Now that the Final Four is over with, it's time for the city's 300th birthday to swing into high gear, News Radio 1200 WOAI reports.
Mayor Ron Nirenberg says the 'Commemorative Week' that starts the first week of May will mark the two important events that marked the City's founding.
On May 1, 1718, Don Martin de Alacon, the Governor of the Spanish province of Coahuila y Texas granted a charter for the creation of the Mission San Antonio de Valero. Even though the original mission was not on the current site, this was the mission that became the Alamo.
And on May 5, 1718, de Alarcon was on hand as the Presidio de San Antonio de Bexar was founded, opening the region to civilian settlement.
Nirenberg says the week will begin with the unveiling of the first phase of the San Pedro Creek project, which has been under constrction on the west side of downtown for more than two years.
"In many ways, it brings us down to our roots," he said. "Early civilization build homes along the San Antonio River."
The San Pedro Creek project, known as the 'second Riverwalk, will include a linear park with artwork and shops.The entire week will be filled with activities:
TUESDAY, MAY 1ST - DAY OF REFLECTION
The day of reflection commemorates the anniversary of the establishment of the original Mission San Antonio de Valero and will be led by the faith-based community. The event will begin at 6:00 p.m. in Main Plaza and is free and open to the public.
- 6:00 p.m. – Musical and dance performances showcasing the Sounds of Faith in San Antonio and 300 Prayers Art Installation
- 7:00 p.m.– Program honoring San Antonio’s native population, special lighting of Commemorative Flame, which will remain in Main Plaza for the duration of Commemorative Week and interfaith celebration featuring 21 religious groups.
- 8:15 p.m.– Candlelight Vigil in Main Plaza
- 8:18 p.m. – (20:18) City-wide ringing of church bells
- 9:30 p.m. – SAGA light display at San Fernando Cathedral
WEDNESDAY, MAY 2ND – HISTORY & EDUCATION DAY
History and education day is an opportunity for all residents, especially children, to be immersed in 300 years of history and begin to build a legacy for the next generation.
- VIA Mobile Learning Lab – VIA Transit, the official transportation sponsor of the Tricentennial, will showcase history and education on the road with a special traveling exhibit, in partnership with the Witte Museum’s Confluence and Culture: 300 Years of San Antonio History.
- Tricentennial in the Classroom – Elementary school students will be immersed in the Tricentennial with special commemorative lesson plans showcasing our 300 years of history.
- Kickoff of the Tree-centennial – 300 trees will be planted at nine local colleges and universities. Each campus will plant a ceremonial tree to commemorate the week, with the balance planted in the fall.
- FREE STEM Activities – All 29 San Antonio Public Library branches will offer free STEM activities from 2:30 – 5:30 p.m.
THURSDAY, MAY 3RD – FOUNDERS’ DAY
Founders’ day includes a city-wide celebration of history for all to enjoy with free, family-friendly activities.
- 5:00 – 8:00 p.m. Free Admission to Morgan’s Wonderland – Special celebrations of San Antonio’s birthday will include the Hartman’s House Puppet Show “Happy Birthday, San Antonio!” and appearances by the Wonder Squad Super Heroes
- 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Our Lady of the Lake University – The Best in the West will showcase the Westside’s unique history and culture. The main stage will feature the Westside Horns, a blessing by the Sisters of Divine Providence, music of the Westside by DJ Chuco Garcia, and poetry by San Antonio’s newest poet laureate and OLLU professor, Octavio Quintanilla, Ph.D.
- 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Texas A&M University San Antonio – San Antonio’s Southside will be on display with an event that features performances from local mariachis, folklorico and conjunto groups. The event will pay tribute to vibrant Native American art, including work from local artist and architect Ricky Reyes. The Asociación de Charros San Antonio will bring cultural diversity and family-fun to all attendees.
- 5:30 – 8:00 p.m. St Philip’s College – The celebration will include a keynote speech from Dr. Ruth Simmons, President of Prairie View A&M University. She is the first African American woman to serve as the president of an Ivy League University. The event will also feature a play starring Professor Antoinette Winstead as Artemisia Bowden, founder of St. Phillip’s College, with a prelude from the San Antonio Symphony. A curated exhibit featuring 22 local African American artists, curated by Dr. Scott Sherer. The event will also showcase history with the Bexar County Buffalo Soldiers Association and the Sam Houston High School Drumline.
