View From the Plaza

May is the Month to Get Outdoors!

Great outdoors: Did you know that Santa Fe has a professional baseball team? The Fuego season starts this month at Fort Marcy Park. The Santa Fe Botanical Garden hosts its annual garden tours preceded by optional picnic lunch, while more private “pequeno” tours are offered monthly by the Santa Fe Garden Club. Every day except Sundays all summer, the New Mexico History Museum/Palace of the Governors leads downtown walking tours, starting from the palace courtyard just south of the History Museum entrance, at 10:15 am. Free and low-cost events this month at Cerrillos Hills State Park, just south of Santa Fe on the Turquoise Trail, include tours of geology and birdwatching, a wildflower hike, plus a presentation on bats. If you prefer to do your touring on two wheels, join one of New Mexico’s most picturesque cycling events (with 25 and 50-mile options) on the Santa Fe Century, passing through historic locations from the Turquoise Trail to Galisteo.

Food and farming: Learn all about making and tasting craft beers with Chef David Sundberg of Blue Corn Brewery—then taste samples paired with his series of small plates, at the Santa Fe Culinary Academy. Check out the cooking classes and chef’s vineyard dinners held during summer at Santa Fe’s Estrella del Norte vineyard. The film this month at the Farmers Market’s Wednesday Night Movie Series is Edible City, a look at the urban farming movement.

At the museums: The Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian opens the Durango Collection, an exhibit of Southwest textile masterpieces on loan from Colorado’s Center of Southwest Studies. Fiber fanatics will also want to attend the Santa Fe Fiber Arts Festival, with demonstrations on everything from dyeing with cochineal to weaving on traditional looms. Come relive Civil War battles fought in New Mexico with re-enacted battles and demonstrations of camp life at El Rancho de las Golondrinas living history museum. Don’t forget the art workshops for adults and families (many free) held regularly at the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum.

Classical music: The Santa Fe Symphony wraps up its season with the Carmina Burana by Carl Orff, featuring soloists Mary Wilson, Sam Shepperson, and Jeremy Kelly, plus the Santa Fe Men’s Camerata. The chamber music group Serenata of Santa Fe perform their last concert of the season at St. John’s College. The Sangre de Cristo Chorale performs two concerts this month, and the New Mexico Performing Arts Society premieres the newly orchestrated Requiem by New Mexico-based composer John Donald Robb. Free classical concerts are offered each season by the all-volunteer Santa Fe Community Orchestra, including a preview show this month of Stravinsky’s Rite of Spring.

Contemporary music: World-renowned jazz pianist and composer Darius Brubeck (son of Dave) performs with Santa Fe jazz band Straight Up and vocalist Maura Dhu Studi. Lyle Lovett and Robert Earl Keen play at the stunning Santa Fe Opera house for one night only. And the boundary-pushing Primus presents a unique 3D-enhanced performance (with glasses) in two full sets at the Santa Fe Convention Center.

Arts: Experience Canyon Road at its finest during Passport to the Arts, a weekend festival of events and exhibitions. Collectors will want to head early to Native Treasures: Indian Arts Festival exhibit and sale featuring museum-quality pieces, starting with a pre-sale cocktail party where you can meet the artists. More traditional craft fairs take place in Cathedral Park and every weekend at the artists’ market at The Railyard. Just up the highway, the town of Eldorado is having its annual studio tour. And for something offbeat, Linda Mary Montano will perform her endurance singing piece at the entrance of SITE Santa Fe as part of her ongoing exhibition.

Performance: There’s still time to catch Fusion Theatre’s production of Charlotte Jones’ Humble Boy, a poignant retelling of the Hamlet story. The critically acclaimed satire This House by James Graham, about British politics, is this month’s offering from the National Theatre of London Live in HD. Legendary American composer Leonard Bernstein comes to life in Maestro: The Art of Leonard Bernstein, performed by actor-musician Hershey Felder. Santa Fe’s own Wise Fool Circus opens its new show See Saw, set in a landscape of kinetic sculptures, in free shows at The Railyard. For the finale of its avant-garde performance series Eventua, the Center for Contemporary Arts features the artist collective CHERYL from Brooklyn, inviting audiences to “revel in the joyous power of dance-induced psychosis/euphoria.”

Speakers: Uruguayan writer and activist Eduardo Galeano speaks with Peruvian novelist Marie Arana as part of the Lannan Foundation’s cultural freedom series. The New Mexico History Museum presents a lively talk on cowboy clothing from designer Cathy Smith as part of its show Cowboys Real and Imagined. Author Isabelle Sandoval speaks on Crypto-Jewish women, the subject of her historical novel. Fresco artist Frederico Vigil, known for his decade-long painting of the Torreon at the National Hispanic Cultural Center in Albuquerque, will speak on the ancient technique of buon fresco.  At the Santa Fe Institute, free public lectures this month include “The Minds of Children,” from psychologist and author Alison Gopnik, and “Zoobiquity: What Dolphin Diabetes Can Teach Us About Human Health,” from UCLA cardiologist Barbara Natterson-Horowitz.

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