First Saturday Fun in October
Let the state spotlight shine on Socorro County, as she hosts one of the busiest weekends ever in her storied history, now that the 16th Annual SocorroFest has joined the lineup of events for October 5-6, the legendary “first Saturday in October.”
The weekend culminates in a headliner concert featuring “Hotel California: A Salute to the Eagles” with free admission. SocorroFest is the newcomer to traditional “first Saturday in October” events, and the weekend schedule was arranged so locals and visitors alike have opportunity to partake of anything or everything from a sumptuous buffet featuring history, science and seasonal celebrations, including that of the annual ritual of chile-roasting.
This year’s SocorroFest offers three entertainment stages, a lowrider “Show and Shine” display, pet parade, music and food, and a green chile cook-off for charity.
SocorroFest joins other firstSaturday-in-October events, including:
Trinity Site, White Sands Missile Range, is open to the public, 8 AM to 2 PM.
Oktoberfest, the annual burger-brats-beer and entertainment festival at the Hammel Museum, sponsored by the Socorro County Historical Society is from 11 AM to 3 PM.
Socorro Train Gang display at the Hammel Museum is open.
First-Saturday VLA Open House and Guided Tours, start at 11 AM with a final tour at 5 PM.
And the First-Saturday Star Party is from 7 to 10 PM at Etscorn Observatory.
Among SocorroFest traditions is the annual T-shirt Design Contest. Rules are simple: Anyone with a visual idea of what SocorroFest means to them is welcome to enter.
And what do people do to celebrate the harvest? They celebrate with music, dancing and food with friends, family and neighbors, grateful for the camaraderie shared among diverse community groups. The winner gets $25 gift card plus bragging rights. Take your entries to the Heritage and Visitors Center at 217 Fisher Ave. before 4 PM on September 8.
Another thread in the tapestry that is SocorroFest has to do with recognizing and celebrating the 50th anniver- sary of the city’s status as the “Free State of Socorro.”
According to legend and memory, a group of community leaders and whatnot gathered in the basement of the Capitol Bar one fine evening in 1953. What came out of that informal gathering was the brilliant idea of seceding from the Union and establishing the Free State of Socorro.
Never mind that the idea was hardly original, having been launched strictly as a publicity stunt; still, the story did generate its share of publicity at the time, a high-water mark being subject of a feature article in a national weekly publication.
In retrospect, the idea readily and faithfully reflects the rebel nature of a town that boasts Elfego Baca as a sheriff, a hanging or three, desperados and heroes and what-not, all cast together in celebrating all that was and is Socorro County.
So join in the fun, and here is the schedule for the main stage at the Plaza gazebo starting at high noon: Cottonwood Kids, Rising Stars Dancers, Jeez Laweez, Gonzalo, Et Alia, Blue Monday, Hotel California. ●◊●