Archive for the ‘Southern Arizona Attractions’ Category
Last Saturday, my family & I saw our second performance at the Arizona Folklore Preserve. We truly enjoy this fine little theater set in one of our most beautiful canyons. We first experienced this unique place back in May when we went to hear Dolin Ellis, Arizona’s Official Balladeer.
On this most recent trip we enjoyed an excellent performance by singer/songwriter Michael Grande’. No doubt we’ll return again and again as other guest performers are featured.
Holiday Nights at Tohono Chul Park
Now that Thanksgiving is over (burp!), it’s time to start thinking about that next special season. Hopefully, you were not one of the trillion humanoids out on our roads over the past few days. I’ve never seen Tucson roads so crowded. It is literally true that on Wednesday late afternoon, it took me 20 minutes to drive from Oracle Road to the Freeway on Grant Road. There was that much traffic. Unbelievable.
Anyway, our family will soon visit Tohono Chul’s Holiday Nights. This celebration of the Season occurs over the next 3 Friday & Saturday nights, 5:30 PM to 8:30 PM. There will be music & dance performances throughout each evening.
Admission & Performances: Members $10; General Public $15.
Reservations: 520.742.6455 X 501
I notice on our SouthernArizonaGuide.com Events Calendar that there is quite a bit happening this coming weekend. Many of these happenings could be included in our Things To Do With Kids section. Ms. Karen, my 94-year-old father, & I will be doing a photo shoot at Tohono Chul Park’s Holiday Nights. I’d like to go to the Bisbee Historic Home Tour, but with our granddaughter & her boyfriend coming for Thanksgiving, I imagine a trail ride at Tanque Verde Guest Ranch or Colossal Cave Mountain Park will be in order.
On a different note, I have posted several features & reviews on our website recently. If you are a subscriber (FREE), you have already received them in our weekly email newsletter.
- Just How Good Is Overland Trout? We were driving through Sonoita in a driving rain last Saturday and stopped to check it out.
- Is The Arizona Inn The Best Hotel In Tucson? This is not our traditional dining & lodging review. Check it out and you’ll see why.
- Is Anyone Really Buried In Boothill Graveyard? After significant research, we finally debunk another Tombstone myth.
For those of you who are interested in our Southern Arizona history & cultural heritage, I have just received notice from the Park Rangers at Mission Tumacacori about their upcoming events. All of them appeal to me as a photographer as well as a history buff.
Tours to Calabazas and Guevavi Missions
January 11 & 25, February 8 & 22, March 8 & 22, 2014 Saturdays, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
The ruins of Missions Los Santos Angeles de Guevavi and San Cayetano de Calabazas, normally closed to the public, can be visited via special guided van and walking tours.
Tours leave from the Tumacácori visitor center.
$25 per person, RESERVATIONS REQUIRED
Reservations are made online through: www.recreation.gov
Anza Trail River Walks
January 4 & 18, February 1 & 15, March 1, 15 & 29, 2014 Saturdays, 10:30 a.m.
Guided walks leave from the visitor center to walk to the Santa Cruz River. One hour, 1/2 mile round trip. The walk is on a level, unpaved trail: wear comfortable walking shoes and bring
October – December, Saturday and Sunday; January – April, Wednesday through Sunday 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Artisans demonstrate traditional crafts on the grounds of Mission San José de Tumacácori. Demonstrations may include tortilla making, paper flower making, pottery, or O’odham basket weaving.
Tumacacori At Night
Experience Tumacácori at night, under the light of a full moon or a galaxy of stars. Tours may be offered. Call for details.Full Moon Nights Tuesday, December 17, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Wednesday, January 15, 6:00 – 8:00 p.m. Friday, February 14, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 15, 7:30 – 9:30 p.m. Starry Saturdays November 23, 6:30 – 8:30 p.m. March 29, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m. April 26, 7:30 – 9:30 p.m.
We have 3 brief original videos in which Park Ranger Anita gives an enlightening tour of the old mission and cemetery. Go to SouthernArizonaGuide.com > Home > Videos.
