Spring Into Summer in Santa Fe

May is on its way out and June is bustin’ out all over! Don’t waste precious summer vacation time sitting around watching reruns. As soon as school’s out or your R&R slot hits the jackpot, you deserve the festivities only Santa Fe, New Mexico can provide!

Treasure Your Time in Santa Fe

If you’ve got the early out-of-school luck, you “May” want to make tracks for Santa Fe this very weekend to catch the Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival on May 23–24. Actually, forget may and make that should because this is first dibs for capturing the best in handcrafted Native American jewelry, pottery, rugs and artifacts before summer shoppers get their chance. More than 200 Native artists will bring a treasure chest of objet d’arts guaranteed to amaze––and you may just have to scope out your favorite artisans for a return visit for the August Southwestern Association for Indian Arts (known locally as SWAIA) Indian Market!

Jemez Pueblo Potter Kathleen Wall puts the happy into her craftsmanship. (Photo Credit: Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival)

Jemez Pueblo Potter Kathleen Wall puts the happy into her craftsmanship. (Photo Credit: Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival)

Catch the Current Running Through Santa Fe in June

Santa Fe is far from ocean waves, but there’s a distinct current of excitement about contemporary art that flows annually in June. That’s when the two-week June 12-28 Currents Contemporary New Media Festival takes over El Museo Cultural. Since 2002, this feast for the eyes has wowed art-lovers with an extravaganza of cutting-edge curiosities and craftsmanship. Video and new media installations, performance art, live music, artist presentations, panels and workshops, outdoor events and digital dome programs at IAIA (IAIA is the nickname for the Institute of American Indian Arts) all captivate the creative eye and mind––and best of all, Currents events are free!

Currents New Media Festival is a cataclysm of color and form in cutting-edge art.

Currents New Media Festival is a cataclysm of color and form in cutting-edge art.

Santa Fe is a FantaSe!

I did mention that June was bustin’ out, didn’t I? I mean outside at FantaSe Fest, a bravura block party hosted by Creative Santa Fe, on the grassy lawn of DeVargas Park. The sounds of music onstage and whirring wheels at the skateboard park cast their spell over Santa Fe from 6:00 p.m. until midnight, Saturday June 20. Now in its third year, FantaSe is a do-it-yourself fantasy of color and creativity. Jared Garcia, lead vocalist of Thieves & Gypsys, is the music impresario and that promises a quirky blend of Santa Fe bands. Axle Contemporary Art mobile gallery will pull up alongside the food trucks and rumor has it that the festival is looking to host a classic low-rider car show, too.

FantaSe Fest paints Santa Fe’s night skies with a colorful kaleidoscope of light!

FantaSe Fest paints Santa Fe’s night skies with a colorful kaleidoscope of light!

Speaking of Santa Fe outdoor activity, Rodeo de Santa Fe is also kickin’ off their 2015 season on Saturday June 20. Find your shady spot on the downtown route before 11:00 a.m., when the Rodeo Parade begins. You’ll probably see the Rodeo Bull float parked at FantaSe Fest but you have to wait until June 24–27 to see the action at the Rodeo grounds. Your ticket ensures entry to join a foot-stompin’ crowd of enthusiasts cheering for barrel-racers and remarkable roping, but I for one am all in for the first-ever kids’ mutton-bustin’!

The Rodeo Bull gets a lift for the annual Rodeo de Santa Fe Parade. (Photo Credit: Joy Russell, Courtesy of Rodeo de Santa Fe)

The Rodeo Bull gets a lift for the annual Rodeo de Santa Fe Parade. (Photo Credit: Joy Russell, Courtesy of Rodeo de Santa Fe)

As long as we’re on the subject of outdoor adventures, I’ll pitch for one of my very favorite excursions, a trip to El Rancho de las Golondrinas. This outdoor history museum has earned my undying loyalty for comprehensive programs detailing New Mexico life past to present. Two weekends offer family-friendly educational experiences that turn learning into hands-on entertainment.

Golondrinas starts June with a Spring Festival and Fiber Arts Fair on the 6th and 7th and makes summer official at the June 20–21 Herb and Lavender Festival. Gotta hand it to the professionals wielding sheep-shearing tools with amazing speed and accuracy!

You can make friends with some frisky four-legs at El Rancho de las Golondrinas Spring Festival. (Photo Credit: El Rancho de las Golondrinas)

You can make friends with some frisky four-legs at El Rancho de las Golondrinas Spring Festival. (Photo Credit: El Rancho de las Golondrinas)

Getting out and about showcases different tools at the annual Santa Fe Studio Tour. The tour opens with an artists’ reception at the Santa Fe University of Art and Design on Friday, June 19 at 5:30 p.m. Two weekends worth of artistry also provide a peek at the workspaces in which the multimedia magic takes place––June 20–­21 and June 27–28. The tour adds up to a bevy of beauties worth seeing, with 44 studios, 5 days and countless paintings, pottery, jewelry, photographs and sculpture to choose from.

 

Start your Santa Fe Studio Tour at the beginning where the results of Carolyn Lobeck’s pottery-making skills will be on display in Studio #1. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Studio Tour)

Start your Santa Fe Studio Tour at the beginning where the results of Carolyn Lobeck’s pottery-making skills will be on display in Studio #1. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Studio Tour)

We’re proud of everything Santa Fe has to share with those who visit and we’re also proud to be a diverse and welcoming community. End the month of June by celebrating Santa Fe Pride with us on Saturday, June 27. Janice Robinson will headline Pride on the Plaza’s entertainment for Pride 2015, and all the colors of the rainbow will decorate the heart of the City Different.

Santa Fe Pride is a multi-hued, multicultural, multi-generational haven for confident self-expression.

Santa Fe Pride is a multi-hued, multicultural, multi-generational haven for confident self-expression.

June is Your Santa Fe Answer to Starting Summer

Have I given you enough temptations for you to make that Santa Fe visit now instead of later? If your answer is yes, start planning because the fun and festivities are already planned for you––and all you have to do is get here!

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Painting the Plate Red in Santa Fe

Guess what? Summer is literally one month away! The Santa Fe Farmer’s Market is blossoming with fresh produce, baked goods, and authentic flavors. There is, however, one missing crop that won’t appear until later in the year and it’s one that locals really anticipate––green chile! Having to wait for our signature food makes me see red––not because I’m getting angry. I simply mean that my daily chile fix is being administered via savory red chile.

New Mexico Chile is a Classic

Chile has been a cornerstone of New Mexico cuisine for hundreds of years. Whether or not you’ve made a Santa Fe visit (and if you haven’t, what are you waiting for?), you’ve no doubt seen a colorful picture of red chile ristras hanging along a portal. Before the days of canning jars and refrigerators, the season for eating fresh green chile was lamentably short. Green chile ripens rapidly into red, so the homey solution for keeping chile flavors on the table resulted in handsome scarlet strings adorning New Mexico haciendas. Once the ristras are strung and hung, all Mama has to do is collect a handful for cooking up a spicy family meal––breakfast, lunch or dinner.

ristras

A long line of rich red chile ristras is a sight that warms a New Mexican’s heart! (Photo Credit: Nicole Curtis Ammernan)

Red Chile is the Breakfast of Champions

Breakfast, you ask? You bet! No matter how eggs are prepared, they brighten up with a generous smothering of red chile sauce. While Tia Sophia’s (celebrating its 40th anniversary) serves a wicked good breakfast burrito daily, if you want your fair share of homemade Sunday chorizo inside it, I suggest an early arrival. As for huevos rancheros, bright yellow yolk melds with red chile to flow over a mound of black beans at Café Pasqual for a truly sublime morning experience. Brave adventurers can break their fast on the southside of town by testing their mettle at the Horseman’s Haven, renowned as Santa Fe’s hottest chile––you’ve been warned!

