New Mexico State Parks Calendar of Events
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36 Events in December
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Saturday, December 2
11:00 AM - 12:00 PM
Living Desert
Holiday Bells
Listen to beautiful holiday music performed on handbells by The Touch of Joy Ringers. This program is a great way to start the holiday season.
Fees: No Fee
Contact: Kathryn Law (575) 887-5516



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Saturday, December 2
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Saturday, December 2
10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bosque Storytelling Hour
Join us for storytelling under the cottonwood tree at The Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Bosque Storytelling Hour, presented by Dianne Rossbach, will be offered at 10:30 am on the first Saturday of each month (weather permitting) at the Outdoor Education Classroom in the Native Plant Garden. This series offers multi-cultural natural history stories adapted for the tall and the small. Children should always bring their own adult, so they can enjoy the fun, too. Dianne?s interpretive style includes participative stories and songs, particularly enjoyed by those aged 5 to 10 years old. Park day use fee of $3 or display of applicable permit applies.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Saturday, December 2
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Sunday, December 3
03:00 PM - 04:00 PM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Sunday, December 3
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Saturday, December 9
02:00 PM - 04:00 PM
Cerrillos Hills
Lew Wallace
Territorial Governor and Ben Hur author Lew Wallace held a mine claim in the Cerrillos Hills. In costume and character, Dr. Noel Pugach will share the story of how Wallace made his fortune. Co-sponsored by the New Mexico Humanities Council & the Department of Cultural Affairs, this program is made possible by the generous support of The Amigos de Cerrillos Hills State Park
Fees: donations welcome
Contact: park staff 505-474-0196



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Saturday, December 9
05:00 PM - 08:00 PM
Elephant Butte Lake
Luminaria Beachwalk & Floating.....
Full event title: "Holiday Luminaria Beachwalk and Floating Light Parade". Entry fees will apply. 3000 Luminarias, 25 Host Campfires, Floating Light Parade, Caroling, Santa Claus, Plus FREE Hayrides, Hot Cider, Chili and Posole. Sponsored by Friends of Elephant Butte Lake State Park and partially funded by City of Elephant Butte Lodgers Tax AND any donations made will benefit "Make a Wish Foundation". Anyone interested in participating in the Floating Lights Parade must RSVP with Will Dooley at 575-894-2041 or will.dooley@lagorico.com.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Jeff Spencer 575-744-5923



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Saturday, December 9
08:00 AM - 05:00 PM
Heron Lake
Boating Safety Education Courses
This free course provides students the opportunity to interact with an experienced boating instructor. All motorboat, personal watercraft and sailboat operators born on or after January 1, 1989, must complete a boating safety course to operate on New Mexico waters. (This means operators - even those 13 years and younger being supervised by an adult on board.) Students must score 80 percent on the closed book exam to receive their Boater Education Card. For information or reservations, call (575) 588-7470- ask for Officer Sedillo.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Officer Sedillo 575 588 7470



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Saturday, December 9
12:00 PM - 08:00 PM
Leasburg Dam
Turning Back The Sun - Solstice
Celebrate Winter Solstice with us at Leasburg Dam State Park and enjoy live demonstration of traditional Pueblo adobe oven bread baking (get to sample it too), Pueblo Indian social dances, during the day. Right before sunset, gather around several warm campfires in an outdoor amphitheatre and enjoy traditional Coyote/Winter stories from Dine, Apache, Pueblo and Blackfeet Peoples. These stories can only be told during the winter months. ** Get to sample real Buffalo stew and oven baked Pueblo bread and hot chocolate - as long as they last. Immediately after, enjoy the quality night sky of Leasburg Dam State Park and look through several types of telescopes - including our observatory's 16 inch research grade telescope. Several volunteer astronomers from the ASLC-Astronomy Society of Las Cruces will be on hand to assist and answer questions.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Alex Mares 575-524-4068



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Saturday, December 9
01:00 PM - 03:00 PM
Living Desert
Holidays With the Animals
Children enjoy activities and make holiday cards and treats for their favorite Living Desert animals. Watch the raven, blue jay, bear, porcupine, and bison with their treats. There is no fee to attend the activiies in the Visitor Center but regular admission fees apply to enter the zoo.
Fees: See above
Contact: Kathryn Law (575) 887-5516



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Saturday, December 9
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Saturday, December 9
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Saturday, December 9
10:30 AM - 12:00 PM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Nature Walk
Enjoy a leisurely exploration of the Middle Rio Grande Bosque ecosystem with one of the RGNC volunteer naturalists. Search for signs of animal life and discover how the Bosque and the Rio Grande provide habitat. The walk is about 1 1/2 hours long; the mostly flat, sandy trail is just under 1 mile. We recommend that you wear a hat and sunscreen and bring a water bottle. This walk is appropriate for adults and children. Meet your guide just west of the RGNCSP parking lot at the bench and bulletin board. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park permit applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Saturday, December 9
05:00 PM - 06:30 PM
Rockhound
Luminaries Night
Over 1,000 luminarias light the visitor center, native gardens and labyrinth and roadway. Make this a part of your holiday traditions. Hot cider and cookies will be served.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Robert V. Apodaca 575-546-6182



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Saturday, December 9
08:00 AM - 05:00 PM
Ute Lake
3D Archery Shoot
Friends of Ute Lake will be hosting a 3D Archery Shoot. There is a $10 fee for 1st round shooting and $5 for 2nd round shooting.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: State Park Office 575-487-2284



