Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Zynga Game Network Wins Defense Contacts


Recently, the guidance systems for many US military aircraft have come under fire for their ability to be easily detected by the enemy due to the signals emitted by them being unencrypted.  As hard as it is to believe, the same technology used to encrypt your online purchases or the signal from your cordless house phone was overlooked by the Department of Defense.   While many of the unencrypted  systems are used in unmanned drones, some have made their way onto other manned  military flights.   Naturally, everyone is scurrying to correct the oversight as quickly as possible.
In to the picture steps online gaming giant Zynga, creator of Facebook's Mafia Wars, Cafe World and a passel more.  It is rumored among Washington sources that Zynga has received big defense dollars to not only design a new user interface for the controls, but streamline the military payroll systems.  The new guidance technology will be fully encrypted and easily operated by just about anyone.  At the same time Zynga will overhaul the accounting department so that military personnel will be paid through Paypal, and a new incentive system will award "Reward Points" for successful missions.
May I please point out that both "Zynga" and "Paypal" are copyrighted trademarks of their respective  organizations.  While this is just a simple satire piece I have elected to take this point very seriously and issue a pre-apology to Zynga in the adjoining video.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

All The Whos...


If it was Dr. Seuss commenting on the Vikings steamrollering the Cowboys Sunday in the NFL Playoffs it might have been, "All the Whos down in Whoville the small and the tall, couldn't believe their great Dallas team had really dropped the ball!"  (apologies to the Dr.).  Let's get one thing straight, I'm a Green Bay Packer fan, but watching Brett Farve at 40 years old do what he does gives me a modicum of hope that I can get better as I age rather than just older.  Watching the game from an Austin sports pub packed with raging Dallas fans was worth the price of the, well...chicken strips.  At first, the frenzied Cowboy crowd cheered wildly for every Dallas play no matter how small.  They went crazy for a two yard run pounding on the bar, clapping and screaming their heads off.  When the Vikings scored the first time the sound level in the room dropped by 10db (decibels, a unit used to indicate the volume of a sound).  The second time Minnesota scored it became eerily quiet.

Fortunately, I was seated in between two older, placid Cowboy fans.  We actually had an interesting conversation.   But the lady in gold hooped earrings and  her boyfriend stole the show rooting for Dallas.   All he could do was pound  on the bar and scream "Go long",  when Tony Romo could'nt even hold on to the ball  much less muster a throw.  But his girlfriend  was the real treat.  She pounded on the bar, stood up on the bar rail hollering "Go, and beat these  mother-f**kers."  That was the real show in the room.


It's mighty hard to believe that the Cowboy faithfuls who assembled  to watch Tony Romo circle the wagons actually thought that Dallas had a chance to win this ballgame.  Emotions replaced logic.  It wasn't a matter of watching to see who won, as much as watching to see how they won.  Mr. Farve in his own retirement speech (one of them and let's not go there) said that he had nothing left to give.  I'll take experience, savvy and pure, raw ability every time, which Brett brings to the table  when it really counts as he has proven over and over again.  Had no one  present watched any NFL games for the past  19 years?


And despite the cool demeanor  a quarterback has to present on the field, you can't help but wonder that in the back of Romo's mind is "Yikes!  I'm playing against THE  Brett Farve who I grew up idolizing!".  It's got to have some effect  even if it's buried deep in his subconscious.  The biggest job in the off season is for the NFL.  First, finding better handling arrangements for the refs' seeing eye dogs during the game and secondly, figuring out how to stop CBS from dictating game times to protect the CBS staple "60 Minutes" .  You've got the goods NFL!  I suspect you can find a more cooperative customer if you try hard enough.



Every Dallas fan there left muttering , "The Saints will get 'em!".  Here we go again.

Thursday, January 07, 2010

New al-Qaida Device Stymies Airport Security


First, it was shoes that terrorists used to hide explosives and now they have turned to belts.  One such device made by al-Qaida is throwing airline security into a frenzy because it is almost impossible to detect the new "Belt Bomb".



A source close to the industry who wished to remain anonymous said that even though the exact dimensions are classified, the explosive device is rumored to be close to 22 feet in length and weighs a mere 1500 pounds.  Our source noted that this could be why security is targeting radical Islamic body builders and professional weight lifters...especially those that have problems fitting in the middle seat.


Even the famous bomb sniffing dogs are having difficulty with detection.  In the above photo the dog quickly "tagged" this one and moved on to the next passenger in line, without indicating it had found anything.  The Obama Administration urged all Americans to be on the lookout for unusually large. powerful male al-Qaida members entering the US with a 22 foot bomb strapped to their ass. They also urged if one is spotted that authorities be contacted immediately.

Friday, January 01, 2010

God Almighty Issues Credit Card

God Almighty Issues Credit Card - Under the current economic conditions many of the larger banks and credit card companies have been busy raising rates and fees in anticipation of the beginning of stricter federal controls.  This to help insure higher profits for corporate officers and stockholders as they continue to put it to their customers with consumers paying more for help managing their money. 

Sensing that something had to be done, The Lord has announced a plan for a credit card where you do not have to repay the borrowed funds.  Holders are expected to follow basic policies and procedures including not stealing, taking His name in vain, coveting thy neighbors ox or ass plus a far reaching program that includes many others.



This is the first major financial move The Lord has undertaken since Jesus Christ overturned the money changers tables at the rear of the temple, obviously dating back to Biblical times.  The first card issued was an honorary gold card presented to Evangelist Oral Roberts.  Reported to be first in line to apply for the card, named simply "The God Card", was Pope Benedict, Rev. Jesse Jackson and the Rev. Al Sharpton.  The application process will continue through an ongoing operation.


Already the frenzy to convert to Christianity has begun around the world to allow non-believers to become cardholders.  Never before have such large quantities of Islamic, Buddhists, atheists and others been converting and are clamoring for the first of it's kind credit card venture.


One change has already taken place in the design of the project.  The "Expiration Date" has been eliminated to relieve undo anxiety in cardholders.

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Salvation Army Abandons Christ

We've all seen the bell ringers with red kettles swinging on the sidewalks of retailers and malls. Sometimes we even pause to stuff in a little cash and quickly move on. Most folks know that the collection is organized by the Salvation Army, a Christian outreach mission. The other day I passed a bell ringer and really looked. There was the red kettle, bell and even an attempt at a Santa suite but no where were to be found the words "Chistmas" or "Christ" or even "Jesus" on the kettle or signage which read in one corner "The Reason For The Season". What was the reason? Gifts? Santa?

