Need Plans for Saturday in Las Cruces?

As college students, we have a deep appreciation for DIY crafts and handcrafted home materials. Whether it’s browsing Pinterest or shopping on Etsy, we admire people for their creative outlook and artsy abilities. However, there’s a place right in the heart of Las Cruces that showcases these same abilities through a more local lens: The Farmers and Crafts Market of Las Cruces.

Every Wednesday and Saturday, hundreds of vendors and visitors alike gather at Plaza De Las Cruces on Main Street in our very own college city. Locals have the opportunity to sell produce, bread, decorations, carvings, chili, metalwork, earrings, necklaces, salsa, leatherwork, glass, popcorn, clothing, and other products in the heart of Las Cruces. The market also has a very homey feel. Vendors that partake in this event must be from Dona Ana County, and their products must be both homemade and local. The crops are homegrown, the jewelry is hand-crafted, and the woodwork is carved by your neighbors and family friends. There are a variety of products available for anyone to appreciate and enjoy. It’s a great opportunity to support local craftsmen while filling your pantry, buying gifts, or getting crafty decorations for your new house or dorm room.

Even if you’re not looking to spend money, this market is a great way to get connected to the city and experience the potential of Southern New Mexico. It attracts all kinds of different shoppers, from families to college students, from locals to visitors from other states. Musicians of all kinds gather on the street corners to showcase their skills and entertain the people who attend. Food trucks are also invited to set up at the market, so there are plenty of opportunities to try a new dish or see a new take on your favorite foods. Some of the vendors even offer product samples or tell you about the process of producing the crafts that they offer. If nothing else, you can at least get ideas for your own DIY projects that Pinterest and Etsy simply cannot offer.

The Farmers and Crafts Market has been a foundational part of the city we live in. It has been held each week for over 48 years now. It began in 1971, when local farmers would gather to sell their fresh crops to town residents. Eventually, more vendors started to join them—people who made honey, salsa, jewelry, decorations, or popcorn. Las Cruces made the market a tradition, and it now exists as a non-profit organization to give locals an opportunity to advertise and sell their products. It was even polled as the Number One Large Farmers Market in the Nation by America’s Farmland Trust in 2011. Since then, the Farmers and Crafts Market of Las Cruces has been expanded to hundreds of new vendors, who only have to pay a small operational fee for the chance to showcase their abilities and make money off the talents and hobbies that they enjoy.

The next time you have a Saturday morning with nothing to do, I would recommend going to the Farmers and Crafts Market of Las Cruces. Grab your girls, drive down to Main Street, and check out the local talent that is often hidden in our great New Mexico City. It’s a great way to experience the soul of Las Cruces with friends and find products that aren’t available anywhere else in the world. Who knows? You might find something that you’ve never seen before!