Café Pasqual is a delicious rainbow of colors overhead and on the plate. (Photo Credit: Café Pasqual)

Café Pasqual is a delicious rainbow of colors overhead and on the plate. (Photo Credit: Café Pasqual)

Midday Magic on the Plate is “Red-y” and Waiting

Lunchtime is a colorful munch-time for me. If I’m downtown, I make a beeline for The Shed or if I’m roaming, its sister restaurant La Choza. Either way, I know that I’ll feel that rosy glow of red chile as I clean my plate. Texas-style chili (that’s how they spell it) will be a distant memory once you’ve tried The Shed’s chile con carne, packed with potent red chile, ground beef and beans and served with their signature garlic bread (okay, you can still order a tortilla). La Choza (Spanish translation: hut or shack) serves a classic Frito Pie­­––that’s all you need to know!

La Choza is a locals’ favorite snack shack.

La Choza is a locals’ favorite snack shack.

Santa Fe Paints the Town Red at Suppertime

After watching the setting sun saturate the sky with carmine clouds, it’s easy to build up an appetite. End your day by sating your hunger at Atrisco with a ruby-hued platter of carne adovada (slow-cooked chunks of pork marinated in red chile) that packs a powerful punch. Atrisco has a sister restauraunt, too, and her name is Tomasita. Long the hub of Santa Fe Railyard dining, Tomasita’s does red chile proud with an ample stuffed sopaipill­­a––meat, beans or vegetarian––draped in melted cheese and guaranteed to please.

redchile

Every red-blooded foodie should add a stuffed sopaipilla to the repertoire!

Get Red Chile Credentials in Santa Fe

While every chef has a secret recipe, no one can really agree on whether dried whole pods or dried ground chile makes the better sauce. What everyone can agree on, however, is that mastering the art of red chile is a skill worth having. And more to the point, it’s best to acquire this particular skillset with an education from the experts. Aspiring chile chefs can learn how to handle the hot stuff––safely––with a Red Chile Workshop at the Santa Fe School of Cooking.

 

Get ready for red with a chile workshop at the Santa Fe School of Cooking. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe School of Cooking)

Get ready for red with a chile workshop at the Santa Fe School of Cooking. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe School of Cooking)

Hot Stuff can be a Sweet Treat

I’d be remiss if I didn’t close on a sweet note since red chile plays a delectable role on the Santa Fe Chocolate Trail. Kakawa Chocolate House’s Mesoamerican sipping chocolates are laced with chile as is the tempting selection of dark chocolates crafted with fiery flare. C. G. Higgins chocolates also receive props for piquancy and their Red Chile Caramel Corn is the perfect snack to bring home for movie night. Red chile chocolate pâté from The ChocolateSmith is a souvenir that never disappoints, and speaking of souvenirs, Señor Murphy’s red chile jelly does triple duty as a marinade, a glaze or in an appetizer.

Yes, you’re seeing right–––those ARE chocolate covered ancho chiles on that plate! (Photo Credit: Kakawa Chocolate House)

Yes, you’re seeing right–––those ARE chocolate covered ancho chiles on that plate! (Photo Credit: Kakawa Chocolate House)

Put the Roses in Your Cheeks with a Red Chile Adventure

Red chile doesn’t just taste good–––it makes you feel good! For centuries, chile has been a feel-better-fast cure-all. The capsaicin that gives red chile its heat acts as an anti-inflammatory and the bright color signals the presence of immunity-boosting vitamins A and C. Happy and healthy is all the excuse a girl needs for dosing herself with New Mexico’s finest flaming flavors until the green chile harvest is in. That’s what I’m doing during Santa Fe’s Summer of Color––and crimson copycats are welcome!

 

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Santa Fe Summer Is Totally Technicolor

Close your eyes. Take a deep breath. Think about Santa Fe as I ask this question: What color do you see? Perhaps it’s the turquoise in a hand-crafted bracelet or the green of piñon and juniper trees or red and orange painting the sky at day’s end. Now open your eyes. Think Santa Fe again and consider this: Whatever color your mind’s eye pictures is already here. Our Summer of Color paints an unforgettable picture with color-themed exhibitions at Museum Hill’s renowned cultural institutions.

springdoor

Open your mind to the colors of Santa Fe.

A Tour Through Turquoise is a Tempting Invitation

The Museum of Indian Arts and Culture has a gem squarely set in the exhibit “Turquoise, Water and Sky,” a reflective progression through this legendary stone’s backstory. Associated with energy, creativity and balance, turquoise was mined all over the Southwest and the variety of hues and uses are well worth exploring. Its importance to ancient and modern Native American life is displayed via intricate jewels and objects embellished with every shade of this culturally significant stone. Adding a tour of the museum’s gallery of humorous and politically astute work by painter David Bradley (in which turquoise also appears) makes for intriguing past-to-present discovery.

A ketoh, a bow guard worn to protect the archer from the bowstring, also serves as a beautiful bejeweled ornament. (Photo Credit: Kitty Leaken, Courtesy of the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture/Laboratory of Anthropology)

A ketoh, a bow guard worn to protect the archer from the bowstring, also serves as a beautiful bejeweled ornament. (Photo Credit: Kitty Leaken, Courtesy of the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture/Laboratory of Anthropology)

The Blues Can Make You Happy

In scoring turquoise’s relative, the color indigo, The Museum of Spanish Colonial Arts aims for artistic and historic revelation. Opening May 8th, “Blue on Blue: Indigo and Cobalt in New Spain” details the use and significance of blue dye and pigments in New Mexico’s colonial era and their continued popularity in today’s traditional arts. Blue is associated with peace and stability––rest assured that when you return for July’s annual Spanish Market, you’ll see the same peaceful, evocative blues embroidering delicate colcha textiles or coloring lovingly carved santos.

Santa Fe’s artistic legacy of blues will make you pray to return again and again.

Santa Fe’s artistic legacy of blues will make you pray to return again and again.

Shining Silver Speaks of Skill

No museum could be more deserving of silver than the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian. A June 6–7 gala welcomes the Wheelwright’s new Center for the Study of Southwestern Jewelry and I can’t think of a better home for a permanent gallery devoted to these traditions. Founded by Mary Cabot Wheelwright and Navajo shaman Hastiin Klah, the museum was designed by artist/architect William Penhallow Henderson in the shape of a hogan, the traditional Navajo dwelling. Silver is said to reflect back energy given out, and the hushed atmosphere of the Wheelwright imparts nothing but good energy.

