Author Archives: Cory Bergquist

Cory Bergquist

About Cory Bergquist

Cory is a recent graduate from Arizona State University with a BFA in Art (Intermedia). He enjoys all aspects of video production from filming to creating original soundtracks. He is also a freelance photographer.

Grand Canyon Railway

All Aboard The Grand Canyon Railway! [PHOTOS]

All aboard the Grand Canyon Railway!

Visitors from all over the world come to Arizona to visit the Grand Canyon, whether it be via flight, road trip or bus ride.

But one of the most calming, scenic ways to get the Grand Canyon is the Grand Canyon Railway — a two-and-a-half to three hour ride through the mountains and plains with musical performances, games, trivia, folklore and history, and surprises along the way — including an old-fashioned shoot out and train robbery!

According to the Grand Canyon Railway’s website, each train engine and each train car has been restored to its original state by the staff.

Once we all made it to the Grand Canyon we were free to roam the area for about three hours before we had to be back on the train. This gave us all plenty of time to soak in the sights and really enjoy the whole experience.

If you’re interested in going, here are the rates:

 Coach ClassAdults: $75.00 | Children: $45.00 First ClassAdults: $140.00 | Children: $110.00
Observation DomeAdults: $170.00 Luxury Parlor ClassAdults: $190.00

Check out these photos from this very family-friendly tour as well as my stroll at the Grand Canyon:

Grand Canyon Railway

For more information about the Grand Canyon Railway, visit


Waste Management Phoenix Open

Waste Management Phoenix Open 2012 [PHOTOS]

Sunshine, well-groomed grass, cold drinks and plenty of interesting people — all found at the Waste Management Phoenix Open.

I had been hearing about the Phoenix Open for as long as I can remember, but I never had a chance to see it for myself. This was my chance to finally dive in and enjoy the festivities.

As soon as I walked into the gate, I was greeted by a number of friendly vendors, all happy to give me a free sample of their product. There was everything from cheap pens to alcoholic ice cream. People were testing their skills on simulation golf games and others were looking through designer clothes.

As soon as I got enough swag to last me through the day, I continued on in search of some golf!

It was a beautiful day, and I enjoyed taking in the scenery, the smell of food and all of the interesting people that had come to enjoy the weekend.

After a number of hours without shade, I was happy to see the sun begin to set, and I made my way over to the Birds Nest. Here the theme went from “leisure” to “let’s party!”

After a couple excellent cover bands, DJ Ronnie G took the stage to get everyone moving with his combination of dance music and a custom visual production.

After a full day and night of sightseeing and energetic dancing, I was very tired and very pleased with my stay at the Phoenix Open, as I’m sure the rest of my fellow attendees were as well.

Photos from the Waste Management Phoenix Open:

Phoenix Open

View the entire album on Flickr.


Catwalk-for-a-Cause 3D fashion show

Catwalk-for-a-Cause 3D Fashion Show At Barrett-Jackson [PHOTOS]

After a quick shuttle ride on a super-sized golf cart, I was entering the Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction on my way to the Catwalk-for-a-Cause 3D fashion show, featuring ETCETERA fashions.

Walking along the pavement listening to the quick announcements of what sounded like a heated auction for one of many impressive cars, I made my way to the Lifestyle Pavilion and left the constant sound of numbers for the constant beat of a DJ playing top-10 dance songs.

A projection on the far wall showed different clothing designers and events as different spot lights made motions through the crowd.

Multiple vendors lined the walls, each with a unique booath full of purses, jewelry, furniture, food and more. All of these vendors were the focuses of the tent, until the fashion show started. A 3D fashion show was something I had never heard of, so I was excited to see how it would turn out.

After putting on the 3D glasses, an entertaining introduction flew across the projection screen with a glass-shattering effect. Soon after, a 3D video of a runway model walking toward the audience came into view. As the video of the model past the screen, the real model came from behind the curtain and began her walk down the runway.

Despite the timing of the video being a little off, the idea of a 3D fashion show was amusing and also included a dance sequence, where real dancers performed a routine while the same dancers were seen on the projection above them in 3D.

