Santa Fe Tidbits: Harvest Festival, Bandelier National Monument, recycled art and more…

The biggest event this month, The Santa Fe Harvest Festival, starts today. The event is a foodie’s dream. There are events such as an Iron Chef-style cook off with local chefs, cooking classes, dining discounts and more. Come join the fun.

Here are some other happenings in Santa Fe and the area.


Good news for visitors to Bandelier National Monument. The site that was home to the ancestors of the current-day Cochiti people reopened to cars Monday, October 31st. The Monument, closed due to the Las Conchas Fire at the end of June, opened on a limited basis September 26th. Visitors were bused in to the site from White Rock, east of Bandelier. Bandelier is the site of cliff dwellings abandoned about a thousand years ago. The site is operating on their normal winter schedule. They’re open daily from 9am to 4:30pm. Monday also marked the reopening of the Upper Falls Trail. On a sad note: Lower Falls Trail has collapsed beyond repair. You can no longer reach them and the Rio Grande below. Also reopening are: Frijolito Trail, both Ski Trails near Forest Road 289, and the Cerro Grande Route. The popular Alcove House, set on a cliff and accessed by ladders, remains closed. Officials hope to be able to reopen it next spring.

Bandelier Hike

The Cliff Dwelling at Bandelier National Monument, photo/Joy C. Frank-Collins

Congratulations to the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives. They are the recipient of the New Mexico Association of Museums’ 2011 Edgar L. Hewett Award for Excellence. The award is named for the first director of the Museum of New Mexico, Edgar Lee Hewett. His long-time tenure in this post was from1909 until his death in 1946. The Archives, with items dating from 1843 to the present, have an extensive collection of historic photographs, films, glass plate negatives, photo postcards, and more. Over 16,000 of the 800,000 images in the collection are available on-line.

Buffalo Soldiers

Buffalo Soldiers, at Ft. Wingate, N.M.,1899. Photo by Imperial Photo Gallery, courtesy of the Palace of the Governors Photo Archives, Neg. No. 098373.


If you’ve never seen sand hill cranes and are in Santa Fe or New Mexico any time from November 15th to 20th, put the Festival of the Cranes on your local bucket list. The event, held in Socorro and at the Bosque del Apache National Wildlife Refuge, offers workshops, demonstrations and more. This yearly event, started in 1988, celebrates these magnificent birds that winter along the Rio Grande River south of Albuquerque. There will be tour buses taking festival attendees to and through the Refuge where the cranes spend the winter. The big birds are attracted to the refuge because of the shallow ponds there. The other thing they like about this area, according to festival coordinator, Robyn Harrison, is the official New Mexico State Vegetable, the chile. It gives them a spicy change from their normal diet which relies heavily grains, especially corn.

Cranes at Bosque del Apache

Cranes coming in for the night at Bosque del Apache Wildlife Refuge, photo Steve Collins

You can also skip the festival and tour the refuge in your car. If you can’t make it to the festival or live here and don’t like crowds, the birds can be found at the Bosque from November through February. At its peak, the population will be about 5,000. Snow Geese also winter at Bosque Apache.

The refuge is open daily; the fee is $5 per car per day. The best times to view the cranes are at sunrise and sunset when they fly out or in for the day.


Karen Chase, mother of Santa Fe artist Matthew Chase-Daniel (one of the owners of Axle Contemporary, the gallery on wheels), will be reading from her new work, Jamali-Kamali: A Tale of Passion in Mughal India at Collected Works Bookstore and Coffeehouse on November 10th at 6pm. Chase, a poet, was inspired to write this book-long poem by a visit to the grave of Jamali, 16th century Sufi Court poet, while in India. Buried next to him is Kamali. Some believe the two were homosexual lovers while others believe that Kamali was the poet’s wife. To make it more mysterious and confusing, others believe that Kamali was Jamali’s nom de plume. Chase explores their life and love in her poem.

Author Karen Chase

Poet Karen Chase will read from her new work, "Jamali-Kamali" at Collected Works, photo/Ogden Gigli


If you love the idea of art reusing trash or other discards, the 13th annual Recycle Santa Fe Art Festival is an event you won’t want to miss. It takes place Friday, November 11th through Sunday, November 13th at El Museo Cultural de Santa Fe located in the Railyard District. Over 50 artists will exhibit here. Work on display must be created from a minimum of 75% recycled materials to create their work. “The event is truly shaping into one of the most unique art markets in the country,” says event coordinator, Sarah Pierpont, “with artists traveling from across the nation to participate. “ In addition to local artists, exhibitors are coming from Colorado, Illinois, Alaska, Arizona, Texas and Wyoming. If you are a fan of Steampunk art, there are examples of it at the show. (Read our post on local artist Julie Anderson who will be showing her Steampunk art and more at the show.)

Recycled art

A booth at the 2009 Recycle Santa Fe Art Festival , photo/Steve Collins

The weekend kicks off with the Trash Fashion & Costume Contest. Entrants strut down the runway in costumes made from recycled materials. Anyone can participate and there are prizes awarded in each category. Entry forms are available on their website. Young artists, from pre-K to 12th grade can enter their work in the Youth Art Exhibit. Prizes will be awarded in each age category. Kids can create their own recycled art at the “make-and-take corner” on Saturday and Sunday.

Hours are Friday from 5 to 9pm, Saturday from 9am to 5pm and Sunday from 10am to 5pm. Admission to the Art Market is $5 on Friday night. If you want to attend the fashion show, the combined admission is $10. Admission to the show is free on Saturday and Sunday. Kids are admitted free all weekend.

If you have any Santa Fe tidbits to share with us, we’d love to hear it.


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