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Holbrook, Navajo County, AZ

Louise Speaks:  As part of our journey, you may have noticed that we are trying to visit all the county seats of Arizona. In Arizona there are 15 counties and as we travel through the state we make it a point to visit the county seats.  We are leaving Arizona today heading East, as far east as Wisconsin.  Our last stop as we leave the state of Arizona is the county seat of Navajo County and that is Holbrook.  Again this is a city that we have visited before and blogged about, but not the county seat.

100_4148Holbrook was founded in 1881 or 1882, when the railroad was built, and named to honor the first chief engineer of the Atlantic and Pacific Railroad.  According to the 2010 census, the population of the city was 5053 residence.  Navajo County borders Apache county and shares the Petrified Forest.  In fact Holbrook is known as the gateway to the Petrified Forest…a must see when visiting the state of Arizona.  President Roosevelt named the Petrified Forest, including part of the Painted Desert,  a National Monument in 1906.  Holbrook was incorporated in 1917.  Most of the Beale Wagon Road became Route 66 in 1926 and passed through both the Petrified Forest and Holbrook.  Tourism started taking over the economy.

100_6362The county courthouse also houses a “haunted” jail…the original, historic jail, that once held Geronimo as prisoner.  The courthouse is such an unassuming building that we thought it was closed at first. Turns out there is a whole museum inside detailing the history of the area and the jail from 1898.  The museum itself is great and very informative, detailing everything from the Pony Express to the school system. AND – it’s haunted, or so we were told.   They leave the jail as it was – all they do is sweep the floor. There’s some beautiful artwork done by the prisoners. The cells are so creepy and cold.  You are able to go upstairs, but we didn’t take the time to do so,  I was told that upstairs was even more haunted because that is where a prisoner committed suicide and people can still feel his presence.

100_2494You may not think there is much to see and do in or around Holbrook but you are mistaken.  Like I mentioned earlier from here you can visit the Petrified Forest National Park and also the Painted Desert…something you just have to see.  While here a must stop is the Wigwam Hotel on the original Route 66.  There are plenty of things around town and in the desert along Route 66 worth stopping to see and take a few pictures.  Remember the Wigwam Hotel is where Oprah and Gayle stayed on their Route 66 trip, so you know it must be something to see.  The most famous thing about Holbrook, is that it received the #6 ranking of the town with the “wackiest street name”…so go find “Bucket of Blood Street”…gee wouldn’t you just want that for your address…lol.

Once I-40 was opened, Holbrook fell off the map.  Route 66 went right through Holbrook in the 60s so Holbrook was a main artery, but now it is just another sleepy Arizona town.  You have to get off the I-40 to visit Holbrook, and with the courthouse, haunted jail and the wigwam hotel it really is worth the detour.

Thelma Speaks:

 


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Holbrook, Arizona to Albuquerque, New Mexico

100_6376Louise Speaks:  Today marks the first day of our 2015 summer trip adventure.  I’m late in writing this post as the first few days is actually a find Waldo kind of day.  I can say it now but we are heading to Iowa to surprise Thelma’s cousin for the 4th of July.  She has no idea we’re coming and we haven’t told a soul where we are going on our trip.  The plan is to show up at the Gowrie 4th of July Parade as we know where cousin Mary will be sitting and just show up.  It’s a 3 day trip so along the way we are posting on FB how many miles away from Prescott we are.  We are not saying what direction only the mileage.  It is a fun game as people on both sides of myself and Thelma are trying to guess where we are and where we are going.  So I had to wait until the big surprise to write this post.

They make me find which road to take...

They make me find which road to take…

Our first stop in route was Holbrook Arizona.  Our main reason is because it is the county seat for Navajo County.  I will talk about the county seat in a seperate post as we are also trying to visit all the county seats in all 15 counties of Arizona.  Not on this trip, but in the next several months we hope to have them all completed.  We are more than halfway done.

