The First Annual Las Cruces Country Music Festival continues Saturday, May 17 with a concert, workshop, meet-and-greet and more.
A meet-and-greet session will take place at the Rio Grande Theater from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m., where event merchandise will also be available for purchase. At 2 p.m., critically acclaimed songwriter Tommy Lee James and country music artist Chase Yaklin will host a songwriter’s workshop.
Gates open at 5 p.m. in La Placita and at Las Cruces Avenue for Saturday evening’s concert featuring Bri Bagwell, Darryl Worley, and Craig Campbell. A one-hour autograph session will follow at 9:30 p.m., location to be announced.
Tickets for Friday night’s concert are $20 in advance or $25 at the door. A Double-Shot ticket for both Friday and Saturday’s concerts is $30 in advance or $35 at the door, $50 for a weekend pass, and $150 for an all-access VIP pass.
Hotel Encanto, Springhill Suites, Hilton Garden Inn, Holiday Inn Express-North, Staybridge Suites, and Motel 6 are offering special room rates for Las Cruces Country Music Festival attendees.
For more information, visit www.lccountryfest.com.
|LAS CRUCES- The Las Cruces Convention and Visitor’s Bureau has announced that it will be hosting a weekly information booth at the Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market, starting Saturday, June 30.The booth will be staffed by CVB employees and will serve as a ‘mobile’ visitors center on weekends. Information on local attractions such as dining, entertainment, and events will be provided. CVB staff will also be available to answer questions.
“A presence at the market will allow the CVB to be on hand to provide Las Cruces and state-wide visitor information to the thousands of visitors and residents who attend the market every Saturday,” said Phil San Filippo, CVB Executive Director.
The Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market takes place for 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM on Wednesdays and Saturdays in the Downtown Mall. For more information about the market, call 575-541-2288 or visit www.lascrucesfarmersmarket.org.
The Las Cruces Convention and Visitor’s Bureau is located at 211 N Water Street and is open Monday-Friday from 8 AM to 5 PM, and Saturdays from 8:30 AM to 12:30 PM at the Las Cruces Farmers and Crafts Market. For more information, call 575-541-2444 or visit www.staysunny.org.
The Las Cruces Convention and Visitor’s Bureau has kicked-off its summer-long V.I.K. (Very Important Kid) program to encourage families to visit Las Cruces.
Through the program, Las Cruces hotels and restaurants will be offering free stays and meals to children from now until August 31.
“We want to demonstrate that Las Cruces is a family friendly destination,” said CVB Executive Director Philip San Filippo. “Las Cruces is full of great free activities for families to take advantage of this summer.”
The Las Cruces CVB will be providing a welcome package to kids which include crayons, a coloring book, and a V.I.K. badge to be presented at participating restaurants to receive free program benefits.
Participating hotels include Hampton Inn & Suites, Hotel Encanto de Las Cruces, La Quinta Mesilla Valley, Ramada Palms de Las Cruces and SpringHill Suites. Kids stay free at these hotels during the program and special family summer rates are also available.
Kids 12 and under can eat free with adult entrée purchase at De La Vega’s Pecan Grill, Double Eagle, La Posta, Lorenzo’s, and The Game restaurants.
“Our hotels and restaurants have come together to offer great deals to families looking to get out and explore this summer,” said San Filippo.
Families are encouraged to check out local attractions and activities that are either free or offering free admission for kids including city museums, galleries, Red Hawk Golf Club, Kahuna’s water park, Music in the Park or White Sands National Monument which offers free admission to kids 15 and under. Kids and families may also be interested in additional free recreational opportunities such as local sight-seeing, hiking, biking.
The Las Cruces CVB will be promoting the V.I.K. program through Facebook and Twitter and in select publications within targeted in-state and regional markets.
