Happy Cinco de Mayo!
Many Americans will take part in Cinco de Mayo festivities on May 5, enjoying Mexican food and drinks in a spirited environment. But few know what the day is really about, often confusing it with Mexican Day of Independence, which is actually on September 16.
What is Cinco de Mayo?
Cinco de Mayo, (Spanish for “Fifth of May”) is recognized as a day of celebration of the 1862 Battle of Puebla, when a small Mexican army comprised of indigenous people defeated French troops who were there to take advantage of Mexico’s internal strife and establish a monarchy. While this battle did not in itself free Mexico (the country’s actual Independence Day is celebrated on September 16), the victory at Puebla became a symbol of Mexican resistance to foreign domination.
Why do we celebrate Cinco de Mayo in the US?
In the mid-20th century, the celebration of Cinco de Mayo became a way for Mexican immigrants to show pride for their heritage, and a way for those of non-Mexican descent to show their support – or just party with tequila and other Mexican delicacies. While people in Puebla celebrate this occasion annually with festivities, parades and re-enactments, Cinco de Mayo is not a federal holiday in Mexico and is just like any other day for most people in Mexico.
Where to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo at the shore
Here are some of the fun events planned today along the southern Jersey shore. If you choose to imbibe, don’t drive! Instead, make sure you have a designated driver or use a ride-share service like Uber or Lyft.
Enjoy authentic Mexican fare at Red’s Jersey Mex, located at 206 East 11th Avenue. Or stop by the Cinco de Mayo Restaurant – yes, that’s actually its name – to join in their fiesta. They are located at 1039 West Avenue, Ocean City.
There is no better place to celebrate Cinco de Mayo – on May 5 and all summer long – than at Buckets Margarita Bar and Cantina, where you can enjoy Mexican fare and cocktails on their deck overlooking the bay. Today they will host a special Cinco de Mayo Sunday Funday Fest from 6:00 pm – 10:00 pm, featuring live music, drink specials and, of course, their delicious Mexican dishes. Located at 9631 Third Avenue, Stone Harbor.
On May 5, Quahogs Seafood Shack and Bar will be opening for the season and will feature Cinco de Mayo specials. They’re located at 206 97th Street, Stone Harbor.
Enjoy live music, cold drinks, and a special Mexican-inspired menu itesm including slow smoked Brisket Fajitas and Mexican Chicken Tinga at the Dogtooth Bar and Grill, 100 East Taylor Avenue in Wildwood from 3:00 pm – 6:00 pm.
A Cinco de Mayo festival will also be held at the Mudhen Brewing Company from 3:00 pm – 4:00 pm at 127 West Rio Grande Avenue, Wildwood.
Come stop by the Taco Shop of Cape May for an all-day Cinco de May celebration. The Taco Shop is located in Cape May Courthouse at 5 Courthouse South Dennis Road.
And, finally, another restaurant with the special day in its name is the Cinco de Mayo Restaurant located at 1246 Route 109 in Cape May.
Stay safe and Happy Cinco de Mayo!