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Fiesta with Kids: A Guide to Family-friendly Fiesta® Events

Fiesta® is April 20–30 this year. That’s 11 days of parties and festivals for a cause. Of the countless Fiesta-themed events taking place this month, we’ve put together a list of more than 20 events that are geared toward kids and families. 

Helpful tips for Fiesta:

  • Tickets for many events, including the parades, can be purchased at The Fiesta Store® on Broadway.
  • Don’t forget: thanks to Fiesta—er, the Battle of San Jacinto—most kids have a school holiday on Friday, April 28.
  • Make transportation and parking a little easier by using VIA Park & Ride. Check the website for schedules.
  • For the full Fiesta schedule and all the details, visit the official site.
  • Stay hydrated!

Thursday, April 20

Fiesta® Fiesta, 5:00–9:00 P.M. at Hemisfair—The official opening of Fiesta 2017. Enjoy live entertainment and greet official Fiesta royalty and special guests. Buy, sell, or trade Fiesta pins and medals at Pin Pandemonium. Join the fun as cascarónes are broken and the crowd proclaims “Viva Fiesta!” to kick off the Alamo City’s biggest, best festival. Free.

Friday, April 21

Alamo Heights Night, 5:30–11:30 P.M. at University of the Incarnate Word—Event will highlight food from some of San Antonio’s leading restaurants and caterers. This family-friendly atmosphere delivers live entertainment on multiple stages and a fireworks display at 10:00 P.M. The carnival midway will captivate kids of all ages with activities such as laser tag, rock climbing, hamster balls, slides, rides, face/hair painting, and more. Multiple free parking and Park & Ride locations. Admission for adults is $12; ages 12–17 is $5; active duty and reserve military and children under 12 are free.

Saturday, April 22

Any Baby Can’s 13th Annual Walk for Autism & Superhero 5K, 7:00 A.M.–2:00 P.M. at Helotes Festival Grounds—Help support families raising individuals with autism. Show your support for an individual with autism by making banners, signs, or creating a team t-shirt. Enjoy a day of activities for all abilities, check out family-friendly performances, sample delicious food trucks, and visit with more than 100 community resources! New this year is the Teen Area, featuring activities for older individuals and much more. Registration for the 5K is $25 and $15 for the walk.

Southwest Olympic Fiesta, 8:30 A.M.–2:30 P.M. at SWISD Spring Sports Complex—Southwest Olympic Fiesta is a track and field event featuring students with special needs paired with a “buddy.” This event provides an opportunity for exceptional children and their families to enjoy San Antonio’s Fiesta celebration in an accepting environment. Community information booths are located throughout the venue, offering information spotlighting families with children with special needs. There are also many food and carnival booths for our community to enjoy. Proceeds from the booths support participating district clubs and activities. Free.

Zeta Fiesta Track Meet, 9:00 A.M.–1:00 P.M. at Sam Houston High School—The 33rd annual track meet for youths ages 5–12. This event provides youth with an opportunity to develop good sportsmanship and gain a feeling of accomplishment while participating in a healthy multicultural activity. All youth receive certificates of participation and winners receive ribbons. Admission is free. There is a $8 registration fee per participant.

Earth Day, 9:00 A.M.–2:00 P.M. at Woodlawn Lake—Earth Day kicks off with a 5K run at Woodlawn Lake. The rest of the day features live music and dancing; educational booths; vegetarian food and drink options; t-shirt giveaways; tree giveaways; information for the preservation of the land, air, and water in our community (such as energy-saving tips, water-saving advice, proper recycling, planting procedures for our climate, and more); animal adoption/rescue; and promotion of mass transportation options. Free.

Viva Botanica, 10:00 A.M.–2:00 P.M. at San Antonio Botanical Garden—See the beautiful Garden at the height of spring with fun Fiesta-themed activities for the kids and culinary presentations. Enjoy Ballet Folklorico performances by Guadalupe Dance Company at 11:00 A.M. followed by music from Conjunto Taller in the Fountain Plaza. Shop for San Antonio-friendly plants at the plant sale. Admission is $10 for adults and $7 for children.

Celebration of Traditions Pow Wow, 10:00 A.M.–4:00 P.M. at Woodlawn Gymnasium—All who attend have the opportunity to view and participate in the American Indian culture and traditions of dance and music at an official Native American Pow Wow. The pow wow promotes tribal traditions, culture, and the opportunity for native people to gather in celebrating their rich heritage with one another. Free.

Image from Fiesta de los Niños Facebook page.

