Livestock, Live Demonstrations, Gardens and the First Fiber Fiesta!
A visit to the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Museum is sure to deliver hours of fun and lots of learning. Visitors, young and old alike will enjoy the live demonstrations such as blacksmithing, quilting or water dowsing. And the interactive museum brings to life long history of farming and ranching in New Mexico. The livestock tours are always one of the highlights of any visit to the Museum.
The livestock is a big reason why the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum is like no other, and the animals raised are of the highest quality.
The Museum features seven different breeds of beef cattle – Angus, Brahman, Brangus, Charolais, Corriente, Hereford, and Longhorn – as well as dairy cows (Holstein), horses, goats, and a donkey. There also are two breeds of sheep (Navajo-Churro and Debouillet) and two types of goats (Boer and Angora).
American Alliance of Museum accreditation reviewers were especially impressed with the Museum’s livestock program, calling it a “national model.”
“All aspects of the Museum’s living collection program are excellent,” the reviewers said in their summary. “From our perspective, this aspect of the Museum is a regional and perhaps national model that is strengthened and supported by the knowledge and skill of the well-trained staff. The housing and care of the animals and the specific goals of the live animal collection and its public education and interpretive programs directly supports the mission of the institution.”
There usually is anywhere from 60 to 80 head of cattle at the Museum and all are registered.
“We run the program as a pure-bred cattle operation,” said Livestock Manager Greg Ball. “We try to raise the best possible individuals that we can.”
Three of the prized animals in the current collection are Angus bulls, all born and raised at the Museum. Spring is a favorite time of year to see the animals because of the young calves and lambs.
Museum visitors can walk across the Historic Green Bridge to the “South 20” portion of the campus to see the animals on their own, or take a cart ride with a docent. It’s not uncommon for visitors to get to watch members of the livestock management staff on horseback working with the animals.
The livestock staff recently completed a new general purpose barn that is located in the grazing pasture.
One of the Museum’s most popular programs is the Parade of Breeds, which is held periodically. Visitors can sit in shaded bleachers at the Round Pen, while examples of each breed of beef cattle are brought in and their origin and characteristics are discussed.
Museum’s First Fiber Fiesta – June 22
Come enjoy seeing and learning about the beautiful creations that are produced locally by fiber artists on June 22 at the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces.
Fiber Fiesta demonstrations for this first-annual event include spinning, knitting, felting, quilting, Colcha embroidery, tatting, bobbin lacing, several types of weaving, and contemporary coiled basketry. Tye Lightfoot of the USDA Southwestern Cotton Ginning Research Lab will do cotton ginning demos with mini gins.
Local fiber groups will have informational booths and demonstrations. Some of the organizations include the Mesilla Valley Weavers Guild, the Las Cruces Chapter of the Embroiderers Guild of America, Lin Bentley Keeling, and CK Fiber Arts Studio.
The documentary video, “Colcha Circle: A Stitch in Northern New Mexico Culture,” will be shown in the Museum’s theater as well as informational talks. The day also includes food trucks (Nacho Mommas and Fresh Made Food), and a craft activity for the children from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Museum’s Health and Fitness Expo -June 22
Also make plans to attend the Health & Fitness Expo, which also will be at the Museum on the same day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Admission to the Fiber Fiesta (10 a.m. to 4 p.m.), the Health Expo, and all of the regular Museum offerings on this day are free.
The Health & Fitness Expo is sponsored by the Mountain View Regional Medical Center, Electronic Caregiver, and the Las Cruces Sun-News. The expo features informational booths and much more.
The Farm & Ranch Museum is located at 4100 Dripping Springs Road.
Admission: $5 for adults, $4 for Senior Citizens, $3 for Children 4-17 Children under 4 are free.
Museum Hours: 9am-5pm Monday – Saturday, Noon to 5 pm on Sundays
Fiber Fiesta -June 22
Health & Fitness Expo – June 22
For more information about the Fiber Fiesta, call (575) 522-4100.