Three ways to chow down on Mexican Independence Day

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Although Cinco de Mayo has become a major holiday in tequila-loving cities across the United States, the real Mexican holiday is Mexican Independence Day, which is celebrated on September 15 or September 16 (back in 1810, Father Miguel Hidalgo rallied the troops with his church bells at midnight between those two days).

Or both, in the case of Adelitas Cocina y Cantina, one of three places where you can get your fill of food and fun on Mexican Independence Day.

See also: Adelitas Cocina taking over former home of Bistro One and 3 Monkeys

Brian Rossi opened Adelita's earlier this year, after declaring his own independence from restaurants he'd managed across town and finally starting his own place. On Sunday, Adelitas will host a mariachi brunch from noon to 2 p.m., with face-painting (by Amanda King, the same artist who did the restaurant's murals) and a $4 Bloody Mary bar. There will also be $4 oyster shooters and $4 blue nectar margaritas, and those deals will continue when the Broncos game starts at 2:25 p.m. (Lest we forget, any Broncos game day is a major holiday.) And on Monday, September 16, Adelitas will offer a four-course dinner paired with tequila cocktails for $45. For more information, call 303-778-1294.

A three-day celebration will be held at La Sandia on September 14-16. There will be $10 Patron flights, along with other specialty holiday cocktails. For an interesting meal, they are running a Chile en Nogada specialty. In Spanish, nogada translates to walnut, describing the white, English walnut sauce in which the dish is smothered in. In addition to the stuffed chili and pomegranate seeds the dish is topped with -- you have an edible Mexican flag at the table. If chilies are more your style, La Sandia is also running a Chili Relleno Festival, which ends on September 15, each relleno dish is inspired by different regions of Mexico.

Lastly, if you so happen to feel the need to exert in some physical activity after all of the tequila and chilies, check out the 20th annual "El Grito" 5K run/walk on September 15. This walk will begin and end at the Buckhorn Exchange. The entry fee is $20 and provides participants with a race t-shirt, post-race fiesta loaded with breakfast burritos, beer and Latin tunes. Sign up begins at 7:30 a.m., with the runners taking off at 9 a.m. and the walkers at 9:05. Visit http://elgrito5k.org/ for more details.

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