ADA — Ada Main Street’s annual Pat Taylor Memorial Parade of Lights – a holiday tradition in thedowntown district takes place tonight at 7. Theme for this year’s parade is Christmas Throughout the Ages. The parade will feature over 50 lighted floats, walking groups, bands, cars, and horses, and will stretch for blocks down Main Street.
Parade of Lights will be led this year by Hipolito “Polo” and Teresa Vazquez, owners of Polo's Mexican Restaurant. “We wanted to honor one of Ada’s long time business owners and someone who has given back to the Ada community,” said Gina Stowers, Ada Main Street director, said. “We are proud to have them as this year’s grand marshals.”
Hipolito “Polo” and Teresa Vazquez migrated to Oklahoma from Mexico. Polo was working at a restaurant in Oklahoma City when he followed a friend to Ada in pursuit of better work. He found himself working at a local Mexican restaurant where he learned the different aspects of running a restaurant. During his tenure working at the restaurant, he went back to Mexico, married Teresa and brought her back to Ada. Six years later, they decided to go out on their own and rented out the Juliana Coffee shop. Things went so well, that a year later they opened their own restaurant at its current address of 219 W. Main.
As the business progressed, Polo and Teresa decided to buy the building next door and opened Polo’s Embassy. More than 10 years later they bought the building to the west of the Mexican restaurant in order to expand the kitchen and house a banquet room.
Since opening up their restaurant in Ada, they have opened restaurants in other neighboring towns that included Seminole, Durant, McAlester, and Ardmore. They also experimented with Mexican fast food and opened Mexigo which was located on Mississippi.
Polo’s Authentic Mexican Restaurant was featured in Southern Living magazine in 2004 and has regularly been named the Reader’s Choice Award for the Best Mexican Food in town. Polo’s currently employs 43 part time and full-time employees. Polo has recently been named the 2010 Distinguished International Citizen of Ada.
Polo and Teresa have strived to contribute to the community that has provided them with so much support. Polo’s is a member of the local Chamber of Commerce, Ada Jobs Foundation, and Ada Main Street.
Polo and Teresa have four children that are currently living in Ada: Richard Vazquez, Rosa Stout, Yolande Vazquez and Roy Vazquez. They are also grandparents of six: Cesar Gonzalez, Nicholas Vazquez, Alyssandra Vazquez, Faith Stout, Steven Stout, and David Stout.