Mission Pavilion in Mission County Park late Saturday afternoon was teeming with hundreds of people wielding tasty treats and craft beer, flocking to the stage to listen to the local lineup of musical groups for Mission Pachanga. The free music festival was an all-day homage to the sounds of San Antonio, and was part of the inaugural World Heritage Festival, a celebration marking the one year anniversary of the UNESCO World Heritage designation of the city’s Spanish-colonial Missions.
As the day was sunny and hot, attendees took refuge under one of the several pavilion covers or under the main pavilion where the day’s musical acts played their hearts out until 11 p.m.
Acoustic Latin fusion artist Maya Guirao kicked off the festivities with a lively, intimate set on the Music Heritage Stage that welcomed the hundreds of bikers who participated in the morning’s leisurely mission-to-mission bike ride, where they got a dose of exercise and history about each of the World Heritage sites they visited on their journey. Guitarist Rudi Harst followed, providing the idyllic soundtrack for the sunny and family-friendly day of culture, history, and community.
The rest of the afternoon featured artists on the Mission Main Stage, starting with some Westside sound by Lil’ Henry Tribute Band with Rudy Tee Gonzales, followed by local jazz genius Doc Watkins, indie-rock quintet Black Market Club, and hip hop performer Greg G.
fishermen took the stage when the sun began to set, drawing more and more San Antonians out into the night of music with much cooler temperatures. With each act, the crowds grew. Femina-X was next, followed by Volcán and Nina Diaz, who closed out the night with a bang.
Caitlin Whaley and Nicole Hammond are new to San Antonio and came out to Mission Pachanga to get to know the rapidly changing area and get a taste of San Antonio culture.
“(Mission Pachanga) has attracted such a diverse crowd,” Hammond said, “and it’s cool to see more of the community. I think it’s great to just bring people together like this.”
Top image: Daniela Riojas performs during Mission Pachanga. Photo by Michael Cirlos.