Cemeteries to reopen for Day of the Dead in Tijuana

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A woman walks past graves as Tzotzil community members commemorate the Day of the Dead at San Sebastian cemetery in San Juan Chamula, Chiapas state, Mexico on November 2, 2019. – Chamula is a Tzotzil-speaking Mayan village where Catholicism and the ancient Mayan religion are in a unique syncretism. During the “Feast of All Saints” the Chamulas invite the dead to celebrate (November 1), and on the following day to return them “to the place of burning bones” or “K’atin Bak”, the place of souls (November 2). (Photo by AGUSTIN PAULLIER / AFP) (Photo by AGUSTIN PAULLIER/AFP via Getty Images)

TIJUANA (Border Report) — Most cemeteries in Tijuana have been closed since the pandemic began, but now there’s word they will reopen for Day of the Dead celebrations, scheduled for Nov. 1-2.

“We’re ready to open,” said Enrique Bautista Corona, head of Tijuana’s Public Services. “People have to realize there will be limited space and we will follow every directive from the Secretary of Health in Baja California.”

Dia de los Muertos, or Day of the Dead, is a traditional holiday involving families and friends who gather at grave sites to pray for loved ones who have died and to support their spiritual journey.

View of Cempasuchil -Mexican marigold (Tagetes erecta)- at a cultivation field on a chinampa (floating gardens) in Xochimilco, Mexico City, on October 13, 2020, amid the COVID-19 novel coronavirus pandemic. – The Cempasuchil flowers are widely used in Mexico within the Day of the Dead celebrations, to make paths of petals to guide souls to altars set up for them to enjoy the pleasures they had in life. (Photo by PEDRO PARDO/AFP via Getty Images)

According to Bautista, it’s looking like all 13 municipal cemeteries in Tijuana will reopen by next month.

“Beaches, parks and other places have reopened, so this is very likely,” Bautista said.

He said over the last six months, they’ve been cleaning and maintaining all the city-operated graveyards.

“We will only allow for 50% capacity especially in the most visited facilities,” he added.

Bautista is also reminding people facemasks will be mandatory and people walking into the cemeteries will have to undergo a temperature reading with hand sanitizer being handed out.

“We’re asking families to limit the number of visitors, no children and to keep visits short so others can come in,” Bautista said. “People are also encouraged to visit on multiple days, but with short stays.”

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