Grand Island Festival Skull
The Multicultural Day of the Dead Festival 2015

October 24th, 2015

Noon–midnight

Grand Island, NE

Downtown along 3rd St.

The Multicultural Day of the Dead Festival is a free annual event hosted by the Multicultural Coalition of Grand Island.


Started in 2013, the event brings together our diverse community, increases cultural awareness and provides an opportunity for people to learn about the unique and vibrant tradition that is Day of the Dead (Dia de los Muertos). Celebrate with live music, art, races, authentic food and more.

Day of the Dead Race

5k or 1-mile race

Join us for the annual races

5k - $30 | 1 mile - $15
6:45 p.m.

Skeleton Procession to start line

Register Race
Day of the Dead Race

Dead Fiesta Dance

Join us for a post-festival dance

$10 ($5 add-on to 5k race)
8 p.m.–midnight

Liederkranz, 403 W. 1st St.

Register Dance
Day of the Dead Fundraising Table

Entertainment Schedule

  • 12:00pm - Festival Begins
  • 6:30pm - Skeleton Procession (opens the races)
  • 6:45pm - 5k Race
  • 6:50pm - 1 Mile Race
  • 8:00pm - Downtown festivities end
  • 8:00pm-12:00am - Dance (Venue will open at 7:00)

Arrive ready to celebrate! You'll see:

  • Live music and performances
  • Aztec Fire Dancers
  • Ofrenda Art Installation
  • Kid's games and activities
  • La Cantina (beer garden) will be open with tastings throughout the day
  • Food vendors with authentic dishes and flavors
  • Tamales Tamales Tamales!
  • Art and Workshops for young and old!
F.A.Q.

What is Day of the Dead?

Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, is a holiday primarily celebrated in Mexico and Latin American countries on Nov. 1­–2 that is quickly gaining popularity in many other parts of the world, including the U.S. The holiday is an opportunity to reflect and remember loved ones that have passed, but above all, the Day of the Dead is a celebration of life! You can find more about the history of the Day of the Dead Festival at MexicanSugarSkull.com and SpeakingLatino.com.

Is the festival free to attend?

Yes, the main festival is free and open to the community. There will be paid activities during the event, and funds raised from these activities will go to support the Multicultural Coalition.

Who am I helping when I participate in this event?

By participating in this event, you are supporting the Multicultural Coalition, a 501c3 nonprofit organization that serves more than 1,000 people every year with direct services and community-wide programming.

Can I wear a costume?

Yes, please! All guests and participants are highly encouraged to get creative and dress in your Day of the Dead best.

Can I get a shirt if I'm not a runner or volunteer?

Yes, shirts and other goodies will be sold at the festival.

Where can I park?

There are multiple parking lots near the downtown area that will be free and available to the public.

How can I get involved?

We love our volunteers and could not host this event without you! Visit the volunteer section for more information on volunteer opportunities. There are also many opportunities for art makers, food makers and performers. If there is something you want to create that we haven't thought of yet, we would LOVE to talk with you! Contact us.

What is an Ofrenda?

Ofrendas are an essential part of celebrating Dios de los Muertos and are considered temporary works of art. Ofrendas ("offerings" in Spanish) are displays set up to honor the spirits of deceased loved ones who are believed to return on the Day of the Dead.

An ofrenda can honor deceased family members or friends or even a beloved celebrity, group of people, or event from the past, such as a revolution.

Traditionally, ofrendas include candles (to represent each loved one) and water (to quench the thirst of the souls). Flowers are used to adorn the ofrenda and represent the fleeting nature of life. You can personalize your ofrenda with objects and photos belonging to the deceased person or people you are honoring.

We invite you to share your ofrenda in a public exhibit. Contact us to get more information.

What is a skeleton procession and can I be in it?

The skeleton procession is a lot like a parade for the Day of the Dead. The procession leads the runners to the start line. Non-runners are welcome to participate and will be asked to move off of the path before the race begins. If you have a group that is interested in participating in the Skeleton Procession, contact us.

How old must I be to race?

Any and all ages are welcome to participate in the races.

Are the races timed?

The 5k race is timed; however, this does not mean that you have to run. Fun-runners and walkers are more than welcome!

Do I have to register for the races online?

You can register both online and offline. Visit the registration page to register online, or fill out the downloadable registration forms that you can mail or bring to the Multicultural Coalition office (English | Español).

Can I register on race day?

Race registration will be open until 5 p.m. Oct. 24.

Are baby strollers allowed?

Baby strollers are permitted. We ask that you please be considerate and line up toward the back.

When and where is packet pickup?

Packet pickup will be at 224 W. 3rd St. Oct. 23, 3:30-6:30 p.m. and Oct. 24, 12-5 p.m.

Can a friend or family member pick up my packet?

Yes.

I registered and now I won't be able to participate, can I still pick up my packet?

Yes, stop by and collect your bib and shirt.