Central Arizona: 'Tis the season!

‘Tis the season to shop boutiques, visit museums and galleries and explore natural treasures.

The cooler autumn temperatures provide an excellent environment for strolling through central Arizona’s downtown business districts, the Arizona State Fair and Thunderbird Artists’ art festivals. The beautiful weather also makes it a perfect time to explore the area’s city, state and national parks and monuments. Enjoy! 

BOUTIQUES

BabyLux provides a unique boutique concept dedicated to all things baby! Located in Scottsdale at Market Street at DC Ranch and at the SHOPS Gainey Village, BabyLux offers everything you will need for your new bundle of joy, from birth to age 10. BabyLux offers discerning mothers and grandmothers (fathers and grandfathers, too!) exclusive gifts that will not be found at big-box retailers, as well as services including photography, nursery design, educational classes and events for new moms. BabyLux’s friendly and informative team understands that expecting a child is the most exciting time in your life and will be there to assist you with every step. Witness for yourself why BabyLux is an invaluable resource to all “BabyLux Moms.” www.babyluxonline.com 

Buffalo Collection embellishes “a state of mind and a way of life.” Experience the ultimate in luxury, comfort and design with American Buffalo Leather Furniture. The furniture is handmade in America using the finest materials and methods of Old-World craftsmanship. Let  Buffalo Collection enrich your lifestyle by creating timeless custom furnishings for your home – regardless of its location. Located at 7044 E. 5th Avenue in Old Town Scottsdale. www.buffalocollection.com 

CULTURE/ART

Del E. Webb Center for the Performing Arts, located in Wickenburg, Arizona provides a wide array of great family entertainment. Enjoy top acts in circus, comedy, music and theater in a beautiful, comfortable and acoustic environment. Advance tickets are available for Zoppé – An Italian Family Circus, Lonestar, Bill Engvall, Frankie Avalon and many more! Order your tickets online at dewpac.org

Musical Instrument Museum provides a one-of-a-kind experience for visitors of all ages. Explore a “world of music” with over 6,500 instruments on display from around the world. Musical Instrument Museum (MIM) is ranked among the top 20 museums in the United States by TripAdvisor.com. Visit themim.org for more information and to purchase tickets. 

Thunderbird Artists, established in 1981, is the leading producer of award- winning fine art and wine festivals
in the Southwest. their mission is to promote fine arts and fine crafts, while supporting the artists, local merchants and surrounding communities. Each festival is juried and includes unparalleled wine tasting and live musical entertainment, creating an ambiance like no other and ensuring a first-class experience for all who attend. For their 2017-18 season, Thunderbird Artists has increased its signature events to include festivals within Carefree, Fountain Hills, Gilbert, Scottsdale and Surprise. www. thunderbirdartists.com 

NATURAL TREASURES

Casa Grande Ruins National Monument, Coolidge, Arizona, has been a meeting plance and a landmark for more than 650 years. Come explore the mystery and complexity of an extended network of communities and irrigation canals. An ancient Sonoran Desert people's farming community and "Great House" are preserved at Casa Grande Ruins. Whether Casa Grande was a gathering place for the desert people or simply a waypoint marker in an extensive system of canals and trading partners is but part of the mystique of the ruins. www.nps.gov/cagr/index6.6htm

Desert Botanical Gardens, located in Phoenix, is home to the annual Las Noches de las Luminarias. This year, the garden will be aglow for 21 magical evenings and will feature more than 8,000 hand-lit luminaria bags, thousands of white twinkle lights and the sights and sounds of 10 unique entertainment ensembles. Experience the bold, monumental sculptures of Japanese American artist Jun Kaneko throughout the Garden trails. Enjoy dinner at the garden with family and friends, and stroll each path with a warm cup of cider or cocoa. The Southwest elegance and beauty of the garden at night will remind you of what the season is all about. www.dbg.org 

Named after the fabled lost gold mine, Lost Dutchman State Park is located in the Sonoran Desert, 40 miles east of Phoenix. Several trails lead from the park to the Superstition Wilderness and surrounding Tonto National Forest. Take a stroll along the Native Plant Trail or hike the challenging Siphon Draw Trail to the top of the Flatiron. Enjoy a weekend of camping, and experience native wildlife, including mule deer, coyotes, javelinas and jackrabbits. A four-mile moutain bike loop-trail has opened at the park, so you can now enjoy the park's beauty while biking!azstateparks.com/lostdutchman

Arizona's Salt River Tubing & Recreation provides for a cool and wet adventure. Spend the day or an afternoon tubing the Lower Salt River rapides in beautiful Tonto National Forest near Mesa, Arizona! Just minuts from Phoenix, the Salt River is a recreational paradise that offers "chills and thrills" while floating on cool and refreshing mountain-stream waters. Enjoy a “floating picnic” and experience the natural wonders of the Salt River! You may choose two, three and five-hour trips that include float time and shuttle-bus ride - weather and water flow permitting. Tube rentals and shuttle service are available seven days a week starting at 9 a.m. for a very reasonable $17 per person/tube. Group reservations are available for tubing Mon.- Fri., excluding holidays.www. visitphoenix.com/listing/arizonas-salt- river-tubing-%26-recreation/53/

South Mountain Park is a point of pride for Phoenix. As the largest municipally-operated park in the United States, it is an enjoyable place for hiking, biking, scenic drives and beautiful vistas of the Valley. Bring a mountain bike, horse or your boots. The extensive network of trails begs to be explored. Make a day of it with plenty of covered spaces for a picnic or barbeque - some spots even allow peritted alcohol and music for an outdoor bash. Featuring amazing views of the city and natural desert from the trail, South Mountain has become a retreat for outdoor enthusiasts. www.phoenix.gov/parks/trails/locations/south-mountain


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25 Oct 2017


By Elaine Earle