OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR)- Hundreds turned out to celebrate the Day of the Dead festival in the Plaza District on Sunday.
“It’s a celebration of life, not of death. It’s celebrating people’s loved ones having a happy afterlife. Doing the things in death that they loved to do in life,” said Shelly States, Day of the Dead Festival organizer.
Attendees from all backgrounds, even furry ones, stopped by to check out the costumes, floats, decorations, and items for sale during the event.
All members of the family got involved, trying their hand at coloring holiday-inspired drawings. And if their parents let them, getting their faces painted to look like skeletons.
“We’ve just always loved how the makeup is done, the colors. So, it’s just been very intrigued. We thought it would be fun to dress up today,” said Kristi Smith-Kenney, who lives nearby.
But it’s not just about sporting bright colors and costumes. The Mexican holiday is meant to bring back the spirits of those who have passed on, in celebration of seeing your loved ones again.
“I would give anything to have my family members who have passed away to come back and visit me again and that’s basically was Día de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is,” States said.
Organizers hope the event is a way to understand the deeper meaning of this part of Mexican culture.
“Rich and poor. Young and old. All of us will die one day. But what we’re celebrating is the life that we lived and the happy afterlife that we’re gonna live afterwards,” States said.
A portion of the festival proceeds were donated to the Shannon Calderon Primeau Memorial Scholarship Fund.