Handmade “Day Of The Dead” skulls sit on display in a local craft shop in Old Town. Image from Wikimedia Commons.

San Diegans have an excuse to wear costumes on Sunday and Monday, as Dia de los Muertos celebrations are scheduled throughout the county.

A three-day Dia de los Muertos celebration continued in Old Town , with a street fair along San Diego Avenue and a display of 50 public altars in Old Town State Historic Park. The event culminates Monday evening with a candlelight procession to the nearby El Campo Santo cemetery.

Escondido’s 20th annual Dia de los Muertos Festival was to kickoff at 6 p.m. on Sunday evening, and will feature elaborately decorated altars, live music, sugar skull decorating and other activities. The festivities will be at the California Center for the Arts, 340 N. Escondido Blvd. Event organizers said those who want to create altars are encouraged to arrive early to pick out a spot.

The traditional Dia de Los Muertos celebration in Sherman Heights will continue Monday, with a Muertos Candlelight Procession starting at 6 p.m. Participants are invited to walk from the community center to Chicano Park in Barrio Logan in remembrance of their deceased loved ones.

A market will be also open for those who want to build their own altars and will feature all the traditional items you need to build your own altar at home. It’s at the Sherman Heights community center, 2258 Island Ave.

The Izcalli Dia de los Muertos celebration was to continue Sunday, until 9 p.m. in the evening. It will feature more than 150 lowrider cars, performances by Grammy-winning Latin band, Quetzal, entertainment from nationally recognized comedy troupe Teatro Izcalli and dance performances from traditional native dancers.

The event will be hosted at the Market Creek Ampitheater, at 310 Euclid Ave. The Centro Cultural de la Raza center in Balboa Park will host two performances of the play “Journey of the Skeletons” that explains the Day of the Dead traditions through an angel who comes back to earth to visit his family.

The first showing is at 7 p.m. on Sunday evening, with a second showing at 8 p.m. Monday, at 2004 Park Blvd. Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is celebrated throughout Mexico and Latin America to recognize and remember those who have passed away. More information on these events is at www.sandiego.org.

— City News Service

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