Dancers at Cinco de Mayo Fiesta, Portland, Oregon, circa 1994
- Cinco de Mayo is celebrated to commemorate the Mexican Army's victory over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla, on May 5, 1862. The year 2020 marked the 36th annual Cinco de Mayo Fiesta in Portland; it is the largest multicultural festival in the state of Oregon. The Fiesta features performances and art, food and drinks, and activities for the whole family. Festivities include mariachi music and baile folklórico. Mariachi music is a genre of Mexican music dating back to the 18th century played by a band. The bands typically consist of violins, trumpets, and guitars, including a guitar-like string instrument called a Mexican vihuela, as well as an acoustic bass guitar called a guitarrón. All players take turns singing lead and singing backup vocals. Baile folklórico is a collective term for traditional Mexican dances that emphasize local folk culture with ballet characteristics. Each region in Mexico is known for a handful of locally characteristic dances.
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