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"The Thing," a famous highway pit stop and museum, is back open

(Source: Tucson News Now)
(Source: Tucson News Now)
Updated: Aug. 25, 2018 at 3:37 PM MST
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(Source: Tucson News Now)
(Source: Tucson News Now)

BENSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - "The Thing," a mysterious creature museum and classic highway pit stop, is back open after some major renovations.

Located at exit 322 along Interstate 10 east of Tucson, the owners have expanded the museum, now dedicated to "The Thing's" origin story. The new museum opened Saturday morning.

"The response has been overwhelmingly positive," says Mike Bingen, operations manager at the site. "Everybody is always in the 'wow' factor when they are in there, and of course we have "The Thing," which everyone is curious to see."

The highway stop has been open since 1965, but more than $3 million in renovations has owners hoping to entice even more road trippers to stop in and take a look.

"I think this is going to be a great destination spot," says Myles Erwin, the general manager of billboard operations for Bowlin, the company that owns the stop. "It's not going to be just a road side stop anymore, it's going to bbe a place that people definely want to come to."

The stop has also tripled the size of its merchandise shop.

"We hope people take a look and appreciate the changes," says Erwin, who was one of the curators who helped development the museum. "We spent a lot of time and put in a lot of hard work, and I think it shows."

The new museum opened August 25, but a grand opening will take place Saturday, September 1.