The deadline for final applications to be an official partner organization of the San Antonio Tricentennial Celebration has been extended to March 1, 2017.

“The number and diversity of applications we have already received has been fantastic,” Tricentennial Commission CEO Edward Benavides stated in a news release Monday. “We decided to extend the application deadline to accommodate the enthusiasm in the community about being part of San Antonio’s Tricentennial celebrations.”

The Tricentennial Commission encourages local organizations to apply online. The categories for events and activities include arts and culture, culinary arts, education, history, military and patriotism, music, parades, and economic initiatives occurring during the 2018 year. Events preceding 2018 may also qualify if they relate directly to the city’s 300-year history.

“This is a tremendous opportunity for all of us in the community to come together and really celebrate and appreciate who we are and the vast amount of art and culture and heritage that we all share,” Benavides told the Rivard Report.

In a series of events running the entire calendar year of 2018, the Tricentennial aims to celebrate San Antonio’s past, present, and future by tapping into the energy of a broad array of community partners. In September, the Tricentennial Commission announced 44 partners already selected to contribute, but with organizations like Fiesta San Antonio planning numerous activities of their own, Benavides counts events at over 100 already.

“Organizations should think big and broad as to what they do and how they contribute to San Antonio – reflected within the arts, within our culture, within our heritage – and what they would like to share,” Benavides said.

Benavides expects most applicants to be accepted, as was the case with the May and August partner applications. Those not approved will have an opportunity to resubmit in response to feedback.

“The goal is that we complete this process so that in early 2017 we can begin marketing and promoting everything that will happen in 2018 so that people can be prepared and excited,” Benavides added.

The Tricentennial Celebration will focus on four marque initiatives: History and education, arts and culture, community service, and week of commemorative celebrations. Events will include symposiums, reenactments, public arts unveilings, celebratory performing arts pieces, historical walking and biking tours, and numerous community service opportunities.

The anniversary will coincide with a number of major city developments including the unveiling of the San Pedro Creek’s first phase of improvement, Hemisfair’s Civic Park, a revitalized Lincoln Park on the Eastside, and other projects “still in the works.”

This is an international moment for San Antonio similar to what happened nearly 50 years ago with Hemisfair,” Benavides said. He expects the the Tricentennial will again “put us on the map as a really cosmopolitan, progressive city with a vast amount of opportunity and rich history.

“We find ourselves in a very unique situation where we (can) highlight and acknowledge and respect our history and then use that in how we move forward for the next 300 years in San Antonio.”

Daniel Kleifgen

Daniel Kleifgen graduated from Cornell University with a bachelor’s degree in English and philosophy. A native of Pittsburgh, Pa., he came to San Antonio in 2013 as a Teach For America corps member.