The Wildest Cinco De Mayo Parties In America


Photo: Kyle Nishioka

Cinco de Mayo has very little to do with Mexican independence or American culture — but that doesn’t stop countless major U.S. cities from cutting loose like it’s the Fourth of July.From margaritas to Mariachi, here’s a rundown of the biggest fiestas taking place across the country this weekend. 

Los Angeles, California

The Fiesta Broadway is billed as the 'largest Cinco de Mayo celebration in the world.'

This year, the monster street fair was held on Sunday, April 29, drawing nearly half a million people to downtown Los Angeles for a seven-hour celebration.

Denver, Colorado

The Mile High City is home to 'Cinco in the Park,' a two-day festival hosted by Denver's Civic Park centre. The celebration typically attracts more than 400,000 visitors and features over 350 food and retail vendors.

Look out for three stages of live entertainment, a Chihuahua race, and the highly-anticipated annual Green chilli-Bowl Cook-off when the party, now entering its 25th year, kicks off with a parade at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 5.

Phoenix, Arizona

The 19th annual Cinco de Mayo Phoenix festival begins on Saturday, May 5 at 2.p.m. and runs through midnight before picking up again Sunday morning.

The two-day bash features a mix of live music, boxing, arts and crafts, and half-pound turkey legs. More than $50,000 in scholarships will also be awarded at the event.

St. Paul, Minnesota

The 'Spiciest Celebration' in Minnesota takes place in St.Paul's District del Sol, which opens its streets to more than 100,000 attendees each year.

The party starts on Saturday May 5 at 9 a.m. and keeps raging through the evening.

What should you expect?

Six blocks of traditional Latin food, music, and dance, a lowrider car show, and a 'people's choice' salsa tasting contest.

Chicago, Illinois

This year, Chicago's Little Village neighbourhood -- the heart of the city's Mexican community -- will host its third annual Cinco de Mayo festival from Friday, May 4 to Sunday, May 6.

The three-day celebration is said 'to be 'one of the largest Mexican cultural fests in the Midwest.'

In late September, Little Village is also the site of the Chicago's annual Mexican Independence Day Parade.

Portland, Oregon

Get ready to see professional luchadores (Mexican wrestlers) riling things up at Portland's 28th Annual Cinco de Mayo Fiesta, which starts today and continues through Sunday, May 6.

The extravagant celebration takes place along the waterfront and showcases a variety of local talent and professional entertainment, including ethnic Mexican ballet dance and a Latin rock band.

San Francisco, CA

The Mission neighbourhood in San Francisco celebrates its eighth annual Cinco de Mayo spectacular this weekend in Dolores Park.

The family-friendly, alcohol-free extravaganza is expected to draw more than 5,000 people -- just the right number to start a giant Zumba-thon Exercise Class, which will launch the entire event at 10 a.m. on Saturday, May 5.

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