The music kept playing throughout the event, thanks to DJ Exxxclusive, and the energy was kept high. The crowd cheered as different models made their way down the runway, making the Lifestyle tent a successful break from the standard Barrett Jackson experience.

Check out these photos from the Catwalk-for-a-Cause 3D fashion show at the Barrett-Jackson Lifestyle Pavilion:

[slickr-flickr tag="Barrett-Jackson" items="20" type="sets" id="68507495@N04"]

Downtown Phoenix

Looking Up In Downtown Phoenix

Looking Up In Downtown Phoenix

Conquering the skyline is part of becoming a major city.

I have always been intrigued by the beauty in architecture. The structured lines and distinct shapes are such a contrast to the elements of nature that surround them.

I finally got a chance to take a bit of a test run around Phoenix, Ariz. and really try to capture some of the buildings there.

These photos were all taken on one street, all within about a block of each other. I see this as a test run because I plan on really sinking my teeth into downtown Phoenix and getting the best shots I possibly can.

I have a lot more ground to cover and will add new content as I progress through the city.

Photos of downtown Phoenix:

[slickr-flickr tag="Downtown-Phoenix-Buildings" items="18" type="sets" id="68507495@N04"]

Visit this album on Flickr.

2011 Tempe Festival of the Arts

Taking Frames At The 2011 Tempe Festival Of The Arts

Taking Frames At The 2011 Tempe Festival Of The Arts

Colors, shapes, big and small, perfect weather on a beautiful day — I couldn’t ask for much more! Once again I found myself on Mill Avenue in downtown Tempe, Ariz.

This time however, I was not there for dancing, food or drinks. I was there for the 2011 Tempe Festival of the Arts, which was held Dec. 2-4.

The entire main strip of Mill Avenue was packed with tents that were filled with all sorts of artists and their work. With items ranging from photography to sculpture, and cellphones to clothing, there was something for everyone!

The majority of the tents were lined up in the middle of the street facing the sidewalk. Some artists stayed diligently in their space with their work close by, while others roamed around talking to fellow art enthusiasts setting up their work in the immediate area.

I was taken back by the almost overwhelming amount of objects in all shapes, colors and sizes. It was a feast for the eyes, and I wanted to stop and look at everything. Every step I took, a new discovery was in my line of sight.

I enjoyed the contrast of seeing all of the small white tents that would only be there for a few days, surrounded by the buildings of Mill Avenue that have been standing for many years.

I was happy to see that local artists were getting a chance to showcase and sell their work away from all of the warehouse retail stores. This little stretch of culture lent itself perfectly to the festival, almost as if this was how Mill Ave. was meant to be.

Spirits were high as a never ending surge of art supporters made their way from one end of the festival to the other, keeping their heads on a swivel for anything that might catch their eye.

Check out these photos from the 2011 Tempe Festival of the Arts:

[slickr-flickr tag="Tempe-Festival-Arts" items="15" type="sets" id="68507495@N04"]

[stextbox id="info"]For more information about the Tempe Festival of the Arts visit[/stextbox]


Casino Del Sol Resort Hotel

Casino Del Sol Resort Hotel Expansion

I had the chance to check out Casino Del Sol Resort Hotel in Tucson and its brand new, multimillion-dollar hotel expansion.

From the second I walked in, I was taken back by the effort that went into making this hotel stand above the rest. The ceilings were high, the rooms were spacious, and the pool was so gorgeous I don’t think it would be possible to take a bad photograph of it.

As I made my way onto the casino floor, I looked up and was happily surprised to see a beautiful dome that was created to look like the sky. With colorful lighting and wonderful architecture on all sides, this was definitely another perfect photo op.

I also had the chance to eat at the PY Steakhouse. Placed in a small room that seats about 100 patrons, the decor and food lead to a very satisfying meal.

The Casino Del Sol surrounded me with all sorts of photo opportunities; I had a great time and would gladly return again.

Casino Del Sol Resort Hotel photos:

[slickr-flickr tag="CasinoDelSol" items="20" type="sets" id="68507495@N04"]

View the album on Flickr.

