So, not too many of us perhaps know the story of what actually happened on the first Cinco de Mayo in 1862. (Just for fun: A Mexican army of 4,000 expelled Napoleon III's force of doubled size from Puebla, a town 100 miles east of Mexico City, both earning a major victory for Mexico and preventing the French from adequately supplying the Confederate army in the run-up to the battle of Gettysburg).
That was important, and that's why it's also important to take time out to commemorate the event with exciting events around Tulsa, with everything from celebrating Latin culture to helping needy pets. So those looking for an excuse to celebrate should look no further than our own city. Viva Tulsa!
On Saturday, May 8, Mohawk Park, 175 E. Second St., looks to host the city's largest Cinco de Mayo event to date, and it's sponsored by Mi Tierra Entertainment.
The 5 de Mayo 2010 Festival Latino runs 11am--11pm and upwards of 8,000 people are expected to attend and celebrate Tulsa's vibrant Latin American community.
There will be 15 live musical acts, two dance performances by the Ballet Folklorico Tierra Meztizo and the Ballet Folklorico Sol Azteca, and performances by DJ Jezi from Colombia and DJ Kike from Venezuela, who will play mixes of today's salsa, merengue, reggaeton and tropical rhythm hits. A Kids Zone will also be available as well as food and drinks from various vendors.
Advance tickets are $10, and if you want to pay at the door, it's $15. From each ticket, $1 will be donated to one of two charities: the Youth Mentoring Program at Kendall Wittier and St. Jude's Children's Research Hospital. For more information, visit mitierraent.com or call 551-6000.
The weather forecast for the week of Cinco de Mayo is predicted to be in the breezy, sunny 70s. What better way to celebrate this spring holiday than to renew your efforts at getting in shape?
April 30, Fleet Feet Sports Tulsa will put on its Sixth Annual Cinco de Mayo Run at Veterans' Park downtown, 1875 S. Boulder.
There will be a 5K timed race starting at 7pm as well as a one-mile non-timed Fun Run at 6:30pm. Adult registration for both will include a T-shirt, and additional shirts will be available for purchase at the event. Stick around after the run for a great party, too! For more information and to register for the run, visit fleetfeettulsa.com.
On the actual day of May 5, a Mexican restaurant in South Tulsa will be taking the opportunity to help out the community.
From 11am--11:30pm, Compadres Mexican Grill, 7104 S. Sheridan, in partnership with People Empowering People Community Outreach, will be donating a portion of its revenue to the construction of a new community center this summer -- in light of the current economic climate forcing the City of Tulsa to close some community centers.
Come party for a cause, and enjoy Wednesday's special of $4.99 enchiladas and $2.99 margaritas the whole time. For more information, visit compadresgrill.com or find their event page on Facebook.
It is Cinco de Mayo for the animals and animal lovers, too. On May 1, the Humane Society of Tulsa, 6232 E. 60th Street, will take an unusual approach to helping out needy animals with an event called Ritas for Rescues.
Admission to the party will be $25, but it goes to help homeless animals, and the cover includes food and all of the margaritas you can down!
There will also be a silent auction and live entertainment, and T-shirts will be available for purchase. Sondra Gray, author of children's book "According to Punkin," a story about a kitten the author found abandoned at a loading dock, will be on hand for a meet-and-greet and book signing. For more information, visit tulsapets.com.
Finally, if big events aren't your thing, celebrate by going out to eat and party.
Tulsa boasts a plethora of delicious and authentic choices for Mexican dining. Some of the best options include El Guapo downtown, Chimi's (with locations around town), Senor Tequila on Brookside or El Tequila at 51st and Harvard. Andale's at 61st and Yale has plans to host a huge party with live music on the patio and food.
If those don't entice your appetite, enjoy whatever themed logo Google will cook up -- get online, find the nearest Mexican restaurant, order queso and guacamole and celebrate the holiday margarita-style.
And as always, Taco Bueno and Taco Bell are always no more than a few miles away for those who will have to celebrate faux and on-the-go. Who could object to having one more reason to purchase a muchaco or a 5-layer burrito (it's just 89 cents!)?
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