By Veronica Vicente |Staff Writer|
Hollywood Forever Cemetery, hosted their 17th annual “Dia de Los Muertos” festival on Oct. 29.
The festivities started at noon and ran until midnight and ticket prices ranged from $10 for children and $20 for adults.
This was a popular event, with thousands of people attending.
The streets were full of vendors selling home cooked foods and sweets, as well as sugar skull masks and accessories.
The crowds were full of people wearing vibrant colors and the traditional sugar skull makeup.
Upon entering the cemetery, the crowds immediately turned their attention to the hundreds of Aztec ritual dancers, who were performing their traditional dance.
Once the show was over, several people made their way to visit the 100 plus handmade alters created, to pay respect for their loved ones.
Each alter was decorated differently, but the one thing that appeared similar were the bright colors and extravagant decorations.
“I enjoy seeing the crowds reaction when they see my alter, their joy and positive feedback makes me proud and I know my ancestors who passed away would appreciate it,” said alter contestant, Mario Dominguez
There were musical performances by Grammy award winning artists.
Four stages were added, that featured traditional performances and music.
Some of the people who took the stage were singer Julieta Venegas, Alejandro and Maria Laura and a tribute for Singer Jenni Rivera.
Lyrics were exchanged in sync, while the crowds sang along with the artists.
Along with the performances, many people made their way to the hundreds of food and alcohol vendors.
The food sold were mainly tacos, and the alcoholic beverages consisted of micheladas, margaritas and beer of different flavors.
“I love that the food sold here is straight from the Los Angeles vendors. It feels good to see the whole community coming together today,” said LA native Michael Sanchez.
As well as having an array of Mexican cuisine, vendors sold their hand crafted jewelry and apparel.
I myself purchased a hand made leather band bracelet with a single stone in the middle for $30.
The event featured an art exhibition inside of the cathedral that highlighted all of the individuals who passed away.
There was a table set up with fabric taking over the whole table, and black ink.
Guests were encouraged to sign their names, draw a picture or leave a message for their ancestors, friends and family.
A huge line was formed for anybody who wanted to get their face painted with the “Dia De los Muertos” themed makeup.
The makeup artists drew their own designs, and charged $25 for half of the face and $40 for the entire face.
There was never a dull moment, as each part of the cemetery offered an interactive experience.
There was a broad variety of activities, sightseeing and performances to be celebrated.
Although this event was hosted at a cemetery, everyone’s spirits appeared to be living to the fullest.