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Why do we celebrate Cinco De Mayo
Many of us will partake in Cinco de Mayo festivities this weekend and not even realize what we are truly celebrating. Although I am Puerto Rican, I always embrace celebrating others cultural celebrations. I attend the St. Patricks Day parade as well as some of the many Italian and German festivals in our area. I love seeing people take pride in their nationalities and demonstrate how proud they are. With Cinco de Mayo just a few days away, I decided to write this blog to let others know why this day is celebrated.
The common misconception is that it is Mexico Independence Day which it is not. Cinco de Mayo, which literally means May 5th in English, is a Mexican Holiday celebrating the Battle of Puebla, which took place on May 5, 1862. In 1861, France sent a massive army to invade Mexico to collect some war debts. The Mexican army was much smaller and less equipped than the French army and therefore the odds were heavily stacked against them. Their chances of winning any battles were seemingly non existent. The French army rolled through Mexico en route to Mexico City uncontested until it arrived at Puebla.
Against all odds and even though they seemingly did not stand a chance to win this battle, the Mexican army was able to win this victory. The victory was short lived after the French army regrouped and eventually took over Mexico City but the fact that the Mexican army was able to pull off this great victory was cause for celebration and is remembered every May 5th.
Although it is celebrated in Puebla and in many US cities with large Mexican populations it TMs a fun holiday, really more about celebrating the Mexican way of life than about remembering a battle which happened 150 years ago. It is sometimes referred to as a Mexican St. Patrick TMs Day Cinco de Mayo is actually celebrated more in the US than it is in Mexico.
And for the record, Mexican Independence day is on September 16th.
Happy Friday to all.
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