It's that time of year again when it's culturally acceptable to wear a sombrero and get meat drunk off tacos and wander the streets of downtown Pasco. Yes, of course, I'm talking of everyone's favorite holiday to honor Tri-City's strong Chicano heritage, Cinco De Mayo. I’m still pretty new here, but I know in Denver we did things right with a grito contest and Chihuahua races. I have to say Pasco sounds like they are doing this party right, with a 2-day celebration.

What is Cinco de Mayo

Let's stop for a moment and talk about Cinco de Mayo itself. What is it? What's it celebrating, and why do we celebrate it here? In Mexico, Cinco de Mayo is not celebrated across the entire country; it's mostly observed in the state of Puebla, where the Mexicans’ victory over the European invaders occurred. The celebrations in Mexico often include parades and reenactments of the Battle of Puebla, but for most Mexicans, it’s just another typical day.

Meanwhile, in the United States, the holiday is celebrated as a way of honoring Mexican culture and heritage. The holiday really gained notoriety in the U.S. in the 1960s and 70s by Chicano activists because many identified with the victory of Indigenous Mexicans over European invaders during the Battle of Puebla. There you have it, a Mexican holiday almost exclusively celebrated in America.

Now, as for Pasco's party, let me tell you they went all out. Scheduled to kick off on Saturday, May 4th, and extend through Sunday, May 5th, this vibrant celebration is set to take over downtown Pasco with a plethora of activities for all ages.

Saturday's Spectacular Kickoff

The festivities will commence with the fan-favorite Cinco de Mayo Parade at 10 AM, starting at Volunteer Park. Expect a visual feast as colorful floats, spirited music, and dynamic dance performances parade through the streets. Following the parade, the excitement will continue with a thrilling boxing exhibition from 2 PM to 6 PM, showcasing the region's top pugilistic talent. As the day turns into evening, an exclusive street dance for guests aged 21 and over will kick off at 8 PM, promising a night of revelry and rhythm.

Sunday's Showdown of Style and Skill

Sunday's festivities will keep the energy high with the New Generations Car Club hosting a Car Show from 11 AM to 4 PM, featuring an impressive display of classic and contemporary vehicles. Car enthusiasts will have the opportunity to admire sleek rides and marvel at automotive craftsmanship. Adding to the excitement, a breakdancing competition from noon to 4 PM will pit local and regional dancers against each other in a battle of skill and style, showcasing the best moves from the streets.

Weekend Wonders

Throughout the weekend, festival-goers can indulge in a myriad of experiences, including:

Music and Entertainment:

Local bands and DJs will keep the atmosphere electric with a diverse lineup of tunes, while interactive entertainment and engaging MCs ensure non-stop fun.

Food and Traditions:

From authentic Mexican cuisine to local favorites, a variety of food vendors will tantalize taste buds, inviting attendees to savor the flavors of tradition.

Kids Zone:

Families can enjoy a plethora of activities in a dedicated area, including face painting, bounce houses, and games, ensuring smiles all around.


Children will have the chance to explore fire trucks, police cars, and other city vehicles up close, providing an educational and interactive experience.

Beer Garden:

Adults can unwind in a relaxed setting and enjoy a selection of refreshing beers, raising a toast to community spirit.

Get Involved

The festival is still welcoming vendors and parade participants eager to contribute to this vibrant community event. Those interested in showcasing their wares or joining the parade can apply through the festival's website.

As Pasco prepares to paint the town with colors and culture, residents and visitors alike are eagerly anticipating a weekend of festivities that will unite the community in celebration and solidarity.

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