Cultural traditions were honored and celebrated Wednesday, Nov. 6 at Yorkville Middle School as the Yorkville Bilingual Parent Advisory Council's (BPAC) held its sixth annual celebration of the Mexican holiday, Dia de los Muertos.
Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, lasts from Oct. 31 until Nov. 2. It is a Mexican holiday that honors and remembers friends and family who have died and allows the living a chance to help them on their spiritual journey.
"We started very small in one of the elementary schools...the second year we came here because it grew so much," BPAC President Jorge Ayala said. Next year, Ayala said, the event will most likely have to move into the YMS gymnasium, due to the ever-increasing size and popularity of the celebration.
In the hallway outside of the school cafeteria, tables displayed altars created by students to honor the passing of famous individuals like Stan Lee, Walt Disney and Robin Williams, while a larger, multi-tiered altar featured pictures and items representing deceased family members.
In the school auditorium, students sang and danced for parents and family members, before all gathering together to watch the LMS Ballet Folklorico troupe perform traditional dances from areas across Mexico.
"It is really amazing in the sense of the response that we have from the entire community," he said. "We have a lot of Hispanic parents and a composition of American parents, and the response from both has been so great that that's what makes this event so beautiful."