DAY OF THE DEAD: Lively festival draws a crowd to Meridian

photos by Thomas Howard / The Meridian Star

Ezequiel Colin dishes up tacos for visitors Saturday at the first Day of the Dead festival in downtown Meridian.

Hundreds of Meridian residents came together Saturday as the city hosted its first Dia de Los Muertos Celebration.

Dia de Los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is an annual Mexican celebration to honor lost loved ones.

DAY OF THE DEAD: Lively festival draws a crowd to Meridian

Janis Baehr shows off her festive skull outfit at the Day of the Dead festival.

DAY OF THE DEAD: Lively festival draws a crowd to Meridian

New Orleans' Marty Peters and the Party Meters perform at the Day of the Dead celebration.

DAY OF THE DEAD: Lively festival draws a crowd to Meridian

Visitors to the Day of the Dead festival in Meridian Saturday examine the altars spread throughout Dumont Plaza. The altars are a traditional part of Day of the Dead celebrations and are made to honor deceased family and friends.

DAY OF THE DEAD: Lively festival draws a crowd to Meridian

Aurora Walton examines the festive skulls decorating Dumont Plaza Saturday.

 

Day of the Dead featured many of the traditional decorations and activities seen at Day of the Dead celebrations throughout the world, including brightly-painted skulls, vibrant flowers and plenty of good food.

Organizer Linda Candelo said she wanted to use the event to help Meridian grow and be more inclusive, and Saturday’s celebration lived up to that promise. 

Visitors to Dumont Plaza Saturday had no shortage of sights, sounds and smells to take in as the plaza was filled with live music, tacos and tamales, face painting and more. The event also featured several altars, a staple of Day of the Dead celebrations, which are made to remember and honor deceased family and friends.

Mayor Jimmie Smith, who attended the event, said he was glad to see so many residents take part in the festivities.

Candelo said she hopes to make Dia de Los Muertos an annual event in the City of Meridian, making the Mexican holiday a day the community can come together, celebrate and remember.

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