10 Fun Facts About Cinco De Mayo

Posted by Karen Erdelac on May 5, 2021

10 Fun Facts About Cinco De MayoCinco de Mayo is widely celebrated in the United States, but there is a lot we may not know about this fun holiday. While many of us think of it as a day to go out and enjoy a few margaritas, it has a great deal of history and intrigue behind it. Here we take a look at ten fun facts about Cinco de Mayo.

1. “While it does celebrate a national victory, Cinco de Mayo isn't Mexican Independence Day. The actually Mexican Independence Day is celebrated on September 16.”

2. “Cinco de Mayo, or the fifth of May, is a holiday that celebrates the date of the Mexican army's May 5, 1862 victory over France at the Battle of Puebla during the Franco-Mexican War. The day, which falls on Tuesday, May 5 in 2020, is also known as Battle of Puebla Day.”

3. “The Mexican Army was largely outnumbered and poorly supplied. In fact, they were known as a rag-tag army and only had outdated guns at their disposal. And yet, as little as 2,000 Mexican soldiers—some of whom hid behind tall cactus plants—defeated 6,000 French soldiers during the battle, which lasted from daybreak to early evening.”

4. “At one time, Cinco de Mayo was widely celebrated in all of Mexico and by Mexicans living in former Mexican territories, such as Texas and California. After a while, it was ignored in Mexico but the celebrations continued north of the border where people never got out of the habit of remembering the famous battle.”

5. “In the United States, Cinco de Mayo is widely interpreted as a celebration of Mexican culture and heritage, particularly in areas with substantial Mexican-American populations.”

6. “Cinco de Mayo was first celebrated in the United States in 1863 in Southern California. The celebration was in support of solidarity with Mexico against French rule. By the 1930s the holiday became an opportunity to celebrate Mexican identity, promote ethnic consciousness and build community solidarity.”

7. “Cinco de Mayo wasn’t recognized in the United States until 1933 when President Franklin Roosevelt helped create the “Good Neighbor Policy” to improve relationships with Latin American countries.”

8. “It was recognized as a national holiday in the U.S. in 2005. Congress issued a resolution recognizing the historical significance of Cinco. They called upon the President (George W. Bush) to make a proclamation for the holiday to be celebrated across the nation.”

9. “Not surprisingly, 47% of all drinks ordered on Cinco de Mayo are margaritas. Tequila sales easily double within the week leading up to this infamous holiday. But, long ago this beloved Mexican alcohol couldn’t be enjoyed by all Mexican people. Centuries ago, Aztec priests used to make a milky beer-like drink from the agave plant called pulque. Only the priests could consume this precursor of tequila, which after a steep decline is slowly beginning to make a comeback.”

10. “Cinco de Mayo merits the consumption of lots of Mexican food – and avocados rise to the top because you need them for guacamole, a popular food staple. Americans on this holiday alone are expected to consume more than 70 million pounds of avocados, according to the California Avocado Commission.”

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Topics: Holiday