Ready, Set, Love!
It's become a Santa Fe Valentine's Day tradition: Read SFR's Love & Sex issue for inspiration, head to our annual pre-Valentine's Day party to meet someone special, then make a date with said special person for the big day. This year, SFR's party features all the good stuff that we usually bring, including psychics, tarot card readings, the beats of DJ Feathericci, a singles' mingle, photo ops (see below) and delicious food from The Lodge at Santa Fe. New this year is a titillating burlesque performance from local dance troupe Zircus Erotique and, if you like the girls enough, check them out again on Feb. 12 (see below). Admission to our party is only two bucks, and a portion of proceeds benefit the Esperanza Shelter for Battered Families. See? Even when you're getting it on, you can help a good cause.
7-11 pm Wednesday, Feb. 10. $2, includes raffle ticket. The Lodge at Santa Fe, 750 N. St. Francis Drive, 988-5541

Bada Bing, Bada BANG!
BANG! is a curatorial project that floats around Santa Fe to promote both awesome contemporary art and good causes. This Valentine's Day, BANG! presents ♥ This!: Fourteen Artists Take On Valentine's Day, featuring artists Chace Haynes, Tim Jag, Tuscany Wenger, Michael Namingha and others. The exhibit opening offers up delectable edibles, a love lounge and martinis from Cupid's Cowgirls. Proceeds benefit the Esperanza Shelter for Battered Families, and the event is co-sponsored by SFR. Art was never quite this alluring.
5-8 pm Friday, Feb. 12. Free. Through March 5.
Jay Etkin Gallery, 703 Camino de la Familia, 550-0064

Hubba Hubba!
Zircus Erotique's Heartaches and Heart-ons cranks the heat this Valentine's with an extravaganza almost too tantalizing and too scandalous to handle. The feature-length burlesque show promises a little bit of sugar along with heaping spoonfuls of three-alarm spice. Of course, everyone will need a little release afterward, so thank Aphrodite that one of Santa Fe's favorite DJs, Feathericci, is at the helm for an all-night dance party.
8 pm Friday, Feb. 12. $10-$15. The Lodge at Santa Fe, 750 N. St. Francis Drive, 310-3464

Love Comes in Many Guises
Tainted Love: A Drag Show d'Amour is the cheekily wild extravaganza from Santa Fe's premier gender benders, the fabulous Victoria Vail & the Queens of Drag. Two raucous performances benefit the Southwest CARE Center, an organization that provides comprehensive care for northern New Mexicans affected by HIV and AIDS. Come for the glamour, but stay for the party when DJ TNT sets the dance floor on fire.
8:30 pm Friday, Feb. 12. $20. 9 pm Saturday, Feb. 13. $10-$15. RainbowVision, 500 Rodeo Road, 428-7777

Knockin' Boots
Two-step the holiday away with the annual Cowboy's Sweetheart Ball, a benefit for Learning Horse, Inc., an equestrian youth-outreach program. The shindig is an opportunity to dust off your old boots, don your favorite Western threads and weigh down your fingers with as much turquoise as your poor digits can bear. Do-si-do into cow-poke heaven with the Modern Swing Pioneers and Floyd Domino, who set the mood with serenades for the forlorn wrangler inside us all.
6-10 pm Saturday, Feb. 13. $50. Scottish Rite Temple Ballroom, 463 Paseo de Peralta, 982-0462

Bring the Hankies
In Mendelssohn and the Maiden, the Santa Fe Pro Musica Chamber Orchestra presents Franz Schubert's "Death and the Maiden" (also known as "String Quartet No. 14 in D Minor," but the former is far more evocative). The piece is the composer's response to news, at the age of 31, that he was terminally ill. A testament to Schubert's genius, "Death and the Maiden" is a grand and passionate outpouring perfect for a weepy Valentine's sobfest.
6 pm Saturday, Feb. 13. 3 pm Sunday, Feb. 14. $15-$60. St. Francis Auditorium, New Mexico Museum of Art,
107 W. Palace Ave., 988-4640

A Matter of the Corazón
This year, Valentine's Day at Corazón is a subdued, refined affair. Nah! Just kidding. Melanie Moore's Sex On Vinyl V brings Brooklyn-based DJ Stadenco to town to throw down a seriously rocking affair. Put on your rose-colored shades and shake it like you just don't care. Enjoy two DJs, four tables and a night full of romance set to the best house, techno, break-beat and electronic tunes.
8 pm Saturday,
Feb. 13. $10. Corazón, 401 S. Guadalupe St., 983-4559

Choo-Choo Choose Me!
Romance your sweetheart on the Santa Fe Southern Railway's Valentine's Train. Think of the engine's hypnotic rhythm. Imagine the sheer, unrelenting power of its locomotion. Pair that with a cool, crisp glass of afternoon champagne and the naughty delight of fine chocolate, and you've got yourself romance in an instant.
2-4:30 pm Sunday, Feb. 14. $40-$50. Santa Fe Southern Railway, 410 S. Guadalupe St., 989-8600

I Wanna Write You a Letter
Santa Fe actors Alaina Zachary and William Verderber present a reading of Love Letters, the play by AR Gurney. The two actors sit side-by-side and read selections from 50 years' worth of love letters, from second grade to middle age, that discusses their hopes, dreams, ambitions and desires. The play is a charming, heartfelt and often funny investigation into why we love who we love.
4-6 pm Sunday, Feb. 14. Free. Collected Works Bookstore, 202 Galisteo St., 988-4226

Thrills, Chills and Dinner
At its third annual Feast of Fools—Love is a Circus fundraiser, Wise Fool New Mexico's daredevil jugglers, acrobats and contortionists throw the shindig to end all shindigs. Strength, agility, poise, grace and wicked charm are on the menu alongside scrumptious delectables by Walter Burke Catering (including a sculpture made of pure chocolate)—a perfect Valentine's date.
6:30 pm Sunday, Feb. 14. $60-$120. Center for Contemporary Arts, 1050 Old Pecos Trail, 992-2588

The Heart Wants What It Wants
In Harold and Maude, the coming-of-age-story-cum-romantic-comedy sees the despondent young Harold fall for the feisty septuagenarian Maude, who breathes life into Harold's stuffy, upper-class confines as she expands his consciousness as well as his heart. The Lensic Performing Arts Center presents a special showing of the classic on the big screen.
7 pm Sunday, Feb. 14. $5. Lensic Performing Arts Center, 211 W. San Francisco St., 988-1234