Trails & Rails: Arts & Heritage in Valencia County
Group seeks participants in collaborative promotion
|Harvey House Museum is one of Valencia County's Cultural Treasures|
|Trains are a big part of Valencia County History|
Two dedicated Tomé artists are collaborating with the greater Valencia County community to prepare a self-guided tour of places of interest throughout the county.
Armed with a grant from the New Mexico Arts and the National Endowment for the Arts, a pamphlet titled “TRAILS AND RAILS: Arts and Heritage in Valencia County” will be available for wide distribution by September.
The group is searching for cultural or art locations to be included in the guide now being developed as part of a grant.
Jan Pacifico and Anne-Marie Werner–Smith already have gotten a lot of support and enthusiastic commitments from people and groups around the area. But they want to be sure to include everyone they can.
“To be eligible you must be an art or heritage location within Valencia County, keep regular hours in which you are open to the public and collect data for the grant,” they said.
In exchange, “your location will be described and placed on a map in a brochure for wide distribution throughout New Mexico to promote cultural tourism and cultural economic development in Valencia County.”
The brochure will be a self-guided tour of Valencia County, focused on Belen, Tomé and Los Lunas .
|Dozens of artists and artisans plus several galleries call Valencia County home.|
The brochure is the first of three phases of the project envisioned by these two. The project grew out of a day at the state legislature attended by a group from Valencia County including Pacifico and Werner-Smith. “It was culture day and among the displays and booths was one for New Mexico Arts,” said Pacifico. Since Tomé Gallery is a member of the Fiber Arts Trail, Jan asked if the state group was going to do another booklet or other such project. They were told that there was nothing planned for Fiber Arts Trail but that “we could do our own trail. The deadline to apply was the next day,” Jan recalls. So, she asked that they keep them informed of future such projects. A few days later, she and Anne-Marie received follow-up emails saying the state would go through a second round in calling for proposals and they had two weeks to submit the application.
“We went to places around the county…. The three Chambers of Commerce, Through the Flower, Belen Art League, Tome, of course, The Harvey House, the Heritage Center in Los Lunas, the University of New Mexico Valencia County…. Everyone really wanted to get in on this project,” Jan said.
Subsequent phases include a booklet giving more detail descriptions of each site, and eventually an expanded tour with connections with the Railrunner and shuttle service.
But for now, the group is facing a daunting deadline since the self-guided tour and the brochure must be completed by September.
Deadline to apply to be included is July 15. You may obtain an application for participation by calling the Tomé Gallery at 565-0556, Jan Pacifico at 866-0582 or Anne-Marie Werner-Smith at 869-9133.
|Trains Continue to play a big role in Belen today.|