Albuquerque Journal

Chile festival in Pueblo, Colo.

Pueblo, Colo., hypes its own piquant pepper crop with a three-day festival that also showcases the city

- BY GLEN ROSALES FOR THE JOURNAL

It’s not much of a secret — at least in New Mexico — that the Hatch Valley lays claim to being the home to the finest chile peppers.

But the Pueblo, Colo. area has been trying for some time to make inroads on that claim and even celebrates its own fiery pepper with a harvest festival similar to the Hatch Chile Festival.

Pueblo’s Chile & Frijoles Festival (festival.pueblocham­ber.org) on Sept. 22-24 is a three-day homage to pinto beans and spicy peppers with nonstop entertainm­ent in the city’s downtown district.

A farmer’s market, salsa showdown and jalpeño eating contest are some of the events on tap throughout the weekend for folks who want to judge the neighbor’s chile versus the local variety.

There is far more to Pueblo, however, than chile and frijoles.

The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo (pueblorive­rwalk.org) covers 32 acres along the waterfront for a unique urban experience.

Tour boats drift lazily down the expanse as guides describe the history of the city, said Margaret Ward Masias, executive director of the Pueblo Downtown Associatio­n.

“And they also have gondolas for two people if you’d like something a little more romantic,” she said.

The Riverwalk itself is home to numerous displays of public art, ranging from Zebulon Pike eyeing the Front Range through a telescope to various birds and animals in lifelike poses.

Numerous restaurant­s are also within easy access of the Riverwalk.

Another interestin­g way to learn a bit about the history of the city is a visit to the Antoine Predock-designed Rawlings Library, which houses the Info Zone News Museum (pueblolibr­ary.org/

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 ?? COURTESY OF THE PUEBLO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE ?? The Pueblo Chile & Frijoles Festival pays homage to local staples peppers and pinto beans.
COURTESY OF THE PUEBLO CHAMBER OF COMMERCE The Pueblo Chile & Frijoles Festival pays homage to local staples peppers and pinto beans.
 ?? COURTESY OF THE HISTORIC ARKANSAS RIVERWALK OF PUEBLO. ?? The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo is a 32-acre urban park filled with artwork. Boat and gondola rides are popular attraction­s on the river.
COURTESY OF THE HISTORIC ARKANSAS RIVERWALK OF PUEBLO. The Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo is a 32-acre urban park filled with artwork. Boat and gondola rides are popular attraction­s on the river.
 ?? COURTESY OF PUEBLO.US ?? A 2003 Zebulon Pike sculpture by Ken Williams is one of many pieces of artwork along the Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo.
COURTESY OF PUEBLO.US A 2003 Zebulon Pike sculpture by Ken Williams is one of many pieces of artwork along the Historic Arkansas Riverwalk of Pueblo.
 ?? COURTESY OF THE PUEBLO LEVEE MURAL PROJECT ?? The three-mile Pueblo Levee Mural Project is certified by Guinness World Records as the longest painting.
COURTESY OF THE PUEBLO LEVEE MURAL PROJECT The three-mile Pueblo Levee Mural Project is certified by Guinness World Records as the longest painting.

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