Altars celebrate Day of the Dead

November 01, 2022

Day of the Dead
From left, Adam Goushaw of Rockford, Michigan; Kimmia Fotovat of Naperville, Illinois; Kennedy Jester of Fort Wayne, Indiana; Ana Boman, Spanish lecturer; Valentina Brooks of Greenfield, Indiana; Meara Finnegan of Blissfield, Michigan; and James Kellerstrass of Berrien Springs, Michigan, president of the Study Abroad Club, stand in front of the Day of the Dead altars at Trine University. (Photos by Stephen Cluckey)
For the second year in a row, students in Trine University’s Spanish minor and students in the Alpha Beta Nu Hispanic Honorary Society collaborated with students in the Study Abroad Club to celebrate the Day of the Dead (Dia de Muertos) on Nov. 1 and 2.

The students created two altars, placed in the Rick L. and Vicki L. James University Center, to honor loved ones who passed away.

The students brought photos and personal mementos to honor their beloved deceased relatives and friends, including pets.

They decorated the altars with images of their home state flowers, marigolds, candles and skulls. The marigolds and candles represent the fragility of life, and the flowers and candles are believed to show the deceased the path to the living world on Nov. 1 and 2.

Altars are very important in the Day of the Dead celebration, since they are where the ofrendas (offerings) are placed to honor the dearly departed.

Day of the DeadStudy Abroad Club students provided paper butterflies and invited Trine students and staff to write the names of their beloved deceased on them. The students hung more than 120 of the paper butterflies on the wall above the altars in the shape of a butterfly.

The second altar was created in honor of Mexican painter Frida Kahlo, one of the most influential female artists of the 20th century. The altar was decorated with some of her pictures, paintings and other items to celebrate her life.

The altars will be on display until Thursday, Nov. 3.

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