Special Fall Festivals in Taos Sacred Placessam
Beginning in late September, the extreme natural beauty of Taos is only enhanced by a host of festivals that add a dimension of intellectual and cultural stimulation rare in a community this size.
Art, music, storytelling and access to Taos Pueblo, the oldest continuously inhabited structure in North America, make up just a few of the opportunities for residents and visitors alike to experience the region’s great beauty, and revel in the deeply authentic.
Now in its 36th year, The Taos Fall Arts Festival kicks off with its Arts & Crafts Fair September 24, 25 and 26 in Kit Carson Park. This year more than 80 vendors from Northern New Mexico will take part. The event is free, with gates open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day. Running concurrently through October 11 are three major Fall Arts Exhibitions, “Living Masters,” “Taos Invites,” and “Taos Open.” For the full slate of events visit www.taosfallarts.com.
On Sunday, September 26th, Society of the Muse of the Southwest (SOMOS) will present a very special evening with actor and Pulitzer Prize-winning playwright Sam Shepard. A long-time visitor to the region, Mr. Shepard will read from his latest book of short stories (one that even describes a visit to Taos), “Day Out of Days.” Tickets are just $20 in advance, $30 at the door with proceeds benefiting SOMOS’ Youth Mentorship Program. www.somostaos.org
One of Taos Pueblo’s most culturally significant and visually compelling feast days, San Geronimo, is held every year on September 30th. Foot races on the ancient racetrack begin in the early morning, and in the afternoon, sacred clowns climb a towering pole to celebrate the coming of Fall and the bounty of the harvest. The oldest continuously inhabited structures in North America, Taos Pueblo is a UNESCO World Heritage site and its San Geronimo Day is a singular Northern New Mexico event not to be missed. www.taospueblo.com
TAOS OFFERS A VARIETY OF FALL EVENTS
Now in its 27th year, The Taos Wool Festival takes place rain or shine October 2 and 3 in Kit Carson Park. Sheep, yak, rabbit, goats, alpacas, lamas, and even baby bison are just some of the critters that will be on display. This year, with the theme of “Earth’s Palette Natural Dye and Color,” workshops will run from September 26 to October 7 and include instruction in spinning, weaving, knitting, crocheting, felting, dyeing and other topics. Some 68 vendors will showcase regional fibers, art and accessories, and organizers expect 4,000 to 5,000 visitors to attend the free event. www.taoswoolfestival.org
Storytelling gets its due on October 16th when the Society of the Muse of the Southwest, (SOMOS) presents popular storytellers Bil Lepp, Cisco Guevara, Liz Manqual & Bob Kanegis, and local favorite Cipriano Vigil performing with son and daughter Cipriano P. and Felicita Piñon. Workshops and programs include “Getting Folks to Lie Well,” with Bill Lepp, a “Storyswap” sponsored by the Taos Public Library, and a “Storytelling Concert” that caps off the evening. For a full listing visit http://somostaos.net/
The Taos Chamber Music Group performs two concerts this fall on Saturday October 23 and Sunday October 24. Some of New Mexico’s finest musicians as well as performers from around the world will present familiar masterpieces by Mozart, Beethoven, Brahms, Schubert and Dvorak, as well as provocative contemporary compositions. For more information, visit www.taoschambermusicgroup.org.
On the last weekend of Taos’ fall festivals, the 28th annual Taos Mountain Balloon Rally will send up to 50 hot air balloons into the dazzling blue sky over Taos. While it may not be the biggest ballooning event in New Mexico, it surely takes place in one of the most scenic spots on earth. And flying over the Rio Grande Gorge can be the experience of a lifetime. www.taosballoonrally.com