In honor of Cinco de Mayo's 150th anniversary, owner Tina Avila is hosting Dunedin's 20th annual Cinco de Mayo party on Saturday, complete with Mariachi bands, tequila stands and plenty of excellent food.
The event runs from 4-11 p.m. at the restaurant and in the parking lot across the street. Main Street will be closed from Douglas Avenue to the Pinellas Trail to accommodate the festivities, so plan accordingly.
Here's what to know if you go:
1) Cost: Admission is free, and prices vary for food and drink
2) Parking/transportation: Parking is available at any of the free lots in and around the downtown area, but keep in mind that Main Street will be closed off between Douglas Avenue and the Pinellas Trail.
3) About the event:
- Singing: Three musical acts will play during the event: Latin jazz band La Lucha, Mariachi singer Lily Cortez, and 10-piece Mariachi band Ortesta Infinidad.
- Dancing: There will be free salsa lessons given during what Avila calls "the biggest salsa dance party in the Tampa Bay area. Even if you don't dance, you do."
- Contests: Prizes will be awarded for the best Latin icon costumes, with winners receiving items from various downtown merchants. There will also be a bicycle raffle.
- Eating and drinking: In addition to the meals and drinks available at Casa Tina, there will be beer vendors, margarita stands and a tequila tent.
4) Do NOT bring: Coolers or pets.
5) Little-known fact: Cinco de Mayo is not the Mexican Independence Day, but a celebration of the country's victory over French forces during the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Mexico's Independence Day is celebrated Sept. 16.