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JAN-FEB 2017

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Page 42 of 51

J A N U A R Y / F E B R U A R Y 2 0 1 7 Jackson Hole, Wyoming, is the perfect jumping-off point for a visit to Grand Tetons. 43 F or many travelers on Route 66, New Mexico marked their introduction to the Southwest. Native American culture blended with the neon signs of hotels and res- taurants inviting travelers to stay and spend their mon- ey. At the Texas border, groups enter New Mexico across a vast prairie that eventually leads to the high desert and adobe villages. e 20-mile stretch of original highway from Glenrio, at the Texas state line, to the tiny town of San Jon is part of the road that John Stein- beck described in " e Grapes of Wrath." From there, the town of Tucum- cari basked in the Mother Road's success. Today, travelers can stay at the pink-stucco Blue Swallow Motel, built in 1939; motor-court garages are located between the rooms, and the lobby gift shop sells souvenirs. e city's Route 66 Photo Museum showcases key sites and events along the Mother Road, and the Art Deco Odeon theater still shows movies. Tee- Pee Curios trading post makes a great photo op and sells kitschy souve- nirs and memorabilia. Back on the road, the Blue Hole of Santa Rosa lies in the middle of the desert, and the aqua waters became an oasis for Route 66 travelers. In Albuquerque, Central Avenue follows the former Route 66 and fea- tures preserved motel courts, diners, vintage neon signs and numerous attractions. Central Avenue connects numerous neighborhoods, includ- ing 100-year-old Nob Hill, where the original Jones Motor Company, a National Historic Landmark, is now Kelly's Brew Pub, with gas station pumps still outside. Another landmark, Skip Maisel's Indian Jewelry and Crafts, off ers wholesale pricing on Native American jewelry. Down the street, the Pueblo Deco KiMo eater celebrates its 90th birthday this year with special events. Heading toward Gallup, groups can order green chili cheeseburgers, a New Mexico staple, at the 66 Pit Stop in Laguna Pueblo. On the state's western edge, Gallup is known as the "Indian Capital of the World." Dur- ing its heyday, Gallup's El Rancho Hotel was where Hollywood stars stayed while shooting fi lms in the area. Its 49er Lounge has served te- quilas and hand-squeezed margaritas for 75 years, and the adjacent res- taurant can seat groups of up to 250 people. "Gallup's decades-old Richardson's Trading Post has an iconic neon sign out front and sells more turquoise than you've probably seen in your lifetime, plus beautiful rugs," said Heather Briganti, communications di- rector for the New Mexico Tourism Department. " ey're also knowl- edgeable about each piece." W W W . N E W M E X I C O . O R G Courtesy New Mexico Tourism Dept. Courtesy New Mexico Tourism Dept. Courtesy KiMo Theatre Santa Rosa Blue Hole Local jewelry 66 R O U T E NEW MEXICO

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