All posts tagged: Mary Colter

Sacred Places

After two wonderful days at the Grand Canyon, we headed out on Tuesday – but not before making a stop at Mary Colter’s beautiful Desert View Watchtower at the eastern entrance to the park.  Colter designed this gift shop and observation tower for the Fred Harvey Company in a way that appears to blend into the landscape.  She also brought in Hopi artist Fred Kabotie to paint the interior of the tower with symbols that depict various elements of Hopi mythology and religious ceremony.  There is a great reverence for the Native American culture here in Colter’s work.  Click on the link above for a description of the construction of the tower.  This structure is also featured on the beautiful cover photograph of my colleague Arnold Berke’s wonderful book on Mary Colter. After leaving the Grand Canyon, we headed to Utah, driving through the magnificent Monument Valley of Arizona and Utah.  Read the Wikipedia write up linked above to begin to understand the geological and tourism aspects of this wonderful place, but it is best understood …

Take It Easy

“Standing on the corner in Winslow, Arizona; What a fine sight to see…” But I get ahead of myself. Sunday was a big travel day on our western trip, but we did manage to see some great historic sites and landscapes, eat a couple of nice meals, and recall a part of our youth. Sunday morning we left the first of three hotels with a great history that we visited that day.  El Rancho in Gallup, New Mexico bills itself as the “Home of the Movie Stars” – as long as you mean movie stars of the 1930s-1950s.  We stayed in the Spencer Tracy Room and had fun walking through this funky western-style lobby (see photo below) looking at pictures of Errol Flynn, an early Fred McMurray, Katherine Hepburn, and the like.  We left El Rancho and found a great local breakfast diner in Gallup – called My Sister’s Place – that reminded us of the Beverly Restaurant in Staunton and the City Cafe in Murfreesboro (two of our favorite family breakfast restaurants).  Suitably fortified …