Albuquerque Summerfest offers great free family entertainment – and the Westside Summerfest is the last one for the 2014 season. They’re going out with a great line-up…
Albuquerque Westside Summerfest on Saturday August 23, 2014, from 5 pm to 10:30 pm should be quite the street party. The event takes place on Ellison Drive NW between Cottonwood Drive and Alameda and it includes a free concert by Morris Day and the Time. This band must be cool, as it appeared in Prince’s movie Purple Rain and you can’t get much cooler than Prince.
As well as the free live music and dancing, expect local food vendors and The Stumbling Steer Corral beer garden with Albuquerque and New Mexico microbreweries. You can also expect an arts and crafts market from local artisans, and activities for kids including giant inflatables, a rock-climbing wall, face painting, jumps, and balloon animals.
The Westside Summerfest entertainment program on Saturday August 23 is:
- 5 pm: Good Green
- 6:20 pm: The Chris Kill Trio
- 7:45 pm: The JDS – formerly known as The James Douglas Show, the nationally touring band based in Albuquerque
- 9:15 pm: Morris Day & The Time
And did we mention the concerts are all FREE? Take your own folding chairs if you like and make sure your pooch is on a leash if you take him or her along for the evening.
Parking is available at Cibola High School, 1510 Ellison Rd NW. If you want to cycle there, take advantage of the free bike valet provided by Esperanza Bike Shop on the dirt median.
Enjoy the last Summerfest of the season!
Happy birthday to the National Park Service, and happy free admission to us all…
The National Park Service celebrates its 98th anniversary on August 25, 2014 and we can all share the celebration. On that birthday date, admission is free to National Parks that usually charge an entry fee.
On the fee-free day, Monday August 25, you can enter every one of the country’s 400+ national parks for free – and we’ve got plenty to choose from in New Mexico!
It’s a great opportunity to explore without paying a cent. It’s also a good excuse to plan a day trip to visit a park you don’t know yet, or return to an old favorite, with options from the Grand Canyon to Yosemite.
The New Mexico National Parks with free admission on August 25 include:
- 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 the links above for current conditions at the park in case they have any special weather or other park alerts or info you need to know. Some parks may also have free events. For example,White Sands National Monument offers daily patio talks with a park ranger. White Sands also hosts a daily sunset stroll – a one-hour walk through the sand dunes, guided by a ranger.
The ABQ Home Expo returns for 2014 on the weekend of August 23 and 24, and you can get $2 off admission by buying tickets online in advance.
I’m pretty sure the ABQ Home Expo used to be called the ABQ Home and Lifestyle Expo way back in the dark ages. But whatever they choose to call it, we like to see discounted admission! So here’s the deal.
Get $2 off ABQ Home Expo adult admission at Expo New Mexico if you buy tickets online. That makes it $6 per ticket instead of $8 on the door. There’s no online discount for seniors’ and kids’ tickets for this show, but they cost less in the first place. Admission is $6 for seniors and kids. Children aged 11 and under go free.
The August 2014 ABQ Home Expo runs on:
- Saturday August 23 from 10 am to 5 pm
- Sunday August 24 from 10 am to 4 pm.
I love these events because we get to see everything that’s new in home decor and improvements, kitchens, design trends, gadgets, products, and more. For the very first time, the Expo will feature a Local Artisan’s Market.
The ABQ Home Expo is held in the Manuel Lujan Buildings at EXPO New Mexico, home of the New Mexico State Fairgrounds. If you drive there, the parking fee is $5.
El Rancho de las Golondrinas asks how well we’d survive life in Colonial and Territorial New Mexico. Sometimes I wonder how good I am at surviving it right now in the 21st century, but certainly if you took away my fridge and I had to venture out hunter-gathering, I’d go hungry.
Hence the Survival: New Mexico weekend at El Rancho de las Golondrinas, just south of Santa Fe, caught my eye. The event is this Saturday and Sunday, August 16 and 17, 2014, with activities for adults and kids on traditional skills, and some handy modern day outdoor survival skills too.
