South of the border

<i>Ándele</i>, <i>ándele</i> to the nearest Mexican independence day celebration.

Ándele, ándele to the nearest Mexican independence day celebration.

Contrary to popular American opinion, Mexican independence day is not Cinco de Mayo.

Yeah, shocking, I know. While Americans flock to tequila bars and salsa clubs during the May celebration, most Mexican citizens wait for the real party: 16 de Septiembre. (That’s September 16 for those who forgot their high-school Spanish). It’s kind of strange that people would get the two mixed up; the historic victories were decades apart and against different foes. No matter, September 16 is a Mexican celebration, which means margaritas, chilled Coronas, mariachis, tacos and tequila.

Most people have experienced a burning esophagus from a cheap tequila rush, but many don’t know the mastery required to craft a quality tequila. José Cortes, head jimador and ambassador of Casa Herradura, will give a demonstration at Zócalo during the independence day celebration. The Mexican food joint also will feature drink specials, $2 tacos, live mariachi, ballet folklórico and tequila tasting.

La Raza Galería Posada also will be celebrating the 16th of September, except they’re celebrating it on the 15th. More than 30 ritual masks will be on display through December. The grand opening is Tuesday, September 15, from 5 to 9 p.m., with music by Los Cojolites and Rowdy Kate, and an appearance by master mask maker Fidel de la Puente Basabe.

And in true Sacramento State fashion, the university will host a free celebration of Mexican independence featuring Mariachi Los Versatiles and Aztec dancing by Quetzalcoatl Citlalli.