Fiesta de los Niños, 10:00 A.M.–6:00 P.M. at Port San Antonio—This is a party for the “pint-sized folks.” Children can enjoy games and rides in a safe, alcohol-free environment. Parents can enjoy music and dance performed by some of San Antonio’s finest entertainers among plenty of food booths. Don’t miss the Sombrero Loco parade at noon—a kids’ parade that winds its way through Port San Antonio’s Town Center. Free.

Piñatas in the Barrio, 12:00–10:00 P.M. at Plaza Guadalupe—Featuring live entertainment, delicious food, and fun for the whole family. This year’s event will prove to be spectacular with the unveiling of the “Barrio’s Largest Piñata,” San Antonio’s record-size piñata! Free.

April 22 & 23

Fiesta Arts Fair, Saturday, 10:00 A.M.–6:00 P.M. & Sunday, 11:00 A.M.–5:00 P.M. at Southwest School of Art—What began as a small arts fair has grown into one of the highlights of Fiesta San Antonio and is known as one of the most family-friendly Fiesta events, with 110 regional and national artists offering a wide variety of artistic media for sale, plus live music from local and regional bands. Plus, the always creative Young Artists Garden has hands-on activities for kids and teens. Admission is $15 for adults at the gate ($12 in advance or with valid student ID); $15 for children 5–12 (under age 5 free). Advance tickets are available online through April 20th.

Sunday, April 23

Image from Asociacion de Charros San Antonio Facebook page.

A Day in Old Mexico & Charreada, 3:00–6:00 P.M. at Rancho del Charro—Explore the distinctive culture that upholds deep-rooted customs, tradition, and family as a way of life. This family event features food, drinks, pony rides for the kids, Ballet Folklorico performances, and live Mariachi music. The 2017 Rey Feo LXIX will be honored on April 23, and King Antonio XCV will be honored on April 30. Gates open at 1:00 P.M. for parking. Adult admission is $20 and child admission (ages 6-12) is $5. Cash only.

Deco District Arts and Music Festival, 12:00–8:00 P.M. at Deco District—This outdoor, boutique-like festival offers dozens of performances by local and national musicians of all ages, a diverse food and drink menu, local art vendors, and community spirit for all to enjoy. One of the stages is dedicated to Network for Young Artists and other local youth-centric organizations. This event highlights the cultural, economic, and social vitality of the Deco District. Free.

Fiesta de la Familia, 11:00 A.M.–8:00 P.M. at St. Gregory Catholic Church and School—Now in its 25th year, this is a family-oriented event with no entry fee, food, beverages, games, a live/silent auction, and music for your enjoyment. Free.

Monday, April 24

Texas Cavaliers River Parade, 7:00–9:00 P.M. at San Antonio River—Each year hundreds of thousands of people line the banks of the San Antonio River to view this parade. This year’s parade, entitled “Kaleidoscope,” promises an evening of family fun with live music, celebrities, and lights. More than 45 festively decorated floats sponsored by local community organizations and military installations drift down the river. King Antonio XCV reigns over the evening’s festivities and gives a Texas-sized welcome to the enthusiastic spectators along the winding route. Tickets available for purchase at The Texas Cavaliers Office. Admission is $14–$26.

Tuesday, April 25

Children’s Texas History Forum, 9:15 A.M.–12:30 P.M. at Casa Navarro State Historic Site—Students are taken back in time by re-enactors and hostesses dressed in period clothing. Discussions of frontier life and Texas history are presented in a way that is both education and entertaining. This event is free, but registration is required. To register, contact Dolores Tamez by calling (210) 736-2344 or e-mailing [email protected] Free.

Fiesta Especial Celebration Day, 10:00 A.M.–3:00 P.M. at Alamodome—Hosted by Reaching Maximum Independence, this event offers inclusive and educational experiences engaging individuals with disabilities in the culture and celebrations of Fiesta through educational outreach, community instruction, and training. Guests can ride all types of rides, play games, eat yummy food, and participate in a Shoebox parade. Advance registration is required. The deadline for individuals to register to attend is Friday, April 14th at 5:00 P.M. No general admission will be allowed at the gate. Free.

Thursday, April 27

Battle of Flowers Association Band Festival, 6:30–9:30 P.M. at Alamo Stadium—Features choreographed music presentations by more than 30 local high school bands that will be judged on marching, musicality, and crowd appeal. Concluding the evening, more than 5,000 students will take to the field and join together in a mass band presentation performing a medley of songs and showcasing their music and color guard in tandem to a fantastic fireworks finale. General admission is $5. Tickets available for purchase online at www.battleofflowers.org and at The Fiesta Store® beginning April 7.

