The New Mexico Tourism Department is encouraging all New Mexicans and their visitors to celebrate this Fourth of July weekend safely by seeking alternatives to setting off of backyard fireworks.

“New Mexico’s Independence Day weekend calendar is filled with safe and exciting events,” said Monique Jacobson, Secretary of the New Mexico Tourism Department. “This is also a great time to create new family traditions. My family likes to gather for banana splits for breakfast on the morning of the Fourth. Why not enjoy your ice cream at one of our 33 state parks still open and visit a stop or two along our Green Chile Cheeseburger Trail on your way home? We can exercise caution and still have a great time this weekend.”

Leading the list of family getaway contenders are Rio Rancho’s eighth annual Pork & Brew BBQ State Championships- named one of the best 100 events in the nation by the American Bus Association – at the Santa Ana Star Center.

Activities include live entertainment, fun jumps, pig races, kids’ corral, and, of course, food galore. With more than 30,000 in attendance last year, Pork & Brew has become one of the largest two-day events in New Mexico.

And if you haven’t traveled to Roswell for the annual UFO Festival, your timing could not be better. You know the legend; now experience the fun.

The Roswell Incident is now celebrated with the annual Roswell UFO Festival, which annually attracts doubters, believers, scholars, scientists, authors, astronauts, tourists and children of all ages – from this world and beyond - to this small Southeastern New Mexico city in search of a little truth and a whole lot of fun, foolishness and entertainment.

Roswell will entertain thousands of visitors again during the festival this year. Guests can visit the crash site, alien attractions and attend lectures about one of the most infamous cover-ups in history.

If you want to stay a little closer to home and still enjoy a special time of year with your special friends, consider:
• Freedom Days Celebration in Farmington
• Wild West Days at the Rodeo Grounds in Grants
• Santa Fe Wine Festival at El Rancho de las Golondrinas.
• The Mescalero Apache Ceremonial in Mescalero
• Smokey Bear Stampede in Capitan
• Fourth of July Electric Light Parade in Las Cruces
• The Red River Parade
• The World’s Greatest Lizard Race and Party in Lovington
• Pancakes on the Plaza in Santa Fe
• Silver City Museum’s Ice-Cream Social.

The Department also encourages folks to support their local, community- and industry-based fireworks displays. A few are listed below:
• Fourth of July Fiesta at Plaza Park in Las Vegas
• Fourth of July Street Dance in Clayton
• Fireworks Display at Ute Lake State Park
• Fourth of July Extravaganza at Eagle Nest
• July Fourth Fireworks Extravaganza at the International Museum of Space History in Alamogordo
• Freedom Fourth at Balloon Fiesta Park in Albuquerque
• Fire on the Fourth Classic Car and Motorcycle Show in Angel Fire
• Fourth of July Celebration in Artesia
• Fourth of July Celebration at Valle del Sol Golf Course in Carrizozo
• Fourth of July Parade in Clayton
• Smoke on the Water at Greene Acres Park in Clovis
• Fourth of July Parade and Family Fun Day in Corrales
• Fireworks at the Southwestern New Mexico Fairgrounds in Deming
• Fourth of July at Daniel Fernandez Park in Los Lunas
• Fourth of July Bash at the Greyhound Arena in Portales
• Fourth of July Fun in Ripley Park in Raton
• Fireworks Show at Santa Fe High School
• Fourth of July Park Festival and Parade at Gough Park in Silver City
• Concert and Fireworks Display on New Mexico Tech Campus in Socorro
• Fourth of July Celebration in Taos

For a complete list of all upcoming activities, visit

“New Mexico is not only a great vacation destination; it is also our home,” Secretary Jacobson said. “State monuments, museums, music festivals – the list is endless. Re-experience the uniqueness of our New Mexico this Fourth of July in a safe and responsible way that protects all we have to offer.”