SAN ANTONIO — San Antonio's biggest party with a purpose begins Thursday.
Get your Fiesta outfit and medals ready! The celebration kicks off with Fiesta Fiesta at Hemisfair promptly at 4 p.m. Thursday.
Before you start to celebrate, you may want to set aside some extra cash. That's because some of your favorite Fiesta events will cost a bit more.
Organizers say supply chain issues and inflation are to blame.
Taste of New Orleans
Taste of New Orleans will offer the same flavors of the Big Easy for the same price.
"Crawfish, etouffee, red beans and rice...gumbo," said Jerome Harris, Assistant to the Fiesta Coordinator for Taste of New Orleans.
Drinks will cost one dollar more. Admission hiked $2.
"It's $17 at the gate, $15 pre-sale," said Harris.
Kids 10 and under get in free.
"Whenever you celebrate with the San Antonio Zulus, you just gave back," said Tremell Brown, the Marketing Chairman of the San Antonio Zulu Association.
Pre-sale tickets went from $12 to now $14.
Attendees at Taste of New Orleans will now be using a Blast Pass, or cashless wristband to pay for food and drinks at the event. You can load up your wristband beforehand by visiting saza.org or you can reload at the event.
All proceeds from Taste of New Orleans benefit the San Antonio Zulu Association, who gifts 20 young men and women scholarships every year.
Oyster Bake is back for Fiesta 2022 after two years with the theme "Return of the Bake".
"Just like many festivals and businesses, we were impacted by inflation and supply chain issues," said Mike Martinez, Chairman of Fiesta Oyster Bake 2022.
Food prices will go up, but not by much.
"We increased about 5% across the board. We tried to minimize it," said Martinez.
To help offset the cost, entry prices are lower: From $29 in 2019 to $25 this year.
"We felt that was necessary to give back. We want people to come see us. We're gonna make it as affordable as we can for people," said Martinez.
All proceeds from the St. Mary's Oyster Bake raise funds for student scholarships to St. Mary's University and to support the University and Alumni Association.
TASTE of the Northside
TASTE of the Northside is changing locations this year, celebrating the popular event at the Dominion.
Denise Thieme, the Marketing Manager for Brighton Center, says expenses this year went up 15% to host the event.
"Providing the shuttles from the parking lot at Six Flags, the gasoline that goes from there. Then the vendors that are coming out. All of it," said Thieme.
To help make up the cost, ticket prices for TASTE of the Northside went up from $95 to $125.
"I think everybody recognizes that this is just the time that we're in."
All proceeds from TASTE of the Northside benefit the Brighton Center.
King William Fair
The King William Fair is the major fundraiser of the King William Association and helps support neighborhood school libraries and provide art instruction programs, plus offer scholarships for inner-city students; and create revitalization and preservation efforts in the King William Historic District.
In a statement, organizers tell KENS 5:
"Unfortunately, the King William Fair is faced with many rising costs to hold this year's Fair. Many contractors have doubled in price, trash clean-up has tripled, and due to Covid protocols we are implementing contact-less transactions by using a new BlastPass system. As a result, our Admission entry fee has increased from $15 in 2019 to $20 for 2022. Our food vendors are also facing shipping and supply-chain issues, so our prepared meats prices have risen slightly; yet not as much as seen in the grocery stores. Despite these inflation challenges, we continue to work to ensure a full family-fun Fiesta event for our fairgoers."
Six items on the NIOSA menu are going up in price this year.
Crispy shrimp wraps, potstickers, corn on the cob, corn in a cup, sopapillas and bottled tea/lemonade will all cost $1 more.
There will be a new footprint this year at NIOSA, as Frontier Town will relocate to the parking lot of the Magic Theatre. You can find an event map here.
Electronic tickets are required. You can scan a bar code or QR code at the gate.
Blast Passes will also be utilized. It is suggested you purchase one ahead of time to skip the lines on the day of the event. You can pick up your wristband at the Fiesta Store during business hours.
All proceeds from NIOSA benefit the Conservation Society of San Antonio.