Crowds wave to parade floats from the side of the street.
Crowds wave to parade floats from the side of the street during the King William Parade in 2018. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

With more than 100 events on the calendar for Fiesta 2019, we know it can get pretty overwhelming. We’ve picked out some must-attend events for you here to ease the decision-making process. Have fun, be safe, and viva Fiesta!

Fiesta Fiesta at Hemisfair

Fiesta officially starts with this celebration extraordinaire at Hemisfair. Sample local culinary talents’ fare, shop local craft vendors, listen to live music, and more at this family-friendly event. Chief Brian West also returns with his chef friends for VIP party Taste of the Republic (tickets required). Bring your medals and get ready to pick up more from your favorite Fiesta events!
Thursday, April 18, 3-9 p.m.
Hemisfair, 434 S. Alamo St.
Free

Crowning of Rey Feo

Mariachis, folklórico dancers, and San Antonio community members will gather Friday to see the 71st Rey Feo crowned. Meet members of Rey Feo’s royal court, past Reyes Feos, and other Fiesta royalty while you celebrate the new king.
Friday, April 19, 5:30-6:30 p.m.
Arneson Theatre, 418 Villita St.
Free

Senior Fiesta

The one official Fiesta event for seniors 55 and older is hosted by the Catholic Charities Archdiocese of San Antonio. Families can enjoy live entertainment, door prizes, dancing, and more. Vendors will be on site to provide information about senior engagement programs, activities, and wellness. Have questions? Call Catholic Charities at 210-222-1294.
Friday, April 19, 9 a.m.-2 p.m.
Wonderland of the Americas Mall, 4522 Fredericksburg Road
Free

Walk for Autism & Superhero 5K

Any Baby Can is hosting its 15th annual Walk for Autism and Superhero 5K on Saturday, April 20. All proceeds go toward family programs such as autism services and counseling. There will also be food trucks, live entertainment, and more at this family- and autism-friendly event. The 2-mile walk costs $15, though kids 10 years and younger can participate free of charge. The 5K race entry fee is $30. Online registration ends April 18, and you can register here.
Saturday, April 20, 7 a.m.-12:30 p.m.
Helotes Cornyval Grounds, 12210 Leslie Road, Helotes 
$0-$30

El Rey Fido Coronation

El Rey Fido Coronation celebrates the many months of fundraising that local participants and their beloved dogs do to support the San Antonio Humane Society. The event started in 2002, but it was made an official Fiesta event just five years ago. The event is open to all, especially costumed pups. There will be folklórico dances and royal doggie dress. The dogs who raised the most money for the Humane Society will be honored by getting to walk the stage.
Saturday, April 20, 10-11 a.m.
Sheraton Gunter Hotel, 203 E. Houston St.
Free

Mission Reach Flotilla Fiesta

The fourth annual Mission Reach Flotilla Festival offers family-friendly activities like boating and kayaking, medal sales, food and beer, and more. The Flotilla Festival aims to help San Antonians enjoy the river and includes a water parade at 11 a.m. with an 80s theme and kayaking activities in the afternoon. All events are free.
Saturday, April 20, 11 a.m.-5 p.m.
Mission County Park, 6030 Padre Drive
Free

Chanclas y Cervezas

This new Fiesta event lets San Antonians put their chancla-related skills to the test. The event asks competitors to wield the chancla (flip-flop sandal) in throwing, swinging, and decorating. Enjoy live entertainment, craft stations, food vendors, and of course cervezas from around San Antonio and the world. Parking and admission is free, while food and drink can be purchased at the Greenline Park.
Saturday, April 20, 2-9 p.m.
The Greenline Park, 2532 Sidney Brooks
Free

Investiture of King Antonio

The Texas Cavaliers crown the new King Antonio on Saturday, April 20. This group of more than 600 business, civic and community leaders annually elect a new King Antonio, who is then publicly crowned in front of the Alamo. They elected their first Hispanic King Antonio in 2017, the organization’s 95th king. The Texas Cavaliers group was founded in 1926 and has given more than $6 million through their charitable foundation.
Saturday, April 20, 6-7:30 p.m.
Alamo Plaza, 300 Alamo Plaza
Free

King Antonio XCV Michael A. Casillas crowns King Antonio XCVI Richard Sparr.
King Antonio XCV Michael A. Casillas crowns King Antonio XCVI Richard Sparr at the Alamo in 2018. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

