De ISD to Host 2024 Cinco de Mayo Celebration

DeSoto ISD to Host 2024 Cinco De Mayo Cultural Celebration
Posted on 04/16/2024
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DeSoto Independent School District’s Emergent Bilingual and Languages Other Than English program will host a night of performances dedicated to sharing cultural awareness and exposure through performances related to the observance of Cinco de Mayo from 6-8 pm on Thursday, May 2, 2024, at DeSoto High School’s Nickels Auditorium.

The free event is an opportunity to celebrate diversity and honor traditions associated with Hispanic or Spanish-speaking students of Mexican heritage. The program will feature choral songs, dance, and poetic and historical readings performed by students which are reflective of Spanish culture and Cinco de Mayo. 

The first iteration of this program took place last year, during the 2021-2022 academic year, and was held at Cockrell Hill Elementary and Frank Moates Elementary. This year’s event will include performances from students in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade featuring dance, readings and other such performance activities.

About Cinco de Mayo

Cinco de Mayo (pronounced  [ˈsiŋko ðe ˈmaʝo] in Mexico, Spanish for "Fifth of May") is a yearly celebration held on May 5, which commemorates the anniversary of Mexico's victory over the Second French Empire at the Battle of Puebla in 1862, led by General Ignacio Zaragoza, a native Texan since Coahulil was part of Mexico. The victory over the French army was a morale boost for the Mexicans. Zaragoza died months after the battle from an illness, and a larger French force ultimately defeated the Mexican army at the Second Battle of Puebla and occupied Mexico City. At the opening of the French chambers in January 1866, Napoleon III announced that he would withdraw French troops from Mexico. In reply to a French request for American neutrality, the American Secretary of State William H. Seward replied that French withdrawal from Mexico should be unconditional.

Cinco de Mayo has become associated with the celebration of Mexican-American culture. Celebrations began in California, where they have been observed annually since 1863. The day gained nationwide popularity beyond those of Mexican-American heritage in the 1980s due to advertising campaigns by beer, wine, and tequila companies; today, Cinco de Mayo generates beer sales on par with the Super Bowl. In Mexico, the commemoration of the battle continues to be mostly ceremonial, such as through military parades or battle reenactments. The city of Puebla marks the event with various festivals and reenactments of the battle.

Cinco de Mayo is sometimes mistaken for Mexico's Independence Day—the most important national holiday in Mexico—which is celebrated on September 16, commemorating the Cry of Dolores in 1810, which initiated the war for Mexican independence from Spain. Cinco de Mayo has been referenced and featured in entertainment media and has become an increasingly global celebration of Mexican culture, cuisine, and heritage.

This year’s DeSoto ISD Cinco de Mayo celebration will include translation services for attendees who may need such support. For more information regarding the May 2, 2024, DeSoto ISD Cinco de Mayo Celebration, direct an email to DeSoto ISD Director of EB and LOTE Helena Castañón-Vargas, Ed.D. at [email protected] or call 972-223-666 xt. 8298.