Cinco de Summer | Jackson Free Press | Jackson, MS

Cinco de Summer

Kick off summer this Cinco de Mayo weekend with local food and handcrafted drinks.

Kick off summer this Cinco de Mayo weekend with local food and handcrafted drinks. Photo by Courtesy Flickr/neil_conway

For many people, Cinco de Mayo is the real kickoff to summer. The afternoons are already approaching 80 degrees, the shorts and tanks come out, and the idea of day-drinking sweet and salty beverages is never more welcome. Bring on the season with local margaritas and Mexican fare May 4 and 5.

The first Cinco de Mayo Mississippi Festival kicks things off Saturday, May 4, from noon to 11 p.m. The festival, held in downtown Jackson between Capitol and Congress streets, includes a parade, live music all day, multiple food vendors and dancing. La Reina (the Queen) de Cinco de Mayo Mississippi will be crowned as well. Tickets are $10 in advance at ticketmaster.com, $15 at the door or $10 ages 6-11. Kids 5 and under are free.

All weekend long, Sombra Mexican Kitchen (Township at Colony Park, 1037 Highland Colony Parkway, Suite 100, Ridgeland, 601-707-7950) hosts a Cinco de Mayo celebration. On Saturday, May 4, younger folks can enjoy pinatas and face painting from 1-4 p.m., and Jason Turner takes the stage from 5-9 p.m. On Sunday, John Mora performs from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Sombra offers drink specials Friday, Saturday and Sunday.

Mellow Mushroom pizzeria (275 Dogwood Blvd., Flowood, 601,992-7499) is throwing a Cinco de Mellow contest with a trip for two to Mexico as the grand prize. Visit cincodemellow.com to find out how to enter.

Other restaurants serving up Cinco de Mayo tacos and tequila (and more) around the metro include Babalu Tacos and Tapas (622 Duling Ave., 601-366-5757), Jaco's Tacos (318 S State St., 601-961-7001), Cafe Ole (2752 N. State St., 769-524-3627), La Cazuela Mexican Grill (1401 E. Fortification St., 601-353-3014), Papitos Mexican Restaurant (6376 Ridgewood Court Drive, 601-665-4632), El Charro Authentic Mexican Restaurant (2086 Lakeland Drive, 601-362-4447), Taqueria La Guadalupe (6537 Old Canton Road, Ridgeland, 601-206-7776), and Margaritas Mexican Restaurant (1625 E. County Line Road, Suite 120, 601-957-7672).

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