Above: Fredheads unite this fall at the12th annual Fred Harvey History Weekend. Photograph courtesy of Wikimedia Commons.
FANS OF HOSPITALITY entrepreneur Fred Harvey (1835–1901) gather November 12–15 in Santa Fe and Las Vegas, New Mexico, for the 12th annual Fred Harvey History Weekend. Talks and events center on the legacy of hotels, restaurants, and western tourism Harvey built in partnership with the Atchison, Topeka & Santa Fe Railway beginning in the late 1800s. At Friday’s Fred Harvey Foodie Dinner and Auction, at La Fonda on the Plaza, in Santa Fe, chefs rework classic entrées and cocktails once served in dining cars and Harvey House cafés. Stephen Fried, author of Appetite for America: Fred Harvey and the Business of Civilizing the Wild West—One Meal at a Time (Bantam, 2010) and host for the weekend, gives us three reasons Fredheads are still wild about him after all these years.
His hospitality lives on: Key Harvey stops in the state include the 1898 Castañeda Hotel, in Las Vegas, which was renovated and reopened in 2019; the Harvey House Museum, in Belén, which is housed in a 1910 trackside restaurant operated by the company; and La Fonda, a Harvey House from 1925 to 1968. “You can really get a handle on what it was like when architect Mary Colter designed the hotel’s interiors,” Fried says. “Every public hallway at La Fonda has a great piece of art.”
Fred was an OG foodie: “In the 20th century, you just had this real culinary flourishing coming from La Fonda and the Castañeda. They brought interesting international and regional food—all sorts. It’s amazing when you look at these old Harvey menus, just how ambitious they were.”
A tourism visionary: “The company’s traditional Southwestern Indian Detours drive, from Las Vegas, New Mexico, to the Grand Canyon, is still the great tourism drive of the West,” he says.
October 28 – November 20, 2021
Written by Sicangu Lakota playwright Larissa FastHorse, this Santa Fe Playhouse production is a satire about four white people trying to put on a politically correct school play about the first Thanksgiving.
Plus, don't miss this interview with director Morningstar Angeline.
November 6, 2021
Grab a turkey leg and yell “Huzzah!” for the jousters on horseback at the 50th annual faire.
November 10 – 14, 2021
Kicking off with the Native American trio Red Hot & Red, the five-day shindig includes concerts by France’s Django Festival Allstars and singer-saxophonist Grace Kelly.
November 18 – 20, 2021
Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge celebrates the fall migration of sandhill cranes with an all-virtual weekend of birding, photography, conservation webinars, and a dawn fly-out.
For a calendar of events, visit newmexico.org/events.