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Experience a Traditional Day of the Dead in Rural Mexico!

Day of the Dead

By Shannon Goldberg

Rural Education Institute of Mexico

Traditional Day of the Dead celebrations are particularly strong in the rural areas of San Miguel de Allende. If you wish to be a part of a real Mexican fiesta, then you are invited to celebrate a truly Mexican Day of the Dead with The Rural Education Insitute of Mexico. There will be delicious homemade food, beautiful altars, a photo exhibition created by the youth of La Palma, and exciting activities for children. Please join us.

Day of the Dead Celebration
Sat, Nov 1, 5-7pm
The Community Centre in La Palma
Tickets are 80 pesos (available at the door)
If you would like to be a part of a carpool to La Palma, please meet in front of St. Paul’s Church on Calle Cardo at 6pm

The city of San Miguel de Allende will soon be filled with altars built to honor loved ones who have passed on. These altars are constructed using many of the things that the loved ones enjoyed in life, be it food, music, or tequila! The altars can also be surrounded with pictures of family, candles, incense, sugar skulls, and beautiful marigolds known as cempasúchitl. What makes this time of year so beautiful is not only the pleasing visuals that the altars bring to the city, but the idea that your loved one is never far away. Creating an altar gives those left behind a chance to reconnect and remember all of the happy and hilarious moments that were once shared.

The Day of the Dead celebration, which can be traced back to the time of the Aztecs, is split over two days, November 1st and 2nd. This National holiday, which is the largest and most celebrated across Mexico, is separated into two days to first honor the young ones who have passed on during Día de los Inocentes on November 1 and continues on November 2 to remember the adults during Día de Muertos. Families celebrate their loved ones on these days by creating altars, bring ofrendas or offerings to the grave site, and holding vigils full of candles, photos and music.

As Mexico has become the second largest economy in Latin America, there remains a stark inequality in the country’s education system— rural Mexico’s children simply do not have the same opportunities as their urban counterparts. The problem is partly financial (there are few high schools in the campo, and the government does not provide transportation for rural children to attend urban schools), and partly cultural (in rural areas, literacy is low and education is not always a priority). The Rural Education Institute of Mexico exists to help fill this gap and to give rural children the incentive and means to go on to high school and beyond.

Our skilled volunteers travel and work in rural community centers, providing programs that introduce children to a world outside the campo. We build libraries and help children improve their reading. Children learn art, drama and English, among other subjects, and are taught to use computers that we supply. We also provide opportunities to children so they can meet the costs of going to high school— about US$300 per student per year—by awarding scholarships.

For more information about the Rural Education Institute of Mexico, please visit our website at or call us at 415 124 1357.


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