Tag Archives: arizona sonora desert museum

Tucson Adventures - EAZ Fall-Winter 2012

Top 5: Tucson Adventures (Fall-Winter 2012)

The Top 5 Tucson Adventures — as voted on by Experience AZ readers:

Old Tucson Studios

201 S. Kinney Rd.,
Tucson, AZ 85735
(520) 883-0100
oldtucson.com
Old Tucson Studios is an Old West theme park and a working movie location where you’ll find Western movie history, historical tours, shopping, seasonal events and more.


Biosphere 2

32540 S. Biosphere Rd.,
Oracle, AZ 85623
(502) 838-6200
b2science.org
The $150-million facility opened in 1991 as a massive closed system that would last for 100 years to test nature, technology and human endurance. Opened to the public in 2002, visitors to Biosphere 2 can explore inside the 3.15-acre structure on a fully-guided tour.


University of Arizona

1200 E. University Blvd.,
Tucson, AZ 85721
(520) 621-2211
arizona.edu/visit-ua
With its main campus covering 380 acres in Central Tucson, this university offers plenty of attractions and activities, including the Arizona State Museum, the University of Arizona Museum of Art, the Campus Arboretum and more.


Mission San Xavier Del Bac

1950 W. San Xavier Rd.,
Tucson, AZ 85746
(520) 294-2624
sanxaviermission.org
Mission San Xavier del Bac is referred to as the “White Dove of the Desert.” This active Franciscan mission is located on the Tohono O’Odham Indian Reservation.


Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

2021 N. Kinney Rd.,
Tucson, AZ 85743
(520) 883-2702
desertmuseum.org
A world-renowned zoo, with more than 300 animal species and 1,200 kinds of plants, a natural history museum and a botanical garden — all in one place.

Experience AZ Fall-Winter 2012

 

Seahorse (Alex Kerstitch) (

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum Announces Its New Warden Aquarium

Any interpretation of the Sonoran Desert region would be incomplete without recognizing the importance of the fresh water rivers that flow through it and the Sea of Cortez or Gulf of California. The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum will unveil its dramatic, new permanent aquarium dedicated to revealing the remarkable story of this miraculous region in December 2012.

“Without this sea and the summer monsoon that brings moisture from it, the lush Sonoran Desert known today would be an entirely different place,” state Craig Ivanyi, Executive Director of the Museum. “This body of water truly represents a full half of the Sonoran Desert Region – literally 100,000 square miles of desert-ocean and an astounding 900 islands!”

This exhibition, “Rivers to the Sea”, in the new Warden Aquarium, will highlight the roles of the region’s rivers, including the mighty Colorado, and the Gulf of California. Two galleries are planned: one highlighting the region’s freshwater rivers and aquatic life and the other featuring the Sea of Cortez and representative sea life. Primary funding for the new exhibition was generously provided by the Bert W. Martin Foundation.

The galleries will encompass over 1,100 square feet and include 14 tanks displaying a variety of fresh- and salt-water animal species. Some of the Museum’s numerous aquatic conservation projects impacting many aquatic species will be highlighted in the galleries.
The exhibition area will also include a touch tank with marine invertebrates, like sea stars and hermit crabs, for a hands-on encounter for visitors. A visit to the new Warden Aquarium will be included with the purchase of a general admission ticket.

The Sea of Cortez is extremely diverse containing one of the world’s smallest and most endangered marine mammals, the vaquita, a rare type of porpoise, migratory whales that no longer migrate, over 800 types of fishes, five species of sea turtles, and the rarely encountered American crocodile. In addition to the varied species of wildlife, the Sea of Cortez provides much of the moisture for the region’s summer rains which have tremendously influenced vegetation on the terrestrial part of the Sonoran Desert Region.

The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is one of the nation’s leading outdoor, living museums, featuring more than 230 animals and 1,200 varieties of desert plants. Its mission is to inspire people to live in harmony with the natural world by fostering love, appreciation, and understanding of the bi-national Sonoran Desert region. The museum is located at 2021 N. Kinney Road, in Tucson Mountain Park adjacent to Saguaro National Park (West). It is open daily year round with operating hours varying by season. Call (520) 883-2702 or visit www.desertmuseum.org for more information.

Top 5 Southern AZ Must-See Spots (Spring-Summer 2012)

Top 5: Southern AZ Must-See Spots (Spring-Summer 2012)

The Top 5 Southern AZ Must-See Spots — as voted on by Experience AZ readers:

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

2021 N. Kinney Rd., Tucson, AZ 85743
520-883-2702
desertmuseum.org
A world-renowned zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden — all in one place. Within the museum grounds, you will see more than 300 animal species and 1,200 kinds of plants.