For information, contact the Las Cruces CVB at 575-541-2444 or visit www.staysunny.org.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Local musician Randy Granger is turning to a unique method of funding his new album project. The idea is called Kickstarter and is quickly becoming a very popular way of raising money for projects as varied as recording or releasing a CD to films, inventions and books. Kickstarter, created in 2008, is what is now called “crowd funding” where the general public, or backers, contribute money towards at different levels in exchange for rewards. Rewards could be a copy of the finished CD, their name in the liner notes or a house concert.
Kickstarter is a new way to fund creative projects based on the beliefs that: A good idea, communicated well, can spread fast and wide. A large group of people can be a tremendous source of money and encouragement. Kickstarter is powered by a unique all-or-nothing funding method where projects must be fully-funded or no money changes hands. If the financial goal set by the project creator is not met within the project’s time frame it receives no money. Conversely if it exceeds the goal then it goes to the project. Kickstarter keeps a 5% fee and Amazon, who processes the donations, applies a credit card fee. Project creators spend an average two weeks tweaking their campaigns, making a video, becoming verified with Amazon and submitting their project for review by the Kickstarter staff. Once approved it is set to launch.
Granger, an independent artist, was forced to take over a year off of touring, promoting and performing his music to care for his partner, the late poet Wayne Crawford, in 2010 after a devastating diagnosis of terminal pancreatic cancer. He was primary caregiver and steward during the illness which included many trips to MD Anderson in Houston, buying and moving into a smaller home, chemotherapy and eventually home Hospice. Crawford passed away at home March 12, 2011. The consummate professional, Granger missed a scheduled performance that day at the New Mexico Cowboy Days in Las Cruces, but showed up to perform the next day at his scheduled time much to the shock of the organizers.
Throughout the experience he made mental musical notes knowing he would have to transform the experience of the personal into the universal. He sees this both as a way to work through his own grief and to comfort other people going through the experience of loss or grief. His Kickstarter campaign’s tagline reads, “Pre-order “Strong Medicine” the cathartically joyous new CD.” Strong Medicine being the album title. He says the new songs are not morbid but joyous in the sense you come away from an experience like this humbled yet renewed in the compassion and generosity of people who help you along the way. Since the death he has resumed performing as much as possible though is finding taking time away can make it a challenge to re-interest promoters and festivals. The past year has been consumed in part with listing Crawford’s house and settling his estate.
One song on the new album was inspired by talking to his friend poet Pam Speer who lost her husband, poet “Beatlick” Joe Speer just months before to the same pancreatic cancer. As the two sat in Granger’s kitchen over coffee Speer said, “I just want to know where he went. Where did he go?” A thought he shared and has come to find many newly grieving do as well. Thus was born the song “Where did you go” where Granger writes,
“Where did you go
Where are you now
Are you the gooseflesh on my neck
The whisper in my ear
The cloud that looks like an angel”
Granger is raising funds to pay for the duplication and manufacturing of the new CD. His backer rewards include a “thank you” on the CD, a signed copy, a 30-minute Native American flute lesson via Skype and even a Red Chile Enchilada dinner and performance in the backer’s home. He is known for his cooking skills by his fans and friends alike.
To learn more about Kickstarter visit www.kickstarter.com. To find Granger’s campaign go to www.kickstarter.com/projects/randygranger.
Granger is an award-winning musician, composer, songwriter and performer who lives in Las Cruces, NM where he volunteers his music at Hospice and performs locally at special events and festivals when not on the road. www.randygranger.net.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Three summer exhibitions open at the Las Cruces Museum of Art on Friday, June 1, 2012. Featured exhibits include Lynn Wiley’s “Where is the Stopping Place” “Chicanismo” by Gabriel Perez, and “A Surprising Similitude in Mud and Paper” with works by Sara D’Alessandro and Harriet Russell. A reception for the artists will be held on Friday, June 1, 2012 from 5 to 7pm during the monthly Ramble. The exhibits close on Saturday, July 21, 2012.
Now a resident of Las Cruces, Lynn Wiley’s large-scale watercolors are derived from her study of the ocotillo cactus. The images are without ornamentation so that they can be seen “as directly as possible …as you would see a landscape.” Ms. Wiley’s works have been featured in numerous exhibitions.
