It’s not Spring in El Paso until millions of Mexican Poppies begin to blanket the Franklin Mountains in Northeast El Paso.

To celebrate, the El Paso Museum of Archaeology is inviting the public to their 12th annual Poppy Festival Saturday, March 31 from 10am to 4pm. This year’s free event will have hands-on activities from different community organizations. Houdini, the hawk from the El Paso Zoo, will also make an appearance. The Downtown Art and Farmers Market will move to the museum grounds for the fest (The Anthony Street location will be closed). In addition, the National Border Patrol Museum will be open for visitors to learn about the history of the United States Border Patrol.


The museum features 14,000 years of prehistory in El Paso, the greater Southwest, and northern Mexico.

“The Poppy Fest provides the community with opportunities to learn about conservation and our environment while taking advantage of the natural beauty of El Paso’s Franklin Mountains,” said El Paso Museum of Archaeology Director Jeff Romney.

The poppies date back to decades, however, their origin is still a mystery with several theories about how they got there. The most popular story is that the US Army planted the seeds which eventually were scattered by winds. Another theory is that a rich woman spread the seeds as a memorial to her late husband. The official story has never been proven.

Free parking for the Poppy Fest will be at Cohen Stadium and shuttle buses will run from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Parking will not be allowed at the Museum of Archaeology or the Border Patrol Museum.

El Paso 411 🌼