California Travel Tips

Fiestas Patrias Celebrated in Sac, Santa Ana, Los Angeles

Published on: September 08, 2019


Scenes from Santa Ana & Los Angeles celebrations pictured.

Mexican Independence Day (September 16) and the famous “El Grito” cry for independence is not even a nod in many cities in California. After all, it is a celebration of Mexico’s independence against Spanish colonial rule — something the U.S. (and especially California) may identify with since the Spanish mission system was established throughout California.

However, one of California’s most important battles, Mexican-American War, ended with the 1848 Treaty of Guadalupe Hidalgo, forcing Mexican Cession of the northern territories of Alta California and other lands to the United States. While it may seem odd that California cities, municipalities and chambers of commerce celebrate Mexican holidays, the truth is that nearly 40% of California’s population is of Hispanic or Mexican descent. According to the US Census Bureau the City of Los Angeles was comprised of 48.7% Hispanics or Latinos in 2018. Cities such as L.A. often fund Fiestas Patrias and El Grito ceremonies.

So what is it? The event may include a ceremonial shout-out of El Grito, also known as the Cry of Dolores which was the battle cry that urged citizens of Dolores, Mexico to revolt against Spanish rule around 2:30 a.m. on Sept.16, 1810.

As historical celebrations transform (this one is celebrated in Mexico’s National Palace in Mexico City each year,) the focus often changes. Locally Fiestas Patrias events range from a ceremony on the steps of the California State Capitol in Sacramento to Santa Ana’s two day street festival with concerts, vendors, a carnival and parade. See California Fiestas Patrias celebrations!



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