Tour de Fat 2011

Tour De Fat 2011 At Tempe Beach Park

Bikes, food, music, plenty to drink and plenty of smiling faces filled the Tempe Beach Park for Tour de Fat 2011.

Every direction I looked, one-of-a-kind bikes rolled in one direction or another. Along with fully-themed costumes and plenty of live entertainment, it was easy to enjoy myself.

A band poured up beat music out of the speakers at the main Tour de Fat stage, entertaining plenty of energized dancers, while at the second stage, comedy acts kept the crowd laughing.

Here are some photos from my first Tour de Fat (click on the photo to expand):

 Tour De Fat, Tempe Beach Park Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park
A swarm of bodies and bikes could be seen in every direction. Booths with food, and others with plenty to drink were dotted through Tempe Town Lake, all full of smiling faces. A large section of Tempe Town Lake was formed into a giant, dedicated bike rack; however, many people chose to bring their bikes with them and show off their style. Here we can see a wristband booth where IDs were checked for age.
 Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park  Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park
A group of Hula Hoopers swaying to the music in front of the stage at Tour de Fat. Some struggle to keep their plastic circle in motion, and others confidently keep multiple hoops up at once. Tons of costumes could be seen at Tour de Fat. Anything from a group of people that appeared to be straight out of the movie Mad Max, to a flurry of ballerina tutus.
 Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park  Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park
An interesting bike, with tires that resembled inner tubes that would normally be found in a swimming pool, cruises around one of the beer lines soaking in the sun rays. All sorts of decorated bikes could be found cruising through Tempe Town Lake. This tricycle turned pirate ship was one of my favorites.
 Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park
Ready to rock at Tour de Fat at Tempe Town Lake! With live music, plenty of willing and rowdy dancers, it was easy to have a great time! Live music at Tour de Fat. This particular band had a particular sound that resembled folk mixed with gypsy rock. Tons of fun!
 Tour De Fat 2011, Tempe Beach Park
After a healthy serving of live music, contestants were called to the stage to compete for a free bicycle! In a mock dating show, contestants had to woo the slender piece of metal with clever words and agile performances.


Phoenix Fashion Week 2011

Snapshot: Phoenix Fashion Week 2011

I had the chance to go to Phoenix Fashion Week at the Talking Stick Resort and take as many pictures as I could manage!

Getting a media pass is always fun for me. And this was no exception.

I got to dive in with the rest of the photographers at the end of the runway. Each of us positioned ourselves carefully to get the standard straight-on shot, or the slightly-angled shot from off the left or right of the runway. Many photographers brought benches and long monopods to get over the heads of everyone else.

The audience diligently took in each design as it went down the runway into the storm of flashes given off by the photographers. Loud music that ranged from popular dance jams to classic hits by the Beatles played on the speakers to keep the energy up, and everyone had a great time.

With all sorts of different styles and designs, there was something there for everyone to enjoy.

[slickr-flickr tag="phoenixfashionweek" items="20" type="sets" id="68507495@N04"]

[stextbox id="grey"]Want to see more photos from Phoenix Fashion Week 2011? Visit Scottsdale Living’s website, where you’ll also find recaps of Thursday and Saturday nights’ runway shows.[/stextbox]

Fashion by Robert Black

Q&A With Robert Black Of Fashion By Robert Black [VIDEO]

AZNow.Biz sat down with Robert Black, who co-owns the vintage couture boutique Fashion by Robert Black, located in downtown Scottsdale, Ariz.

Robert Black and co-owner Doreen Picerne traveled and shopped around the world, handpicking clothing and accessories for the store — items you won’t find anywhere else in Scottsdale, including vintage red carpet couture, special occasion designer pieces, accessories and other one-of-a-kind finds.

Black spoke with us about how Fashion by Robert Black came about, his marketing strategies, his thoughts about opening a business in this economic climate, and his future plans for his company.


[stextbox id="grey"]

Fashion by Robert Black

7144 East 1st Avenue
Scottsdale, Arizona
(480) 664-7770



Studio 5, Kelly Cappelli

Studio 5: Photography and Music Studio with Kelly Cappelli

A Crash Course on Studio 5

By Kristine Cannon

Kelly Cappelli of Studio 5 educates us about her photography and music production studio, located in an abandoned elementary school.