If you’re in the mood for a day trip, admission for the Survival New Mexico event is $8 for adults, $6 for teens aged 13-18, and free for kids aged 12 and under. Seniors aged 62+ pay $6.
Activities and talks include:
- An archery and atlatl workshop to learn how to shoot
- Learn how to make fire when you don’t have any matches to hand
- Make mini adobe bricks
- The art of fiber arts – before wool there was yucca
- Black powder weaponry demonstration
- Civil War medicine – just a talk, not practicing it on each other
- Wilderness first aid by the American Red Cross
- How to make a wilderness shelter
- Learn how to cook ginger bread in a Dutch oven, weave a survival bracelet, attend the leather craft workshop, or kids can make a felt snake
- Backyard composting, harvesting honey, and food preservation
Plus flintknappers, mountain man survival stories, horno bread, and more. Some activities are only on one day, and you can see the full schedule at the El Rancho de las Golondrinas events page.
Survival: New Mexico weekend:
- When: August 16-17, 2014
- Time: 10 am – 4 pm
- Where: El Rancho de las Golondrinas
- Admission: $8 adults, or $6 for seniors (62+) and youth aged 13-18. Free for kids aged 12 and under
El Rancho de las Golondrinas directions to the living history museum on 200 pastoral acres just south of Santa Fe are pretty straightforward. It’s easy to find, off 1-25 exit 276. Take a left onto state road 599 and keep left. It’s well-signed and just a few minutes from that exit.
The tomatoes have been delicious already this season, in my avid tomato-fiend opinion. But now they’re arriving more abundantly in the August harvest, we’re devouring fresh tomatoes like crazy here at Cheap Central. I read that if you eat avocados at the same time, you absorb up to seven times as much of the antioxidant lycopene from the tomatoes. New Mexico already knew this. This is why we all eat salsa and guacamole, isn’t it?
Health benefits aside, at the peak of summer nothing tastes better than a homegrown tomato and I only wish I could grow them myself. We aren’t growing tomatoes this year as we have been moving home so we haven’t been able to keep up with a garden. But in any case we don’t have green thumbs for tomatoes. We only yielded a handful of cherry tomatoes last year. They ripen one cherry tomato at a time, which we solemnly cut in half to share. They taste delicious but watching Mr Cheap eat half a cherry tomato is like giving a peanut to Daizy the elephant.
Still, if you’re as fond of tomatoes as we are, you won’t want to miss this very juicy annual event. It’s cheap too!
The 2014 Albuquerque Tomato Fiesta takes place Sunday, August 17 from 11 am – 3 pm, at the Albuquerque Garden Center.
Presented by the Albuquerque Area Extension Master Gardeners, the Albuquerque Tomato Fiesta offers lots of activities for a $5 admission fee, and kids aged under 12 are FREE! (Or rather their admission is, I don’t suppose they’re growing kids beside the tomato plants to give away.)
Albuquerque Tomato Fiesta includes:
- Free gardening seminars at 11:30 am (Tomatoes 101) and 12:30 pm (Waffle Gardens with Sean Ludden)and at 1:45 pm Master Composters.
- Cooking demonstrations
- Heirloom tomato tasting
- Free plant clinic by the Master Gardeners
- Kids’ activities
- Music by the Alpha Blue Trio
- Fresh produce for sale
The Albuquerque Tomato Fiesta is sponsored by Jericho Nursery, Osuna Nursery and Montano Acura.
- When: Sunday August 17, 2014
- Time: 11 am – 3 pm
- Where: Albuquerque Garden Center
- Price: $5 adults, free for kids aged under 12
Albuquerque Garden Center is located at 10120 Lomas Boulevard NE, at Eubank.
Albuquerque Downtown Summerfest offers great family entertainment this Saturday August 9, 2014, and all the fun is free!
