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Hot licks and crawfish: Weekend blues fest in Madrid features Cajun-style food

Spice things up this weekend with some hot blues and lots of zesty crawfish at the ninth annual CrawDaddy Blues Fest in Madrid.

The Mine Shaft Tavern’s popular music and food extravaganza returns on Saturday, May 21, and Sunday, May 22.

Bands will play continuously on the main stage, inside the big tent on the Madrid Railyard grounds, as well as on the deck and inside the Mine Shaft Tavern.

ven21_ja_20may_crawdadThe musical lineup changes each day, with Cactus Slim & The Goatheads, Rudy Boy Experiment, Felix y Los Gatos, the Gunsels, Partizani Brass Band, Julie & The Blue Suns and Stephanie Hatfield performing on Saturday.

On Sunday, performers will include Iyah, Connie Long & Fast Patsy, CW Ayon, the Shari Puorto Band, Partuzani Brass Band, Key Frances, Chris Dracup & Funk of the West and hONEyhoUSe.

End the evening with a performance by Randy McAllister inside the Mine Shaft Tavern at 8 p.m. Saturday. Jim Almand and The Barbwires will take the same stage Sunday evening.

Catch a convenient ride to and from the event. Trolley-shuttle service will be offered from the New Mexico Rail Runner Express station at N.M. 599 and Interstate 25 to the event for $20 per person round trip or $10 one-way. Pickups are at 12:30 p.m., 1:30 p.m., and 2:30 p.m. Returns are at 6:30 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 8:30 p.m. Reserve your spot by calling 505-310-9838.

Once you reach the event, head to the outdoor kitchen, which will offer crawfish, shrimp, hamburgers, brisket, gumbo and other selections. The Mine Shaft Tavern also will have food available inside for purchase, including green chile crabcakes and crawfish étouffée.

“The food is a big part of it,” Mine Shaft Tavern owner Lori Lindsey said. “I grew up near Galveston (Texas), which is close to Louisiana. We grew up with a lot of Cajun friends. We had fish fries and shrimp fries.”

Crawfish broils also were part of Lindsey’s upbringing, which is why Lindsey had the crawfish driven up from southeastern Texas, for the festival.

“It’s organic seafood or river food,” Lindsey said. “It’s really great. It’s also extremely clean and extremely healthy. Some people say I do them too spicy, so I do try to do some not as spicy. …They always turn out good. We have 1,500 pounds (of crawfish) this year. When we started, our first year, we had 600 pounds. We have also increased (the amount) of our other food too.”