Kartchner Caverns State Park

2980 S. Hwy. 90, Benson, AZ 85602
520-586-CAVE (2283)
azstateparks.com/Parks/KACA
Discovered in 1974, these caverns recently opened to the public and feature stunning stalactite and stalagmite formations. Guided cave tours, a discovery center, interactive displays, gift shops, 62 camping sites, hiking and walking trails.


Mission San Xavier Del Bac

1950 W. San Xavier Rd., Tucson, AZ 85746
520-294-2624
sanxaviermission.org
Mission San Xavier del Bac is referred to as the “White Dove of the Desert.” This active Franciscan mission is located on the Tohono O’Odham Indian Reservation.


Queen Mine Tour

Hwy 80, Historic Old Bisbee exit, Bisbee, AZ 85603
866-432-2071
queenminetour.com
Don a mining lantern, hat and slicker and ride the mine train deep into the mine and experience the life of the miners as they tell you how they toiled in the subterranean tunnels. Fun and educational for the whole family. Tours last about one hour and are offered five times a day, seven days a week.


Titan Missile Museum

1580 W. Duval Mine Rd., Sahuarita, AZ 85629
520-625-7736
titanmissilemuseum.org
Once one of America’s most top secret places, this National Historic Landmark site and one-of-a-kind museum gives visitors a rare look at the technology used by the United States to deter nuclear war. Tour the underground missile site. See the 3-ton blast doors, the 8-foot thick silo walls, and an actual Titan II missile in the launch duct. Visit the launch control center, experience a simulated launch and more.

Experience AZ Spring-Summer 2012

Top 5 Southern Arizona Day Trips (Spring-Summer 2012)

Top 5: Southern Arizona Day Trips (Spring-Summer 2012)

The Top 5 Southern Arizona Day Trips — as voted on by Experience AZ readers:

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

2021 N. Kinney Rd.,
Tucson, AZ 85743
520-883-2702
desertmuseum.org
The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a world-renowned zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden, all in one place. Exhibits re-create the natural landscape of the Sonoran Desert Region so realistically you find yourself eye-to-eye with mountain lions, prairie dogs, Gila monsters, and more.


Sonoita Vineyards

290 Elgin-Canelo Rd.,
Elgin, AZ 85611
520-455-5893
sonoitavineyards.com
The oldest commercial vineyard and winery in Arizona, Sonoita Vineyards opened in 1983 and includes more than 25 acres of vines. The vineyard created a Cabernet Sauvignon that was served at a Presidential Inauguration Gala.


Tombstone

P.O. Box 813
Tombstone, AZ 85638
520-457-3884
cityoftombstone.com
The name Tombstone creates images of gunfights and dusty streets, whiskey and Faro games, Wyatt Earp, Doc Holliday and a plethora of old Western movie scenes. Tombstone has been called “The Town Too Tough to Die.”


Bisbee

1326 W. Highway 92, Suite #9,
Bisbee, AZ 85603
520-432-5421
bisbeearizona.com
Bisbee was founded in 1880 and has since evolved into an artist colony and retirement community emphasizing monthly events and tourism. Travelers from all over the world come to Bisbee to savor its unique charm … a blend of creativity, friendliness, style, romance and adventure wrapped in the splendor of the Old West.


Tubac

P.O. Box 1866,
Tubac, AZ 85646
520-398-2704
tubacaz.com
Located in the Santa Cruz River Valley, Tubac has a 250-year-old Spanish history. Tubac is the perfect shoppers’ paradise with more than 80 galleries and shops that feature hand-crafted items, sculpture,
paintings, clothing and some of Southern Arizona’s best import shops. Tubac is also the gateway to birding, hiking,  and mountain biking.

Experience AZ Spring-Summer 2012

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, Photo: Flickr, DrStarbuck

Things To Do In Arizona: Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum

Take a tour at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, and you’ll quickly understand why this museum attracts millions of visitors to its grounds. With an assortment of animals in their natural settings and instructional, educational programs, the Arizona-Sonora Desert is not only a must-see, but a must-experience.

The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum’s commitment to research and protection of plants, animals and the land of the Sonoran Desert region has helped the museum attain its goal to connect people and nature. For instance, its natural history museum of the Sonoran Desert comes complete 1,200 kinds of plants within its botanical garden and exhibits that recreate the desert as well as 300 animal species. With almost two miles of paths to trek on the 21 acres of desert landscape, this breathtaking experience will have visitors questioning their eyes as they struggle to believe how such beauty can exist in one museum.

Also found at the Arizona-Sonoran Desert Museum is the Center for Sonoran Desert Studies, a hub for research, education and conservation of the Sonoran Desert. The Center for Sonoran Desert Studies provides interdisciplinary studies with a focus on whole-organism and community biology, projects that promote habitat conservation, as well as collaboration with the people of Mexico in its research and education.

