Anyone who strolls The University Of New Mexico pathways this time of year is well-accustomed to the annual student tradition of Hanging of the Greens that dates back to the 1930s. On Dec. 1, at 5:45 p.m., the UNM campus will once again be adorned with luminarias that line each building and residence hall, ready to awe its onlookers.

The spectacle of the 13,000 farolito displays draws in many students and locals to walk along the well-lit path and partake in the many festivities. Members of Mortar Board, the UNM premier senior student honor society, dress up as elves and Santa Claus and sing Christmas carols to serenade the march around campus.

The community of students, faculty, alumni, and Albuquerque residents first assemble in front of the UNM Bookstore, where they start their evening trek to University House to deliver a wreath to President Stokes’ front door. Lobo Louie and Lucy always make an appearance, too.

The event’s end will include a reception at Hodgin Hall. Carolers are likely to walk away with their hands full of free posole and hot chocolate, and if they return in the morning, they may take with them some of the lingering luminarias on campus to decorate their own homes.

The community is invited and attendees are encouraged to bring an unwrapped children's book to place under the tree at Hodgin Hall to donate to the UNM Children’s Hospital.

At night, the community of students, faculty, alumni, and Albuquerque residents assemble in front of the UNM Bookstore. Members of Mortar Board dress up as Christmas elves and join Mr. and Mrs. Santa Claus in the parade and chorus of Christmas carols, as they all march around campus. University President, Garnett Stokes, Lobo Louie and Lucy always make an appearance. 

When the paraders reach University House, the Mortar Board elves leave a wreath at President Stokes’s front door. Further on, carolers are greeted with free posole and hot chocolate at Hodgin Hall. In the spirit of giving, anyone can take the luminarias from campus the next morning to decorate their own homes.

UNM organizations can sign up ahead of time to deck their own halls here.