1 Immerse yourself in art.
Treat yourself to an art-filled weekend in Santa Fe, where you can see ancient, traditional, and innovative works in two new exhibits and a quintessential market.
Traditional Spanish Market
Booths take over the Santa Fe Plaza during the 70th annual Traditional Spanish Market, held Saturday and Sunday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Hundreds of artists representing 19 traditional crafts, including colcha embroidery, painted bultos, pottery, carved retablos, weaving, and straw appliqué, set up shop. Spanish Market also includes live musical and dance performances on the Plaza stage. Look forward to Las Flores del Valle, the Chris Arellano Band, Emi Arte Flamenco, Los Trinos, and Gonzalo. (While there, also visit the adjacent Contemporary Hispanic Market to see how artists color outside the lines.)
Grounded in Clay
Ancient and modern pieces of pueblo pottery—nearly all of them hand-picked by Pueblo people—appear in a glorious new exhibit, Grounded In Clay: The Spirit of Pueblo Pottery, opening Sunday at the Museum of Indian Arts & Culture (MIAC). More than 100 works represent the pots as vessels of community-based knowledge and personal experience. Organized by the School for Advanced Research, MIAC, and the New York–based Vilcek Foundation, the exhibit premieres at noon with a party that includes demonstrations, dances, a panel discussion, and live music by the Adrian Wall Trio. See it now! In 2023, the exhibit moves to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, in New York City.
Working with Kin
Heidi Brandow curated Working with Kin, opening at Form & Concept Friday with a 5–7 p.m. reception. Brandow gathered works from her chosen family—Nigel Paul Conway, Jamison Chas Banks, Eliza Naranjo Morse, Alex Peña, and herself. Jordan Eddy, Form & Concept’s director, calls the show “kind of like a house party. It’s a remarkable group of friends. They have distinct practices, but they’ve all collaborated at different points, and you can feel this vibrational influence running through the colors, patterns and forms. There’s a defiant punk-rock spirit to it all that melds with a cartoon aesthetic. Sounds like a good party, no?” See the exhibit through October 1.
2 Roll into Las Vegas.
During the Spanish–American War in the late 1890s, Theodore Roosevelt recruited cowboys for his 1st Volunteer Calvary Regiment, finding most of them in western regions, including the New Mexico territory. The ragtag band of fighters became known as the Rough Riders, forming close bonds of friendship while they attempted to free Cuba, then a Spanish colony. In 1899, the group held a Rough Rider Reunion in Las Vegas, New Mexico. The event soon became a tradition. Today, the Rough Rider Motorcycle Rally honors that spirit by gathering motorcyclists from around the country. They’ll rumble into town on Friday, and you’re invited, too, for live music at Plaza Park, vendors selling handmade wares, and a motorcycle show.
3 Revel in Cuban life.
Under the tantalizing title of “Secrets, Spies, and Spanish Rice: Six Decades of the Cuban-American Experience,” novelist and scholar Robert Arellano dives into what happened after the Cuban Missile Crisis, when droves of immigrants remade their lives in the United States. His talk, which includes Latin jazz and historic photos, takes place at 6 p.m. Thursday at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, in Albuquerque. Arellano has written award-winning books like Havana Lunar and Havana Libre. Levi Romero, the inaugural New Mexico poet laurate and a professor at the University of New Mexico, introduces him.
4 Play fair.
The Lea County Fair and Rodeo starts Friday and runs through next weekend offering everything from a concert series to a carnival, PRCA rodeo, and a horse show. The 86th annual event’s theme is Honoring Our Heritage and includes a Hispanic Heritage Celebration this Friday at 7 p.m. Live musical performances start midweek and run through next weekend with Americana classics by Cody Johnson, cowboy love songs and originals by Randall King, stellar tunes from vocalist Zach Williams, and more. Now, be honest: Have you ever seen mutton busting? Little kids riding sheep, holding on for dear life? It’s adorable. Catch it on Saturday at 7 p.m.
5 Feel free.
A car cruise, a circus performance, live music, and a beer garden make up the Route 66 Freedom Festival, which includes a motorcycle freedom ride benefiting veterans. Head to the Gallup Chamber of Commerce parking lot on Friday at 6 p.m. to catch the car cruise. On Saturday, see amazing vehicles at the car show, from 8:30 a.m. to noon, on Aztec Avenue downtown. Wise Fool’s trapeze artists go aerial at noon on the Gallup Courthouse Square, then wander the crowd showing off circus tricks through the afternoon. The Silver Country Band takes the stage at 5:30 p.m., and the Black Pearl Band follows at 9 p.m. The evening ends with a “tunnel of light” welcoming the motorcyclists to town.