I realized I didn't know all that much about the Salvation Army so I went to their website the next time I was at the keyboard. Sure enough they were pretty much as I imagined. The Mission statement for the Army reads:

The Salvation Army, an international movement, is an evangelical part of the universal Christian Church. Its message is based on the Bible. Its ministry is motivated by the love of God. Its mission is to preach the gospel of Jesus Christ and to meet human needs in His name without discrimination.

I don't know about you, but Christmas seems like it might be a good opportunity to "preach the gospel of Jesus Christ"; at the very least mention his name. If you explore the site a little more you'll find information about this "Christmas Charity":

The "miracle" of Christmas is repeated over and over again through the joy of caring and sharing.The traditional red kettle is an integral part of the Christmas scene, with millions of dollars donated each year to aid needy families, seniors, and the homeless, in keeping with the spirit of the season.

Donations provide Christmas dinners, clothing, and toys for families in need. Financial assistance also helps with basic necessities, along with seasonal aid. Families of prisoners often are included.

Volunteers distribute gifts to shut-ins in hospitals and nursing homes, and shelters are open for sit-down dinners. The Salvation Army endeavors to bring spiritual light and love to those it serves at Christmas so that the real meaning of the season is not forgotten.

Many families receive aid over a period of months after the Christmas season as well, people struggling with difficult family, emotional, or employment problems.

Here, they toss "Christmas" around like a tennis ball. Why do they clam-up in public? It seems to me like a big "MERRY CHRISTMAS" somewhere might be in order (there's at lot of room to stencil on that red kettle). And also a sign explaining that even though it's Christians who are collecting the money, it's distributed to anyone in need...Islamics, Buddists, Atheists...even those from Area 51. Talk about a PR bonanza for Christ...or as we like to call it in polite Christian circles "testimony". I've written to the Army asking if they'd like to respond and as of this Christmas Eve they have not.  It just seems kind of strange that an organization that has done so much good would throw the Boss under the bus, especially at a time when we're celebrating His birth.

Thursday, May 01, 2008

Trouble Right Here in River City

The new Ruidoso Visitor's Guide was just released. It's a well-intended guide to the Ruidoso scene for the visitor and tourist. However it pays a great disservice to some of the local merchants listed in the guide. Lets look at why.

This is all about websites and internet marketing. First of all there are two basic kinds of websites. The first is the vanity website. This is some type of presence on the web where the only people that ever run across it are the ones you tell. It doesn't show up well, if at all in any of the search engines. It exists just for the sole purpose of being able to say "Of course we're on the web"!

The second type is a working website that does show up in the search engines and brings new traffic and sales to your business on a daily basis. It can result in thousands or even hundreds of thousands of dollars of new business annually, and can easily eclipse the input from print media, yellow pages and outdoor signage in importance to a businesses' development. If you fall into this category, or ever hope to be in it, listen up.

As a public service, the Ruidoso Visitor's Guide publishes a "Lodgers Guide" at the back of the book. This is a free service to the lodging community sponsored in part by the publisher, Canyon Productions who sells ad space in the guide and the villages "advertising agency" TKO Marketing who receives part of it's funding from the Ruidoso Lodgers Tax Committee. That being said how could a free listing possibly be bad? If you have a working website it could easily be a nightmare, costing you hundreds...if not thousands of dollars.

The guide publishers have chosen to truncate or eliminate the "www" in the listing to your website. No problem, right? If I type:
yourdomain.com
or
www.yourdomain.com
the same page show up. It's the same thing, right? It is to you or any of your website visitors. If you have a vanity website it means nothing to you. But if yours is a vital ecommerce working website this could cost you a lot of money.

Unfortunately the above example is not seen by the search engines quite the same way as a human might. The search engines see two different websites, each with their own set of links and traffic. Part of the equation for a working website is to accumulate links and traffic to be ranked higher by the search engines because...they like that kind of thing and reward you with a higher position in search engine results.

This is a slight over simplification, but let's say that a bunch of people access your website as:
yourdomain.com. All the work you've spent seeing your www.yourdoamin.com rise to the top of the search engines through link and traffic building could be cut in half and your site starts to plummet to the bottom of the pile on the search engines. And that's the best case scenario. The search engines deplore duplicate content. While it would be rare, they could ban both sites from the search engines. Again rare, but I've seen it happen.

What most probably would happen is the search engines would arbitrarily eliminate one of the the sites from their listings. Would it be the site most important to you, with all the links and associated traffic? It may or it may be the lesser used entry. There's no way of knowing. You're at their mercy and once they decide it's very hard to change their minds. The point is this, why put yourself in this situation to begin with? For a "free" ad that may cost you more money than you make from it? For this year, you're on your own. But at the end of the year, when you're asked to make changes to your ad copy make sure whatever standard you've selected is the one that shows up in print.

I explored this point last year with Brad Treptow, then with the Chamber of Commerce who had volunteered to proof read the current book prior to publication. I also spoke with Joaquin Falcone of TKO advertising who pledged to be diligent in "...making the guide bullet-proof". Both understood the concerns as I've explained them above. While Brad is no longer with the chamber, Mr. Falcone has failed to provide the diligence he promised in showing the slightest concern for one of his clients...the Village of Ruidoso.

Wouldn't it be nice if all these entities had some guidance?

Incidentally, as of this date the www.ruidosovisitorguide.com featured prodominantly throughout the guide is a page parked with godaddy. My kinda town!

