Cinco de Mayo Party Ideas

Have a Cinco de Mayo celebration! Every year, May 5th is reserved for the biggest and baddest Cinco de Mayo fiesta that anyone has ever seen. The bar crowds get larger, the Cinco de Mayo party decorations multiply and become more colorful, and the margaritas get tastier. Use these Cinco de Mayo party ideas to create an unforgettable Cinco de Mayo party theme.

Cinco de Mayo Party Invitations
A personalized fiesta invitation could be just the thing needed to get your party off to a great start. You can even roll it up and tie it with a fiesta bandana Let your guests know that the bandanna must be worn in order to gain admittance into the party.

Create your own invitations on stationary with a chili pepper border. Remember to give all of the important information, which should include dressing appropriately for this festive fiesta (including the decorative sombrero and colorful serape you bought on your last trip to Mexico). Throw a little confetti in the envelope to add some fun!

Here are some fun Cinco de Mayo theme invitation wording examples that you can use on your invites, or even a party banner - 
  • Seniors and Senoritas, join us for margaritas and fajitas!
  • Nacho Average Cinco de Mayo Party!
  • Lots of Margaritas, a little salt and lime, Cinco de Mayo... It's Party Time!
  • You won't have to go South of the Border for our Fiesta!
  • Grab your sombreros for fajitas, margaritas and more this Cinco de Mayo!
  • Join us for chip dips and margarita sips as we celebrate Cinco de Mayo with a Fiesta!
  • Come and Shake your maracas at Amy and John's Cinco de Mayo Party!
  • After this Cinco de Mayo Fiesta you'll need a Siesta!
cinco de mayo Decorations
No Cinco de Mayo party would be complete without a chili pepper wreath hanging on the door, found at your local import store or world food market. You can make one yourself if you're feeling adventurous.

A personalized fiesta banner outside in the front yard definitely says that your house is where to celebrate Cinco de Mayo! If you want the fun to start at the front door, think about a life-sized cutout of a male or female Flamenco dance, it is a great way to greet your guests or a most unusual photo op.

Hang strings of margarita lights all over the place. They are great for the buffet, the bar, and around doorways. Groups of red, black, orange and green balloons around the room will add to the festive atmosphere.

There are some fun scene setters that are inexpensive and easy to use.
Colorful handmade blankets from Mexico make fabulous wall decorations, as do large sombreros.

cinco de mayo buffet, bar andTable Decorations
Decorating your tables for Cinco de Mayo is easy! A few of our favorite ideas:
  • Use the brim of a sombrero as a chip bowl! Set out a few different salsas. A decoration and a functional part of your buffet :)
  • Clear containers filled with bright limes make a great accent for the bar (useful for all those Coronas too!)
  • Mini cacti make great placecards (and double as a party favor)
  • Lay a Mexican Serape on top of your tablecloth as an accent
  • Forget fresh flowers... use tissue paper ones instead!
  • Pinatas can do double duty as a buffet decoration and party activity
Here are our favorite party supplies for your buffet, table and bar:
Cinco de Mayo Centerpice Ideas
Have you ever wanted to let loose and shake your maracas? Well now is your chance! Place a few sets of maracas on each table (or as a centerpiece depending on the size of the table). Encourage your guests to shake the maracas every time they hear a certain song/word during the evening. This makes for fun entertainment as well as nice decoration.

cinco de mayo menu
For an authentic Cinco de Mayo fiesta, try a Mexican buffet so that everyone can sample a little bit of everything. Some foods that you want to be sure to include are chicken fajitas, warm flour tortillas, chili con queso, tortilla soup, Mexican rice, black bean and corn salsa, three-milk cake, and flan. Check out these great Mexican recipes.
 
For an easy way to feed a crowd, do and authentic Mexican taco bar! Here is all you need:
  • Chopped Beef
  • Chopped Chicken  
  • Black Beans
  • Chips and Salsa
  • Pico de Gallo
  • Sour Cream
  • Queso Dip
  • Rice
  • Taco Sauce
  • Lettuce
  • Shredded Cheese
  • Hard Taco Shells
  • Soft Flour Tortillas
  • Guacamole

Don't forget to serve a great drink! How about a Pina Coloda or Margarita? Bottles of Corona are a must. Combine the best of both worlds... serve your guests a Corona Margarita!

Corona Margarita
  • 6 ounces white or blanco tequila
  • 12 ounces Corona
  • 6 ounces frozen limeade concentrate
  • Ice cubes to suit
  • Lime flavored salt
  • Lime wedge (optional)
Cover the rim of the glass with the salt. Pour all ingredients into blender and blend well. Garnish with a lime wedge.

Cinco de Mayo games and Activities
Add some spice to your Cinco de Mayo Fiesta by having a Hot Pepper Eating Contest. The challenge is to see how many hot peppers your guests can eat without bursting into flames. You are going to want to buy mostly mildly hot peppers like pepperoncini, banana peppers, and pimentos. But get some hot peppers for the brave guests; jalapeno, chili, and polano peppers all pack a wallop. And for the grand finale - habanero peppers. Prepare a table outside with big bowls of chilies, plates, and latex gloves, because some peppers tend to be hot to the touch. And pour glasses of milk for your friends to kill the burn of eating all those peppers!

Too hot for you? Here are a few more fiesta activities to consider:
  • Teach everyone to do the Macarena or the Mexican Hat Dance and have a contest to see who is the best dancer.
  • Hang a bull piñata and let everyone have a turn trying to knock it to the ground.
  • Mexican Hat Dance – Get a sombrero or two (depending on how many are attending the party but you want to make sure the dancer has an audience), add some Latin fiesta music and watch everyone prove what an “expert” dancer they are.
  • Limbo - Play some fun music while your friends stand in line waiting to bend backwards low enough to fit under the limbo stick (broom handle, yardstick, etc.). In order to win, the limbo master must not touch the stick or fall on the floor while limbo-ing under the stick (which is usually held by 2 people).
See our Fiesta Party Games for more great ideas!

Cinco de Mayo Party Favors
Don’t forget to give your party the personal touch. A personalized fiesta theme candy bar is the ultimate party favor. Set them in the rim of a sombrero by the door. It will remind your guests who throws the best Cinco de Mayo fiesta in town.

You can also hand out a few fun wearables to all of your guests -
Cinco de Mayo History
On the 5th day of May, in 1862, the Mexicans defeated the French army at the Battle of Puebla. The holiday Cinco de Mayo is a commemoration and celebration of the victory of the smaller Mexican army over the larger and more modern French army. Although it is celebrated and recognized as a holiday in all areas of Mexico, Cinco de Mayo is celebrated most heartily in the state of Puebla where the French were defeated. It is, however, becoming more common to see the celebration stretch to other states within the U.S. and along the border of Mexico where many people with Mexican ancestry are living.

Now that you've had a quick history lesson, join in the fun and celebrate Cinco de Mayo with style! You can also check out our Mexican fiesta party, South of the Border Fiesta. Have fun at you Cinco de Mayo Fiesta!