Mayor Kim Janey and Alberto Fierro, Consul General of Mexico in Boston, on October 13 announced an online citywide photo collection process of departed loved ones in preparation for Boston’s fourth annual Día de Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration. This year’s in-person celebration will again take place in Copley Square. The altar will be open for visitors between Sunday, October 31, from 10 a.m. to sunset, and Monday, November 1, from 10 a.m. to sunset.
“This year, we celebrate the Mexican tradition Día de Muertos by honoring the departed in our online citywide photo collection altar or ‘ofrendas’,” said Mayor Janey. “I invite residents to share their photos in this communal celebration to commemorate the loved ones we have lost.”
Día de Muertos is celebrated in traditional Mexican homes where departed family members are remembered by altars lovingly decorated with photographs, papel picado paper decorations, offerings of fruit, favorite food and drink, and candles. Day of the Dead altars or ‘ofrendas’ are set up by family and friends to commemorate the lives of departed loved ones.
“We are pleased to join again with the people of Boston to celebrate one of Mexico’s most cherished traditions that has been observed for centuries, to pay tribute and celebrate the lives of our departed loved ones,” said Consul General Fierro.
The traditional celebration also includes masses of fragrant orange cempasúchil marigolds, also called the flor de muertos (flower of the dead) in Mexico, and used annually in the Day of the Dead. The marigolds, with their bright orange color and scent, are thought to guide the spirits home. For the fourth year in a row, Boston’s citywide altar will contain hundreds of pots of marigolds, grown from seed by the Boston Parks Department gardeners.
Submissions received by 5 p.m. on Wednesday, October 27, will be displayed as part of the in-person and virtual altar (viewable at boston.gov/diademuertos).