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RUIDOSO, New Mexico (KOAT). In April, a devastating fire broke out in one of New Mexico’s most popular tourist destinations, burning more than 200 homes. Tourism declined after the fire, but two months later it bounces back.
The village of Ruidoso is located in the Sierra Blanca mountains. New Mexicans and out-of-states enjoy visiting Ruyodoso because of the rich wildlife, lakes, and mountain scenery.
“We offer fishing, boats, vibits (water inflatable boats), as many as nine yards. Family environment,” said Jason Seidenberger, co-owner of Dam House.
But when the fire broke out in McBride on April 12, “I would absolutely say that we had a lull after the fire,” Seidenberger said.
Business has slowed at Dam House, a food and boat rental shop by the lake.
“That was to be expected. A tragic event has happened,” Seidenberger said.
More than 200 homes died in the McBride fire. But when tragedy strikes, the village comes together.
“It was stunning. It brought us together. We are all neighbors and we care about each other,” Ruidoso Mayor Lynn Crawford said.
After the fire was extinguished, a lull in tourism was restored.
“Business has picked up. I’ve talked to many hotels that are 90-95 percent full. They’re full,” Crawford said.
Many people prefer to enjoy the lake.
“We see anywhere from 2,000 to 3,000 people coming in a week,” Seidenberger said.
Many in Ruidoso rely on tourism as a source of income. While part of the community is recovering from the fire, locals say the best way to support is to get some rest and relaxation in Ruidoso.
“Come live in the paradise of nature. It’s wonderful here,” Seidenberger said.
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