Coronado State Monument’s free Christmas event for all the family puts a festive glow in the ruins and includes cider and biscochitos! The monument’s name was recently changed. It is now called the Coronado Historic Site, but a lot of people won’t have caught on to that yet. I can’t get into the habit of calling it anything but the Coronado State Monument (sounds a lot more impressive to me too!) but I will be a good girl and refer to it by the correct name from now on.
The Christmas at Kuaua event at Coronado Historic Site lights up the luminarias on the evening of Sunday December 8, 2013, from 5 pm.
The evening’s activities include a Santa’s Workshop for kids to make a Christmas tree ornament. That is followed at 6 pm by Native American storytelling, traditional Pueblo dancing, and music. Amidst the luminarias and Christmas lights, they’ll have a lovely bonfire too, assuming the weather conditions are right. I believe there will also be night sky viewing with the Rio Rancho Astronomical Group.
Admission is free, and to help everyone keep warm (with or without a bonfire) the Friends of Coronado will also provide free hot apple cider and biscochitos.
Coronado Historic Site Christmas at Kuaua gets festive:
- When: Sunday December 8, 2013
- Time: From 5 pm
- Where: Coronado Historic Site (a.k.a. Coronado State Monument) in Bernalillo
- Price: Admission is free!
Coronado Historic Site is just off I-25, at exit 242, in Bernalillo.
You’d have to be walking around with your eyes shut not to know about this already. But hey, we’re all busy people. Maybe you forgot about it. Or maybe you just flew into the Duke City and never knew about it in the first place.
This year the Twinkle Light Parade and Nob Hill Holiday Shop and Stroll are both combined again in Nob Hill on the same day: Saturday December 7, 2013.
The Nob Hill Holiday Shop and Stroll runs from from noon to 10 pm on December 7, when everyone hobnobs in Nob Hill with street performers, mariachi groups, and carol singers to get us into the festive spirit. They close Central Avenue off to cars between Girard and Washington between those hours, so pedestrians can wander at will along historic Route 66. Of course there are lots of shopping opportunities, with many boutiques staying open late, some stores offering discounts, and a lively atmosphere in the restaurants.
- There will be photo ops with Santa Claus – he usually rolls by on the Twinkle Light Parade too.
- A jolly trolley from Albuquerque Trolley Co. will run free shuttle rides along Central between noon and 4 pm.
- Albuquerque Film & Media Experience will show a free outdoor screening (bundle up!) of the movie National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation at 7:45 pm. That’s at 3712 Central Ave, between Hermosa and Solano.
- O’Niell’s Pub will serve free coffee and cider on the enclosed patio.
The Nob Hill Holiday Shop and Stroll map gives all the skinny and shows what’s happening where.
If you download the PDF of the Nob Hill Shop and Stroll program you’ll find a few coupons too, although not as many as in previous years.
- 10% off one item at Gertrude Zachary
- $10 off at Yanni’s Mediterranean Grill when you order two entrees (valid to January 1, 2014)
- 10% off at Yanni’s new Lemoni Lounge (valid to September 1, 2014)
The Twinkle Light Parade starts glitzing at 5:15 pm on December 7, traveling west along Central Avenue from Washington Street to Girard Boulevard. Bleachers will make it easier for everyone to watch the parade. The City of Albuquerque reckons that there are more than 100 floats (cars, horses, anything they can gussy up with sparkly lights) in the parade this year. I do so love this festive event, but dress warmly – I’ve nearly frozen my tootsies off watching the parade in previous years.
Celebrate Noche de Luces at the historic Casa San Ysidro. It’s free for all the family on December 7, 2013.
Casa San Ysidro in Corrales is part of the Albuquerque Museum of Art and History, and tours (only offered on specified dates/times) generally cost $4 for adults. In any case it’s closed during December and January. UNLESS….you get in the holiday spirit and join them for the free Casa San Ysidro Noche de Luces event this Saturday, December 7 from 5 – 8 pm.