Albuquerque Downtown Summerfest comes to Central Ave from 2nd St to 7th St this Saturday August 9 from 5 pm – 10:30 pm. We can look forward to live music concerts including the headline act Sheila E. An Emmy nominated solo artist, Sheila G is well known for her many musical talents as a percussionist and drummer. This multi-talented artist also writes, produces and has her own music label! Since the young age of 17, she has recorded and toured with famous musical artists such as Natalie Cole, Gloria Estefan, and Stevie Wonder.
As well as the free live music and dancing, expect food vendors, an arts and crafts market, and free kids’ activities. You can also hang out and chill out in the Microbrew Garden with Broken Bottle Brewery, Bosque Brewing, La Cumbre, Marble Brewery, Abbey Brewing Company, Il Vicino and Santa Fe Brewing Company.
The Summerfest program for the Main Stage on Saturday August 9 is:
- 5 pm: Paul Pino and the Tone Daddies
- 6:20 pm: Roberto Griego
- 7:45 pm: Migeulito
- 9 pm: Sheila E
The following schedule is for the Millennial Stage which will feature alternative rock music:
- 5 pm: Great States
- 6:45 pm: The Lymbs
- 7:45 pm: Josh Burg
- 9 pm: Repel the Robot
And did we mention the concerts are all FREE?
Transportation and parking are always an issue with downtown events, so here are some suggestions:
- Parking is available for a flat fee of $6 per vehicle at both the Civic Plaza and Convention Center lots.
- Use the free bike valet at the event if you want to go on two wheels.
- Take ABQ Ride bus and exit at the stop at 2nd Street and Marquette, one block from Civic Plaza.
Albuquerque Downtown Summerfest takes place on Central Ave from 2nd St to 7th in downtown Albuquerque.
September still feels like a long way away, but you’ll save big if you plan ahead and buy your Globalquerque tickets in advance of the show.
Discounted advance tickets are already on sale for ¡Globalquerque! – Albuquerque’s annual celebration of world music and culture. The Globalquerque 2014 event takes place on September 19-20 at the National Hispanic Cultural Center, with performers including the fantastic Guatemala’s Gaby Moreno. Other acts in the line-up include Cuba’s Afro-Cuban All Stars, Calypso Rose with Kobo Town from Trinidad & Tobago, China’s Liu Fang, and America’s own Los Texmaniacs.
You’ll save yourself money if you plan ahead and buy advance Globalquerque tickets rather than waiting to buy on the door. For example, an advance adult 2-day pass costs $59 — a savings of $10 off the day of show price! An adult one day tickets saves $5 in advance, and advance children’s tickets save $2 for one day and $5 for the 2-day pass.
You can buy the advance Globalquerque tickets online, but expect to pay a service charge of $3.50 per ticket. The much cheaper option is to buy tickets at the National Hispanic Cultural Center box office (1701 4th Street SW) with no service charge. Or call the NHCC Box Office on (505) 724-4771 and you’ll also avoid paying ticketing fees.
If you can’t afford to buy Globalquerque tickets at all, or just plain don’t want to pay up for the festival, there will be a free Global Fiesta day on September 20 with family-friendly entertainment and activities. It’s not really the same as seeing all those fabulous concerts, but it’s still a great day of music and dance.
I’ll keep you posted on the free Global Fiesta day nearer the time, so if you’re not a subscriber remember to Subscribe FREE to Albuquerque on the Cheap by RSS or email. You’ll receive updates in a handy email digest, listing all the new deal posts from the past 24 hours. No new deals that day… no email.
If you haven’t been to one of this summer’s Stories in the Night Sky and Albuquerque Concert, you still have a chance to attend the final event on Wednesday August 6.
The Albuquerque Concert Band has been entertaining Albuquerque for more than 40 years, and the Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum does a pretty good job of entertaining us all too Put the two together and you’ve got a recipe for some fun evenings with the concert band PLUS Stories in the Night Sky. And it’s all free!
The events run on selected Wednesdays in summer 2014, and the remaining one is August 6.
The Albuquerque Balloon Museum hosts Stories in the Night Sky at 6 pm, followed by an Albuquerque Concert Band concert. Gates open at 5:30 pm.
