Why We Celebrate Cinco De Mayo While Mexico Doesn’t
Yeah, you read that headline right, While Cinco De Mayo is an important day in Mexico, It seems like we do a better job of marking it here in Amarillo then they do across the border.
The Battle of Puebla
So what gives? Why is this holiday such a big deal here in the United States? Let me start by telling you what it isn't. Cinco De Mayo is not Mexican Independence day. That day is actually September 16th and that IS a big deal in Mexico. May 5th is actually the day 2000 Mexican soldiers defeated the French Army with 6000 troops led by Napoleon III who was attempting to force then President Benito Juarez and his goverment out of Veracruz at a little town called Puebla de Los Angeles which is just a hair over two hours east of Mexico City by car today.
It was originally a holiday of defiance
The day was declared a national holiday and was originally treated as a reminder of Mexican defiance over invading armies, very much a David vs. Goliath theme not the care free "cinco de drinko" party it's become in the United States. Even to this day for the folks of Puebla and surrounding areas its more of a memorial day with more informal traditional celebrations.
Most of what we know today about Cinco De Mayo as a drinking holiday really came from a lot of clever marketing from the alcohol industry in the 1980s. Nothing wrong with it but I like to say at least know that when you're picking up that cold one tonight at least think of the folks in Puebla who defied the odds.
Oh and if you're all about the Margaritas... We just happen to have a handy guide to some of the best in town. and while you're out... you might just want to make sure you have a safe ride home.
Feliz Cinco De Mayo!