Ofrenda Guidelines

Día de los Muertos/Day of the Dead will be held on November 3 and 4, 2017 at the Greensboro Public Library (Central Library) located on 219 N Church Street. Greensboro, NC in the Nussbaum room.

Ofrendas will be on display at both events. From time to time, Casa Azul invites members of the community to submit proposals for building ofrendas. All proposals must be submitted on time and some will be selected for display.

In the Mexican tradition, ofrendas are built with three levels to represent the sky, earth, and the afterworld. The four main elements (air, water, fire and earth) should be represented on the ofrenda with different materials such as candles, papel picado, flowers and seeds. Although ofrendas typically appear this way, we recommend you use your own interpretation, which means you ofrenda could look different but should contain the core elements of the traditional structure. Above is an example of an ofrenda created by Casa Azul.


The following are guidelines and necessary information for you and your group to construct the ofrenda.

  1. Ofrenda setup:

On Friday November 3th, you will have 7 hours to build your ofrenda at the Greensboro Public Library. Doors open at 10:00am and we ask you to please finish your set up no later than 5:00pm.

The ofrendas will be open to the public for exhibition Friday, November 3rd from 6:00pm to 9:00pm and Saturday, November 4th from 12:00pm to 3:00pm.

All ofrenda spaces have the same dimensions and will be chosen on a first come, first served basis.

Casa Azul can provide the following to each ofrenda:

  • 2 tables combined for a total of 7’ x 4’ (maximum space)
  • some flowers
  • 2 electric candles,
  • 1 Pan de muerto (bread that is specific to this occasion)
  • Volunteers to assist you with any of your needs.

We suggest bringing cardboard boxes or something similar in order to construct the different levels of the ofrenda, please bring your own materials and tools.


  1. Ofrenda breakdown:

Please make the necessary arrangements to breakdown your ofrenda after the exhibition concludes on Saturday, November 4th from 3:00pm to 4:00pm.

Casa Azul and Greensboro Public Central Library are not responsible for items left after library’s closing at 5:00pm on Saturday, November 4th


  1. Ofrenda design guidelines:

It is important to remember that the tradition of the ofrenda is to honor the loss of one or more loved ones or the loss of a prominent community member and not to transmit political/religious messages or for marketing purposes.

Provide ofrenda information by October 11th: Please send us the title and a brief description about your ofrenda – in English and Spanish if possible – in a Word document that includes the names of the individuals from your group who will participate in the construction of the ofrenda.  This information will be included in the program available to all visitors and will also accompany the ofrenda itself.  If you need the title and description translated make sure that you send this information as soon as possible.


  1. Guidelines due to library policies
  • We are not allowed to use nails on the walls, however, tape is allowed as long as it does not damage the paint.
  • All candles should be electric.
  • No food is allowed inside the exhibition room and hallway. Except for the food used at the ofrenda.


We will have volunteers during exhibition times and the doors will close from Friday 9:00pm to 12:00pm on Saturday, however, Casa Azul and Greensboro Public Central Library are not responsible for objects of value at the ofrendas nor will they be responsible for any left objects after 5:00pm on Saturday, November 4th.


We look forward to reviewing your proposal and will let you know if your proposal has been accepted as an ofrenda for the event by October 15, 2017.

The diverse ofrendas showcased at our two-day Día de los Muertos event mean so much. Please let us know how we can help you or guide you to make this event successful.

Contact Estela Ratliff at info@casaazulgreensboro.org if you have any further questions.


Thank you!

Casa Azul of Greensboro