09 Apr 2012

Spring Fever!

No Comments Hiking and biking trails, Nearby Things To Do, Sight Seeing

We have some serious spring fever here in Scottsdale!  It’s pretty easy to understand why with the warm sun shining, the lazy breeze blowing and beautiful flowers blooming everywhere…

We played hooky recently and took a day off to visit the Desert Botanical Gardens – one of our favorite springtime destinations.  It was a perfect day!

09 Dec 2010

McCormick Stillman Railroad park holiday lights picking up steam

Comments Off Local Upcoming Events, Nearby Things To Do

The McCormick Stillman Railroad is literally 500 yards or so from our Sunny Scottsdale Condo Vacation Rental. Families love riding the train as it meanders through the beautiful display.

This just in…

Peter Kaczmarowski considers the holiday-lights display at McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park his annual labor of love.

Kaczmarowski has fond memories of the tradition that blossomed from a small lights display into a premier annual event at the Scottsdale park, with train rides and costumed characters.

When the event was still in its infancy, Kaczmarowski had just joined the city as a railroad engineer.

“My daughter, who turned 21 this year, said she didn’t remember a year that (I) didn’t do it,” said Kaczmarowski, a volunteer.

Holiday Lights at McCormick-Stillman Railroad Park kicks off Friday with a tree-lighting ceremony and related festivities. The annual affair runs nightly through Jan. 1, with the exception of Dec. 24, 25 and 31.

The event already was running in 1986 when Kaczmarowski came on board.”It’s a great event, and the opening night is crowded,” Kaczmarowski said. “We run two trains every night. We bring in entertainment and characters to give people something to watch.”

Fond memories

In its early days, the infrastructure could not always handle the electrical demands of the display, Kaczmarowski said. Blackouts occurred, and “one year, it was actually snowing,” he said.

In the early ’90s, Kaczmarowski decided to string lights over the park’s 1907 Baldwin steam engine.

“That’s the first thing people see when they get out of their cars,” Kaczmarowski said. “I thought, ‘Let’s just cover this thing completely with lights.’ ”

Park recreation supervisor Bob McNair said there are tens of thousands of holiday lights on display, along with kid-friendly exhibits and characters. Santa will be on hand through Dec. 23.

The cost to stage the event is about $90,000, covered by approximately $100,000 in revenue, he said. The city-sponsored event also is supported by the Scottsdale Charros and Scottsdale Railroad and Mechanical Society.

This year’s event boasts a new Snoopy display and a 25-foot-tall inflatable sun with sunglasses. Organizers added costumed volunteers several years ago, he said.

Ann Achtziger, a volunteer and assistant principal of Mohave Middle School, said students and volunteers from the Scottsdale Unified School District dress up as Santa’s helpers and popular children’s characters. Families can take free photos with the characters, she said.

The cost for a train ride is $2 and $1 for a carousel ride.

Read more: http://www.azcentral.com/community/scottsdale/articles/2010/12/08/20101208scottsdale-mccormick-railroad-park-holiday-lights.html#ixzz17a0X5INe

12 Oct 2010

Scottsdale’s Soleri Bridge project is Underway

Comments Off Nearby Things To Do, Sight Seeing, Uncategorized

Scottsdale has done very well by continuing to invest in public art. This commitment continues to make Scottsdale a beautiful and interesting place for visitors and residents. The public arts project is clearly one of many factors making Scottsdale a top vacation destination. In 1985, the Arizona city of Scottsdale adopted a one percent for art ordinance and established the Scottsdale Public Art Program with the goal to enhance the quality of life afforded area residents and visitors. Scottsdale’s program and projects have won local, regional and national awards. Public art has taken many forms ranging from the walls of the Pima Freeway to James Turrell’s Skyspace at the Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. I am excited about the latest addition, and I know visitors to our Sunny Scottsdale Condo Vacation Rental will enjoy the new Soleri addition.

Read more about the Soleri Bridge Project at azcentral.com

For Even More info:

Read More about Paolo Soleri on Wikipedia