Contrary to what many believe, Cinco de Mayo is not a celebration of Mexican independence, and it is not the biggest holiday in Mexico. Instead, September 16th marks the holiday on which Mexicans honor their day of independence.
The Mexican Independence Day is referred to as “El Grito de la Independencia” in Spanish, which translates to “The Cry of Independence.” It was named for the cry of a Roman Catholic priest named Father Miguel Hidalgo who led the revolt from Spain. The people of Spain desired to gain the privilege of free speech and wished to have a government that represented them. Father Hidalgo led a rally against the Spanish government, but the government found out and ordered to have him arrested. The night that Hidalgo was charged to be arrested (the evening before independence was won), Father Hidalgo called his congregation together in Dolores, Mexico and cried out an impassioned speech, now referred to as “Grito de Dolores.”
15 de Septiembre
Mexican Independence Day is one of the biggest holidays in Mexico, even more highly celebrated than Cinco de Mayo. Festivities begin on the eve of El Grito de la Independencia, where crowds of people gather together in designated town meeting places around eleven o’clock. In Mexico City, the President rings the historic liberty bell originally rung by Father Hidalgo and he repeats the Grito de Dolores speech. In other towns, the mayor rings a bell and follows the same practice. Then the crowd erupts in the singing of the national anthem and upon them rains a shower of confetti and streamers. The colors of the Mexican flag are seen everywhere. “Viva Mexico” and “Viva la independencia” is shouted in remembrance of this momentous day.
Mexican Independence Day
Then on the actual anniversary of the Mexican Independence Day, September 16th, the Mexican people celebrate with plenty of delicious food, parades, and entertainment. This is the biggest fiesta of the year, so it attracts many tourists as well as the merriment of the Mexican people.
On the Mexican Independence Day, a wide variety of tasty food is consumed. The traditional El Grito de la Independencia dish is chiles en nogada, which is a meal made from stuffed poblano peppers doused in a walnut sauce. It is known for Mexican Independence Day because it involves the colors of the Mexican flag. The peppers are green, the sauce is white, and the pomegranate seeds sprinkled on top are red.
Here at Acapulcos Mexican Family Restaurant and Cantina, we love celebrating Mexican Independence Day because it is our biggest holiday of the year. We invite you to join us on September 16th to celebrate this Mexican fiesta with us. You may even feel like you have been transported to Mexico, since our food is made the authentic way and we have a welcoming atmosphere. We’d love you to visit us at one of our 12 locations throughout Massachusetts and Connecticut!
Have you ever been to a Mexican Independence Day celebration before?