The Best 5 Cities to Celebrate Cinco de Mayo - United Hub

The 5 best cities to celebrate Cinco de Mayo

By Bob Cooper

It may be surprising, but Cinco de Mayo is actually a holiday celebrated more in the U.S. than in Mexico. Mexico's actual Independence Day is on September 16, a holiday that Mexicans observe in a similar way Americans observe Fourth of July. The exception is in the city of Puebla, where in 1862 during the Battle of Puebla, occupying French forces were defeated by outnumbered Mexican patriots. There is no one reason why Cinco de Mayo has since become the main celebration of Mexican and Mexican-American culture in the U.S.; some say it's simply that Dieciseis de Septiembre is harder to say. But, people of all ethnicities have embraced the holiday in the country that shares Mexico's northern border.

Aerial view of Cholula, Puebla, Mexico

Puebla, Mexico

Unlike the rest of Mexico, Mexico's fourth-largest city of Puebla celebrates May 5 as a major holiday, with the city shutting down to commemorate the 1862 battle. Puebla is a worthwhile city to visit anytime, as the historic Baroque district is designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its archbishop's palace, 17th-century cathedral and tile-covered houses. The Popocatépetl and Iztaccíhutal volcanoes are also not too far from the city. The city comes to life on May 5, and this year the holiday conveniently falls on a Saturday. To celebrate, the city hosts a battle reenactment, followed by a military parade with colorful floats and dancers. Afterwards, the celebration continues with an abundance of food, drink, music and dancing. Concerts and cultural events are scheduled on the days leading up to the holiday so make sure to arrive to the city a few days early to take part in the full experience.

Denver, Colorado

The 31st annual Cinco de Mayo Celebrate Culture Festival in downtown Denver is the largest Cinco de Mayo celebration anywhere, with an estimated 400,000 people flocking to Civic Center Park on May 5-6. Festivities include a parade, carnival rides, Chihuaha races, a taco eating contest and a lowrider show. Hispanic bands from both the U.S. and Mexico provide music for the two-day event in nine daily performances on the main stage, plus dozens of music and dance performances of many types on two other stages. Need a break from all of the festivities? Go for a hike on the trails above nearby Boulder; the weather is usually superb in early May.

Taco Street Vendor in San Diego

San Diego, California

The 35th annual Fiesta Old Town Cinco de Mayo celebration (May 4-6) has become so popular, with 100,000 flocking to Old Town San Diego Historic Park and the surrounding streets each year, it has been expanded from a weekend-only event to three days this year, with flamenco, mariachi fusion and gypsy swing bands performing on two stages on Friday, May 4. The festival fully comes alive on Saturday and Sunday with performances by dozens of bands and dance groups from several genres — most with a Latin flavor — on four stages. Kids will enjoy the petting zoo and pony rides, and all should enjoy Ballet Folklorico (Mexican folk dancing), Lucha Libre (Mexican wrestling) and Lowrider Lane (a custom car) exhibitions. Add food vendors and the result is a spicy blend of music, dance, food, drinks and fun in one of America's best beach cities. ¡Olé!

St. Paul, Minnesota

Cinco de Mayo West Side is a lively celebration of Mexican culture in the West Side neighborhood of this Twin City. The May 5 festival opens with a morning parade along Cesar Chavez Street, then continues all afternoon with predominantly Latin entertainment on three stages, including a family stage. Also slated are a Lowrider Car, Truck and Bike Show; Jalapeno Eating Contests; and an El Grito ("The Scream") contest, in which participants let out their most spirited scream in honor of the priest's scream that, according to legend, triggered the Mexican War of Independence. The addition of food and a beer garden round out the festivities.

San Antonio, Texas

America's seventh-largest city is celebrating its tricentennial all year, but in the biggest way on Commemorative Week (May 1-6) because it was during that week in 1718 that Mission San Antonio de Valero (later called the Alamo) and the Presidio San Antonio de Béxar were established. During this time period, the city was under Spanish and then Mexican rule for the next 118 years. The city's biggest Cinco de Mayo celebration is at Market Square, site of the largest Mexican market in America, where 50,000 people will be treated to live music, folklorico dance exhibitions and Tex-Mex food. Before and after the holiday, other Commemorative Week events that visitors can enjoy include Friday night fireworks at the Alamo and Sunday flyovers and skydiving exhibitions at Fort Sam Houston.

If you go

United Airlines offers service from U.S. cities to all of these cities including travel to Puebla, Mexico. Visit united.com or use the United app to plan your Cinco de Mayo vacaciones.

Jessica Kimbrough named Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer

By The Hub team, July 10, 2020

Jessica Kimbrough, currently Labor Relations and Legal Strategy Managing Director, will take on the new role of Chief Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Officer Managing Director.

Jessica assumes this new and expanded position to focus on global inclusion and equity as part of our enhanced commitment to ensure best practices across the business to strengthen our culture.

In this role, Jessica will be responsible for helping United redefine our efforts on diversity, equity and inclusion – ensuring that our programs and approach are strategic, integrated and outcome-oriented, while we continue to build a culture that reflects our core values. She will report to Human Resources and Labor Relations EVP Kate Gebo.

