Festivals and Fairs

From the Deming Duck Races and Whole Enchilada Festival in Las Cruces to the Lincoln County Cowboy Symposium and world-famous International Balloon Festival in Albuquerque, New Mexico offers an exciting cornucopia of fairs, festivals, and expositions in every field of human endeavor.

Festivals celebrating films, folk art, food, cars, kites, music, wildlife, rivers, cowboys- even pies and UFOs -join with small-town fiestas, Spanish markets, wine carnivals, motorcycle rallies and seasonal celebrations at the Native American pueblos and tribes to fill the state’s annual calendar with food and fun found nowhere else.

Lincoln County Cowboy Symposium

“...The Symposium welcomes more than 20,000 visitors annually”

One of the nation’s premier cowboy events, the Lincoln County Cowboy Symposium, returns to the Ruidoso Downs Race Track every fall.

The Symposium – named one of North America's top 100 events by the American Bus Association - welcomes more than 20,000 visitors annually to celebrate all things Western: from cowboy poets, musicians, and chuck wagon cooks to horsemanship demonstrations, Western artists and vendors.

Highlights of the Symposium include the World Championship Chuckwagon Competition (featured on the Food Network's “All-American Festivals”), with prizes totaling $13,000; demonstrations of many different types of horse-related activities, including horsemanship with Craig Cameron, roping, and blacksmithing, and booths brimming with western arts and crafts; activities for the children, including dummy roping, stick-horse barrel racing, goat roping and a goat/sheep scramble; and live music around every corner, plus Friday and Saturday night dances.

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The Great American Duckrace

“...The annual Great American Duck Race in Deming - offering a family fun-fest featuring fast duck race competitions”

The annual Great American Duck Race in Deming - offering a family fun-fest featuring fast duck race competitions, Duck Dances, a softball tournament, a carnival, hot air balloons, barbecues, parades, craft vendors and nonstop entertainment - is August 24-26, 2012.

The theme for this year's Great American Duck Race is New Mexico Centennial, Celebrating 100 Years.

Most Duck Race activities take place at or near McKinley Duck Downs (the Luna County Courthouse Park) unless otherwise noted:

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Festival of the Cranes

“...The Refuge is 57,331 acres located along the Rio Grande near Socorro, located at the northern edge of the Chihuahuan desert.”

The annual Festival of the Cranes offers something for everyone: from backyard birders to bird experts, from amateur photographers to pros.

Activities include refuge tours; bird, biology, geology and art workshops; keynote speakers; and much more. The Festival highlights the world-renowned Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, which is in its 72nd year of managing the refuge for the benefit of wildlife and their habitat.

Members of the Audubon Council of New Mexico, the Central New Mexico Audubon Society, the American Birding Association and the Friends of the Bosque Board will be on hand at the observation decks around the Bosque tour loops to assist visitors with questions and to share their birding expertise and scopes.

Lectures are offered for a variety of wildlife related subjects.  Lecture topics include photography, bird identification and wildlife painting. Workshops are conducted in the field or special facilities.

The Refuge is 57,331 acres located along the Rio Grande near Socorro, located at the northern edge of the Chihuahuan desert. The heart of the Refuge is about 12,900 acres of moist bottomlands - 3,800 acres are active floodplain of the Rio Grande and 9,100 acres are areas where water is diverted to create extensive wetlands, farmlands, and riparian forests.

Roswell UFO Festival

“...In early July 1947, a mysterious object crashed on a ranch 30 miles north of Roswell.”

In early July 1947, a mysterious object crashed on a ranch 30 miles north of Roswell. The Roswell Army Air Field (RAAF) issued a statement claiming to have recovered a crashed “flying disk,” and an article ran on the front page of the Roswell Daily Record. The next day, however, the RAAF changed its statement to say that the object was a weather balloon. The statement sparked immediate controversy and has continued to be a topic of debate.

MainStreet Roswell, Roswell Parks and Recreation, Roswell Museum and Art Center, the Roswell Runners Club, and Roswell Lodgers Tax are inviting UFO enthusiasts and skeptics alike to join in the celebration of this “debate,” of the Roswell Incident at the UFO Festival.

Guest speakers, authors, live entertainment, a costume contest, a pet costume contest, parade, a low-rider and funny car show and contest highlight this family-friendly event.

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Santa Fe Fiestas A New Mexico Tradition Since 1712

“...The cry of “Viva la Fiesta” has been reverberating through the streets of Old Santa Fe every autumn for 301 years.”

To honor and preserve the annual Fiesta de Santa Fe in accordance with the spirit and letters outlined in the original Fiesta Proclamation issued by the Santa Fe City Council on September 16,1712, while staying true to time honored tradition with goals of educating the community, portraying a positive public image, and upholding the historical significance of the festival.

The cry of “Viva la Fiesta” has been reverberating through the streets of Old Santa Fe every autumn for 301 years. The sound generates a curious blend of thanksgiving, revelry and pride in the hearts of Santa Feans who celebrate Fiesta annually to commemorate Don Diego De Vargas’ peaceful reoccupation of the City of Holy Faith in 1692.

