At Santa Fe’s Pancakes on the Plaza, thousands stand in line for hotcakes whipped up, ladled out, and flipped by teams of volunteers from local organizations, such as the Rotary Club of Santa Fe, which hosts the event. Although ostensibly about the pancakes, served from early morning through the noon hour, the event is really about catching up with friends and meeting new ones, feeling a part of the community, and knowing that the money raised supports many nonprofits throughout the year. Dance to live music at the Plaza bandstand, check out a cool car show, and purchase gifts from local artisans. 7 a.m.–noon. $6. (505) 274-2266; pancakesontheplaza.com

Many cities and towns throughout New Mexico host Fourth of July celebrations. From the Fire on the Fourth motorcycle show in Angel Fire to a rubber duckie race at Taos Ski Valley and fireworks over Elephant Butte Lake(July 6), patriotism and parties abound.

JULY 5–7


Don’t wait for Halloween to break out that alien costume. Head to Roswell for the annual UFO Festival, a three-day celebration of all things extraterrestrial, including the 66th anniversary of the famous alleged UFO sighting in 1947. “This year we are again offering plenty of stage and street entertainment, and Nezbit the Alien will visit again,” says organizer Juliana Halvorson. Guest speakers, authors, a parade, and a costume contest (for you and your pets) with cash prizes will ensure that your weekend is out of this world. Free. (575) 624-7704; ufofestivalroswell.com

JULY 6–7


Raise a glass (the one included in your entry fee) at the Santa Fe Wine Festival at Rancho de las Golondrinas. Sixteen New Mexico wineries will offer samples—a great way to zero in on faves without a lot of full-bottle trial and error. “New Mexico was the first wine-making state, so we’ve had hundreds of years to get it right,” says organizer Amanda Crocker. “There are wines for every taste coming out of New Mexico: dry, sweet, sparkling, fruity, and even chocolaty.” Noon–6 p.m. $13. (505) 471-2261; santafewinefestival.com

JULY 12–14


“Our location is what sets us apart from other powwows,” says Debbie Lujan, an organizer of the 28th annual Taos Pueblo Pow Wow. “Where else can you find a wooden arbor in grassy meadows situated beneath the majestic Taos Mountain? If you’re lucky enough, you might catch a glimpse of the roaming buffalo on the adjacent pasture lands.” The tribal gathering is known for “the colorful pageantry of the Native American dancers, and the intensity of the singers and their drums,” according to Lujan. “Many local artists of the region are represented, and there’s a variety of tasty foods to be sampled.” $10. (575) 741-0181; taospueblopowwow.com



Despite growing up not far from the New Mexico border, the last time Texan Joe Ely played in Ruidoso was in the early ’80s, at a little bar on Main Street. More than three decades later, the Lubbock native returns to southeastern New Mexico, this time to the Spencer Theater, in nearby Alto. No sign so far of fellow Flatlanders Jimmie Dale Gilmore and Butch Hancock, but it’s a sure bet Ely will be drawing on the band’s extensive repertoire as well as his own impressive songbook. 8 p.m. $66–$69. (888) 818-7872; spencertheater.com

JULY 20–21


Want a cool warm-up for Santa Fe Indian Market? Escape the heat at the Ohkay Owingeh Arts & Crafts Show and Market (formerly the Eight Northern Pueblo Arts & Crafts Show), now in its 40th year. Held indoors at the Ohkay Conference Center and Hotel Casino, the event offers 15,000 square feet of Native American crafts, foods, music, and dance. “This event is unique, as it showcases so many tribes from around the country in one awesome venue,” says marketing manager Belinda Chavez. “We also showcase as many Native American dance teams as we can.” More than 100 artists will display their goods, which include jewelry, garments, drums, flutes, pottery, and painting. Representatives from the Indian Arts and Crafts Board will be available to assist both buyers and artists. 8 a.m.–4 p.m. Free. (505) 852-4400; ohkay.com

JULY 20–21


Celebrate—and welcome—our neighbors to the south at ¡Viva Mexico!, a festive tribute to Mexican culture, cuisine, and arts hosted at Rancho de las Golondrinas by the Mexican Consulate in Albuquerque. New this year is a charreada rodeo, which focuses on trick riding, fancy lassoing; and an escaramuza, an eight-horse, all-female drill team. “The riding is dazzling, the athleticism of the riders and the reliability of the horses are astonishing, and the dress is totally fabulous,” says John Berkenfield, executive director of Las Golondrinas. “They are a wonderful, exciting group.” The Mercado Mexicano includes a food tent featuring authentic cuisine, cooking and weaving demonstrations, mariachi music, ballet folklórico, a Mexican candy shop, and piñatas for the kids. Don’t forget your sombrero. 10 a.m.–5 p.m. $8. 505) 471-2261; golondrinas.org

JULY 22–27


At the Eddy County Fair in Artesia, “We reach down into the ranch heritage and try to have events that honor ranching, farming, and agriculture,” explains Debbie Bell, who’s been a volunteer organizer for more than a decade. “This year, we’ll have an all-girls ranch rodeo, which goes back to the good ol’ days of ranching, competing in events such as cow milking and sorting cattle on horseback.” Bull-riding and roping events are scheduled, along with a lively livestock sale. Last year, 126 animals were sold in less than four hours, for more than a half million dollars. Even if you don’t go home with a pony, the auction is worth watching. Free. (575) 746-2744; artesiachamber.com



In the late ’60s, one of the most-asked questions in Taos was “Where is the Navajo Gallery?” Celebrities, scenesters, and art buffs streamed into the mountain town to encounter Diné artist R.C. Gorman and his work. If he wasn’t out of town—say, hanging out with Andy Warhol in New York—pilgrims found him bedecked in gold, beads, bandanas, and a Hawaiian shirt, surrounded by his work, in his Taos gallery. This period in Gorman’s career is captured in one of the Harwood’s summer exhibitions, R.C. Gorman: The 1960s. (575) 758-9826; harwoodmuseum.org



Now in its fourth month at the Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum, New Mexico’s African American Legacy: Visible, Vital, Valuable showcases local African-American society and culture. “This gives insight into a part of New Mexico’s history that hasn’t been told very often before,” says spokesman Craig Massey. The exhibit examines the western migrations of African-Americans to New Mexico, segregation, integration, social organizations, and churches. $5, $3 seniors, $2 children. (575) 522-4100; nmfarmandranchmuseum.org