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Cinco de Mayo celebration
Via Wikimedia Commons

Cinco de Mayo: where to celebrate in Austin

Fiestas all weekend

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Cinco de Mayo celebration
| Via Wikimedia Commons

Note: This article was published in May of 2016 and has been updated since then.

Cinco de Mayo is an annual celebration, held on its namesake day or thereabouts, that commemorates the Mexican Army's victory over French forces at the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862.

Diez y Seis (September 16), celebrating Mexico’s independence from Spain, is a much bigger holiday in Mexico, but in the United States, Cinco is the more prominent of the two. Here, Cinco de Mayo has come to be a celebration of Mexican-American culture, with the military commemoration only a small part of events that include music, dancing, food, drink, car shows, movies, picnics, and more—all to shine a light on the significant influences of Mexico and its cultures.

Cinco de Mayo falls on Sunday this year, so celebrations will be all weekend long. We’ve rounded up a few of them below. Eater Austin, our sister site, has the lowdown on food-and-drink-related events (which are many). Feliz Cinco de Mayo!

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1. Mohawk Austin

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912 Red River St
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 666-0877
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It’s hard to beat celebrating Cinco de Mayo with Austin Selena tribute band Bidi Bidi Banda, and having self-described “contemporary synth-cumbia quartet” Como Las Movie on the bill doesn’t hurt. Cynthia Lee Fontaine of RuPaul’s Drag Race (and Austin!) fame will host the all-ages event, which starts at 6:30 p.m. Sunday.

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2. Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival at Stubb’s

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801 Red River St
Austin, TX
(512) 480-8341
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The Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival celebrates the accordion-driven music that has deep roots in the Texas-Mexico border. This year, it will be at the Barn (6218 Brodie Lane) on Friday, May 3, starting at 7 p.m., and Saturday, May 4, starting at 2 p.m. On Sunday, May 5, starting at 2 p.m., it will return to its traditional location at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater (801 Red River Street). The festival is free and all-ages.

3. Grandma Steven’’s Drag Brunch at Micheladas Cafe y Cantina

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333 E 2nd St
Austin, TX 78701
(512) 320-0300
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Kind Clinic and Grandma Steven will host a cumbia party and drag brunch featuring DJ Chorizo Funk, an all Latinx cast of queens, and a women-of-color mercado. The event will also celebrate the launch of the clinic’s new mobile testing services and its “Viva Bien Con PrEP” Spanish Latinx campaign.

4. Inspired Movement Latin Dance Boat Party

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2311 S Congress Ave
Austin, TX 78704
(512) 920-2182
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Inspired Movement studio will hold its sixth annual Latin Dance Boat Party featuring Salsa, Bachata, Kizomba, and Zouk on Saturday, May 4, 2:30 p.m.-7 p.m.. Tickets, which cost $60-$75, include a four-hour Bachata Boot Camp.

5. The Barn Bar and Food Court

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6218 Brodie Ln
Austin, TX 78745
(512) 694-1664
Visit Website

The Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival celebrates the accordion-driven music that has deep roots in the Texas-Mexico border. This year, it will be at the Barn (6218 Brodie Lane) on Friday, May 3, starting at 7 p.m., and Saturday, May 4, starting at 2 p.m. On Sunday, May 5, starting at 2 p.m., it will return to its traditional location at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater (801 Red River Street). The festival is free and all-ages.

6. Conjunto Los Pinkys at St. Elmo Brewing Company

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440 E St Elmo Rd G-2
Austin, TX 78745
(737) 300-1965
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The absence of Austin’s traditional Fiesta de Cinco de Mayo at Fiesta Gardens this year means many musical artists that would be playing there are now gigging in clubs all over town for the holiday. It’s hard to imagine a Cinco de Mayo without performances by the legendary Conjunto Los Pinkys; luckily, they’re performing Sunday 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

7. ‘Three Amigos’ Quote-along at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Slaughter Lane

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5701 W Slaughter Ln
Austin, TX 78749
(512) 861-7060
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The connection between the classic 1980s farce (directed by John Landis, co-written by Lorne Michaels, and starring Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Chevy Chase) and Cinco de Mayo is tenuous at best, but the holiday’s crossover nature is reason enough. There will be tacos, special cocktails, and film-appropriate props—though patrons might be asked to move any view-blocking sombreros before the movie starts.

