It’s not exactly something that’s touted in ads for Sauza and Patron, but did you know tequila is really good for you? True story. Depending on who you ask, the spirituous substance hewn from the agave plants of Mexico can not only work as a sleep aid, but can also ease digestion, lower blood sugar, and prevent osteoporosis to boot. Oh, yeah — it can also get you really hammered, really quickly. You can discover this empirically during the annual celebration of Cinco de Mayo several days from now, as tequila will be available in abundance at any of the countless parties, fiestas, and special events that will take place around the Valley. That includes a majority of the following events contained within our annual Cinco de Mayo guide, most of which take place on Thursday, May 5, unless specified otherwise.
Cinco de Mayo Phoenix Festival
200 E. Van Buren St.
It wouldn’t be Cinco De Mayo in the Valley without this enormous two-day block party that takes over the intersection of Van Buren and Second streets in downtown Phoenix every year. As with its previous editions, this year’s event will feature a variety of entertainment and activities, including carnival-style rides and games, arts and crafts, folklorico dancers, traditional mariachi music, lucha libre wrestling, and food and drink vendors. Cash prizes of $50 each will also be awarded hourly throughout the weekend at random via contests. The live music lineup will be headlined by such bands and artists as Sunny Ozuna, Thee Latin All Stars, Brenton Wood, El Chicano, and Grammy Award winners Little Joe y la Familia. Hours are 2 p.m. to midnight on Saturday, May 7; and noon to 10 p.m. on Sunday, May 8. General admission is $5 at the door before 5 p.m., $15 thereafter, and free for kids 10 and under. Call 602-279-4669.
3038 W. Van Buren St.
Heroic technicos will battle for supremacy with dastardly rudos in the squared circle during the action-packed weekly Lucha Libre Voz event on Sunday, May 8. 3:30 p.m.; $10 for adults, free for kids 12 and under. Call 623-687-8513.
930 E. University Dr., Tempe
Girl Code star and stand-up comic Carly Aquilino will perform a four-night stint at the legendary local comedy club from Thursday, May 5, to Sunday, May 8. Performance times vary. Admission is $20 each show. Call 480-921-9877.
Arriba Mexican Grill
Six Valley locations
Arriba patrons can partake in food and drink specials, live entertainment, dancing, giveaways, and prizes at each of the chain’s locations around the Valley on Cinco de Mayo. Promotional girls from Corona, Sauza, and Budweiser will also make appearances. 10:45 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 602-265-9112.
7330 N. Dreamy Draw Dr.
The restaurant’s famed Cinco de Mayo celebration will offer a street taco bar, food tents, promos and giveaways, shots poured by Tequila Sheila, and live music from Latin guitarist Esteban and country music crooner James Otto. A free margarita, cerveza, or bottled water is included with the admission price. 3 p.m. to 2 a.m., $20. Call 602-944-1286.
3115 E. Lincoln Dr., Scottsdale
Food and drink specials will be served all day, including $3 Mexican beers and $5 organic margaritas. 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Call 602-535-8914.
Blanco Tacos + Tequila
2502 E. Camelback Rd.
Happy house prices on drinks, such as $5 margaritas, will be offered from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. at Blanco. You can also score happy-hour deals like $3 tacos, $3 nachos, and $4 tortas from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m. The signature margarita of the month (a potent mix of prickly pear sour, Jose Cuervo Silver, and St. Germain) can also be had for $10. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 602-429-8000.
7228 E. First Ave., Scottsdale
Highlights of this Scottsdale taqueria’s Cinco offerings include $3 Tecates all day, tequila tastings featuring such brands as Hornitos and Herradura, promos, giveaways, live music from Mariachi Tierra Linda starting at 4 p.m., and more. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Call 480-970-9002.
Thirteen Metro Phoenix locations
Tacos not your thing? No worries, wey. This upscale pizzeria chain will whip up its signature Spicy Southwest Pizza (made with chipotle ranch sauce, mozzarella, grilled chicken, and roasted peppers, and topped with mixed greens tossed with cilantro and ranch dressing) for only $5. No additional toppings are permitted to score the $5 deal. 11 a.m. to 9 p.m. Call 480-636-7704.
Golden Spoon Frozen Yogurt
16455 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
Customers who mention Phoenix New Times will receive two regular-sized yogurts for $5.99 on Cinco de Mayo. (Oh, and thanks for the name drop.) 11 a.m. to 9:30 p.m. Call 480-361-8438.
20825 N. Pima Rd., Scottsdale
The Cinco in the Park celebration promises an abundance of food and drink specials, as well as margaritas, live music, balloon artists, children’s activities, and more. 4 p.m. to 10 p.m., free. Call 480-513-8332.
