While Halloween is prime time for ghosts, ghouls, zombies, and all the creepiness associated with death, the Mexican holiday Día de los Muertos (celebrated worldwide) is a festival to honor and remember loved ones who've died. Altars or ofrendas are built with heaps of flowers, candles, sugar skulls, food, and artwork, and spirits come from the other side to check in on the (living) people they've missed the most. At the following events (which are also on our Día de los Muertos calendar), you'll have a chance to celebrate with dance performances, live music, art, and a wide variety of food.
Día de los Muertos Community Night Out
Celebrate Día de los Muertos by checking out a tapete (sand painting) installation inspired by Oaxaca traditions. Also see a dance performance, enjoy art activities, listen to music, and more.
Seattle Art Museum
Día de los Muertos Celebration
At this Día de los Muertos celebration, guests can eat smoked chicken, pork belly, and seasonal vegetable tamales with fresh salsas and escabeche from the Tamale Guy (they suggest lining up early to get the goods). There will also be sugar skull face painting and seasonal treats like Pan de Muerto, Pumpkin Spice Conchas, decorated cupCubes, and Chai Pumpkin Tres Leches Cake.
Cubes Baking Co.
Día de los Muertos Pop-Up Mercado
Pick up some Día de los Muertos goods from local artists at Colectiva Noroeste's second annual Día de los Muertos pop-up market. Find food, art, jewelry, calaveras, and apparel, plus live entertainment and face painting.
Plaza Roberto Maestas
Halloween Party/Día de los Muertos Kick Off
Get your Halloween and Día de los Muertos thrills all in one place at this rooftop party (with heaters) featuring a live set by DJ Omarte Grandioso, free face painting, a costume contest, Patron and Del Maguey cocktail specials.
Mezcaleria Oaxaca Capitol Hill
Sugar Skull Class
Learn how to make traditional calaveras (sugar skulls that are placed on altars to honor loved ones) in honor of Día de los Muertos. Students will mold sugar into skulls using sugar paste, colorful royal icing, flowers, and embellishments, and they'll also get a chance to learn about the folk art tradition from books and videos.
Día De Los Muertos Festival
Celebrate Día De Los Muertos by decorating a traditional sugar skull, watching printmaking, tasting Pan de Muertos ("Sweet Bread of the Dead"), and learning about the Mexican holiday.
Seattle Center Armory
BadWill Market: Halloween / Day of the Dead Edition
BadWill Market's Halloween/Day of the Dead edition will feature vintage costumes and clothing, jewelry, home goods, house plants, tarot readings, and more. If you're feeling daring, there will also be flash tattoos.
The Rhino Room
The Villalobos Brothers Day of The Dead Party
Celebrate the Day of the Dead with contemporary Mexican ensemble the Villalobos Brothers, who blend rich Mexican folk music with mesmerizing jazz and classical harmonies.
The Royal Room
Día de los Muertos at Columbia Tower
Michael Shrieve, best known for his drumming in Santana, will give a performance at this Día de los Muertos celebration, followed by violinist Geoffrey Castle. There will also be a silent auction, face painting, a tasting from Sparkle Donkey Tequila, and more. A portion of proceeds will help fund a film project in El Salvador.
Columbia City Tower Club
Special Halloween Tour
Explore the seamy side of the Frye's collection, including "occult, mad scientists, vampires, and things that go bump in the night" in Mike Kelley: Day is Done and the work of the Munich Secessionists in the regular collection. Plus, discover Manuel Álvarez Bravo's photographs of the Day of the Dead.
Frye Art Museum
Día de los Muertos at Casco Antiguo
Proceeds from this Día de los Muertos celebration will benefit Urban Artworks' youth programming for at-risk and adjudicated youth. Eat food, drink margaritas, and bid in a silent auction to win pieces by local artists, including Jesse Brown, John Sarkis, Duffy, Angelina Villalobos, Zoe Watson, Ezra Dickinson, and many others.
Día de los Muertos at Mission Cantina
This Día de los Muertos celebration promises a whole 10 hours of festivities. See traditional altars, sip special drinks, feast on a pig roast, and dance to a live mariachi band.
Free First Thursday: Día de los Muertos
In honor of Día de los Muertos, the Ballard Civic Orchestra, the Singing in the Rain Family Choir, and Plymouth Congregational Church will join musical forces in a concert featuring Jose Rubio, Sari Breznau, and Wanda Griffiths, conducted by Paula Nava Madrigal. Guests can also enjoy storytelling with children’s author Nora Girón-Dolce and art-making with a "Michoacán Master Craftsman."
Museum of History and Industry
Tequila Exotico Día de los Muertos Party
Mama's Cantina will celebrate with Tequila Exotico drink specials, face painting, and a taco buffet.
13th Annual Día de los Muertos Exhibit
El Centro de la Raza's annual ofrenda (remembrance altar) exhibit has a special intention this year: "We want to honor all of those who fought to build bridges not walls (Construyendo puentes no paredes!), arm in arm together, fighting against the injustices in our communities and remember those who have died fighting for freedom and justice." The opening night celebration will feature a free chicken mole dinner, a raffle, children's activities, and live entertainment from Duo Finelli, Los Rebeldes de la Cueca, Salsa n Seattle, Folklore Mexicano Tonantzin, Chief Sealth International High School's Folklorico and Quinceanera Club, and Danza Azteca. There will also be a poetry event on November 9 featuring the Poetry on Buses Roadshow, Claudia Castro Luna, and Hilary Field.
El Centro de la Raza
Burien Day of the Dead Celebration
Celebrate Día de los Muertos in every way possible at this community affair. Place momentos of loved ones on traditional altars, see a Frida Khalo art installation by Amaranta Sandy, get your face painted by Burien Arts, and hear storytelling from Nora Girón-Dolce. You'll also find a bingo room, arts & crafts, "frames in the style of Mexican Nichos," and skeletons.
Burien Community Center
Seattle Obscura Society: Día de los Muertos—Living with the Dead
Check out a traditional community altar built by poet Raúl Sánchez and learn about "the levels of symbolism embedded within the structure and cosmology" of the shrines. You can also decorate a sugar skull to use as a ritual offering, explore the food, gastronomy, and iconography associated with Día de los Muertos, and learn about the holiday's history and evolution.
Phinney Neighborhood Association
Claudia Castro Luna's Book Launch & Day of the Dead Celebration
Join Gabriella Gutiérrez y Muhs and poet Claudia Castro Luna for a reading of Luna's new collection of poems Killing Marías and a Day of the Dead celebration.
Day of the Dead Festival
This free Día de los Muertos celebration will begin with a community procession of a traditional alter, where community members can add pictures, momentos, or other small items to honor deceased loved ones. Afterward, dance to live music, decorate sugar skulls, get your face painted, eat food, and sip Mexican hot chocolate.
Phinney Neighborhood Association
13th Annual Día de los Muertos Community Festival
See more than 30 community altars, a colorful tapete (sand painting), traditional Mexican food, Aztec dancing, a mariachi band, sugar skull-making, and more at this Día de los Muertos celebration.
Tacoma Art Museum
Entre Hermanos Gala
This annual gala celebrates the Day of the Dead with food, unlimited drinks, and an auction. Proceeds benefit Entre Hermanos, an organization that supports the health and well-being of the Latino LGBTQ community through disease prevention, education, support services, advocacy and community building.