Press Releases


Pat Garret Western Heritage Festival

February 2, 2019

Rio Grande Theatre

Las Cruces, New Mexico

 Brought to you by the Dona Ana Historical Society and the Rio Grande Theatre.

 Explore the life, controversies, and legacy of Pat Garrett, the Wild West's most famous lawman. Best remembered for killing Billy the Kid, Garrett lived in Dona Ana County for 12 years, servedas county sheriff for 4 years, and was killed here on February 29, 1908.

Friday, February 1        5:00 pm

 - Gallery Opening. A collection of images from the early days of movie theaters in Las Cruces. FREE

Saturday, February 2   12:00 pm

 - Sing the Legend. A live musical presentation by Dan Crow, John Wood, and Scott Galbreath. Crow and company will perform 9 historic western songs. For each song, the presenters will give a history of the song, including information such as the artists who created the work, what historic western characters or events are addressed in the song, the circumstances in which it was first performed, and the popular reception.

FREE Songs include: The Owlhoot Trail, Jesse James, Sam Bass & the Wampus Cat,Billy the Kid, Joel & Josie, Lawdog lament, and Sidekicks & Saddles Pals.


1:30 pm - Movie: Four Faces West, 1948, directed by Alfred E. Green, based on the 'Paso por aqui' by Eugene Manlove Rhodes the Cowboy Chronicler. Charles Bickford as Garrett. FREE

4:00 pm - Killing Pat Garrett. Presentation by David Thomas of the events leading to the killing of Pat Garrett on February 29, 1908. FREE

4:30 pm - Wayne Brazel Preliminary Examination. A reenactment by actors of the March 4, 1908, courtroom examination that led to Brazel's indictment for killing Garrett. The reenactment uses the actual words of the courtroom hearing.



5:00 pm - The Wayne Brazel Trial. Follow-up presentation by David Thomas ofthe Brazel's trial and the outcome. FREE

6:00 pm - Querida Esposa: Travel Back in Time on a Journey of Love.




Letters a presentation by Karla Steen, who will read, peruse, and discuss the affectionate and informative letters written by Patrick F. Garrett to his wife, Apolinaria Guiterrez-Garrett between the years 1889 and 1896. These letters, beautifully scripted to Apolinaria and the Garrett children, show Pat Garrett the man, rather than the legend. These letters demonstrate his deep efforts to stay connected to his "Dear Wife" and family throughout his daily life on the road as he fought to make ends meet.



7:30 pm - History of Movie Theaters in Las Cruces & Billy the Kid (1930)Movie. Brief history of the theaters of Las Cruces and introduction to the filmBilly the Kid. The origin!Unexpected End of Formulaal world premiere of thefilm was held in the Rio Grande Theatre in Las Cruces on October 12, 1930.Billy the Kid was directed by King Vidor, and stars Johnny Mack Brown asBilly the Kid, and Wallace Beery as Garrett.