Every May 5 you’re likely to see a crowd of convivial partiers hopping from patio to patio, firmly holding neon green margaritas rimmed with salt, and eating mounds of crunchy tortilla chips paired with freshly made guacamole. 

Colorful pennant flags line the perimeter of corner restaurants eager to welcome anxious patrons inside for what they deem appropriate traditions to celebrate what they think is Mexico’s independence from Spain. For the record, that date is Sept. 16, 1810. 

May 5 actually represents the celebration of the day when the underdogs, Mexico, unexpectedly defeated the French army in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862

One year prior, Mexico had decided to stop paying interest on a debt owed to the United Kingdom, Spain and France. After this default various negotiations and treaties were discussed, which ultimately led to a confrontation between France and Mexico. After defeating a smaller army in Mexico, the French descended onto the soil of the state of Puebla for another attack. Little did the French know that Mexico President Benito Juarez had rallied the support of a small group of devoted soldiers, who conquered the French troops. 

Thus the celebration known as Cinco de Mayo.

Today, Mexico’s influence on Texas’ culture is undeniable. The food is a large component of that appreciation, which has naturally evolved and culminated into a deliciously luminous mashup of the most vibrant flavors from Mexico and Texas. 

Looking for some exciting ways you can celebrate Cinco de Mayo responsibly? Check out these five events happening around Tarrant County. 

Friday, May 5

The Juan and Only Cinco de Mayo Bash

Texas Republic Bar and Kitchen will hold its Cinco de Mayo celebration on May 5. (Courtesy photo | Texas Republic Facebook page)
  • Texas Republic Bar and Kitchen, 945 Foch St., Fort Worth
  • 4 p.m. to 2 a.m.
  • Free
  • Attend what’s described as the “Biggest Cinco de Mayo party in Fort Worth.” Every guest gets a raffle ticket to win a trip to Mexico. So, if that’s not reason enough to register for this party, we don’t know what will. 
  • Featuring cash and prize piñatas at 6, 8 and 10 p.m., tacos and margaritas.

Cinco de Mayo Market

Levitt Pavillion in Arlington will host a Cinco de Mayo market on May 6. (Courtesy photo | Levitt Pavilion Facebook Page)
  • Levitt Pavilion, 100 W Abram St, Arlington
  • 7:30 p.m.
  • Free
  • Mariachi Fuzion will be the opening concert for Texas Latin. Those attending are encouraged to bring lawn chairs. You also can bring coolers packed with food and your favorite beverages, including alcohol, but no glass containers.

Fiesta de Mayo: DFW Cinco de Mayo Party

Texas Live will host a Cinco de Mayo celebration on May 5 featuring tacos and margaritas, among other things. (Courtesy photo | Texas Live Facebook page)
  • Texas Live, 1650 E. Randol Mill Road, Arlington
  • 4 p.m.
  • Tickets required; prices start at $15
  • Purchase your ticket to Arlington’s Texas Live for live music and DJs in every venue, custom margaritas, themed food offerings, major prize giveaways, and performances by various entertainers! Every ticket comes with your choice of custom margaritas, event swag items, and a special offer for $5 margaritas after you finish the drinks included in your package. Plus, delicious, themed food special offerings in each venue for purchase.

Saturday, May 6

Fort Worth Cinco De Mayo Taco Festival

  • Bar 2909, 2909 West Morton St., Fort Worth
  • 11 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • $5 admission, kids under 12 free. Register here
  • Enjoy tacos, live DJs, local shopping and more.

Cinco de Mayo at the Stockyards

Taco Heads will have a Cinco de Mayo celebration on May 6. (Courtesy photo | Taco Heads Facebook page)
  • Taco Heads, 2349 Main St., Fort Worth
  • Free from 4-6 p.m., $5 after 6 p.m.
  • The festive event will feature music from The Latin Express, margaritas and of course, tacos. Questions? 817-662-1064 or tacoheads.com

Deah Mitchell writes about more than food. You can email her at deah.mitchell@fortworthreport.org.

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Deah Berry Mitchell is the founder and CEO of Nostalgia Black Group, a multimedia company whose core business is preserving Black cultural history through writing, public speaking, tourism and technology....