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Deer Friends

Ruidoso, New Mexico is a resort community that relies heavily (well almost completely) on tourism as our local "industry". In the summer it's horse racing and the spectacular mountains and pines of the Lincoln National Forest. In the winter it's snow skiing at nearby Ski Apache. Season this with a dash of artists and galleries, a handful of restaurants and shops, a pound of casinos, a number of golf courses and you've got one enchanting community.
One of the most unusual aspects for some when visiting Ruidoso is that deer are protected inside the village limits. This means a close to nature experience and some of the animals have become quite tame. People feed them and children squeal with delight. Everyone that visits leaves with at least a half dozen pictures in the camera of...deer.
The deer are somewhat of a hazard for local drivers, especially at dusk. With a reasonable amount of alertness, it is possible to navigate around them with a surprisingly few deceased Bambis on the roadside. At a recent village council meeting it was suggested that the village ban the sale of deer corn, a dried corn sold in 50 pound sacks, to control the feeding of and lessen the number of deer hanging around town for dinner. The only upside to this notion is that corn is very bad for younger deer as they have not yet developed the abilty to properly digest it. Other than that, the deer eat far more than corn. Try a bag of apples or carrots. Gone! In fact they'd love you for a box of Captain Crunch...box and all! Banning the sale of deer corn in all of it's infinite wisdom would do only one thing, change their diet.
And think of the implications of the deer corn situation. Soon, the illegal trafficking of deer corn would spring up like a weed. Routes into Ruidoso would pass from west Texas and south of the border. Prices would skyrocket and many would make windfall profits from illegal deer corn smuggling. Sweet corn would fly off store shelves destined to dry out at illicit deer corn labs. Who knows, you could end up with one in your neighborhood. And think of the unsavory types that would drift into the area..."Hey kid...I got deer corn"! Niblets would cease to exsist.
This suggestion to ban deer corn really was made at a Ruidoso Village Council meeting. The next question is what do we target after this? Peas? Green beans? If you want to eat vegetables in Ruidoso, you'd better be planting a garden, and fence it well...so the deer don't eat it!

Friday, June 01, 2007

Historically Unaware

This weekend in Ruidoso we'll be attending a performance of the Tennessee Three...several original members of Johnny Cash's backup band. It promises to be an interesting evening.

Back during my college career, I majored in Radio and Television Production. Consequently, I received my share of assignments to interview entertainers in town for a performance. I had the opportunity to interview the sappy, ballad ridden Bread, the Carpenters (Karen could not put down this huge salami sub sandwich long enough to answer most questions) and Johnny Cash. Yes, I knew who Johnny was alright. The opportunity to interview Johnny presented one of the most interesting opportunities...that I just was not equipped to handle.

As I entered the Green Room at the Southern Illinois Coliseum there was Johnny seated on one end of a long couch. Next to him, in the middle was June Carter Cash and on the other end was the Matriarch of the clan, Mother Maybelle Carter. A whole couchful of pure, Country history and legend was sitting right, smack in front of me waiting for my probing, insightful questions. I relied on the questions I had prepared for Johnny, upset at myself for not anticipating more.

These days, I occasionally reflect upon the opportunity I had and let go. I'll be thinking of that during the Tennessee Three performance.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

Ten Tips For Successful Vacation Rental Owners


If you own a second home that's bound for the vacation rental market, you may wish to take note of some tips from some of the most successful vacation rental owners.

One...what's in a name? Everything! Come up with a unique, memorable name for your property. The Grizz, Bare Bear or the Texas Treehouse are far more descriptive and romantic names for a rental property than the Smith House. They'll stand out in people's minds and actually contribute to their level of enjoyment during their stay. And don't forget about the impact in the internet search engines. A unique, descriptive name featuring some of your area's most popular search terms (cabin, condo, bungalow, cottage, etc.) will be much easier to find in an online experience.

Two...decide on how aggressively you wish to pursue rentals. For some, it's a business and every single booked night counts. Others may wish to rent it just enough to cover their monthly expenses, with occasional owner stays. Still another segment of vacation rental owners may not be concerned about the number of rental nights at all preferring to rent only occasionally. Be aware of which group you fall into, as each one requires a different marketing approach.

Three...price it right. Right pretty much depends on which group you fall into under tip two. If you're in the vacation home business, you'll want to be particularly aggressive in pricing to keep the calendar filled. If you're just covering expenses, the area norm for a similar property or a few dollars more will probably work best. And if you're fortunate enough to be unencumbered by the frequency of rentals, you may seek a premium price.

Four...how many is too many? Selecting the appropriate occupancy for your rental unit is important. There are three bedroom rentals that accommodate six people and there are three bedroom properties that accommodate fifteen. If you wish to stimulate rentals you may wish to add beds and go with a higher number of occupants. Others may chose to establish a lower maximum number of guests to appeal to a different renter profile. Remember, all things being equal ten people will be much harder in wear and tear on things than a group of five.

Five...no place like home! Make your vacation rental warm and inviting. Don't skimp on the decor with plenty of art, plants and knick knacks to give that unmistakable air of...home. And don't forget a guest book for all to sign. Some owners even leave a small profile of themselves encouraging the guests to email or call them with feedback on their stay.

Six...advertise wisely. Some vacation rentals owners have success with ads in small, local print publications. Others may experience results with paid ads on popular local websites. But many of the best ways to promote your venture may be available to you absolutely free! There are literally hundreds of internet directories and sites that will post a listing about your vacation rental at no charge. Most likely your state department of tourism maintains an extensive website that is ready and willing to help you promote your second home. Usually, as a member of the local chamber of commerce you're entitled to appear on their website. Additionally, there are many specialty websites that will list you at no charge. For instance, if western is the theme of your rental you may choose to list it on www.cowboy.com . If you have a golf course condo, you might seek out golf oriented sites. Just invest in some web surfing time and you'll find more than enough opportunities to promote your rental unit.

Seven...talk it up! Let everyone know what you have available. Tell folks at work or church and perhaps offer them a special discount. You may wish to donate it to a local church or civic group to use as a retreat. If these folks have an enjoyable stay they're bound to tell others. This is the best form of advertising that you can generate...word of mouth!

Eight...a picture is worth a thousand words. Whatever way you choose to advertise your vacation rental, pictures will most likely be involved. Do not underestimate the need for high quality photographs to make people want to visit your home. Instead of the run of the mill, blurry, underexposed shots invest in good quality photographs. For $150.00 - $200.00 (probably the cost of just one night's stay) you can hire a competent local photographer to produce a series shots that will create real impact with potential guests.

Nine...niche markets. You may wish to specialize in a pet friendly property or a unit with handicap access. If your property is right on a river or lake, you may wish to decorate in the atmosphere of a fishing shanty. If you're on a golf course you may include golf memorabilia as part of your decor. Identify people with special needs or requirements that may be otherwise ignored in your area and make them your target.

Ten...seek professional help. If you don't have the time, temperament or inclination to do everything yourself, secure the services of a property management company to maximize the ROI that you expect. They are involved in all of the above on a daily basis and can help you achieve the type of results you seek from your vacation rental.

Sunday, July 16, 2006

By The Way, Billy

Noted outlaw Billy The Kid was a famous figure from the rugged American Old West. His involvement in the Lincoln County, New Mexico Wars as one of John Tunstall's "Regulators" is part of a fascinating legend that took place throughout southern New Mexico. Folks come from all over the world to explore the area for themselves. Original buildings from the era still stand complemented by museums packed with interesting lore and artifacts about Billy and the period in which he lived.
The best way to enjoy the Billy The Kid experience is by following the route of the Billy The Kid Scenic Byway. I bet the last thing that Billy ever would have imagined is that a motor route through southern New Mexico bearing his name and likeness. Thoroughfares all over the world carry the name of statesmen, entertainers, sports figures, astronauts and other heros. In this case the Billy The Kid Scenic Byway is named...well, for an outlaw.
You'll start off in Ruidoso Downs, New Mexico at the Billy The Kid Scenic Byway Visitor's Center. The facility will give you the background on the history of the area. Naturally, you'll have the opportunity to pick up an ample supply of souvenirs for the dashboard and the refrigerator door. While in Ruidoso Downs you'll want to see the Hubbard Museum of the American West, the Ruidoso Downs Racetrack and the Billy The Kid Casino.
The resort community of Ruidoso is next. Enjoy the many shops and galleries and be sure to stop by the historic Dowlin's Mill, one of the favorite haunts of Billy The Kid.
You'll proceed north through Alto, on the way to Capitan. On the way, save some time to see historic Ft. Stanton. This fort helped tame the wild west. Due to several battles at the fort itself, Ft. Stanton served as both a Union and Confederate stronghold. Each year in August the "Ft. Stanton Live" celebration recreates life as it was in the era when the fort was a major factor in the defense of New Mexico.
Capitan is next and is perhaps best known as the home of the only American figure with his own zip code...Smokey Bear. See the final resting spot of old Smokey at the Smokey Bear Park and well as interesting exhibits on fire prevention and the local flora. By the way, to remain politically correct it's just Smokey Bear. Just happen to let go with a "Smokey The Bear" and you'll quickly be corrected. It's kind of like saying "Santa The Claus" or "Easter The Bunny".
From Capitan we move over to the hot bed of the Lincoln County Wars, Lincoln, New Mexico. Here many buildings from the Billy The Kid era still stand. Several now serve as museums for a fascinating look at life in the American Old West. You might want to stop for a cold beverage at the Wortley Hotel or stay the night at the Ellis Store Bed and Breakfast.
Next on the scenic byway is Hondo, San Patricio and Glencoe. The Coe Ranch still stands and was where Billy The Kid worked as a ranch hand during his formative years.
The byway has made a large loop through the area and as we continue, we find ourselves back at the visitor's center in Ruidoso Downs. You'll find the Billy The Kid Scenic Byway trip well worth while and enjoyable for families and children of all ages. Don't pass up the chance to see how history has played an important part in New Mexico and where the legend of Billy The Kid was born. You can even watch this video on Billy...

Saturday, April 22, 2006

Jim - Memorial Day 2006



I first published this blog installment last year. It seemed like it might be a good idea to reissue the piece. Let's remember... just because our Commander and Chief has been a big disappointment doesn't mean we should not support our troops. They are there for US. Let 'em know how you feel!

Jim Jablonski was average in most ways. He was average height and weight, an average student with an attempt at a moustache that just wouldn't quite fill out. I met Jim in high school. Jim and I resided in the brass section of the school band. As a baritone player he sat immediately in front of me and my tuba. We traded remarks , cracked jokes and when the band's yearly concert rolled around, it was Jim that had a bottle of blackberry brandy stowed away in his locker to help celebrate the event. Jim lost his life on a helicopter in Vietnam. Troubling? Of course! What's even more troubling is that everyone knows at least one Jim.

When Memorial Day comes around I think of Jim and it still seems kind of senseless. I guess engraving names in marble helps us remember, but it does little to help us understand. There isn't a day that we spend that we do not enjoy the benefits of a life that would not be the same if our relatives, friends and neighbors had not seen fit to give their lives. We remember them, and are grateful.

So I'd like to take the opportunity to say thank you, not only to those that gave their lives and their families...but to all who have and are serving their country. I find it impossible to not be extremely thankful for their sacrifice. So remember them when you're standing in the backyard grilling. Maybe the tearing in the corner of your eyes won't be from the BBQ smoke. And of course, thank you Jim.

Sunday, March 26, 2006

We Are Family





Ruidoso, New Mexico is a lot of things to many people. A ski resort, a thriving horse racing destination and, more than anything, a great place to spend time with your family. And where can you find a more fun mix of activities and events for the kids than in Southern New Mexico!

Ruidoso has a wonderful assortment of activities for children of all ages. Enjoy horse back riding with four stables in town and one on the nearby
Mescalero Apache Reservation. If it's fishing you're after the hot spots are at the Grindstone Dam, Mescalero Reservation and the mighty Rio Ruidoso River, stocked with plenty of good sized trout. Just be sure and have a local fishing license, easily obtainable at the local WalMart and Western Auto. If you don't catch anything there, head on past the racetrack to Seeping Springs Trout Pond. They furnish the gear, the fishin' hole and you only pay 50 cents an inch for what you catch no license required. Here's the very best part...they clean them for you! My daugther took the family and came back with 4 lovely 12 inch+ trout all ready for the grill.

Naturally, being in the mountains of New Mexico there's plenty of hiking and nature. The
Lincoln National Forest is a start with plenty of other diverse scenery nearby. If you're after more urban pursuits, Fun Trackers Amusements in Ruidoso has go karts, bumber boats and goofy golf. That's just for starters. Add in the history of the region and you've got a plateful.

Ruidoso has it's own historical spots. There's Dowlin's Mill where Billy the Kid stayed. Don't forget a stop at the Hubbard Museum of the American West for an enchanting look at the past for all ages.

Capitan, a scant twenty minutes from Ruidoso is home to the only American figure with their own zip code...Smokey Bear. The Smokey Bear Historical Park is packed with tips on preventing wild fires with plenty of interactive display for the children. There's a small theater with regular showings, an informative garden area with many types of indigenous flora and of course the final resting spot of old Smokey himself. Always a tear there it seems.

In
Lincoln, only 30 minutes away you've got the hub of the Lincoln County Wars. Characters like John Tunstall, Sheriff Bob Ollenger and of course William Bonney who became better known as Billy the Kid. It's the bloodiest street in America...in any era...with a nice selection of museums, shops and original buildings. The classic Wortley Hotel which still operates seasonally and the Ellis Store, now a splendid bed and breakfast are just examples.

An hour south of Ruidoso is Alamagordo. Pay a visit to their zoo. Perhaps the really big screen calls from the IMAX theater. Mystified by the stars? The Space Museum is bound to enthrall. Don't forget the allure of the magical
White Sands National Monument...all great reasons to make the 60 minute drive.

