‘Everybody is in a panic’: Fiesta could see fewer medals due to coronavirus

Factories that make medals remain closed in China

SAN ANTONIO – Fiesta medals have been considered symbols of celebration and are donned each year by the public. The medals represent nonprofits, businesses, and are often personalized.

Charlie Drago, owner of Monarch Trophy Studios, said most are made at his location, but the process to get the medals has always been a nail-biting one.

“Always a nervous, very nervous thing we go through,” said Drago.

He is now faced with more uncertainty after several factories in China closed due to the spread of the deadly coronavirus.

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Drago said a majority of the medals are made overseas and factory workers have not been able to return to work.

“All of a sudden, it dawned us, what if they can’t go back to work?" he said.

If they can’t go back to work, there will be fewer Fiesta medals during the April celebration.

“Oh, everybody is in a panic,” said Maggie Ibarra-Jimenez, Facebook administrator for Fiesta Medal Maniacs.

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Ibarra-Jimenez created a social media page due to the popularity of Fiesta medals, but she said there has already been a concern of a possible shortage.

“They’re a little worried whether or not they’re going to have their medals,” said Ibarra-Jimenez.

Dragos said his business has 40 to 50 designs that were premade and medals can still be made locally.

“It’s part of Fiesta, the party with a purpose. It’s part of giving back," said Dragos.