New Mexico History Museum

Holiday at the Palace of the Governors

September 12, 2008


 Rene Harris, Assistant Director

Holiday Festivities at the Palace of the Governors

December 12 and 14, 2008

Christmas at the Palace, Tesoros de Devoción and Las Posadas

Santa Fe,New Mexico-The Palace of the Governors announces the ever-popular holiday events Christmas at the Palace, Friday, December 12, and Las Posadas, Sunday, December 14.  Enjoy Santa Fe holiday magic in activities at the Palace of the Governors and on the historic Santa Fe Plaza. Christmas at the Palace and Las Posadas promise old-fashioned charm and treasures, and are wonderful holiday experiences for the entire family.

Christmas at the Palace-Friday, December 12, 5:30- 8 p.m. A festive holiday tradition. Children can visit with Santa to share their wishes for Christmas morning. Luminarias illuminate the courtyard and keep revelers warm. Enjoy warm cider, cookies, and musical performances by local choirs and musicians while touring the Palace.

Festivities will kick off at 5:30 p.m. with the Palace of the Governors opening its doors to welcome holiday revelers. Santa and Mrs. Claus will visit with children all evening in the Palace Courtyard. Guests are invited to tour the galleries and enjoy musical performances throughout the Palace.

In the spirit of the Christmas season, visitors can view Tesoros de Devoción: Treasures of Devotion, a collection of religious bultos, retablos, and crucifijos dating from the late 1700s to 1900, on exhibit at the Palace of the Governors.  The exhibit demonstrates how European stylistic traditions and iconography were combined with new palettes, different styles, and distinctive regional decorative designs that transformed New Mexico santo making into a unique hybrid.  Tesoros de Devocion is truly a visually astonishing and moving exhibition and should not be missed. Admission is free during Christmas at the Palace (as well as every Friday from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.). Admission is also free to New Mexico residents on Sundays making Tesoros de Devocióon a convenient stop prior to the Las Posadas event.

Las Posadas-Sunday, December 14, 5:30- 7 p.m. Las Posadas, "The Inns," is the recreation of Mary and Joseph's journey through Bethlehem seeking shelter. Join a procession that encounters devils while Mary and Joseph search for a place to stay. Participants are welcome to carry candles as the procession moves through the Plaza. The Courtyard of the Palace of the Governors will offer safe lodging to Mary and Joseph and provide refreshments to procession followers.

Both events are free.

The Palace of the Governors, built by the Spanish in1609, has been New Mexico's state history museum since 1909. It is the oldest continuously occupied public building in the United States. The museum's collection of more than 17,000 historical objects documents the Spanish Colonial, Mexican, American Territorial, and recent eras in New Mexico history. Items date from the time of the earliest Spanish explorations in the 16th century and chronicle 223 years of Spanish administrative control, 25 years as part of Mexico, 66 years as a territory of the United States, and from statehood in 1912 to the present.  The Palace also administers the Fray Angélico Chávez History Library and Photo Archives, the Palace Print Shop & Bindery, and the Portal Program. In 2009, the Palace of the Governors will be incorporated into the New Mexico History Museum, a 96,000-square-foot building now under construction behind the Palace.

The Palace of the Governors is located on the Plaza in Santa Fe at 105 West Palace Avenue. Call 505.476.5100 for more information, or


Back to Press Release List »