What is Cinco de Mayo?

Cinco De Mayo (5th of May)

la batalla

According to Wikipedia:

Cinco de Mayo (Spanish for “fifth of May”) is a celebration held on May 5. It is celebrated in the United States[1] It is also celebrated in parts of Mexico, primarily in the state of Puebla,[note 1][2][3][4] where the holiday is called El Día de la Batalla de Puebla (English: The Day of the Battle of Puebla).[5][6][7]

It “is a much bigger holiday in the United States” than Mexico, especially in the western and southwestern states.[8] It originated with Mexican-American communities in the American West as a way to commemorate the cause of freedom and democracy during the first years of the American Civil War,[9][10] and today the date is observed in the United States as a celebration of Mexican heritage and pride.[11] In the state of Puebla, the date is observed to commemorate the Mexican army‘s unlikely victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862, under the leadership of General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguín.[3][12] Cinco de Mayo is not Mexico’s Independence Day—the most important national patriotic holiday in Mexico—which is celebrated on September 16.[3][13]

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Why do we celebrate?

As of the 2012 census, Hispanics make up 17% of Americans and 65% of Hispanics are of Mexican descent.  Here in San Antonio, the population is over 63% Hispanic so you can bet we take any excuse to celebrate Mexican heritage very seriously.  Since we don’t really need an excuse to celebrate springtime, let’s get to the important stuff like HOW to celebrate!

[Tweet “In San Antonio, Hispanics are the majority. Grito!”]

How do we celebrate Cinco de Mayo?

Since Cinco de Mayo falls on a Monday, most people are planning to celebrate over the weekend prior.  That’s when you’ll find most bars and Mexican restaurants running their promotions.  For history buffs, we recommend watching Cinco de Mayo: La Batalla on Netflix or some other streaming service.

If you’re planning a Cinco de Mayo celebration at home or with friends, check out our Cinco de Mayo Pinterest board for ideas on drinks, foods and decorations.

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