Happy Cinco de Mayo! Well, almost. Cinco de Mayo is a celebration held every year on May 5th. Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is not about celebrating the independence of Mexico. Its real purpose is to celebrate the historic day where the Mexican army defeated the strong French army in 1862 at the Battle of Puebla. The holiday has certainly adapted here in the United States into a day of celebration and fun! We still have a couple of days, so here are a last few minute fun and different ideas of how to celebrate:
Have a Dips Party!
I’m talking guacamole, salsa, queso! The works! In my home, we have a night every so often where all we do is eat dips because dips really can be filling, as well as fun to make. Try making homemade salsa because there is such a big difference between salsa from a jar and freshly made salsa. Here’s a tip: Try roasting all the peppers and tomatoes first before blending it all together in order for your salsa to have a smoky undertone!
Play Loteria with Your Friends!
Loteria essentially means “lottery” in Spanish and is a game that anyone can play! It’s a lot like Bingo, but instead of using numbers on ping pong balls, it consists of using animal pictures on a deck of cards. This game was created a long time ago, just a few years after the Battle of Puebla. If you want to take the historical route of celebrating, this is the way to go!
Go to an Authentic Mexican Restaurant!
There are plenty of places in every state to go and get some authentic Mexican food! And no, I am not talking about Taco Bell here. I’m talking about restaurants that serve Mole Poblano which is a traditional Cinco de Mayo dish. Go out and spend a little money! (Some of the restaurants you don’t think you can afford might also have some Cinco de Mayo specials.) Find the places that are owned by people who know the food, not the ones owned by people trying to fake authentic Mexican food. And don’t forget to order a great margarita while you’re there!
Find a Parade!
In Mexico, Cinco do Mayo is a federal holiday. Therefore, people get the day off and there are a lot of parades! Men will dress up in Mexican and French military uniforms to represent the history of the day. Kids will be all around because they get the day off too! A lot of cities in the United States have taken note and now have their own parades. These parades aren’t as large of an event, but it can still be super fun!
Make Your Own Piñata!
I’ll be honest with you, this can be difficult. I’ve tried to make piñata’s a few times, and it takes a bit of effort. But, if you enjoy DIY projects, I think this is a fun one to take on! It can even be done just by using empty cereal boxes! Find a template and go for it. Just remember not to forget the candy when you’re done!
Cinco de Mayo, like any day in history, represents something. Don’t forget that! You can do more than just go out and party. Try something new and have a happy Cinco de Mayo!