In countries like the Unites States and Canada, people celebrate Halloween. The 1st November we celebrate “All Saints” and the 2nd of November we celebrate those who has gone before us: “the dead”.
In Haiti unlike the United States where graveyards are privately owned and maintained, graveyards in Haiti are often publicly owned or managed by local churches. It is up to the families of the deceased and other community members to maintain the graves. The Day of the Dead is a time of celebration and remembrance of loved ones who have passed away, much like Memorial Day in the United States. During the days of the dead, the family often takes the opportunity to visit the graveside and pull weeds, clean any debris and decorate the graves of loved ones. Often candles, flowers are placed on the grave and the family visits, sings and say prayers. Those who practice Vodou often go to the cemetery, ” Jete dlo, bale, wouze”, they give food to the “Lwas”, we often see “Bann rara’ on the street, singing songs related to the Vodou in this occasion. In many villages and the capital, people drink alcoholic beverages, eat hot peppers and do offering to their “Lwas”. The tradition has been adapted, now many bands perform at different places, people dress up for the ball, singing songs not related to the celebration of the dead. This October 31 at the Marriot Hotel, Djakout #1 and Boukman Eksperyans was performing to satisfy the public who came to celebrate.
See more pictures below