1. Mohawk Austin

912 Red River St, Austin, TX 78701

It’s hard to beat celebrating Cinco de Mayo with Austin Selena tribute band Bidi Bidi Banda, and having self-described “contemporary synth-cumbia quartet” Como Las Movie on the bill doesn’t hurt. Cynthia Lee Fontaine of RuPaul’s Drag Race (and Austin!) fame will host the all-ages event, which starts at 6:30 p.m. Sunday.

912 Red River St
Austin, TX 78701

2. Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival at Stubb’s

801 Red River St, Austin, TX

The Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival celebrates the accordion-driven music that has deep roots in the Texas-Mexico border. This year, it will be at the Barn (6218 Brodie Lane) on Friday, May 3, starting at 7 p.m., and Saturday, May 4, starting at 2 p.m. On Sunday, May 5, starting at 2 p.m., it will return to its traditional location at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater (801 Red River Street). The festival is free and all-ages.

801 Red River St
Austin, TX

3. Grandma Steven’’s Drag Brunch at Micheladas Cafe y Cantina

333 E 2nd St, Austin, TX 78701

Kind Clinic and Grandma Steven will host a cumbia party and drag brunch featuring DJ Chorizo Funk, an all Latinx cast of queens, and a women-of-color mercado. The event will also celebrate the launch of the clinic’s new mobile testing services and its “Viva Bien Con PrEP” Spanish Latinx campaign.

333 E 2nd St
Austin, TX 78701

4. Inspired Movement Latin Dance Boat Party

2311 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX 78704

Inspired Movement studio will hold its sixth annual Latin Dance Boat Party featuring Salsa, Bachata, Kizomba, and Zouk on Saturday, May 4, 2:30 p.m.-7 p.m.. Tickets, which cost $60-$75, include a four-hour Bachata Boot Camp.

2311 S Congress Ave
Austin, TX 78704

5. The Barn Bar and Food Court

6218 Brodie Ln, Austin, TX 78745

The Rancho Alegre Conjunto Festival celebrates the accordion-driven music that has deep roots in the Texas-Mexico border. This year, it will be at the Barn (6218 Brodie Lane) on Friday, May 3, starting at 7 p.m., and Saturday, May 4, starting at 2 p.m. On Sunday, May 5, starting at 2 p.m., it will return to its traditional location at Stubb’s Waller Creek Amphitheater (801 Red River Street). The festival is free and all-ages.

6218 Brodie Ln
Austin, TX 78745

6. Conjunto Los Pinkys at St. Elmo Brewing Company

440 E St Elmo Rd G-2, Austin, TX 78745

The absence of Austin’s traditional Fiesta de Cinco de Mayo at Fiesta Gardens this year means many musical artists that would be playing there are now gigging in clubs all over town for the holiday. It’s hard to imagine a Cinco de Mayo without performances by the legendary Conjunto Los Pinkys; luckily, they’re performing Sunday 12:30 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.

440 E St Elmo Rd G-2
Austin, TX 78745

7. ‘Three Amigos’ Quote-along at Alamo Drafthouse Cinema Slaughter Lane

5701 W Slaughter Ln, Austin, TX 78749

The connection between the classic 1980s farce (directed by John Landis, co-written by Lorne Michaels, and starring Steve Martin, Martin Short, and Chevy Chase) and Cinco de Mayo is tenuous at best, but the holiday’s crossover nature is reason enough. There will be tacos, special cocktails, and film-appropriate props—though patrons might be asked to move any view-blocking sombreros before the movie starts.

5701 W Slaughter Ln
Austin, TX 78749