Casa San Ysidro celebrates the holiday season by welcoming one and all to enjoy its decorations of farolitos and holiday greens. The free event includes a craft activity, a display of traditional New Mexican artifacts, and music by Breaking Blue in the grand sala. They will also be serving hot cider and cookies. Tra-la-la! Wrap up warmly as much of the activity is outdoors.
Casa San Ysidro Noche de Luces celebration takes place:
- When: Saturday December 7, 2013
- Time: 5 pm – 8 pm
- Price: Free admission for all
Casa San Ysidro is located at 973 Old Church Road in Corrales.
The Albuquerque Concert Band has been entertaining Albuquerque for more than 40 years, and they’re staying true to form with a free concert of holiday music.
The Albuquerque Concert Band free holiday concert is this Sunday December 8, at 3 pm, at the KiMo Theatre. I love holiday music and I had a wonderful time at this free concert the last time I went with friends.
It’s all very rousing and jovial, with plenty of family favorites to tap your toes to. The Albuquerque Concert Band and conductor even wore different festive headgear to accompany each song. I can’t guarantee they’ll be doing the same this year, but I can guarantee that they are terrific entertainment.
Short of Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer crash-landing on my head, I’ll be there first in line!
Doors open at 2:30 pm and it’s wise to arrive promptly as it’s a pretty full house in my experience.
Here are some free audio samples from Albuquerque Concert Band recordings to get you in the mood.
The KiMo Theatre is located at 423 Central Avenue NW.
The annual Return of the Sandhill Cranes celebration is back on November 16 and 17, 2013, offering plenty of free fun, including Tai Chi. (You do it with the cranes, although who knows if the cranes will join in?)
Albuquerque’s Return of the Sandhill Crane Celebration this weekend at the Open Space Visitor Center gets us all in a flap on Saturday and Sunday November 16 – 17. It’s a great opportunity to join with others to see the sandhill cranes traveling south for the winter. Whenever I see the large flocks of cranes migrating along the Rio Grande Valley I’m awed by their beauty and grace. I often want to fly away with them but I haven’t got the hang of that bit yet.
The free family event is not just about birdwatching through the viewing scopes, however. The line up includes:
- A guided Bosque bird walk (8:30 am on Saturday) plus a couple of fly-in and fly-out walks
- Tai Chi with the cranes at 9 am on both days
- Silk painting demonstration at 11 am on Saturday
- A tin punch workshop at 11:30 am on Saturday
- Two performances of the musical Love in the Bosque by Phil Bock, about a romance between cranes who pass through Albuquerque along the Rio Grande. (Cute! The performances are on Saturday at 1:30 and 3 pm.)
- See Wildlife Rescue birds from 10 am – 2 pm on Sunday (I always love that!)
- The Albuquerque Origami Society – they usually get everyone making origami cranes
- Films including Waking Up Crane and Stories of Wolves
- Children’s games and crafts, and solar scopes for everyone!
See the full Return of the Sandhill Crane Celebration 2013 schedule as some events only happen once. And check the times for anything you especially want to do, as all events are subject to change.
Albuquerque Open Space Visitor Center is located at 6500 Coors Boulevard NW. (East of Coors at the end of Bosque Meadows Road, between Montano Boulevard and Paseo del Norte.)
Here is our 2013 round-up of Albuquerque Veterans Day deals and freebies. Even if you’re not a service member, look in the For Everyone list below to find some Veterans Day deals for all.
There are tons of freebies for veterans and current military – as is only right and fitting. A heartfelt thank you for your service and sacrifice.
Some offers are valid only on November 11, others on other days, and most require proof of military service – check details at the links. Know of any other Veterans Day deals? Tell us in the comments box below!
Veterans Day Deals For Everyone
Free admission to National Parks for all visitors for three days over the Veterans Day weekend, from November 9 to November 11. This is the last of the National Parks free entrance days for 2013, and fees are waived at parks nationwide that usually a charge a fee, including these New Mexico National Parks.
Veterans Day Honor Free MP3s by the U.S. Armed Forces bands and ensembles, including the Star Spangled Banner, Taps, Here’s to America, Eternal Father, Strong to Save (The U.S. Navy Hymn), When Johnny Comes Marching Home, and more.