- 5:30 p.m. University of Texas San Antonio – Historic Futures: A Taste of Folklife Festival - The event will showcase our diversity and rich heritage through a wide variety of ethnic food, music, dance and a firework show at dusk. Music is presented by Conjunto Puro Corazon, Emond Karam and Bill Smallwood Band. Performances include Ile Bahia Capoeira Luanda, Fiesta City Chorus, Fire on the Mountain Cloggers, San Antonio Pipes and Drums, American Indians, Halau Hawaiian Hula and Lebanese Folk Dancers.
- Founders’ Day Gala at the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center – The event will host multiple international dignitaries, including delegations from eight out of 11 sister cities, and will tell the story of San Antonio’s vibrant history. The event will feature special guest actor Nicholas Gonzalez of the hit shows The Good Doctor, How to Get Away with Murder and Narcos. San Antonio’s own “El Charro de Oro” Sebastien De La Cruz will showcase his talent.
FRIDAY, MAY 4TH – ARTS FOR ALL DAY
Programming on this day will make art and culture accessible to all residents and visitors.
- 8:30 a.m. – Dedication of new public art at Hemisfair by renowned Mexican artist Jorge Marin
- 3:00 – 6:00 p.m. – Free admission to Art Pace, Blue Star Contemporary, Briscoe Western Art Museum, Carver Community Cultural Center, The DoSeum, Guadalupe Cultural Arts Center, Linda Pace Foundation, McNay Art Museum, Mexican Cultural Institute San Antonio, San Antonio Museum of Art, Say Si, Southwest School of Art and the Witte Museum.
- 3:00 – 6:00 p.m. – SATX Social Ride Gallery Bike Tour.
- 3:00 – 6:00 p.m. – Free Concert at the Carver Cultural Center - The Carver Community Cultural Center will feature special performances, presented in partnership with Musical Bridges Around the World featuring International Tchaikovsky Competition Bronze medalist cellist Boris Andrianov and guitarist Dmitry Illarionov, the winner of 12 international guitar competitions. Local performers TBow Gonzalez and Michael Pleasants will showcase San Antonio’s artistic talent.
- 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. – Walking tour of Confluence: Art at the Convention Center
- 4:00 – 6:00 p.m. – Free Dance Performances at Travis Park – Performances from: Quenedit Dance Theatre; Jacqueline Courchene; McBride Dance; Faisan Folcklorico; Juan Pablo Robles Gil; Nina Padilla; and visiting guests from Escuela Superior de Musica y Danza de Monterrey.
- 5:00 – 7:00 p.m. – Conjunto Heritage Taller Performance – The community-based organization will showcase the history and traditions of Conjunto music.
- 9:30 p.m. – Bexar County Fireworks along the Mission Reach.
SATURDAY, MAY 5TH – LEGACY DAY
Legacy Day will officially open Phase One of the San Pedro Creek Project to the public. The project is a partnership between Bexar County, the City of San Antonio and the San Antonio River Authority. The project will transform San Pedro Creek from a drainage ditch to a new linear park that features public art, amenities for the entire family and drainage improvements throughout downtown.
SUNDAY, MAY 6TH – MILITARY APPRECIATION DAY
Military City, U.S.A. ™ will salute its military history with a weekend of programming at Fort Sam Houston. The events are made possible by USAA, the official military sponsor of the Tricentennial. The base will open to the public for the first time since 9/11 for a free festival that includes performances, premier demonstrations, historic tours and a firework show. Sunday’s event will feature a special performance by country music superstar Aaron Watson.
MILITARY WEEKEND EVENT SCHEDULE
- 8:00 a.m. Combat Medic Run
- 11:00 a.m. - 6:00 p.m. – Free festival for the whole family, featuring historic tours throughout the day
- 4:00-5:45 p.m. –
Military Demonstration Show featuring:
- Black Daggers, U.S. Air Force Special Ops Parachute Team
- Navy Corpsman & Working Dog Demonstration
- Army Fife and Drum Corps
- 1st Cavalry Division Cavalry re-enactment demonstration
- United States Marine Corps Silent Drill
- Air Force Flyover
- 1:00 – 9:30 p.m. – Free festival for the whole family, including special performances and historic tours and including:
- Polo Match
- Joint Forces Retreat ceremony
- Joint Color Guard
- Air Force Flyover
- Navy Corpsman & Working Dog Demonstration
- Army Fife & Drum Corps
- 1st Cav Division Cavalry charge re-enactment
SUNDAY, MAY 6TH – COMMEMORATIVE SICLOVIA EVENT
Siclovia will bring their family-friendly fitness event to the Southside with a special Tricentennial edition of the celebration.