SAN ANTONIO – Nearly a year after the coronavirus pandemic began to upend the lives of people everywhere, event organizers are grappling with the choice to cancel or postpone events for the second year in a row.
Recently, Fiesta San Antonio officials decided to push the two-week party from April to June due to ongoing COVID-19 safety concerns. This is after Fiesta was scrapped altogether in 2020.
Some of the biggest Fiesta traditions, like the Battle of Flowers Parade, Fiesta Flambeau Parade and Oyster Bake, however, will not return at all this year.
The decisions were made as the U.S. faces a grim death rate.
The number of new cases and hospitalizations due to the virus in the U.S. dropped sharply in the past few weeks, but deaths are near all-time highs. About 3,100 people in the U.S. are dying a day due to the virus, according to the Associated Press and Johns Hopkins University data.
About 447,000 in the U.S. have died due to the virus, including more than 2,100 in Bexar County.
As a result, organizers have decided to play it safe and cancel their events or postpone them — for now — until more Americans become inoculated with the COVID-19 vaccine.
Here’s a look at which San Antonio events have been canceled or postponed so far. This list will be updated if and when more events are axed or rescheduled.
Barbacoa and Big Red Festival: Organizers on Wednesday, Jan. 27, announced that this year’s event will be canceled “with COVID-19 still present in our community.” The post said they are “hoping” the festival — which brought in about 40,000 people in 2019 — will return in 2022.
Battle of Flowers and Fiesta Flambeau parades: Organizers on Monday, Feb. 1, announced both of the trademark parades are canceled “because of the ongoing pandemic, and the extraordinary safety precautions in planning these events.” People who purchased tickets to the Battle of Flowers parade can request a refund online beginning Feb. 15, and people who purchased tickets to the Fiesta Flambeau parade can request a refund online beginning Feb. 15. In both instances, click on ticket information and follow the instructions.
Battle of Flowers Band Festival: The Battle of Flowers Association announced Wednesday, Feb. 3, that the decision was made to cancel the band festival altogether in 2021. “... We feel strongly that it is unlikely to continue at the level in which our participants and spectators expect after the school year has ended in June 2021,” Battle of Flowers Band Festival Vice President Cameron Armstrong said in a statement. Held at Alamo Stadium, the event typically includes 5,000 students from marching bands at area high schools and about 20,000 spectators.
Fiesta Oyster Bake at St. Mary’s University: The St. Mary’s University Alumni Association on Friday, Jan. 22, announced that the beloved event will not take place in 2021. “I am sad to announce that we are canceling Fiesta Oyster Bake 2021 due to the substantial numbers of COVID-19 cases in our region,” association president Joe L. Vela Jr. said in a news release. The association said the tradition will resume on April 1-2, 2022.
King William Fair: The fair and parade will not take place at all in 2021, organizers announced on Tuesday, Feb. 2. Organizers of the quirky King William Fair, which has been an official Fiesta San Antonio event since 1968, said they hope the event can return on April 9, 2022. “In the meantime, please stay safe and keep the spirit of Fiesta alive in your heart! ¡Viva Fiesta!,” they said in a statement.
As I Lay Dying: The concert for the American metalcore band was supposed to take place on Feb. 23 at the Aztec Theatre, but it was canceled, according to Ticketmaster.
Fiesta: Fiesta San Antonio officials confirmed that the event that was scheduled for April 15-25 would be postponed until June 17-27, 2021. Fiesta Commission officials said the June dates were chosen “so that Fiesta can continue its mission of supporting many local non-profit organizations while maintaining its No. 1 priority, the health and safety of all Fiesta guests.”
MÖTLEY CRÜE, Def Leppard, Poison, Joan Jett and the Blackhearts: Some of the biggest rockers of the 80s were supposed to head to the Alamodome in June 2020. The concert has been rescheduled for Aug. 20.
Deftones: The show that was supposed to take place at the AT&T Center on Sept. 1, 2020, was moved to Sept. 8.
Enrique Iglesias, Ricky Martin: The show at the AT&T Center was rescheduled for Sept. 10. It was originally slated for Sept. 11, 2020.
Dude Perfect: The show at the AT&T Center was rescheduled for July 21.
Monster Jam: The event was supposed to take place at the Alamodome on Jan. 23-24, but it was rescheduled to July 3-4.
The Weeknd: The pop star will play at the AT&T Center on April 19, 2022. He was supposed to perform on Aug. 19, 2020.
Rammstein: German industrial band Rammstein was supposed to bring a “pyro-theatrical experience” to the Alamodome on Sept. 16, 2020, but that was moved to Sept. 24.
Judas Priest: The show at the Freeman Coliseum has a new date of Oct. 12.