Sandhill Crane Festival at Albuquerque Open Space

Learn About Bosque Wildlife

Sandhill Cranes
© Aileen O'Catherine

Every November, the Sandhill Crane Festival comes to the Albuquerque Open Space Visitor Center. With 21 acres of agricultural fields that serve as a winter stopping ground for migratory birds, the sandhill cranes have a place to stay on their way to the Bosque del Apache and points further south. The middle Rio Grande valley serves as a backdrop for this family friendly event.

The festival informs visitors about the wildlife and natural vegetation and cycles of the Rio Grande bosque. The Sandhill Crane Festival in Albuquerque is less well known than the Bosque del Apache Festival of Cranes, but an extremely worthwhile event to attend. Learn about the wildlife of the bosque as well as sandhill cranes.

The Sandhill Crane Festival celebrates cranes with events that include arts and crafts, art shows and music, nature talks and walks, and the chance to see the cranes through high powered binoculars. The art galleries at the center will feature works that reflect the beauty of the bosque and its inhabitants.

November 14, 2015
9 a.m. - 5 p.m.
Some of the activities include a bosque bird walk, tai chi with the cranes, films, art workshops and the chance to walk near the cranes.

What to Expect:

When visiting the Open Space Visitor Center, you'll find several rooms focused on special activities. In one room you'll find tables of crafts activities for the kids, such as crane origami. In another, you'll find screenings of films. This year's films are Waking Up and Love in the Bosque, which will be in the media room. Another room will have a sandhill crane biology demonstration. 

For this year, there will also be music by Bethany and Quinn Boyack. Storyteller Susi Wolk will present Fur and Feather, Claw and Tooth: Worldwide Animal Tales. There will be a talk by Joelle Collier titled Auspicious Cranes: The Crane in Asian Cultures.

But the real show is outdoors, with the cranes in the fields. Spotting scopes will be available for viewing the birds, and expert bird watchers will be available to answer your questions. There will be a flyout walk as well. 

See a photo gallery of a past Sandhill Crane Festival to get an idea of what to expect.

Call 505-897-8831 for more information.

The festival is free of charge. Activities include viewing scopes, crafts, workshops, and activities for the kids. 

The Open Space Visitor Center is located at 6500 Coors Blvd. NW, between Montano and Paseo del Norte, at the end of Bosque Meadows Road.

See images from the Sandhill Crane Festival.