The month of May is chockablock with official and traditional holiday dates, although the Covid pandemic is likely to curtail some customary observations.
Saturday, May 1: Dia del Trabajo (Labor Day), originating from the 1886 Chicago workers’ strike, is an official paid holiday for Mexican employees. Workers’ unions in many places usually hold marches and rallies. Though falling on a Saturday in 2021, government offices and banking normally close on this date.
Monday, May 3: Día de la Santa Cruz (Day of the Holy Cross) is an important celebration among the faithful and a really a big deal for construction workers who hoist colorful crosses at the peak of building sites where they gather for parties and blast off scores of ear-splitting sky rockets. Processions to spots where permanent crosses stand are common at lakeside. Ajijic is known for doorstep altar displays laden with pantry goods, free for taking by anyone willing to replace the bounty the following year.
Wednesday, May 5: Commemoration of the Battle of Puebla, remembering Mexico’s defeat of the French army at the city of Puebla (1862), is marked nationwide with civic ceremonies and colorful Cinco de Mayo festivities held in most U.S. Latino communities.
Monday, May 10: Mexican families celebrate Día de las Madres (Mother’s Day) always on this date. Though neither a civic nor a religious holiday, it is probably the nation’s most widely celebrated festivity. Mexican moms are honored with pre-dawn serenades, floral bouquets, personal gifts and family feasts. This year, Jalisco authorities are banning visits to cemeteries to honor deceased matriarchs.
Saturday, May 15: On Dia del Maestro (Teacher’s Day), students, parents, educational institutions and government officials recognize teaching professionals with gifts, public ceremonies and parties.
Sunday, May 23: Dia del Estudiante (Student’s Day), a commemoration instigated by University of Guadalajara student organizations, is usually celebrated in upper level Jalisco schools with a day off from classes, parties, excursions or other special activities.