 

Get Red-y to Be Amazed

Compliments of attention to the color wheel, folk art fans receive the gift of complementary colors when the Museum of International Folk Art embraces red and the International Folk Art Market takes on green. “The Red That Colored the World,” opening May 17th in the Hispanic Heritage Wing of the Folk Art Museum highlights American Cochineal, a tiny insect that produced the prized reds in paintings, sculpture, furniture and textiles of the mid-16th through mid-19th centuries, prior to synthetic pigments. If you’ve ever seen zig-zagging scarlet in a finely-woven serape or deep reds adorning the altarpiece of a mission church, you’ll recognize the passion, boldness and determination that red represents.

Visiting the Museum of International Folk Art leads to the heart of folk art.

Visiting the Museum of International Folk Art leads to the heart of folk art.

Global Artistry is Ever-Green

The ever-increasing popularity of the Folk Art Market, celebrating its twelfth year from July 10-12, is an exemplar of green’s meanings: growth, freshness and optimism. The garden-worthy panoply of greens on display from around the globe grows annually, with fresh indigenous artworks from a multitude of global cultures. The artisans, some of whose cottage industries help support whole villages, bring with them the optimism that their wares will find appreciative owners and the proceeds returning home will continue to move the culture forward.

The whole world shows up in Santa Fe at July’s International Folk Art Market! (Photo Credit: Judith Haden, Courtesy of the International Folk Art Alliance)

The whole world shows up in Santa Fe at July’s International Folk Art Market! (Photo Credit: Judith Haden, Courtesy of the International Folk Art Alliance)

“Orange” You Glad You Thought Santa Fe?

Across from the museums, the Santa Fe Botanical Garden celebrates orange, red’s cousin on the color spectrum. Expect to see blazing blossoms create a scenic panorama as “Monarch––Orange Takes Flight,” an orange container garden decorates the garden landscape with themed plantings on which visitors are invited to vote. Orange is known for enthusiasm, creativity and stimulation (ever wondered why restaurants use the color for décor?), so add in five Thursday after-hours sunset walks with picnic opportunities­­­­––May 21, June 18, July 23, August 20 and September 17––and enthusiastic enjoyment ensues.

 

Load Your Palette with Artistic Adventures

The downtown museums are also part of the multi-colored amusements. The New Mexico Museum of History offers summer-long events centered on adobe architecture, which boasts far more than one shade of brown. The New Mexico Museum of Art’s “Colors of the Southwest” has already garnered avid return viewers (count me in), earning its title with an overview of the unique qualities of Southwestern color and light. Works by the Taos Society of Artists and Santa Fe’s historic Cinco Pintores share space with those of their modern artistic heirs. And as for the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, I think we can all agree that Georgia’s name guarantees gorgeous color.

“San Miguel,” this 1941 oil on canvas by Regina Tatum Cooke in the collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art, shows off New Mexico’s unchanging combination of blue sky and adobe.

“San Miguel,” this 1941 oil on canvas by Regina Tatum Cooke in the collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art, shows off New Mexico’s unchanging combination of blue sky and adobe.

Give Yourself the Rainbow of Santa Fe

Have I offered proof enough of a kaleidoscope of experiences turning the City Different into a colorful portrait of artistry and nature? And I haven’t even mentioned the galleries! Why not paint your summer vacation with Santa Fe colors––even the sunsets are happy to oblige!

In Santa Fe, rainbows and sunsets do paint the sky at the same time!

In Santa Fe, rainbows and sunsets do paint the sky at the same time!

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Beef Up National Burger Month in Santa Fe

May Day! May Day! The month of May is National Burger Month and the only distress signal conceivable is a lack of the singular element that lifts any burger to a higher culinary plane than every other beefy iteration––green chile! Once you’ve tasted the bravado our signature ingredient adds to the American classic, your burger bravos may never be the same. My guidelines for matching flavor and fire are here for your drooling pleasure.

Good, Better, Best­­––for Your Burger, Go Southwest

The “best list” concept is fraught with pitfalls, but Eater.com had every taste bud properly attuned when choosing the Santa Fe Bite’s green chile cheeseburger as one of Eater’s 21 essential U.S. burgers. The Bite’s outdoor patio on the Old Santa Fe Trail lets you bask in savory success as envious strollers slow down for a longing look. This isn’t the first time Eater has done a shout-out on the green chile cheeseburger. Pretty impressive considering that there are 50 states with who-knows-how-many cities boasting a panoply of perfect patties!

Aren’t you just dying to take a bite out of this Santa Fe Bite burger? (Photo Credit: The Santa Fe Bite)

Aren’t you just dying to take a bite out of this Santa Fe Bite burger? (Photo Credit: The Santa Fe Bite)

Great Burgers are in Santa Fe’s Back(Rail)Yard

The Bite was busy rocking its new location (having morphed from its Bobcat Bite incarnation), so the field was clear for Second Street Brewery at the Railyard to take top honors in last year’s Green Chile Smackdown, our annual competitive burg-a-thon (stay tuned for details on its autumn return). Their reigning chomp, the Alien Burger––a wacky combo of beef, bacon, green chile, cheese and a green chile relleno on top––makes repeat landings at both locations. Or, you can build your own fantasy burger while sampling their locally brewed craft beers.

Relaxing over a brew while you await your burger’s arrival is a favored locals’ past-time at Second Street Brewery at the Railyard.

Relaxing over a brew while you await your burger’s arrival is a favored locals’ past-time at Second Street Brewery at the Railyard.

Mining the Flavor of New Mexico

Tasting the People’s Choice 2014 GCCB (short name for burgers long on flavor) award-winner offers the bonus of a leisurely drive in the New Mexico countryside. The people spoke “Madrid” by choosing the Mine Shaft Tavern in historic Madrid, New Mexico, perched on the scenic Turquoise Trail, an alternate route between Santa Fe and Albuquerque that every local recommends to family and friends. A stop at this friendly village hangout yields a half-pound of Black Angus with aged cheddar and a duo of chiles (roasted and fired) resting comfortably on a brioche bun. Now that’s New Mexico comfort food!

Spending an afternoon at The Mine Shaft Tavern is a time-honored tradition.

Spending an afternoon at The Mine Shaft Tavern is a time-honored tradition.

Who’s Your Burger Mama?

When it comes to dinner, Mother Knows Best­­––and that’s my recommendation for the Cowgirl BBQ’s Mother Burger, the 2013 Smackdown People’s Choice. A meaty threesome of buffalo, bacon and beef meet their match when green chile and brie join the five-alarm taste sensation. The chile-cheddar bun adds its own special flare to the fun. And as for fun, you can’t beat the music scene at the Cowgirl! Additional note: Fido can come when you sit out on the dog-friendly patio, but it’s up to you whether to tempt your poor pooch’s discerning sense of smell.

Nick Peña of Food Tour New Mexico knows it’s right to honor your Mother Burger at the Cowgirl. (Photo Credit: Nick Peña)

Nick Peña of Food Tour New Mexico knows it’s right to honor your Mother Burger at the Cowgirl. (Photo Credit: Nick Peña)

Simply Santa Fe = Green Chile on Top

Despite the number of Smackdown participants, there can only be one winner, but that’s no reason not to try the also-rans––the competition was that stiff. My green chile meanderings frequently lead to Caffe Greco, where the simplicity of the burger lets each individual ingredient shine. Just the essentials­­­­––grass-fed beef plus melted cheddar, a pile of fresh-roasted green chile and a hearty bun––make this lunchtime excursion well worth your while. Add their Canyon Road location for easy art wandering and you’ve got the recipe for simply delicious satisfaction.

