DTLA WEEKLY’s Top 10 Picks for Cinco De Mayo Parties

UNO – Cinco De Mayan at Lucha Vavoom!!!

No holds barred, hands down, Lucha Vavoom is DTLAs number one Cinco De Mayo Celebration for the over 21 crowd. Why? Where do we start? How about the line?

What’s that? Why, it’s a convoy of low riders in mint condition. And who’s getting out? Burlesque dancers who will soon be performing inside the madness that is the “sexo y violencio” of Lucha Vavoom.

So you made it in! Awesome, now drink! But don’t get F*cked UP! as per the show’s opening request. And whatever you do, when the bouncers say move, MOVE! Or you may end up with a flying Luchador, who’s just gotten himself thrown out of the ring landing on your lap. This is where La Fiesta meets….a never ending battle between good and evil.

Plenty of crowd participation with seasoned comedic hosts and judges, and chances to shout at the top of your lungs, “Lucha Va-Voom” with your friends and fellow event attendees.

Is that all? NO! But, we can’t give it all away and the show now in its 15th year is always changing. The show runs from May 4th – May 5th at the historic Mayan Theater. 1038 South Hill Street, Los Angeles, CA 90015.

DOS – !Fiesta at FIG@7TH

FIGat7th is back this year to host ¡Fiesta at FIG! for Cinco de Mayo! This local favorite is open to all ages and is where La Fiesta meets shopping with visitors surrounded full 360 by world renown brands, food, and drinks. Celebrate in full fiesta mode with live DJs, a female mariachi band, outdoor bar and make your own piñata workshop. The fiesta happening on May 5th goes from 12pm-9pm in the heart of DTLA.  755 S. Figueroa Street, LA 90017.

TRES – 100 Beers on Tap at LA BIERGARTEN

Downtown LA is making the beer halls of Germany green with envy thanks, LA Biergarten which offers over 100 different beers on draft, and over 40 bottled beer selections every day. This is definitely where La Fiesta meets BEER! To add to the splendor that is beer, there are wall to wall TV’s showing every sports game known to man.  Located on the ground floor of the historic Chapman Building, a 13-story beaux arts building, constructed in 1912, the two level LA Biergarten has enough space to host private events, and enough beer to satisfy over 200 beer geeks. And for Cinco De Mayo, LA Biergarten will be throwing an All-Mexican Theme Party with $5 Tequila Shots, $5 Well Margaritas, Carne Asada Tacos, Michelada, and Mexican Music with their resident DJ. Ole. Mole. 750 South Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90014.

CUATRO – Free Tacos (while they last) at LA CITA BAR

This is where La Fiesta meets pure comedy. Alright, LA Cita Bar, now play fair! You’ve already got the reputation of being a place for finding the most lovable hombre, now you’re going to bring in El Conjunto Nueva Ola for Cinco De Mayo? Chido, Chido, Chido, when this luchador-masked group comes to town, everyone will be dancing and laughing at the same time. We get that, but you’re also throwing in Cazadores drink specials and free tacos at 6pm? Wow, LA Cita Bar – please, don’t hurt em’. 336 Hill St, Los Angeles, CA 90013.

CINCO – Flaming Cinco De Mayo at EL COMPADRE

When in South Park, do as the South Parkians do. And South Parkians do sports and conventions well. Join the team, or visit the convention center but afterward head over to El Compadre’s Cinco De Mayo for flaming margaritas, promo girls and just about every authentic Mexican dish you can think of. This is where La Fiesta meets the Corona bucket and personal beer dispensary. 1248 S Figueroa St #101, Los Angeles, CA 90015.

SIES – 213 HOSPITALITY GROUP: Take your pick!

So what are we up to? Ten, fifteen, twenty bars by now, and a new brewery? With so many new bars brought to DTLA by the 213 Hospitality Group, it’s becoming hard to keep track. One thing is for certain, if you visit any of the twenty-plus establishments this Cinco De Mayo, you’re going to be transported to another time and space, many times to the accompaniment of live bands playing jazz or blues. This is where La Fiesta meets your favorite mixologist, and where you’ll have a good chance of meeting friends worth keeping for a lifetime.  For a complete list of bars to choose from, visit their website.

SIETE – GRAND CENTRAL MARKETw/ dublab

Celebrating its 100th anniversary, Grand Central Market will host its biggest shindig the day after Cinco De Mayo, on May 6th…But so what, because this year’s Cinco De Mayo falls on a Friday and that means dublab will be bringing their sound system and collective DJs to provide the tunes to an already festive atmosphere. This is where La Fiesta meets DTLA’s most historical food hub and funk, soul and world music from 7pm to 10pm. 317 S Broadway, Los Angeles, CA 90013.

OCHO – Live Mariachis at El CHOLO

You gotta love the history behind El Cholo, as founder Alejandro Borquez pushed back from the dinner table and told his wife Rosa her cooking was so good she was going to have to open a restaurant! This tale of two lovers keeps on giving as most of El Cholo’s dishes have been prepared the same way since 1923. Did someone say Tequila? This is where La Fiesta meets your alter ego or your inner Aztec, whichever comes out first. El Cholo tops off the celebration with special priced appetizers and Camerones Rancheros.  1037 S Flower St, Los Angeles, CA 90015.

NUEVE – Happy Hour at BONAVENTURE BREWING COMPANY

If the fates are on our side, Bonaventure Brewing Company will host their annual Cinco De Mayo poolside party at the world famous Bonaventure Hotel. Once the only true downtown Los Angeles brewery they offer taster sets of their award-winning ales on a picturesque outdoor patio with an unsurpassed view of the city skyline. This is where La Fiesta meets the bikini, and where visitors and guests mix and mingle alike to guest Djs and a fist full of chicken tenders. Come for happy hour 3.30pm-6.30pm or plan an extended stay and party all night. 404 S. Figueroa Street, Los Angeles, CA 90071.

DIEZ – OLVERA STREET: Cinco De Mayo Festival y El Hecho in LA at LA PLAZA DE CULTURA Y ARTES

Three days in celebration of Mexico’s 1862 victory over the French are taking place at DTLA’s oldest destination. The founding place of Los Angeles, aka El Pueblo, where La Fiesta meets historical monuments at every turn. Plenty of dancing, some traditional, some not, but all are centered around two grand outdoor stages. Plus there’s a Kids Zone with free games and entertainment.  Just across the street, it’s the Battle of La Puebla, all over again at Hecho in L.A. The battle to see who can eat the most tacos with Taco Madness! LA Plaza is a Mexican-American museum next to La Iglesia de Nuestra Señora Reina de Los Angeles. May 3-5, 10 a.m.-10 p.m.  Olvera Street, 845 N. Alameda Street.

KerFree100

Yup, you guessed it. It's me Keri Freeman, publisher and concept designer for Downtown Weekly. As an African American Indian and middle aged female who lives, works and plays in Downtown Los Angeles for the better of 25 years, it gives me great pleasure to be able to tell our story in such a unique way and offer support for literary artists and educated journalists who inspire me every day to keep writing although I think I suck at it. Also, it would seem I'm the only woman of color to publish a newspaper here in over 100 years, so hopefully that inspires some future generations as well....Just remember if its fun...it can't be work....Thank you, people of Gaia, for your continued support and thank you for reading!