One hundred fifty-one years ago today, the scrappy Mexican army defeated occupying French forces. The Battle of Puebla didn't halt the French invasion entirely, but the unlikely Mexican victory on May 5 went down in the history books as a day for celebration — better known as Cinco de Mayo. Held annually at L.A.'s own slice of Mexican history, El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument in Olvera Street, this year's Univision-produced Cinco de Mayo Festival includes folk dance and mariachi performances from Ballet Folklorico and Mariachi Estampa de America in the Plaza Kiosko, plus 17-member headliners La Original Banda El Limon on the main stage in Father Serra Park. With Los Angeles and Main streets closed to traffic and super-convenient Metro access at Union Station just across the street, you might as well kick back with a cerveza or two in the Dolores Plaza beer garden before you head home. El Pueblo de Los Angeles Historical Monument, 125 Paseo de la Plaza, dwntwn.; 11 a.m.-5 p.m.; free. (213) 485-6855,
Sun., May 5, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., 2013

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