Every year Chicago celebrates Cinco De Mayo to honour the victory of Mexico over the French army in the Battle of Puebla, on May 5th, 1862. Whether you are Mexican or not, there are plenty of things to do in Chicago during this holiday, starting from parades and pub crawls to festivals, special fairs, and folk performances.
The Cinco de Mayo parade is the biggest highlight of the holiday as thousands of Chicagoans come to watch and participate. The annual procession starts at the intersection of Cermak Road and Wood Street at noon and goes west through Cermak to Marshall Boulevard. After the parade, there is an annual festival at Douglas Park featuring live music, delicious Mexican food and beverages, a carnival, and vendors selling Mexican souvenirs and crafts.
Another Cinco de Mayo festival is held at Toyota Park. This family-friendly event includes activities for kids, live music, carnival, arts, and crafts.
Cinco de Mayo in Chicago is also celebrated with parties and club events. Duet Dance Studio hosts Cinco de Mayo Latin Dance Party with Merengue, Salsa, Bachata and Cha Cha. The annual Cinco de Mayo Pilsen Cantina Crawl takes place on a trolley with DJ’s, live bands and lots of stops for a delicious cocktail.
If you prefer a more healthy way to celebrate, run 5 miles around Montrose Harbor during the Cinco de Miler run to celebrate the holiday with exercise.