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Cinco de Mayo Luncheon

Friday, May 05, 2023

11:00 AM - 01:00 PM

Thompson Hotel

506 San Jacinto Blvd, Austin, Texas 78701, USA

The Cinco de Mayo Luncheon will gather downtown businesses and stakeholders to celebrate, promote and learn about the Mexic-Arte Museum, the Cinco de Mayo historic event, and the 5th Street Mexican American Heritage Corridor and District. Join us as we celebrate thirty-seven years in Austin with critically acclaimed exhibitions, an expanding art collection, exemplary education programs, exciting cultural events, and a growing permanent collection. 

Date: Friday, May 5, 2023

Time: 11:00 am – 1:00 pm

Place: Thompson Hotel, 506 San Jancinto Blvd., Austin, Texas, 78701

Guest Speakers: Dr. Jesús F. de la Teja – The Meaning and Significance of Cinco de Mayo & Dr. Cynthia E. Orozco – The History of Mexican Americans in Austin

Attire: Business and/or Fiesta Attire

Music: Mariachis

Silent Action: Artwork and more!

Tickets: $175

The Mexic-Arte Museum is dedicated to enriching the community through education programs, exhibitions, and the collection, preservation, and interpretation of Mexican, Latinx, and Latin American art and culture for visitors of all ages. Since its inception in 1984, Mexic-Arte Museum has been one of few Mexican and Mexican American art museums in the US. In 2003, the 78th Legislature designated Mexic Arte as The Official Mexican and Mexican American Fine Art Museum of Texas. The Museum is a major part of the fabric of downtown Austin, and thousands of diverse families enjoy annual cultural events, renowned exhibitions, and exciting programming. In fall 2016, then First Lady Michelle Obama presented the Museum and its educational staff with the President’s Committee on the Arts and the Humanities Award. In conjunction with the Austin History Center, Mexic-Arte developed an interactive exhibition and map, titled Austin’s Mexico: A Forgotten Neighborhood, aimed at uncovering the history of some of the earliest Mexican settlers in the city. In 2018, Austin voters approved a $20 million bond to improve the Museum, managed by the City of Austin Public Works Department. Architects from El Paso and Austin are working with Mexic-Arte on the Schematic Phase of the Museum Building Project.

Cultural Heritage District Designation – Mexic-Arte Museum and stakeholders, including the Downtown Austin Alliance, are working to earn a Cultural Heritage District Designation for the 5th Street Mexican American Heritage Corridor. The District is defined by the geographic anchors of Republic Park on West 5th Street and Plaza Saltillo on East 5th Street. The area is full of and surrounded by significant historic, cultural, heritage, and community sites, deserving of both preservation and active use. Cultural District status will preserve, develop, and highlight all the cultural assets and businesses along and around 5th Street Cultural Heritage District Designation will transform this downtown area into a beautiful and educational destination for tourists and the Austin community.

Cinco de Mayo: Honoring Our Mexican, French, and American Heritage – In 1886, Lino Torres and Emile Tarratasplanned a Cinco de Mayo celebration in downtown Austin, likely at what is today Republic Square. Cinco de Mayo means 5th of May. It is a day and holiday that commemorates a single victorious battle by Mexico over France, though not independence from France or Spain; Mexico won its independence from Spain in 1821. In the 1860s, Mexico was still not free of foreign debt and foreign control. In the midst of the American Civil War, France saw an opportunity to take over Mexico. Mexico owed France, England, and Spain money, and President Benito Juarez had suspended payment. France then sent 2,500 troops to occupy Mexico. Civilians and soldiers joined their leader General Ignacio Zaragosa, born in what is now Goliad, Texas. Mexico won the battle at Puebla, a town near Mexico City, on May 5, 1862, but they ultimately lost the war to France. France made Archduke Ferdinand Maximilian of Austria emperor of Mexico. He ruled over Mexico until 1867, at which point France could no longer retain control under the combined pressure of Mexico and the United States. Cinco de Mayo is now a day Mexicans and Americans today celebrate annually because of what it represents to Mexico.

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