Gabriel Perez, a native of Roswell, NM, who now resides in Las Cruces and Albuquerque, uses his southern New Mexico upbringing as a source for his art. His large and small scale works in the exhibit “Chicanismo” revolve around his “surveys of tacos and burgers” that “…in a light-hearted way examine the concepts of Chicanismo or Mexican-American culture.”
Sara D’Alessandro and Harriet Russell are artists who work in different media creating similar images. Ms. D’Alessandro’s works in clay are “…imbued with highly developed textures and patterns” while Ms. Russell uses “…paper, inks and paints to create and compose surreal images that come alive…”
The Las Cruces Museum of Art is located at 491 N. Main Street, next to Branigan Cultural Center. Gallery hours are Tuesday through Saturday, 9:00 AM to 4:30 PM. The Museum is closed Sundays and Mondays. For more information, call (575) 541-2137 or visit the website www.las-cruces.org/museums
Antique Treasures Day
June 10, 12 to 4 p.m.
This is the only one day each year visitors get the opportunity to enjoy a behind-the-scenes look at the facility’s collections and preservation program. Antique Treasures Day features guided tours into the Museum’s enormous collections storage room where more than 9,000 artifacts are housed in a climate-controlled environment. Museum curators will talk about the process of donating artifacts along with their care and preservation once they arrive at the Museum. Admission is $5 for adults, $3 for senior citizens and $2 for children 5 to 17.
Lecture Series: An Evening with Cactus Chris
June 14, 7 p.m.
Cowboy humorist and “artistic geezer” Cactus Chris Buethe is featured in this month’s lecture series. He tells stories, sings songs, recites cowboy poetry and provides plenty of laughs. Dr. Buethe is an award-winning teacher, poet and proven entertainer. Admission is a suggested donation of $2.
Plant and Tree Sale
June 23, 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The Museum will have a plant and tree sale at its greenhouse this month. This sale mostly will feature trees and shrubs. Admission is not required for the plant sale only.
For more information, please call (575) 522-4100. New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum, 4100 Dripping Springs Road, Las Cruces, NM 88011 www.nmfarmandranchmuseum.org.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – The Southern New Mexico Pride Planning Committee would like to remind all potential vendors for the 2012 Southern New Mexico Pride Festival that time is quickly running out. The annual outdoor event celebrating diversity within the City of Las Cruces will take place from 10am to 3pm on June 16th, 2012 at Pioneer Women’s Park. The Committee invites interested vendors, groups and other non-profit organizations to be one of the many already registered to set up a table or booth providing information about their organization or with merchandise to sell.
The deadline to sign up for this one-of-a-kind event is June 1st, after which the fees will be increased. Current fees are $10 for for-profit booths (vendors selling goods) and $5 for non-profit booths (vendors distributing information only). Starting June 1st, all booth fees are $20. Booth reservations will not be accepted after June 10th. All fees will be used to support the operating expenses of Southern New Mexico Pride and ensure future Pride events for our community.
More information and registration forms can be found by going to the Southern New Mexico Pride website at www.SouthernNMPride.org.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Southern New Mexico Pride will hold its annual “Queer Bake-Off” Saturday, June 16 from 12:30 to 1:30 pm at Pioneer Women’s Park as part of its annual Pride event. There is no entry fee and the event is open to all. Contestants are encouraged to submit their favorite baked good and its recipe in select categories for judging. Winning recipes will be auctioned off with proceeds to benefit Southern New Mexico Pride. Prizes will be awarded in the following categories: Best Pies/Tarts, Best Cake/Cupcake, Best Cookies/ Bars/Brownies, and Best Other.
Southern New Mexico Pride will hold its annual Pride event on June 16, 2012 from 10am – 3pm at Pioneer Women’s Park. The theme of this year’s event is “Unity Through Diversity.” The event begins with a walking parade through downtown Las Cruces at 10am. Participants will gather at the park at 9:50 am. The bake-off is part of a full weekend of scheduled events, including Drag Bingo, an Under 20 Dance, a Pride After Party and an All-Ages Pool Party, details for which can be found by visiting our website.
