Cowboy Days returns for 19th year with new events

Feb 14, 2018

Cowboy Days returns to the New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces for the 19th year with a new activity, and a homecoming performance by country music’s Josh Grider.

Cowboy Days is March 3-4. The fun is from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sunday. Admission is $5 for everyone 5 and older. There are no discounts or passes.

The popular festival is the museum’s annual tribute to the state’s ranching heritage.

“Cowboy Days is the museum’s biggest event of the year,” said Museum Director Mark Santiago. “We have a variety of activities and entertainment for the entire family, and we add something new each year.”

The new activity is Sheep to Shawl. At 10 a.m. on Saturday, one of the museum’s Debouillet sheep will be sheared. The wool will be carded, and then spun by three demonstrators. A weaver will then use the yarn from the wool to create a shawl that will be raffled ($1 each). The entire process should take about four hours and the activity will take place inside the museum’s Sheep & Goat Barn.

The Borderland Pistoleros Cowboy Mounted Shooting group will have competition at the museum’s Roping Arena each day with a session in the morning from 10:30 to 12 and one in the afternoon from 3 to 5.

Another popular activity involving livestock is the Parade of Breeds, which takes place twice each day (12 and 2). The different breeds of beef cattle are brought in to the round and guests can learn about their different characteristics and origin.

Demonstrations on both days include chuck wagon cooking (with free samples), blacksmithing, wood carving, weaving, and the Back Country Horsemen. Several living history characters from the museum and Fort Selden Historic Site will be interacting with the public, as well.

Pony rides for kids ($5), mechanical bull rides ($3), mini-train rides ($3), and stagecoach rides (donation) are offered both days. The pony rides are from 9-10 and 12-3 each day, while the others are continuous. There are also free children’s craft and gold-panning activities.

Enchantment Historical Productions performs a gunfight re-enactment each day at 11 a.m. The shows, which feature authentic firearms with blanks, portray both historical events and dime novel drama. The group also produces The American Fashion Show, illustrating the evolution of fashion from colonial times through the 20th Century, and, “Daniel F. Beatty: Purveyor of Pump Organs, Clocks, and Sewing.” Skits will be in the museum’s Theater each day.

The cowboy musical performers include Eddy Harrison, Kenny Arroyos, Voz Vaqueros and Tom Foster Morris. Ollie Reed and Ralph Estes of the Western Writers of America also will be on hand to talk about their books and sell and sign copies.

The Cowboy Days CASI (Chili Appreciation Society International) Chili Cook-Off, which debuted last year, will return for both days. Tasting for the public is from 2-3 p.m. on Saturday, and from 1-2 p.m. on Sunday (or until the chili runs out), and the cost for the samples is $5. The money raised on Saturday will benefit the Friends of the Museum, and the funds raised on Sunday benefit ACTion Program for Animals.

About 20 competitors from New Mexico and Texas are expected for the sanctioned chili cook-off, and Bill Pierson from Illionis, CASI senior referee, will be here to participate.

Grider, whose new album “Good People” debuts on March 2, will host an “album release show” and dance at 7 p.m. on March 3. Tickets for the concert can be purchased at the door, or at https://tickets.holdmyticket.com/tickets/304177. Tickets are $19.90, and children 10 and under receive free admission.

“We are going to have an old school dance and concert at museum in conjunction with Cowboy Days,” Grider said. “There will be a dance floor, some seating, cold beer (if you care to), and kids under 10 are free. I feel like these days concert experiences can A) be so expensive and B) so restrictive as far as age limits, start times, etc. I want this show to be accessible for anyone that wants to come listen to some country music. Las Cruces is my hometown, and we are going to have a great night. I'll sign autographs and take pictures with anybody that cares to hang around after the show.”

Days
10:00 am – 5:00 pm
19th Annual Cowboy Days

March 3-4, 2018

Admission is $5 for everyone 5 and older

Saturday, March 3
9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Ongoing activities: Chuck wagon cooking, the CASI Chili Cook-Off, children’s activities, food & craft vendors, plant sale, living history characters from the Museum and Fort Selden Historic Site, blacksmith demonstrations, wood-carving demonstrations, weaving demonstrations, panning for gold activity, Western Writers of America, and the Back Country Horsemen of America.

