Every year on the fifth of May, Mexican flags can be spotted waving at homes and businesses across the United States. There are parades and dances. Schools and theater groups put on special presentations and bars offer drink specials. But despite what many people think, Cinco de Mayo is not the Mexican Fourth of July. (Mexico celebrates its independence from Spain on September 16.)
Though it's a holiday commemorating the Battle of Puebla against the French in 1862, Cinco de Mayo has become an ethnic holiday that celebrates Mexican culture and the Mexican army's never-give-up spirit. Mexican-Americans — and, really, anyone who likes to root for underdogs fighting the good fight — celebrate the holiday in many ways. Here, we list a few of the major festivities going on around the country on Wednesday (May 5) and beyond.
New York City
Limp Bizkit Cinco de Mayo Show: Fred Durst and company launch an ethnic celebration and their Gold Cobra Tour.
When: Wednesday at 7 p.m.
Location: Gramercy Theater, 127 E. 23rd Street
Cost: Free. Wristbands will be given out starting at noon.
Cinco de Mayo Parade
When: Sunday, 12-2 p.m.
Location: Central Park West between West 110th and West 72nd Streets
Cinco de Mayo Pub Crawl
Date: Wednesday, 5-9 p.m.
Cost: $10 to $20 depending on which "crawl" you choose. (Go to CincodeMayoNYC.com for more info.)
Cinco de Mayo Fiesta Olvera Street: Sadly, the biggest party in the country officially happened last weekend. But you can still visit any of the many restaurants that line the historic Olvera Street, where the unofficial parties continue. Various small parades and performances are also expected throughout the day.
When: Wednesday, 12-8 p.m.
Location: Olvera Street (start across from Union Station at 845 N. Alameda)
Festival Cinco de Mayo: Head to the heart of the Windy City's Mexican community for three days of festivities.
When: Friday, 6-11 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, 12 p.m.-11 p.m.
Location: The Little Village/Pilsen (26th Street and Kostner Avenue)
Cost: Varies, though parades and many performances are free.
Colorado boasts one of the longest celebrations with a two-day Celebrate Culture Festival.
When: Saturday and Sunday, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.
Location: Civic Center Park
Suns vs. Spurs Play-Off Game: Along with many others in Arizona, the Suns are protesting the state's recent immigration law and showing solidarity with the city's Latino community, by wearing "Los Suns" jerseys.
When: Wednesday at 6 p.m.
Location: US Airways Center
Cost: $67.50 and up per ticket
How are you celebrating Cinco de Mayo? Talk about it in the comments.