Contact: Eleanor Sanchez 277-1813 or
Carolyn Gonzales 277-5920

January 29, 2001


As New Mexico and the nation prepare to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee of historic Route 66 this summer, the University of New Mexico, a route resident, joins the festivities with several events designed to showcase the state's flagship university on the Mother Road.

UNM will have a tent set up near the Bookstore during the celebration July 20-22. Visitors can pick up a "passport" with a map to various campus locations featuring Route 66 events. Get your passport stamped at all locations and be eligible to win prizes.

UNM Recreational Services will host a variety of family-oriented activities. A climbing wall will be available, interactive children's games and family swimming are some of the events. Others include house tours and volleyball nets set up for fun competition. The Recreational Services Getaway Adventure Program will host a Route 66 adventure.

The nation's largest mariachi event, Mariachi Spectacular, is scheduled to coincide with the Diamond Jubilee. Mariachi performances are scheduled for each of the three days, both downtown and at the New Mexico State Fairgrounds.
The University's Alumni Homecoming committee has selected Route 66 as its theme for the 2001 Homecoming celebration. The date for Homecoming is yet to be determined, but crowd favorite events such as the Parade of Lights, tailgate parties and a Lobo football game are anticipated events.

The University Art Museum will feature an exhibition of Gus Foster's large-scale panoramas of Route 66 through Albuquerque. In the downstairs area of the museum, work from the permanent collection that pays homage to the great east-west road will be featured.

The UNM General Library will feature a 90-minute video about Route 66 to be shown in the Willard Reading Room in Zimmerman Library on the three days in July. It will be shown Friday, July 20 from noon to 5:30 p.m.; Saturday and Sunday, July 21-22 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Additionally the Friends of the UNM Libraries, Inc. will sponsor a lecture on Route 66 on Friday, July 20 at 10:30 a.m. in the Willard Reading Room.

KNME, the Public Broadcasting Station jointly owned and operated by UNM and the Albuquerque Public Schools, received a grant from Phillips Petroleum to do a documentary about Route 66. Plans are in the works to have that film shown on campus during the celebration.

The University Honors program is conducting a seminar, "Route 66 - An American Road."

Although UNM is still developing many of its plans to celebrate the 75th anniversary of historic Route 66, UNM has been involved in the life of the road long before it became known as Route 66. The University was established on site, now on Central Avenue back in 1889. The name of the road downtown was Railroad Ave., but up on the hill, the road didn't have a name.

By 1892, a wagon, drawn by six horses, would bring the students up the dirt road and Ms. Parsons, who served as both the auditor and home economics teacher for the early University on the mesa, would collect the five-cent fare from its passengers.
UNM and Route 66 both share a legacy firmly rooted in history. Both protect and preserve their histories with an eye on the road leading their travelers into promising futures.

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The University of New Mexico
Public Affairs Department
Hodgin Hall, 2nd floor
Albuquerque, NM 87131-0011
Telephone: (505) 277-5813
Fax: (505) 277-1981