Friday, November 7, 2014

Taos: A Solar-Powered Radio Station, a Frog, a Marmot, and Flaco Claus

On those rare occasions when my wife and I vacation, we try to find a small piece of art to purchase as a momento of our trip. On our recent trip to New Mexico, we went all crazy - we bought a tiny painting from a man who called himself "Ray Suncatcher" and we bought two photos from the Field Institute of Taos. Those photos arrived in the mail this week. I opened the envelope and had the opportunity to re-live a great day in Taos.

The frog is my wife's (a great irony considering her thoughts on frogs) and the marmot (impersonating a walrus) is mine.

Before leaving for Taos, we were given a phenomenal gift. Our good friend Keith, whose name shows up on MH often, wrote out a very informal travel guide of things to do (and eat) in Taos. He sent us many places and never steered us wrong. If you ever get the chance to get your own Keith travel guide, jump all over it!

From Keith's Guide

·         KTAO is a solar powered radio station that also has a very informal bar inside where you can sip your beverage and watch the dj put on music.  I mean. . . . he's a few feet away and if you yell profanities, it will go over the air.  They also have a stage outside and a small stage inside.  It's a really unique place, and I highly recommend it on your way out of Taos. 

After reading that, we knew we had to go by KTAO.

View of the front door

The place was a madhouse. Before we made it through the front door, a really skinny Santa Claus pulled up in his sleigh followed by a few dozen Harleys. Lots of other people were there for the local ski equipment swap meet, and the Field Institute of Taos was having a fundraiser in front of the DJ booth. (This discouraged us from yelling profanities, snagit!)

The view behind the place

But the Field Institute is pretty darned cool! They are a non-profit that offers camps and programs to teach kids about nature and fitness. They even teach photography and mountain biking. One of their fundraisers at KTAO was the sale of photos the kids had taken, which is how we ended up with a frog and a marmot to hang in our house.
You can check them out here:

The view from inside the bar

The view of the massive solar carport - what could be cooler?
(Okay, having the largest broadcast area of any solar-powered radio station in the world is a bit cooler than having a really big solar carport.)

Some random tourists smiling near the logo

May you find yourself in a great place buying frog and marmot photos to send a kid to camp. I highly recommend it.