Only 75 minutes out is the infamous Roswell, home to UFO buffs from aroung the world. Is it a weather balloon or something else? The
UFO Museum has their opinion on the matter. Check them out!

If it seems like a lot of things to keep the kids loving the area, well that's because there are! Frequently concerned parents who come to enjoy the race track or casinos ask, "Is there anything for the kids to do?". You bet!

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Selecting a Property Management Company

If you've spent any time in a resort community, you've probably encountered a good number of vacation rentals. These can vary, from cabins to condos and perhaps even a seaside bungalow. These are properties frequently owned by absent investors and rented out to guests on a nightly, weekly or monthly basis. In a busy resort community these homes can not only be a gracious lodging experience, but often more economical than hotels especially at "high season" rates.
If you're among the many considering investing in a rental property you must make a choice. Prepare to spend the time to maintain the unit and arrange for reliable housekeeping services, advertise your little getaway on the internet and in the local media, and provide facilities for checking guests in and out. The alternative is the preference of a majority of out of town owners...hire a reputable property management company to help maximize your ROI.
Here are a few guidelines to help in selecting the management company that best meets your needs.
> Naturally, word of mouth can help you in your research. Talk to locals and other rental property owners. Most will be happy to share their experiences with you.
> Note the visibility of the management company in the market. Are they easily located in the local phone book? How many units do they manage? Do they have actual office facilities or are your guests reporting for check-in to someone's garage? Do they advertise in the local travel guides and other area publications?
> Technology plays an important part in property management success. Does your candidate have a solid internet presence? Can you see ample photos online to help selecting an appropriate retreat? Can you easily check availability and book online? Most important, how easily can your candidate be found in the online community? Target a search engine and a search term that you feel people might actually use to shop for a property. In Ruidoso, New Mexico a mountain resort community the most popular vacation rental is the mountain cabin.
Select, for example MSN...and the simple search phrase "ruidoso cabin". If your property management candidate shows up in the first page, you've located a firm that has the marketing savvy to help your investment succeed. If the company you're investigating is number one on the first search page you've found an aggressive, professional marketer with the tools you need to maximize the return from your investment. If they do not appear in the first three pages of search results...move on. They may have a website, but it is not positioned to help you make reservations.
> What is the rental experience like for the guest? Is the initial contact with a friendly, knowlegeable reservationist? Here's where your own powers of observation come into play. Call your candidate and actually book a stay in one of their managed properties. How were you treated? Was the property well maintained and clean? Would you rent from them again? This simple technique can be a real eye opener.
These basic questions will help you get started in selecting the property management that can help you realize your investment plans.

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Country Music - Introducing CT Harrison

CT Harrison just called to let me know that he was making another television appearance, this time on cable's PAX network. Not surprising. It has been said that if you throw enough "stuff" at the wall, sooner or later something is bound to stick. And CT has displayed remarkable resilience with his throwing arm. After knocking on doors from Nashville to Los Angeles I suppose that he has every right to become discouraged at the results of his efforts. But he doesn't. He just keeps on.
What makes a person that focused on his goal...his love of music? "My sister left home when I was just eight years old." CT recalls. "She left behind her Gibson Les Paul copy guitar. That was enough for me!" he remembers. "I used to sit in the living room for hours playing that thing to an 8-Track of Johnny Cash's Man In Black." Note: If you don't quite remember 8-Tracks ask Mom and Dad. "I would pretend I was Johnny Cash and the crowd was cheering for ME. Later, I also fell in love with the drums. After playing air drums every waking hour of every day my folks finally bought me a drum set. I guess this whole course was set right there."

CT was born in Las Vegas, Nevada where he was adopted at 11 months old after stays in several foster homes. He grew up on a farm near Roswell, New Mexico where he attended East Grand Plains Elementary School, T. Mesa Middle School and finally Goddard High School. "I wasn't a great student, but I did OK... and my love of music continued to develop." CT offered. While other Country Music hopefuls were waiting tables in Nashville, CT had his share of 'day jobs'. "My first after school job was in a butcher shop and I absolutely hated it! Next, I held a brief job at the local Radio Shack". CT seemed to embrace variety and jobs as a contractor, surveyor, psychiatric technician, nurse's aid, reservationist and several stints as a Disc Jockey followed.
But CT wasn't just working... he was listening as well. He had his ear to his Country favorites Toby Keith, Tim McGraw, Gary Allen, Pat Green and his idol, Chris LeDoux. CT mused, "When I listen to what I've recorded, I can hear bits and pieces of all of them." And CT's discography continues to grow. "Waiting For The Other Heart To Fall was a 5 song EP that I really enjoyed recording. The season seemed to take over next and we released CT's Country Christmas. My current project American Outlaw is perhaps our biggest undertaking to date."
CT does reserve some time for relaxation. "I fish, camp and when darkness falls it's straight to the honky tonk dance floor." And all wrapped in a steady diet of Country music. His fantasy? "I'd travel to Scotland and visit old castles, Loch Ness and do some ghost hunting, in season of course." A grin swept across his face. "I really love ghost hunting."
CT's chosen genre of Country music has always been about lovin', leavin', drinkin' and fightin'. I asked CT which he feels has most impacted his career. "Bar brawls." he answered without the slightest hesitation. "One night in Farmington, New Mexico 5 pipe liners got me down in the parking lot. It took the better part of a month to recover but heck, that was FUN!"
You can sample CT's music or order it online at www.ctharrison.com.

Wednesday, January 18, 2006

The Perfect Ski Vacation





A lot of planning has gone into preparations for the perfect ski trip. You've targeted an adventure at Ski Apache in Southern New Mexico. Good choice! Ski Apache is one of those well kept ski secrets. 55 breathtaking trails and the largest lift capacity in New Mexico make for maximum skiing and a minimum of waiting.

Nearby Ruidoso, New Mexico offers all the convenience of a modern resort community. Ample lodging and dining choices are the "trimming" for your ski holiday. You've considered all the many places to stay and have decided that a mountain adventure calls for that perfect getaway...a secluded mountain cabin. A good choice in Ruidoso would be "Away From It All"...a brand new cabin tucked away just a few miles from downtown...but light years away from other people. Now that you have the accommodations nailed down, it's time to attend to the skiing.

