Arkansas Valley Fairground Adobe Stables

Year Listed: 2007
County: Otero County
Construction Date: 1938
Threat When Listed: Deterioration
Status: IN PROGRESS
 
 

In 1878, the founder of Rocky Ford, G.W. Swink shared his bountiful watermelon crop with passengers at the Rocky Ford Depot and the Arkansas Valley Fiar began.  Today, the Arkansas Valley Fairgrounds hosts Colorado’s oldest continuous fair. The Adobe Stables were constructed as a project of the Works Progress Administration (WPA) and are a rare intact example of exposed adobe brick.

The Adobe Stables were the site of Colorado Preservation, Inc.’s second annual weekend workshop series, where through the efforts of a number of preservation partners and volunteers, twenty-five of the stables were rehabilitated for use.  The City of Rocky Ford has made the restoration of the stables a top priority and has conducted subsequent community workdays to make and lay hundreds of traditionally formed adobe bricks.  The goal is to have all the stables fully operational once again able to house horses during the fair and special events.

The Stables were added to the National Register of Historic Places in December of 2007.

 

Additional Links:
Attend the Arkansas Valley Fair!
City of Rocky Ford

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Featured Project

4 Bar 4 Ranch

Homesteaded in 1895 by Dick McQueary to provide a stop for the Georgetown Stage Line, the 320-acre 4 Bar 4 Ranch has strong ties to Grand County and Colorado's heritage. The Georgetown Stage Line traveled on the road through the 4 Bar 4 Ranch from Idaho Springs to Hot Sulphur Springs over Berthoud Pass. In 1895 a roadhouse and stage stop were constructed on the ranch. The hotel and barn were constructed using trees from the Ranch property, and the hotel remained open for travelers coming over Berthoud Pass by horseback and wagon until 1913. With the coming of the automobile, the roadway over Berthoud Pass and through the 4 Bar 4 Ranch was considered an integral part of the Trans-Continental “Midland Trail” highway. Following the closing of the stage line, the ranch continued to host travelers until 1912 or 1913 when it was purchased and converted into a Ford Motor Company . Ford vehicles were sold here until 1917, when Harry Larkin purchased the ranch site. Today emergency efforts are underway to ensure it survives through the winter. Donations are in need. To learn more, contact Jennifer Orrigo Charles at jorrigocharlges@coloradopreservation.org.

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