Cinco de Mayo for white people!

I know, I know!  It’s now May 19th.  So, what am I doing posting about the 5th of May?  Easy answer—Been to darn busy trying to keep up with the arrival of spring.  Grass to cut, plants to plant, trees to trim, trim to paint and all of this being done in one of the wettest springs we have had.  Three days with 3″ of rain and now we are expecting another 3″ by Sunday.  Even had to build a fire to take the chill off today.  So, let’s get started.

"Throngs" line the street for the party!

First off, way up here in Montana, it’s pronounced Sinka d May-O, like the first part of everyone’s favorite sandwich spread–MAYO-naize.  And just so’s ya don’t get the wrong idea, we do have resident Mexicans (legal and illegal) in the Magic City.  Many families have been here since the early 1900’s.  Railroad work, agriculture and oil field jobs lured them.  Best I can tell is that they comprise about 3% to 5% of the total city population of 106,000.   The holiday is a big deal for the bars but not so much elsewhere.  We drove down to Billings to go to two celebrations just to see what the heck was going on

Not quite sure why the folks from the fitness center were here. Oh yeah, it's because ZUMBA music sounds like it might be Mexican.

Four dollar Margaritas.

Just some folks waiting for the action to start.

Puerco tacos and enchiladas.

Sponsor of this event. They are a pretty darn good place to eat and always busy.

Well, that’s the first celebration.  To be honest, we were there early and it was supposed to last until 8 or 9pm.  They had salsa lessons planned, real Hispanic musicians, and other demonstrations throughout the day and evening.

Now, on to the parking lot of the State Avenue IGA parking lot for number dos on the south side of Billings.

Food and games.

The big beige truck is owned by the Torres family and they also have a permanent location.  Good, good, good, food and I intend to blog about the restaurant soon because they have a very interesting stone garden outside.

Some of the community booths.

I missed getting a picture of the menudo stand (yes, they had one) because I got distracted by the line up of custom cars.  I mean, what’s a celebration without hot rods???

Rat Rod--Note bug on grill. Inside of the truck was absolutely gorgeous. So don't judge a book or car by its cover.

The one I wished I owned!!!!!!

These are the last two I will make you look at.

Even though the crowds were small, we had a fun day.  The IGA celebration has been going on for at least 20 years.  Afterward we ate lunch at Mamacita’s.  A Billings institution for over 40 years.  Poor Mamacita, she tried to retire twice and get out of the restaurant biz but each time she got bored and reopened in a different location.  Sorry, the place was way too busy for picture-taking.

And, not like we needed it, but the day did provide us with a fine excuse to drink some might fine margaritas after we got home.  We’ve settled on a 3-2-1 mixture that suits us fine.  3 parts tequila, 2 parts triple sec and 1 part key lime juice.  Sip–don’t gulp!!!!!!

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2 Responses to Cinco de Mayo for white people!

  1. Kathi says:

    Nice to read about Mexico tradtitons being Americanized in Montana.
    You have to come to Mexico……and have real Menudo and tamalies .

  2. Barbara says:

    oddly enough, we too here in mexico have like nobody at cinco de mayo festivities….except for gringos who mistakenly think it’s mexican independence day!

    big cinco de mayo celebrations NOB seem to have been dreamed up by beer companies….and there’s nothing wrong with that! as far as i’m concerned, any holiday that is primarily celebrated by the intake of alcoholic beverages is okay in my book!

    and, freakily, there seem to be more mexicans in billings, montana than there were in my entire pueblo of san cristobal zapotitlan!

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