A celebration of Mexican heritage, Cinco de Mayo commemorates the Mexican army's underdog triumph over the French Empire at the Battle of Puebla. In honor of this historic event, millions of people celebrate Mexico's proud heritage, while taking the time to relax or party with their friends. If you're throwing a Cinco de Mayo fiesta, keep it cheery and fun, while demonstrating respect for the holiday's origins.

Fly the Mexican flag
The tricolor flag of Mexico (Bandera de México) is green, white and red with the national coat of arms in the center. Display it during a Cinco de Mayo party. It is perhaps the single must-have decoration for the party.

Use green, white and red
Incorporate the colors of the Mexican flag into as many decorations as possible. Just as you would add red, white and blue to a Fourth of July party, you should make prominent use of green, white and red. This can include the color of your plates, utensils, streamers, signs or Mexican pottery, such as multicolored vases.

Mexican carpet for table runner
Using a Mexican carpet or blanket for a table runner is a fast and easy way to decorate. Mexican textiles are iconic and beautiful, with simple, yet evocative patterns and colors.

Brighten the table with food
Mexican food is delicious to the taste-buds and can be pleasant to the eyes. Keep the colors bright and lively. Courtney Dial, founder of Pizzazerie.com, suggests, "Use food to brighten the table. Bright green limes, fire-hued bell peppers and red tomato salsa [can] punch up any table-scape when placed in a glass vase or bowl."

Maracas and pinatas
Nothing says fiesta like pinatas or maracas. These Mexican party items can be central to your gathering. Give your guests the opportunity to join in the music and festivities.

Bottles of tequila
Since many people like to drink at parties, consider supplying some quality alcohol. Tequila is the go-to drink for many on Cinco de Mayo. Aside from providing a beverage to enjoy, tequila can factor into your decorating. Andrea Correale, president of Elegant Affairs says, "You can place individual bottles of tequila on each table with shot glasses and limes with tons of Mexican soda."

Remember to be respectful
There is nothing wrong with imbibing tequila responsibly, enjoying Mexican food or dressing in traditional Mexican clothes. But it is important to remember that Cinco de Mayo is a holiday that commemorates a proud moment for a nation.

One excellent way to celebrate Cinco de Mayo is to learn about the holiday's history. Just as you would with the Fourth of July, take a little time to comprehend and appreciate the significance of Cinco de Mayo. This is a great opportunity to learn and expand your mind.