Literally meaning “Fifth of May”, this Mexican holiday is naturally celebrated on May fifth. Originally, Cinco de Mayo was meant to celebrate the victory of the Mexican Army over the French in the Battle of Puebla on May 5th, 1862. Often confused with Mexican Independence Day (September 16th for anyone wondering) or even Día de Muertos (October 31st through November 2nd), for the most part Cinco de Mayo has become a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, more so in the US than in Mexico.
Cinco de Mayo celebrations in the United States originated in California. During the 1960s, Mexican-American activists used the day as a mark for Mexican pride during the civil rights movement. Celebrated with parades, traditional Mexican folk dances, food, and other festivities, Cinco de Mayo is an earnest show of patriotism for many Mexican-Americans.
How do you celebrate Cinco de Mayo? I’m glad I made you ask random person reading this. In Mexico, most Cinco de Mayo celebrations occur in Puebla: the battle is reenacted and parades are thrown with people dressing in traditional attire, street vendors selling patriotic clothing or amazing food, and in general a good time is made of it. In the United States, we celebrate in a similar way – minus the battle reenactment – with dancing, folk music, and feasts! Oh my word I would kill for some flautas with refried beans and from El Puerto’s.
However you celebrate, just remember to stay safe and have fun! Also that if there’s any excuse to skip your diet then this would be it. Yummy!