Caffe Greco adds the punch of green to the red, white and blue all-American classic cheeseburger.

Caffe Greco adds the punch of green to the red, white and blue all-American classic cheeseburger.

Stay and Dine In to Win at Burger-Boasting

When you stay at Santa Fe’s great hotels, you won’t have to look far for burger fare. Forget whatever you’ve heard about eating in hotel restaurants, because great Santa Fe dining is onsite. Hotel Santa Fe’s Amaya (Amaya Burger in Bison or Beef), Fuego at La Posada de Santa Fe (New Mexico Classic Green Chile Cheeseburger), the Rosewood Inn of the Anasazi (Anasazi Buffalo Burger) and Lumiaria at the Inn and Spa at Loretto (Sweet Grass Green Chile Cheeseburger, lunch only) were all 2014 Smackdown finalists and every one has a burger that deserves your chomping consideration.

Make space for a lunch date at Luminaria if you want to catch the subtle flavor of the Meyer lemon aioli on Chef Marc Quiñones’ burger.

Make space for a lunch date at Luminaria if you want to catch the subtle flavor of the Meyer lemon aioli on Chef Marc Quiñones’ burger.

Get All the Colors of the Rainbow with Your Green Chile

On the topic of hotel restaurants, I would be remiss if I didn’t suggest a short jaunt up north to watch the sun set from the serene patio at the Four Seasons Santa Fe. You can cuddle by the fire pit with a margarita until Chef Andrew Cooper’s Terra burger arrives slathered with a chipotle-infused barbecue sauce topped with a Santa Fe pepper relish. A word of advice: Do not––I repeat–– do not forego the onion rings!

The colors and flavors of Santa Fe warm your soul at Four Seasons Santa Fe. (Photo Credit: Four Seasons Santa Fe)

The colors and flavors of Santa Fe warm your soul at Four Seasons Santa Fe. (Photo Credit: Four Seasons Santa Fe)

National Burger Month Deserves Santa Fe Styling

You’re hungry now, right? So am I! Lucky me, I don’t have far to go to achieve the best in burger-ability, but it’s just as easy for you when you include a scrumptious green chile cheeseburger in your National Burger Month getaway. Mother, May I? Yes, you MAY!

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Santa Fe Ways For Spirited Spring Days

April showers do bring May flowers, but spring itself brings so much more to the City Different. The weather is beautifully breezy and the city is blooming with the bounty of events this season brings. If you’ve got spring fever, Santa Fe has the cure––and I’ve got the remedies for you to plant in your mind.

Santa Fe Shapes Inspiration

Shaping beauty is a Santa Fe specialty and if your taste for beauty runs to form and function, rest assured you’ll find both on April 25-26 at the Santa Fe Contemporary Clay Fair. This stunning array of work by the area’s best clay artists showcases functional artworks for daily use along with a bevy of clay whimsies guaranteed to make you smile.

Cheryl Hoagland’s handcrafted ceramic mug decorates your morning cuppa with Santa Fe color! (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Contemporary Clay Fair)

Cheryl Hoagland’s handcrafted ceramic mug decorates your morning cuppa with Santa Fe color! (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Contemporary Clay Fair)

The Clay Fair is conveniently located on the same street as the Santa Fe Children’s Museum, which means the kiddos can enjoy themselves at an Arbor Day celebration on Saturday, April 24. An all-day scavenger hunt is only part of the adventure. Budding gardeners can help plant fruit trees in the Earthworks Garden and aspiring young craftsmen get hands-on artistic experience making outdoor bird feeders.

Make May Your Artistic Adventure

The Clay Fair only lasts a weekend, but the Santa Fe Artists Market blossoms every Saturday (April through November under the Park Ramada; March and December on the Plaza by the Water Tower) at the Santa Fe Railyard. As you stroll though the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market, leave a space in your basket for an artful treasure or two. The market has a little bit of everything––you’ll find handspun wool and weavings, silver jewelry, paintings, prints, and who knows what else!

The sky’s the limit on creative ideas when SFUAD’s Vision Fest lights the way to May. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe University of Art and Design)

The sky’s the limit on creative ideas when SFUAD’s Vision Fest lights the way to May. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe University of Art and Design)

The merry month of May literally starts with the Santa Fe University of Art and Design’s annual Outdoor Vision Fest. Since May 1st is a Friday, this will be a don’t-miss TGIF! From 8:45 to 10:35 p.m., impressive outdoor installations and interactive multimedia creations by SFUAD students will light up the night at this free event. The 50-plus installations include a selection of guest artists––upping the ante on talent. The promise of food trucks onsite definitely adds to the City Different flavor.

Marshall Noice of Waxlander Gallery gets his teeth into the art experience on Canyon Road! (Photo Credit: visitcanyonroad.com)

Marshall Noice of Waxlander Gallery gets his teeth into the art experience on Canyon Road! (Photo Credit: visitcanyonroad.com)

May continues with more creative adventures that should find a home on any art lover’s calendar. May 8–9 sees the return of the wildly popular Passport to the Arts. That Friday night is a gallery-goer’s dream, with openings up and down historic Canyon Road. When Saturday dawns, artists line the street in choice spots for plying their brushes, cameras or sculpting tools. The following weekend, May 16–17, welcomes the annual Eldorado Studio Tour in Santa Fe’s “solar suburb.” When you see the work, you’ll understand why so many artists choose to live in this expansive enclave outside the city limits.

Native Treasures Festival’s 2015 Living Treasures are sisters Keri Ataumbi and Teri Greeves – and there’s even a breakfast with these talented artists on Wed. May 20! (Photo Credit: Native Treasures Indian Arts festival)

Native Treasures Festival’s 2015 Living Treasures are sisters Keri Ataumbi and Teri Greeves – and there’s even a breakfast with these talented artists on Wed. May 20! (Photo Credit: Native Treasures Indian Arts festival)

May 24–25 is another artistic bonanza, with not one but two events! Those who can’t wait for SWAIA’s August Indian Market get their satisfaction via the Native Treasures Indian Arts Festival. With more than 200 talents on display, this invitation-only exhibit at the Convention Center hosts the best of the best in indigenous arts––traditional to contemporary. Cathedral Park, on the north side of––you guessed it––our gorgeous Cathedral Basilica, is home to the Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild over the same weekend. That Northern New Mexico moniker is the clue; the artists and craftsmen come from both Santa Fe and serene villages scattered throughout our scenic countryside.

