrate the Day of the Dead this year. Jump on Facebook for storytelling, Day of the Dead how-tos, and more. Stop by the Burien Winter Market to pick up a free skeleton mobile craft kit on Nov. 5 or 12, then watch the provided tutorial to make your own Day of the Dead decor. And/or, get out and about to view the ofrendas displayed around town. Free, all ages.
  8. Monday, Nov. 2, 5:15 p.m. or 8:30 p.m.: The Shoreline Arts Council celebrates Día de los Muertos this year with a pandemic-friendly drive-in movie! Grab the snacks and pillows for a drive-in showing of the beloved Disney movie, "Coco." Cost is $25 per car, two showings offered with preregistration required. The film is rated PG.
  9. Monday, Nov. 2, 5:30 p.m.: Join El Centro de la Raza for a virtual edition of its annual Día de los Muertos celebration. Take a tour of altars created by organizations in the community. Stay tuned on Facebook for a schedule of daily activities and performances in the days following the event. Free, all ages.
  10. Monday, Nov. 2, 6:30 p.m.: Come together online with Bainbridge Island Museum of Art and the community to celebrate Día de los Muertos. Join for conversations and celebrations as they kick off a week-long ofrenda exhibit. Come by the museum Nov. 2–8 to view the exhibit and appreciate the beautiful art created to honor those who have passed. Free; all-ages.

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