Many Ruidoso hotels, cabins and property management companies offer a "ski package" with your lodging. They've bundled together discounted lift tickets and equipment rentals to make the logistics of the trip a breeze! The ski vouchers you'll exchange for lift tickets save you from standing in long lift ticket lines. Make sure that your equipment rental outlet offers reservations on your ski equipment, like the Wild West Ski Shop. That way, your previous phone order allows you to go to the head of long equipment lines with little or no waiting. Don't be afraid to strike up a conversation with the locals. They'll let you in on tips like these that will save you time and get you skiing.

Only one more detail to investigate. Time to check the weather. It's no secret that there is no such thing as too much snow for local businesses that rely on highly seasonal income from winter sports. This year, precipitation has been light all over New Mexico. For reasons unknown, rumors on the extent of this light snowfall exagerate the shortage of new snow. Local merchants now join together to present an accurrate picture of the situation. Few are more affected than the areas lodgers. Like river boat gamblers, their hand is betting on snow to attract the business that they need to survive. The snow always comes. This year it's just a little...late.

Let's set the record straight. Snowfall has been light, but Ski Apache is open and people are having the time of their lives...skiing! Ruidoso prepares for the barrage of skiers searching for and finding the perfect ski vacation.

Saturday, November 19, 2005

Goodbye Old Friend


Beloved Ruidoso entertainer Bela Kronk was remembered today in a fitting "standing room only" memorial service. Kronk, the incredibly popular percussionist for the Southern New Mexico group Bad Chili passed away suddenly Thursday. His unexpected death was attributed to blood poisoning caused by contact with the forged Rolex watch that he wore.

As was expected, the remaining members of Bad Chili were grief stricken. "Ya just can't understand something like this." commented Rico. "He's gone quicker than if somebody popped him!"

Sal joined the tribute. "The essence of greatness has passed. Our music will never be the same" he added. The bereft Monk could only nod in agreement.

Perhaps the most upset from the recent tragedy was bassist Crawdad. "Can you believe that he's gone? He owed me twenty dollars!" lamented Crawdad. Bela's body will be returned to his native Romania.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

Top Ten Secrets

The resort village of Ruidoso, New Mexico has an unusually large number of all types of restaurants, galleries and shops. You can easily find a wide selection of foods, arts and gifts. There are also some great lesser known businesses and services available that the casual tourist may miss. Here are my top "Ten Best Kept Secrets About Ruidoso, New Mexico" to enhance your visit. We'll use inverse order to build the suspense!

10 Disco Taco Yes, we have the upscale Mexican Restaurants. If you want a margarita and to mingle with fellow travelers, forget Disco Taco. If you want good, down to earth Mexican food without a tourist atmosphere, check it out. On highway 70 in Ruidoso Downs.

9 Bad Chili The phenomenon of the Ruidoso band Bad Chili keeps steaming along! Together only six months, the group is playing to packed houses all over town! Is it their music? Is it their style? Judge for yourself. Catch a serving of Bad Chili when you're in Ruidoso.

8 Go Ruidoso The official travel and tourism website or Ruidoso, New Mexico. Chock full of information on local events, business and the community Go Ruidoso can be a life saver when planning a vacation in Ruidoso. Check them out at www.goruidoso.com .

7 Ruidoso Convention Center Nestled in the sleepy little Village of Ruidoso sits the Ruidoso Convention Center. A first rate meeting facility, the convention center is adjacent to the world class Links at Sierra Blanca Golf Course and the Hawthorn Suites. Home to events of all sizes and types the convention center is the idea place to combine business with pleasure!

6 Lincoln County Grill The grill really isn't a secret, but many still haven't tried their tasty and generous menu items. Breakfast is a treat and whatever happens remember this one simple fact about the grill...Chicken Fried Steaks!

5 Vacation Rentals Accommodations of all types can fill up fast during peak periods in Ruidoso. Because rooms are in great demand, prices rise significantly for holidays and special events. One hedge against the high lodging prices are Ruidoso's many vacation cabins, condos and home rentals. Private owners only in town for several weeks a year lease their properties out on a nightly basis. Frequently these offer amenities hotels don't...private hot tubs, pool tables, putting greens, ski equipment racks and even boot warmers. All at a cost less that a room at an upscale area hotel!

4 Chester Fried Chicken I don't do fried chicken very often but when I do, Chester's blows the colonel out of the water! Tender and flavorful, Chester's is available for take out from the Ruidoso Lawrence Brothers IGA Grocery.

3 Weasel Productions Weasel Productions is a Ruidoso hallmark in video production and photography. They feature the photographic skills of noted New Mexico photographer John T. Soden. John has been hailed by some as the "Ansel Adams of the mountain"! See his work in Ruidoso at the Hubbard Museum of the West and Josie's Gallery and Framing. Sample the talent at www.weaselvideoproductions.com .

2 The Club House A small, comfortable lounge tucked away behind a gas station. Relax with a libation, visit with friends or watch their big screen TV. This favorite "watering hole" is located at the intersection of Mechem (Hwy 48) and White Mountains Drives.

Finally, the very best kept secret about Ruidoso...

1 Visiting Ruidoso, New Mexico ... this very blog!

Plan on exploring some of these rather unique Ruidoso attractions. You'll have a great time discovering new favorites during your visit.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

Rebounding In Style!

It was only last week that the Ruidoso group Bad Chili was reeling from a chain of circumstances that clearly left the band's future in doubt. This week, it's back to business as usual with all problems well behind them.

The band's guitarist, Rico, was completely exonerated from racketeering allegations when Judge Roy Bean (no relation) dismissed all charges. "I see no need to continue with this poorly scripted charade." the Judge stated before leaving the country on urgent personal business. "I knew I'd be vindicated all along." maintained the guitarist.

Bela, the band's premiere percussionist had been experiencing problems related to Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. "I thought it was my music causing this problem." Bela confided. "As it turned out, all I needed to do was stop wearing my Rolex when I play! I'm fine...never been better!".

The band's troubles continued to disappear as bassist Crawdad has been released from hospitalization for exhaustion. "They totally replaced all of my blood." Crawdad explained. "Now I've got plenty of reds and whites and it's going to stay that way! I've vowed to get at least two hours of sleep every night to help keep things in balance."

Band member Sal is relieved about the shift in the group's momentum. "I just can't tell you how concerned I was!" mused Sal. "It's great to see the guys back together again! I'm ready to put it all behind us!"

As if the group's new outlook weren't enough, President George W. Bush decided to help them celebrate! "The President has been a big
Bad Chili fan for a while now." said a White House spokesman. "He's got both CDs and has been looking forward to meeting them." he added. "It was really the President!" exclaimed guitarist Monk. "I almost couldn't believe my eyes!"

