How to celebrate Cinco de Mayo in BK without being a culturally-appropriating douche bag

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Photo via Mano a Mano: Mexican Culture Without Borders / Facebook

Cinco de Mayo has somewhat deplorably come to be associated with margaritas and happy hours, drink specials, tacos, and generally tone deaf appropriation (I mean, Drinko de Mayo, seriously?). At Brokelyn, we are strong believers in the merits of discounts and day drinking, however when it comes to holidays that pay respect to battles fought in foreign countries, especially foreign countries that our Federal Government is currently on a racist tirade against – we condone other main means of celebration.

For some background: May 5th (Cinco de Mayo) is the anniversary of the Battle of Puebla, an 1862 Mexican victory over Napoleon III’s French forces in the city of Puebla de Zaragoza. Cinco de Mayo is not Mexican Independence Day – that’s September 16 and completely separate.

In Puebla, Cinco de Mayo is celebrated with a military service followed by a reenactment and parade of floats. If you’re reading this, you probably live in or near Brooklyn, and thus have access to an incredible Mexican community that will be sharing their culture in a variety of ways tomorrow. Take advantage.


Mano a Mano
40th St. between 5th and 6th ave., Sunset Park
Sunday, May 7, 2pm

Local artists, non-profits and cultural groups will be coming together for this festival, parade, and celebration of Mexican culture. Information will be provided regarding immigrants’ rights and other vital services offered in the community.


Cinco de Mayo 5k Run
Prospect Park on Central Drive
Sunday, May 7, 11am
$30 to enter

Head to prospect park to run off your Mole at the 20th Cinco de Mayo 5k run! Held by the Mexican Athletic Club of New York.


Cinco de Mayo Art Exhibit
539 9th St., Park Slope
Ongoing till Sunday, May 7

Feast your eyes on the works of Gabriel Rivera and learn about Cinco de Mayo and plenty of other examples of Mexican history and culture.


Eat Your Art: An Alternative Cinco de Mayo
Lot 45, Bushwick
Friday, May 5 and Saturday, May 6

This night features works of poetry, performance art, and music that celebrate and commemorate Mexico. There will be dinner, drinks, dancing and more.


Even if you can’t make any of the array of events celebrating the holiday this weekend, at least try to patronize your local Mexican joint. Here are some of our favorites, or you can just go wander Sunset Park – everything is pretty damn authentic round those parts.

1. Citrico 
681 Washington Ave., Bed-Stuy

2. Cozcal De Allende
6824 3rd Ave., Bay Ridge

3. Chavela’s
736 Franklin Ave., Bed-Stuy

4. Mesa Coyoacan
372 Graham Ave., Williamsburg

5. Haab
396 6th Ave., Park Slope
202 Leonard St., Williamsburg

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