Annual tour of Historic Florence returns for another year

[Source: Gold Canyon Today]

Florence will celebrate its 26th Annual Tour of Historic Florence on Saturday, February 12, 2011 from 9:00 am to 4:00 pm.Image

Eleven historic homes, commercial buildings, and public buildings dating from 1868 to 1930 will be featured on the tour. Florence is noted for its collection of Territorial period architecture with over 120 buildings listed on the National Register of Historic Places.

The heart of the downtown commercial district retains much of its original western character with old adobe homes, graceful Victorians, and early 20th century commercial structures. The tour not only focuses on the town’s architecturally significant buildings, it also gives visitors a glimpse of Florence’s colorful past. The stories that shape Florence’s history run the gamut from old west gun fights to politicians and movie stars.

In addition to the tour, visitors and residents alike will not want to miss the grand re-opening celebration of McFarland State Historic Park at 10:00 a.m.  Special guests Renee Bahl, Executive Director of Arizona State Parks; Marshall Trimble, Arizona’s Official State Historian; Jim Garrison, State Historic Preservation Officer; and Florence Mayor Vickie Kilvinger will all speak during the event. The park recently opened after being closed for more than two years thanks to a partnership among Arizona State Parks, the Town of Florence, and Florence Main Street Program. The park now houses the Florence Visitor Center in addition to the museum.

Among the other activities happening that day, the Pinal County Historical Society Museum will present
“The Southwest Table” at 2 p.m. where they will have a demonstration of cooking with cactus and other desert plants by Jean Groen, author of “Foods of the Superstitions” and “Plants of the Sonoran Desert and Their Many Uses.” The museum will have a special display consisting of American tableware of Southwest design from the 1940’s and 1950’s.

After the tour, stop by the Florence Aeromodeler Park to see the Fun Fly & Swap Meet just two miles south of Florence on Highway 79. The Blue Adobe Meeting Center will feature their weekly History Hub Matinee Shows at 12 p.m. and 2 p.m. for a separate fee not included in tour admission.

The self-guided Tour of Historic Florence begins in downtown Florence at 291 N. Main Street, at the corner of Main Street and 8th Street. Admission for adults is $10 in advance or $12 on the day of the tour, children under 18 are free. Trolleys will provide transportation to tour sites at no additional cost. Proceeds from the tour support downtown revitalization activities of the Florence Main Street Program.

Anthony Tung to be Keynote Speaker at AZ Historic Preservation Conference 2011

[Source:  PRLog (Press Release)]

© Janet Vicario

Renowned author and international historian Anthony Tung will be a featured speaker during “Valuing Historic Perspectives,” the Ninth Annual Historic Preservation Conference, to be held June 22-24, 2011 at the University Park Marriott Hotel near the campus of the University of Arizona in Tucson.

Author and urbanist Anthony M. Tung has been a New York City Landmarks Preservation Commissioner, an instructor on architectural history at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, and a visiting professor on international urban preservation at MIT. He has lectured in Singapore, Madrid, Amsterdam, Istanbul,San Juan, Edinburgh, Athens, Mexico City, Vienna, Kyoto, and across North America—consulting on heritage conservation policy with officials in Toronto, Halifax, New York, and New Orleans.

His first book, entitled Preserving the World’s Great Cities:  The Destruction and Renewal of the Historic Metropolis (hardcover: Clarkson Potter, 2001; softcover: Three Rivers Press, 2001) is a detailed socio-cultural portrait of preservation efforts in eighteen cities across the globe—described by Publisher’s Weekly as an “important contribution not only to the literature of urban studies and city planning but to architectural history and sociology,” by the Atlanta Journal Constitution as “a remarkable chronicle of human spirit and architectural heritage,” by Architectural Record On-Line as “an epic, or rather, 18 little epics packed into one important book,” and by The Washington Post, as “a landmark of creative urbanism . . . Tung’s breath of vision and rapid-fire insights recall Lewis Mumford at his best.” (more here)

“Valuing Historic Perspectives” held jointly by Arizona State Parks, the State Historic Preservation Office, Main Street / Department of Commerce, non-profit Arizona Preservation Foundation, the Arizona Historical Society, and the Arizona Archaeological Council will bring together more than 300 people and organizations interested in current topics and program management best practices in preservation, drawn primarily from architectural, archaeological, historical research, consulting, real estate development, construction, general contracting, Tribal, legal, and state and local government organizations from across the Southwest.

Sessions at the 2011 Conference will include:  Folk Baroque: the Art & Architecture of San Xavier del Bac – National Historic Landmark, built 1783-1797; Preserving the History of Arizona and the West in the Levi Strauss & Co. Archives; Introduction to Prehistoric Analyses in Arizona; Doing the Business of Archaeology in Arizona: Integrating AZSITE, the State Historic Preservation Act and the Arizona Antiquities Act into Arizona Archaeology; and The Basics of Historical Period Artifact Identification.