The museum also welcomes field trips and offers classes and outreach programs to visit the museum year-round. Summer, Winter and Earth camps are available as well as a Coati Kids’ Club for ages 6-12. Scouts and preschool programs are also welcome to participate and plan events at this unique museum that makes connecting with nature so easy.



For more information about the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, visit desertmuseum.org.

Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
2021 N. Kinney Rd.
Tucson, AZ 85743
(520) 883-2702
desertmuseum.org

Laser light show at The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain, Tucson

July 4 Laser Light Show At The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain

Who needs a fireworks display when you can have a laser light show?

The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain — a luxury resort in Tucson, Ariz. — is replacing its July 4th fireworks display with just that — a patriotic-themed laser light show, featuring custom light choreography. Inspired by Dove Mountain’s canyon setting, the light spectacular will take place the evening of July 3 and will last approximately 30 minutes.The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain, Independence Day Weekend 2011

The Ritz-Carlton will begin its weekend-long festivities on Friday, July 1 with many activities and events for the entire family. Friday’s events include lawn games for children, the CORE Beer Experience, dive-in movies, a night golf putting challenge, Ranger Rick’s evening Bug Experience, and plenty of dining options.

Saturday, July 2, expect plenty of outdoor games, including Aventura lawn games, Bocce Ball tournament, a night sky telescope experience, as well as brunch, a candy counting contest, Arizona Sonora Desert Museum Wildlife activity, and more.

Sunday is the big day with the laser light show as well as the Fourth of July barbecue buffet with live entertainment, more lawn games and dive-in movies.

The resort’s restaurants and barbecue buffet is open to the public, as is the new laser light show.

For more information, about The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain and its Independence Day weekend itinerary, visit www.ritzcarlton.com.

 

[stextbox id="grey"]

If You Go

The Ritz-Carlton, Dove Mountain
15000 N. Secret Springs Dr.
Marana, AZ 85658
520-572-3000
www.ritzcarlton.com

[/stextbox]

Mission San Xavier del Bac is also known as the "White Dove of the Desert."

Southern Arizona Day Trips

Want to get away, but don’t have the time to plan a vacation? Then a short, fun day trip is the perfect option. Check out this list of southern Arizona attractions to plan a great day trip.

  • Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum
    2021 N. Kinney Rd., Tucson
    520-883-1380
    The Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum is a world-renowned zoo, natural history museum and botanical garden, all in one place.

  • Bisbee
    1 Main St., Bisbee
    520-432-5421
    In the 1880s, this was once an important mining center. Today, it flourishes as a tourist town.

  • Chiricahua National Monument
    13063 E. Bonita Canyon Rd., Willcox
    520-824-3560 ext. 302
    The monument is a mecca for hikers and birders. Chiricahua plants and animals represent one of the premier areas for biological diversity in the Northern Hemisphere.

  • Colossal Cave Mountain Park
    16721 E. Old Spanish Tr., Vail
    520-647-7275
    Colossal Cave, which is on the National Register of Historic Places, had been used for centuries by prehistoric peoples when it was discovered in 1879.

  • Fort Bowie National Historic Site
    3203 S. Old Fort Bowie Rd., Bowie
    520-847-25004
    The site of the Bascom Affair, a wagon train massacre, and the battle of Apache Pass, where a large force of Chiricahua Apaches under Mangus Colorados and Cochise fought the California Volunteers. It stands as a lasting monument to the bravery and endurance of U.S. soldiers in paving the way for westward settlement and the taming of the Western frontier.

  • Ironwood Forest National Monument
    BLM Tucson Field Office: 12661 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson
    520-258-7200
    The 129,000-acre monument contains significant cultural and historical sites covering a 5,000-year period. Possessing one of the richest stands of Ironwood trees in the Sonoran Desert, the area encompasses several desert mountain ranges including the Silver Bell, Waterman and Sawtooth, with desert valleys in between. Elevation ranges from 1,800 to 4,261 feet.

  • Kartchner Caverns State Park
    2980 S. Hwy. 90, Benson
    520-586-CAVE (2283)
    Discovered in 1974, these caverns just recently opened to the public and feature stunning stalactite and stalagmite formations.

  • Kitt Peak National Observatory
    Off of SR 86 on the Tohono O’odham Nation, Tucson
    520-318-8726
    Kitt Peak is the world’s largest working astronomical observatory. Open daily.

  • Las Cienegas National Conservation Area
    BLM Tucson Field Office: 12661 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson
    520-258-7200
    Designated by Congress in 2000, this 42,000-acre area consists of vast desert grassland and rolling, oak-studded hills with a diverse plant and animal life, including several threatened or endangered species. Las Cienegas contains cultural resources within its borders, such as Empire Ranch House, listed on the National Register of Historic Places, mines and mining towns, and historic travel routes. Visitor activities include birdwatching, camping, hiking, horseback riding, hunting, mountain biking and scenic drives.