Birds will chirp overhead as you view Mario Hinoso’s fanciful gourd sculptures down below at the Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild Show. (Photo Credit: Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild)

Birds will chirp overhead as you view Mario Hinoso’s fanciful gourd sculptures down below at the Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild Show. (Photo Credit: Northern New Mexico Fine Arts and Crafts Guild)

Ride Into A Panoramic View (With A Cold One Waiting)

I got your attention with that “scenic countryside,” didn’t I? Since spring does make a gal want to get out and take a ride, the Outside Bike & Brew Festival is a must-do. This full week of two-wheeling adventure runs from May 13–17 and it’s a party-pack of fun, with a guided trail rides, clinics, the Santa Fe Century and leisurely culinary rides. Also on tap are three nights of beer festivals and nine bands including the hot, hot Reverend Horton Heat. The extremely refreshing and very popular Tour de Brewer rides from brewery to brewery anchors the ride schedule on Friday and Saturday, and bike clinics presented by professionals like pro mountain biker Rebecca Rusch are sure to please the pedal-happy.

Santa Fe is all ready to Bike and Brew and you’re invited to come along for the ride! (Photo Credit: Michael Clark; Rider: Mickey Fong)

Santa Fe is all ready to Bike and Brew and you’re invited to come along for the ride! (Photo Credit: Michael Clark; Rider: Mickey Fong)

Bring Your Spring Fling to Santa Fe

I won’t apologize for making your spring fever go up a few degrees––after all, that was the plan. Ideas and inspiration both await you, and all you have to do is spring into action by planning that Santa Fe getaway. You already know how to spring forward, so go ahead and take the leap into spring excitement City Different style.

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Show Us Your Santa Fe

Santa Fe’s Summer of Color is waiting in the wings but those of us in the know say, “Why wait?” Spring in Santa Fe is a rainbow of hues everywhere you look and there’s so much waiting for the perceptive eye (and camera lens). So rather than tell you, let us show you and also invite you to discover and share the colors you find with all who love our City Different.

Start in the Heart

There is definitely a beating heart in the center of our historic town. Like all Spanish Colonial cities, Santa Fe boasts a beautiful plaza anchoring a fascinating neighborhood that draws both locals and visitors to downtown adventures.

The Santa Fe Plaza is a peaceful, pretty picture all year round.

Down the street from the Plaza, the Romanesque towers of the Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis may be unfinished but the overall picture is still a beauty. (Photo Credit: LeRoy N. Sanchez)

The gorgeous glowing stained-glass windows of the Scottish Rite Temple are just one of the stars of this magnifiecnt Masonic edifice on the Paseo de Peralta.

Talk a Walk On the Art Side

At last count, Santa Fe’s museums numbered 17 and galleries stood at over 200; that means color comes in every form imaginable. With multiple arts districts in which to wander, something essentially Santa Fe is easy to find.

sculpture

Seeing Santa Fe on foot is a great way to appreciate the spring colors.

jewelry

Patina Gallery is just one of the ooh-ahh destinations for spring green in the West Palace Arts District.

site

Start at SITE Santa Fe and you can see the best of the Santa Fe Railyard arts district.

georgia

Even Georgia O’Keeffe posed for a New Mexico memory. (Photo 1950, Collection of the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum, Photographer Unknown)

zia

Santa Fe’s Bataan Military Museum offers a different picture of New Mexico history.

Santa Fe is a Feast for Body and Soul

A foodie’s fantasy destination like Santa Fe means a lot of point-and-shoot action before diners even pick up their forks. And no wonder––the variety of options is as awesome as the taste!

dinner

You can celebrate Christmas in springtime when you order your burrito Christmas-style at Tomasita’s!

margaritas

Think pink when you order a margarita at the Coyote Cantina but don’t neglect the standards––simply order a trio to share.

chocolate

The chocolate pyramid at The Teahouse is so artistic that you hesitate to dig in–– but it’s guaranteed to disappear after you put your camera down!

hats

You can shield your eyes while you’re on a photo shoot by picking up a colorful topper at Chapare.

moderngen

A visit to the bright, brand-new Modern General store makes a person feel sunny.

Santa Fe Grows as it Goes

The State of New Mexico’s motto––“Crescit Eundo” meaning “It Grows As it Goes”––is reflected in the cultural inroads spreading to parts of the city outside the downtown historc district. And the “going” is an exciting process worth exploring.

prescottstudios

Go West, Young Man, to see the colorful kinetic sculptures at Prescott Studios on Siler Road.

meowwolf

The Meow Wolf Art Collective is sure to drape their new space colorfully in an old bowling alley which is on its way to becoming an arts hot spot. (Photo Credit: Meow Wolf)

food

It’s easy to beat a case of the munchies with a visit to the westside Duel Brewery where there’s much more than just great beer.

santasidra

The cider craze has hit Santa Fe and Santa Sidra has the goods.

Mother Nature Reigns Over All

The piñon-juniper woodland in which Santa Fe is perched has natural wonders galore, and a visit with Mother Nature and her animal kingdom is always good for the spirit.

nest

In Santa Fe, spring deliveries are arriving daily! (Photo Credit: Scott Renbarger, Outspire Hiking)

monasterylake

With a good guide book, it doesn’t take long to find cool, cool water scenes and good fishing at places like Monastery Lake.

tentrocks

The weirdly fantastic landscape of Kasha Katuwe––Tent Rocks–– is worth a daytrip. (Photo Credit: Santa Fe Walkabouts)

Share Your Santa Fe

By now, your shutter finger is probably raring to go. If you’ve got something that’s simply Santa Fe in your photo roll, won’t you please share? Post it on Facebook, Instagram or Twitter with the hashtag #SantaFeColor for avid Santa Fe photo fans to see. If your album is currently devoid of Santa Fe delights, then spring is the ideal time to make a Santa Fe getaway part of your photographic history.

city-dusk

Don’t let the sun set on your springtime without adding Santa Fe to your photo roll.

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Picture Your Selfie in Santa Fe

Let critics say what they will about selfies – there’s no better way to remember one-of-a-kind places than by putting yourself right in the heart of the action. Iconic spots for making memories abound in Santa Fe, a truly iconic city in and of itself. Everyone has a favorite posing place, but I thought it would be interesting to take an informal selfie survey gathered from our photo-happy followers and friends.

Make A Point of Posing On the Plaza

I’m sure you’ve seen countless pictures with the Washington Mounment in the background when friends visit Washington D.C. You can simply transfer the scene to a portrait by the obelisk on our Santa Fe Plaza! The historic Palace of the Governors looks much as it did 400 years ago and makes a great backdrop for your shot. Just remember – if you’re including one of the Native American artists who sell their wares under the Palace portal, be sure to ask permission before taking the photo. When you tire of Plaza pics, trot over to the New Mexico Museum of Art to see some old school selfies.

In days gone by, getting an artistic selfie was a labor of love. (Photo Credit: Self-Portrait, Emil Bisttram, 1935, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art)

In days gone by, getting an artistic selfie was a labor of love. (Photo Credit: Self-Portrait, Emil Bisttram, 1935, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art)

Get Religion About Your Pictures

The Cathedral Basilica of St. Francis de Assisi, a long handle for the town’s tallest (yes!) building, has a host of spots for self-capture. Outside, you can’t beat the Bishop’s Garden, with an absolute perfection of blossoming trees and forsythia to showcase your pink cheeks. Or catch moment with the azure sky above the unfinished Romanesque belltowers (incomplete only because the founder of the Cathedral,Bishop Lamy, passed away). Inside, look to the soft flickering of red votive candles lit with requests to La Conquistadora.

