Panelists join the San Antonio Report on Wednesday to talk legislative issues, the state of startups, a district bond proposal, young creativity, and more.

The third annual San Antonio CityFest, a virtual urban ideas festival, runs through Friday. Its weeklong lineup of events, panel discussions, and entertainment features an array of topics including public health, business and job growth, transportation and development, and recovery from the economic and health crisis of the coronavirus pandemic.

All CityFest 2020 programming is free and open to the public, with pre-registration required. Once attendees are registered they will receive an email giving them access to the festival web app. Registered attendees are also invited to download the Whova app for more opportunities to network, ask the panelists questions, and take the festival anywhere they go.

9 a.m.

For Wednesday’s first event, “Thinking Big with Texas 2036: Countdown to the Bicentennial“, Robert Rivard, San Antonio Report Editor and Publisher, will moderate a discussion with Tom Luce, Texas 2036 founder and chairman; Margaret Spelling, Texas 2036 president and chief executive officer; and A.J. Rodriguez Texas 2036, executive vice president, about the recent survey data and rising policy issues that may create challenges for Texans in the upcoming legislative session.

10:30 a.m.

San Antonio Report Business and Technology Reporter Lindsey Carnett will conduct “A Pulse Check on Startups” that have been affected by the coronavirus pandemic. Speakers Alexandra Frey, 80/20 Foundation executive director; Thu Nguyen, 80/20 Foundation; and Andi Littlejohn, EPIcenterUS director of the EPIcenter Energy Incubator and Accelerator will offer their insights on challenges and opportunities presented during this economic downturn.


San Antonio ISD Superintendent Pedro Martinez, SAISD trustee Christina Martinez, and Blue Ribbon Committee co-chair Victoria Moreno-Herrera will join San Antonio Report Education Reporter Emily Donaldson to talk about the district’s $1.3 billion bond proposal. District voters will weigh in on the largest bond package in the city’s history in November.

5 p.m.

Kid DJ DJango returns for his second San Antonio CityFest performance. And a conversation moderated by San Antonio Report Arts and Culture Reporter Nicholas Frank follows, as AM Project Creative Director Louis Cardenas speaks about how his craft cultivates confidence and creativity.

5:30 p.m.

Students were sent to learn from home last spring when coronavirus began spreading in Texas. Families grappled with distance learning and continue to attempt at-home lessons. What worked well and what didn’t?

Difficulties in Distance Learning” panelists Kat Medendorp, Northside American Federation of Teachers secretary; Maribel Gardea, MindShiftEd co-founder; and Mike Villarreal, University of Texas at San Antonio – Urban Education Institute director and assistant professor, will examine the transformational shift in this hour-long discussion moderated by Donaldson.

The full schedule is available here.


Samantha Ruvalcaba, who grew up in San Antonio, is a Shiner intern and junior at St. Mary's University studying international and global studies with a minor in communications.