Annual World's Largest Matanza is cancelled - Albuquerque Journal

Annual World’s Largest Matanza is cancelled

The annual World’s Largest Matanza has been canceled this year due to the COVID-19 pandemic. (News-Bulletin File Photo)

BELEN – As many expected, the Hispano Chamber of Valencia County has canceled its annual fundraiser – the World’s Largest Matanza – due to COVID-19 restrictions.

The event has been held on the last Saturday of January for 20 years.

Julie Romero Benavidez, HCVC board president, said the Matanza has always been known for two things – tradition and supporting local students.

“Everyone knows the chamber promotes the Matanza as an event that preserves our traditions, but the other biggest objective is to raise as much money as we can to give it all away,” Benavidez said.

Every year, after the books close for the all-day, all-you-can-eat event, the chamber sets aside enough seed money to buy the 20-25 pigs it will need for the next year’s Matanza.

“The number of scholarships we can award is determined by what we can make on that one day,” she said.

For the class of 2020, the chamber was able to award 82 $500 scholarships.

“The good news for the last two years is the Matanza was so successful we could award a scholarship to everyone who applied,” Benavidez said. “We have an in-depth process of scoring all the applications, which we went through, but in the end, everyone won.”

When the scholarships were awarded last spring, the COVID-19 pandemic was going strong, so the HCVC board made the decision to hold back $20,000 for scholarships in 2021, knowing the Matanza would most likely need to be canceled.

“Because we aren’t having a Matanza, we are doing a scholarship drive this year,” she said.

There are a few different ways the community can support the scholarship drive, Benavidez said.

One way is to directly sponsor one or more scholarships. There are five sponsorship levels – from Bronze at $500, which is one scholarship, up to Premier at $10,000, which is 20 scholarships.

Businesses or individuals can sponsor a scholarship, she said, and all sponsors will get a “Piggy Plaque,” custom engraved by Sisneros Bros. in Belen.

“They make the award plaques every year for the different contest categories; I’m sure everyone has seen them, shaped like a pig,” she said. “They will engrave them with the sponsor name and number of scholarships they sponsored.

“If you don’t have an extra $500 laying around, we will be selling raffle tickets for $15 each.”

The raffle prizes are a “Dumpster” custom grill made and donated by AC Disposal Services with metal artwork by Sisneros Bros.; a cooking disco donated by Sisneros Bros., and four half pigs, donated by Kyzer Farms.

Benavidez said a “Dumpster” grill was raffled off at the 2020 Matanza and raised about $6,000, resulting in 12 scholarships alone.

Home » News » New Mexico News » Annual World’s Largest Matanza is cancelled

Insert Question Legislature form in Legis only stories

Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email

taboola desktop

ABQjournal can get you answers in all pages


Questions about the Legislature?
Albuquerque Journal can get you answers
Email addresses are used solely for verification and to speed the verification process for repeat questioners.
Bubblegum and Jeff: Students name fish before releasing endangered ...
ABQnews Seeker
Montessori Elementary students joined ecology experts ... Montessori Elementary students joined ecology experts on Tuesday morning to learn about water use and endangered species through hands-on activities at the Rio Grande ...
Lindsay Fattor named director of operations at Rainbow Ryders
ABQnews Seeker
BRIEFCASE: She has been with Rainbow ... BRIEFCASE: She has been with Rainbow Ryders since 2015.
New Mexico court upholds Native American actor convictions
ABQnews Seeker
SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) -- The ... SANTA FE, N.M. (AP) -- The New Mexico Court of Appeals has upheld the rape and voyeurism convictions of Native American actor and film ...
Blue Cross and Blue Shield of New Mexico names ...
ABQnews Seeker
In Smith-Leslie's new role, which began ... In Smith-Leslie's new role, which began Monday, she will oversee BCBSNM's "strategic direction and overall operations for the New Mexico Medicaid division."
Albuquerque Poet Sara Daniele Rivera wins First Book Award
ABQnews Seeker
NEW YORK (AP) -- A Cuban-Peruvian ... NEW YORK (AP) -- A Cuban-Peruvian poet from New Mexico has won the Academy of American Poets' First Book Award. Sara Daniele Rivera will ...
One dead in Northeast apartment complex fire
ABQnews Seeker
One person died in a Northeast ... One person died in a Northeast apartment complex that caught on fire early Tuesday. 
Migrants start fire at Mexico detention center, killing 40
ABQnews Seeker
MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Migrants fearing ... MEXICO CITY (AP) -- Migrants fearing deportation set mattresses ablaze at an immigration detention center in northern Mexico, starting a fire that killed at ...
Arriba Birria! 5 birria spots around Albuquerque
ABQnews Seeker
5 places to get your birria ... 5 places to get your birria fix
Smashing Pumpkins to play Isleta Amphitheater on Aug. 13
ABQnews Seeker
'Today' is the greatest day. The ... 'Today' is the greatest day. The Smashing Pumpkins announced its 26-date tour and there will be a stop at Isleta Amphitheater on Aug. 13. ...