Sunday, October 09, 2005

Big Trouble in River City


As you'll notice the recent problems facing the Ruidoso, New Mexico group Bad Chili have garnered their share of national attention. Is this the end of the band who's meteroric rise to fame in Southern New Mexico has taken the center stage in the national media?

An anonymous source close to the group reports that despite the circumstances that have plagued the band over the past week it's business as usual. "They may be down, but don't count them out!" the source commented.

The week's woes began as guitarist Rico was arrested and jailed pending arrainment on the "three strikes" provision of US racketeering laws. The action was particularly ironic with Rico arrested while attending...a baseball game! "I'm confident that I will be vindicated shortly." Rico maintained. He declined further comments and was accompanied by representatives from Dewey, Fleeceham and Howe retained to represent him.

If things couldn't have gotten any worse, percussionist Bela is reported to be under care for Carpel Tunnel Syndrome. "I've been using my wrists all my life! Why does this happen now?" the drummer lamented.

The downward spiral continued as bass player Crawdad is reportedly suffering from exhaustion. "I've never felt so really spent in all my life!" Crawdad remarked. "It's a fine creel of mudbugs to be in considering our recent success." He was hospitalized after collapsing during his statement to the press.

Guitarist Monk is said to be despondent over recent events. "He's so depressed he's even considering reversing his retina transplant!" our source reported. "He's not taking it well."

The only one not affected by the recent developments is lead vocalist Sal. He was frank in his conversations with our source. "I told those guys to slow down! I mean...really slow down! I was hoping they'd listen. I was hoping they'd listen."

Bad Chili fans everywhere are devastated, with candle light vigils planned to demonstrate the fans' support. "We're confident they'll maintain their recent level of success." stated the president of the Bad Chili Fan Club. "We've got to let them know we're there."

Will Bad Chili be able to keep their incredible momentum alive? Updates due next week will hopefully allow the band to continue their concert tour and success. "We're all hoping for the best here." offered Sal.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

Bad To The Bone






















The stat
e of New Mexico has an official question..."Red or green?". It refers to your choice of chili, red or green. It augments many menu selections..."Did you want the red or green chili on that sir?". Now New Mexico adds a third choice...red chili, green chili or Bad Chili !

Meet the Ruidoso, New Mexico band
Bad Chili. Bad Chili is a rather recent addition to the Ruidoso music scene, drawing upon over 100 years of combined music experience. Their repertoire includes material from Van Morrison, Led Zepplin, Kansas and many more classics. While they haven't yet inked a regular club gig you can find them appearing at the area's finest events. Their individual characters and styles contribute to the overall feel of a lighthearted but intent focus on their first, and in some cases, only love...music. Let's meet the group:

Bela - Brooding and contemplative Bela adds the beat to Bad Chili. Kind of like the cumin in a chili recipe Bela is that certain "something" that makes the mix. Too little and it's just not right! Too much and, well...

Rico - What can you say about Rico? Stoic, sensitive and immersed in the music, Rico mastered the guitar on his last stint in maximum security. He also joins in on vocals. If asked, you like his performance very, very much! Right?

Sal - A wonderful vocal range plus talents on the guitar and harp make Sal a good front for this bowl of Chili. A native of Lapland, Sal settled in Ruidoso because it reminded him of the Lap-plains of his Lap-homeland. Sal also enjoys Lap-dances.

Monk - What can you say about Monk, the master of the strings? Moving fluidly between guitars, mandolin or banjo Monk adds a real depth to the Chili experience. Blind since birth, a recent retinal transplant has allowed him to realize a life long dream...driving legally.

Crawdad - The mirth of the mixture, Crawdad is always burning a bass or trashing his amplifier. Embracing the "show" in each performance, Crawdad's antics are a real crowd pleaser. By the way, it's really not polite to stare at the lobotomy scars.

Now you know Bad Chili as well as anyone. If you have the nerve to attend an event featuring the quintet, you'll drink as much as the rest of us! For booking information or to just jawbone a little, call Crawdad at 505.257.4031.

Sunday, September 04, 2005

Humanitarian Relief

There is no doubt that the effects of hurricane Katrina (I'm sure glad they're female again) will, in some way, impact everyone in the country. The storm has already destroyed billions of dollars of personal property and left thousands devastated and homeless. If you have not yet made a donation a good place to start is with the American Red Cross.
There is a movement across the United States to help house those affected by this tragedy. Many all over the country are generously willing to donate homes, apartments and mobile homes to those in immediate need. It has been suggested that some care in the selection of recipients may be in order to keep folks from finding out that they are actually housing looters and rapists instead of distressed flood victims. At first glance, that may seem reasonable enough. But if you think about it, here's a chance to rise way above just one disaster.
The crime rate in some urban areas is staggering. Imagine redistributing some of the burden to more rural areas. The place to start is New Orleans. Imagine a small town official calling the mayor of New Orleans with an offer to take a half dozen looters off his hands. "We've got a good police force and we can handle 'em even if they have baseball bats." he might say. A local civic organization could volunteer to take an arsonist or two. The offers to help evenly distribute the crime rate would pour in, not only for New Orleans but other crime ridden communities.
The mayor of Crystal Forks, North Dakota would dial up the mayor of say...New York City. "We'll take a dozen of anything ya' got except murderers. We don't need none o' them murderers!" The potential here is unlimited.
This could evolve into a national crime barter system. One rapist is worth six jay walkers or two cat burglars for one armed robber. You get the idea. Rural America reaches out to the beleaguered cities to help share the national disaster of rising crime. Now that would be humanitarian aid.

Sunday, August 14, 2005

Calvary...ATTENTION!

