|South Park City|
Perhaps Fairplay's main claim to fame is the fact that the TV series "South Park" is "virtually" based here, named after the area of grassland meadows that lies between the foothills and the Sawatch Mountains. Most people pass through Fairplay on the way to Buena Vista, Salida, Gunnison, and would be forgiven for thinking that the "South Park City" museum is a tourist trap, this is far from the truth though, as you will discover below.
|J.A. Merriam Drug Store|
The museum is made up of 35 original buildings, 7 of which are in their original location. All of the buildings are open to wander into, and each one is a museum within a museum, as you can see from the wonderfully decked out drug store above.
|General Store, South Park Sentinel & Doctor's Office|
|Period pieces make the buildings come alive|
The US forest ranger's building was particularly interesting to me since my profession is a Land Surveyor, old maps adorned the walls and other interesting artefacts. Far less appealing was the Dentist office, especially since I have just had the pleasure of having a cavity filled, although it did make me glad I was not living in the 1800's.
|US Forest Ranger cabin and Dentist office|
|US Forest Ranger office|
|Dental Office & Barber|
Back in the mid-1800's, if you were a carpenter, you likely also had the job of constructing coffins. The Carpenter Shop come Morgue displays early woodworking tools and relics associated with burial.
No town is complete without a school, and South Park City has the original school house from a town 9 miles east of Fairplay. This school was built in 1879 and is furnished to match that time period.
|1879 school house|
In the days when horses were your only form of transportation and burros and oxen were used in mining, the Blacksmith was a very busy man. Not only did he re-shoe the working animals, but he also repaired mining equipment and wagons.