Relive Texas history at the Battle of Flowers Association Oratorical Contest

Official Fiesta event takes place Feb. 25 at the Witte Museum

Battle of Flowers Oratorical Contest (KSAT)

SAN ANTONIO – The Great Storm of 1900, a 1937 school explosion in New London and devastating tornadoes in the Panhandle — all disastrous events that played a vital role in reshaping Texas and its residents.

Those events will be relived at the Battle of Flowers Association 97th annual Oratorical Contest, “Defining Disasters....Reshaping Texas and Texans” on Feb. 25 at the Witte Museum.

College students will be competing for cash prizes as they take us on a trip back in time to discover and share the stories of the blockbuster events that altered the course of Texas history.

“As a small child I have always been fascinated by natural and man-made disasters, asking all the questions that go along with it: how, why, what was the outcome, were there any warnings and what could be done to make sure this doesn’t happen again,” 2022 Oratorical Chairman Amy White explained as the impetus of this year’s contest theme. “I believe we can always learn from our past. We can use that knowledge to help protect our future and make it better. Disaster does this for us, as destructive as they are, Texas and Texans have changed for the better because of them.”

Held annually since 1926, the Battle of Flowers Oratorical Contest is the oldest university and college-level competition in the state of Texas. Every year, the event awards generous monetary prizes to its top five finalists and to the top three university advisor’s departments.

To participate in the contest is a prestigious honor for students, and offers a great opportunity to support our unique Texan history and culture. The top five student finalists receive the following monetary awards:

  • First Place: $5,000
  • Second Place: $2,500
  • Third Place: $1,500
  • Fourth Place: $1,000
  • Fifth Place: $750

The university department’s faculty advisor of the top three winning student contests will receive the following cash awards:

  • First Place: $2,500
  • Second Place: $1,500
  • Third Place: $1,000

If you’re interested in viewing the contest virtually, click here.

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About the Author:

David Ibañez has been managing editor of since the website's launch in October 2000.