In New Mexico, re-enactment of conquistador reclaiming Santa Fe will end

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) — An annual reenactment of a 17th-century Spanish conquistador reclaiming Santa Fe from Native Americans after an uprising will end amid protests that it whitewashed a dark period in New Mexico history.

Organizers of the annual Fiesta de Santa Fe said they would discontinue the event known as the Entrada after months of closed-door discussions about how to resolve growing discord over its significance, Regis Pecos, who has been designated to speak on behalf of the various groups, said Tuesday.

The event was performed each autumn on Santa Fe Plaza during the annual fiesta and has become a symbol of colonialism for some Native Americans, as well as a painful reminder of New Mexico's bloody past.

"The Entrada as we have known it will no longer be part of the fiesta for all of the obvious reasons of what it causes in continuing that representation of the past," Pecos said.

Various stakeholders, including the Santa Fe Fiesta Council and the Caballeros de Vargas, a fraternal organization that put on the reenactment, agreed to return to the original intent of a proclamation signed in 1712 that calls for a celebration "with Vespers, Mass, Sermon and Procession through the Main Plaza."

Details were still being worked out, but Pecos, a former governor of Cochiti Pueblo, said there are plans for a revised series of events to commemorate the negotiation of reconciliation.

The Entrada — Spanish for the entry — depicted the re-entry of conquistador Don Diego de Vargas into Santa Fe after the Pueblo Revolt of 1680.