New Mexico Veterans Art Show Free admission to see work by artists who are veterans or serving in military, Reserve or National Guard forces. At EXPO New Mexico Fine Arts building, the show opens on November 8 with a reception at 6 pm and ceremony at 7 pm. Then the show runs from 10 am to 4 pm on these weekends: November 9/10, November 15/16/17 and November 22/23.
Thrift Town Veterans Day Sale 30% off clothing on Monday November 11, excluding gift cards and color tag items already discounted by 50%.
Savers Veterans Day Sale offers 50% off clothing, shoes, accessories, and bed and bath on November 11.
Living Social 10% Discount from November 8 – November 11 using the promo code: VETERANS10
The offer is valid on purchases site-wide and you get 10% off any order, up to a maximum discount of $20. There are some terms and conditions and redemption instructions here. At time of writing there are 68 Albuquerque deals on Living Social, from restaurants to massages, manicures, yoga, fly fishing, kids’ stuff and quite a lot more!
Veterans Day Deals For Military Only
Free Musical Theatre for Veterans. Thanks to Elizabeth at Desert Rose Playhouse for telling us that they are offering free admission for veterans to performances on Saturday November 9 at 8 pm or Sunday November 10 at 2 pm. The show is Dogfight the Musical, set in 1963 as three young Marines have a boys’ night out before heading to the conflict in Southeast Asia. Desert Rose Playhouse is located at 6921 Montgomery Blvd. NE. To redeem your freebie, make a reservation at (505) 881-0503 or email the box office.
Grace for Vets Free Car Wash on November 11 for veterans and current service personnel. According to the list of participating businesses nationwide, the Albuquerque car washes sudsing up for free are Airforce One Express Car Wash, and Octopus Car Wash locations. I heart Octopus – they always do a grand job on my car at such a fair price.
Half off Golf Course Green Fees on November 11 at all Albuquerque City courses for veterans. The four golf courses are Los Altos, Arroyo del Oso, Puerto del Sol and Ladera.
Free Hair Cut at Great Clips salons on November 11. OR it looks like you can just drop into the salon that day and pick up a card to redeem your free hair cut later, until December 31. Non-military folk who purchase a service at Great Clips on November 11 get a free haircut card to give to a veteran. Check for participation by calling ahead. (A head = pun, I just realized.) See the list of Albuquerque Great Clips salons
New Mexico Museum of Natural History and Science Free Admission for veterans on November 11 if you take your ID.
National Museum of Nuclear Science & History Free to military personnel on November 11. Take ID, and the free admission is good for both veterans and current service members.
Tucanos Brazilian Grill Free Meal Thanks to reader Michael for alerting me to this Tucanos offer! Current and former military members get a free meal on November 11, with military ID or proof of past service. Active service members and their families also get 10% off their entire meal from November 8 – 11. So if you go for the freebie on Veterans Day and take your family, they’ll get a 10% discount too. Tucanos also has a Facebook promotion to get a free dessert coupon when you send an Instagram photo of a family member or friend in uniform. Tucanos is Downtown, at 110 Central Avenue on the corner of 1st. (As if we could miss it!)
Denny’s Free Pancakes on November 11 from 6 am – 2 pm at participating Denny’s Restaurants. The free all-you-can-eat pancakes are for military personnel (retired, active or non-active) with ID.
Texas Roadhouse Free Lunch on November 11 for active, former, and retired military with ID. Select from a special free Veterans Day menu including sirloin steak, country fried chicken, and pulled pork dinner, all served with side dishes and beverages.
Olive Garden Free Meal for veterans and active military on November 11, with ID. Entrees include garlic breadsticks and soup or salad, and the Veterans Day free menu to select from includes spaghetti and meat sauce, chicken parmigiana, and seafood alfredo. Family dining with you get a 10% discount on their meals. Throughout the month of November, Olive Garden is giving 10% off to current military service members and their families.
Boston Market Free Whole Chicken with purchase. According to Boston Market’s Twitter post and Facebook page, you can get a free whole chicken on November 11 at any Boston Market when you purchase a family meal and show military ID.
