Fall in New Mexico is a spirited season, with golden aspens, crisp days and nights and a full calendar of events for everyone. Take in a world-class independent film festival or a groundbreaking art exhibit from a MacArthur “genius” award recipient. Meet the ghosts of New Mexico’s past during a spooky Halloween festival on historic grounds. However, you spend autumn in Santa Fe, you’ll be bewitched by the beauty of the season.
Start by raising a glass to toast the season with New Mexico-brewed Oktoberfest ale. This classic German lager from the Santa Fe Brewing Company is full of Munich maltiness and notes of Bavarian hops. You can savor the seasonal Oktoberfest at the Santa Fe Brewing Company’s Brewery Tasting Room in Santa Fe and its Eldorado taphouse, too. Both spots are popular with locals and visitors alike. While you don’t have to be dressed in lederhosen to enjoy this refreshing ruby-colored lager, you’ll likely be tempted to bust out an old-fashioned German drinking song or two and make lots of toasts with “Prost!”
Also on tap in October is the celebrated Santa Fe International Film Festival, this year honoring legendary filmmakers John Waters and the husband-and-wife team of John Sayles and Maggie Renzi. Taking place, October 18-22, 2017, this five-day festival is devoted to advancing innovative and cutting-edge independent filmmaking, with a full schedule of more than 100 screenings, panels, parties and more in venues across the city. Festival programs will showcase the latest independent films and directors as well as Native cinema, New Mexico made films and student films. What began in 2009 as a fringe festival housed in a community center has grown into one of New Mexico’s biggest events, with crowds reaching 10,000. IndieWire Magazine has called the Santa Fe Independent Film Festival, “a young Sundance.” Moviemaker Magazine named it one of the, “25 Coolest General Film Festivals,” and one of the, “50 Festivals Worth the Entry Fee,” in the last four years running. If you’re a fan of film, this is the event for you.
At the Center for Contemporary Arts, the inspiring exhibit “Tom Joyce: Everything at Hand” features new work from the acclaimed Santa Fe artist, including forged and cast iron sculpture as well as iron-inspired photography, video, mixed media installations and charred drawings. Joyce, who trained as a blacksmith in the northern New Mexico village of El Rito, is a pioneer in the art and science of forging iron and his work explores iron’s historical, environmental and political implications. His monumental contemporary sculptures incorporate remnants and byproducts from industry and manufacturing, referencing iron’s former life as an essential material for the world’s government agencies, military forces and multinational corporations. With studios in Santa Fe and Brussels, Joyce lectures around the world and has exhibited his work in Finland, Wales, Paris, Germany, Mexico, Moscow and elsewhere. He is the recipient of a prestigious MacArthur Foundation Fellowship and has been inducted into the Smithsonian Institution’s Archives of American Art.
Halloween is in the air, and more than a few spirits are reaching out to you. So journey back in time to meet some of New Mexico’s infamous and not-so-famous ghosts at the first-ever “Spirits of New Mexico’s Past,” a spooky Halloween festival at Rancho de las Golondrinas held Saturday, October 28, 2017, from 5-8 p.m. You’ll gather outside beneath the dark skies around luminarias (bonfires) and enjoy biscochitos (cinnamon and anise cookies, a local favorite), hot cider and hard cider (for adults). Step inside, and you’ll be greeted by ghostly spirits from centuries past, sharing tales about their lives and bygone events. What better way to prepare for All Hallows’ Eve than with the ghostly spirits at this haunted living history museum.
Planning a fall getaway to Santa Fe will allow you to take in some of the area’s best events and sights. Start planning your autumn adventure by ordering the free 2017 Santa Fe Travel Guide. Be sure to check out our page, Deals and Specials, which includes special offers on lodging, meals and shopping.