The Lodge Sasquatch Kitchen
26 S. Farmer Ave., Tempe
Buckets filled with five bottles of Dos Equis will be $15, house wines and Skyy vodka cocktails will be $3, and NBA and NHL playoff action will fill every HD screen on Cinco de Mayo. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., free. Call 480-967-0578.
2534 N. Scottsdale Rd.
Five different appetizers — including corn cake souffle, fig and panela cheese salad, or chips with freshly made salsa and guacamole — can be had for $5 each. Ditto on such adult beverage options as sangria, mojitos, martinis, and margaritas. 3 p.m. to 9 p.m. Call 480-994-1799.
Nine Valley locations
Five straight days of Cinco de Mayo revelry will take place at the various Macayo’s around the Phoenix area from Monday, May 1, until Thursday, May 5. Each location will not only offer live music, piñatas, and balloon artists, but will also serve $4 Dos Equis bottles and Patron shots, $5 Margaritas de Macayo, and $8 Patron margaritas. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 602-264-6141.
Miracle Mile Deli
4433 N. 16th St.
Plates of chicken enchiladas covered in red sauce and served with a side of beans will be available for $9 per person on Cinco de Mayo. 10:30 a.m. to 8 p.m. Call 602-776-0992.
O.H.S.O. Eatery + NanoBrewery
4900 E. Indian School Rd.
Both you and your pooch will be welcome at O.H.S.O. on Cinco de Mayo as the Arcadia drinkery and eatery will offer a doggone good time on the holiday. A racing contest boasting such prizes from local groomer Puff & Fluff (including a puppy deli treat basket and free nail trim) will take place and a variety of dog-centric treats and giveaways are promised. 5 p.m. to 7 p.m., free. Call 602-955-0358.
Salt Tacos y Tequila
6751 N. Sunset Blvd., Glendale
Festivities will span two different days at Salt. On Cinco itself, deals like $2 chicken and carne asada tacos, $2 Montejo drafts and Corona bottles, $3 margaritas, and $4 Milagro shots can be had by patrons all day. An ice luge, mariachi bands, DJs, and dancing will also be on tap. Come back on Saturday, May 7, for $3 Bud Light and Montejo pints, $4 Milagro Tequila, and a guest DJ set by Kevin Federline. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Call 623-772-7282 for cover info.
Sierra Bonita Grill
6933 N. 7th St.
Five different lunch specials — including chicharrón potato taquitos, chipotle chicken street tacos, red chile pork tostadas, and green chile quesadillas — can be had for $5 each from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Meanwhile, two of Sierra Bonita’s made-to-order margaritas, the fresh-squeezed margarita and pomegranate margarita, will both be $5 each all day long. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 602-264-0700.
15323 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
Five-dollar deals will abound at this posh Scottsdale Quarter eatery during Cinco de Mayo, including such delights as the naked guacamole, taco vampiro, taco gobernador, and margarita crafted with El Jimidor Tequila. Patrons can get candid snapshots of themselves from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. at a photo booth, and local troubador Scott Hallock will strum and sing during the evening. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 480-245-6708.
6560 N. Scottsdale Rd.
The first 100 patrons at SumoMaya can pay for their Casamigos margaritas with pesos during Cinco de Mayo at this Scottsdale restaurant (limit two per person). Social-hour prices will be available all day in the bar, however, and a DJ will be dropping tunes all evening. 11 a.m. to midnight. Call 480-397-9520.
546 E. Osborn Rd.
This midtown restaurant will serve tacos stuffed with spicy and smoky cochinita pibil marinated in Roger Clyne’s Mexican Moonshine tequila on Cinco de Mayo for $1.99 each. Patrons can also enjoy live entertainment or, if they’re feeling creative, suggest a name for whatever the featured Mexican Moonshine cocktail is that day. If it’s chosen, they’ll score a $50 gift card for the restaurant and it might be featured on the Taco Guild menu up until the next Cinco de Mayo rolls around. 11 a.m. to 11 p.m. Call 602-264-4143.
3336 W. Bell Rd.
16048 N. Cave Creek Rd.
1949 W. Ray Rd., Chandler
All three Valle Luna restaurants are likely to be alive with activity on Cinco de Mayo, as each will offer its own selection of food, drinks, live entertainment, and fun. The Bell Road location, for instance, will feature music from DJ Elite and local band New Destiny starting at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m., respectively, as well as interactive games and a menu that includes carne asada, Luna wings, and ceviche. Meanwhile, the Cave Creek location promises drink specials and Pepe’s famous tacos, and happy hour prices from 3 p.m. until 10 p.m. And the Chandler version of Valle Luna will put on a lakeside celebration with music from DJ Fred from 5 p.m. to 11 p.m., acoustic guitarist Mike Mercier on the patio, and carne asada tacos from its Taqueria del Mar. Hours vary, $7 cover charge at the Bell Road location only. Call 602-768-3777.
