This sign was out in front of a house just down the street.
Cute! On one hand, I wish I had thought of it. On the other, I wouldn't want people to get the wrong idea: "you'll never check out."
I’m having fun--come on along!
Albuquerque's biggest Christmas party, the 13th Annual Old Town Holiday Stroll, will take place on Friday, December 3, 2010. Old Town is located just north of Central Avenue between 19th Street and Rio Grande Boulevard NW. Old Town will be aglow with the light of thousands of luminarias from dusk throughout the evening.
Enjoy the entertainment from noon to 9:00 p.m. with dancers, singers and performers. At 6:00 p.m., the Albuquerque Fire Department Color Guard will raise the flag, accompanied by the National Anthem. The giant Christmas tree lighting ceremony begins at 6:15 at Plaza Don Luis on Romero Street NW, just west of San Felipe Church.
The children's Santa Claus parade takes place after the tree lighting ceremony, and Santa Claus will be in residence during the evening to hear children's wishes.
Parking is very limited. Taking a city bus or RapidRide bus to Old Town is highly recommended. Handicap parking and access is available.
If you're from out of town, stay at the Bottger Mansion of Old Town bed & breakfast. We have reserved parking spaces, and you'll be able to walk to all the Holiday Stroll festivities.
I’m having fun--come on along!
This controversy is ripe for discussion this time every year: in New Mexico, we use candles set in sand in paper bags as Christmas decorations. Are they farolitos or luminarias? Even within the state, people can't agree. It seems like from Albuquerque south, we call them luminarias while north of here they call them farolitos (literally, "little fires"). We're of the luminaria persuasion. After all, another tradition is a series of little bonfires along the road to "light the way for the Christ child." We think that those would be farolitos, right?
But you know what really annoys me? The new Febreze flameless "luminaries." Aw, come on! A "luminary" is a person, not a candle in a paper bag. Life is hard enough already--every time I try to type "luminaria," my spell checker automatically converts it to "luminary" and then I have to change it back again. Then Febreze comes out with this new concept and can't get the word right.
I looked it up in the Merriam Webster online dictionary: "luminary: a person of prominence or brilliant achievement." (Use in a sentence: "The dinner for the mayor was attended by many local luminaries.")
On the other hand, a luminaria is "a traditional Mexican Christmas lantern consisting of a candle set in sand inside a paper bag."
But what's really funny is that the Google ad just above the definition on both of these words was for "traditional luminaries. Use at parties, weddings, holidays. Wonderful on patios, RV's, walkways." This was for www.FlicLuminaries.com. They didn't get it right, either.
Whether one believes they're called farolitos or luminarias, Febreze is putting a whole new spin on the deal.
If you've never attended a Dia de los Muertos ("Day of the Dead") celebration, now is the time!
This year's Dia de los Muertos in Old Town begins at 6:00 p.m. on Saturday, November 7th, with the community parade that starts on the east side of Old Town (San Felipe Street) and around Old Town Plaza, ending at Poco a Poco Patio. There will be music, dancing, a community altar (called an ofrenda), a costume contest and art giveaways from 7:00 p.m. to 10:00 p.m.
Entertainment will feature the New Mexico Marimba Band, La Compania de Danza Xallitic, Mariachi Nuevo Mexico, and Wagogo World Music.
Old Town is north of Central Avenue, just east of Rio Grande Blvd.
And it's free!
The Halloween festivities just keep coming! On Saturday, October 31st, Dia del Dulce ("Day of Sweets") will be held in Old Town Albuquerque. (Old Town is just north of Central Avenue, east of Rio Grande Blvd.)
Events begin with trick-or-treating from 4:00 to 7:00 p.m. At 5:30 the pet parade and pet costume contest will take place at the gazebo, followed by the people costume contest and parade at 6:30 at Plaza Don Luis, just west of San Felipe Church.
A special presentation of "Thriller" will be performed on the gazebo at 7:00 by the Dance New Mexico Network.
On Friday night we took the "Trolley of Terror," a special tour for the Halloween season by ABQ Trolley and Tours of Old Town. It's 90 minutes of fun and haunted history, taking a special route through Albuquerque to highlight some of the haunted locations around town.
Riders participate in the fun by dressing in costume for the trip and answering Halloween or Albuquerque trivia questions to compete for prizes--there are some really nice prizes being given away, and everyone goes home with a goody bag. An 8-year-old Power Ranger won the costume contest on our tour. "Boom-Boom" more than filled out "her" sweater and had an interesting wig, but I think the mustache detracted a bit from the outfit!
Some of the locations on the tour included the Old Bernalillo County Courthouse, the Manuela Hernandez House in Martineztown, the Yale Cemetery (the oldest in Albuquerque), the Press Club and Memorial Hospital, a special stop inside the Albuquerque Railyard, and the Kimo Theater. There are 16 locations along the way, each with its own ghost story, as well as some unexpected spooky surprises.
Be prepared to learn some new vocabulary along the way, such as "house of negotiated affection" (wasn't practically every old house a brothel at one time or another?) and "pile erection" (when the hair on your neck stands up.
The tour is rated PG, but overall it's good, clean family fun--a real treat for Halloween. No tricks!
P.S. Another option is the Ghost Tour of Old Town. It's a really popular event at this time of year; tours are held every night at 8:00 p.m. and reservations are needed in advance. The Ghost Tour will continue into November this year.
I’m having fun--come on along!
Look what arrived in the mail today! The Watchmaker's Daughter remembered that our Christmas tree in the parlor is very Victorian, with pink, cream, rose and gold ornaments. She sent me this lovely winged key ornament for our tree.
Ironically, today is the day we took down all of our Christmas decorations, but I've stored it in the box of ornaments for the parlor tree for next year.
It was so nice getting a gift at the beginning of the year. I believe in omens, don't you? This would be a nice one.
Christmas is over for another year, and all that's left are the remains from Christmas breakfast: a sip of sparkling apple cider with Framboise raspberry liqueur and the pieces from Christmas crackers. We try to make Christmas breakfast a little more special, and Christmas crackers are very Victorian. Of course, everyone has to put on the gold crown that comes inside the cracker so we can take the required photos. Where else will you get to do that on Christmas morning?
It looks like one big tree, like the national Christmas tree at the White House or the tree at Rockefeller Center. But it's really 130 Christmas trees put into a huge frame. It takes them about three days using two cherry pickers to put this together. They start from the top, putting it together and decorating it as they go.
The official lighting is always at the Old Town Holiday Stroll, the first Friday of December.
It's comforting to see the giant Christmas tree standing as it has for the past decade. The tougher the times, the tighter we all hang onto our traditions.