Shadow self, silent night, Santa Fe #howtosantafe #simplysantafe #purenm

A photo posted by SantaFeRed (@santafered) on

You can give your selfie some mystery when you add Santa Fe history! (Photo Credit: @santafered)

 

Picture Yourself Artistic

Any time of day is a good time for a walk on Canyon Road. (Photo Credit: @fx_cordero)

Let’s face it – you’re already planning to stroll Canyon Road, so be sure your phone is charged. Renowned for the hundreds of galleries that line its path up the canyon, this historic street is a must-do activity in the City Different and it’s also lined with sculptures and colorful paintings to inspire your creativity.

studio notes ~ my studio mascot n'me….

A photo posted by dawn chandler (@taosdawn) on

Artist Dawn Chandler lets her Studio Mascot fill the frame! (Photo Credit: @taosdawn)

Sculpting the Perfect Selfie

Once Canyon Road whets your appetite for art, hop in the car and head to Shidoni Sculpture Garden for an afternoon of photo-crafting. Five miles north of the Plaza, Shidoni has a grassy lawn dotted with artworks ranging from sharply angled modernist steel to folk art whimsies. Shooting at Shidoni means you earn a post-production meal at the Tesuque Village Market for a taste of the Tesuque locals’ scene.

Picture yourself being served a wood-fired brick oven pizza at Tesuque Village Market. (Photo Credit: Tesuque Village Market)

Picture yourself being served a wood-fired brick oven pizza at Tesuque Village Market. (Photo Credit: Tesuque Village Market)

Put On A Fresh Face

Now that I have your attention––food photos always do that––you should know that our Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is one of the country’s best (Mother Nature knows!). With a plethora of farm-fresh goodies to savor at home or munch on the fly, foodies will definitely want to set up a tripod or just point and shoot. Our farmers are pretty photogenic too, so don’t hesitate to ask them to pose with you and their hand-crafted goodies or gorgeous greens.

Serving it up. Delicious Chef! #santafeculinaryacademy #santafefarmersmarket #chefrockydurham

A photo posted by Santa Fe Culinary Academy (@santafeculinaryacademy) on

Santa Fe Culinary Academy Chef Rocky Durham gets his selfie on at the Santa Fe Farmers Market. (Photo Credit: @santafeculinarycacdemy)

Make Your Portrait Garden Gorgeous

If you’re transfixed by scenic greenery, zip over to focus on the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. Two ramadas, signature stonework and the garden’s rotating sculpture exhibits all offer Instagram inspiration aplenty. By posing with Sun and Moon Mountains peeking over your shoulder or leaning on the signature red bridge, you’ll prove without a doubt that you know your way to Santa Fe.

Be Your Own Muse At Museum Hill

Once you’ve found wandered the Botanical Garden, you need only walk across the road to further your photo fantasies. Home to four separate museums (the Museum of Spanish Colonial Arts, the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, the Museum of International Folk Art and the Wheelwright Museum of the American Indian), Milner Plaza is the go-to for both panoramic vistas and great art. Since each museum has a gift shop that mirrors its collection, you can pick up some fun props before posing.

You provide the camera and Santa Fe will provide the colorful scene for a photo shoot.

You provide the camera and Santa Fe will provide the colorful scene for a photo shoot.

 

Star In Your Own Santa Fe Travelogue

Bring the selfie stick or leave it at home – either way, you’re sure to locate that perfect backdrop for your City Different getaway photo roll.You can even go pro by following the trail of the film professionals! Quirky or sedate, wedding party shenanigans or hiking in the high country, Santa Fe has been photogenic for centuries. It’s never too late for you to get in the picture, too!

 

 

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Greening Up Spring in Santa Fe

Spring cleaning time: Out with the old, in with the new! Last month, I took on the confusion around Old Mexico vs. New Mexico and that put me in the mood for busting another Santa Fe myth. My target is spring green – I’m talking about the Santa Fe landscape in spring and how it defies expectations.

The Piñon Tree Holds Star Status

Locals get a good laugh whenever out-of-state news featuring New Mexico show a stately saguaro cactus towering over the desert landscape…of Arizona! Just like the chronic New Mexico/Mexico mix-up, somehow a story has grown about Santa Fe being a mountain desert. The mountain part is spot-on. At 7,000 feet, that appellation is totally accurate and gorgeous to boot. But the desert part? Just ask the Arizonans who come to Santa Fe for our cool mountain air. The reality is Santa Fe’s is a Piñon-Juniper Woodland! The piñon, our state tree, shares its homeland with the humble and hardy juniper and both thrive with equal tenacity, easily living hundreds of years.

Piñon and juniper offer a dramatic backdrop for a hike at Cerrillos Hills State Park. (Photo credit: Cerrillos Hills State Park)

Piñon and juniper offer a dramatic backdrop for a hike at Cerrillos Hills State Park. (Photo credit: Cerrillos Hills State Park)

While healthy piñons and junipers can be spotted on any residential street, a broader view of the natural habitat is warranted. A visit to Cerrillos Hills State Park is a great idea. The low-lying pinon-juniper woodland is readily apparent in Cerrillos Hills, and rangers offer fascinating facts about the flora and fauna. If there’s a budding geologist in your mix, a trip to La Bajada with Outspire Hiking geologist/guide Scott Renbarger gives you a stone-solid grounding in Santa Fe’s ancient landscape.

Santa Fe Corrals Cactus

Santa Fe gardens have plenty of cacti for spring blooming – but that’s from being Southwestern, not from being a desert. Local gardeners love the low level of maintenance required. Drought-tolerant prickly pear and cholla, and those who know their succulent stuff, add New Mexico pincushion or fishhook cacti for variety.

Prickly pear pricks up appetites with jelly made from its paddles, and lucky lookers might spot some at the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market. I love to spice things up with prickly pear green chile jam from the Santa Fe School of Cooking Market (hint: there’s also prickly pear syrup to glaze that Easter ham). And a prickly pear margarita at The Shed or the Amaya Bar at the Hotel Santa Fe makes for a memorable TGIF.

You’ll fee in the pink when the Santa Fe color arrives via a prickly pear margarita. (Photo credit: virutaltourist.com)

You’ll fee in the pink when the Santa Fe color arrives via a prickly pear margarita. (Photo credit: virutaltourist.com)

How Does A Santa Fe Garden Grow?

The 2013 opening of the Santa Fe Botanical Garden gave local plant lovers a boost; updating botanic knowledge with the Plant of the Month is a snap. Over fifteen years of patient planning became a 14-acre home for a host of native species that create a picturesque setting for site-specific sculpture exhibits. The Orchard Gardens are now complete, and regular lectures and workshops are a popular way to expand your personal knowledgebase. Phase Two, Ojos y Manos: Eyes and Hands, an educational and cultural center, is plowing its way toward an opening in 2016.

