SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) — A Night in Old San Antonio is back without restrictions through Friday.
The first night of NIOSA kicked off Tuesday evening at La Villita Historic Village with a parade that included Fiesta royalty, the Fiesta Hat court, Mayor Ron Nirenberg, city councilors, members of the U.S. military, the Bexar County Buffalo Soldiers and the Brackenridge High School drumline.
“If I have one message for tonight for our community, it is that here in San Antonio Fiesta is back,” Nirenberg said during the NIOSA Opening Ceremonies, imploring Fesita celebrants to safely party with a purpose.
NIOSA features multiple cultural celebrations throughout La Villita that include Villa Espana, South of the Border, French Quarter, China Town, Irish Flats and more. The event features more than 150 booths across La Villita.
Hundreds of volunteers transformed La Villita Historic Village into NIOSA ahead of the opening ceremonies Tuesday evening.
“We so appreciate our volunteers that have been here all day in this 96-degree heat,” NIOSA spokesperson Melody Goeken said. “They’ve been working all day to put these booths up and to get the flowers fluffed and get all the food ready to go. We could not do NIOSA without our volunteers.”
Because of construction happening around the market, there were some changes implemented to work around the roadwork and renovations. The event now reaches to Alamo Street and the southwest side of Hemisfair, which houses areas like Frontier Town and Clown Alley.
“We also encourage people to take the park and ride to come to La Villita,” Goeken said. “Parking it limited and we’ve seen signs that say $20, $30, $40 dollars for parking.
One holdover from last year’s COVID-restricted event is the use of the cardless, cashless, and touchless BlastPass wristbands to replace tickets. Park and Ride is the perfect option.”
The BlastPast wristbands can be purchased online or via various kiosks on NIOSA Grounds. Lines to purchase and refill BlastPass wristbands were long throughout the first evening of festivities.
The funds raised during NISOA benefit the San Antonio Conversation Society’s mission in supporting historic properties, parks, waterways as well as the traditions and heritage of the Alamo City.
“We are so excited to welcome everyone back.” Goeken said. “We have an expanded footprint and we have your same favorites foods, like chicken on a stick. We want everyone to come in and come down.”
NIOSA tickets and BlastPass wristbands can be purchased at www.niosa.org/p/tickets.