Lea County offers many forms of recreational and leisure opportunities to its residents and guests. The great weather allows many outdoor activities to be done throughout the year. Residents enjoy all forms of organized sports and several sports organizations are available for all age groups, including swimming, archery, golf, hang gliding and soaring, hunting, fishing, horseback riding, jogging, bike riding, basketball, baseball, softball, t-ball, tennis, roller skating, bowling and soccer, to list a few. Sports in Lea County are only limited by your ability and imagination.
For the auto enthusiast, the local auto drag strip offers both head-to-head drag racing and timed (bracketed) drag racing. All car classes are accepted and spectators are welcomed. For off-road vehicle owners, there are plenty of opportunities to drive your vehicles. Make sure that if it is private land to get permission, though much of Lea County is either state or federal land. Organized motorcycle groups are welcomed to Lea County and several events just for motorcycles are scheduled throughout the year. We have several motorcycle dealers in the area to take care of special problems if you have one.
Water sports are another great way to experience Lea County. Most of Lea County’s water is underground in our Ogallala aquifer, and that which is on top is used to its fullest. Each community has public-operated swimming pools, several of them with a water park setting and picnic grounds close by. Again, because of the weather, swimming is a year-round activity and makes for a full summer.
There are several fishing “holes” in the area, with fish stocked by the State Fish and Game Department. Fishing licenses are required for adults and teens; children under 11 can fish without a license.
The early morning and evening brings out the bikers, walkers and runners. Because of the low humidity, our hot is hot but not wet, so many people take advantage of the cool morning and evening to exercise and stretch their limits. Lea County is noted for its flat surfaces and dedicated jogging, biking and walking trails. This is a safe and healthy activity for young and old alike.
Indoor sports also make-up and take-up a lot of Lea County residents and guests’ time and energy. From organized bridge games to formal painting sessions, there is something for everyone who wants to stay indoors. We pride ourselves on having some of the best facilities in New Mexico for our senior citizens and children. Monthly schedules of events and activities can be found on the various city web sites.
ZIA PARK – BLACK GOLD CASINO
Live horse racing is featured during the month of September through December. Newly opened Zia Park offers live horse racing every Saturday through Tuesday with video parimutuel betting on several out of state race tracks everyday. The Black Gold Casino features machine type gaming, poker, slots, 21, keno and other electronic gaming. The casino was built and designed to resemble a Las Vegas-style facility and is the first in the state to be built as a casino. The casino is also home of the Black Gold Steak House and Home Stretch Buffet, both providing world-class food to patrons. Las Vegas-style gaming in a small-town setting makes it pay.