Cappelli discusses why it was chosen to locate the studio in an elementary school, and she also touches on her past and present projects as well as the success of Studio 5 thus far.

Video by Cory Bergquist

The Studio 5 Scoop: Studio5 Presents

By Kristine Cannon

Studio 5 recently began showcasing four bands, seven days a week, rotating nine shows at Center Stage Bar at Hyatt Gainey Resort in Scottsdale.

“This is a partnership between Studio 5 and the Hyatt for at least the next year,” Cappelli says.

Produced by Myles David Lancette of Studio5 Presents, the opening event featured Lea Cappelli, Myles David Lancette, Spain and The Waters. These four artists and musical groups performed for over 300 attendees at each show during its opening weekend at the Hyatt.

“It was extremely successful, and the community has already been buzzing about the shows,” Cappelli says, “There have been many people returning to see the full 90-minute shows all week long.”

Cappelli says Studio 5 is an incredible opportunity for the artists as well as an amazing partnership between the Hyatt and Studio 5.

“The Hyatt is a fantastic venue and a wonderful platform for each musician to shine and bring quality music to the Hyatt and our community and expand their fan base,” Cappelli says.

For more information about Studio5 Presents as well as dates for future shows with Lea Cappelli, Myles David Lancette, Spain and The Waters, visit

Spain performs The Civil Wars’ “Barton Hollow”:

Video by Cory Bergquist

[stextbox id="grey"]Studio 5
1201 N. 85th Pl., Suite 106
Scottsdale, AZ 85257
(480) 390-5791[/stextbox]

Lava River Cave, Flagstaff

Lava River Cave And Snowbowl Adventures

A day of hiking in Flagstaff, Ariz. in the Lava River Cave and on one of the San Francisco Peaks’ trails, Kachina Peak, was exactly what I needed to refresh my mind (and lungs).

I was taken back by the feeling of being completely surrounded by darkness, underground, in 40 degree temperatures (during the Arizona summer!) with only a flashlight to guide me in the Lava River Cave.

Every now and then I’d turn off my flashlight and immediately have zero visibility. It was a strange feeling, but somehow calming.

Along the walls of the Lava River Cave were designs and patterns that formed into what looked like all sorts of different faces. These designs, probably overlooked by most, are one of the most interesting things about the cave.

From deep underground, to high above it, the Skyride was an easy lift all the way up to the top of Snowbowl. Great views in every direction, and a whole lot of green color that I wasn’t used to seeing in the city, kept me occupied as thoughts of falling out of my chair quickly disappeared.

Once at the top, clouds floated above me and cast shadows on the ground below, keeping me steady somewhere in between.

With so many beautiful things to see all packed into one amazing day, I was a bit sad to return to the concrete jungle. I will be back for another healthy dose of nature soon.

Here are some photos from my adventures underground through the Lava River Cave and high above on the Skyride:

[slickr-flickr tag="lavarivercave" items="20" type="sets" id="62045641@N08"]   [stextbox id="grey"]To view these photos in larger sizes, check out the album on my Flickr account.[/stextbox]


Jacob Meders, Heard Museum, Arist Profile

Artist Profile of Jacob Meders, Heard Museum: Art as a Business

Artist Profile: Jacob Meders

AZNow.Biz took a trip to the Heard Museum in central Phoenix, where we met up with local artist and printmaker, Jacob Meders. Meders spoke with us about his unique art on display in the Something Old, Something New, Nothing Borrowed Exhibit and in the Berlin Gallery, as well as choosing art as a career, and viewing art as a business.

Jacob Meders focuses his art work on altered perceptions of place, culture and identity of indigenous peoples; reexamining documentations of Native Americans, and challenging new perceptions of Native Americans.

A recent graduate of ASU’s Printmaking Program (MFA), Meders discusses the importance of art and how it develops one’s mind and “helps expand the creative, abstract thought part of one’s brain.”

Meders continues to say that much more social interaction is involved in the business aspect of art; one must learn and know how to market his or her work.