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – After last year’s success, Southern New Mexico Pride announces its Second Annual Pride Art Show, featuring artists from throughout Southern New Mexico, at this year’s Pride Festival, Saturday, June 16, 2012. The entry fee is $20 and the event is open to all. Up to four original works of art may be submitted per artist and all work must be delivered to the Women’s Club Building, at 340 N. Reymond across from the Pioneer Women’s Park, on Friday, June 15, 2012, from 5pm to 7pm. They will then be juried by a panel of qualified experts selected by Southern New Mexico Pride Board. A 20% commission will be charged on all work sold during the Festival and awards will be given out to works in several categories. A full list of rules and entry forms can be obtained by visiting www.SouthernNMPride.org.
Southern New Mexico Pride will hold its annual Pride event on June 16, 2012 from 10am – 3pm at Pioneer Women’s Park. The theme of this year’s event is “Unity Through Diversity.” The event begins with a walking parade through downtown Las Cruces at 10am. Participants will gather at the park at 9:50 am. The Pride Art Show is part of a full weekend of scheduled events, including Drag Bingo, an Under 20 Dance, a Pride After Party and an All-Ages Pool Party, details for which can be found by visiting our website.
Southern New Mexico Pride Invites Everyone who Values “Unity Through Diversity” to Celebrate With Us at the 2012 GLBTQ Pride Festival
LAS CRUCES, N.M. – Southern New Mexico Pride invites everybody to come out for this year’s GLBTQ Pride Weekend, taking place from the 15th through the 17th of June, 2012. This is a very important milestone year for GLBTQ Pride, with the historic endorsement by the highest office in the Nation, and to celebrate, every individual who agrees with the theme for this year’s event, “Unity Through Diversity” is invited to attend. Events scheduled to take place during the Festival include a Parade, a juried Art Show, Pet Blessings, A Queer Bake-Off and performances by local entertainers, including Randy Granger and “Singing Out,” the LBGTQA Chorus. The Pride Festival itself will take place from 10am to 3pm on Saturday, June 16th at Pioneer Women’s Park, 500 W. Las Cruces Avenue.
Other events coinciding with that weekend will include Drag Bingo, an All-Ages Pool Party and not one, but two Pride Dance Parties. Drag Bingo will take place at the Alameda House, located at 526 S. Alameda Blvd., beginning at 7pm on the evening of June 15th, sponsored by Southern New Mexico Pride and featuring the freshly crowned Mr. and Ms. Southern New Mexico Pride. The Under 20 Dance will take place at the Women’s Building, directly across from Pioneer Women’s Park, beginning at 7:30pm on June 16th and will be presented in partnership with Families and Youth Incorporated. The Pride After Party will begin at 9pm on June 16th and is presented in partnership with Triple Threat Productions. An all-ages Pool Party will take place at the Desert Hills Pool, located at 5800 La Reina Rd. on the evening of June 17th, beginning at 6:30pm and presented in partnership with the New Mexico GLBTQ Centers of New Mexico. For more information on these and other Pride-related events, interested parties are encouraged to visit the website at www.SouthernNMPride.org.
The Festival on June 16th will begin with a walking Parade through the Downtown Mall at 10am, led by Grand Marshall Sharna Horn, Coodinator for the Sexual and Gender Diversity Resource Center at NMSU. The parade will be immediately followed by the Pride Awards, given to those who have made a significant contribution to the betterment of the GLBTQ community in Southern New Mexico, through their volunteerism, activism and/or community involvement.
Southern New Mexico Pride Festival 2012 is sponsored in part by Save Mart, Families and Youth Inforporated, Hotel Encanto, GLBTQ Centers of New Mexico, PFLAG Las Cruces, The Doña Ana Arts Council, Las Cruces Convention & Visitor’s Bureau, Pride Guide New Mexico and Lisa Willman. For more information, visit www.SouthernNMPride.org.