Birds of more than one kind of feather land in the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. (Photo credit: Santa Fe Botanical Garden)

Birds of more than one kind of feather land in the Santa Fe Botanical Garden. (Photo credit: Santa Fe Botanical Garden)

NOT being a desert has growing advantages, evident on a Santa Fe Garden Club Tour. As soon as April flowers start blossoming, the Club begins Pequeno (meaning small in Spanish) Tours. The experience lasts three to four hours and is offered mid-April through October, taking visitors to three stunning residences with gorgeous gardens in the company of a knowledgeable guide. Seeing native plants and exotic species is sure to whet your interest to return for Behind Adobe Walls, a pair of Tuesday tours (July 21 and 28) that visits eight fabulous homes set amidst graceful garden scenery. These tours are a bonus, because the education on beautiful blooms showcases the architectural wonders of Santa Fe style.

Santa Fe Has Hacienda History

Thinking about signature dwellings leads me – literally – to El Rancho de las Golondrinas, one of my favorite places for enjoying New Mexico’s panoramic landscape. With April’s arrival, El Rancho welcomes spring with docent tours (Monday–Friday), perfect for getting the backstory on this historic ranch museum. The events calendar kicks off May 2 and 3 with Battlefields & Homefronts New Mexico: The Civil War and More. Starting in June, self-guided adventures are the modus operandi Wednesday through Sunday; summer to fall, weekends are ripe with cultural experiences that highlight New Mexico’s heritage and the legacy of its hardworking inhabitants.

A Civil War weekend at El Rancho de las Golondrinas gives a southwestern slant to the battle of Blue and Gray. (Photo credit: El Ranchi de las Golondrinas)

A Civil War weekend at El Rancho de las Golondrinas gives a southwestern slant to the battle of Blue and Gray. (Photo credit: El Ranchi de las Golondrinas)

Legacy brings Leonora Curtin to mind. A nature lover who spent much of her late 1800s childhood in Santa Fe, her book Healing Herbs of the Upper Rio Grande is the result of her fascination with the native herbs plied by curanderas, natural healers who doctored rural New Mexico villagers. The Leonora Curtin Wetland, a pristine 35-acre preserve named for this avid naturalist lies adjacent to El Rancho de las Golondrinas, which Curtin purchased with her mother in 1932. Open May to October on Saturdays from 9:00 a.m. to noon and Sundays from 1:00 to 4:00 p.m., the preserve offers free guided walks by Botanical Garden docents on the first and third Saturday. Located in a rare natural cienega (the Spanish word for marsh), the wetland boasts three distinct plant zones well worth examining.

Climate + Countryside = The City Different

I’ve made my case for closer examination of Santa Fe’s nature. Desert, no; dry, yes – a real plus since our low humidity makes the City Different utterly delightful whether temperatures go high or low. Ideal weather is definitely part of our appeal, and so is the lack of biting insects that can’t survive our altitude. I can promise you this: When your Santa Fe getaway reveals the climate-created color in our piñon-juniper woodland, you’ll never think of Santa Fe as home to saguaros again!

St. Francis, Santa Fe’s patron saint, knows that spring is a harbinger of Santa Fe’s Summer of Color.

St. Francis, Santa Fe’s patron saint, knows that spring is a harbinger of Santa Fe’s Summer of Color.

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Santa Fe Women Make It Happen

As Women’s History Month draws to a close, let it be known that Santa Fe women are still making history. This trend began when the first settlers’ wives joined the indigenous New Mexico female population and it shows no sign of slacking. Santa Fe was recently named the #1 place in the U.S. for women-owned businesses and with a rich heritage created by impressive female figures from the past, it’s no wonder Santa Fe thrives under today’s busy feminine hands. Modern Santa Fe women totally deserve the notice they’ve earned and the round-up below is an introduction to ladies worth reading about.

The Kitchens of the World Learn From Santa Fe

You’ve heard it said that a woman’s place is in the kitchen but that doesn’t mean staying home. Since 1984, the Santa Fe School of Cooking has put New Mexico’s regional cuisine and culinary traditions on the map for food-lovers around the globe. Born of founder Susan Curtis’ midlife career switch, the school has grown into the expert on southwestern flavors, including the Three Sisters—beans, corn and squash—and chile, our signature crop.

Southwestern Bootcamp at the Santa Fe School of Cooking offers some heart-pounding excitement in the kitchen (Photo Credit: Santa Fe School of Cooking)

Southwestern Bootcamp at the Santa Fe School of Cooking offers some heart-pounding excitement in the kitchen (Photo Credit: Santa Fe School of Cooking)

Classes run the gamut from traditional dishes all the way to the three-day intensive Southwest Culinary Bootcamp, an immersion into authentic ingredients and techniques. Specialty experiences welcome noted experts like Oaxacan chef Susana Trilling and cheese maven Laura Werlin; renowned Southwestern savant Cheryl Alters Jamison is a regular in the school’s kitchen. Restaurant Walking Tours created by Director of Operations Nicole Curtis Ammerman are a TripAdvisor favorite and the online market has those one-of-a-kind items guaranteed to keep the creativity flowing.

Chef Michelle Roetzer leads the way on a Santa Fe School of Cooking Restaurant Walking Tour. (Photo Credit: Eric Swanson)

Chef Michelle Roetzer leads the way on a Santa Fe School of Cooking Restaurant Walking Tour. (Photo Credit: Eric Swanson)

Chef Michelle Roetzer, who somehow finds time to teach at the Cooking School, boasts a day job as head of the Santa Fe Community College Culinary Arts Program. Mica is revered for mentoring up-and-comers, whom she fondly calls her “cheflings.” The balance of Culinary Arts talent includes Helen Singleton Nichols, lead pastry chef who began teaching there in 2012 and chef/pâtissière Leslie Chavez, named “2013 Chef of the Year” by the New Mexico Culinary Association.

Santa Fe Women Cook Up A Storm

Santa Fe’s food culture extends to caterers and restaurant kitchens. Chef Lois Ellen Frank of Red Mesa Cuisine has dedicated herself to keeping America’s indigenous techniques and flavors alive. Her fascinating lineage, Kiowa Nation on her mother’s side and Sephardic on her father’s, led Chef Lois to a Ph.D. in Culinary Anthropology from the University of New Mexico. More than 20 years spent documenting the foodways of Native America culminated in “Foods of the Southwest Indian Nations,” an engaging read featuring traditional and contemporary recipes.

Chef Lois Ellen Frank makes frybread magic with prickly-pear syrup and fresh berries. (Photo Credit: Lois Ellen Frank)

Chef Lois Ellen Frank makes frybread magic with prickly-pear syrup and fresh berries. (Photo Credit: Lois Ellen Frank)

After 17 years of catering memorable parties, Catherine O’Brien and Glenda Griswold set up permanent shop at Terracotta Wine Bistro. This casual, fun downtown spot is a locals’ favorite, not only for the wine list and the food flare (oh, those onion rings!) but also for the central location down the street from the Georgia O’Keeffe Museum.

The good news? The lady of the house doesn’t have to cook because breakfast is served all day at Café Pasqual’s! (Photo Credit: Café Pasqual’s)

The good news? The lady of the house doesn’t have to cook because breakfast is served all day at Café Pasqual’s! (Photo Credit: Café Pasqual’s)

The ladies run the show, too. Café Pasqual’s menu perfection was patiently honed by Kathryn Kagel, who now gets to enjoy ownership and let someone else do the cooking. Kagel’s commitment to the best includes buying from certified organic producers and many menu items are designed to morph into vegetarian, vegan or gluten-free delights. Two cookbooks show the fruits of her labor and so does the line out the door for breakfast – hint, go early!

