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Last Minute LocalDecember 19, 2014


Photo Op One: Photo with Santa @ Freedom Crossing

Get your photo taken with Santa in the Freedom Crossing Food Court, right next to the Marketplace area. Friday hours are 3pm to 6pm, Saturday hours are 10am to 6pm and Sunday hours are 12pm to 5pm.

The Outdoor Concert: Friday at the Fire featuring TrailerBand (outlaw country)

Join us every Friday night for an evening of music and fun at our beautiful outdoor fireplace. Bands play from 7pm – 9pm with DJ before and after. Our current schedule of entertainment for this free weekly event is listed below. Friday at the Fire is proudly sponsored by Western Technical College.


Photo Op Two: Photo with Santa @ Exploreum

Bring your cameras and your wish lists for a personal visit. Children receive a special treat. Santa will appear at the top of each hour during the museum’s operating hours. Saturday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Photo Op Three: Santa @ the Tram

The Wyler Aerial Tramway at Franklin Mountains State Park features an aerial cable car situated on 195.742 acres of rugged mountain and rock formations on the east side of the Franklin Mountains. Come and enjoy a beautiful view with Santa Claus.

The Posada: Annual Posadas Celebration and Luminaria Lighting Festival

The Annual Posadas Presentation is an important part of the Mexican Christmas celebration. The word posada means “inn” or “shelter” in Spanish, and this celebration recreate Mary and Joseph’s search for a place to stay in Bethlehem. The presentation will begin at Veterans Memorial Plaza in San Elizario. It will be followed by Live Music, the traditional Christmas Piñata ceremony and Matachin dancer presentation.

The Luminaria Lighting of over 5,000 luminarias in the San Elizario Historic District will take place shortly after sundown and remain lit throughout the evening. Traditional fare will be on hand. The 4th Annual Christmas Bicycle giveaway and Mr & Mrs Santa Claus will be onhand. Sponsored by the San Elizario Genealogy & Historical Society.

The Rim Rd. Tradition: 23rd Annual Navidad De La Fe Luminarias

The Christmas spirits of hope and giving will come alive when 4,000 luminarias (sand-filled paper bags with a candle) will be lit aglow at nightfall along El Paso’s Scenic Drive during the 23rd Annual Navidad de La Fe Luminarias.

Vehicles can enter Scenic Drive at Richmond Avenue (eastside of the mountain) beginning at 6 p.m. Cash donations to help feed El Paso families in need are also welcomed. Checks can be made out to “Centro de Salud Familiar La Fe” or to “La Fe.” For more information: (915) 545-7190. Event Gates Open From 6 p.m. to 10 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014. Traffic will enter Scenic Drive at Richmond Avenue and head westbound in a single lane. Vehicles will exit Scenic Drive at Rim Road. Drivers are asked to dim their vehicle’s lights and proceed slowly and cautiously along the event route. For safety reasons, participants are asked to remain inside their vehicles at all times.


Choose from two great Christmas performances brought to you by UTEP

The Nutcracker: Presented by UTEP and the El Paso Youth Ballet. Step into a winter wonderland complete with spectacular scenery, elegant costumes and exquisite dancing. This is an evening of pure enchantment.

A Christmas Carol: Presented by the UTEP Department of Theatre and Dance. This animated retelling of Charles Dickens’ classic novel about a Victorian-era miser taken on a journey of self-redemption, courtesy of several mysterious Christmas apparitions is sure to get you in the holiday spirit!

About the Author

Visit El Paso

Welcome to the official Visit El Paso blog, your leading source for all things El Paso! Last Minute Local is posted every week and provides readers with a variety of "no planning necessary" ideas on things to see and do this weekend.

Last Minute LocalDecember 12, 2014


The Crazy Christmas Sweater Party!: Friday at the Fire featuring Chris Baker

Join us every Friday night for an evening of music and fun at our beautiful outdoor fireplace. Bands play from 7pm – 9pm with DJ before and after. Enjoy a performance from Chris Baker (acoustic rock, country) and a contest for the craziest Christmas sweater!


The Open House: Magoffin Home State Historic Site Visitor Center Grand Opening

Please join us for a joyful evening as the Magoffin Home comes alive with the sights and sounds of the season. See an art exhibit, enjoy music, dancing, food, and visit with Santa as we celebrate the opening of the Magoffin Home Visitors Center. Dress warmly for outside activities.

