Best Cinco de Mayo Parties In The DC Area

April 26, 2012 6:00 AM

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Contrary to popular belief, Cinco de Mayo is a time to commemorate the Battle of Puebla and not the Mexican Independence Day, which occurs in September. Still, it’s an important event in Mexico’s history and besides, who doesn’t want another reason to celebrate? Especially when it involves tequila. Visit one of these DC area hotspots and celebrate Mexican history, heritage and Cinco de Mayo with delicious Mexican food, drinks, music and dancing.
nightlife music cinco de mayo festival Best Cinco de Mayo Parties In The DC Area

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National Cinco de Mayo Festival
Sylvan Theater at the base of the Washington Monument
Madison Dr. and 15th St. NW.
Washington, DC 20001

Price: Free
Date: May 5th, 12 p.m. to 6 p.m. rain or shine

On May 5, everyone is Latino, or so says the slogan of this year’s National Cinco de Mayo Festival. Held at the base of the Washington Monument, this family-friendly festival includes dance performances, live music, delicious Latin dishes and even a Mexican market. The fiesta continues in the children’s pavilion where the little ones can make pinatas and dancing puppets, play Mexican bingo for a chance to win prizes and participate in fun workshops. Organized by the Maru Montero Dance Company, the festival is said to celebrate not only Mexicans and their heritage but all Latinos in our country.

Related: Celebrate Cinco de Mayo in DC

116468408 Best Cinco de Mayo Parties In The DC Area

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The Salsa Room
2619 Columbia Pike
Arlington, VA 22204
(703) 685-0790

Price: $5 to $15
Hours: Varies by clases

If you’ve ever wanted to learn the art of Latin dancing, head on over to The Salsa Room in Arlington where classes are offered Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday nights. Formerly known as Cecilia’s, the Salsa Room is part nightclub part restaurant, offering delicious Latin foods including Sopa de Lentejas, Aji de Fiedo and more. The venue is also known to host legendary salsa artists including Marc Anthony, Frankie Ruiz, Tito Rojas and many more. Doors open at 7:30 p.m. and beginner dance classes start at 8 p.m. Learn the moves of this celebrated culture by joining the VIP Club, and enjoy cover charge discounts plus free entry for certain events.

Related: Best Burritos in DC.

nightlife music cinco de mayotown tavern Best Cinco de Mayo Parties In The DC Area

Photo Credit: Town Tavern via Facebook

Town Tavern
2323 18th St NW
Washington, DC 20009
(202) 387-8696

Hours: Mon – 6 p.m. to close, Tues to Fri – 5 p.m. to close, Sat and Sun – 12 p.m. to close

Known for its annual Cinco de Mayo celebrations and crazy gimmicks, Town Tavern offers its guests the chance to have your photo taken with a donkey wearing a sombrero. Post your photo on the Town Tavern Facebook page and you and your friends could win a free happy hour on a future date. Town Tavern features two levels of bars and dance floors plus multiple private party rooms. Enjoy high definition plasma televisions, the best DJs and all-day food and drink specials.

nightlife music cinco de mayo omalleys pub Best Cinco de Mayo Parties In The DC Area

Photo Credit: O'Malley's Pub via Facebook

O’Malley’s Pub
2650 Jefferson Davis Highway
Arlington, VA 22202
(703) 684-7200

Hours: Daily – 4 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Don’t let the name fool you, O’Malley’s celebrates more than just the Irish. Stop in on Cinco de Mayo to see where the action’s happening. The pub will feature additional food and drink specials, and plans to go all out “Mexican-style” at one of the best Cinco de Mayo celebrations in Arlington. Included in the mix is the appropriately-named Cinco Burger for, you guessed it, $5 each. Known for honoring holidays with parties they deserve, the whole weekend surrounding Cinco de Mayo will be full of spirited crowds. Call ahead to learn more, or visit the O’Malley’s Pub website to book your Cinco de Mayo reservation.

Related: Best Sports Bars In The DC Area

nightlife music cinco de mayo clarendon ballroom Best Cinco de Mayo Parties In The DC Area

Photo Credit: Clarendon Ballroom via Facebook

Clarendon Ballroom
3185 Wilson Blvd
Arlington, VA 22201
(703) 469-2244

Hours: Rooftop and ballroom open Thurs and Fri – 5 p.m. to 2 a.m., Rooftop only Wed – 5 p.m. to 12 a.m.

Celebrate Cinco de Mayo with music, dancing, drink specials, party favors and more at the annual Clarendon Ballroom Cinco de Mania Fiesta. Sponsored by HiBall Events, this year’s fiesta features three levels of party space, awesome DJs, live bands, a huge party on the rooftop deck and much more. Don’t forget to wear fiesta-style attire including ponchos, sombreros and fuzzy mustaches.

Susan Diranian is a freelance writer living in Ashburn, VA. She is covering Travel & Outdoors. Her work can be found at

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