Family Fiesta, 5:00–9:00 P.M. at Colonial Hills United Methodist Church—This event provides fun for kids of all ages in an alcohol- and smoke-free environment, featuring food, inflatables, train rides, a petting zoo, pony rides, face painting, a balloon clown, cascarones, regalia (including pins and shirts), and games for all ages. An entertainment stage operates throughout the evening providing shows with puppets, cloggers, mariachis, and CHUMC’s contemporary Christian music praise bands. Parking and entertainment are free. Some attractions and food cost $1–$6. Admission is free.

Friday, April 28

Battle of Flowers Parade, 12:20–4:00 P.M.—The Battle of Flowers® Parade honors the heroic spirit of the patriots of the Alamo, commemorates the victory of San Jacinto, and celebrates the diversity and heritage of Texas and our nation. As the second-largest day parade in the U.S., the Battle of Flowers Parade supports the educational, artistic, social, and philanthropic achievements of our community’s youth. Admission is $12–25. Tickets available for purchase at www.battleofflowers.org and at The Fiesta Store® beginning April 7.

Saturday, April 29

Pooch Parade, 7:45–11:00 A.M. at Alamo Heights Pool—Calling all pooches! Spend a Saturday morning with your favorite human on a 2.6-mile walk through the tree-lined streets of Alamo Heights, presented by Therapy Animals of San Antonio. Come early for exhibits and presentations; then the ever-popular Canine Costume Contest starts at 8:15 A.M. (you must be registered to enter). Advance registration is $25 for individuals and $30 for families.

Image from Pooch Parade

King William Fair & Parade, 9:00 A.M.–6:00 P.M. at King William Historical Neighborhood—The 50th King William Fair is a family fair with art and craft vendors, live music and dance on five stages, food and beverage booths, a Kids Kingdom play area, and a small but quirky parade, all on the streets of the historic district with its stately homes and gracious gardens. Admission is $10 for adults; children 12 and under are free.

United Way Kids Festival, 11:00 A.M.–3:00 P.M. at Lockwood Park—More than 65 booths (non-profits, school districts, and city services) will provide information, activities, and entertainment focusing on the celebration and promotion of early childhood development. There will be a large variety of activities being offered for children of all ages, plus Showmobile stage hosting numerous entertainment acts along with mascot characters. Free.

Fiesta Flambeau Parade, 6:30–10:00 P.M. at Parade Route—The largest illuminated night parade in the nation. The parade is viewed by approximately 700,000 people in the streets of downtown San Antonio and another 1.5 million on television. The theme for this year is “City Lights and Celebrations.” It will be led by the University of Texas Longhorn Band followed by local and out-of-town bands, marching units, equestrian units, and spectacular floats and other attractions to delight and create a night of spectacular illumination. To purchase tickets visit www.fiestaflambeauparade.org or call (210) 364-5349. Tickets will be available for purchase at The Fiesta Store beginning April 7. Admission is $16.50–$30.

Sunday, April 30

A Day in Old Mexico & Charreada, 3:00–6:00 P.M. at Rancho del Charro—Explore the distinctive culture which upholds deep-rooted customs, tradition, and family as a way of life. This family event features food, drinks, pony rides for the kids, Ballet Folklorico performances, and live Mariachi music. The 2017 Rey Feo LXIX will be honored on April 23, and King Antonio XCV will be honored on April 30. Gates open at 1:00 P.M. for parking. Adult admission is $20 and child admission (ages 6–12) is $5. Cash only.

Festival de Cascarones, 1:00–8:00 P.M. at Texas A&M San Antonio—Live music, food, games, and fun for the whole family! Enjoy performances by The Last Bandoleros, currently touring with Sting; Girl in a Coma, San Antonio’s own all-girl rock band; and one of A&M-San Antonio’s own student-led bands, to be announced soon! There will also be a Kid Zone and movies in the auditorium to cool off and relax. Free parking available. Free admission.

Ongoing

Fiesta Carnival at Alamodome Parking Lot—Thrills and chills fill the air at one of the best carnivals in the land. Glittering lights, exciting rides, and a wide assortment of foods in the heart of San Antonio make the Carnival a perennial favorite of Fiesta-goers. Revenue from this event helps support the activities of the Fiesta. Game and ride prices vary. Free admission.

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