Cinco de Mayo is the celebration of the Mexican army’s victory over the French in the Battle of Puebla. What is wonderful is that no matter where you live in the US, you can take the time on May 5th to join the celebration and enjoy the unique aspects of Mexican culture. Some cities go above and beyond to mark this significant achievement in Mexican history with pub crawls, parades, street concerts, and more. Below we’ve highlighted seven of the top Cinco de Mayo parties in the United States – so make it a point to stop in if you live nearby, or take a trip this year to join the fiesta!
El Centro de la Raza’s 11th Annual Cinco de Mayo Celebration is free to the public and will take place on Saturday, May 7, 2015 from 12 PM – 4 PM at the Jefferson Community Center in Seattle. There will be children’s activities, raffle prizes, craft and informational booths, traditional food for sale, and live music by Folklore Mexicano Tonantzin, DJ Sonido Impacto, 4 En La Mira, Chief Sealth Mariachi/Dance Group, Asociacion de Charros Herencia Bonita, Desfile Multicultural, and Seattle Fandango Project.
In honor of its rich Mexican heritage, Nebraska’s South Omaha Latino community has been hosting Cinco de Mayo events for decades, since the 1930s, in fact. Annual festivities include a grand parade, delicious food, and live music. The events raise money for non profit groups, support local small businesses, and of course encourage Mexican cultural acceptance. There are massive crowds for the main stage acts on both Saturday and Sunday, where children 12 and under are free! Banda Troyana is playing on Mother’s Day and mothers get in free, too if they have a First National Bank card. There are carnival rides and midway games and a beer garden, plus an entire area just for kids. There’s a running with the bulls, but don’t worry, they are just mascot costumes, but it is a lot of fun. Lastly, the main event is the Cinco de Mayo parade where the streets will be lined with revelers.
The 23rd Annual Cinco de Mayo Phoenix Festival is one of the largest multicultural festivals in Arizona commemorating Mexico’s historic victory over the French Army in the 1862 Battle of Puebla. This two day street festival is located between the skyscrapers in downtown Phoenix on Washington Street and provides attendees with non-stop fun, music, games, and giveaways. Tickets range from $5 to $35 for the VIPs. There will be live music, including platinum artists, as well as lucha libre, scholarship giveaways for students, a boxing tournmanet, ballet, and much more!
There’s nothing like a good old fashioned pub crawl to celebrate a joyful holiday. This year in Boston’s infamous Fanieul Hall, all of the planning is being taken care of for you by the producers of the top rated bar crawls events in the country, PubCrawls.com. There’s nothing better than enjoying some great bar variety in a city like Boston, and when it’s in Fanieul Hall, it’s that much better. The atmosphere around town heats up when Cinco de Mayo rolls around. With so many different types of Mexican drinks such as Margaritas, Mezcal Cocktails, Sangrias, Cortes, Suenos, or Tequila shots – Cinco de Mayo will surely be a blast.
The west side of St. Paul turns into a festive party every Cinco de Mayo, and this year is no different. There’s a parade, a family fun run, a open air beer garden, live musical entertainment, a car show, and even a jalapeno eating contest! Stop by the sports zone to meet Minnesota Twins players and see some BMX tricks, or spend time at the demonstration stage where there will be cooking and gardening demos, among others. Lastly, the community village is an authentic “placita” market in Parque Castillo where you can treasure hunt for handmade arts and crafts, jewelry, t-shirts, airbrush, second-hand items, seedlings, produce and more. All the proceeds go back to benefit the neighborhood.
The 3rd Annual Hola Run is a celebration of fitness and Latino culture in San Jose, CA. Held on Cinco de Mayo weekend runners will be treated to live entertainment, dancers, shirts, medals for everyone and prizes after the race. Local radio stations and DJs will be at the start line, on the course and at the finish line fiesta. Everyone is welcome to attend and participate in this 5k run/walk. The first 1,000 registrants to sign up receive one free child ticket to Monterey Bay Aquarium or one free ticket to the Children’s Discovery Museum of San José.
Mission Neighborhood Centers’ twelfth annual San Francisco Cinco de Mayo, an alcohol-free, family friendly celebration will be held on Saturday, May 7th, 2016 on one of the Mission’s new trendy, main thoroughfares, occupying Valencia Street between 21st and 24th Streets. The celebration will showcase the very best of Mexican and Latin American cultures with a diverse array of Mexican and Latino foods, music, dance, and artistry for the entire family to enjoy. Attendees will enjoy rich cultural experiences and activities focused on retaining cultural traditions in its community. The Kid’s Zone will include a large variety of activities for children including balloon fun, art activities, a musical petting zoo, special guests, magic tricks and lots of laughs with Pipi the Clown. Talented artists will perform throughout the day on the main stage on the corner of Valencia & 24th Street. Attendees can expect to hear Mariachi, Salsa, Latin Hip Hop, and the melodic voices of Coro Solera, wafting through Valencia St. Over 65 vendors are expected to participate providing their delicious, diverse foods, showcasing their arts and crafts and empowering the multi-cultural community through greater awareness of their products and services.