Tomorrow is Cinco de Mayo, and most people celebrate without knowing what they're actually celebrating.  So here are five things you didn't know about Cinco de Mayo, courtesy of

#1.)  It's Not Mexican Independence Day.  Mexican Independence Day, or "Grito de Dolores," is celebrated on September 16, and it commemorates the day in 1810 when a Catholic priest declared war on Spain.

#2.)  It Celebrates a Victory Over France.  Mexico had been invaded by Spain, France, and Great Britain in late 1861, but within 6 months Spain and Britain had pulled out so the French decided to take advantage of the chaos from the U.S. Civil Rights war and invade Mexico. The French hadn't been beaten in 50 years, but on May 5, 1862, the Mexicans won the Battle of Puebla.  The French eventually took the country over a year later, but Cinco de Mayo celebrates the first battle.

#3.)  It's More Popular in the U.S. Than It Is in Mexico.  It's not a national holiday In Mexico, and it's mostly celebrated by people near the city of Puebla, which is in the southeastern part of the country.  It only became popular in the U.S. in the 50's and 60's, partly because of FDR's 'Good Neighbor' policy of strengthening our ties with Latin America.

#4.)  It's Also Popular in . . . Malta?  Malta's an island nation in the Mediterranean Sea, just below Italy, and Cinco de Mayo is popular there too because people in Malta love Corona.

#5.)  They Celebrate in Chandler, Arizona by Racing Chihuahuas.  There's no real reason behind it.  Other than the obvious reason that it's AWESOME.


Photo By: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images
Photo By: Kevork Djansezian/Getty Images