A soggy Cinco de Mayo in St Paul

A few May Day parades are planned for this weekend, but if the crowd at St Paul’s Cinco de Mayo parade Saturday is an indicator, many people may stay away because of the weather.

It was a rainy 2013 Cinco de Mayo parade Saturday in St Paul. MPR Photo/Nikki Tundel

It usually draws thousands of people, but this time the crowds were thin as Mexican dancers and marching bands went by. Like many parts of Minnesota, it was damp on the west end, with temps in the 40s. That’s 20 degrees below normal, according to the National Weather Service in Chanhassen.cinco 2

Steve Campos, 57,  has attended the Cinco de Mayo parade since he was a kid. Now he serves as a volunteer judge, assessing participants community spirit and enthusiasm in portraying their heritage. He didn’t mind sitting out in the cold rain.

“It is always worth it,” Campos said. “When you’re older to give back to the community, but as younger to see the mentoring that’s going on. So that way it just cultivates, so the young people become older, come back and then they teach their young people same thing.”

But Campos, a retired member of the Minnesota National Guard, says next year he’ll be sure to bring a hot thermos of coffee.

cinco 3There was another lifelong parade-goer just a few steps down Cesar Chavez Street. Miguel Zamora said he has been attending as long as he could remember.

“Usually we have nice weather. This is bad,” he said. “Last year was rainy and cold pretty much like this but years prior to that, it’s about the upper 60s, low 70s with the sunshine. Sun comes out, people come out, you have a good time. This is too cold.”

The National Weather Service says high pressure will start building tonight, possibly leading to dense fog — especially over areas with snow from southeast Minnesota up toward northwest Wisconsin. Next week temperatures will return back to near normal, with mainly dry conditions on Monday and Tuesday. A slow-moving front may bring the rain back Tuesday night.