Sometimes we confuse Cinco de Mayo with “Mexico’s Independence Day.” In fact, what Mexicans celebrate is a victory over France’s occupation. Therefore, Cinco de Mayo is a celebration that rejoices Mexico reestablishing its sovereignty from France who was trying to reconquer the land.
Mexico’s General Ignacio Zaragoza defeated a well-trained and equipped French army at the battle of Puebla. Puebla was a state within the Mexican Empire. Although they had little to no chance, Zaragoza’s hodgepodge of warriors victoriously beat back the mighty French Empire army on May 5th, 1862.
Mexico’s real Declaration of Independence from Spain was on September 16th. Indeed, Mexico was granted its independence on September 27, 1821. However, the Mexican Government changed the date to Mexico’s grassroots beginnings of the revolutionary movement. Miguel Hidalgo y Costilla, who was a parish priest, started the “Cry of Dolores.” Thus, he gathered together an army of countrymen, then, they went from town-to-town defeating Spanish rule. Unfortunately, he was caught and executed for treason.
Cinco de Mayo in the United States
Traditionally, in the United States, the celebration of Cinco de Mayo is with Mexican food and libation. There, restaurants offer theme parties with Mexico flags and other south-of-the-border decors. Parks and neighborhoods all around America celebrate Cinco de Mayo with Mexican music, authentic dances, and elaborate firework displays. Mexico has contributed many of their influences on the American way of life. Both countries daily practice centuries of history and cultural differences.
The Real Thing
Celebrating Cinco de Mayo in Mexico is a whole lot different than in America. All of Mexico recognizes the holiday, but the real celebration happens in its place of origin. The historic stance occurred in the municipality of Puebla de Los Angeles in the state of Puebla. It is where you want to be on Cinco de Mayo. There are reenactments where members of the army dress up in French and Mexican army uniforms. After Mexico wins the battle (reenactment), there are massive parades with thousands of people filling the streets with great cheers.
The celebration continues with plenty of delicious food, authentic music, and traditional dance. There are massive gatherings where kids take turns batting at piñatas filled with candies, cookies and small toys. Family and friends share time and participate in outdoor activities. It’s a day for all of Mexico to be proud. If you ever have the opportunity to visit Puebla, Mexico during the Cinco de Mayo celebration, it will be an experience that you will never forget.
Remember, at Top Mexico Real Estate … we make it happen!