Holbrook has many interesting sites as it sits right on the original Route 66.  I would go into more details about Route 66 and it’s hidden treasures, but our plan is to return home by following the original Route 66 all the way from Chicago Illinois to Santa Monica Pier in California.  So again I’m going to hold off on sharing the interesting Route 66 icons until later in the trip.

I'm a road dog.

I’m a road dog.

So we are staying in Albuquerque New Mexico for our first night. The RV is doing great on the road and we are enjoying the comforts of RV driving.  Gracie is having a ball as she usually has to stay home with a dog sitter when we go on a big trip, but this year she is going along for the ride.  Since we have made this part of the trip several times we are not stopping much, as we have seen all these sites…and the goal is to get to Iowa in 3 days.  Today’s adventure took us 436 miles from Prescott, and we are in a great RV park and enjoying life.

 

 

Thelma Speaks:  Waiting for this day to leave has been difficult!  Trying to not tell Mary we are coming has been very tricky while trying to glean information!  But on the road we are and ready to enjoy the new RV!  So let the fun begin!

We stopped in Holbrook  and did several things but that is for later…so I will just say we got gas from a very nice station even though it took 2 recites since we drink a lot of gas in a motor home and if you know us,  you know DQ is always the stop of choice for a sweet treat along the way!  Holbrook has a nice one with plenty of room for the RV.

So button down and enjoy the ride off we go after a great first night stop in Albuquerque, New Mexico!

Gracie loved the playground….. for dogs!

 


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Deer Farm, Williams, AZ

100_6291Louise Speaks:  This is one of those spots to take the kids to on your way to or from the Grand Canyon or the Williams Train Depot.  It’s a bit off the freeway but they give very good directions, and even though there are dirt roads and turns here and there it is pretty easy to find.

The Deer Farm does not just have deer, but it is a petting zoo where the animals walk around freely and you are able to feed most of them.

100_6292For over 40 years, the Deer Farm has been enjoyed by animal lovers of all ages.  The Deer Farm actually raises their animals from babies and this allows for very intimate human contact.  The farm actually has staff on site around the clock to care for the animals.  Prior to going we had checked on what to expect and one thing we were told was that we should not wear “good” clothes as the animals are curious and will chew on your clothes, shoe laces and even hats.  We weren’t sure what to expect, but we knew it was going to be an adventure.

When you first arrive you enter through a very well stocked gift shop.  This is not just your normal gift shop.  Oh sure, they have souvenirs but they also have clothing, toys, toiletries, jewelry, home decor and other items that express America, and Arizona both past and present.  This is also where you pay your entrance fees and buy the food to feed the animals.

cockatielOnce outside the door you are greeted by a white cockatiel.  This bird really does talk and repeats whatever you say….including cuss words…lol.  A staff member walks around with you and tells you a bit about every animal you meet.

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When you first go through the gate you are greeted by a group of deer, and the group keeps getting bigger and bigger, and believe me they know that you have food.  I can only imagine if we didn’t have food what they would be searching for.

100_6300The farm is basically a U shape area where you walk around and see all the different animals.  Only the deer roam freely, but the other animals come to the fence once they see you coming.  It was close to the end of the day and it was beginning to rain a bit so many of the animals just stayed in their sheltered areas and we had to see them from afar.  The staff pointed out the newborn animals and you can tell how dearly they are cared for.

100_6301Several of the animals are normal zoo animals like the  buffalo, camel, goats, etc, but for someone who hadn’t seen animals up close and personal it was a great experience.  Unlike your regular zoo, because they have always been raised by and around humans, you are able to pet them and feed them.  My grandson seemed to enjoy feeding the deer and they didn’t attack him nearly as much as they attacked me.

This was a fun stop, but not one that I would put high on my list.  It is very small and a bit over priced for what you see.  I’m assuming our entrance fee helps feed and takes care of the animals, so with that thought in mind, it’s worth it.  I’m thinking they could throw the food in for free.  I’d rate the Deer Farm a C.  A cool stop, but seeing it once is enough.

Thelma Speaks: