Sunflower and Garlic Festivals, Salsa on the Plaza

August 24, 2012 by  
Filed under Events, Weekend & Day Trips

I’ve heard about some unusual and fun-sounding free and cheap events this weekend, both in town or if you’re in the mood to hit the road for a day out.  Want to enjoy the glories of sunflowers or garlic as we head into the harvest season? Or join in the salsa dancing party to open the Albuquerque Latin Dance Festival…

Free Salsa on the Old Town Plaza Party tonight Friday August 24, 5:30 to 10 pm. The salsa party (salsa dancing not the eating kind!) kicks off the Albuquerque Latin Dance Festival with music by Cafe Mocha and dance performances on four dance floors around the gazebo. If you are really hot to trot, continue to the after-party for a $10 cover at Hotel Albuquerque, starting at 10:30 in the Franciscan Ballroom with DJ Chris Romero.

Stinking Rose Garlic Fest at Idalia Road Marketplace in Rio Rancho on August 25 and 26 with garlic for sale, free face painting for kids, and live music, as well as prize drawings. Admission is free. Saturday August 25 looks the most interesting day to me, with three speakers on Saturday morning from 10 am – 11:30 am talking about growing garlic, health benefits of garlic, and cooking utensils for garlic. The You Stink Garlic Eating Competition is at 11:30 am. Sign up by 10:30 am if you want to take part and see if you can eat the most cloves of raw garlic. (Guess this one won’t be popular with our vampire readers.) The Idalia Road Marketplace runs on Saturday from 9 am to 2 pm and on Sunday from 10 am to 2 pm at Idalia Road, a half mile north of Northern Boulevard, Rio Rancho.

Peña Blanca Sunflower Festival debuts this weekend, if you love sunflower seeds or oil, or just looking at gorgeous sunflowers! Thanks to reader Jennifer for telling us about the Sunflower Festival on August 25-26, with admission at $1 for adults, and free for kids under 44 inches high. (Smaller than some of the sunflowers, maybe?) This is the first Peña Blanca Sunflower Festival and the best I can find out is that there will be music, hay rides, exhibits, arts and crafts vendors including Native American jewelers, and vendors with sunflower products, as well as cooking and flower-arranging demonstrations by New Mexico State University home economists. Hours are 8 am to 5 pm, and Peña Blanca is about 45 minutes from the Big-I, going north on I-25 to exit 259 for Santo Domingo Pueblo, then it’s about 8 miles off I-25 on NM 22.

The Mountainair Sunflower Festival is free on Saturday, August 25, from 10 am to 4 pm, in Mountainair, about 78 miles southeast of Albuquerque. The event combines an arts and craft show, entertainment, food vendors, and kids’ activities, plus the chance to enjoy sunflowers at and around the festival. A sunflower hat competition will be judged at 12:45 pm with a parade of hats. Get directions to Mountainair from Albuquerque.




One Response to “Sunflower and Garlic Festivals, Salsa on the Plaza”
  1. It was a great day at our Garlic Festival….there is more to see and eat tomorrow. Thanks for the great write up!!! Join us sometime.