The Musical: Shrek

‘Once upon a time, there was a little ogre named Shrek…” And thus begins the tale of an unlikely hero who finds himself on a life-changing journey alongside a wisecracking Donkey and a feisty princess who resists her rescue. Throw in a short tempered bad guy, a cookie with an attitude, and over a dozen other fairy tale misfits, and you’ve got the kind of mess that calls for a real hero. Luckily, there’s one on hand…and his name is Shrek.


The Museum Celebration: North Pole at the Museum

North Pole at the Museum our annual holiday tradition will be held December 14. Mr. and Mrs. Claus will be in attendance taking affordable photographs by Toni Marie. Children holiday activities and door prizes.

About the Author

Visit El Paso

Welcome to the official Visit El Paso blog, your leading source for all things El Paso! Last Minute Local is posted every week and provides readers with a variety of "no planning necessary" ideas on things to see and do this weekend.

Que Pasa BorderlandDecember 11, 2014

About the Author

Kimber McCarden Foster

Join Destination El Paso's Kimber McCarden Foster every week for a run down on events happening right here in our community.

Tis the Season for ReflectionDecember 10, 2014

Happy Holidays to all from your park rangers at the Franklin Mountains State Park! The year 2014 is coming to a close and with that we begin reflecting on the achievements and successes of the past 12 months.

The mission of Texas State Parks is: Manage state parks and historic sites to conserve natural and cultural resources, provide recreational and educational opportunities, and foster an understanding of the diversity of Texas’ lands and heritage for all generations. We can only fulfill this mission if people visit our parks in the first place. Participation has noticeably increased in many of our programs, some of those being our Yoga on the Rocks, Peak Fitness Challenge Hikes, Women Only Hikes and our Guided Beginner’s Mountain Bike rides. We are elated that these programs have served our community in such a way as to introduce a new way of appreciating our mountains and the outdoors and growing an awareness of the importance of natural spaces for ourselves and our communities. One of our newest volunteers shared with us that he decided to sign up and give back as a result of one of our programs.

About one year ago, he participated in a program that gave him his first experience with the park; he’d lived in the area for some time, yet hadn’t visited the park once. After that first excursion, he said he couldn’t believe that he’d never visited before and has been hiking and riding throughout our mountains ever since. Now as he’s celebrating his one year of Franklin Mountains adventures, he has come to us to volunteer by maintaining and beautifying the park’s trails that he’s been able to enjoy. This story is not the only one of its kind; all of our volunteers have been moved by these mountains in one way or another, they all see the importance of our Texas State Parks mission and are helping to continue the efforts in fulfilling it! Throughout 2014, a boom in volunteerism resonated throughout the park, a surge that the park hadn’t experienced for some time. Our long-term, dedicated core of about 15 volunteers grew to 45 between January and December of this year; we’ve had over 30 new faces come to our park with a selfless sense of duty to give back to the mountains and our Franklin Mountains family continues to grow as we end the year.

The backbone of the Franklin Mountains State Park consists of about 9 rangers and the vision and leadership of our Superintendent, Dr. Cesar Mendez. A recurring reflection year after year is the incredible amount of accomplishments that are had for this almost 27,000 acre park through the teamwork of a very small group of people. Each park team member contributes a very unique set of skills, abilities and character or energy that truly allows this park to thrive and shine. Many of these people you’ll never see ~ while visitors are out exploring and enjoying the park, most of our rangers are behind the scenes in our offices, in remote areas of the park, or working on a diverse array of projects to enhance the park. So here are the faces of your Franklin Mountains State Park rangers, and we hope to meet many more of you throughout the New Year in 2015!

Take a break from the holiday rush and experience the beauty of the Franklin Mountains – and remember to wear your festive attire and Santa Hat for all of our December events!
December 2014:

Sun., December 6: 9:00 a.m. – Beginner’s Mountain Bike Ride
Sat., December 13: 9:00 a.m. T’was the Hike Before Christmas –Mundys
Sun., December 14: 9:00 a.m. Intermediate Mountain Bike Ride
Sat., December 20: 9:00 a.m. T’was the Hike Before Christmas – Upper Sunset
Sun., December 21: 9:00 a.m. Jingle Dogs Hike – Lower Sunset
Thurs., December 25: 10:00 a.m. Christmas Mine Tour


NEW YEARS DAY join us for our “First Day Hikes”!

