Institute Of Texan Cultures Tips Their Hat To Fiesta

Mar 18, 2014

A new exhibit at the Institute of Texan Cultures captures San Antonians at their quirkiest. That exhibit is called Hats Off to Fiesta. I spoke to Diana Luis, who is a curatorial researcher at the ITC.

“Hats Off to Fiesta is pretty much a celebration of the different types of hats that individuals wear during Fiesta season" she explained. “Individuals show off their creative sides by adorning themselves with these amazing pieces of art on top of their heads.”

The Fiesta hat origins go back in the 1890s when women would wear their Sunday best headgear to Fiesta events. As Luis explained, it grew.

“The tradition just kind of developed from there, the hats started off small, and then from there, just like the medals, it just exploded," Luis said. "And it’s just become whatever you can put on your head and still walk around goes, and each year people make ‘em bigger and better.”

So are San Antonians just an over-the-top town in terms of Fiesta?

“I don’t think we’re really over the top, we’re just really passionate and excited individuals," she said. "We like to be noticed -- I won’t deny that! We love our history, we love the culture we came from.”

The exhibit has other Fiesta items as well.

“Fiesta Medal Mania II Sash, which is a six-foot sash of donated 2014 Fiesta Medals, as well as a retrospective photomural of Night in Old San Antonio, which shows how NIOSA has progressed from the 1936 autumn festival to today’s four-day long Night In Old San Antonio La Villita Festival,” Luis said.

As to when you can see all these San Antonio Fiesta-centric items, it opens next week.

“Grand opening is March 28 and it’ll be part of your regular admissions, which is $8 for adults, $6 for children,” Luis said.