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Bye, Blue Angel: Motel comes down, but the iconic figurehead will remain

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Photo: Bryan McCormick

Blue Angel Motel Demolition

A shoddy paintjob on the Blue Angel Motel’s iconic vintage signs last fall sent a shockwave through the community strong enough to stir discussion at a Historic Preservation Commission meeting.

No surprise, given the devotion to that area’s Googie-style signage as well as the statuesque, golden-haired angel watching over the neighborhood, earning herself quasi-religious status.

Now that demolition of the dilapidated Mid-Century buildings is underway—the Vegas Motel razed this week and Blue Angel Motel up next—Arnold Stalk, planning and development consultant for owners of both properties, reiterates that plans to preserve the signs remain. The Angel, he says, is mounted on a pole and will stay when the building is gone. (Imagine a giant swizzle stick.)

Monitoring all of this closely, along with other community members, are Neon Museum representatives keenly aware of the vulnerable status of design relics in this town. Executive Director Danielle Kelly says the museum is ready to assist should something go awry. “There is a wonderful survey of sign design on that corner. We’ve been in dialogue with the representatives, and the Neon Museum has offered to extend our support to keep the signs, specifically the Blue Angel, in the community.”

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