Deming is a small town in the southwestern region of New Mexico, USA. It has attained a quirky sort of fame as the site of the Great American Duck Race, one of those little bits of Americana sometimes encountered in very small towns. Interesting country is nearby for the geologist and hiker.
Deming is on Interstate highway 10, about 60 miles west of Las Cruces and about 80 miles east of the Arizona state line. There is no air service nearby; the closest significant airport is in El Paso, Texas, 50 miles south of Las Cruces.
Deming is a stop along Amtrak's Sunset Limited line, which runs three times a week. The depot is located at 400 East Railroad Avenue.
Deming Luna Mimbres Museum, 301 S. Silver Ave., +1 575 536-2382. Open M-Sa 9-4, Su 1:30-4; closed major holidays. Fee $2 for adults, children free with adult. Native American artifacts and items of local color.
Great American Duck Race. The 2006 version was on August 24-27; dates for the 2007 edition apparently haven't been set yet, but expect it to be the last weekend in August. This amazingly quirky event defies description; the photo of the "2006 Duck Queen" on the website (above) is worth a thousand words (even if most of them are "quack") and nearly as many laughs.
There's only basic shopping, but souvenirs of the Great American Duck Race are every bit as whimsical as the race itself.
El Mirador, 510 E. Pine St., +1 575 544-7340. Open 7 days, 6 am-9 pm. Tolerable Mexican, nothing special but quite edible.
Palma's Italian Grill, 110 S. Silver Ave., +1 575 544-3100. Tu-Sa 11AM-8PM (8:30 on Friday), Su 11AM-3PM, closed Mondays. Basic Italian-American.
The Adobe Deli About 10 miles east of town on old NM 549. Not the easiest place to find but you'll be glad when you found it. One of the best steaks for miles. The atmosphere is well worth the trip. They even have a place for you to tie up your horse.
Two wineries, yes, two wineries are present in this desert landscape. Neither one charges for tasting and both charge reasonable prices for their wine.
Luna Rossa Winery is visible from the highway on the frontage road going into town on I-10 eastbound.
St. Clair Vineyards is a larger operation than Luna Rossa. There are signs in town directing you to the vineyard. Warning: their website blasts annoying music.
Best Western Mimbres Valley Inn, 1500 W. Pine (exit 81 on I-10), +1 575 546-4544.
Grand Motor Inn, 1721 E. Pine (exit 85 on I-10), +1 575 546-2632. Restaurant on the premises.
La Quinta Inn and Suites, 4300 E Pine(exit 85 on I-10), +1 575 546-0600. Free WiFi. Free Continental Breakfast.
Rockhound State Park is about 5 miles south of town, and is notable as one of the few state or national parks where visitors are encouraged to remove natural features -- specifically the unusual minerals found in abundance there that make it a rockhound's playground. (There's a "bag limit;" check the web site for details.) Day use $5/vehicle; there are a number of campsites (extra fee).
City of Rocks State Park is about 30 miles north via US 180, with weird rock formations reminiscent of the better-known Chiricahua National Monument in Arizona. Unlike at Rockhound, you can't take the rocks home with you, but they're accessible to the hiker. Day hikes, camping, stargazing; fee.
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