Best I can tell from 11 minutes of Googling, Día de Muertos (which spell-check wants to make into Metros) originated with an Aztec/Meso-American festivity that has merged somewhat with the Christian All Saints and All Souls holy days that have been around since 609 CE.
November 1st is Día de Innocentes or Día de Angelitos, to remember and honor those who died unmarried before age 18. Tomorrow is Día de Muertos to honor and remember adults who have died.
November 1st is also All Saints Day, honoring all (billions?) who are in Heaven — as if they need our honor. Tomorrow is All Souls Day, honoring all who have died but haven’t yet made it to Heaven. We pray for their advancement.
When I was a kid in Catholic school, All Saints Day was a day off, though we had to attend mass in the morning — mass wasn’t a 24/7 deal in those days — so a wash. All Souls Day was a school day.
Dia de Los Muertos is an ancient tradition rooted in Mexico. It celebrates life and honors those who have passed on. Our particular celebration draws its influences from Jose Guadalupe Posada’s early 1900’s portrayal of personalities and professions as skeletons or Calaveras. Posada depicted rich and poor alike as skeletons in ordinary and sometimes outrageous but tragic life settings. Printed sheets would circulate during Dia De Los Muertos festivities where he would seize the opportunity for political satire and comedy. The Posada Calavera always seemed to be laughing, frolicking and up to some kind of mischief.
The parade starts 2pm at the Bernalillo Sheriff”s Substation at Centro Familiar and Isleta. Music, altars, food and art vendors to follow the parade at the Westside Community Center 1250 Isleta Blvd SW. Come in your best calavera attire!