For Immediate Release
May 12, 2015
Contact: Carrie Hamblen, Las Cruces Green Chamber of Commerce, 575-496-5242
Community highlights monumental impact on 1st Anniversary of Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks
Diverse local events, special offers and a new web site put new National Monument front and center
(LAS CRUCES) – Las Cruces community and business leaders are kicking off a week of celebrations and special events to celebrate and highlight the first anniversary of the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monument, which was established on May 21, 2014. The events run from May 15 to May 23, 2015, and are detailed atwww.LocalLasCruces.com/OMDPweek.
In addition to special events, hikes, an interfaith service and special offers from local businesses, Las Cruces small-business owners have also come forward talk about the monument and its impact on their companies.
“Having the monument is a gift to our community because not only does it permanently protect important and sacred places on our doorstep, it also is becoming a boon to local tourism, hospitality and outdoor industry businesses that have begun using the monument to market our community and promote Las Cruces,” said Carrie Hamblen, Executive Director of the Las Cruces Green Chamber of Commerce.
The chamber recently conducted a survey of member businesses and found:
• 65 percent of businesses surveyed say they field questions from customers about the Organ Mountains-Deserts Peak National Monument.
• 32 percent of businesses surveyed use the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks National Monuments in their promotional and marketing materials.
• 20 percent of businesses surveyed have already introduced new products or services directly related to the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks including: mountain bike tours, specialty drinks, running tours, wilderness first-aid classes, iconic monument photography and monument-inspired desserts.
• More than 30 percent of the businesses surveyed said they plan to celebrate the monument’s anniversary with special offers including: discounts on hiking and fitness gear, online hotel discounts, specialty dishes named after the monument and outdoor recreation tours featuring the monument.
In addition, several local business owners have shared their experiences about the impact the monument has had on their companies through business profiles.
One company, the Green Chile Paddy Wagon food truck, said it felt a boost in interest about the monument from walk-up customers.
“We have had to buy more food … and many people at the Saturday Farmers and Craft Market say they are going to OMDP while they are visiting,” said Patrick Payne of the Green Chili Paddy Wagon.
David Crider, owner of Southwest Expeditions, agreed. “Thanks to the Organ Mountains-Desert Peaks designation, I have seen more interest in outdoor tourism and as a result, have expanded the menu of services I offer – including mountain bike tours and wilderness first-aid classes. Clearly, the monument has allowed my business to grow.”
“It took more than a decade of community effort to get the monument designated and now we must put in the work to properly promote it so that the benefits of protecting these public lands are enjoyed by all Las Crucens and anyone else who comes and falls in love with our community,” Hamblen said. “We have a great story to tell and the monument helps us tell it.”