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Puerto Vallarta's Centennial Bumps May Fest Up a Notch

May 23, 2018

The 2018 Festival Cultural de Mayo will offer a variety of free music & dance performances at El Faro del Malecón from 7-10 pm every night from May 26-31. Click HERE to download the schedule in .pdf format.

Puerto Vallarta, Jalisco, Mexico - From May 26-31, 2018, Puerto Vallarta will continue celebrating its centennial as a municipality and 50th year as a city during the Festival Cultural de Mayo, an annual celebration that includes cultural events, photo and art exhibitions and free dance and music performances every night.

Organized by the Culture Institute of Vallarta, with the full support of the Puerto Vallarta Tourism Board, the Ministry of Culture of Jalisco and the Municipal Council of Sports, the May Fest 2018 main stage will be located next to the city's original lighthouse, now on the Malecón seaside promenade.

The lineup will feature a number of local acts, such as the award-winning Xiutla Folkloric ballet, the Salty Paw Jazz Orchestra, the Alas singing school and performance trio La Boquita. International performers will take the main stage, as well. Grammy-winning group La Santa Cecilia - which earned critical acclaim for its mix of genres such as Cumbia, Bossa Nova and Bolero - will be the closing act on May 26, while Colombian group Bomba Estereo will close out the festivities on May 30.

May Fest 2018 will conclude on Thursday, May 31 with the cutting of a double-anniversary cake to the sounds of a Mariachi band. Closing honors will go to Mexican superstar Pepe Aguilar, to be followed by a pyrotechnic show and performance by Sonido Satanas, a native Guadalajara group whose mix of Cumbia rhythms with other musical genres never fails to get listeners on their feet and dancing.

Other activities are taking place in several Puerto Vallarta's neighborhoods. The Centenary Expo continues at Marina Vallarta through June 3, featuring international exhibitors from Algeria, Cuba, Peru, Colombia, Uruguay, Syria, Turkey, Lebanon, Russia, Tunisia, Egypt, Panama, Thailand, Iran, Ghana and Ecuador. Visitors will be able to purchase crafts and sample regional and international cuisine.

The Museo del Cuale on Cuale Island will join in the festivities with an exhibition of the archaeological remains of a Galeón de Manila, or the Manila galleon (also known as La Nao de China, or the "China Ship"), which illustrates the anthropological, commercial and cultural ties between Puerto Vallarta and the Far East. The exhibition has the backing of the National Institute of Anthropology and History (INAH) and the San Diego Fort Museum.

And, starting on May 25, two photographic installations recalling key social, economic and cultural events that have shaped Puerto Vallarta since its founding in 1918 will be exhibited on the Malecón.

Puerto Vallarta has been celebrating its birthday the entire year. Major local events joining in on the Centennial festivities included: the MEXorc Regatta in March, which featured a Centennial Race from Los Arcos to the Malecón; the second edition of the Down Vallarta urban bike race that was held May 12 & 13; and the inaugural Puerto Vallarta Open, a professional tennis competition that took place from April 30 through May 5.

This year's Vallarta Pride celebrations, which continue through May 27 with a '100 Reasons to Celebrate' theme, still has plenty of concerts, parades, parties to come. Not to mention the White Party Neon Circus, complete with clowns and churros, to be held at Mantamar Beach Club on May 26 from 6 pm until 1 am.

Other exciting events are being worked on and will be confirmed in the coming months. For more information about May Fest 2018, visit  To download a historical overview of Puerto Vallarta in .pdf format, click HERE.

BN Editor's Note: If you are fortunate enough to be in Puerto Vallarta during the last week of May, you will definitely have a wonderful and memorable experience. In addition to the city's 100th anniversary celebrations, you can also enjoy the Vallarta Pride 2018 celebrations, which end on the 27th, and the 14th edition of Vallarta Restaurant Week, which runs through June 10th at 59 Banderas Bay area restaurants.