This weekend was the annual Cinco de Mayo Festival in downtown Aurora. If you really want to get to know the community of Aurora, one of its local festivals is the place to be. Saturday many Aurorans braved the rain and weather to celebrate the Battle of Puebla on May 5th, 1862. Sunday, the crowds were thicker as the sun and mild weather made it a great day to be out in the city. The festival featured a food court with authentic Mexican food, performances by local musicians and performers as well as a carnival with games and rides for the kids.
Although Cinco de Mayo is traditionally seen as a Mexican-American holiday, it really should be celebrated by all of us. The bravery of the some-4,000 Mexican troops who defeated a French force nearly 3-times its size that day in 1862 helped keep the French under Napoleon III from supplying the Confederate army. This, in turn, helped the north attain victory and end the Civil War two years later. Besides which, Cinco de Mayo is definately another reason for us to all celebrate something and that’s perfectly fine with me.
Parking was great – we followed the signs and parked in the ATA lot behind Walter Payton’s Roundhouse. From there it was just an easy walk through the tunnel to the lot on Spring and Lincoln where the festival was. The stage was set up close to Spring Street and drew a big crowd. There were also several booths serving authentic Mexican food but the real highlight for many kids was the carnival featuring several rides and games. It wasn’t a huge festival but enough to kick off the spring and summer festival season here in Aurora. If you’re looking for a great way to get everyone out for some fun, check out the Cinco de Mayo festival next year in downtown Aurora.