SJ celebrates Cinco de Mayo with parades and city-sponsored lowriding

ByCornell Barnard KGO logo
Monday, May 6, 2024
SJ celebrates Cinco de Mayo with parades and lowriders
San Jose celebrated Cinco de Mayo with parades and a city-sponsored lowriding event.

SAN JOSE, Calif. (KGO) -- In the South Bay, thousands celebrated Cinco de Mayo in a big way. This year, there were two parades in San Jose to celebrate Mexican heritage, including one event that now officially sanctions and celebrates lowriders in the community.

Cinco de Mayo in downtown San Jose, part parade, part party. Marina Romero knows why she's here.

"To celebrate our heritage, celebrate cars and family," Romero said.

In East San Jose, there was another parade stretching down King Road.

Ruth Salas brought her daughter Genesis.

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"When I was a kid, my parents used to bring us out. Now it's fine to bring Genesis out, so she can see part of our culture," Salas said.

Three hundred low riders and their drivers were official proud participants in this event, reviving a community tradition surrounding these one-of-a-kind cars.

"It's been years since we were able to celebrate our culture," said Armando Barbosa.

Barbosa is a member of the United Lowrider Council.

"I'm completely in a humble state of mind. The city has gotten together, officials -- we have to thank them," Barbosa said.

RELATED: San Jose Cinco de Mayo parade to return with lowrider cruise

"I remember growing up on the East Side of San Jose cruising as a young man. Now we can do it as an official city-sponsored event," said San Jose City Council Member Peter Ortiz.

Ortiz says he helped bring this festival to East San Jose after years of controversy.

"For years, the Cinco de Mayo celebration has been demonized due to the mistakes with the community in the past. What we're saying this year, it's a beautiful to celebrate Cinco de Mayo. It's something we should be proud of," Ortiz said.

"I've seen we've gone from not liking cruising to it being part of our community. That's a great thing for the community," said Jorge Lopez from Gilroy.

For now, time to celebrate Cinco de Mayo.

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