On our first weekend here, we found a big Farmer’s Market to attend because that’s an activity we all enjoy. This one is right downtown and is a really nice mix of produce and souvenirs. I was pleased to see that we had any number of options for Aguas Fresca that day, and I’ve been pleased to see them available nearly everywhere since. It’s kind of like how I can get green chile added to just about anything anywhere. I love that. In fact, before the market we grabbed breakfast at The Kolache Factory, and mine was green chile brisket. Yum.
Albuquerque has an unexpectedly excellent botanical garden. I figured it would be nice enough, but I was really blown away by how much it actually had going on. We initially bought the combined ticket for the garden and the aquarium, but the garden took so long that we left the aquarium for another day. This was an easy decision because we decided to get a season pass for the whole BioPark (also includes the zoo), and they were nice enough to apply our daily fee to the season pass total, both of which are totally affordable anyway. Here is a little picture collage from our day at the garden. I found the over-sized garden for kids and the preserved (working) farm in the middle to be especially charming. Rosalind was also a big fan of the colorful and friendly koi.
NOW! Here is a video from the Bug-arium. The ant exhibit is one of the craziest, coolest, and most effective animal displays I’ve ever experienced. It’s up there with how the Prague Zoo just lets bats fly freely all over your head. The video doesn’t show the best part which is that the ants have an overhead branch that takes them throughout the whole exhibit, and you can just follow the busy little guys the whole way. You will definitely feel itchy while in the Bug-arium. It’s not an extensive place, but there is plenty to make you squirm and squeal. I doubt that many people go to the unassuming bathroom at the back of the Bug-arium, but let me give you the tip that if you do go to that bathroom, and wash your hands afterward because you aren’t gross, then you will get a fairly unwelcome (but kind of ingenious) surprise. I won’t ruin it for you, but just know that I left the bathroom going, “NOPE, that is UNNECESSARY!” But then I also took Rolo back in to show her what happens.
We highly recommend the botanical garden. There’s plenty of shade even for a hot ABQ day, but we happened to be fighting a cool drizzle most of our day.
The next cool thing we did with Rosalind in mind was take her to the single unlikeliest event I could think of happening during an Albuquerque June. An outdoor Ice Cream Festival. It actually serves as a fundraiser, and while there was a foam party (as evidenced below), and a few bouncy houses, the real draw is the fact that you can eat up to 21 different Blue Bell Ice Cream flavors. We didn’t really know how it functioned and bought ten tokens and an additional ten samples. It turns out that what we bought was TEN FULL ICE CREAM CONES on top of ten samples. We had to give most of our tokens away at the end. It was super fun before it was kind of nauseating and hot. I will definitely go back next year, but I will be smart and take more sunscreen, a hat, and probably even a parasol. We will also be smarter about how we purchase our tokens and tickets, but since it was a fundraiser, there is really no harm in realizing that anything more than 1 1/2 ice cream cones per person is way more than enough.
You can check out video of Rosalind throwing herself 100% into the foam party below.
She learned quickly that foam parties are far better in theory than in practice, and I think we might have headed off her need to try out a boozy foam party in the future. Good.