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Happy Cinco de Mayo or the 5th of May. This national holiday has been celebrated officially in the U.S. since 2005. But the history is a long one with lots of celebrating along the way.
A widely held belief is that it's the day to celebrate Mexican independence. It is not. Cinco de Mayo / May 5th commemorates Mexico's success in the Battle of Puebla against France in 1862. The French army, marching to capture Mexico City, was defeated 70 miles away by the Mexicans, who were thought to be the underdogs due to being outnumbered and under-supplied. It was an epic win for Mexico. Revelers partied to celebrate the victory, and when news of France's defeat reached California, they celebrated there, too.
The French eventually did capture Mexico City, but that did not dampen enthusiasm for celebrating the victory of May 5th. It became a thing - mostly in the United States. In Mexico, May 5th is known as "Battle of Puebla Day" or "Battle of Cinco de Mayo", and is not a national holiday. In fact, with the exception of the state of Puebla - where they hold fiestas, parades, reenactments of the battle, and other festivities - observation of the day is optional in the rest of the country.
Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a celebration of family, food and friends. What is more Mexican than that? So let's celebrate all things Mexican. Whip up your favorite Mexican dish, put on some festive colorful clothes, and celebrate. Even during a quarantine we can still have a little FIESTA!!!