Piñatas in the Barrio

Come see the unveiling of the “Barrio’s Largest Piñata.” Rey Feo crowns Senior Citizen King and Queen of the Barrio, who then participate in the Battle of the Flowers Parade and the Flambeau Parade. Have fun with live entertainment, food, and more. Admission is free, and any proceeds will go toward projects and scholarships primarily in West San Antonio.
Saturday, April 20, noon-10 p.m.
Guadalupe Theatre, 723 S. Brazos St.
Free

A Day in Old Mexico & Charreada

Experience the equestrian skills of Old Mexico on April 21 and April 28. The Asociación de Charros de San Antonio brings pageantry and high-level horsemanship to this fun and educational event. Charreada, similar to rodeos, evolved from its roots in the 19th century, where it was used to prepare horses and riders for war. Adult tickets cost $20, senior citizens and military tickets cost $15, while children 6 to 12 years old pay $5.
Sunday, April 21, and Sunday, April 28, 3 p.m.
Rancho del Charro, 6126 Padre Drive
$5-$20

The Texas Cavaliers River Parade

Gaze upon the river as more than 50 floats glide by in this year’s Texas Cavaliers River Parade, with the theme “It’s Showtime in San Antonio.” Leon Coffee, who was inducted in the Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame last year, will serve as the grand marshal. The Texas Cavaliers promise live music, celebrities, and lights – and King Antonio, waving from his custom-made King’s Cruiser. Proceeds go to local children’s charities through the Texas Cavaliers’ charitable foundation. Buy tickets here.
Monday, April 22, 7-9 p.m.
River Walk
$14-$30

Fiesta Tech Trek

The San Antonio Chamber of Commerce puts on its third annual Tech Trek on Tuesday, April 23. Explore the Tech District and visit participating tech companies to get an inside look at the city’s tech scene. Tech Trek brings together college students, tech professionals, business owners, and entrepreneurs.
Tuesday, April 23, 5-8 p.m.
San Antonio Downtown Tech District, 110 E. Houston St.
Free

Fiesta Cornyation

Leave the kids at home for this one – Fiesta Cornyation is back with its adult-oriented satirical review of local, state, national, and international current events. The nonprofit has donated more than $2 million back to the community and is dedicated to enriching San Antonians who live with HIV or are affected by HIV. Tickets range from $15 to $100 and can be purchased at the Majestic/Empire Box Office, Ticketmaster, and The Fiesta Store. There are two shows each night at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.
Tuesday, April 23-Thursday, April 25
Charline McCombs Empire Theatre, 226 N. St. Mary’s St.
$15-$100

Actors perform in Cornyation at Charline McCombs Empire Theatre during Fiesta.
Actors perform during the 2017 Cornyation at Charline McCombs Empire Theatre. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

Ford Mariachi Festival

Watch local middle- and high-school students perform mariachi music while floating down the river on barges. It’s a perfect way to spend your evenings during Fiesta, and you can revel in the music for free.
Tuesday, April 23-Thursday, April 25, 7:30-9 p.m.
River Walk
Free

Coronation of the Queen of the Order of the Alamo

See a lavish display of Fiesta royalty at this coronation. Her Royal Highness the Princess and visiting and in-town Duchesses will make their full-court bows before the coronation of Her Gracious Majesty, the Queen. Enjoy a full orchestral accompaniment to this dazzling affair, as all of the royalty wear elaborately designed and decorated gowns sparkling with beads, crystals, and jewels. Musicians and other entertainers take the stage after the royal court is seated. Tickets can be found here.
Wednesday, April 24, 8-10 p.m.
Majestic Theatre, 224 E. Houston St.
$25-$139

Fiesta Gartenfest

Head to the Beethoven Halls and Garden for German entertainment and gemütlichkeit – that cozy feeling when you spend some time enjoying good food and good company. Beethoven Maennerchor is bringing back its classic Fiesta event with German food, beer, and a 50-piece concert band to add to the festivities; the dance band plays until midnight. El Rey Feo visits on Wednesday and King Antonio stops by on Thursday. Tickets cost $10 at the gate, but children 12 and under can enter for free.
Wednesday, April 24-Friday, April 26, 5 p.m.-midnight
Beethoven Halls and Garden, 422 Pereida St.
$0-$10

NIOSA

One of the most popular Fiesta events each year, A Night in Old San Antonio – aka NIOSA – benefits the San Antonio Conservation Society. The four-night festival in La Villita boasts more than 200 food and drink booths, 14 live musical acts, and festive decorations in 15 themed areas including Mission Trail, Arneson Theatre, China Town, and more. Tickets cost $15 at the gate and $12 in advance here. Children 12 years old and younger are free if accompanied by an adult.
Tuesday, April 23- Friday, April 26, 5:30-10:30 p.m.
La Villita, 418 Villita St.
$0-$15