Watch the video below to learn more about Meders, his take on the importance of art and more:

[stextbox id="grey"]To learn more about Meders, the Berlin Gallery or Heard Museum, please visit[/stextbox]

If You Go

Heard Museum
2301 N. Central Ave.
Phoenix, AZ 85004
(602) 252-8344

MLB All-Star Parade, Phoenix, Ariz.

Snapshot: MLB All-Star Parade 2011

On the fine, summer afternoon of July 12 in Phoenix, I took a trip on the Valley Metro Light Rail into the city to see the All-Star Game Parade.

After taking in the sights for a bit, I picked out a nice spot along the side gate and settled in to watch all sorts of different people and mascots make their way down the red carpet — including Luis Gonzalez as the grand marshal for the Parade of All-Stars.

Despite the heat, I managed to have a bit of fun watching attendees grab for toy baseballs and necklaces that the mascots threw into the crowd.

Spirits soared as fans enjoyed the parade and waited for the game to begin later in the day, hoping that just maybe a lucky home run ball will soar into their glove.

Here are some photos from the MLB All-Star Parade, prior to the All-Star Game:

[slickr-flickr tag="AllStarParade" items="20" type="sets" id="62045641@N08"]

Valley Metro Light Rail, Phoenix, Ariz.

Valley Metro Light Rail Art

After years of having only a bus system, Arizona finally took a step to better public transportation in 2008, when the Metro Light Rail was completed.

Though the light rail has a strict, one-road route, which tends to limit its effectiveness, it also runs on a more strict schedule. The light rail is almost never late and arrives more frequently than the usual buses.

The platform stops for the light rail give the average bus stop a run for its money. Each light rail station features a different piece of artwork from a different artist.

I often carry a camera wherever I go, and I spend a good chunk of time on the light rail everyday. These are a few pictures that I have taken over the past year or so while on or around the light rail.

[slickr-flickr tag="ValleyMetro" items="18" type="sets" id="62045641@N08"]

Photo: Webby Awards

15th Annual Webby Awards Honoring Excellence On The Internet

The Webby Awards honor websites, interactive advertising, online film and video, and mobile apps — and this year, the winners were announced early May and the Webby Special Achievement Awards were held on June 13.

Presented by the International Academy of Digital Arts and Sciences, the Webby Awards was established in 1996. Academy members range from Matt Groening, the creator of “The Simpsons”, to Internet inventor, Vint Cerf.

Two winners are chosen in each category by the Academy. There is also a “People’s Voice Awards” that gets hundreds of thousands of votes from all over the world.

This year’s Special Achievement winners were limited to a five word acceptance speech; three of the winners included:

LCD Soundsystem, a Webby Artist of the Year, for taking full advantage of the internet by announcing their final show online and then streaming the show in it’s entirety on the website

Funny or Die, as Webby Film and Person of the Year, with videos that include comedians such as Will Ferrel, that are voted on as “Funny” or “Die”.

Groupon, as Breakout of the Year, for negotiating large discounts with big businesses and sending deals out to thousands of subscribers for free.

For a full list, visit the Webby Awards’ website.

Past winners include:, iTunes, BBC News and Google.

View this year’s Webby Awards on its YouTube channel.

Photo: runnr_az, flickr

Skydiving Arizona

Near the end of my first year at Arizona State University, myself and two other friends decided to take a leap into something we’ve never done before.

The chance to jump out of an airplane from 13,000 feet in the airPhoto: Ryan Harvey, Flickr was presented to us, and we weren’t going to turn it down. Getting the three of us on board with the plan was an easy task; we had all been craving a new thrill, and skydiving was high on our list.

In the early morning we gathered together into one car and made our way to Eloy for a visit to Skydive Arizona, a company that provided everything we would need to complete our skydiving adventure.

After about an hour-long drive from Tempe, we arrived at our destination where we wandered the site a bit and watched other skydivers coming in for their landing. Soon we learned the basics of skydiving safety and how our jump would work. Next we put on our harnesses and headed to the plane that would take us up into the sky.

