SPRINGDALE, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) —On November 1-2, people from around the world are joining in on Day of the Dead celebrations, including one in Downtown Springdale.

At the Shiloh Square, community members built an ofrenda or altar, where anyone can add their offerings. Along with the celebration hosted by the Downtown Springdale Alliance and the Latin Arts Organization of Arkansas, many local families are celebrating Día de los Muertos at home.

One of those families is Silvia Merino’s, a member of the Latin Arts Organization of Arkansas. Merino said her family starts building their ofrenda at the same time her neighbors decorate for Halloween.

Merino said the altars have multiple layers, complete with decorations, water, salt, and pictures of loved ones that have passed. She said the photos allow family members and friends they’ve lost to cross over and visit them.

“We believe that people die when you forget about them,” said Merino.

To prepare for her late father to visit, Merino is cooking his favorite meal, and keeping a box of cigarettes and whiskey for him at the ready.

Merino said the ofrendas give kids another reason to celebrate their culture.

“Just showing who we are. We are showing our roots, keeping our kids involved in all of these activities is very important for them to have an identity because they might look like us, but they might not be feeling like us,” said Merino.

On Saturday at Shiloh Square, the Day of the Dead celebration will be filled with traditional dance and music, crafts, face painting, and vendors.