Chili’s Veterans Eat Free deal gets active duty military and veterans a free entree all day on November 11 at participating locations. Menu options include margarita chicken, “Old Timer” with cheese, pizza, and more, with proof of military service.
Veterans and active duty military eat free at Applebee’s on November 11 with proof of military service. You get a free entree from a selection including house sirloin, Fiesta Lime Chicken, bacon cheeseburger, Double Crunch Shrimp and more.
California Pizza Kitchen Free Pizza on November 11 for veterans and active duty military in uniform or with proof of service.
Outback Steakhouse Veterans Day Freebie A free Bloomin’ Onion and any Coca-Cola drink on November 11. Plus 10% off for military personnel from November 12 to December 31, valid on the entire check apart from booze and tax. Military ID required – check out the required proofs at the Outback Steakhouse freebie page (scroll WAAAAAY down the bottom!)
Golden Corral also offers a free meal to veterans and active duty military members. This year their annual Military Appreciation Monday dinner will be held on November 11 from 4 – 9 pm.
Red Robin Free Burger and Fries on November 11 for veterans and active duty military in uniform or with proof of service. The freebie is a Red’s Tavern Double burger with Bottomless Steak Fries.
Einstein Bros. Bagels Free Bagel & Schmear on November 11 between 5:30 am and 5 pm. The offer is for a free bagel and shmear or any other topping, for active, inactive and retired military personnel.
Free Krispy Kreme Donut and Coffee on November 11 in stores (not drive-through) when you wear military uniform or show proof of service. Participating locations include Albuquerque Krispy Kreme stores at Ellison, Wyoming, and Coors.
Red Lobster is serving up a free appetizer from November 11 – 14 for veterans and current service members, according to a press release. Choose from 10 appetizers, including Lobster-Crab-and-Seafood-Stuffed Mushrooms and Sweet Chili Shrimp.
TGI Friday’s Free Lunch for veterans and active duty military on November 11 from 11 am to 2 pm.
Starbucks Free Coffee for veterans and active duty service members AND their spouses on November 11.
Twin Peaks Armed Forces Appreciation invites service men and women to eat free on November 11.
Hooters Free Meal on November 11. Veterans and active duty military personnel can score a free meal worth up to $10.99 with any drink purchase. Valid at all locations, but take military ID or proof of service!
Note: Not all locations may be participating, call ahead if you want to be sure! Follow the links I’ve given for each deal or venue to find further details, and info on the proof of military service required.
–Tania FYI, I’ve give my Amazon affiliate link for the free MP3s.
In honor of Veterans Day, all National Parks that usually charge admission fees are free for all visitors for three days over the Veterans Day weekend, from November 9-11, 2013.
The Veterans Day free admission to National Parks all weekend is in tribute to America’s current and previously serving armed forces. Although it’s in gratitude for their military service, the free entry applies to all visitors.
This is the last of the National Parks free entrance days for 2013, offering a great opportunity to to take a day trip, get outside, and make the most of these last fall days. If you’re in the mood for a weekend road trip, the free admissions include Grand Canyon National Park, Bryce Canyon, and Yellowstone National Park, among more than 100 parks waiving their fees.
New Mexico National Parks that usually charge a fee but are free from Saturday November 9 to Monday November 11 are:
- Aztec Ruins National Monument
- Bandelier National Monument
- Capulin Volcano National Monument
- Carlsbad Caverns National Park
- Chaco Culture National Historical Park
- El Morro National Monument
- Fort Union National Monument
- Gila Cliff Dwellings National Monument
- Pecos National Historical Park
- White Sands National Monument
Wherever you’re going, check current conditions at the park at the above links. They might have alerts about access or any areas of the parks that are closed. Some may have special free events you can join in too!
The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History is open with free admission to current and former military personnel on Veterans Day, November 11, 2013.
In honor of Veterans Day, the National Museum of Nuclear Science & History is free to military personnel with ID on November 11 from 9 am to 5 pm. In 2013, November 11 falls on a Monday. The free admission is good for both veterans and current service members, but remember to take your military ID.
If you get a chance to talk with one of the museum docents, do so! It’s been a highlight at the museum for me to talk with docents who have served in the military and are full of knowledge on the exhibits.
