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"Smithsonian" Magazine's Museum Day Live! at Western Heritage Museum

9/19/2014 4:33:29 p.m. - Hobbs, NM. The Western Heritage Museum and Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame will open its doors free of charge on Saturday September 27, as part of Smithsonian magazine’s tenth annual Museum Day Live!  A nationwide event, Museum Day Live! offers free admission to visitors presenting a Museum Day Live! ticket at a participating museum or cultural institution.

Inclusive by design, the event represents Smithsonian’s commitment to make learning and the spread of knowledge accessible to everyone, giving museums across all 50 states the opportunity to emulate the admission policy of the Smithsonian museums in Washington D.C.  Last year’s event drew over 400,000 participants, and this year’s event expects record-high participation.

“Although our Museum sponsors several ‘free’ days each year, we are pleased to be able to offer yet another opportunity for our friends to enjoy the wonders of the Museum world for free,” said Executive Director, Darrell Beauchamp.  “The Smithsonian provides TWO free tickets, but the WHM will honor the TWO tickets as a FREE FAMILY PASS.”

The home of "Hobbspitality," located on the campus of New Mexico Junior College in Hobbs, NM, the Western Heritage Museum and Lea County Cowboy Hall of Fame strives to be the regional leader in the preservation and exhibition of artifacts and materials documenting the cowboy and ranching heritage of Southeast New Mexico and West Texas.

The current traveling exhibit at the Western Heritage Museum is Arte en la Charreria showcasing the exquisite artisanship of Mexican crafts in the more than 150 objects designed specifically for the charro, or Mexican cowboy. Featuring leather work, costumes, textiles and silver and iron work that illustrate the life of these revered horsemen, these objects—many utilitarian in origin—have been transformed into detailed works of art that embody the very identity of the Mexican nation.

Influenced by the horse-riding and bull-fighting Spanish conquistador, the early charro were often descended from Spanish and indigenous peoples. Initially vaqueros, or horsemen and cattle herders of Spanish Mexico, charros began to transform their labor-intensive work into competitions out of a desire to show off individual ranching skills. Over the years, they evolved their competitions and rivalries into full-scale events now practiced in charreria—the national sport of Mexico.

Arte en la Charreria is organized by International Arts & Artists, Washington, DC, in collaboration with Marisu Gonzalez German and Gabriel Cabello Martinez.

The Museum Day Live! ticket is available to download at www.Smithsonian.com/museumdaylive. One ticket is permitted per household, per email address. 

For more information, contact Erin Anderson, Curator:  eanderson@nmjc.eduor 575-492-2681.

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