Admission is free, and the August 6 Stories in the Sky segment features musicians, storytellers, and artists who will demonstrate the challenging art of improvisation.
The Stories in the Night Sky segment will run from 6 – 7 pm. The Albuquerque Concert Band concerts will run from 7 – 8 pm.
Come and enjoy the talents of Balloon Museum Jazz Music Ensemble with band leader, Brian Bennett & storyteller, Laurie Magovern.
You’re also welcome to take a picnic to enjoy on the lawn. (Welcome? You couldn’t stop me!) If you don’t want to prepare a picnic, food providers will be on site to serve up something yummy. Of course, you can also go just for the concert or just for the stories. It’s all free so what the heck?
The band usually plays a variety of music from big band classics to Scottish dances and rousing symphonic marches, and no doubt people will be having a dance, so don’t be shy to strut your stuff.
Anderson-Abruzzo Albuquerque International Balloon Museum is located at 9201 Balloon Museum NE.
The Starbucks Treat Receipt promo is running again, and it’s one for serious coffee hounds…
In the Starbucks Treat Receipt promo, customers who get their fix with a Starbucks purchase in the morning up until 1:59 p.m (on any day) can mosey on back the same day after 2 pm with their receipt to get a Grande sized cold drink for $2, plus applicable tax.
The offer runs until August 17, 2014, and the $2 deal is on the 16 fluid ounce size of Starbucks cold beverages including iced coffee, Fizzio Handcrafted Sodas, Starbucks Refreshers, and Frappuccinos, at participating locations. No coupon is required, just remember to return with your Starbucks receipt from that morning.
If you want any more temptation, drinks in the Treat Receipt deal include the new Teavana Shaken Iced Teas, which sounds like just the right pick-me-up for summer. It’s rather hot slaving over my laptop, and I could do with one of those right now, or maybe an iced latte or just about anything to help me chill out. I do have a cold cup of chai tea sitting next to me, made with a teabag, but I assure you that’s not the same thing at all.
NOTE: Not all locations may be participating in the Starbucks Treat Receipt offer – call ahead if you want to be sure.
This year’s New Mexico Tax Holiday starts on Friday, August 1, and ends at midnight on Sunday, August 3, 2014. During this gross receipts tax holiday, you will not be charged sales tax on a wide variety of items, which makes back-to-school shopping a little more affordable!
As with any legislation, the rules are somewhat complex. Basically, the following items are exempt from the state’s gross receipts tax during the New Mexico tax holiday:
- Clothing or shoes priced less than $100 per unit/per pair
- Desktop, laptop, or notebook computers, including tablets, priced less than $1,000
- Other computer hardware priced under $500 (such as a printer, mouse, keyboard, monitor, microphone, speakers, ink cartridges etc.)
- School supplies priced under $30 per unit
- School backpacks priced less than $100 per unit
- Handheld calculators under $200 per unit
Note that PDAs, iPods and all MP3 players, games including computer games, and musical instruments are specifically excluded. (That is, these items are taxable.) Also swimwear is excluded and any specialist footwear that someone wouldn’t wear in the street, such as ski boots.
There are many sub-categories in the eligible items, so to see what’s taxable and nontaxable, check out these two PDF files:
- New Mexico Tax Holiday general overview
- New Mexico Gross Receipts Tax Holiday detailed listings of all items
In Albuquerque, where the gross receipts tax rate is 7%, that means you can save $70 on the purchase of a $1,000 laptop computer. Another example might be a family with four kids, each requiring $250 worth of clothing, shoes, and school supplies. They also would save $70 by not paying sales tax. That’s a big shopping saving, just by buying on the right weekend.
Hence I’m giving you the heads-up: If you’re planning a remote camping trip to the mountains, DON’T do it on the weekend of August 1 to 3, 2014!
Retailers across the city will be participating in the New Mexico Tax Holiday, but if you have any doubts about what is or is not included in the 2014 Tax Holiday, ask in stores before you begin shopping.