Lufkin's Cinco de Mayo celebration boosts local businesses

LUFKIN, TX (AP) - More than 100 vendors attended the Cinco de Mayo celebration in Lufkin, an increase from last year's 90.

The event which saw close to 10,000 in attendance is more than just a day of fun for the vendors. Some, like Elvia Avila, say that the business they get during this six hour long celebration truly makes a difference.

"We can make a lot of money which helps you a lot," Avila said.

Avila was a first-time vendor at Saturday's Cinco de Mayo celebration, but she hoped her Mexican treats would attract customers.

"It's very important because it helps me a lot," Avila said. "And, I have all the people coming to see how we can enjoy all these goodies over here."

And, from what she saw, she'll be making an appearance next year, too.

"Your business can go up every year when they do this," Avila said.

And, Avila's not the only newcomer enjoying the crowds.

"I think everybody's been busy so far. This is my first year, I love it," said vendor, Richard Spring.

The event also brings in the families and friends of those competing in the Miss Cinco de Mayo scholarship competition.

"This event has really gotten a great audience," Spring said. "It's got a great turn out. They come out for the benefit for the scholarships for the Hispanic community. And, it really helps everybody out here. All the vendors seem to be busy."

But, for some longtime vendors, like Irenae Mendoza, the event has become a necessity.

"It's very important because out of these we feed the family," Mendoza said. "It's to help the family. This is how we survive."

And, then there are those, like Rudy de la Rosa, who come back for the fun of it.

"We do it for more of a family event," said del la Rosa. "So, sometimes we make money, sometimes we break even, but just coming out here is the fun part."

The money that the vendors paid to reserve a spot in the event goes towards the winner of the Miss Cinco de Mayo competition.

Copyright 2018 KTRE. All rights reserved.