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What's new at the San Antonio Missions since becoming a World Heritage site?

More events expected at the San Antonio Missions

SAN ANTONIO – A central part of San Antonio and its history are the San Antonio Missions.

In 2015 a big recognition came: All the missions were designated a World Heritage site.

Since then, structurally not much has changed as the National Park Service continues regular maintenance of the facilities. 

Explore Mission Concepcion

"A lot of our project work is already occurring, because National Park sites maintain these places for the long haul," Lauren Gurniewicz chief of interpretation said. "We are always seeking funding to care for the historic resources, and to find ways to share stories with people."

Currently, work is being done at Mission San Jose. 

Explore Mission San Jose

"On a cyclic schedule, the last time these had any attention was about 20 years ago," David Vekasy, chief of facility management said.

One thing that has changed or increased since the World Heritage designation is community involvement and support of the sites.

"Really what we're seeing is increased interest and support, which comes in many different ways," Gurniewicz said. "Some of it is partnerships and some of it is financial support from other entities."

Looking ahead, there are a lot of events, including the second annual World Heritage Festival in September, and in 2018 there will be a lot of events that will be part of San Antonio's tricentennial celebration.

"It's likely we'll be a site for Luminaria next year," Gurniewicz said. "I don't know yet what that event will look like, but there's been in that as well. So we'll see more special events on site in the park next year for sure."

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