750 West Starr Pass Boulevard
Tucson, AZ 85713
Phone: (520) 624-4455
Fax: (520) 624-3172
The locals commonly refer to this high elevation peak, located just west of downtown, as "A" Mountain because since 1915, University of Arizona students have whitewashed the letter "A" on its eastern slope. Its history, however, goes much further back: it was at the foot of this mountain that the earliest traces of human settlements in the Tucson area were found. The top of the mountain offers one of the best panoramic views of the Tucson basin, as well as a few BBQ grills.
In 1775, the Spanish army staked its claim to this land (now the state of Arizona) by building the fortress, or presidio, which would soon become the center of Tucson. Both the Spanish and the fortress are long gone now, and all that's left of the presidio is a plaque reminding visitors of the events hundreds of years ago. It's a park now, used for fiestas and other celebrations, surrounded by tall 1970s style office buildings. There's not much history left here aside from the Pima County Courthouse, but it's still a nice place to rest and enjoy a picnic lunch in the shade.
Tucson Puppet Works has quickly become one of the centers of activity in the Downtown Arts District. It is run by a collective of puppeteers who provide entertainment for adults and kids alike in regular puppet shows. Come to see the Puppet Church Sundays and experience a different kind of Sunday service, or join the All Souls Parade to watch the masks and costumes dancing around downtown. Puppeteering workshops are available. The art space at the gallery is reserved for fine art, usually featuring groups of local artists.
If you want to introduce your kids to some excellent art, and enjoy the experience yourself as well, Artfare The Muse is just the place for you to visit. Formerly named International Arts Center, Muse is a great place for both adults and kids to enjoy a day out, practicing and checking out various forms of art. Various dance classes, shows, cultural events and other exhibitions are held at Artfare The Muse. All in all a great place for a family day out.
Dog racing is very popular with Tucson folk, and watching greyhounds race can be a rewarding experience, both financially and culturally. Located in Hispanic South Tucson, Greyhound Park lets the dogs out Tuesday to Sunday evenings. Parimutuel betting is offered on site. Follow up a big win by enjoying a buffet at the clubhouse. In addition to the nighttime fun, the track hosts a "flop meet" (an open market) on the premises every Saturday and Sunday from 7a to 4p.
West Stadium also known as Arizona Stadium is the perfect embodiment of Arizona football and it has been in continuous use, with additions and expansions from its original 7,000 seats up to today, where it now seats 56,000. Its growth is a tribute to the popularity of the Wildcats, a perennial contender. Located at the University of Arizona, this spacious sports facility hosts all the exciting athletic events throughout the year.
This center is a favorite venue for Arizona's basketball fans. It is home to the Arizona Wildcats team, and has a seating capacity of 14,500 spectators. The food stalls serve hot dogs, popcorn, soft drinks, candy, nachos, but no alcoholic beverages. The entire arena is a no smoking zone and cameras are not allowed for some major events. You can book your tickets from the venue or online through the Ticketmaster website.
Located in Tucson the home of Rodeo, the Tucson Rodeo Ground is home to the Tucson Rodeo & La Fiesta de los Vaqueros. This arena is capable of seating 11 thousand spectators and entertains a number of fans and rodeo lovers alike. The grounds tend to get packed to capacity during the Rodeo Parade. The Tucson Rodeo Grounds are under the control of the Tucson Rodeo Committee.
Every year, the top performers in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association gather in Tucson to compete, and the winners are named to perform in the finals of the rodeo circuit. If you're here during the fall, take yourself and the kids to witness Desert Thunder Pro Rodeo, which includes bull riding, bareback riding, steer wrestling, team roping, barrel racing and mutton busting—it's an activity that kids will enjoy. There's also a sideline of vendors offering Western-theme artwork and accessories.
Himmel Park was voted Best Playground in Tucson by the readers of the Tucson Weekly, and with some justification. The park actually has three playgrounds. The westside section, near the pool, contains the toddlers' structure with beginner's slides and swings; then, there's more swings and the popular Giganto Slide of Death for the bigger kids, while the northeast side features a big climbing structure with several platforms and even more swings. All areas have lots of sand and picnic areas around them. Keep this place in mind if you're traveling with two-10 year olds.
Reid Park is definitely the best place in town for a family picnic. There are lots of places to cook your hot dogs, spread the blankets and open those jars of potato salad to the sound of the zoo animals nearby. Playgrounds with more and improved play equipment, party areas and public artworks are all around you. With good timing, you may even catch one of the popular DeMeester Outdoor Concerts.
Kino Sports Complex is a majestic setting for baseball and other year-round events. The centerpiece of the complex is the Kino Veterans Memorial Stadium, seating over 11,000 fans. With a view of the Santa Catalina Mountains and an intimate atmosphere, this park is one of the finest facilities around. Aside from the stadium, the complex offers a plethora of other recreational areas including two full size soccer fields, 12 senior baseball fields, two youth softball fields and ramadas throughout the complex.