You can get more information at Mission Tumacacori website.
When our 4 grandchildren were young, my job as Grandpa was weekly field trips. I would scout out venues that were educational, but also interesting to young people. We ranged all over Southern California taking in the zoos, railroad parks, natural history museums, including the La Brea Tar Pits, historic forts, old movie sets, Griffith Park Observatory, and so much more. I looked for places where they could learn about the world, but also burn off some of their natural exuberance.
But I don’t recall anything like Tucson’s Children’s Museum. If you have young children, say toddler to age 10, and you’ve never taken them downtown to what was the old Public Library, you really owe it to your young ones & yourself to go.
If you have visited the Children’s Museum, but not lately, return now. An extensive renovation & expansion with a ton of new interactive exhibits, arts & crafts space, & special events have made it a new & richer experience.
Recently, while on tour of the new facilities, I watched toddlers developing their motor skills in a safe environment, 4, 5, & 6-year-olds, developing their artistic skills & imagination, and 8 & 9-year-olds figuring out how some of the elements of our physical world work, such as gravity, light, & electricity.
With innovative programs, the staff of the Children’s Museum emphasizes reading & creativity, as well plenty of fun.
To me as an adult, one of the most interesting, & clever permanent exhibits was the Mini Nano Exhibit: how very, very tiny materials act and interact differently than large objects. There are several other new science exhibits included in “Investigation Station” that feature hands-on activities in Science, Technology, Engineering and Math.
They have imaginative exhibits that teach young children about nutrition, grocery shopping, pet care, and body parts, such as mouth, nose, and heart.
The Museum also has a great space for birthday parties. Their courtyard is perfect for picnics. Or if you wish, you can call ahead to one of our local pizza parlors and have lunch delivered to the Museum.
Special events are common at the Children’s Museum, many tied to holiday themes and often feature music. Be sure to check the Museum’s Events Calendar.
Admission is $6 for children; $8 for adults, but senior adults are only $6. This may sound pricy, but if you purchase an annual membership you can save a bunch. For example, membership for one adult & two children is only $60 for a year of unlimited admissions.
On the second Saturday of each month, admission is $2. Saturday November 23rd is El Tour de Tucson downtown, which is a FREE day at the Museum, as is Sunday December 1st.
They didn’t have anything like Tucson Children’s Museum when I was growing up. In fact, they didn’t have anything like it when I was helping to raise our grandkids. Parents today sure have it easy.
Take your young kids or grandkids to the Children’s Museum. They will enjoy it and so will you.
For other ideas about activities for children, go to our Things To Do In Tucson With Kids section on SouthernArizonaGuide.com.
Children’s Museum of Tucson
200 S 6th Ave., Tucson, AZ 85701
Hours: Tuesday – Friday 9 to 5. Weekends: 10 to 5. Closed Mondays; Thanksgiving, Christmas, & Easter.
Ms. Karen & I visited Tohono Chul Park last Sunday. We go there several times a year, usually with visiting guests, so membership makes sense for us. On this occasion, we wanted to check out their Sunday brunch for our upcoming feature on the Best Sunday Brunch in Tucson. We also wanted to see their new Desert Palm Oasis.
If you haven’t experienced it yet, do visit Tohono Chul Park’s new Desert Palm Oasis. They have created a reproduction of the ecology in the canyons near Guaymas, Mexico along the Gulf of California coast where 3 species of fan palms thrive. These rare palms are only found north of the border in a canyon near Yuma. At Tohono Chul you will find a pleasant, accessible walk along a stream and small pond with other plants native to to these canyons, such as Nacapule Jasmine.
You can view our brief Tohono Chul Park original video & find out more about their beautiful gardens, art galleries, and highly rated Garden Bistro at our website: SouthernArizonaGuide.com > Attractions > Parks / Gardens.
Last Friday night, Neighbor Roy & I ventured down into Colossal Cave to photograph their candlelight cave tour during the annual Halloween Howl. If you’d like to see what we found down near the bottom of the cave, here’s the link to the slideshow on our SouthernArizonaGuide.com.