(From left) Alejandro Arruti, Roberto Cortez, and Isolde Amador enjoy their food and drinks at NIOSA.
(From left) Alejandro Arruti, Roberto Cortez, and Isolde Amador enjoy their food and drinks at NIOSA in 2017. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

Fiesta San Fernando

Visit the historic San Fernando Cathedral to celebrate Fiesta San Fernando with arts and crafts booths, live entertainment, food, and ice cold beer. The cathedral will also hold Mass at noon on Wednesday and Thursday and at 8 a.m. Friday and Saturday. San Fernando is also a great spot to see the Battle of Flowers Parade on Friday and Flambeau Parade on Saturday.
Thursday, April 25-Saturday, April 27, 11 a.m.-midnight
San Fernando Cathedral, 115 W. Main Plaza
Free

Battle of Flowers Parade

A Fiesta classic, the Battle of Flowers Parade honors the fighters of the Alamo, the victory of San Jacinto, and the diversity and heritage of Texas and the U.S. The parade has graced the city every year since 1891, except during the two World Wars. The parade is the only one in the U.S. to be produced entirely by volunteer women and gives nonprofits the chance to raise money by selling more than 45,000 seats along the parade route. This year’s theme is “For the Love of Texas,” and country star Pat Green will serve as grand marshal. Buy tickets here or at the Fiesta Store.
Friday, April 26, 9:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Parade route, starting at East Grayson Street and Broadway
$12-$25

Fiesta Pooch Parade

Bring your dogs and bring them in costume – the annual Fiesta Pooch Parade is back! The 2.6-mile march gives dog owners an opportunity to air out their pets’ best outfits while also supporting Therapy Animals of San Antonio. The costume contest starts at 8:15 a.m., and the parade starts after the contest around 9:15 a.m. Organizers are awarding costume prizes for for Best in Show, Top Dog, Most Creative, Most Patriotic, Best Fiesta Flair, and Best Matched Human and Dog. Preregistration costs $25 per individual and $30 per family, while on-site registration costs $30 per person and $35 per family. Preregistration ends April 25.
Saturday, April 27, 7:45-11 a.m.
Alamo Heights Swimming Pool, 250 Viesca St.
$25-$35

King William Fair and Parade

Bring your family to the King William Historic District on Saturday, April 27, for family-friendly activities and a parade that starts at 9 a.m. and meanders through 2 miles of the neighborhood. There will be arts and craft vendors, live entertainment, food and beverage booths, and a Kids Kingdom play area. Enjoy it all with the backdrop of historic homes and beautiful gardens. Tickets cost $13 in advance and $15 at the gate. Children 12 years old and younger can enter for free.
Saturday, April 27, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
King William Historic District, 122 Madison St.
$0-$15

Fiesta Flambeau Parade

The 2019 Fiesta Flambeau Parade bears the theme “Reflections of Music Past” and will be led by the University of Texas Longhorn Band. Watch floats, marching units, local bands, bands from out of town and out of state, and more in this illuminated parade to close out Fiesta. Singer and dancer Chubby Checker serves as this year’s Fiesta Flambeau grand marshal. The route is 2.6 miles through downtown San Antonio and is watched yearly by more than 750,000 in person and another 1.5 million on TV. Find more information on tickets here or call 210-364-5349. Seating ranges from $18.50 to $35.
Saturday, April 27, 7-10:30 p.m.
Parade route, starting at East Grayson Street and Broadway
$18.50-$35

A parade participant high-fives a young boy in the crowd.
A dancer high-fives a young boy in the crowd during the Fiesta Flambeau Parade in 2018. Credit: Bonnie Arbittier / San Antonio Report

Chili Queens Cook-Off

Competitors will put forth their chili recipes to be tasted and judged at Bonham Exchange on Sunday, April 28. Each chili must be represented by a queen. But unlike the typical chili cook-off, the queens representing each chili will strive to be the tackiest queen there and win the Whoochie award. Judging begins at 5 p.m. This year also marks the first cook-off since owner Kenneth Garrett died in February, and organizers will honor him at the event. Must be 18 years or older to enter.
Sunday, April 28, 3-8 p.m.
Bonham Exchange, 411 Bonham St.
Free

Jackie Wang

Jackie Wang is the local government reporter at the San Antonio Report.