Aside from NBA playoffs and Maverick Music Festival, April in San Antonio is distinguished by a single, historically impressive and wildly colorful event: Fiesta.
Fiesta originated in 1891 as a commemoratory event to the lives lost in the Battle of the Alamo and San Jacinto.
The very first Fiesta celebration drew remarkable crowds, and featured a single parade of horse-drawn carriages and flower-laden women. Over the years, Fiesta became a staple of the Alamo City, eventually expanding into a week-long and citywide celebration funded by the Fiesta San Antonio Commission.
2016 commemorates the 125th Fiesta Celebration, which began last Thursday, April 14.
However, if you haven’t gotten a chance to attend a Fiesta-related event, fear not; the festivities continue until this Sunday, April 24. Here are a few events taking place throughout our beautiful city through which you can “¡Viva Fiesta!”
April 20: Cornyation @ Charline McCombs Empire Theater (226 N. St. Mary’s St.)
Since 1951, Cornyation has provided San Antonio with a glamorous, yet unfiltered outlet for political rebuttal. Things got so outrageous that in 1964 the event was shut down for nearly 15 years. However, Cornyation stood the test of time and is now an official event of Fiesta® San Antonio. Check out Cornyation this Thursday – at either 7:30 p.m. or 10:00 p.m. – for acts “American Clown Car,” a GOP mockery sketch, “Baby’s First Foot Long,” a Jared Fogle rundown and, of course, tons of glitter. Tickets are available online and at the Empire Theater box office.
April 21: PACfest @ Palo Alto College (1400 W. Villaret Blvd.)
If you’ve ever wanted to see a carne asada contest, PACfest is certainly the place for you. Held at Palo Alto College, PACfest delivers family-friendly fun, cultural celebration and educational encouragement – all in the spirit of Fiesta. In addition to the #FiestaGrilldown competition, PACfest will host musical acts AJ Castillo and Los Master Plus, among others, a Chill Zone – where attendees can learn about Palo Alto College amenities, a Game Zone open from 3-7 p.m. and complete with multiple bounce houses and a 9:45 p.m. fireworks show. Admission to PACfest is $5 for adults, and parking is free.
April 22: Battle of the Flowers Parade
The only parade in the United States to be fully produced and organized by an all-women volunteer crew happens here in San Antonio at Battle of the Flowers Parade. In fact, the Battle of the Flowers Parade was the first parade to celebrate Fiesta San Antonio way back in 1891. Today floats, antique cars, businesses, Fiesta royalty and military personnel all march through the streets – a time-honored tradition of the Battle of the Flowers Parade. This Friday, the parade begins at 12:30 p.m. and tickets can be purchased online.
April 23: Fiesta Flambeau Parade (Broadway and Grayson to Santa Rosa)
Join 750,000 San Antonians for the biggest night parade in the country – the Fiesta Flambeau Parade. This year’s theme is “Long Live Texas,” through which the streets of downtown San Antonio will be filled with the musical accompaniment of the University of Texas Longhorn Band, in addition to local illuminated floats, performances and patrons. The Fiesta Flambeau Parade kicks off at 6:30 p.m. on Saturday, and bleacher tickets to the parade can be found online.