Dieciséis de Septiembre

In the United States, Independence Day is celebrated on July 4th because that is when Thomas Jefferson drafted a historic document to gain our Independence from Great Britain. In Mexico, May 5th has evolved with cultural celebrations leading us to think that their Independence was on this day. Although, “Cinco de Mayo” was the day the Mexican army declared victory over France at the Battle of Puebla, not Independence Day.

On September 16th 1810, a parish priest from Dolores, Miguel Hidalgo, called upon his parishioners to fight for their Independence. Today, every year on September 15th at midnight, people gather around in big crowds all over the country and give out “El Grito”, or shout, of “¡Viva Mexico!” to commemorate another year of Mexico’s Independence. Most of all, this shout reminds the people from Mexico of those who died for Mexico’s freedom.

“Every year my family and I cross the border to Mexico on September 15th to give out “El Grito”, the streets get flooded with people gathering and you can see red white and green all over the streets. It truly is something amazing, people of all ages are joined together, from month old babies to 90 year olds.” said Denis, 25.

No matter the age groups, people make plans to celebrate their country’s Independence. Even though some people only go for the parties and screaming, others are on the other side of the scale cherishing every moment of it.

“My first baby was born on September 10th 3 years ago and we still took him with us to Mexico as a 5 day old baby to celebrate with us, even though we had to be from afar instead of being inside the crowds. We don’t go for the screaming or the party, we go because it is a wonderful thing to see so many people caring for our beautiful Mexico and its history” said Gaby, 28.

“It is so much fun, I have never been to actual Mexico to celebrate Mexico’s Independence, but my family is Hispanic and we celebrate it here, in the United States. We throw a big party at my house filled with decorations and Hispanic music, we even hire mariachis to play at our party, it is a wonderful celebration to be able to celebrate another year of your country’s freedom” says Emily, 19.

Nowadays, both the 15th and 16th of September are celebrated to commemorate Mexico’s Independence. Similar to the 4th of July, the United States’ Independence Day, Mexico’s Independence Day is celebrated with festivities including dancing, fireworks, parades, and performances. Get your sombreros out and celebrate Mexico’s Independence. ¡Viva Mexico!

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