9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.: Miniature train rides on the South 20 ($3).
9-10 a.m.: Pony rides on the South 20 ($5).
9 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Sewing demo in the lobby (intermittent).
9 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Saddle & Tack talk in the Horse & Cattle Barn (intermittent).
9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.: Mechanical bull rides at the Pavilion on the South 20 ($3).
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Sheep to Shawl program in the Sheep & Goat Barn.
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Laundress & family life demo on the South 20 (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Butter making demo & living history on the South 20 (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 4 p.m.: Woodworking demo on the South 20 (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 2 p.m.: Green Bridge living history on the bridge (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.: Branding talk on the South 20, next to the chuck wagon (intermittent).
10- 11 a.m.: Musician Eddy Harrison performs in the Courtyard.
10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Borderland Pistoleros Cowboy Mounted Shooting in the Roping Arena.
11-11:40 a.m.: Old West Thunder gunfight re-enactment in the Heritage Garden.
11 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Stagecoach rides in front of the Bruce King Building (donations).
11 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Voz Vaqueros singers in the Courtyard.
11:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Author Ollie Reed in the Theater.
12-1 p.m.: Parade of Breeds in the Round Pen.
12-1 p.m.: Musician Kenny Arroyos in the Courtyard.
12-3 p.m.: Pony rides on the South 20 ($5).
12:30-1:30 p.m.: American Fashion Show in the Theater.
1-2 p.m.: Musician Tom Foster Morris performs in the Courtyard.
1-3 p.m.: Tea party living history in the Dairy Barn (intermittent).
1:30-2 p.m.: Author Ollie Reed in the Theater.
2-3 p.m.: Parade of Breeds in the Round Pen.
2-3 p.m.: CASI Chili Cook-Off tasting for the public ($5).
2-3 p.m.: Musician Eddy Harrison in the Courtyard.
2-2:45 p.m.: Author Ralph Estes in the Theater.
2:15-2:55 p.m.: Old West Thunder gunfight re-enactments in the Heritage Garden.
3-5 p.m.: Borderland Pistoleros Cowboy Mounted Shooting in the Roping Arena.
3-4 p.m.: Musician Tom Foster Morris in the Courtyard.
4-5 p.m.: Daniel F. Beatty: Purveyor of Pump Organs, Clocks & Sewing in the Theater.
4-4:45 p.m.: Musician Kenny Arroyos in the Courtyard.
7-10 p.m.: Josh Grider’s “Good People” Album Release Concert & Dance in the Tortugas Room. ($19.90 at www.joshgrider.com).

Sunday, March 4
10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Ongoing activities: Chuck wagon cooking, children’s activities, the CASI Chili Cook-Off, food & craft vendors, plant sale, living history characters from the Museum and Fort Selden Historic Site, blacksmith demonstrations, wood-carving demonstrations, weaving demonstrations, panning for gold activity, Western Writers of America, and the Back Country Horsemen of America.

10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.: Miniature train rides on the South 20 ($3).
10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m.: Mechanical bull rides at the Pavilion on the South 20 ($3).
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Living history with Fray Lorenzo in the Heritage Gallery (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Saddle & Tack talk in the Horse & Cattle Barn (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Windmill talk at the big windmill (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Ancient corn grinding demo at the Pavilion (intermittent).
10 a.m. to 3 p.m.: Woodworking demo on the South 20 (intermittent).
10-11 a.m.: Musician Eddy Harrison performs in the Courtyard.
10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.: Pony rides on the South 20 ($5).
11 a.m. to 5 p.m.: Stagecoach rides in front of the Bruce King Building (donations).
11-11:40 a.m.: Old West Thunder gunfight re-enactments in the Heritage Garden.
11 a.m.-12 p.m.: Author Ollie Reed in the Theater.
11 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Voz Vaqueros singers in the Courtyard.
11 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.: Branding talk on the South 20, near the chuck wagon (intermittent).
11:30 a.m. to 12 p.m.: Author Stephen Zimmer in the Theater.
12-12:40 p.m.: Old West Thunder gunfight re-enactments in the Heritage Garden.
12-1 p.m.: Parade of Breeds at the Round Pen.
12-1 p.m.: Musician Kenny Arroyos performs in the Courtyard.
12-12:30 p.m.: Author Ralph Estes in the Theater.
1-2 p.m.: CASI Chili Cook-Off tasting for the public ($5).
1-2 p.m.: American Fashion Show in the Theater.
1-1:45 p.m.: Musician Tom Foster Morris performs in the Courtyard.
1:30-3 p.m.: Pony rides on the South 20 ($5).
1:45-2:30 p.m.: Singer Eddy Harrison performs in the Courtyard.
2-3 p.m.: Parade of Breeds at the Round Pen.
2-3:30 p.m.: Laundress & family life demo on the South 20 (intermittent).
2:30 p.m.: Green Bridge living history on the bridge.
2:30-3:15 p.m.: Musician Tom Foster Morris performs in the Courtyard.
3-4:30 p.m.: Borderland Pistoleros Cowboy Mounted Shooting in the Roping Arena.
3:15-4 p.m.: Musician Kenny Arroyos performs in the Courtyard.
3:30-4:30 p.m.: Daniel F. Beatty: Purveyor of Pump Organs, Clocks & Sewing in the Theater.

Schedule is subject to change

Schedule subject to change

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For information contact Craig Massey at craig.massey@state.nm.us.