386 W. Rio
Communities Blvd.

P.O. Box 8
Belen, NM 87002
(505) 864-6654
fax (505) 864-2826

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Rio Communities Local Culture

Artist Armando Alvarez spent a May 1998 Saturday morning discussing his interpretation of the diverse groups of people who traveled El Camino Reál through history.  His vision is reflected in the above sculptures, at the bottom of Tomé Hill (in Area 1).  The sculptures include a 25-foot high arch and life-sized figures representing the people who traveled the corridor, from Native Americans of the pre-sixteenth century to railroaders of the 1880s.

The sculpture, La Puerta del Sol, is part of "El Camino Reál–Cultural Corridors Public Art on Scenic Highways" project.  Funding for the sculpture came from Federal Highway Administration Enhancement funds, New Mexico State Highway and Transportation Department, New Mexico Arts Division, Valencia County and Valley Improvement Association.

High atop Tomé Hill stand the three crosses of a calvario.  A sacred service is held there on Good Friday of each year.  

An excellent brochure about historic and sacred Tomé Hill is available; click here to go to the Greater Belen Chamber of Commerce web site.

La Puerta del Sol, August 2001

The Tierra del Sol Country Club and Golf Course are in Area 5


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