7014 E. Camelback Rd., Scottsdale
Are you impervious to capsaicin or have a high tolerance for pain? Test your mettle by entering the “Habanero Inferno Taco Challenge” at the Scottsdale Z’Tejas location on Cinco de Mayo. Here’s how it will work: Order a plate containing four fiery Z’Tejas street tacos, one of which will be loaded up with habanero hot sauce. Those who can finish all four tacos will get $5 off the cost of the plate. (Offer excludes any happy-hour-priced tacos.) If you need something to help extinguish the flames, $5 Dulce Vida margaritas and $3 Coronas will be available all day. 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Call 480-946-4171.
BARS & CLUBS
1927 N. Gilbert Rd., Mesa
The revelry will be happening all day at this Mesa cantina with drink specials, fajita specials, and a karaoke session kicking off at 7 p.m. and running throughout the evening. 10 a.m. to 1 a.m. Call 480-655-1828.
2000 E. Rio Salado Pkwy., Tempe
Bar Louie will host a Cinco De Drinko party with $5.25 margaritas and $10 street taco plates. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., free. Call 480-658-1600.
130 E. Washington St.
The Cinco De Mayo edition of Bar Smith’s Thursday Ladies Night will feature $2 Coronas and $3 Jack Daniels Fire shots, as well as DJ AL3 dropping Latin music in the outdoor lounge upstairs. 9 p.m. Call 605-456-1991 for cover.
4747 E. Elliot Rd.
Cinco De Mayo party and concert featuring local singer-songwriting legend Walt Richardson, Phish tribute Limb By Jim, and rock band The Harvest. 5:30 p.m. Call 602-670-1109.
Calico Jack’s Cantina
6770 N. Sunrise Blvd.
Touted as the “craziest fiesta in the Valley,” the daylong Cinco De Mayo celebration at this Westgate spot will include DJs, dancing, games, prizes, and other amenities. Specials like $2 street tacos and $3 bottles of Modelo, Corona, and Pacifico will be available all day, and DJ Izzy will spin Top 40 hits and Latin music starting at 5 p.m. Contests with more than $1,000 in cash and prizes are promised, and patrons who bring the most friends will have a chance to win a trip to Mexico. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Call 623-877-5225 for cover info.
Cobra Arcade Bar
801 N. 2nd St.
All the button-mashing and joystick-wrangling action inside downtown Phoenix’s premier arcade bar won’t be the only sort of colorful mayhem taking place during the Lucha de Cobra block party. Masked wrestlers from Lucha Libra Voz will also grapple in a wrestling ring set up outside; contortionist queen Cleodora Mathers will perform eye-popping and pulse-pounding stunts; and DJs like Anthony Hart and El Nico will spin indie dance and Latin music. The Paz Cantina food truck will serving up eats, Don Julio Tequila will have a margarita bar, and drink specials will be available. 4 p.m., free. Call 602-595-5873.
308 N. 2nd Ave.
The dancers and musicians of local ensemble Flamenco por la Vida will bring their artistry to the Crescent’s lounge on Saturday, May 7. 6 p.m., free. Call 602-716-2222.
3432 E. Illini St.
The hot-bodied beefcake dancers of Phoenix’s only male strip club will take it all off during the spot’s Cinco celebration, which will also feature a pinata filled with sweet treats and prizes. 7 p.m. to 3 a.m., $30. Call 602-274-3425.
1361 N. Alma School Rd., Chandler
1958 S. Greenfield Rd., Mesa
8000 S. Priest Dr., Tempe
All three Dos Gringos locations will feature indoor and outdoor bars, DJs, games, prizes, and giveaways all day. Mesa will also have live music from LP2 from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and other performances. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m. Call 480-753-4577 or 480-633-5525.
4425 N. Saddlebag Trail, Scottsdale
640 S. Mill Ave., Tempe
Both locations of this “super macho taqueria” will host Cinco de Hefe blowouts featuring $8 Don Julio shots and local DJs dropping electronic dance music. Doors open at noon in Tempe, 2 p.m. in Scottsdale. Call 480-945-6200 or 480-257-2797.
