Sunday, June 23, 2024

August fairs and festivals: Chamber music, wine, films and balloons

Wine, cinema and song are on the agenda for Mexico in August along with fireflies, tennis and guitars. Here is your monthly guide to what’s going on around the country.

• Viewing of the Fireflies, Nanacamilpa, Tlaxcala (Now-August 14)

For those looking to connect with the natural world, the spectacle of fireflies lighting up the nighttime forest for mating season will return to the Firefly Sanctuary in the town which has become famous for its luminescent insects.

• Saltillo Fair, Saltillo, Coahuila (Now-August 7)

Saltillo’s annual festival returns. There’s a lot on offer for kids with a dinosaur exhibition, circus performances, a funfair and cowboy shows. The concert lineup is banda and norteño heavy, but also includes local ska band Inspector, members of the Cuban ensemble Buena Vista Social Club and Mexican singer Flor Amargo, who crosses many genres. Entrance costs 70 pesos (US $3.50) and there are 2×1 tickets on Mondays and Tuesdays. Seniors and disabled people can enter for 40 pesos ($2).

• Wine Harvest and Grape Treading, Ezequiel Montes, Querétaro (Now-August 14)

There’s free entry from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. to the La Redonda vineyards for the annual grape treading, part of the process to turn the fruits into juice ready to be transformed into wine. Anyone who attends will be asked to take their shoes off and help crush the grapes. There will be entertainment too, with live music and wine tasting and plenty of opportunities to learn how wine is made.

• Lagos de Moreno Festival, Lagos de Moreno, Jalisco (July 28-August 14)

The attractive Magical Town Lagos de Moreno in Jalisco brings back its annual festival this year. There will be performances from clowns, ranchera and pop music performances, among other genres, and a whole separate lineup of kids entertainment. It’s a local affair, but still a great opportunity to visit an often overlooked Magical Town, about midway between San Miguel de Allende and Guadalajara.

Los Cabos Tennis Open, Cabo San Lucas, Baja California Sur (August 1-6)

There are still tickets available for the Los Cabos Tennis Open, with a range of packages available and single days starting at 550 pesos ($27). The ATP event welcomes the world’s highest ranking men’s player, Russian Daniil Medvedev; U.S. serve maestro John Isner and No. 9 ranked Canadian Felix Auger-Aliassime.

• Festival of Rustic Furniture and Embroidered Textiles, Pichátaro, Michoacán (August 4-6)

Finely worked hand-crafted wooden furniture and beautifully embroidered textiles are on offer at the festival, 90 kilometers west of Morelia. The 31st edition of the event includes religious activities, a wood carving contest, local gastronomy and traditional dances, in a state renowned for its artisanship.

• Feria Potosina, San Luis Potosí city (August 5-28)

The annual San Luis Potosí city festival returns, also known as the Fenapo. The modern festival includes an impressive funfair and a star studded concert line up, featuring Maná, Colombian artists J Balvin and Carlos Vives and many others. There’s free entry to some of the biggest names at the Teatro del Pueblo, while tickets for concerts in the Palenque stadium can be bought here.

Guitars are the focus of the annual festival in Paracho, Michoacán.
Guitars are the focus of the annual festival in Paracho, Michoacán.

• Guitar Festival, Paracho, Michoacán (August 6-14)

The Paracho Guitar Festival brings musicians from Italy, Colombia and the United States to the Purépecha Magical Town, 120 kilometers west of Morelia. The festival will have an open relaxed atmosphere and will include a classical guitar contest for musicians and a competition for instrument makers, for whom the town is famed.

• Huamantla Festival, Huamantla, Tlaxcala (August 6-21)

The annual festival returns to Huamantla, a Magical Town in Tlaxcala. Horses, bulls and flowers feature heavily at the traditional festival. Expect it to be noisy on August 14 for the “Night When No One Sleeps” when the town lets loose. Tickets for a package of three events in the bull ring can be bought here, with prices starting at 750 pesos ($36).

• Festival of Grapes and Wine, Parras, Coahuila (August 9)

There’s further opportunity to celebrate wine at the Casa Madero vineyard in the Magical Town of Parras which, founded in 1597, claims to be the oldest vineyard in the Americas. There is free entry to the event at the Hacienda San Lorenzo, which promises folkloric dancers, fireworks and food and wine for sale. The event starts at 6:30 p.m.

