Great Bend will celebrate Cinco de Mayo on Saturday so it’s time for our annual history lesson.
“Cinco de Mayo” means Fifth of May, so it’s a holiday name akin to our “Fourth of July.” But Cino de Mayo is NOT Mexico’s Independence Day.
It’s Mexico’s St. Patrick’s Day.
Well, that isn’t exactly correct, either. But like St. Patrick’s Day, Cinco de Mayo is a celebration of national heritage as much as anything, at least north of the border. According to History.com: “Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War (1861-1867). A relatively minor holiday in Mexico, in the United States Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly in areas with large Mexican-American populations. Cinco de Mayo traditions include parades, mariachi music performances and street festivals in cities and towns across Mexico and the United States.”
Here in Great Bend, it’s a day for festivities in the courthouse square: Pinatas and food booths and music and a parade. The Latino community celebrates some of the outstanding young people and everyone has a good time.
Mexico marks its Independence Day as Sept. 16, 1810, when war was declared on the Spanish colonial government.
While we’re celebrating holidays, don’t forget that Sunday is Mothers Day.