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Sunday, December 10
03:00 PM - 04:00 PM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Sunday, December 10
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Wednesday, December 13
10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Leasburg Dam
Discovering the Camino Real at LDSP
Join a Ranger led hike to see why Juan de Onate and his party left a lush and abundant river valley to begin a treacherous trek of death - The Jornada Del Muerto. See first hand, and learn about the very same landscape he and his party gazed upon in 1598. Be surprised with some of the fact and fiction about the people, places, things and the man himself - Don Juan de Onate that made up the now famous colonizing expedition of 1598 that changes this part of the Southwest forever. The hike is moderate in difficulty and is approximately 2.5 miles in total length. Experience two different ecosystems and learn about efforts to restore the area's natural environment to conditions very similar to what was seen by the Spanish and Mexican Indian expedition.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Alex Mares 575-524-4068



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Saturday, December 16
05:30 PM - 07:45 PM
City of Rocks
Star Party
Visit City of Rocks State Park for a night of star and plant gazing through our 14 inch Mead telescope at our monthly Star Party. If Weather Permitting.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Gabriel Medrano 575-536-2800



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Saturday, December 16
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Saturday, December 16
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Saturday, December 16
05:00 PM - 08:30 PM
Sugarite Canyon
Christmas on the Chicorica
Get in the holiday spirit and stroll at Sugarite Canyon State Park by the light of 1,500 luminarias. Enjoy Christmas carols, munch on cookies and peek through the park telescope. And don't forget to visit Santa!
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: park staff 575-445-5607



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Sunday, December 17
11:00 AM - 01:00 PM
Cerrillos Hills
Winter Hike
Mild daytime temperatures and soft light make it the perfect time to explore the park on this guided hike.
Fees: $5 per vehicle
Contact: park staff 505-474-0196



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Sunday, December 17
03:00 PM - 04:00 PM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Sunday, December 17
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Saturday, December 23
10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Leasburg Dam
Discovering the Camino Real at LDSP
Join a Ranger led hike to see why Juan de Onate and his party left a lush and abundant river valley to begin a treacherous trek of death - The Jornada Del Muerto. See first hand, and learn about the very same landscape he and his party gazed upon in 1598. Be surprised with some of the fact and fiction about the people, places, things and the man himself - Don Juan de Onate that made up the now famous colonizing expedition of 1598 that changes this part of the Southwest forever. The hike is moderate in difficulty and is approximately 2.5 miles in total length. Experience two different ecosystems and learn about efforts to restore the area's natural environment to conditions very similar to what was seen by the Spanish and Mexican Indian expedition.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Alex Mares 575-524-4068



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Saturday, December 23
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Saturday, December 23
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Sunday, December 24
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Wednesday, December 27
10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Leasburg Dam
Discovering the Camino Real at LDSP
Join a Ranger led hike to see why Juan de Onate and his party left a lush and abundant river valley to begin a treacherous trek of death - The Jornada Del Muerto. See first hand, and learn about the very same landscape he and his party gazed upon in 1598. Be surprised with some of the fact and fiction about the people, places, things and the man himself - Don Juan de Onate that made up the now famous colonizing expedition of 1598 that changes this part of the Southwest forever. The hike is moderate in difficulty and is approximately 2.5 miles in total length. Experience two different ecosystems and learn about efforts to restore the area's natural environment to conditions very similar to what was seen by the Spanish and Mexican Indian expedition.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Alex Mares 575-524-4068



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Saturday, December 30
10:00 AM - 12:30 PM
Leasburg Dam
Discovering the Camino Real at LDSP
Join a Ranger led hike to see why Juan de Onate and his party left a lush and abundant river valley to begin a treacherous trek of death - The Jornada Del Muerto. See first hand, and learn about the very same landscape he and his party gazed upon in 1598. Be surprised with some of the fact and fiction about the people, places, things and the man himself - Don Juan de Onate that made up the now famous colonizing expedition of 1598 that changes this part of the Southwest forever. The hike is moderate in difficulty and is approximately 2.5 miles in total length. Experience two different ecosystems and learn about efforts to restore the area's natural environment to conditions very similar to what was seen by the Spanish and Mexican Indian expedition.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Alex Mares 575-524-4068



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Saturday, December 30
10:00 AM - 11:00 AM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



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Saturday, December 30
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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Sunday, December 31
03:00 PM - 04:00 PM
Oliver Lee
Ranch House Tour
In the early 19th century, Oliver Lee was a prominent rancher and politician: serving as a senator and state representative. The reconstructed house, originally built in 1893, features furnishings and displays that provide a window into the history or early ranching in the Tularosa Basin. Meet at the visitor center. You will drive your own vehicle, following a staff member to the Ranch House about 1.25 miles away.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Kate German (575) 437-8284



Add to Itinerary

Sunday, December 31
08:30 AM - 10:00 AM
Rio Grande Nature Ctr.
Bird Walk
Join us for a guided Bird Walk at the Rio Grande Nature Center State Park. Volunteer Naturalists will lead you as you discover the amazing birds at the park. Bring your binoculars for a close-up view. Participants are asked to whisper during the walk. Meet your guide at the northeast corner of the parking lot, near the viewing wall. Groups, please contact the park. Individual registration is not required. Park day use fee ($3) or display of valid park pass applies. Call for additional information.
Fees: Regular Entrance Fee
Contact: Front Desk (505)344-7240



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