Day of the Dead 2018

San Francisco Day of the Dead 2018

In San Francisco, Day of the Dead has been celebrated in the Mission district since the early 70’s. The Marigold Project was created in 1990 for participants to build altars, leave offerings, heal, and celebrate the lives of our ancestors, in Garfield Park. It serves as a community graveyard for the night with expressions of art, music, live performances, and a walking procession through San Franciscos historical Mission District.

Día de los Muertos is a traditional MesoAmerican holiday dedicated to the ancestors; it honors both death and the cycle of life. In Mexico, neighbors gather in local cemeteries to share food, music, and fun with their extended community, both living and departed. The celebration acknowledges that we still have a relationship with our ancestors and loved ones that have passed away.


The Altars in Garfield Park

26th and Harrison

7:00 pm

Bring flowers, candles and mementos of loved ones of all ages. 

This is an unique and transformative community event and the entire community is grateful for your collaboration, creativity, and willingness to help us maintain one of the best celebrations in San Francisco. This is an alcohol free event.


The Procession

22nd and Bryant

7:00 pm

Bring flowers, candles and mementos of loved ones of all ages


Altar Builders

We invite you to join us in building a main community altar or build your own personal altar on November 2nd.

 We encourage traditional, contemporary and experimental altars that address grief and loss on a social, spiritual and personal level. We love to support altar’s that create community participation and are engaging. 

Contact us if you’d like to participate in a group altar or build an individual altar, email us at 



This is a community based event. We rely on the help of our community to keep this a free event. 

As a volunteer of our grassroots organization we welcome help in the form of fundraising, grant writting, administration, and planning. Please contact us at to let us know what skills you’d  like to share.



Each year, the Marigold Project must raise the funds for the Festival of Altars at Garfield. The tradition of an outdoor altar exhibit has served as a unique, spiritual community space- encouraging and enabling thousands of moments of healing, connection and celebration for over three decades.

We are asking our Day of the Dead community to stand together to ensure this event remains a FREE community event, with no visible corporate sponsors. If you have been touched by Day of the Dead and would like to see it continue and grow, please consider donating a gift. Any amount is welcomed and greatly appretiated. All donations will go towards park permits, altar materials, portapotties, a cleaning crew, artist stipends, education, and admin costs.


We need your help, please click here to make a donation on GoFundMe!

KQED Arts Video, enjoy!

Dia11 (5)

Personal Altar Guidelines

Thanks for participating in this years event. This is a unique and transformative community event and the entire community is grateful for your collaboration, creativity, and love for making it a night to remember. 

• INFORMATION TABLE will be next to the clubhouse. PLEASE CHECKIN and help us build an amazing event.

• NO ALCOHOL is not allowed during the event. We are making an effort to cut down police intervention during the event.  Please remind others than this is an alcohol-free event and gently invite them to drink outside the park.

• NO AMPLIFIED SOUND is allowed. 

• ELECTRICITY is not supplied. If you need electricity you will need to bring a silent generator. Please notify us in advance, if you will be bringing a generator.

• FIRE is only allowed in candles that are inside of glass or tin recipients. 

• WATER must be present at each altar. A minimum of one gallon is required just in case some thing catches fire.

• NO DIGGING is allowed in the soil by using rebar and no more than 6 inches deep due the sprinkler system.  Please notify us if you are planning to dig.

• PLAYGROUND RULES:  Only children and adults supervising children are allowed into the playground area. No altars or candles in the Playground.

SET UP: 12 pm – 4 pm.  Please make sure that your altar is set by 4 pm.

• CLEAN UP begins promptly at 11 pm. Please remove your altars and ofrendas that night. The Marigold Project is not responsible for anything left at the park after midnight.  There will be waste, recycling and compostable dumpsters on Harrison.

• BE AWARE, we will get fined for anything left on the street or park and if waste is not properly classified. Please bring your own garbage bags. We will also have garbage bags available at the Marigold Project table. We encourage you to recycle usable arts materials and candles at SCRAP.

• CONCERNS from the police, rangers, or any attendee can be addressed at the Marigold Project information table located outside the Clubhouse.

We are looking forward to celebrating and creating Dia de los Muertos with all of you!


The Marigold Project

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