One of San Antonio's favorite shopping and dining districts is set to honor the traditional Mexican holiday of Día de los Muertos on Wednesday, November 2. With free, family-friendly festivities from 5 to 9 pm, the Pearl district will be aglow and abuzz with community ofrendas, children's activities, live music, and more.
“As one of the largest Hispanic majority cities in the country, San Antonio’s Día de los Muertos celebrations stand out from the rest,” says Pearl CEO Mesha Millsap in a release. “At Pearl, we contribute to these celebrations with our own altars, music and activities, providing a space where our community can celebrate and remember their loved ones in a culturally significant way.”
The event is free and open to the public, kicking off at 5 pm with face painting, stilt walkers from the dance company at the Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, drummers, puppets, Los Olvidados and Las Monas, and live music from Mexican-American folk singer and San Antonio native, Tish Hinojosa.
To help kids celebrate the holiday, the Mexican Consulate will present El Rincon del Alebrije, featuring wooden guitars and calavera banks for kids to paint and take home.
The Pearl will also display several art installations and altars created by local artists and institutions to honor a variety of figures, including a community altar by artist Hector Garza and students from Incarnate Word High School. Dedicated to all women who have lived incredible lives of struggle and resilience, the altar will feature blank LED candles for the community to write names.
According to the release, other altars and installations will include:
- Mexican Cultural Institute Altar: This year the Mexican Cultural Institute will display an altar that honors Mexican singer, songwriter, actor, and film producer Vicente Fernández.
- Catrina Garden & Altar by artist Regina Moy: Moya will showcase four paper mache catrinas, elegantly dressed skeletons that are often associated with the holiday, to display alongside an altar dedicated to San Antonio community activist Emma Tenayuca.
- Tzompantli Wall by MM Creative and Larry Servi: Martha Martinez of MM Creative and Larry Sevin will create a modern interpretation of a tzompantli (skull) wall that was often displayed in several Mesoamerican civilizations.
- Marigold Passage by artists Manola and Maria Ramire: Sisters and artists Manola and Maria Ramirez, part of the all-female collective Lavaca Studios, will create an immersive and interactive experience that is inspired by the belief that marigolds connect this world with the afterlife during Día de los Muertos.
- Spiritlandia Skull: Two monumental skulls painted by local artists from chef Johnny Hernandez’s Spiritlandia Calavera Collection will be on display.
While the official Día de los Muertos celebration will take place on November 2, the altars will be available for viewing from November 1-6, and the skull wall, catrinas, and Spiritlandia skulls will be up through the first week of November.