Thurs., January 1: 9:00a.m. First Day Hike – The Maze Trail
Thurs., January 1: 12:00 p.m. First Day Hike – Aztec Caves Trail
Sat., January 3: 9:00 a.m. Guided Beginner’s Mountain Bike Ride
Sat., January 10: 9:00 a.m. Womens Only hike – Aztec Caves
Sat., January 17: 10:00 a.m. Copper Prospect Mine Tour
Sun., January 18: 8:00 a.m. Puzzler Endurance Mtn. Bike Race
Sun., January 25: 9:00 a.m. Nature Walk Trail
Sat., January 31: 12 Hours of Old El Paso Mountain Bike Race

We wish you all a very happy and safe holiday season and we look forward to seeing you out on the mountain soon!

About the Author

Adrianna Weickhardt

Park ranger, adventure chaser, environmentalist. As a park ranger with Texas Parks & Wildlife, I help people connect w/ the outdoors & have a lot of fun doing it!

Weickhardt is a graduate of Arkansas State University and has been with Texas Parks and Wildlife since 2011.

Last Minute LocalDecember 5, 2014


The Galleries: First Friday ArtWalk & Ghost Tour

This free event includes appetizers, refreshments and music. All of the art galleries are open in the evening for this once a month event. Art patrons are encouraged to come out and enjoy an evening of art and history. Other participating artists are: Amado Pena, Joe Arroyos, Al Borrego, G. Jacquez Calderon, Rob Mack, Alberto Escamilla, Bert Saldana, Sergio Acosta, Manuel Alvarado, Rob Mack, Robert Lichlyter, Sam Gutierrez, Robert Estrada and others

Enjoy Live Music at the El Bandido Restuarant & Cantina. Don’t miss the “Movie on the Wall” at sundown.
Sign up for the San Elizario Ghost Tour at 10:00 p.m., presented by Paso Del Norte Paranormal Society.

The Holiday Shopping: 4th Annual ChristKindle Market

This Christmas holiday market takes place in the heart of the San Elizario Historic Art District on December 7-8, 2013, and offers unique crafts and gifts for sale, a variety of entertainment, as well as German food and drinks.
ChristKindleMarket offers a holiday shopping experience unlike the department stores in the area, as many of the items are handcrafted and incredibly unique. Wares range from hand-painted glass and wooden ornaments, nutcrackers, cuckoo clocks, jewelry, toys, clothing, and more. Many of the vendors also offer demonstrations of the making of their items.

As it’s important to keep a full belly to stay warm in the winter chill, ChristKindleMarket will have a number of food and drink vendors on site as well. German sausages, sauerkraut, and potato pancakes are all on tap. Sweets, pastries and candies help provide a nice finish to your meal. To drink, German beers will be on hand as well as the traditional “Glühwein”, a hot spiced wine that is served around the holidays.

So this Christmas season, gather up the family and swing by ChristKindleMarket San Elizario for a one of a kind holiday experience — outside of Germany, that is.


The Haunted History: Hell Paso History Tour

History, Legends, and Lore come ALIVE as you experience El Paso’s Old West History on this interactive two hour walking tour! Ghosts915 will guide you on this adventure Saturdays at High Noon in Downtown El Paso!
All ages are welcome and learn about Dallas Stoudenmire and the four dead in 5 seconds, John Wesley Hardin, Pancho Villa, and MORE. Enter buildings and see why El Paso was once called the “Six Shooter Capital of the World”. Meet us at the Ghosts915 Paranormal Research Center by 11:30 this Saturday!

The Holiday Lights: Celebration of Lights Parade

The single largest event in downtown El Paso will be center stage when the evolve Federal Credit Union Celebration of Lights Program unfolds.

A new route for the Holiday Lights Parade has been done due to construction at San Jacinto Plaza with exceptional support from many city departments and businesses. Cleveland Square Park will be the site for the Holiday Lights with thousands upon thousands of lights and decorations.

Evolve Federal Credit Union will sponsor the largest fireworks display downtown from atop Mills Plaza Parking Garage. Fernanda Garcia, eight years old of Candlelighters of El Paso will flip the switch with El Paso Mayor Oscar Leeser.

4:30 p.m. First Armored Division Band
5:00 p.m. St. Anthony’s Seminary Franciscanos Choir
5:30 p.m. Holiday Lighting Ceremony
5:55 p.m. Holiday Lights Parade
7:15 p.m. Fireworks Display


The Precious Stones: Mineral, Gem, Jewelry, and Bead Show

El Paso Mineral & Gem Club presents the Mineral, Gem, Jewelry, and Bead Show at the El Maida Shrine Temple. Free parking and free admission.

About the Author

Visit El Paso

Welcome to the official Visit El Paso blog, your leading source for all things El Paso! Last Minute Local is posted every week and provides readers with a variety of "no planning necessary" ideas on things to see and do this weekend.

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