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A Jan. 27, 2000, file photo shows visitors driving through the town of Baker, Calif. as the world's tallest thermometer stands in the background. / Mark J. Terrill, AP

BAKER, Calif. (AP) - A giant thermometer rising from the Southern California desert is once again a beacon for tourists headed to and from Las Vegas.

The roadside attraction off Interstate 15 in Baker was relit Thursday after a top-to-bottom renovation.

The July 10 date is significant: it was on the same day in 1913 that the hottest official temperature on Earth was recorded in Death Valley.

Willis Herron built the thermometer to a height of 134 feet to match that record.

Herron's widow, Barbara, says it made her sad to see the Baker landmark - billed as the "World's Largest Thermometer" - fall into disrepair in recent years.

Her family took it over again, aiming to make its 5,000 light bulbs glow once more - although they've now been replaced with energy-saving LEDs.



Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Read the original story: World's largest thermometer repaired in California

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