State-run museums and monuments closed on state furlough days


SANTA FE — All state-operated museums and monuments under the Department of Cultural Affairs will be closed on those days included in the Statewide Governor Mandated Furlough Plan.



Those closure days include Friday, Jan. 15; Friday, March 5; Friday, April 2; and Friday, May 28. The closings include the museum gift shops.

State museums and monuments affected by the furlough plan include the Museum of International Folk Art, Museum of Indian Arts & Culture, New Mexico Museum of Art and the New Mexico History Museum/Palace of the Governors, all in Santa Fe; the Museum of Natural History & Science and the National Hispanic Cultural Center, both in Albuquerque; the New Mexico Museum of Space History in Alamogordo; New Mexico Farm & Ranch Heritage Museum in Las Cruces; and six historic monuments statewide — Coronado State Monument in Bernalillo, Jemez State Monument near Jemez Springs, El Camino Real International Heritage Center south of Socorro, Lincoln State Monument in the town of Lincoln, the Bosque Redondo Memorial at Fort Sumner, and Fort Selden State Monument in Radium Springs near Las Cruces.

State Parks has received approval from the State Personal Board for alternative furlough days that allow all 35 state parks to remain open on busy spring holiday weekends.

Gov. Bill Richardson previously approved the alternative furlough plan for State Parks, but the plan had to be heard and approved by the State Personal Board. The Board approved the plan on Dec. 16.

However, in accordance with the furlough plan, New Mexico State Parks will not be open to the public on the following days: Friday, Jan. 15; Tuesday, Feb. 9; Tuesday, March 2; and Tuesday, March 23.


Parks Get A Break

State parks will remain open on all holidays as usual, including Christmas, New Years Day, Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, Easter, Memorial Day, Independence Day and Labor Day.

The State Parks office in Santa Fe will follow the same five furlough days as the rest of state government, including museums and state monuments.

“We regret any inconvenience this may cause but thanks to Governor Richardson and the State Personnel Board, we will be open on all spring holiday weekends,” said State Parks Director Dave Simon.


Park Procedures

All 35 state parks will follow these procedures when closed:

• Closed to vehicular and pedestrian access for the general public and park recreation activities

• All visitors must be out of the state parks by 9 p.m. the night before closure dates; no overnight camping will be allowed either the night before the closure days or on the closure days themselves. The parks will be open for day-use visitors on the days prior to the closures and will reopen at 7 a.m. on days following the closures

• All State Park-operated boat ramps and access points to lakes and rivers within state parks will be closed, except the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers will keep its Southside boat ramp at Conchas Lake and the main boat ramp at Santa Rosa Lake open during all state park closure days

• All concessionaire-operated marinas within state parks will be closed to the general public for normal business; slip renters at marinas in state parks will have access to the marinas to check on their boats but should not take their boats out on the water

• Lessees at the Conchas Lake State Park trailer park and the Dam Site trailer park at Elephant Butte Lake State Park may access their trailers, but will not be permitted to use the rest of the park

• Members of the public who already have advance reservations affected by the state park closures will receive refunds or rain checks

• State park rangers will be on patrol or on standby during the park closure days; members of the public who violate park rules may be cited

For more information, call toll-free 888-NMPARKS (888-667-2757) or visit


Contact Submitted to El Defensor Chieftain