You may not think of Put-in-Bay when you think of Cinco de Mayo, but rest assured, we know how to celebrate! From Rita’s Cantina to Big Man’s Burrito Stand, and every place in between, the island restaurants and bars open their doors and welcome everyone. Just like St. Patrick’s Day when everyone is Irish, today everyone is Mexican on the island! Join us for the festivities! Make sure to get your Put-in-Bay island lodging reserved in advance!
What is Cinco de Mayo?
Cinco de Mayo is often confused for Mexican Independence Day, but could not be farther from the truth. Its full name is “La Batalla del Cinco de Mayo” or “The Battle of May 5th“, and it’s a day when many people take the chance to whip out their Frida Kahlo’s t-shirts, donkey piñatas, fake moustaches, big sombreros, and chug down a few Margaritas and bottles of Tequila.
In reality, Cinco de Mayo is just the anniversary of the small, but very significant battle for Puebla, the fourth largest state in the country with a million and a half habitants, located two and a half hours south east from Mexico City. We recommend enjoying the event at Rita’s Cantina or Mr Ed’s Bar, a little closer to home.
What Really Happened on May 5th?
The battle for Puebla occurred in 1862, more than 50 years after Independence from Spain. It was one year after President Benito Juarez decided Mexico would stop paying its external debt to its European creditors. In this era, Britain and Spain negotiated a peaceful resolution to this outcome and it did not represent a problem. On the other hand, Napoleon III, the then ruler of France, decided to send his imperial army to Mexico to claim its debt. France is NOT part of the Perry’s Monument peace history.
Do Mexicans celebrate Cinco de Mayo?
In Mexico, May 5th is not a national Holiday and it’s mostly remembered only in the state where the battle took place, Puebla, and its surroundings. There they throw a parade in which the army and even the Mayor participate, along with people in costumes and battle reenactments that take place out in the streets. Once festivities are over, schools close down so kids get to go back home and call it a day.