Fiesta TV coverage: Selena tribute, parades, more

April 16, 2018 GMT

This year’s Fiesta festivities are shaping up be more spectacular than ever in celebration of San Antonio’s 300th birthday, and KSAT, the official TV station of the city’s biggest party, aims to bring viewers every glittery moment possible.

Highlights include the three ramped-up parades and an opening-day musical tribute to South Texas’ beloved Queen of Tejano, Selena.

According to KSAT, the Hemisfair-set Fiesta Fiesta, which will kick off the 11-day event Thursday, will feature a special guest, Selena’s widower, Chris Perez.

“(He’ll be) performing with the Emotions and they will be performing Selena songs!” David Cuccio, KSAT spokesman and creative services director, revealed in an email.

“We will broadcast it live. They’re hitting the stage at 8:30 p.m. Thursday.”

KSAT anchors Ursula Pari and Steve Spriester initially will bring TV viewers portions of the kickoff celebration during the station’s 5 and 6 p.m. newscasts. Their coverage will culminate in a prime-time Fiesta Fiesta special from 7 to 9 p.m.


Two other KSAT personalities, Fiona Gorostiza and Mike Osterhage of the lifestyle show “SA Live,” will be on site MC’ing the event.

In an emailed comment, Spriester said it’s glorious “being amongst the throngs of people who love to stop by and say ‘Hi’ at one of San Antonio’s biggest parties of the year.”

Added Pari: “It wouldn’t be Fiesta if we weren’t right in the middle of it all, celebrating right along with our viewers who are really in store for the biggest Fiesta Fiesta yet.”

Earlier Battle of Flowers

The jewel in KSAT’s coverage crown, as always, will be the station’s telecasts of the three dazzling parades.

Morning anchorwoman Leslie Mouton, an old hand at hosting, said she and a.m. news partner Mark Austin are particularly stoked to be helming the Battle of Flowers Parade again this year, particularly since the earlier start time will cool things off considerably.

“We are pumped … and excited about the time change!” Mouton said via a Facebook message.

“It is traditionally so hot during the parade. I think it makes it tough on parade-goers and those in it! Hopefully the earlier time will keep everyone a bit more comfortable,” she added.

According to a previous report on, the procession, starting with the Vanguard, will begin at 9 a.m. April 27 on Grayson Street and Broadway. The parade officially will kick off with a new section — Simplemente San Antonio, starting at 9:30 a.m. — to honor first responders, city officials and a “few hero surprises,” a release stated.


KSAT’s “Good Morning San Antonio @ 9” will originate from the parade site, with Mouton and Austin hosting and Mike Osterhage mixing it up with the colorful crowds. They will start with coverage of the Vanguard, then cut back to the studio for any news/traffic/weather updates, then return to the parade coverage. “Sustaining coverage begins at 10 a.m.,” Cuccio said.

“We expect it to be a bit longer (being the city’s 300th) with the most entrants ever,” Mouton said.

“We can’t stress enough the need for residents to get downtown early on the Friday of Battle of Flowers … We’re stressing they should be in their seats by 9 a.m.,” Cuccio added.

He said this particular parade will by nationally syndicated with stations throughout the country picking it up. Some will carry portions live, others will broadcast a recorded version.

The Texas Cavaliers River Parade, starting at 7 p.m. April 23, will be broadcast live, with hosts Myra Arthur and David Sears delivering the float details and meteorologist Adam Caskey capturing spectators’ reactions.

The climactic Fiesta Flambeau Parade, starting at 6:45 p.m. April 28 and billed as the country’s largest illuminated night parade, will be brought to viewers live with hosts Pari and Spriester.

They’ll be assisted by Caskey, who will be working the crowds.

This year’s theme also honors the city’s milestone birthday: “Three Centuries … One City.”

As for other events getting the star treatment on KSAT, Cuccio emailed these TV details:

The Battle of Flowers Band Festival from Alamo Stadium will be carried live from 7 to 9:30 p.m. April 26 on MeTV, KSAT’s secondary digital channel (12.2). Hosts will be Gorostiza and Osterhage.

Students from more than 30 high school bands from San Antonio and surrounding areas will present the musical evening under this year’s banner, “300 Timeless Treasure.”

The broadcast will re-air from 3 to 6 p.m. April 28 on KSAT.

Jeanne Jakle’s column appears Thursdays and Sundays in mySA. Read more of her columns here. | | @JakleJ