DETROIT — On Sunday, May 5, the 55th annual Cinco de Mayo Parade kicked off at noon in the southwest of Detroit, beginning at West Vernor and Central Avenue for a celebration of Mexican culture.
Hosted by the Mexican Patriotic Committee of Metro Detroit, a crowd of thousands of people stood on the sidewalks along Vernor and watched the parade.
The parade was led by the Detroit Police Department Equestrian Squad, horses and the Western International High School ROTC; it featured more than 50 local organizations, nonprofits and businesses.
This year’s grand marshal for the parade was Lydia Gutierrez, owner of Hacienda Mexican Foods.
The red, white and green flag of Mexico was prominently displayed throughout the parade. It included a display of Mexican music, dance performances and more.
The parade also featured the first African American group to ever perform in the Parade, the Falcons Drum and Bugle Corps.
Cinco de Mayo is an annual celebration to commemorate the Mexican Army’s victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, also known as the Franco-Mexican War.
On May 5, 1862, the Mexican Army, which was led by General Ignacio Zaragoza, overcame a larger French army during the battle.
Cinco de Mayo has evolved into a commemoration of Mexican culture and heritage, especially in areas with large Mexican American populations. These days, the cheerfulness tends towards music, art, delicious meals, partying and a parade.