Monday, 5 April 2010

Rex Allen Museum

Friday we took a walk around the historic district of Willcox, our first stop was the Rex Allen Museum, Willcox Cowboy Hall of Fame.

Rex Allen was a real life cowboy born and raised in Willcox, Arizona. He had a radio show in Chicago before Hollywood beckoned and he became a movie star and singing cowboy.

Each October the town holds an event called Rex Allen days with a parade, rodeos upwards of 15,000 people attend. Even though neither of us really remember Rex Allen we enjoyed looking around the museum.

In the railroad park across from the museum is a memorial to Rex Allen, it’s also where his horse KoKo is buried.

Rex Allen Memorial
We also took a look inside Willcox Commercial the oldest operating general store in Arizona.

From there we took a drive over to the Amerind Foundation in Dragoon. The Amerind Foundation is an interesting place, along with a museum filled with artefacts, some discovered in nearby Texas Canyon there is an art gallery containing interesting paintings, sculptures and furniture. My favourite painting was so lifelike it seemed like a photograph. Photography is not allowed, so no photographs I’m afraid.

We drove home through Dragoon and past Willcox Playa a vast sandy expanse that shimmers in the heat. Thousands of years ago Willcox Playa was a vast lake, Lake Cochise, covering about 140 square miles. The military once used it for bombing practise and there are unexploded munitions out there, so it is a no go area. There are no roads through it. Each winter tens of thousands of sand hill cranes arrive on their annual migration and bird watchers descend on Willcox for the annual Wings over Willcox event. No photographs as we were driving I didn’t think to take any. Interesting place somewhere we’ll have to investigate, so the wildlife viewing area is now on our ever growing ‘To visit list’..

Have fun, we are!

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