NMiF discusses new safety additions at Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

This week, New Mexico in Focus looks at the Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta, which takes flight in just over a week. The event is one of the highlights of the year and a huge tourism draw for the state. But this year, the Fiesta will include some new additions like undercover officers and metal detectors.

Host Gene Grant went live on Facebook this week with Balloon Fiesta officials to talk about the changes and what spectators need to know. NMIF shares some of the key takeaways, then The Line opinion panelists weigh in on what it will take for the increased security efforts to be a success.

Correspondent Russell Contreras sits down with one of the key figures in New Mexico’s rise to prominence in the mixed martial arts (MMA) world: Greg Jackson. One of the founders of The Jackson Wink Academy, Jackson has helped train the likes of title winners Jon “Bones” Jones and Holly Holm. The two talk about why MMA is so popular in our state, as well as how Jackson is working to improve his community outside the octagon.

Gene Grant and The Line opinion panel also spend time discussing a new report that outlines the true extent of the state’s behavioral health crisis, and what state leaders are doing to bridge the gap between patients and providers. They also offer insight on the impact to New Mexico’s congressional delegation now that the U.S. House of Representatives has decided to open an impeachment inquiry into President Trump.

New Mexico PBS’ one-hour public affairs show New Mexico in Focus regularly airs Friday at 7 p.m. and repeats Sunday at 7 a.m. on Chanel 5.1, and Saturdays at 5 p.m. and Sundays at 3 p.m. on Channel 9.1, except during pledge drives.

Greg Jackson, mixed martial arts trainer, Jackson Wink MMA Training Academy
Allen Tetreault, public safety director, Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta
Tom Garrity, The Garrity Group, Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta

Russell Contreras

Line Panelists
Merritt Allen, Vox Optima
Michael Bird, Public Health Consultant
Jeffrey Candelaria, Konnection Now & KKOB radio
Laura Sanchez-Rivét, Affirm

Gene Grant

New Mexico in Focus is the New Mexico PBS prime-time news magazine show covering the events, issues and people that are shaping life in New Mexico and the Southwest.

NMiF takes a multi-layered look at social, political, economic health, education and art issues, and explores them in-depth with a critical eye to give them context beyond the “news of the moment.”

The producer of New Mexico in Focus is Matt Grubs, with Kathy Wimmer, associate producer. The NM PBS Public Affairs executive producer is Kevin McDonald.

Funding for New Mexico in Focus is provided by the McCune Charitable Foundation and viewers like you.

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