Did ABQ Passport skip the South Valley?

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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — Visit Albuquerque has unveiled a new digital experience for visitors and locals during the Balloon Fiesta, ABQ Passport.

“It’s a mobile, exclusive digital pass that will encourage visitors and residents to explore all of Albuquerque’s neighborhoods during Balloon Fiesta,” said Rachel Howard, the director of marketing for Visit Albuquerque. “It’s also a contest which will be running from Sept. 26 to Oct. 15.”

On the digital pass, users can scroll through 200 different local businesses and restaurants and check in during the three-week period of this event.

There are many options to visit, but one significant part of Albuquerque was left out – the South Valley.

“I would like to see inclusion, like more people being involved, most of all here and around this area as well,” said Amairani de la Cruz, an employee at Burritos Alinstante. “I feel like they kind of step away from this area quite a bit, so it’d be nice to kind of have more of the South Valley around.”

Visit Albuquerque said they are open to working with many businesses across the city.

“We’re happy to include more restaurants, businesses, things to do in the South Valley and in any other neighborhoods throughout Albuquerque,” Howard said. “Businesses can join Visit Albuquerque and become Visit Albuquerque partners.”

However, having the resources to partner isn’t always possible, especially for smaller businesses and restaurants.

“You know, maybe they didn’t have the resources to be able to participate or become a partner,” said Klarissa Pena, District 3 Councilor. “This is something that we definitely need to look at, to make sure that we are more inclusive and more diverse in terms of how we’re highlighting our city.”

Councilor Pena believe it is important to include all communities when highlighting the Duke City.

“So it’s just these things that as we look at equity and diversity, that we can’t, you know, exclude communities that make up Albuquerque,” Pena said.