Murphys Dia de Los Muertos will be back on Saturday, November 6, 2021!  We’ll have traditional artisan vendors, food, drink, and a community altar in the Park and, as always, our businesses will be displaying ofrendas honoring those who we have lost but are with us in spirit. 

Those interested in participating as a vendor may download the vendor form at:
2021 DoD Vendor-Face Painter Application

Watch our home page and this page for more details as the event develops.

The 2020 Murphys Day of the Dead Celebration has been postponed until 2021.  Feel free to contact us at with any questions.  Vendors interested in participating in 2021 should contact Catherine directly. Local businesses will mark the day in 2020 but there will be no public celebration, vendors, street closures, live entertainment, or gatherings in the park. 

We will miss seeing you all and are excited and hopeful to welcome you back in 2021!

Murphys Community Honors the Dead in the Land of the Skulls for
Dia de los Muertos.
Join us on the first Saturday in November!

Murphys merchants and tasting rooms hope to be celebrating the Eleventh Annual Day of the Dead, or Dia de los Muertos, on
Saturday, November 6th, 2021 from 11:00 am-5:00 pm.

Details of the 2021 Celebration will be coming later this year after we confirm that large gatherings will once again be allowed but you can read about some of our event highlights from previous years below!

Participating businesses will be offering authentic cultural art, food, sugar skulls, face painting, and live music, as well as displaying altars celebrating the lives of those who have passed on but are with us in heart and spirit on the Day of the Dead.

We’ll once again include a Catrina and Catrin Dress Contest at 4:30 pm on Saturday afternoon in the Park followed by a brief remembrance.  Mexican hot chocolate and pan de muertos will be available until sold out.

Please sign up in the Park before 3 pm on Saturday to participate in the Catrin & Catrina Contests.  Children are welcome to participate in our contest for younger Catrin & Catrinas at 2 pm in the Park.  No advance registration necessary for the kids but be there 15 minutes early.

The celebration in the Park will include traditional entertainment beginning at noon featuring folklorico dancers, musicians, food and drinks for sale and authentic craft vendors.  Purchases of food & drinks will benefit the Murphys Community Club who are responsible for maintaining and improving our lovely park along the creek.  This year the folklorico dancers will again offer dancing lessons in the Native Sons Hall at 2:30 pm.

Download the schedule: 2019 Day of the Dead Schedule. Download the event map: 2019 Day of the Dead Event Map

This ancient holiday traces its roots back to the indigenous cultures of Mexico, Latin America, and Europe but has become inextricably intertwined with the Catholic observance of All Saints Day and All Souls Day over time.   Although this celebration is associated with the dead, it is traditionally a period full of life, happiness, color, food, family, and fun.  In Mexico, outdoor markets display and sell symbolic items like special bread, pottery, baskets, candles, paper puppets, candy skulls, and flowers.  Skeletons are also an important symbol of this day and are displayed hugging, dancing and laughing in shop windows and on street corners.

Traditional activities are believed to “welcome the souls of the dead.”  The souls are said to return each year to enjoy the pleasures of the life that they once had.  These souls are thought to return as spirits from another world to be with their loved ones for a few brief hours.  A widely held belief is that the souls of children (angelitos) return first so food and gifts appealing to children are set out for them.  The adult dead are said to return a day or two later and their favorite items, as well as elaborate food and drink, are set out for them as well.  It is believed that candlelight, as well as the scent of marigolds and copal incense, will help the ghosts find their way back home.

There will be activities appropriate for children as well as face painters.

The public is welcome to participate in the remembrance of loved ones by contributing items to the altars.  Add to the Community Altar located in the Park or contact the business owner whose altar you would like to contribute to make sure there is an appropriate space for your item.

Additional information on the history, traditions, and beliefs associated with the Day of the Dead can be found on the mexconnect website.

Thank you to our 2019 major sponsors who make this event possible:
Algiers & Main
Dignity Health
Marisolio Tasting Room
Tanner Tasting Room
Bank of Stockton
Calaveras County Arts Council
Calaveras Winegrape Alliance
Jomas Artisan Ice Cream
Murphys Grille
Murphys Historic Hotel
Murphys Pourhouse
Rob’s Place
Sierra Nevada Adventure Company
The Spice Tin

Please thank them when you stop in next time.

Other supporters of this event include:

Aria Bakery
Black Sheep Winery
DEA Bathroom Machineries
Gold Star Plumbing
Gossamer Cellars
Ironstone Vineyards
Lila & Sage
Milliaire Winery
Murphys Treasures
Newsome Harlow Wines
NEXT Upscale Resale
Sabrina Julian Investments
Sierra Hills Market & Natural Food Store
Stevenot Winery
The Garden in Murphys
Villa Vallecito