Halloween Howl also includes a haunted hayride and other fun activities for children.Only two nights left: this coming Friday & Saturday nights; October 25th & 26th.
Definitely recommended for people who are not afraid of the dark.
I was going to photograph the Rotary Club’s Classic Car Show on the East Side of Tucson tomorrow morning. However, I belatedly realized tomorrow is Anza Day at Tubac & Tumacacori. The Spanish soldiers mount up at 9 AM at the Fiesta Grounds on the north side of Tumacacori Mission. Swords, lances, muskets, and banners … such an imposing sight they must have presented in 16th century New Spain.
Mass at the Old Church is at 10 AM. I particularly want to be there for Mass. Not to photograph it. That would be sacrilegious. When we went two years ago a 13-year-old girl sang the Ave Maria … the most beautiful rendition I have ever heard … made all that more glorious by the acoustics of the Old Church. Now 15, this “Voice Of An Angel” will sing once again.
Then at about 10:45 AM, the priest will bless the Conquistadors and their mounts and off they will go on the grueling 4 mile ride along the Santa Cruz River north to El Presidio de Tubac. About noon or shortly after the riders will arrive at the festivities taking place throughout the Village until about 4 PM.
Ms. Karen plans to walk the 4 miles with the horses. I’m going to drive up to Tubac and start walking south along the River to get some pictures as the riders near the Village in all their military splendor.
Maybe see you there?
If you’re looking for something different, scary, & fun to do with the kids, put this event on your calendar right now.
The 14th annual Halloween Howl at Colossal Cave Mountain Park is this Friday & Saturday nights (October 18th & 19th) and the following weekend (October 25th -27th) from 5 PM to 9 PM.
- Candlelight Ghost Tours: Experience Colossal Cave the way the spirits do.
- Haunted Hayrides through the dark & ghostly La Posta Quemada Ranch. The Ranch is 134 years old, so no telling how many spirits reside there.
- Halloween Carnival: Jumping Castle, Thrilling Maze, Pony Rides, Petting Zoo, Food.
For more information and reservations:
Admission to the Park: $1 or a can of food.
Tours & Hayrides: $7. Age 3 & Under Free with paid admission.
We have several original videos about Colossal Cave Mountain Park. You can view them at SouthernArizonaGuide.com > Main Menu > Attractions > Parks/Gardens > Colossal Cave.
Native American Weavers To Show Off Baskets At AZ State Museum
At the Arizona State Museum on Saturday, November 2nd will be Wonder Weavers: An Arizona Basketry Festival from 11 a.m.–3 p.m. This event is on the front lawn of the Museum and is Free.
The festival celebrates the enduring basketry traditions of our state’s Native cultures, honors modern-day weavers, and encourages the continuation of the ancient art form. It is both a show and sale.
You can meet more than a dozen Native weavers from across the state, including Akimel O’odham, Apache, Chemehuevi, Hopi, Navajo, and Tohono O’odham.
There will be music and dance performances, and lots of food vendors.
You can view more Southern Arizona arts, photography, and crafts at our Gallery/Artists section on SouthernArizonaGuide.com
As far as I know, Diana Madaras is Southern Arizona’s most recognized artist. I think her paintings are so popular because they just make people happy.
Which is why I mention here that Diana will unveil 25 new paintings at her annual “Heart Beat” show Sunday October 20th. The Artist Reception is from 1-4 PM at the Madaras Gallery in Gallery Row at Campbell & Skyline.
The beauty of our Sonoran Desert is colorfully depicted in a new triptych called “After a Good Rain.” The show will also feature an abstract desert landscape, an impressionistic painting of the desert that surrounds the hidden fairways at Starr Pass golf course, southwest architecture from Tucson and scenes from a ranch in Tubac. Plus bold and fanciful paintings of flowers in typical Madaras fashion.
Admission to the opening of Diana’s Annual Show is free but an RSVP is required- call 520-623-4000. The collection will remain on display through November 17th.