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The Burning of Zozobra

Posted by Edith Claiborne on

The Burning of Zozobra ("Old Man Gloom") takes place every year in Santa Fe, New Mexico, on the Friday before Labor Day as a fiery and exciting kick-off  to the city's annual Fiestas. Zozobra is a giant animated wood and cloth structure, one of the world's largest functioning marionettes, able to wave its arms and move its mouth to growl ominously at the approach of its fate. His arch-enemy, the Fire Spirit Dancer, dressed in a flowing red costume and headdress, is armed with a pair of blazing torches to seal Zozobra's fate. The Burning of Zozobra 2016, set for Sept. 2, will mark...

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Chile Season is Here!

Posted by Edith Claiborne on

Chile roasting season has begun here in New Mexico, and the wonderful aroma of roasting chiles is in the air. New Mexico's Hatch green chile is famous around the world. Learn what makes it so special in this delightful video from VisitNewMexico.  

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Symbols of Texas

Posted by Alyssa Clevelle on

Every region has symbols which clearly define it and encapsulate its personality. These products, flora, fauna, and geography represent its history, people, and values to the world. The American Southwestern states are no different Here are a few of the more commonly recognized symbols of Texas. Be sure to check the links at the end of this article for even more symbols. Some of them may surprise you! The Lone Star Flag It flew above the Republic of Texas starting in 1839, and followed Texas into Statehood. The flag's colors stand for bravery (red), purity (white), and loyalty (blue). The...

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The Saguaro Cactus: Defining a Region

Posted by Alyssa Clevelle on

When one thinks of the American Southwest, one will almost certainly conjure images of cacti. In fact, cacti & the Southwest are nearly synonymous. And when many non-Southwesterners think of cacti, there seems to be one that springs to mind most often: the Saguaro cactus. In actuality, the Saguaro cactus is less readily seen than the plethora of other Southwest cacti. Located only in the Sonoran desert, this magnificent cactus can be found in Arizona and Mexico, excluding the rest of the region from its natural habitat. (A few stragglers are also identified in southeast California.) The cacti found in...

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Meet the Real Roadrunner

Posted by Alyssa Clevelle on

The roadrunner is an iconic, desert bird which lives throughout the American Southwest and Mexico. Forever immortalized by classic cartoons, roadrunners can be visually disappointing for those encountering them the first time. The ground birds are brown and black with white streaks, although their head crests may elicit some familiarity. Once proper expectations are set, spotting the birds can be very exciting. Roadrunners are especially adapted to life in the desert. The usually solitary bird can reduce its internal temperature to compensate for the heat of the day, as well as reduce its body temperature and metabolic rate during cold,...

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