• Festival of Arts, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato (August 11-21)

The first edition of the San Miguel de Allende Arts Festival (Fasma) will see 71 music, theater, cinema, dance, literature and other visual expressions of the arts. Many events will be free or for a very low cost in the cultural venues and public squares of the city and Germany will be the guest country. The festival “demonstrates, once again, why this small World Heritage city is considered the heart that gives strength to the pulse of Mexico and the heartbeat of the world,” a festival spokesperson said.

• San Miguel de Allende Chamber Music Festival, San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato (August 12-27)

A classical music festival comes to San Miguel with concerts over three consecutive weekends. A Canadian piano trio will play alongside Anthony McGill, the clarinetist of the New York Philharmonic. American classical pianist Orion Weiss, who the Washington Post had noted for his “powerful technique and exceptional insight,” will also exhibit his talents, among others. Tickets start at 300 pesos ($15).

• L.A. Cetto Wine’s Party of the Colors, Valle de Guadalupe, Baja California (August 13)

There’s another opportunity to get wet feet at the L.A. Cetto vineyards in Valle de Guadalupe. The wine season will be inaugurated with a prayer at 12:30 p.m. on August 13, followed by a full program with a grape treading contest, wine tasting and canapes, a tour of the vineyards, music from singer Kalimba, dinner and more music from a DJ. Tickets for the full day cost 6,000 pesos ($290) and are available at L.A. Cetto stores in Baja California and Mexico City and through Whatsapp at +52 664 364 3867.

• “Pharmakon” art exhibition, Tulum, Quintana Roo (August 13)

Pharmakon: Psychotropic Symbiosis is the new exhibition from Colombian artist Cristina Ochoa, set to open in Tulum. The three-part exhibition is interactive and promises to span the senses, exploring the pharmacological tradition of the Maya. The exhibition is the fruit of many years of investigation by Ochoa into the flora discussed in the Maya texts the Popol Vuh and the Chilam Balam.  It will be on in the SFER IK Tulum arts center in the Hotel Zone.

• Cabuland, Monterrey, Nuevo León (August 13-14)

A hip hop festival returns to Monterrey. Puerto Rico’s reggaeton duo Joel & Randy and a rapper from the same island, Residente, are confirmed so far. Tickets for a single day are priced at 1,300 pesos ($63) and tickets for both days for 2,300 pesos ($112), while more expensive VIP tickets are also available.

• Fresnillo Festival, Fresnillo, Zacatecas (August 16-September 16)

The annual festival known as Fenafre will be back in the second largest city in Zacatecas, Fresnillo. The events will take place in Lagunilla Park to celebrate 466 years since the city’s foundation. The beauty pageant is leading the build up and Frensillo’s beauty queen is likely to feature heavily during the festival, which will see Banda music from El Recodo and from Bronco.

• Monterrey Cinema Festival, Monterrey, Nuevo León (August 17-28)

Filmmakers battle it out to win an emblematic Little Silver Goat award at the Monterrey Cinema Festival. Categories cover international, Mexican and Nuevo León films across documentary, animation, fiction and shorts. The red carpet and opening will take place at the Showcenter Complex on August 17. Seventy thousand pesos will be awarded to the winners of the best Mexican fiction and best Mexican documentary as well as the best Nuevo León feature film.

• Maya Hot Air Balloon Festival, Tahmek, Yucatán (August 20-21)

There’s a free balloon festival in Tahmek, 45 kilometers east of Mérida, which used to receive 10,000 visitors before the COVID-19 pandemic. The theme will exhibit the natural beauty, animals and customs of Yucatán. The balloons are purely decorative, and won’t be used to elevate spectators. Artisans from Medellín, Colombia, promise to light up the event with some of their works.

• Mexico City Marathon, Mexico City (August 28)

Dust off your sneakers for the Mexico City Marathon, where 30,000 runners will convene on the capital to follow a course from the National Autonomous University into Chapultepec Park, ending in the central square in the historic center, the zócalo. Those ready for the challenge can sign up here until August 24. The cost is 650 pesos ($32) for Mexicans and $80 for foreign nationals.

Mexico News Daily

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