Día De Los Muertos and Mexamericon 2023

The Emma S. Barrientos Mexican American Cultural Center (ESB-MACC) presents the 16th annual celebration of Día de los Muertos, Day of the Dead. This beloved tradition brings family and community together to celebrate the lives of our ancestors, family, friends, and public figures. The large-scale festival is on Saturday, November 4 at the Pan American Recreation Center in East Austin. The ESB-MACC, in collaborate with Oakwood Cemetery, the Long Center, and Parks and Recreation facilities, will also offer pop-up events before and after the festival. The events are free and open to the public. 

Alma y Corazon Ceremony 

The Alma y Corazon Ceremony takes place on Día de los Muertos, the day that our loved ones can return, Thursday, November 2 from 5:30 p.m. to 8 p.m. at the Oakwood Cemetery, 1601 Navasota St. The altar presentation and ceremony features Mariana Nuño Ruiz McEnroe, author of Dining with the Dead, who will give a talk on the rich culinary traditions in Mexico that are associated with Día de lo Muertos. Javier Jara will play guitar and guests can enjoy complimentary hot chocolate and tamales while they come together to share their stories. All are invited to pay respect to the individuals buried in Oakwood Cemetery to view the collective ofrenda (altar) by artist Alonso Estrada, made specifically for this site in loving memory of those who have passed. Bring non-perishable objects (notes, flowers, copies of photographs) to add to the ofrenda. A digital exhibit on Día de los Muertos will also include articles, photos and videos that give local history and cultural context to this celebration. Anyone who has family ties to Oakwood Cemetery and would like to decorate a monument is encouraged to contact Jennifer Chenoweth at Jennifer.Chenoweth@austintexas.gov.

5:30 p.m. Viewing of Chapel ofrenda created by artist Alonso Estrada and music by Javier Jara
6:15 p.m. Mariana Nuño-Ruiz McEnroe speaks about her book “Dining with the Dead” and the history of Día de los Muertos
6:45 p.m. Walking tour to the Oakwood Cemetery gates at Comal Street
7 p.m. Meet at Oakwood Cemetery Annex gates to walk with musician Jorge Tamayo and friends to the Herrera and Limon lots in Section C of the Cemetery, to view family ofrenda and welcome the ancestors

Day of the Dead Festival and Mexamericon Comic Con

The ESB-MACC’s 16th annual Day of the Dead festival is pairing up again with MexAmericon. This celebration of life takes place on Saturday, November 4 from 1 p.m. to 9 p.m. at the Pan American Recreation Center, 2100 E 3rd St., an iconic outdoor hillside in East Austin that is ideal for this family-friendly event. Guests can enjoy hands-on children’s activities, art activations, vendors, food trucks, and a collective community altar. 

From 1 p.m. to 3 p.m., MexAmeriCon will present their afternoon showcase of Mexican American and Latinx artists who work through the medium of comic books, graphic novels, zines and pop art. The “Artist Alley” under the big outdoor MexAmeriCon tent offers loteria (bingo), an artisan market, and autograph signings. Now in its tth year, MexAmeriCon is a Comic Con like no other, and it’s the only Latine-focused comic con in Central Texas. Expect to be immersed in culture- focused graphic novels and an innovative experience that creates a positive and inclusive environment for both artists and attendees to unite and share.

At 3 p.m., get ready to welcome the memories of our loved ones with Day of the Dead altars, art installations, and activities that foster an appreciation for the sweetness and fragility of life. Discover the MACC’s large-scale interactive sculptures by Las Piñatas ATX, and live screen printing with Old School Nation. The MACC’s education department offers free sugar skull decorating and face painting. The collective outdoor ofrenda (altar) will be a gathering of memories that grows larger throughout the evening as guests contribute names and notes to it. Performances by mariachi metal group Tequila Rock Revolution, Tejano Music Awards Best New Female Artist Monica Saldivar, and Austin’s Latin-Psych Fusion band Los Alcos round out the evening.

The MexAmeriCon and Day of the Dead events occur outdoors and under partial tent cover on the Pan Am grassy “Hillside”. The events are free and open to all ages with no RSVP required. Guests may bring chairs and water. This is an alcohol-free family event. Parking and shuttle information will be updated on social media @ESBMACC and AustinTexas.gov/DayoftheDead.

This mega-event features:

– Graphic Artists, Interactive Board Games, Artist and Vendor Markets by Mexamericon
– Sugar Skull Decorating by MACC Education Department
– Large-Scale Art Installations by Las Pinatas ATX 
– Screen Printing by Old School Nation
– Loteria (live bingo game) by MexAmeriCon
– Facepainting by Mexamericon 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. and ESB-MACC Education 3 p.m. to 8 p.m.
– The list of activities will grow, stay tuned on social media for more!

Ways the public can participate:

  • Attend the festival on November 4 and invite your friends! Follow @ESBMACC!
  • To be a vendor or volunteer, please fill out this form!
  • Bring your photographs and flowers to add to one of the community altars. The public can add to the altars on November 2 at Oakwood Cemetery or November 4 at Pan American Recreation Center. No perishables or valuables please! 
  • Wear your MexAmeriCon cosplay to participate in a costume contest!
  • Does your workplace or school want to build an ofrenda? Email Olivia Tamzarian at Olivia.Tamzarian@austintexas.gov.

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