A little car that looked like an elongated golf cart with no roof took us to the plane just as our nerves came into full swing. We hopped off the cart and climbed into the plane that had benches lining the Skydiving, Eloy, Photo: Ryan Harvey, Flickrwalls instead of the rowed commercial airline seating that I was used to. This was definitely the smallest plane I had ever been on.

After a fairly quick take off, we were headed up to our destination of 13,000 feet. Hip hop music played over the speakers as we nervously joked around and took pictures with each other.

Soon it was time to jump out of this plane that I had just started to get used to. I watched the first two people, who were experienced jumpers, flip out of the plane and quickly fall away into the sky. As I inched forward and approached the door, I got my first real glimpse of the wide open sky and a small world down below. In one swift motion the entire world was flipping above and below me, like nothing I had ever experienced before. It was amazing to see and feel such a huge mass of land being thrown around me like it was nothing.Skydivers, Eloy, Arizona, Photo: runnr_az, flickr

After free falling for a short time, I pulled the cord that released the parachute, and while pulling on the handles to steer the parachute into some drastic and very amusing turns, I gently floated back to ground level. I landed smoothly into the grass, quickly followed by my other two friends.

The rest of our day and night was spent in a euphoric state, reveling in what we had just experienced, and eager to do it again.

View from Papago Peak, Tempe, Arizona

Showing Another Side Of Tempe Nightlife

Tempe can be a pretty beautiful place if you know where to go — especially at night.

Instead of going to a number of different bars or clubs in Tempe, it is worth it to take a walk and see how the light in darkness changes the normal, dry look we are all so accustomed to.

The sunsets are particularly beautiful on many different occasions. I feel that you can’t fully judge Tempe until you post up in a comfortable spot when the clouds are just right and see a truly amazing display of color.

[slickr-flickr tag="TempeNight" items="20" type="sets" id="62045641@N08"]

Grand Canyon Railway, Arizona

An Afternoon Riding On The Grand Canyon Railway

I officially have one item checked off my “see the seven wonders of the world” list.

Six more to go.

For anyone living in Arizona, it’s pretty common to make at least one trip to the Grand Canyon. However, not everyone is lucky enough to take an entertaining train ride from the town of Williams, right up to this awe-inspiring mass of land.

A calming ride via the Grand Canyon Railway through open plains and forested mountains left me relaxed and ready to see what the Grand Canyon had to offer. Along the way there were musical performances and trivia games to keep the passengers entertained.

Once we all made it to the Grand Canyon, we were free to roam the area for about three hours before we had to be back on the train. This gave us all plenty of time to soak in the sights and really enjoy the whole experience.

[slickr-flickr tag="GrandCanyonRailway" items="20" type="galleria" id="62045641@N08"]

2011 Coachella Music and Arts Festival

Coachella Music And Arts Festival 2011: Over 150 Bands In 3 Days

The Coachella Music and Arts Festival, which started in 1999, is known for it’s beautiful location, endless amounts of smiling faces and positive energy, and an unending supply of some of the world’s best music.

Each year, festival goers (many, who after attending the festival for their first time, vow to return to the festival every year for the rest of their life) travel from all across the world to see music ranging from long-time musicians like the Chemical Brothers or Paul McCartney of The Beatles, to many unknown bands just getting started.

This year’s larger acts included Kings of Leon, the Chemical Brothers, Arcade Fire and Kanye West — all of which were supported by 150 other bands that played over three days.

Some would even argue that the best part about Coachella is the mass amount of new and innovative music that it brings to the public’s attention. However, there are always plenty of big-name acts that draw thousands of people to the three-day festival.

Last year, attendance reached 105,000 people, with only 75,000 three-day passes sold. This year, with an increase of security to decrease gate crashers, attendance was kept under 90,000.

With some initial criticism about the line up when it was released a couple months before the festival, some wondered if Coachella 2011 could measure up to the rest. But as the weekend proceeded through three days of amazing music, it became very clear that this Coachella easily measured up (and in some ways surpassed) its previous years. Attendees left the grounds excitedly talking about their favorite acts of the night/weekend — many already making plans to come next year.

[slickr-flickr tag="Coachella 2011" items="20" type="galleria" id="62045641@N08"]