The new owner of the Frontier Motel and Restaurant complex in Truxton, Ariz., announced on its Facebook page this week that two New Mexico residents — Allen Greer and his fiancée Stacy Moores — will become the historic Route 66 motel and cafe’s managers.
New Zealand resident Sam Murray, owner of Gilligan’s Wild West Tours, announced in November he was buying the complex. Former co-owner Mildred Barker operated the motel and cafe from 1957 until shortly before her death at age 87 in August 2012.
Renovations will begin in March, with the hope of reopening in June or July. Murray also wants to eventually reopen the gas station across the road — also formerly owned by the Barkers — and convert it into a tavern.
Shortly after Murray’s announcement of the purchase, he put out the word he was looking for a couple of Route 66 aficionados to run the place full-time.
In answers to emailed questions, Greer explained how he and Moores ended up being the Frontier’s caretakers:
“In August of 2013 Stacy and I did a Route 66 trip from Albuquerque to California. She was still kinda new to the hobby and hadn’t seen The Road. I have family in Bakersfield so we covered most of the road between Albuquerque and Barstow. On the way back we were passing through Truxton and noticed that they were having a yard sale. We stopped and started chatting with the owners, and that’s when we learned the property was for sale. We were so excited! All the way home we talked about how cool it would be to buy it and how we’d restore it to original. We had so many ideas! The reality though was that we were in no position to buy it and the excitement faded.
“Then in January of this year someone on one of the Route 66 Facebook pages cross-posted the announcement from the Frontier’s Facebook page that they were looking for a couple to lease the property and run it. I could hardly believe what I was reading! I called Stacy over to the computer and when it hit what she was reading she actually gasped. I sent the new owner Sam Murray a message right away and said ‘we need to talk’. After a few weeks of Sam and I comparing our visions we reached an agreement and the rest is history.”
Greer said he wasn’t sure where he traced his passion of Route 66, but noted he often traveled that corridor to see family in California and New Mexico during the past 30 years.
Of course all those years ago I had no idea there were others in the world who shared my passion. I guess I’m just a history guy in general, really,” he said.
Moores said her fascination with Route 66 began with a visit to the Route 66 hamlet of Newkirk, N.M.
“… We would take little trips on the weekends and explore ghost towns, old highways and anything else old and interesting. I’d always liked old stuff but never really got into exploring and researching until I met Allen,” she said.
Greer said he resides in the Albuquerque suburb of Rio Rancho and is in the power transmission industry. Moores, also of Rio Rancho, described herself as a stay-at-home mother to three children, but holds a background in music promotion, modeling and singing in the Denver area.
Greer and Moores said they are so excited about the upcoming move, they now plan to get married at the motel. “No definite date has been set, though, since we’ll be so busy when we open.”
(Image of the Frontier Motel sign by scrappy! via Flickr; image of Allen Greer and Stacy Moore courtesy of the couple)