  • Mission San Xavier Del Bac
    1950 W. San Xavier Rd., Tucson
    520-294-2624
    Framed in the warm browns of the surrounding hills and the violet shadows of distant mountains, it rises, brilliantly white from the desert floor of dusty green mesquite and sage.

  • Old Tucson Studios
    201 S. Kinney Rd., Tucson
    520-883-0100
    Arizona’s Hollywood in the Desert since 1939. This world-famous working film location offers fun for the whole family — guided historical set tours, live stunt shows, gunfights, and saloon musicals, plus rides for the kids! While you’re here, enjoy a scenic trail ride in the unique and beautiful Arizona Sonora Desert.

  • Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument
    10 Organ Pipe Dr., Ajo
    520-387-6849 ext. 0
    This scenic 516-square-mile preserve is filled with Organ Pipe Cactus, rare in the United States, scattered among mountains and plains.

  • Picacho Peak State Park
    Picacho
    520-466-3183
    Hiking, camping and picnicking 60 miles southeast of Phoenix, just off I-10.

  • Reid Park Zoo
    1100 S. Randolph Way, Tucson
    520-791-4022
    Come visit Tucson’s Reid Park Zoo and have a wild time. Meet more than 400 animals — rhinos, elephants, anteaters, polar bears, lions and many more. Venture into the African, Asian and South American regions. Explore the Flight Connection — the full-flight, walkthrough aviary.

  • Saguaro National Park
    2700 N. Kinney Rd., Tucson
    520-733-5158
    This national park protects more than 3,500 acres of native plants and animals.

  • San Pedro Riparian National Conservation Area
    BLM Tucson Field Office: 12661 E. Broadway Blvd., Tucson
    520-258-7200
    This 57,000-acre area contains 40 miles of the San Pedro River, which is home to more than 100 species of birds and more than 400 species of migrating and wintering bird species.

  • Tombstone
    Tombstone
    520-457-3929
    Truly a historical American landmark, Tombstone is America’s best example of 1880 Western heritage, with original 1880s buildings, artifacts featured in numerous museums, gunfight re-enactments and Wild West legends.

  • Tucson
    100 S. Church Ave., Tucson
    800-638-8350
    Surrounded by rugged mountain ranges, the Old Pueblo is an international travel destination alive with character, history, art, cultural diversity, outdoor adventure and charm.

  • Yuma
    201 N. Fourth Ave., Yuma
    800-293-0071
    A visit to this growing metropolis offers something for everyone, from outdoor adventures to historic sites and museums. Yuma is also a great base for easy day trips “South of the Border,” and boasts varied dining, shopping and multiple casinos.
Mexican gray wolf photographed by Joel Sartore

Valley Forward Hosts 41st Annual Luncheon Featuring National Geographic Photographer Joel Sartore

Valley Forward hosted its 41st Annual Luncheon Dec. 3, and the event was wild — literally. Guests were greeted by a menagerie of interesting wildlife at this year’s event thanks to the Desert Botanical Garden, Liberty Wildlife, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, The Phoenix Zoo and the Wildlife World Zoo & Aquarium. Several animals were showcased at the environmental education exhibits including a bald eagle, American alligator, greyhound owl, African-crested porcupine and more. These exhibits transformed all the attendees back to their school-age, zoo-visiting days, and truly served as a reminder for the topic that was discussed at the luncheon — the importance of fostering our environment.

The keynote speaker  was Joel Sartore, noted wildlife photographer at National Geographic Magazine, author and passionate environmentalist. Sartore presented a heartfelt speech about the importance of helping preserve our environment and making sure that despite the fervent pace of technology innovations, future generations value and experience the great outdoors.

Sartore has witnessed much of the devastation firsthand during his 20 plus years at National Geographic. He has photographed, among others, environmental tragedies such as the recent Gulf Coast oil spill, endangered species and more. His dedication to the cause is also demonstrated in his latest book, Rare: Portraits of America’s Endangered Species, featuring endangered species from all over the world including several from Arizona. Sartore hopes that by photographing wildlife that many people don’t even realize exist, it will draw attention to their cause and maybe help save them. His experience provided the audience with an amazing look into this wild world and what we — everyday, average people — can do to help make a difference.

Congratulations to Valley Forward for once again putting together such an inspiring event. The message of sustainability and environmental stewardship is one that continues to gain momentum. Let’s hope it does so for many years to come.

Read more about Joel Sartore in the November/December issue of AZ Business Magazine here.

www.valleyforward.org
www.joelsartore.com

Joel Sartore Presenting

Showcased at the environmental education exhibit, a bald eagle.American alligator & African-crested porcupine Joel Sartore - Rare: Portraits of America's Endangered Species