What does Cinco de Mayo really mean?

By: Jorge Lopez Email
By: Jorge Lopez Email

News 12 at 6 o'clock / Sunday, May 5, 2013

NORTH AUGUSTA, S.C. (WRDW) -- Lorena Acosta works at a local Mexican restaurant, and even though it's lunchtime, she isn't serving anyone.

Acosta says Cinco de Mayo is celebrated more by Americans than Mexicans for one reason.

"Well you forget about all that when you get here. A lot of Mexicans forget the tradition," Acosta said.

She says the holiday celebrates the Battle of Puebla when the Mexicans won against the French, but in America, it's taken on a new meaning.

"I say it's about drinking here," Acosta said.

So, while no one is drinking at Acosta's restaurant, they are drinking at Monterey's in North Augusta.

Christian Ditty says he's been celebrating Cinco de Mayo for years, but he can't disagree with Acosta on the meaning of the celebration here.

"In America, it's more just of a party. We are not really celebrating it," Ditty said.

And while the food, chips and beer are flowing at Monterey's -- down the the street at a Mexican grocery store, business is slow.

Maira Acosta was born in Mexico but raised in the U.S. She says combining both cultures would be her solution to finding a common ground and hopefully bring more folks to the store she works at.

"It would be very traditional but also with American style," she said.

She says she would keep the American tradition of the drinks but add things she grew up with like dancing and music.

And as for Ditty, he says he will continue his way of celebrating Cinco de Mayo.

"La comida es muy buena," he said.

Which is Spanish for the "food is good," and good food always makes people come together.

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