Santa Maria families observing Día de los Muertos are invited to celebrate the lives of their loved ones with a community event at the Veterans Memorial Community Center on Oct. 24.

From noon to 4 p.m., families can enjoy live entertainment, activities for kids, and food and crafts from local vendors at the community center. Residents are invited to create an ofrenda, or altar, honoring a loved one who has died that will be included in a community display at Veterans Memorial Community Park. 

"The big, beautiful offerings are the centerpieces of the celebration and participants are encouraged to be as creative as possible," city spokesman Mark van de Kamp said.

The holiday, which originated in Mexico, is traditionally celebrated Nov. 1 and 2.

Those wishing to contribute an altar can register online at www.santamariaatplay.org or by visiting the Santa Maria Recreation and Parks Department office at 615 S. McClelland St.

Registration is due by Friday.

Questions may be directed to the Recreation and Parks Department at 805-925-0951, ext. 2260.

The Veterans Memorial Community Center is located at 313 W. Tunnell St.

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