Richmond’s Cinco de Mayo festivities to return after three-year hiatus

Richmond preps for full weekend of Cinco de Mayo festivities
Tens of thousands of people came out for the annual 23rd Street Merchants Association Cinco de Mayo Festival sponsored by Chevron Richmond. (Photo credit: Mike Kinney)

By Kathy Chouteau

It’s baaack! Richmond’s 23rd Street Merchants Association is organizing the return of the Cinco de Mayo festival Sun., May 7 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. This year marks the festival’s 17th trip around the sun after a three-year pandemic pause.

Rocio Martinez of Rigo’s Auto Sales—whose Rigoberto and Carla Mendoza sit on the association’s board—confirmed the return of the family friendly festival, which will take place along the 23rd St. corridor in Richmond between Clinton Ave. and Rheem Ave. Included among the festivities will be a lip-smacking variety of Latinx food vendors, food trucks and restaurants, as well as music, art/other booths, pony rides and kid-friendly fun.

Two stages—one sponsored by La Raza 93.3 FM on 23rd & Rheem Ave. and another sponsored by Radio Lazer 1510 AM at 23rd & Clinton Ave.—will provide the crowd with live entertainment. Martinez said that at the last time the festival was held in 2019, more than 100,000 people attended.

Chevron Richmond is a major sponsor of the event, with other local businesses like the City of Richmond, Mechanics Bank, AC Transit and more lending their support too. Questions re: the Cinco de Mayo festival be emailed to Rocio Martinez or Claudia Chavez at [email protected]. Please note that alcohol is not permitted and vendor applications are no longer being accepted.

Also making a return this year is the volunteer-run Cinco de Mayo Peace and Unity Parade, which will take place Sat., May 6, the day before the Richmond festival. The 15th annual parade starts at 10 a.m. that Saturday at 24th St. and Barrett Ave. in Richmond and ends at 12:30 p.m. at St. Paul’s Church, 1845 Church Ln. in San Pablo. Buses will return people to Richmond at the parade’s completion. For more info, email [email protected].