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The economic and environmental impacts of Fiesta on San Antonio

Learn how the city’s biggest party affects the Alamo City

SATXtoday: Battle of Flowers Clean Up

San Antonians keeping the streets clean during the annual Battle of Flowers Parade.

Photo by City of San Antonio

We are less than 10 days away from the biggest party of the year — Fiesta. Before we put on our flower crowns and high-tail it to the nearest Chicken on a Stick stand, have you ever thought about what happens to San Antonio post Fiesta? With over 2.5 million visitors coming to the party of the year, there’s no doubt the Alamo City sees a reoccurring impact to its economy and environment. Let’s break it down.

Fiesta by the numbers

The UTSA Center for Community and Business Research released an economic impact study about Fiesta San Antonio in 2017. Here are a few fast facts:

  • Contributed $340.1 million in sales to the local economy (compared to $284 million in 2007).
  • Supported 3,464 full-time-equivalent local jobs.
  • Generated sales tax collections of $3.6 million for local government.
  • Non-local visitors spent $188 million.
  • Attracted 2,512,489 event attendees annually.
  • Mobilized 75K volunteers.

Keeping San Antonio beautiful

Now that we learned how Fiesta impacts our economy, what does it do to our local environment? The City of San Antonio estimates 15 tons of trash is collected at the end of each parade — yikes. With Earth Day happening during Fiesta, here are a few ways to keep our city clean while partying with a purpose:

  • Use environmental-friendly confetti like biodegradable or flower confetti instead of metallic or plastic confetti.
  • Recycle empty bottles, cups, and cans in designated containers.
  • Car pool, grab a rideshare, or ride with VIA to events.
  • Throw trash away into designated containers.
  • Support green events — check out last year’s list.

Pro tip: If possible, use a reusable container to refill your favorite drink at events (Note: Water bottle policies vary from each event). Check out these colorful Fiesta tumblers from SA Flavor.

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