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Madrid: Cozy N.M. Town Is Even More Inviting Around Christmas

December 15, 2011

By Laurie Clark / Mountain View Telegraph on Thu, Dec 15, 2011

The town of Madrid is a town built on memories, and those memories are especially on display at Christmas time.

Driving into town from the south, you are surrounded by piles of earth, some of it black — remnants of coal mining from long ago. To the right is the Mine Shaft Tavern, years ago a gathering place for miners, and more recently tourists, to have fun and maybe even a few drinks. Then there’s a theater where old-fashioned melodramas are performed. Just past that is a huge train car, looming on a hill over the street, a reminder of the days when the town was bustling enough to need a train stop.

Walking down main street there are quaint little buildings on both sides — old houses converted into shops, colorfully painted and decorated on the outside, but still with a homey feel on the inside.

Friendly shop owners, sitting outside to enjoy the chilly night air, ask if you’d like to roast some marshmallows with them over their fires.

The canine representatives of the town wander around to greet you. When dusk comes, the Christmas lights come on, with a snow covered mountain as the backdrop. There is that wonderful scent in the air of wood burning in fireplaces, along with the coziness that this implies.

Christmas is the perfect time of year to build your own memories of Madrid, whether you are interested in the history or the shopping, or just passing through on your way to Santa Fe.

And, there is the added benefit of crossing some gifts off the “to buy” list — especially when you need something for that hard-to-please person.

“This is a good place to go when you just need to find a gift,” said Vicky Harvey, who was taking a day trip to Madrid from Albuquerque.

The stores offer just about anything you can think of, from antique to new, from handmade crafts to dug-up artifacts, from the beautiful to the strangely intriguing. There are clothes, jewelry, pottery, art glass, paintings and more, for all kinds of tastes and price ranges.

Christmas is a fun time of year for those who work in Madrid, too.

Christmas is “an excuse to get together around the fire and drink wine … a chance to touch base with people and have a good time,” said Janice Lindemuth, owner of Eclectique de Madrid, a shop that sells boots, among other things.

To make sure you can make the most of Madrid at Christmas time, the town’s shops are staying open late on weekends during December. Madrid is on N.M. 14, just south of Santa Fe. To find out more, go online to

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Upcoming Event

Madrid Annual Christmas Parade (Dec 2)  and December Open House

Saturday, December 2, 4:00 pm
Come out to spend the day in Madrid, New Mexico's Christmas Town, and watch our annual Christmas Parade! The parade is our traditional kick-off to the Holiday Season. Businesses and homes in Madrid will be lighting their lights at sundown after the parade, with shop and home prizes for best lights. Weekends in December will be Open House in Madrid, with businesses open late Saturday nights leading up to Christmas, serving refreshments. While you shop and stroll, keep an eye out for local musicians. Santa will be in town weekend afternoons! The businesses in Madrid thank you for supporting local artists and businesses. We look forward to seeing you there!

Enjoy specials and live music at the Mine Shaft Tavern. FRI 15 NATHAN FOX in the Cantina 5pm
FRI 15 THE PALM IN THE CYPRESS in the tavern 8pm blues/folk
SAT 16 MINERAL HILL gypsy punkgrass at the cantina
SAT 16 SILVER STRING BAND bluegrass/Americana in the tavern 8pm
SUN 17 GREG BUTERA at the cantina 3pm
WED 20 THOMAS CHAMPAGE at the cantina 5pm
THUR 21 LUCY BARNA & LORI OTTINO at the cantina 5pm
THUR 21 The Goatheads in the tavern 7pm
FRI 22 LUCY BARNA & LORI OTTINO Americana at the cantina 5pm
FRI 22 TRUCKSTOP HONEYMOON alt/country in the tavern 8pm
SAT 23 KITTY JO CREEK at the cantina3pm
SAT 23 FRITZ AND THE BLUEJAYS rockinblues in the tavern 8pm
SUN 24 Christmas Eve specials and Live music 2-6pm
FRI 29 THE TODDLERS americana at the cantina 5pm
FRI 29 STRING DINNER bluegrass in the tavern 8pm
SAT 30 JIM AND TIM soulful blues at the cantina 3pm
SAT 30 HOGAN AND MOSS scorch folk in the tavern 7pm
SUN 31 KEY FRANCES BAND blues at the cantina 3pm
Special Menu…call 505-473-0743 RSVP Dining Dancing and Fun!!

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