1 Visit new shows at the Wheelwright Museum.

Santa Fe’s Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian kicks off 2024 with two new exhibitions, Pathfinder: 40 Years of Marcus Amerman and Master Glass: The Collaborative Spirit of Tony Jojola, opening on Saturday.

Pathfinder explores the prolific career of Marcus Amerman (Choctaw), a multi-disciplinary artist who created the medium of photobeadilism, which displays complex images and portraits in beadwork. Amerman’s work has influenced other artists, innovated Indigenous art, and created its own visual language. He’s collaborated with artists like Cara Romero (Chemehuevi) and Preston Singletary (Tlingit), and their collaborative creations are part of this new exhibit. See it through January 11, 2025.

Master Glass displays a collection of Isleta Pueblo glass artist Tony Jojola’s works and is the first exhibition since his death in 2022. Vessels, fetishes, and totems appear in bright organic colored glass, a medium that Jojola viewed as an extension of clay, calling it “clay you can’t touch.” Jojola worked with famous glass artist Dale Chihuly, who said, “Tony was one of the most generous and creative people I have ever known. We shared many meaningful and creative moments together.” Jojola studied at the Institute of American Indian Arts under Carl Ponca (Osage), and at the Pilchuck Glass School in Washington before establishing the Taos Glass Workshop in 1999, with ambition to teach the medium to Indigenous youth. See the retrospective of his work through June 9.

Indulge in a delectable celebration of Mayan chocolate at the Chocolate Fantasia festival in Silver City, where over 20 chocolatiers offer a wide array of mouthwatering treats. Photograph courtesy of Chocolate Fantasia.

2 Enjoy some decadent chocolate.

This year’s Chocolate Fantasia festival in Silver City highlights the art of Mayan chocolate, emphasizing the delicacy as an ingredient that hails from North America. On Saturday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., chocolatiers gather to offer delicious, chocolatey confections inspired by “xocolátl,” the Mayan word for chocolate, which played an important role in the ancient culture.

“Local businesses participate and host the chocolatiers in their businesses,” says Simon Sotelo, event coordinator at Chocolate Fantasia. More than 20 chocolatiers make everything from chocolate-covered brandied cherries and turtles to chocolate ginger cake and cupcakes with ganache. “The festival helps bring people into local businesses and experience the downtown rural America main street feeling,” Sotelo says.

Little Toad Creek Brewery & Distillery features a special chocolate themed menu and a live performance by the Illusion Band on Friday. On Saturday, try as many chocolates as you can and cast your vote for the best one at Javelina Coffee House by 3 p.m.

Experience the vibrant spirit of Carnival with the 19th annual Carnaval 2024 featuring an electrifying performance by Odara Dance Ensemble. Photograph courtesy of Odara Dance Ensemble.

3 Dance the night away.

For many countries around the world, Carnival is a time of partying, celebrations, and excess before Lent begins. It includes colorful parades and stunning sparkly outfits. Albuquerque’s National Hispanic Cultural Center’s 19th annual Carnaval 2024: Comunidade, features Frank Leto & PANdemonium, an Afro-Cuban group, and Pilar Leto & the Odara Dance Ensemble. Catch performances on Friday and Saturday at 7:30 p.m.

Catch Afro-Indigenous musician and artist Lucaa's debut performance at ILLUMINATE. Photograph courtesy of Lucaa/@lucaaband.

4 Dive into Santa Fe’s art scene.

Santa Fe’s most creative spaces and faces are highlighted during Art + Sol. The 10-day festival starts Friday, includes music and dance performances, comedy shows, and museum exhibitions curated by Hilary Palanza Gutkin, CEO of the International Museum of Dance, and Emma Scherer, executive director at the Santa Fe Symphony Orchestra and Chorus.

On Saturday at 6 p.m., the Center for Contemporary Arts (CCA) hosts ILLUMINATE, an immersive experience of Indigenous dance, music, and fashion created in partnership with 4Kinship’s Indigenous Futures Fund. “It’s an opportunity to see the future of Indigenous arts,” Palanza Gutkin says. “The performers will be wearing bespoke fashion from Josh Tafoya and other Native brands.”

On Sunday at the CCA, catch a self-care workshop from 9:30 a.m. to noon, as well as a panel discussion with dancers and community members envisioning the future of dance in New Mexico at 6 p.m. Other Art + Sol events include symphony performances, a Mardi Gras celebration with live music by Delfeayo Marsalis and the Uptown Jazz Orchestra, a sneak peek into this year’s lineup at the Santa Fe Playhouse, a Meow Wolf concert, and more. See the full schedule on Art + Sol’s website.

The Valentine Market will feature farms, chefs, food trucks, bakers, and artisan items.

5 Celebrate Valentine’s Day.

I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change

A series of theatrical vignettes examine the many forms and stages of love, from first dates to marriage, in the No Strings Theatre Company production, I Love You, You’re Perfect, Now Change. Directed by Kate Keyser, the play runs Friday–Sunday (plus a special performance on Valentine’s Day) at the Black Box Theatre in Las Cruces until February 25.

Valentine’s Market at the Rail Yards

The Rail Yards Market in Albuquerque hosts a two-day pop-up market on Saturday and Sunday from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. with more than 150 local vendors selling tons of Valentine’s Day goodies. Shop local flowers, chocolates, and handmade gifts or make your own Valentine at a crafting station. There’s also a chance to listen to live music each day at noon, visit a pet adoption booth, and snap a cute pic in a photo booth.

Friends & Lovers Balloon Rally

Hot-air balloons take to the skies over Rio Rancho this weekend during the Friends & Lovers Balloon Rally. On Friday, kick off the festivities with the Rock and Roll Rally at Dave and Buster’s. On Saturday and Sunday, see the balloons lift off from the Rio Rancho Civic Center, which is a new location for the event.

Love at Bishop’s Lodge

Works by artists including Alexandra Eldridge, Tracy Hollister, Cody Brothers, and Jeddadiah Emanuel, focus on love and the many ways it appears in and shapes our lives in the group exhibit Love, opening on Friday from 4 to 6 p.m. at Bobby Beals Presents, the gallery at Bishop’s Lodge, in Santa Fe.

Read more: For more things to do, check out our online calendar of events.