ModSquad Celebrates Cinco de Mayo

While the common misconception is that the fifth of May is Mexico’s Independence Day, it is not (that’s actually September 16th). What May 5th actually commemorates is the Mexican Army’s victory over the French troops at the Battle of Puebla in 1862. Even though the day has seen celebrations in the United States as far back as the first anniversary of the battle, the fifth of May generally goes by unnoticed in Mexico. The celebrations were primarily California-based until the 1950s, finally picking up nationwide traction a few decades later. Unfortunately, a primary reason for the date’s current popularity can be attributed to the savvy marketing of beer companies and the like, which promote Cinco de Mayo as a day to imbibe.

While some revelers may take things too far, with inappropriately themed celebrations that do little to honor the memory of those Mexicans who fought for their country, we like to take this day to acknowledge the many contributions to modern culture that come from our neighbors to the south. And we offer a nod of the head to those Mods located in the United Mexican States (the country’s official name!). On this fifth day of May, we asked our team:

How do you acknowledge Cinco de Mayo?

In my city, Cinco de Mayo is seen as a time to showcase local Mexican culture. We regularly go to our church on the Sunday before Cinco de Mayo to watch traditional dance and music performances. Everyone from two-year-olds to people in their 80s and 90s perform, tell stories, and prepare the favorite traditional Mexican dishes of their families. — Mary Lex

I usually look for a local festival, where we can take in musical performances, try different foods, and browse arts and crafts. We’ll also sometimes stop into a local restaurant or grill up fajitas. — Steve Henry

Mexican food and beer and, of course, you have to sing (mostly not actually traditional) Mexican songs, badly. (But that’s all my singing.) Dia de los Muertos is the real awesomeness. — Lucien Parsons

Others keep things low-key, marking the day by incorporating Mexican elements into their meals. Of these folks, we asked: What foods and drinks do you enjoy on Cinco de Mayo?

I can’t really cook Mexican food, so Cinco de Mayo is always a time for me to explore foods I’ve never tried with friends. I might never remember how to say the dishes’ names again, but it’s always delicious and a fun time. — Jay Biros

It’s the only time of year I make a point to drink a Mexican Beer. — Beth Ryan

I like to grill fajitas with good old Goya Mojo marinade, and of course drink Mexican beer. But that’s also every day, so… — Rich Weil

I go with the classic margarita with salt and chips, along with salsa and guacamole. — Gina Miller

Chicken Mole, of course. My favorite Mexican dish for a celebration. Then guac, chips, fiery hot salsa, and my famous nachos (famous inside the four walls of my home). — David Wohlwend

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