Seeing the big picture

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Leadership Los Alamos class gets an overview of the area’s history

By Kirsten Laskey

“If you’re looking at quality of life … (and) not looking at a cultural context … you’re going to miss the boat,” said Mimi Roberts. Roberts administers the partnership between New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs and the Media Arts Program at New Mexico Highlands University. She spoke to the Leadership Los Alamos class Friday at Bandelier National Monument.

So how do you catch the cultural boat? With a little bit of awareness, sensitivity and curiosity.

Apparently this is a lesson that Los Alamos is skilled in. Roberts noted last year the county applied and received an Arts and Culture District title. The program, which is part of Gov. Bill Richardson’s Arts and Culture Initiative, had previously chosen Silver City and Las Vegas, N.M., as Arts and Cultures Districts. She added Los Alamos is the first to apply and be selected for this distinction based on history as opposed to the arts. However, the title is not exclusively for history.

“It’s really competitive to be selected,” Roberts said.

Los Alamos Leadership got an overview of the area’s famous history from Georgia Strickfaden, a docent at Los Alamos Historical Museum and owner of Buffalo Tours, and Andrew Ortega, a seventh-generation Chimayo weaver and owner of Galeria Ortega.

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