In Sync for Cinco

On May 5, 1862, 2,000 poorly trained Mexican federal militia defended two strategic military forts against 6,000 crack French troops. The Mexican soldiers held their positions and routed the French, winning the day for their country.

The celebration of that battle, The Battle of Puebla, lives on as Cinco de Mayo.

A number of Cinco de Mayo festivities will take place around Ventura County over the weekend:

* The Mexican American Chamber of Commerce of Ventura County will hold its annual celebration at Plaza Park, Fifth and C Streets, Oxnard.


Saturday, festivities will run from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. and include folklorico dancers and contemporary Spanish music performed by local and regional groups. The fiesta continues from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sunday with mariachi bands and norteno groups (Spanish country music). Arts and crafts and food concessions, along with a children’s carnival, will be available both days. Admission is free. For information, call 486-0266.

* Moorpark will hold its first annual celebration Saturday at the City Hall Community Center, 799 Moorpark Ave. A children’s program will be held from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. featuring a bilingual magic show, puppet show, pinata and ballet folklorico. Admission is free. A Mexican dinner will be served from 7 to 9 p.m. for $4. A dance will be from 7 p.m. to midnight. Providing the music will be the bands of local residents Joe Lozano and Dave Cota. The highlight of the evening will be the coronation of Miss Cinco de Mayo. Admission is $5. For information, call 529-2991. Dance tickets must be purchased in advance at Roberto’s Barber Shop, 71 High St., Moorpark, 529-2501.

* The Inlakech Theatre Company of Ventura County will present a trilogy of Latino theater performances at 8 p.m. Saturday and Sunday at the Haydock Junior High School Auditorium, 647 W. Hill St., Oxnard.

Teatro Mestizo of Santa Barbara will present “El Hombre Que se Convirtio en Perro” by Argentine playwright Marcos Contreras.

The second performance, by Teatro Inlakech, will present a classic in Chicano literature, “Ham and Eggs,” by Lino Landy and Richard Lopez Landy.

The final group, El Teatro Latino of Compton Community College, will perform “La Mentira,” by Marcos Contreras.

Tickets are $5; $3 for children. A special $12 family rate is offered. For information, call 486-7468.

* Cinco de Mayo activities at Ventura College, 4667 Telegraph Road, Ventura, will take place from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday in the campus quad area and from 7 to 9:30 p.m. in the college theater. Afternoon festivities include Mariachi Colima, poetry reading, a folklorico dancing group and pinatas for children. The evening program again features Mariachi Colima and folklorico dancing. All events are free. For information, call 654-6462.

* In honor of Cinco de Mayo, the Ventura County Unit of the American Cancer Society will hold a black-tie dinner and auction Saturday to raise money to support cancer research. The event, at the Financial Plaza Hilton, 600 Esplanade Drive, Oxnard, will include traditional mariachi music. Items up for bid during a silent and live auction include trips to Mexico, Phoenix, San Francisco, New York and Las Vegas. Tickets are $75 single, $150 per couple. For information, call 983-8864 or 656-3437.