The historic capital is one of the oldest in the United States. It was established by Don Juan de Oñate at San Gabriel in 1598 and moved over 30 miles south to the foot of the Sangre de Cristo Mountains where Santa Fe was founded in 1610. In 1680 the Indians revolted, burned the city and drove out the Spanish colonists, who fled to Guadalupe del Paso, now Juarez, Mexico. They rescued from the burning church the 29-inch wood carved Marian statue, La Conquistadora, originally brought to Santa Fe in 1625 by the missionary, Fray Alonso de Benavides.

New Mexico State Fair

“...There is a lot to love about the fair, whether a young child enjoying the barnyard animals or a teen swinging high in the air on a thrill ride. ”

The New Mexico State Fair remains one of the largest fairs in the nation, with PRCA rodeo and nationally known country-western recording stars, and the Indian and Spanish villages - all the makings for a fantastic family experience!

Presided over by the State Fair Queen, the New Mexico State Fair offers livestock exhibits and competitions of all kinds to local farmers, ranchers, and 4H club members, while school children from all over the state look forward to seeing their art work displayed in one of the exhibit halls.

Stop by the midway and checkout the excitement of rides and games of skill. The snacks are plentiful with the classic cotton candy, caramel apples, and snow cones. The exhibit halls are packed with the finest arts, crafts and livestock that New Mexico has to offer: great music, dancing, artwork, demonstrations and traditional food.

Mark your calendars for this year’s New Mexico State Fair. It will be here before you know it.

September 10 – 21, 2014

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It’s FREE to park again at this year’s New Mexico State Fair!

Due to the new Downs Casino, Gate 9 (Louisiana just north of Central) is out-of-service. Fairgoers may enter through Gate 1 (Central Avenue) and Gate 8 (Louisiana just south of Lomas). Parking inside either Gate 1 or Gate 8 is FREE!

Preferred Paid Parking is available on a limited basis in some lots. Just ask a friendly Parking Attendant.


Adults (age 12-64): $10

Seniors (age 65 and up): $7

Children (age 6-11) $7

Little Ones (age 0-5) FREE

For More Information & Schedule Visit Thier Website

Golden Aspen Motorcycle Rally Ruidoso

“...Held in the beautiful mountains of Ruidoso & Mescalero”

More than 35,000 motorcycles are anticipated when the annual Ruidoso Golden Aspen Motorcycle Rally and Trade Show roars into the valley in September.

Sponsored by the Golden Aspen Rally Association, the rally, which will headquarter at the Ruidoso Downs Race Track on US 70, features a daily trade show in the 86,000 square-foot pavilion, plus food and beverage, poker runs Wednesday through Saturday, field events and games, giveaways, the crowning of the Golden Aspen Rally Queen and King, a motorcycle parade through midtown on Saturday, beginning at 10 a.m., followed by a hill climb at 11 a.m.

Lea County Fair & Rodeo

“...One Great County...One Great Fair”

Don’t miss the 78th Annual Lea County Fair and Rodeo August 2nd thru 10th in Lovington! The largest county fair and rodeo in New Mexico will be bigger and better than ever! Spend Saturday night August 3rd with The Texas Jamm Band ft. members of George Strait's Ace in the Hole Band, Sunday August 4th with Graciela Beltran and Rogelio Martinez at the Hispanic Heritage Celebration, the Randy Rogers Band with special guest Morgan Frazier on Tuesday, August 6th, Faith and Family Night Wednesday August 7th with Jeremy Camp, Thursday August 8th it’s the Josh Abbott Band, Friday August 9th Sara Evans and Party Saturday August 10th with Josh Turner! The 78th Lea County Fair and Rodeo PRCA XTREME Bulls will be held Tuesday night and the PRCA Rodeo will have nightly performances Wednesday thru Saturday. Come join the biggest and best carnival with Wright’s Amusements, pig races from Hambone Express, local team roping, and a fiddler's contest like you won’t see anywhere else. Go to Lea County.net for all the information and make plans to attend the 78th annual Lea County Fair and Rodeo August 2nd-10th in Lovington, NM.

Ruidoso Aspenfest

Celebrate Autumn in Ruidoso with a weekend of great golf, cool cars, hot chili, great crafts and a festive parade!

AspenFest, Ruidoso’s annual fall celebration, the first weekend in October, allows residents and visitors alike to participate in the celebration of our caring community, the cool crispness of the coming fall and the beauty that is Ruidoso. AspenFest weekend is kicked off every year with a parade Saturday at 10 a.m. through Midtown Ruidoso and features a Golf Tournament on Sunday. Proceeds from Sunday’s Golf Tournament go to scholarships for Ruidoso area students.

“Everybody loves a parade and mixing with chile, cars and crafts is a homerun. The fall is a time for tradition and friends and our mountain is the perfect spot.”