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Alamogordo is the county seat of Otero County and a city in south-central New Mexico. It was incorporated in 1912. Its population at the 2000 census was 35,582. It is the nearest city to Holloman Air Force Base. The city is essentially a desert community lying in the Tularosa Basin, and is bordered on the east by the Sacramento Mountains. Alamogordo is famous for the Atari video game burial of 1983, as well as its connection with the Trinity test, the first explosion of a nuclear (atomic) bomb.
The region has had human habitation for the last 11,000 years. The present settlement was established in 1898 to support the construction of the El Paso and Northeastern Railroad. It is an early example of a planned community. During the 1950-60s, the city was an unofficial center for research on pilot safety and the developing United States' space program. The local government provides a number of recreational options as well as social services, including a large park in the center of the city, many smaller parks scattered through the city, a golf course, Alameda Park Zoo, a network of walking paths, Alamogordo Public Library, and a senior citizens' center. Gerald Champion Regional Medical Center is a nonprofit shared military/civilian facility that is also the hospital for Holloman.
Alamogordo has a primarily service and retail economy that draws its customers from tourists and from active-duty and retired military personnel. The city has a public school system, a branch of New Mexico State University, and the New Mexico School for the Blind and Visually Impaired; thus education is also a significant contributor to the economy. The city's gross receipts tax funds incentives for new businesses, which are recruited by the nonprofit Otero County Economic Development Council. A number of movies and TV series are also shot here, which brings in revenue. The sectors employing the maximum number of people are construction, retail trade, health services, accomodation and food services, public administration and the federal offices.
Cultural events held here include the Earth Day Fair, the Otero County Fair, the Cottonwood Arts and Crafts Festival, and many more. The New Mexico Museum of Space History is a state museum housing artifacts related to space flight.
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