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Parks & Recreation Encourages Burqueños to #OptOutside this Black Friday

Fees will be waived at Elena Gallegos Open Space and Boca Negra Canyon

On Friday, November 29, 2019, the City of Albuquerque Parks and Recreation Department is encouraging folks to #OptOutside and enjoy the City’s parks and open spaces. Outdoor recreation retailers and advocacy groups started the #OptOutside campaign four years ago in an effort to improve the physical and mental health of millions of Americans by encouraging them to spend time in nature in addition to only shopping on Black Friday. As an incentive to get more people outside, the Open Space Division will waive entrance fees at Elena Gallegos Open Space and Boca Negra Canyon.

“After the stress of fighting the Black Friday crowds, head outside to improve your physical and mental health,” stated Dave Simon, Director of Parks and Recreation. “A walk in your neighborhood park, the Bosque, or the foothills is the best Black Friday bargain in Albuquerque.”

As part of the #OptOutside campaign, the Open Space Visitor Center is holding several events this weekend for folks to enjoy. In addition to the events listed below, visitors can enjoy self-guided nature walks, miles of Bosque hiking trails, viewing areas of Sandhill cranes, and other wildlife, art galleries, and permanent exhibits. This Visitor Center will be closed on Thanksgiving and will reopen Friday, November 29 from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m.

To find a park or trail near you, visit Hours for Elena Gallegos and other trailheads in the Sandia foothills run from 7:00 a.m. until 7:00 p.m. Hours at Petroglyph National Monument, including Boca Negra Canyon, are 8:30 a.m. until 4:30 p.m.

Upcoming Open Space Visitor Center Classes, Workshops, and Gallery Exhibits:

  • Sandhill Crane Observation + Documentary & Kid’s Activities: Friday, November 29, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Stop by the Open Space Visitor Center and immerse yourself in the world of the Sandhill Crane. In addition to Sandhill Crane observation from our outdoor and indoor observation areas, visitors can experience a special screening of the visually stunning film, “Crane Song,” at 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. in the Kiva Room. “Crane Song” is a vibrant high-definition documentary by NET Television that tells a visual story of the Sandhill Crane’s migration through Nebraska, weaving together striking images and majestic sounds of the birds’ journey with the stories and insights of the individuals who observe these creatures, as well as landowners endeavoring to ensure a habitat that is welcoming to the cranes.

    Families with kids are invited to stop by the Kids’ Activity Room for fun self-guided activities related to the Sandhill Crane. The art exhibits the “Crane’s Oasis” and “The Book of Cranes” are also on display at the Open Space Visitor Center through December 2019.
  • Out of Doors: Acts of Ecology in Albuquerque: With an overarching theme of eco-centrism, the artwork of Art Park 21 includes atmospheric elements such as wind, rain, sunlight, and humidity; plant life; recycled and repurposed elements; and concepts that explore the interface between three dimensional art and architecture. The conceptual bases of several of the works include reference to the fields of engineering, science, and environmental research. The artworks are located in several different locations within Albuquerque’s Major Public Open Space areas including the Open Space Visitor Center, Los Poblanos Fields, and the Pueblo Montano picnic area.

  • Upcycled Holiday Wall Hanging Workshop: Saturday, November 30, 10:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. Artist Lynnette Rizek will guide participants in creating beautiful holiday wall hangings made from natural materials and re-purposed decorative items. Supplies will be provided including mounting sticks, string, and several natural or up cycled findings like glass ornaments, dried flowers, and feathers. Participants are encouraged to bring small ornaments (anywhere from an inch to 4 1/2" in size) or any small embellishments they would like to include. Also, bring a snack and water if you would like. Space is limited. Please call 897-8831 to reserve your place. There is a $10.00 materials fee payable to the Open Space Alliance

  • Yoga with a View: Every Sunday at 9:00 a.m. Begin Sundays with an invigorating yoga session at 9:00am. Your first class is $5, subsequent classes are $15, and if you buy in bulk, they’re even less. Class fees include a donation to the Open Space Alliance.

About the Open Space Visitor Center:

The Open Space Visitor Center is an interpretive hub for the Open Space program, lands, and resources. Visitors enjoy educational exhibits, art displays, wildlife fields, a Traditions garden, Bosque trails, and a variety of talks, workshops, demonstrations and entertainment. The Open Space Visitor Center is located at 6500 Coors Boulevard, between Montaño Road and Paseo del Norte at the end of Bosque Meadows Road. Look for the Flyway art installation. Call 505-897-8831 or see for more information.