A lot of people got excited on social media the other day with a story about the possibility of the long-closed Budville Trading Co. in New Mexico reopening.
However, a closer look at the story itself reveals nothing new or noteworthy. It makes one wonder why Albuquerque TV station KRQE did anything at all.
Here’s the video:
Here’s the key part of the story:
Peterson’s family said they want to reopen the store, hoping it becomes a popular spot for people traveling along Route 66.
“It’s got a lot of possibilities,” said Peterson.
But so far, no set plans for the infamous site.
Stories about the unethical activities of longtime Budville owner Bud Rice and two unsolved homicides there more than 50 years ago deserve attention and have gotten it. Route 66 Magazine and other publications — including the recently published book “Murder and Mayhem on the Main Street of America” by Jim Hinckley — have dived into the details.
One reason the killings remain unsolved is Rice made so many enemies with his dirty dealings, there was no lack of potential suspects. There’s no way Budville’s activities would survive in the modern day; online reviews would savage it, and the state’s attorney general probably would shut it down.
But the “hopes to reopen” news hook for Budville in the story conveniently overlooks the fact other plans to reopen the store have failed. As an example, a story on Route 66 News way back in late 2006 reported about a young couple set to reopen Budville in time for Christmas, and they even secured a Budvilletrading.com domain on the internet. But he reopening never happened.
Based on the track record of the property, one has to regard the talk of reopening Budville as talk and nothing else.
I hope I’m proven wrong.
(Image of Budville in New Mexico in 2009 by jaygannett via Flickr)