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Scottsbluff getting ready for Cinco de Mayo party
April 15, 2016 Jerry Purvis   

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Gering Citizen file photo Los Guadalupanos dancers Jackie Martinez (center) and Dymitri Morales ride on the group’s float during the Cinco de Mayo parade along East Overland in 2013. This year’s parade is scheduled for May 7, and will begin at 10 a.m. at 19th Ave. and East Overland in Scottsbluff.

The East Overland community in Scottsbluff will come alive on Saturday, May 7, to help celebrate the community’s ethnic heritage at the annual Cinco de Mayo Parade.

Parade Chairwoman Julie Mason said the parade starts at 10 a.m. at 19th Avenue and East Overland, heading down Overland through the southeast Scottsbluff community, and finishing at about 3rd Avenue. Parade entries are scheduled to start lining up at about 9:15 a.m.

“We’re hoping Gov. Ricketts will be able to participate this year,” Mason said. “His office has contacted us, but we’re still waiting for confirmation.”

People from throughout the community are invited to participate in the event. Past parades have included high school students from their schools’ Spanish Clubs; several vehicles including low riders and motorcycles; and veterans’ groups. In the past, horse riders dressed in traditional Mexican “cowboy” attire were a parade favorite.

In past years, the local Cinco de Mayo parade has included some 50 vehicles and from 100 to 200 people participating.

The parade always starts off with the honor guard from the American Legion, and colors from the local Knights of Columbus. The Grand Marshal, who has not been identified yet, and a float carrying the Cinco de Mayo royalty, follow.

After the parade, the community is welcome to take part in festivities from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. at the Guadalupe Center, on 1200 East 9th Street.

There will be food vendors, live music and entertainment and craft vendors. During the festivities, Scottsbluff Mayor Randy Meininger will present a Key to the City to the Parade Grand Marshal.

In the United States, Cinco de Mayo is sometimes mistaken for Mexico’s Independence Day. Mexico’s independence from Spain is celebrated on Sept. 16. Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army’s unlikely victory over French forces in the Battle of Puebla on May 5, 1862. Leading the Mexican army was General Ignacio Zaragoza Seguin.
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