"Jessica's appointment to this role is another critical step our executive team is taking to ensure diversity, equity and inclusion remains a top priority at United," said CEO Scott Kirby. "Given her drive, experience and commitment to champion collaboration and allyship among our employee business resource groups, she is uniquely qualified to take on this position and I look forward to working closely with her."

As Labor Relations and Legal Strategy Managing Director, Jessica worked closely with senior management to create and maintain positive labor relations among our unionized workforce, providing counsel on labor litigation, negotiations, contract administration, organizing issues and managing attorneys who represent United in labor relations. Previously, she served as Labor and Employment Counsel in our legal department.

Jessica has a passion for creating a pipeline of diverse lawyers and leaders, and was honored as one of Chicago Defender's "Women of Excellence" for excellence in her career and civic engagement in 2017. She currently serves as President of uIMPACT, our women's employee business resource group.

Jessica's new role is effective immediately.

United Cargo and logistics partners keep critical medical shipments moving

By The Hub team, July 02, 2020

By working together and strengthening partnerships during these unprecedented times, our global community has overcome challenges and created solutions to keep the global supply chain moving. As COVID-19 continues to disrupt the shipping landscape, United and our industry partners have increasingly demonstrated our commitment to the mission of delivering critical medical supplies across the world.

United Cargo has partnered with DSV Air and Sea, a leading global logistics company, to transport important pharmaceutical materials to places all over the world. One of the items most critical during the current crisis is blood plasma.

Plasma is a fragile product that requires very careful handling. Frozen blood plasma must be kept at a very low, stable temperature of negative 20 degrees Celsius or less – no easy task considering it must be transported between trucks, warehouses and airplanes, all while moving through the climates of different countries. Fortunately, along with our well-developed operational procedures and oversight, temperature-controlled shipping containers from partners like va-Q-tec can help protect these sensitive blood plasma shipments from temperature changes.

A single TWINx shipping container from va-Q-tec can accommodate over 1,750 pounds of temperature-sensitive cargo. Every week, DSV delivers 20 TWINx containers, each one filled to capacity with human blood plasma, for loading onto a Boeing 787-9 for transport. The joint effort to move thousands of pounds of blood plasma demonstrates that despite the distance, challenges in moving temperature-sensitive cargo and COVID-19 obstacles, we continue to find creative solutions with the help of our strong partnerships.

United Cargo is proud to keep the commercial air bridges open between the U.S. and the rest of the world. Since March 19, we have operated over 3,200 cargo-only flights between six U.S. hubs and over 20 cities in Asia, Australia, Europe, South America, India, the Caribbean and the Middle East.

Celebrating Juneteenth

By United Airlines, June 18, 2020

A message from UNITE, United Airlines Multicultural Business Resource Group

Fellow United team members –

Hello from the UNITE leadership team. While we communicate frequently with our 3,500 UNITE members, our platform doesn't typically extend to the entire United family, and we are grateful for the opportunity to share some of our thoughts with all of you.

Tomorrow is June 19. On this day in 1865, shortened long ago to "Juneteenth," Union soldiers arrived in Galveston, Texas, to announce that the Civil War had ended and all enslaved individuals were free. For many in the African-American community, particularly in the South, it is recognized as the official date slavery ended in the United States.

Still, despite the end of slavery, the Constitutional promise that "All men are created equal" would overlook the nation's Black citizens for decades to come. It wasn't until nearly a century later that the Civil Rights Act (1964) ended legal segregation and the Voting Rights Act (1965) protected voting rights for Black Americans. But while the nation has made progress, the killings of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor and George Floyd have made it undeniably clear that we still have a lot of work to do to achieve racial parity and inclusion.

Two weeks ago, Scott and Brett hosted a virtual town hall and set an important example by taking a minute, as Brett said, "to lower my guard, take off my armor, and just talk to you. And talk to you straight from the heart."

Difficult conversations about race and equity are easy to avoid. But everyone needs to have these conversations – speaking honestly, listening patiently and understanding that others' experiences may be different from your own while still a valid reflection of some part of the American experience.

To support you as you consider these conversations, we wanted to share some resources from one of United's partners, The National Museum of African American History and Culture. The museum will host an all-day Virtual Juneteenth Celebration to recognize Juneteenth through presentations, stories, photographs and recipes. The museum also has a portal that United employees can access called Talking About Race, which provides tools and guidance for everyone to navigate conversations about race.

Our mission at UNITE is to foster an inclusive working environment for all of our employees. While we are hopeful and even encouraged by the widespread and diverse show of support for African Americans around the country – and at United - we encourage everyone to spend some time on Juneteenth reflecting on racial disparities that remain in our society and dedicating ourselves to the work that still must be done to fight systemic racism. By honoring how far we've come and honestly acknowledging how far we still must go, we believe United – and the incredible people who are the heart and soul of this airline - can play an important role in building a more fair and just world.

Thank you,

UNITE (United Airlines Multicultural Business Resource Group)

Leadership Team

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