Dia de Los Muertos is a day for Mexicans and Chicanos everywhere to honor and welcome back the dead, connecting the past with the present in a unique cultural tradition that honors rather than fears mortality. For over two decades, Hollywood Forever Cemetery has hosted California’s largest Day of the Dead commemoration. This year is the 24th year of Hollywood Forever’s celebration, one that gives the largest Mexican population outside of Mexico a place to honor their heritage and loved ones on the last Saturday of October.
Traditionally, altars are created to bring souls of the dead back to Earth for a day, with the light from candles and scent from traditional marigolds guiding them home. Each year, over 100 altars, adorned with photos of the deceased, marigold flowers, and candles, are created by local artisans and residents. Vendors from 18 Los Angeles restaurants, including Holbox Carnitas, El Artista, Tacos Los Cholos, and Boba Time, will bring succulent carnitas, tacos, and cold beverages. Original artworks and arts and crafts stations fill the grounds, as well as cultural performances and dance performances that swirl around the fields. Five stages host popular Mexican musicians, headlined this year by DannyLux and Bomba Estereo. The event culminates with prizes awarded to the best Calaca (skeleton paint) and best altars. Costume prizes are $1000 for first place and $500 for runner-up. There are three altar categories up for grabs: Best Event Themed Altar, Best Traditional Altar, and Best Contemporary Altar. Winning altars are granted $5000 each.
It is also the first year that the event has been split in two; Dia de los Muertos, from 9 am to 3 pm, and Noche de los Muertos, from 5 p.m. to 12 a.m. Perhaps unrelated, but fire marshals had to block the entrances in 2019 due to crowds. Aside from timing differences, the daytime program caters more to children and is almost half the price of the nighttime event. Only in the night, however, will attendees get to see the altars truly glow.
- Years past have attracted crowds as large as 30,000.
- Ticket tiers are as follows: Daytime general admission costs $35. Daytime VIP admission costs $150. Nighttime general admission costs $60. VIP admission costs $250
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What is the closest airport to Hollywood Forever Dia de Los Muertos?
Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) is 13 miles from the cemetery.
Where is the festival held?
The festival is held at Hollywood Forever Cemetery in West Hollywood, Los Angeles.
What kind of bag can I bring in?
There is no stated bag policy for the event. However, chairs are not allowed, nor are outside refreshments.
Which artists are on the Hollywood Forever Dia de Los Muertos lineup?
Dia de los Muertos: DannyLux, Irene Diaz, Grupo Folklorico Cielito Lindo, Inspiraciones De Danza Mexicana, Tecnica Arte Y Folklore, Grupo Folklorico Bailes de Mi Tierra, Grupo Folklorico Princesa Donaji, Tradicion Dance Company, Pasion de Mi Tierra Dance Co., Miroslava Ferra, Rafael Mendoza, Todos los Dolores, Laurie Muñiz
Noche de los Muertos: Bomba Estereo, Bratty, Camila Fernández, Banda Las Angelinas.