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“Loved this place, the shop, museum and especially the people”

Casa Grande Trading Post & Petting Zoo
Ranked #4 of 11 things to do in Cerrillos
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Attraction details
Owner description: Todd & Patricia Brown are owners of the Casa Grande Trading Post, Mining Museum and Petting Zoo. They live in a 19-room adobe hacienda that they built themselves. They make jewelry from rare Cerrillos Turquoise and Variscite from their two mining claims. The turquoise is brilliant green, while Cerrillos Variscite is white. They cut and polish the stones and set them in silver. Todd uses techniques developed when he first came to Cerrillos in 1970. Their son Andy follows his dad's footsteps, working with him at the mines. He is also as an artisan who does custom jewelry & repairs. Visit the Mining Museum, admission $2. A sprawling display on local history, prehistoric mining and territorial mines of the 1880's. Items include antique bottles, mine photos, tools, minerals and the unique finds of an 1880's Cerrillos outhouse dig. The Petting Zoo is a barn yard of several friendly goats, llama, chickens and pigeons. Animal food is for sale in the gift shop. Children enjoy the live entertainment and a stop will add to your adventures on The Turquoise Trail.
Reviewed June 1, 2013

We have been here twice - once in September 2007 and again in May 2013 - both times we found the owners Todd & Pat helpful and lovely and we are crazy about their museum. It isn't pretentious it takes you through both time and the process of mining. It is personal and taught us about life in the area as well as the family who built it with their own hands. The Brown's mine the turquoise found only here, sell it, and sell jewelry made from it - world wide. This place is a gem. We will go back every time we are in the area. The pricing is a steal compare to anything we saw in Santa Fe (that wasn't shipped in from China) We highly recommend a visit. Also while we don't have kids to report on the petting zoo we did see an entire school bus of young kids absolutely loving the petting zoo!

Thank Alex T
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peleliu52, Owner at Casa Grande Trading Post & Petting Zoo, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2014

We're glad you enjoyed the place as much as we do. Hope to see you again.

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51 - 55 of 58 reviews

Reviewed April 7, 2013

I loved feeding and dicking around with all the animals at the Cerrillos Petting Zoo! The only negative is that there was no place to wash my hands that were covered in animal spit. I'm pretty sure I contaminated the rest of New Mexico by the end of this day.

Thank EricaVedder
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peleliu52, Owner at Casa Grande Trading Post & Petting Zoo, responded to this reviewResponded August 18, 2013

There is sanitizer available in the gift shop.

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Reviewed January 24, 2013

"Jerk" is too kind for the owner of this place. The first thing he did when I walked in the door was insult me. The last thing he was doing as I left was insulting the next person coming in. And, in between, when I asked him to tell me something about mining his own turquoise and making the jewelry, his response was to ask me how much money I was going to spend. If I was going to ask a question, I would have to spend some money first.

The "museum" and "petting zoo"... aren't. Don't be fooled. The "museum" is a tiny closet in the back with a couple of old tools. And for $2, you can stick your arm through a double-walled fence that's so deep, you can just get your hand far enough through for an animal to take the food. Young children's arms aren't even going to be long enough to make it through the fence, much less actually pet something.

Yeah, there's a rock shop, but there are a LOT of rock shops. Don't subject yourself or your family to the abuse here.

3  Thank GlyphGirl_CO
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peleliu52, Owner at Casa Grande Trading Post & Petting Zoo, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2014

Sorry you had such a bad time. Hope you come back to visit again and walk the museum with its thousands of artifacts in four large rooms. We'll try harder to help you have a good experience next time.

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Reviewed September 14, 2012

We came through Cerrillos for horseback riding and the scenic drive to Madrid so we stopped by this quirky little "ghost" town and visited the trading post. I loved the shop. All kinds of rocks, native and from areas nearby. Great place to pick up an inexpensive souvenier for the kids too.

I did see the entrance to the museum at the back of the store but didn't have time to wander through. Looked like they had a lot of turquoise and mining stuff though - I bet it was interesting. Kids liked the animals.

All together our visit was about 20 minutes. I'd go back again when in the area. The owners were extremely nice as well.

1  Thank NotUrTypicalChick
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peleliu52, Owner at Casa Grande Trading Post & Petting Zoo, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2014

Glad you had a good experience. That is our goal.

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Reviewed September 9, 2012

I guess I'm glad we stopped, but the "Trading Post" was basically a big rock shop, with the majority of the rocks and gemstones not being from the area. There was some fun jewelry, and we did make a couple very small purchases, mostly because we felt we should. I don't know if the "Museum" part wasn't open or what, but we never saw it. Petting zoo kind of cute, I guess, but we thought the llama was dead.... "Scenic Overlook" was pretty much of a joke considering what you've just been driving through to get there....

1  Thank WhitePineLane
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Peleliu52, Owner at Casa Grande Trading Post & Petting Zoo, responded to this reviewResponded September 11, 2014

We sell rocks, gifts & bottles. This is what we advertise. The mining museum is $2 admission and the entrance is at the end of the rock room. The llama always takes a nap in the middle of the day and our scenic views extends to the Rio Grande valley with views of Devils Throne, Buffalo Mountain, the San Marcos Arroyo & Galisteo River basin.

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