Las Cruces Journals

Cinco de Mayo in Las Cruces

An April 2004 trip to Las Cruces by Coronado Bob & Berie

Quote: For people who are true aficionados of New Mexican-style Mexican food (need a chile fix) and who love the fun of a festival, a brief trip to Las Cruces, New Mexico can be a laid-back, wonderful experience.

Cinco de Mayo in Las Cruces

Overview

Quote:
Visit Historic Old Mesilla with its shops, restaurants as well as the Billy the Kid Courthouse. Take a hike up the Organ Mountains at Aguirre Springs. Take a four-mile hike through the dunes of White Sands National Monument. Enjoy lots of New Mexican Chili. Watch the sun set on the Organ Mountains from the rest area west of the city on the mesa.Quick Tips: Fly into El Paso's new and beautiful airport and rent a car for the 40-mile drive to Las Cruces. Avoid commercial restaurants and eat where the locals eat. Bring shorts for day time and jeans and jackets for the cool evenings. Beware of the spring winds, fall is a better time, summers are very hot.Best Way To Get Around: Rent...Read More

Hotel Encanto de Las Cruces

Hotel | "Hilton Las Cruces"

Quote:
This is an older Hilton that has been "rode hard and put away wet," but is comfortable, convenient, and has great views. The amenities are up to the Hilton standard.

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

Hotel Encanto de Las Cruces
705 S TELSHOR BLVD
Las Cruces, New Mexico 88001
505 522-4300

El Patio

Restaurant

Quote:
The only food at El Patio is a bag of chips, but the beer is good and cold, and the place is full of local color. There are pictures on the wall of famous people who have stopped or played music there, including maybe Elvis and Humphrey Bogart??? It is a dark very old traditional bar that features live music on Wednesday nights, pool, and a big screen TV in the back. Lively and filled with locals, it is an experience.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

El Patio
Calle De Parian
Las Cruces, New Mexico 88046
(505) 526-9943

Ranchway BBQ & Mexican Food

Restaurant | "Ranchway"

Quote:
This is another family-owned place where you order at the counter and come back when your number is called. We ignored the possibility of steaks and barbecue and went for the combination plate and tostada compuesta. The chili is not quite up to Nellie's, but is okay (the meat is not quite as tender). We did have the posole soup, which is only offered on Fridays and Saturdays, and it was very tasty and full of chunks of meat. It is a meal in itself. Again, there’s no liquor license, so be content with water or iced tea. The sopapillas are not nearly the caliber of Nellie's Café, but better than commercial places. The ground meat tacos are even recommended by the wife of Danny Ray of Nellie...Read More

Member Rating 3 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

Ranchway BBQ & Mexican Food
604 North Valley Drive
Las Cruces, New Mexico 88005
(505) 523-7361

La Posta

Restaurant

Quote:
Housed in an 1850s adobe building near Old Mesilla Plaza, this restaurant has been family owned and operated for 60 years. The building was once the stage coach stop for the Butterfield Stage Line. They feature New Mexico-style Mexican foods, but also steaks. They have a large selection of tequilas but we were disappointed in our margaritas. This restaurant claims to have invented tostadas compuestas and they are really very good! The sopapillas are good but not as good as Nellie's Cafe. The posole soup was wonderful and very different from versions you get in Texas or in California. There is a Chile Shop inside of the restaurant for browsing. The restaurant has several rooms s...Read More

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

La Posta
2410 Calle de San Albino
Las Cruces, New Mexico
(505) 524-3524

Nellie's Cafe

Best Of IgoUgo

Restaurant

Quote:
Nellie's has been around since the 1960s and remains a family owned and operated restaurant with few changes (they now have Georgia O'Keefe prints on the walls and green plants). It is only open from 8am to 4pm Tuesday through Saturday. This is the world's BEST for those who love really authentic HOT New Mexican chiles. Ask Nellie's son, Danny Ray, whether the "green" or the "red" is the hottest when you are there because it is sometimes one and sometimes the other depending on season and weather. The one that is less hot is always very tasty, even for those who love the hot. Order a gordita, a cornmeal pocket filled with seasoned ground meat, lettuce, and tomatoes. Have a green or red chil...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

Nellie's Cafe
1226 West Hadley Avenue
Las Cruces, New Mexico 88005
(505) 526-6816

Aguirre Springs

Attraction

Quote:
This is a well organized and well kept camping, picnic, and hiking area. There is a six-mile hike that goes over the top of the Organ Mountains or a 4.5-mile loop hike that winds around under the Organ Mountain Peaks. We did the 4.5-mile hike in sturdy sandals. The view below is the White Sands Missile Range facility and miles beyond. The Organ Mountain peaks above are an awesome sight. There are picnic tables and grills for those who wish to have a picnic there. We loved this spot.

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

Aguirre Springs
Aguirre Spring Road
Las Cruces, New Mexico

Quote:
Great white gypsum sand dunes cover 275 square miles of the Chihuahuan Desert. There are four hiking trails including one that is wheelchair accessible. We loved the one-mile Big Dune Nature Trail with guide map that explains the plant life along the trail. But the big treat was the 4.6-mile hike to Alkali Flat, the lake basin where this all began 250 million years ago. The trail is extremely well marked leading across giant pure white dunes in the Heart of the Sands. If you are near Alamagordo (15 miles away)or Las Cruces (50 miles away), this is well worth a stop long enough to make this hike. It took us 1.5 hours, but it says that it takes up to three hours for those not used to hiking...Read More

Member Rating 5 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

White Sands National Monument
P.O. Box 1086
Las Cruces, New Mexico
(505) 679-2599

Cinco de Mayo Celebrations

Attraction | "Cinco de Mayo"

Quote:
On the Saturday and Sunday before Cinco de Mayo, the plaza is decorated and surrounded by vendors with local foods, lemonade, and crafts. Beginning at noon on Saturday, there is a constant stream of mariachis and ballet folklorico dancers that entertain the milling crowds. The setting is perfect for a Cinco de Mayo Festival.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

Cinco de Mayo Celebrations
Old Mesilla Plaza
Las Cruces, New Mexico

Shopping in Mesilla

Attraction

Quote:
There are numerous art galleries and shops with local crafts and wares. Las Cruces is surrounded by pecan orchards. The largest is owned by Stahmann and they have a store on the plaza where they sell the best and freshest pecans you have ever tasted. They ship, too. Close by is Ristramnn Chile Co. where you can buy the chile ristras in several sizes and chile powders by the 3/4-lb package, not to mention chile sauces made in Las Cruces.

Member Rating 4 out of 5 on May 3, 2004

Shopping in Mesilla
Old Mesilla Plaza
Las Cruces, New Mexico

Other Things to Do

Story/Tip

Quote:
We ran out of time, but intend to go back and visit the Stahmann Farms, the La Vina Winery, and some of the many museums. We will possibly take a trip to the Gila Cliff Dwellings west and north of Las Cruces. AND, of course, we'll definitely go back to Nellie's Cafe.