Usual admission is $8 for adults (aged 18-59), $6 for active military and their dependents, $7 for veterans, $7 for seniors 60+ and youngsters aged 6-17, and free for kids aged 5 and under.
The National Museum of Nuclear Science & History is located at 601 Eubank Boulevard SE, six blocks south of Central Avenue at the Southern Boulevard intersection.
Albuquerque BioPark celebrates Halloween with the annual Albuquerque Zoo Boo on October 26, 2013, and kids get free admission!
The 25th annual Albuquerque Zoo Boo haunts the Albuquerque BioPark Zoo on Saturday October 26, from 11 am to 4 pm. Four costumed children get free admission to the event with a paying adult, and adult admission is $9 for New Mexico residents with ID. (Adult admission is $12.50 for non-residents.)
If you want to do the math another way, if one New Mexico resident grown-up takes four not-yet-grown-ups, you all enjoy Zoo Boo for less than $2 per person! ABQ BioPark defines a child as aged 3-12 for its regular tickets. Make sure the small humans go in costume though! (As if you could stop them.)
Expect to spook it up at the Albuquerque Zoo Boo with:
- Games and Haunted Habitats
- Trick-or-treating with candy from local sponsors
- Backyard Boo for tiny tots
- A costume parade and judging for children aged 12 and under. There are three different contests at various times. Baby Boo & Cutest is at 11:30 am, then Best Boy Costume & Best Girl Costume at 1:30 pm, followed by Scariest & Funniest at 3:30 pm.
- A screaming contest with the first round starting at 12:30 pm. Boy, I should enter that. Especially if they have any of those creepy-crawlies on the loose at the zoo!
- A Jack-o-lanterns display from the BioPark’s staff pumpkin carving contest.
- Entertainment from KISS-FM.
Halloween is such a special occasion for kids and the Albuquerque Zoo Boo at the ABQ BioPark provides a fun alternative to trick-or-treating. Zoo Boo has been the zoo’s busiest day of the year in past years, and it gives the parents a price break! It’s great that the event is celebrating its quarter century.
A free Park and ride will be available from the Aquarium and Botanic Garden parking lot from 10 am – 5 pm.
New Mexico BioPark Society members get free admission (as they always do to all ABQ BioPark facilities).
Go scare yourself at Albuquerque Zoo Boo:
- When: Saturday, October 26, 2013
- Time: 11 am – 4 pm
- Where: ABQ BioPark Zoo
- Admission: 4 costumed children get free admission with a paying adult.
The ABQ BioPark Zoo, formerly the Rio Grande Zoo, is located at 903 10th St. SW.
Albuquerque Philharmonic Orchestra gives two free concerts this month, featuring Dvorak’s always-popular New World Symphony.
The two free Albuquerque Philharmonic Orchestra concerts are on October 25 and October 27, 2013. Both classical concerts feature the same stirring program entitled Expressions of American Optimism. (Boy, do we need some of that at the moment.)
The performance kicks off with Antonin Dvorak’s New World Symphony #9. That is followed by the contemporary composition The Dharma at Big Sur, by Pulitzer Prize–winning composer John Adams. Debra Terry joins the orchestra as soloist on electric, six-string violin. Very cool!
The conductor is David Felberg - he’s the assistant director of the UNM Symphony Orchestra, has also conducted the New Mexico Symphony, and he’s performed with just about every New Mexico orchestra worth mentioning.
The free Albuquerque Philharmonic Orchestra concerts take place:
- Friday October 25 at 7:30 pm at St. Therese Church, 3424 4th Street NW
- Sunday October 27 at 4 pm at Immanuel Presbyterian Church in Nob Hill, Carlisle & Silver SE. (Note, at time of writing the orchestra website shows the time as 2 pm. But I’m assured the concert has been pushed back to 4 pm, and the website will no doubt be updated soon.)
We plan to go to the Sunday one, so maybe I’ll see you there! Thank you very much to the Albuquerque Philharmonic Orchestra for giving us the chance to hear such wonderful classical music – not even on the cheap, but totally free. Although they do of course accept donations