Ever since 2018, Los Latinos Unidos has put together a celebration of Dia de Los Muertos throughout SPA. Dia de Los Muertos (otherwise known as the Day of the Dead) is a Mexican holiday celebrated on both November first and second. The purpose of the holiday is to honor loved ones who have passed away and celebrate the lives they lived. To celebrate in the confines of school, the affinity group finds materials including cloth, Calaveras (skulls), fruit, pan de Muerto (bread of the dead), and pictures of their loved ones that have passed away to create an extravagant ofrenda to be placed in the upper library area. Through the age of COVID, Latinos Unidos was still able to set up the ofrenda and keep the display beautiful and respectful. Although this year was heavily altered, the affinity group members still believe the event went perfectly and just as planned.
Sophomore Maryeva Gonzalez said, “I think this event raised a lot of awareness for the Day of the Dead, and also gave students more insight to traditions associated with the event and the culture that it represents.”
Hoping to spread as much information about Dia de Muertos, the affinity group created the large ofrenda for students to look at and engage with, and also held a bake sale this past Monday. The bake sale never set up a specific goal, but they did know where they planned to send whatever money they got.
“From the start, we knew that however much money we made, we were going to donate it to the Latino Economic Development Center,” Gonzalez added.
With all of the changes to schedules that have been very evident throughout the age of COVID-19, the celebration of Dia De Muertos brought some sliver of normalcy to students. Junior Mia Hofman said, “Because of COVID, my entire year has been really weird and different. The celebration of Dia de Muertos was nice to see again this year, as it reminded me of the great times I had the past few school years right before the whole world basically fell apart.”
Although SPA has elected to move back into full-time distance learning within the next few weeks, the celebration of Dia de Muertos was very impactful and essential for the students of SPA.
9th grader Sam Zekaib stated, “With the world on hold, it was nice to see the whole school come together.”