Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Early season for Quartzsite?

As the fall travel season gets under way perhaps your mind turns to that self-proclaimed Snowbird Capital--Quartzsite. What's new in the little desert town? If local prognosticators prove true, this could be a big--and early season.

Down at the post office counter man Reuben says the summer doldrums are a thing of the past. On Monday (the 17th) he reported that there was plenty of traffic keeping him busy up at the counter. The good folks down at the local hardware haven (Herb's) are rolling back into "winter hours" this coming Monday the 25th.

No, we can't report that there's been a huge "land grab" on BLM locations. Up north on the short term areas only one brave soul appeares to be living on the land. Nevertheless, the weather is working in favor of early arrivals. Usually the nasty mugginess associated with the summer monsoon hangs on like a virus right up to the start of October; this year most of the humidity fled by mid-September.

A few changes will greet winter visitors: Adding to the shopping opportunities, Quartzsite's newest fame-claim is yet another dollar store. Dollar General has built a new facility on the B-10 (Main Street) across the street from the Big Market. As we've mentioned, the Best Mexican Restaurant not far west from there has given way to a new (and pretty good) eatery called the Q-Town Cafe. Locals have taken refuge from the heat (and empty stomachs) at Q-Town all summer.

On a sad note, real jerky lovers will mourn the closure of the Jerky Store and More, famous for its meat sticks and propane. You can't gas up in more ways than one now, as Bob and Alice shut their doors and have moved to Oregon, leaving the place vacant with an unknown future.

Other changes include government, where the number of officials on "administrative leave," seems to change on an almost daily basis. Even the local papers can't seem to keep up with the musical chairs they're playing up on Plymouth Street. At this time the police chief, town manager, and assistant town manager are cooling their heels at home, Monday through Friday on the town dime.