Fiesta Flambeau: Photographs of the First Annual Illuminated Parade
Next week we observe the 65th anniversary of the Fiesta Flambeau Parade as an annual event during Fiesta San Antonio. Over 700,000 spectators are expected to watch the floats, marching units, horseback riders, and musical groups pass along the downtown streets.
In early 1948, the Fiesta Association announced that a new parade would be added to the list of Fiesta events. The addition was made in response to numerous requests from people who remembered the popular illuminated automobile parades held during Fiesta in 1911 and 1924. Reynolds Andricks, parade chairman, found participants among various civic and social organizations, commercial establishments, and the military. The parade would be called simply “Illuminated Night Parade” and serve as the Fiesta grand finale. Over 100,000 spectators came that evening, insuring that it would be held again the following year. With a growing list of participants, the Fiesta Association announced in 1951 that the night parade would have a new name: Fiesta Flambeau.
These photographs are from The San Antonio Light Photograph Collection (MS 359). They were taken on April 24, 1948 by Light staff photographer Robert Jean Osborne. Special Collections also houses the San Antonio Light staff photographs of Fiesta Flambeau each subsequent year through 1992.