Fuego Bar & Grill
9118 W. Van Buren St., Tolleson
The Fuego De Mayo festivities will offer two nights of fun, food and drink specials, giveaways, and other fun. Los Socials will kick things off on Thursday, May 5 with Power 98.3 mixmaster DJ Niccassio. 5 p.m. to 1:30 a.m., $10. The following night will feature Latin R&B band Tierra and local act Power Drive. 6 p.m. to 1:30 p.m., $20. Call 623-478-7300.
1724 E. McDowell Road
Female illusionist Ruby will host the Cinco de Mayo party and drag show. 9 p.m., free. Call 602-254-0231.
7320 E. Indian Plaza, Scottsdale
Eccentric EDM artist Dillon Francis will headline Live 101.5’s latest #BestNightEver party at Livewire on Cinco De Mayo. 9 p.m. to 2 a.m. Visit www.live1015phoenix.com for admission info. Call 480-970-6980.
4228 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
222 S. Mill Ave., Tempe
You can take a selfie with a donkey, partake in drink specials, dance up a storm as DJs drop the hits, or just get rowdy at either Loco Patron location. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., free. Call 480-874-0033 or 480-699-0922.
The Lost Leaf
914 N. 5th St.
Mexican folk band Mariachi De Grand will be the highlight of the Lost Leaf’s Cinco fete. 9 p.m., free. Call 602-258-0014.
Macayo’s Depot Cantina
300 S. Ash Ave., Tempe
Cinco de Macayo party with food and drink specials, DJs, dancing, live music, giveaways, and more. A slate of live music starts at 3 p.m. when the event goes 21-and-over. Drink deals include $4 Patron and Dos Equis, $5 Macayo margaritas, and $8 Patron margaritas. 10 a.m. to 2 a.m. Call 480-966-6677.
Marc’s Sports Grill & Nightlife
4494 W. Peoria Ave., Glendale
The kitchen will serve a “fiesta menu” all day with specials like $3 soft tacos, $6 cheese quesadillas, $6 super-sized nachos, and $9 chicken enchiladas or green chili burros. Meanwhile, drink deals like $3 margaritas, $3.25 Coronas, and $3.75 Dos Equis will also be available, happy hour runs from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., and you can score a buck off any adult beverage from 8 p.m. until close. There will also be free poker at 11:15 a.m. and 6:30 p.m., as well as karaoke and dancing from 9 p.m. until last call. 11 a.m. to 2 a.m., free. Call 623-842-1053.
393 W. Warner Rd., Chandler
The Reef will hold a Cinco De Mayo party with specials like $1 tacos, $3 Dos Equis and Jose Cuervo cocktails, and $5 margaritas until 11 p.m. DJ Chop will spin Latin music mixes all evening. 7 p.m. to 2 a.m., free. Call 480-963-5520.
4245 N. Craftsman Court, Scottsdale
Cinco de Mayo will be celebrated all weekend long at Rockbar with nightly gigs and drink specials like $4 Dos Equis and domestic beers. The music lineup includes an acoustic jam with Mike Mahoney and friends on Thursday, May 5; Cousins of the Wize and One Drop on Friday, May 6; The Flippin Switches on Saturday, May 7; and a “friends and family” jam on Sunday, May 8. Performances times and cover charges vary. Call 480-331-9190.
The Rogue Bar
423 N. Scottsdale Rd., Scottsdale
Cinco de Mayo Rockfest with music from Angels and Aliens, Painting Fences, Manic Monkeys, Kid Dynamite and the Blast, Jon Klay, and Cobalt Jelly. Live art sessions and solo performances will also take place and free super nachos will be served in case rocking out leaves you a little peckish. 7 p.m., $5. Call 480-947-3580.
7200 W. Ray Rd., Chandler
Top 40 cover band Vanilla Spice, which pays tribute to the hitmakers of the ’90s, will get Sandbar patrons dancing during its Cinco De Mayo celebration. 8 p.m. to 11 p.m., free. Call 480-961-1700.
26 E. University Dr., Tempe
Local bands The Sugar Thieves, Bear Ghost, Banana Gun, and Wyves will perform during Shady Park’s Cinco De Mayo festivities. 7 p.m., $8. Call 480-474-4222.
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5350 S. Lakeshore Dr., Tempe
Enjoy two-for-one specials on drafts, wines, well drinks, and specialty cocktails, as well as $3 tacos, on Cinco De Mayo at this lakeside bar and grill in Tempe. Boat rides will also be available all evening. 3 p.m. to 11 p.m., no cover. Call 480-756-0508.
Correction, 4:50 p.m., 5/2/2016: This article originally misstated the number of Metro Phoenix locations of the Fired Pie restaurant chain. The Taco Guild listing was also updated with more information regarding a cocktail contest.