West Texas A&M University

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Dia de los Muertos

Dia de los Muertos – A Celebration of Life

dia de los muertosEach fall, the WTAMU College of Education and Social Sciences hosts a celebration of Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) on the WTAMU campus. WTAMU students and community participants under the outstanding leadership of our faculty and staff design and install memorial displays (ofrendas) celebrating the lives of individuals of personal or professional importance to them. The campus and community actively participate in the week-long events associated with the celebration. The events have been well attended and very positively received by the community.

Highlights of the 2017 Celebration of Life

  • 110 memorial displays were on display in the Panhandle Plains Historical Museum with increased participation from outside the University community
  • 380 attended the fund-raising Gala in 2 venues
  • 20 public school student groups (550 children) viewed the memorial displays in the Museum and participated in educational and art activities  
  • 30 WTAMU faculty and staff members in the College actively contributed their talent and hard work during the week to make the event a success
  • Grammy-nominated singer Micky Cruz and his Band performed at the Gala to standing ovations
  • The 2017 event generated contributions and underwriting in excess of $40,000 – all proceeds were contributed to scholarships and student program support in the College of Education and Social Sciences

The success of the celebration prompts us to continually expand this interesting and important cultural event.  Dia de los Muertos is a holiday celebrated in Mexican and in most Hispanic cultures and increasingly throughout the southwestern United States. The holiday focuses on gatherings to remember friends and family members who have died. It is celebrated throughout Mexico, where it attains the quality of a national holiday. The celebration takes place on November 1–2. Traditions connected with the holiday include building private memorial displays (ofrendas) honoring the deceased using sugar skulls, marigolds, and the favorite foods and beverages of the departed, together with traditional and contemporary music.  The celebration is a joyous one – we have emphasized that the WTAMU event is A Celebration of Life!

We have developed a high visibility, annual event that showcases the WTAMU College of Education and Social Sciences and our outstanding students while generating funds for scholarships in the college.  All proceeds from the event support scholarships in the college including a newly established scholarship benefiting Latino students.

We are pleased to announce the 2018 WTAMU Dia de los Muertos-Celebration of Life:

September and October 2018

Advance publicity concerning the celebration with emphasis provided to event sponsors.

Tuesday, October 23-Friday, October 26, 2018

Area schools and the community are invited to view the ofrendas with WTAMU students providing a “gallery talk” and interactive art activities for the children attending.

Friday, October 26, 2018 – Gala Fiesta de los Muertos!

Gala Reception (5-7 pm) - Panhandle Plains Historical Museum featuring ofrendas and the music of Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter Micky Cruz and his band. (Cash Bar)

Gala Dinner (7-10 pm) – JBK Legacy Hall featuring dancing to the music of Grammy-nominated singer and songwriter Micky Cruz and his band.

Tickets $75 per person including Gala Reception, Dinner, and Dancing (Cash Bar)

Transportation will be provided between the PPHM and the JBK Legacy Hall.

Grammy nominated artist, Micky Cruz was born in Nicaragua. He was orphaned at the age of two when his family was killed in the Nicaraguan war in the late 1970s. He raised himself on the streets of Central America and Mexico. Micky is a self-taught musician and composer who writes and produces all of his own music. Micky Cruz has performed extensively throughout the southwest and is an award winning New Mexico musician having received the coveted Los 15 Grandes award several times in past years! Micky's music is best described as Cumbia, Salsa, and Reggae with an interesting, refreshing twist where Micky has combined styles together and invented "Cumbegue" music.

We invite you to consider becoming a Celebration and Scholarship Sponsor.

All sponsors will receive emphasis in all promotional materials and publicity including recognition in print materials and in online advertising of the event, invitations, event programs, letters to potential participants and school districts, radio and television public service announcements, and in presentations to community groups.

Please consider sponsoring the event at one of the following levels:

Celebration of Life Underwriter - $10,000

Endowment of Named Scholarship in Education or the Social Sciences – particulars of scholarship eligibility and awards to be determined by underwriter and WTAMU

Includes prominent recognition as major event underwriter and continued recognition through annual endowed scholarship awards, a Private Luncheon for 8 in the PPHM with a private gallery walk of the ofrendas; 2 Gala Tables of 8 guests each

Celebration of Life Patron - $5,000

Includes 2 Gala Tables of 8 guests each

Celebration of Life Sponsor - $2,500

Includes 1 Gala Table of 8

Gala Table Sponsor (Table of 8) - $1,000

For more information or to discuss how you can become an event sponsor, please contact:

Dr. Eddie Henderson, Dean of the College of Education and Social Sciences
806-651-2603 or ehenderson@wtamu.edu

Ms. Jaclyn Inkhamheng, Development Officer
806-651-2689 or jinkhamheng@wtamu.edu

THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION AND SUPPORT OF WTAMU!