Halloween parades in New Mexico borrow from the traditions on both sides of the border and even some Medieval activities. It makes sense that Day of the Dead celebrations be combined with Halloween festivities due to the Latin influences at the Mexican border and the Mexican-American population in the state.
Día de los Muertos Part of New Mexico Halloween
The celebration of the Día de los Muertos is rooted in both indigenous Mexican people and Catholic religious workers. It honors and celebrates the Dead. In the last few decades, celebrations of the Day of the Dead have increased in popularity and provide the opportunity for families to gather and remember the departed. Food like sugar skulls and papel picado and decorations like paper flowers and skeleton puppets are part of New Mexico Halloween celebrations.
Halloween Pumpkins Launched In Medieval Fashion In New Mexico
Pumpkin Chunkin seems to be a growing sport, and New Mexico is one of the states leading the way. The catapult launching of pumpkins for distance is a competition that has become serious and has worked its way in to some Halloween events. The pumpkins launched are between eight and ten pounds. The record distance was set in 2008 at 4,483.51 feet. Launched by trebuchets, rock-throwing wooden machines as seen in various movies like Lord of the Rings, the pumpkins are catapulted through the air. The machines got their start in the Middle Ages as weapons of war, and now they’re throwing fruit.
New Mexico Halloween Parades by City
If you know of any others, please leave information about it in our comments section. We will verify and add to our list.
Albuquerque 16th Annual Halloween Balkan Bash
Oct 27, 2012 7 to 10 pm Winning Coffee Company
Celebrate Halloween Balkan-style with the exciting and exotic music of ‘Goddess of Arno’. The Halloween Balkan Bash has dance tunes and traditional songs from Albania, Macedonia, Serbia, Greece, Bulgaria and Hungary. This Halloween Balkan Bash also features holiday decorations and a costume contest.
Albuquerque Day of the Dead/Día de Muertos
Oct 28, 2012 1 – 4 pm Museum of International Folk Art
While Halloween costumes are not required, they do add to the event. Decorate sugar skulls, make muertos nichos (memory boxes), sample Pan de Muerto, (Sweet bread or “bread of the dead”), enjoy live music by Las Flores Del Valle, a dance performance by Los Ninos de Santa Fe y Compania, and a the film Todos Santos: La Fiesta de las Almas in Candelaria Bolivia by the Metamorfosis Documentary Project. New Mexico residents with proper ID gain free admission.
Albuquerque Perry Meadows Haunt
October 2012 Hours TBA Rio Rancho
This Halloween Haunted House in Rio Rancho was closed last year. This year the haunted house is back. It is a unique non-profit, accepting food donations, and is the first haunted house attraction to open in New Mexico that is free. It attracts over 250 visitors an hour! A walk thru haunted house and cemetery should be enjoyed in costume to add to the effect.
Chaparral Forbidden Sanctum
October 27-31, 2012 8 pm – 12 am
There are extreme scares at this well-known haunted sanctum. So grab your own Halloween costume and see if you can survive what many in Albuquerque call the ultimate haunted house attraction. There are age limits, so it is not for the toddlers. Best of all, this Halloween treat is free. No one under the age of 17 is allowed without a guardian as the Sanctum has props and displays that are hand made and are original pieces of work. Donations are accepted to keep this tradition going, so come and enjoy the frights and help a creative member of the community.
Estancia Pumpkin Chunkin Contest And Parade
Oct 20, 2012 10:30 am Parade
Back in 1995, local farmers from Estancia started a pumpkin chucking contest – knows as chunkin – where the catapults are serious and people come from worldwide to compete. Contestants attempt to beat records, and anyone who sets one in Estancia has the chance to compete in the nationals. The day’s festivities include a Halloween costume parade, a pie eating and pumpkin seed spitting contest, and the crowning of the Pumpkin Chunkin Festival Prince and Princess. This one is quite the event with options for costumes plentiful; beyond the usual, there is the Medieval aspect of the catapults. At the Estancia Pumpkin Chunkin Festival, pumpkins fly from all sorts of contraptions including air cannons, catapults, hurlers and trebuchets.
Farmington Main Street Safe Treats
Oct 31, 2012 4 – 6 pm Downtown
The Historic Downtown Farmington wants the community to feel safe as they Trick or Treat along Main Street. This Halloween activity is coordinated by the Farmington Downtown Association and sponsored by Parks, Recreation, and Cultural Affairs, making it a community event. So grab the family and your Halloween costumes and join the crowd as they parade through the local businesses downtown.
Farmington Munchkin Masquerade Carnival
Oct 26, 2012 5:30 – 7:30 pm Recreation Center
This Halloween event for ages 10 and under is held at the Farmington Recreation Center. Games, prizes, pumpkins, and a costume contest for different age categories creates the magic.
Las Cruces Southern New Mexico Pride Halloween Ball
Oct 26, 2012 9 pm Alameda House
The New Mexico Pride Halloween Ball at Alameda House in Las Cruces is open to all ages – and sexual orientations. Balls around Halloween always bring out formal exotic Halloween costumes, so join sponsors Southern New Mexico Pride and enter to win one of the prizes for best costume.
Las Cruces Temple Baptist Church Trunk or Treat and Carnival
Oct 31, 2012 7 to 8 pm Temple Baptist Church
Fun and safe trunk or treating to celebrate Halloween includes a carnival and Halloween treats with cake walks and face painting. So grab your young vampires in costume or parade your ghouls and goblins to this fun family Halloween event.
Sycamore Park Boogieman Ball
Oct 31, 2012 7 – 9 pm Community Center
When you are putting on your Halloween costume, don’t forget the dancing shoes to go boogie and enjoy the Halloween celebrations at Sycamore Park Community Center. This is a great free event that will also have trick-or-treating. Work some magic with a couple’s costume and make a father-daughter dance a fun activity.
Taos Halloween At The Harwood Museum Of Art
Oct 27, 2012 Regular Hours Harwood Museum Of Art
Halloween at the Harwood Museum of Art is the place for families in Taos to start their spooktacular celebrations. The Harwood is a free event where Halloween costumed children can check out the many skeletons and bones included in the museum’s exhibits and make their own Halloween crafts, including masks and puppets, at the museum’s kid-friendly art studio.