This past weekend celebrated the 150th anniversary of historic Ft. Stanton, New Mexico. Ft. Stanton, Inc. that operates the fort and spearheads the Ft. Stanton restoration effort sponsored an intriguing look at life during the long history of the facility. During the Civil War, Ft. Stanton was temporarily occupied by Confederate Troops and the re-occupied by the Union in 1862. The anniversary celebration took place August 13th and 14th, 2005. Historians, re-enacters, musicians and period craftsmen joined together to create the time machine that transported those in attendance to eras gone by. Tents of soldiers and settlers lined the main street for the two day event, and presented an amazingly real atmosphere. There were moments when, just for a second, this was the past! There were military and atillery drills with vendors demonstrating the crafts of the period. Blacksmiths, weavers, candlemakers and even a genuine tin type photographer added the trimmings which helped fuel the suspension of disbelief. Fife and drummers marched, mounted units performed. For a moment, this was Ft. Stanton in it's finest hour.
Throughout the festivities it was curious to note that I heard no one in all of the demonstrations and awards that was aware of the word "cavalry". Everyone was talking about "Calvary demonstrations", "Calvary hats", "Calvary units". Was there to be a re-enactment of Christ's Crucifixion? Had this become a religious event? Not even Tony Hoffman, the energetic bard of Ft. Stanton, Inc. had the slightest idea that the cavalry was a mounted military unit and Calvary was the mountain on which Christ was crucified. Not exactly the mettle of true historians.
The event drew thousands that were treated to a real "step back". Congratulations to the many staff, volunteers and friends of Ft. Stanton on making the event a great success!

Monday, July 04, 2005

Air Head

Ruidoso, New Mexico averages only 2 days per year over 90 degrees. Because Ruidoso's climate is so moderate, many of the cabins, condos and homes for rent in the area do not have air conditioning.

When you visit Ruidoso during the summer months, do not assume that all accommodations automatically have cooling systems. If cooler temperatures are important to you, ask up front if the property you're considering has air. And note the differences between the types of "air conditioning".

Good old central, refridgerated air conditioning remains the favorite. It provides consistent, whole house comfort. A window air conditioning unit also provides refridgerated air, but just to a section of your rental. It may provide just enough cool in just the right area to help insure your comfort. Evaporative cooling (aka swamp coolers) are an effective way to cool areas in a extremely dry environment. Evaporating water can provide suprising cooling results in a desert climate.

With a temperate climate, air conditioning should not be a major consideration for most when visiting Ruidoso. The warm dry days and the rather crisp evenings make for some of the most ideal weather known to man. Add the consistent mountain breezes and you have an ideal climate for your summertime...or anytime...visit.

Sunday, June 05, 2005


Ruidoso Central Reservations Website Posted by Hello

With reservations...

Ruidoso has all the magic that the New Mexico slogan promises, truly...the Land of Enchantment! Because Ruidoso is a resort community, accommodations may be tricky at peak periods. No problem, if you keep a few simple facts in mind.

1) Plan EARLY. A lot of people are amazed that some lodging can be full a year or more in advance of arrival. If you're headed for Ruidoso during summer or winter weekends, advance reservations can be a lifesaver!
2) Have the exact information regarding your exact needs and dates. Don't rely on "We'll be coming in the weekend of the 4th". Be specific... "We'll be arriving on the 3rd and departing on the 7th" will leave no margin for error. Have the exact number of people handy. Strange as it may seem, children are actually people and do count. If you'll be using a credit card to make the reservations, have it nearby.
3) Ruidoso presents a LOT of lodging choices. In addition to a hotel you may choose to stay in a cabin, lodge, condo or vacation home. If you're completely lost on making a decision try the service offered by Ruidoso Central Reservations. They make reservations for many types of lodging throughout Ruidoso and can help match your exact expectations with the perfect accommodations. They can also provide a depth of information on area activities and attractions.
4) Make sure that you understand the policies and procedures for the accommodations you've secured. Find out about check-in and check-out times as well as the cancellation policy. Cancellation can vary widely and ranges from just 24 hours prior to arrival up to 14 days.
5) Keep records. File documents in a folder for the trip. Have directions, confirmation data and the name and local phone number for where you will be staying. I've seen many souls wandering Ruidoso trying to figure out where they are supposed to stay because they've lost their lodging information. Enjoy your stay! Don't allow these inconveninces to cost even one minute of your precious Ruidoso vacation.

These simple tips can save you a lot of time and energy when visiting Ruidoso. Along with a little common sense, you'll insure a carefree stay in enchanting Ruidoso.

Sunday, May 29, 2005


CT Harrison Posted by Hello

Waiting

I first met CT Harrision in Ruidoso, New Mexico. He had answered a help wanted ad in the local newspaper. He was confident, carried himself well and seemed like he'd be a good employee. He learned quickly and soon was able to do the job well. Occasionally though, he did seem distracted and not quite focused on his job. Then again, at that time in his life CT had a lot to occupy his attention. CT and his wife were near the end of their relationship...something that can really sap your time and energy. CT just kind of left suddenly...here one day, gone another. I guess I really didn't understand why.

Part of the reason may have been that CT was also occupied with his real love, music. Fleeing Ruidoso, CT headed for Florida and then Nashville. Once in Nashville the pieces started to come together. The product of this transition is a Country CD entitled "Waiting For The Other Heart to Fall". On it, CT demonstrates his considerable vocal and percussion talents with the same confidence that I had seen before. The songs are first rate, with one even broaching the subject of child abuse.

It's good to see the talent ooze out of CT and I suspect there's even more inside. Give the material a listen on his new website.

Friday, May 27, 2005


Cedar Creek 2001 - John T. Soden Posted by Hello

Ruidoso in the Summer

No matter where you stay or what type of lodging you choose, you'll have many opportunity to enjoy the wooded, mountain areas of Ruidoso. Majestic vistas require a little thought and a little effort to maintain. Please try to keep the following in mind when traveling in Lincoln County.

Ruidoso is in the middle of the Lincoln National Forest, which is managed by the U.S. Forest Service operating out of the Smokey Bear Ranger Station. Avoid being corrected by the locals...it's Smokey Bear and NOT Smokey "The" Bear. You'll avoid the standard reprimand of, "You don't say Easter The Bunny or Santa The Claus, do you?" Consider yourself warned.

Ruidoso is also in the desert, making forest or wild fires of constant concern. When you come to Ruidoso, be prepared to follow the local fire regulations in effect during your visit. This always means no fireworks, and at times may include no campfires, no smoking outoors and restrictions on grilling with charcoal. Naturally, care and common sense are always in order when handling fire outside. Make sure things are completely out and ashes are drowned or quite cold before disposing of them.

Equally important is avoiding impact with local wildlife. The deer are protected and are quite brazen. Be prepared to have traffic suddenly come to a halt to let a group cross the road...especially in the hours around dusk. Please be careful and dispose of trash. Failure to place garbage, especially containing food scraps, into a proper receptacle can cause situations with the bears. And whatever you do, DON'T feed the bears.

Just keep these simple guidelines in mind when visiting Ruidoso. It will make your stay more enjoyable and insure that Ruidoso will be the same for your next visit.