Fiestas Patrias (Patriotic Festivals)

During the 15th and 16th days of September to commemorate Mexican Independence Day, my parents’ hometown throws a festival. Like in other festivals, they hold a competition to elect a “queen of the festival” as well as tournaments with horse races and even rooster fights. Parades also occur about the town where children and students partake in them. Well known bandas (bands) are invited to perform in the town square so that many people would want to go and dance along. Bailes folkloricos (folkloric dances) also take place with competitions between different dances from different states competing to win. Overall, people gather to dance and celebrate their nation with others.

My mom recalled these types of celebrations as a young woman when she and her family would go and see the bands and the dances. She mentioned that a these are typical traditions of small towns in Mexico. Usually local and involving song and dance with a number of competitive events.

I myself have never gotten to see these type of celebrations but my mom mentioned how they were the festival mostly centered in national pride and identity more so than others. These celebrations seemed more unique as they weren’t heavily tied to religious occasions. As the name implies, they were very patriotic and traces of these festivals are seen here in the U.S. when on these days, people drive their cars with Mexican flags waving in the back.