SANTA FE, N.M. (KRQE) – The City of Santa Fe is considering an amendment to an ordinance that would allow up to eight cultural events on the plaza, including Juneteenth and Indigenous People’s Day. According to a city spokesperson, this is in addition to the eight commercial events allowed on the plaza per calendar year. But it’s drawing concern from some groups who feel they may get left out.
As outdoor activities gain popularity and the city expects more tourism with a ‘waning pandemic,’ councilors are considering an amendment to allow up to eight cultural events on the plaza per calendar year. The eight events would include Juneteenth and Indigenous People’s Day, and six other events on a list of about eight. The other six would be chosen on a lottery system. One event notably off the list is Santa Fe Pride.
“Pride Santa Fe should always be one of the major city events to take place on the plaza because it will promote queer and trans acceptance for generations moving forward,” said Ryan Salazar, with the Human Right Alliance of Santa Fe.
On Wednesday, a number of citizens asked for Pride to be added to the list of events that could happen on the Plaza.
“It is of the utmost importance that Pride Santa Fe remain on the plaza, that it is recognized as a very important event, as the very fabric that is Santa Fe,” said Kevin Bowen, President of HRA Santa Fe. Others including a representative of Meow Wolf and a local veteran part of the LGBTQIA plus community also spoke in favor of Pride remaining on the plaza. Pride organizers said this last Pride was the biggest yet and that important cultural event shouldn’t be pitted against one another.
“We are thrilled that the Indigenous People’s Day is being included and that Juneteenth is all part of this ordinance, and we want you to know that we will do everything we can to support our city and we expect our city to do everything it can to support us,” said Bowen.
Some speakers also raised concerns about the effect the eight events could have on vendors on the plaza, who could be pushed out. The amended bill will work its way through committees before going in front of the council again at the end of August.