Take a Santa Fe Hike, Sister!

After breakfast, our gals know how to get out of doors. Outspire Hiking, the brainchild of Karen Dennison, has a proven record on finding the best spots for panoramic senery. A biologist-turned-guide, Karin is also an avid fly-fisher and co-authored a book on regional fly-tieing; her gal-guides are just as knowledgeable about the area as the guys. Sue Mally, co-owner of Santa Fe Walkabouts, took the long way round to get to Santa Fe—she’s a native of Burma—but she’s 100% local now and Walkabouts’ tours offer an insider’s view of the Land of Enchantment. And if you just want to sit back and listen, riding along on a Custom Tour by Clarice means you’ll see all the downtown sights while absorbing the local lore when Clarice Coffey herself is at the wheel.

Santa Fe’s Designing Women Make It Beautiful

You never know who will show up to have a portrait painted by Barbara Meikle. (Photo Credit: Barbara Meikle Fine Art)

You never know who will show up to have a portrait painted by Barbara Meikle. (Photo Credit: Barbara Meikle Fine Art)

If you think Santa Fe’s artistic legacy is being neglected, think again! Not only do women own plenty of galleries, they craft the pottery, paintings, photographs and jewelry shown there. Pet traveler? Caitlin Elizabeth Photography will make a record of Fifi’s visit to Santa Fe. Prefer a painting for the family room? Barbara Meikle opened Meikle Fine Art after demand for her colorful images became so high that setting up her easel in the gallery made life simpler. Those who love the Midas touch always visit The Golden Eye, where the legacy of hand-crafted jewelry established by Norah Pierson is kept alive by a bevy of talented craftswomen.

Come Celebrate the SantaFeminine

I could go on, but I suspect I’ve said enough to make you start checking plane fare. Women’s History Month may be ending but Santa Fe celebrates the skills and dedication of the distaff side all year long. Adam’s life became richer once Eve was in the picture, and your life will do the same when you visit Santa Fe to discover the women of the City Different.

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Santa Fe: A Spring Rainbow of Color

Santa Fe Baldy still has its white cap, inviting Ski Santa Fe lovers to take those last few runs, but winter is officially over – today is the first day of spring! Santa Fe is #3 on Travel + Leisure’s list for best U.S. weather, thanks in part to more than 320 annual days of sunshine. Right now, that friendly sun is painting Santa Fe with swaths of color. There’s more than one way to explore the City Different through the eyes of an artist.

Santa Fe Is Right Before Your Eyes

Santa Fe is embarking on a Summer of Color, but maybe you just can’t wait that long. There’s nothing quite like spring color and I know just where to find it. A hike along the Dale Ball Trails in search of wildflowers is on my itinerary. This 22-mile trail network is perfect for those who simply want a stroll in the fresh mountain air, as well as avid hikers and bikers who crave the stunning view of downtown Santa Fe these trails offer. Two trailheads, one where Canyon Road intersects with Cerro Gordo Road and one in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains on Hyde Park Road offer choice scenic greenery. Of course, a sunset hike promises a dazzling display of the mountains aglow with reds and purples!

Santa Fe has unforgettable sunsets – nightly!

Santa Fe has unforgettable sunsets – nightly!

After an invigorating hike, you might be ready to catch some color at a different pace. Fortunately for your inner artist, that’s easy to find – simply make tracks for the New Mexico Museum of Art, getting a jump on the Summer of Color with the Colors of the Southwest exhibition. Iconic works by renowned New Mexico artists past to present offer an education in the Land of Enchantment’s magic. A variety of media is on display with watercolors, ceramics, oils and more showcasing the signature blend of light and color that consistently draws a rich pool of talent to New Mexico.

In their time, modernists like Dorothy Morang made the Santa Fe landscape look new.  (Photo courtesy of the New Mexico Museum of Art | Dorothy Morang, Sunrise, 1940, watercolor on paper, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art. Photo: Blair Clark)

In their time, modernists like Dorothy Morang made the Santa Fe landscape look new.
(Photo courtesy of the New Mexico Museum of Art | Dorothy Morang, Sunrise, 1940,
watercolor on paper, Collection of the New Mexico Museum of Art. Photo: Blair Clark)

Put That Color on My Plate Please

Spring equals eating green in my recipe book. The stewpot has moved to the back of the shelf in favor of the season’s first greens from the Santa Fe Farmers’ Market. On Saturday mornings, you’ll find locals snapping up garden-fresh goodies. Baby spinach is on my shopping list, but anything green might end up in my market basket nestled next to a bar of handmade Milk and Honey soap or a hank of handspun yarn. The Farmers’ Market is great for breakfast too – the Café’s fresh Aroma coffee is the perfect companion for people watching. I’ll even share my secret – bring that traveling mug and a cuppa joe is only a buck fifty!

The Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is a must-do destination for locals and visitors alike.

The Santa Fe Farmers’ Market is a must-do destination for locals and visitors alike.

If coffee has been banned from your beverage lexicon, you’re in luck! Santa Fe has the cold-press juice craze covered. Verde Juice’s bounty runs from the refreshing Apple Cleanse, a cucumber blend rich in iron, to my personal favorite, the Piña Verde, with just enough sweetness to sweeten my morning. Low-calorie and delicious, that’s my wake-up motto! BODY of Santa Fe offers up their Alchemy in a glass – a spicy garden cleanse with a hit of jalapeño. The newbie on the block, Modern General, has a turmeric health shot blended with orange, honey and cayenne that is the anti-inflammatory answer to whatever ails you.

Santa Fe Makes You Hungry For More

I get by early with small bites but when lunch or dinner rolls around, my appetite becomes huge in a hurry. I appreciate Vinaigrette’s heap of seasonal greens, which are mighty without being loaded with calories. The self-titled “salad bistro” lives up to its appellation with a creative collection, from All Kale Caesar to Omega and everything in-between. I love the colorful names, but I love the greenery even more. And my honey, who actually needs the calories (color me jealous), has a choice of fish or meat options for his higher fuel requirements.

Applewood-smoked bacon is a special surprise on Santacafe’s Maine Lobster Salad.

Applewood-smoked bacon is a special surprise on Santacafe’s Maine Lobster Salad.

When I crave casual elegant dining, I choose Santacafé. I can honestly say I’ve never been disappointed with anything I order, but give me a Spring Citrus Salad with avocado and jicama for lunch or the Maine Lobster on iceberg lettuce for dinner, and I am one happy camper. I will, however, admit to the Santacafé burger when my need for green can only be satisfied by green chile!

Make Santa Fe Your Fresh Adventure

Still making plans for a spring escape? Look no further than Santa Fe for the new, the old, the modern and the ancient because we’ve got it all. Grab a getaway special for a fresh take on the City Different, and along with one-of-a-kind souvenirs and tales of artistic adventures, you’ll go home with a rainbow of rich memories about spring.

Bridge the time between winter and summer with a spring getaway in Santa Fe!

Bridge the time between winter and summer with a spring getaway in Santa Fe!

 

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