• View of Square Tower House, seen along the Mesa Top Loop

    Mesa Verde

    National Park Colorado

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Open House Successful Thanks to Locals

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Date: January 4, 2012
Contact: Betty Lieurance, 970-529-4608

Mesa Verde's Holiday Open House on December 8, 2011 was a great success, thanks to local citizens and businesses that supported the special event, said Superintendent Cliff Spencer. "It was a real pleasure to see so many people in the park on a chilly December evening," he said.

About 1200 people entered the park to see the 2000 luminarias that lined the drives and trails in the Chapin Mesa Historic District, and to visit Spruce Tree House, which was illuminated. Visitors also enjoyed complimentary hot drinks, chili, and holiday cookies, thanks to Mesa Verde National Park partners ARAMARK/Mesa Verde Company and the Mesa Verde Museum Association, and to the City Market in Cortez, which donated cookies. Musicians from around the Four Corners area shared their talents with the public, performing in the Museum auditorium, on the porch of the historic Superintendent's House, and at Spruce Tree House. "It's a once a year celebration of the upcoming holiday season," said Spencer. "We're grateful to everyone who contributed and to everyone who joined us to celebrate."

The Mesa Verde Holiday Open House is held annually on the second Thursday in December.

Did You Know?

Photograph of Cliff Palace, 1895 - 1900 by WH Jackson

On a snowy December day in 1888, while ranchers Richard Wetherill and Charlie Mason searched Mesa Verde’s canyons for stray cattle, they unexpectedly came upon Cliff Palace for the first time. The following year, the Wetherill brothers and Mason explored an additional 182 cliff dwellings.