It’s been nearly a decade since Michelle Cozzaglio and her husband Tony, wanted to bring offbeat events to the masses.
The duo are the masterminds behind “The Oddities & Curiosities Expo,” which returns to Albuquerque on Saturday, March 5, at Expo New Mexico.
The festival was in Albuquerque in March 2020, days before the world shut down.
“It’s been an intense time,” Michelle Cozzaglio says. “We’re enjoying our time back on the road and presenting the show.”
The expo showcases various types of unusual and eclectic vendors, dealers, artists and small businesses, featuring items such as taxidermy, Halloween- and horror-inspired artwork, sculptures, jewelry, odd antiques, and handcrafted oddities like beautifully framed butterflies and unusual bugs.
Many vendors offer impressive and interactive displays. All merchandise and collectibles are available for purchase.
Cozzaglio says there are over 150 vendors from around the country participating in this year’s show.
“We feel like we’re near a normal show again,” she says. “Last year, the cities we went to, we had limited capacities. This year, we are following all the guidelines and want the visitors to feel safe. We still strongly recommend that everyone wears a mask because we’re going to be grouped together.”
Cozzaglio is amazed to how fast the show has grown over the years.
She’s always excited to see the range of demographics that the expo pulls in.
“We always wanted to have something for everyone,” she says. “All of our vendors are mixed so that visitors will get a chance to see it all.”
In addition to attending and purchasing some of the items for sale, there is an opportunity for guests to see “The World’s Largest Traveling Freak Show” for an extra $5 for adults in advance, $7 day of.
Cozzaglio says humans are often attracted to the odd, strange and unusual.
“We have become accustomed to the physical makeup in which most animals are born, but sometimes Mother Nature throws a curve ball and creates a mystery,” she says. “This show is not only entertaining, but educational. This is a walk-through booth with no specific entry times. It is very tasteful and appropriate for all ages.”
For those intrigued in taxidermy, there will be a “Two-Headed Duckling Taxidermy Class” which costs $235 per person. The class will be lead by Heather Clark of Sleeping Sirens.
Cozzaglio says guests will build a two-headed ducking mount from scratch.
“Nothing was killed for the sake of the class or the expo,” she says. “We want to create a strange, but fun time for everyone.”