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Best Bets - Friday, April 26: Enjoying the Battle of Flowers Parade... and beyond!

This is one of the oldest and BIGGEST Fiesta events, and it's certainly one of the hottest, too, but organizers have made a change this year that should help parade-goers beat the heat!

Friday, April 26

Battle of Flowers Parade

9:30 a.m.

Parade route through downtown

This is one of the oldest and BIGGEST Fiesta events, and it used to be one of the hottest, too, but organizers changed it to a morning start time recently, and that really helps parade-goers beat the heat!

Get your tickets at the Fiesta Store on Broadway, arrive early and lather on the sunscreen.

Also, get into the groove by donning your Fiesta pins and wacky hats. You'll find food and drinks aplenty supplied by street vendors. Cheap trinkets are hawked along the routes. You'll want your camera.

The parade sometimes runs a bit slow, so there are lots of opportunities to snap a few pics for Facebook. You'll catch Escaramusa (traditionally-costumed women of the Mexican rodeo riding side-saddle), glamorous Fiesta beauty queens and princesses riding atop fanciful floats, horse-drawn carriages, antique cars, bands, clowns, drill teams... oh, you name it, this parade has it!

Remember to shout "Show us your shoes!" It's tradition!

Seats range from tiered bleachers to folding chairs.

You might want to park your car somewhere near the parade route downtown and walk in to find your seat. Leave plenty of time to find that elusive parking spot!

Many employers across town shut down on parade day, and schools are also on hiatus for this annual event. So parking can be intense.

Don't be in a hurry to leave after the parade is over, either. Take shelter in a cool restaurant with a view of the street. Now watch what happens next. Lickity-split the street crews come out to sweep up the discarded remains of the day. It's a phenomenon in itself.


Fiesta de los Reyes: Market Square, 514 W. Commerce St., 10 a.m. - midnight

Fiesta Carnival: Alamodome Parking Lot C, 6 p.m. - midnight

Tenth Street River Festival: VFW Post 76, 10th St., noon - 12:30 a.m.

Fiesta San Fernando: San Fernando Cathedral, 115 W. Main Plaza, 11 a.m. - midnight

A Night in Old San Antonio (NIOSA): La Villita, 418 Villita St., 5:30-10:30 p.m.

Coming Up

BEST BETS for Saturday, April 27: Check out King William Fair and Fiesta Flambeau Parade!

BEST BETS for Sunday, April 28: One last day of Fiesta at the Festival de CascarĂ³nes