Peanut Festival Returns to Portales

Eastern New Mexico’s peanut-growing tradition will be celebrated at the 42nd Peanut Valley Festival from Oct. 17-18 at the Roosevelt County Fairgrounds in Portales, NM.

The two-day event will host a variety of vendors and entertainment including musicians and demonstrations. Musical acts include Will Bannister and the Modern Day Ramblers, Junkyard Rhino, the Blackwater Band, Andy Mason, Josh Sullivan, Colton Hardy, and the Vintage Bluegrass Band.

There will also be a variety of food vendors with everything from peanut-themed foods to traditional carnival-favorite snacks.

Also coming to the festival this year are the World Fusion Dancers who will bring a variety of Middle Eastern dance styles. Wild Bill Cathey will also be there to dazzle the crowd with a lively act of Western trick roping.

This year’s festival will also feature Medieval village demonstrations by the Society for Creative Anachronism. These demonstrations will showcase a variety of different arts and sciences as they were in Medieval times. A key feature of the demonstration will be armored combat, in which people will dress up in what is usually quite close to Medieval looking armor and fight with rattan weapons.

The events will get under way Saturday with the Peanut Dash 5k. Check in will start at 8 a.m. with the race starting at 9 a.m. at Eastern New Mexico University’s Campus Union Building.

Registration is $15 and includes a T-shirt. The fun run is put on by ENMU Athletics and helps raise funds for team expenses.

At 9 a.m. on Saturday, the health fair sponsored by the Roosevelt County Health Office gets under way and runs until noon in the Pavilion north of the events arena. You can get children’s shots along with a variety of other free screenings from a host of local providers.

The arts and crafts portion of the festival starts at 9 a.m. on Saturday in the Roosevelt County Events Arena at the Roosevelt County Fairgrounds. The event features more than 100 vendors inside with close to a dozen food vendors outside on the fairgrounds.

Entertainment begins outside on the stage and slab at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday with acts continuing throughout the day. Featured performers include the Blackwater Band, and the Vintage Bluegrass Band. There will also be two Medieval village demonstrations at 10:30 a.m. and 1:45 p.m. The Peanut Olympics for children ages 4-10 starts at 1 p.m. Their will be two age categories and several fun games to play. Everyone gets a small prize of candy and winners receive ribbons. There is no fee to enter.

On Sunday, entertainment begins at 11 a.m. with acts continuing throughout the day. Be sure to wear your dancing shoes as Will Bannister and the Modern Day Ramblers take the stage at 3 p.m. with their two-step country music. Junkyard Rhino will also perform at 1:30 p.m. and a Medieval village demonstration will be held at 2:30 p.m.

The full slate of sponsors of the 42nd Peanut Valley Festival include: EDF Renewable Energy, Hampton Farms, Yucca Telecom, First Financial Credit Union, Alta Terra, Xcel Energy and the New Mexico Peanut Grower’s Association.

For more information, contact the Roosevelt County Chamber of Commerce at (800) 635- 8036 or get the full schedule at

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