Boise celebrates Dia de los Muertos with procession, party

kjones@idahostatesman.comNovember 2, 2013 

Boise celebrated Dia de los Muertos with a procession through Downtown and a party at the Idaho State Historical Society.

“I love this,” said Judy Ochoa, director of the museum, her face painted like a grinning skull. “It’s a really wonderful celebration of memory and life and those who have gone before. It’s a way to celebrate their lives.”

Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) has its origins in pre-Hispanic Mexico as a way of honoring those who have passed. The celebration, observed for more than 500 years, traditionally includes sugar skulls, colorful paintings, the Cempasúchitl flower, flavorful dishes and altars to remember loved ones.

“I really love the idea,” said Michelle Estrada. “Connecting with those you have lost in a way that, for me, you couldn’t do any other way.”

The procession, featuring giant wood block-printed banners, began at the Sesqui-Shop. It joined the party at the historical museum, which featured music, fire spinning, arts and crafts, and altars. The celebration was sponsored by the Mexican consulate in Boise, Idaho Historical Museum, Boise City Department of Arts and History, Boise State University and Wingtip Press.

“Boise is starting to give (Dia de los Muertos) its own character, its own personality,” said Diego Simancas, deputy consul of Mexico in Boise.

The museum’s altars are on display through next Saturday. See altars at the Sesqui-Shop as well.

Katherine Jones: 377-6414

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