“Valuing Historic Perspectives” will be based out of the University Park Marriott Hotel, just outside the campus of the University of Arizona.  Registration information is available online at www.azpreservation.com. Conference registration begins at $225 per person; member and early registration and professional affiliation discounts are available.  Full-time undergraduate and graduate student rates are available.

Conference underwriters include: Arizona Department of Commerce; the National Park Service; the National Trust for Historic Preservation; Arizona State Parks; the City of Tucson; Desert Archaeology, Inc.; Statistical Research, Inc.; Archaeological Consulting Services; the Tempe Historic Preservation Foundation; the Arizona Historical Society; Local First Arizona; HistoricStreetscapes; Baker Custom Photo; the Arizona Archaeological Council; and the Arizona State Museum.  More information about Arizona Preservation Foundation, its goals and mission, is available at www.azpreservation.org.

Fort Verde Prepares Fence For Tom Sawyer Day

[Source: Mark Lineberger, JournalAZ.com]

It’s time to roll up the sleeves and make Aunt Polly proud, because Fort Verde State Historic Park is looking for volunteers for its annual Tom Sawyer Day.

The event is inspired by the story of Tom Sawyer tricking people into doing his fence painting job in Mark Twain’s classic novel.

The fort, however, isn’t trying to trick anybody. Organizers are just looking for people to come out for a day of family fun.

If the white picket fence happens to get a nice new coat of paint in the process, then all the better.

The event came into existence a few years ago when staff at the fort was trying to think of something that would really bring people out, said Sheila Stubler, fort manager.

“We thought this would be a really great community volunteer project,” Stubler said.

She was right, and Tom Sawyer Day has become quite popular over the years.

Last year’s event brought out more than 80 people, Stubler said.

It’s a great opportunity for groups like the Boy Scouts, the Girl Scouts, the Builders Club and anyone else who wants to help give a little something back to their community, Stubler said.

“It’s great,” Stubler said. “They’ve done such a good job that we had to look for parts of the fence that people could actually paint. Some people have asked me if we could do something like this twice a year or more, but there’s only so much fence to go around.”

This year’s Tom Sawyer Day is set to run from 8 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 25.

If people would like to participate, Stubler only asks that they call the fort ahead of time so staff can get an idea of how many supplies they’ll need.

The fort will provide scrapers, buckets and paint. They’ll also have paintbrushes, but Stubler said people should bring an extra if they have one.

The fort will also have water and snacks on hand. It’s not all manual labor, Stubler said. There will be historical reenactors wearing period clothes from the 19th century, and if it gets hot, “Tom Sawyer” the movie will be playing inside the air-conditioned fort, a luxury not enjoyed by its original inhabitants.

The fort has been heavily dependent on volunteers since the state gutted the budget of Arizona State Parks. Through a community effort, a small army of volunteers stepped up to help keep the fort running, and Stubler said they deserve a lot of credit.

“An assistant director with state parks was here the other day,” Stubler said. “He said he hadn’t seen the fort look this clean in 30 years.”

For more information about Tom Sawyer Day, call the fort at 567-3275 or contact Nicole Armstrong-Best with Arizona State Parks at (602) 542-7152. Anyone age 13 or younger will need to be with a parent or legal guardian.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Verde River Days at Dead Horse Ranch State Park—Sept 25 and 26

[Source: Ron Dungan, The Arizona Republic]

Photo Credit: Arizona State Parks

The desert changes when you add water.

Plants flourish, and wildlife is drawn to the food and shade that they provide.

The Verde River is one of the few perennial rivers in Arizona, making it a vital resource for wildlife. You can learn about this important ecosystem during Verde River Days, Sept. 25 and 26 at Dead Horse Ranch State Park near Cottonwood.

“Verde River Days is set up to appreciate and talk about the environment because the Verde River is such a unique environment in Arizona,” acting park manager Max Castillo said. “The Verde River runs year-round.”

The Sierra Club, Nature Conservancy, Salt River Project and other organizations will have exhibits at the event. More than 40 exhibits are planned. Activities include sand-castle building, pottery making, canoe rides and hikes. On Sept. 25, the park-admission fee of $7 per vehicle will be waived.

Visitors will be allowed to fish without a license during the event.

“We’ll have some catfish stocked in our lagoons, and there will be some fishing poles and bait available,” Castillo said.

There also will be food, Civil War re-enactments and live entertainment. The Arizona Vintage Tag a Longs, a club whose members are devoted to antique travel trailers, will camp in the park that weekend.

The Verde River Citizens Alliance will take people on canoe and kayak rides down the Verde River at 8 and 10 a.m. Sept. 26. The rides last about an hour and a half, and registration is required. Contact Marsha Foust at 928-634-8738.

Details: 928-634-5283, azstateparks.com.

Enhanced by Zemanta