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PARK UPDATE 5-20 - Picacho Peak State Park will now be OPEN YEAR-ROUND.

Experience unique adventures at Arizona State Parks! Read our complete listing below to learn about upcoming events and activities. To learn more about a park, including downloading park maps and getting step by step driving directions, follow the link to the park's web pages. Schedule & events may be subject to change without notice.

May is Butterfly Month at Red Rock State Park.
ON-GOING EVENTS

Every Weekend - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Aerial photo above Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park.NOTE: Summer Hours are in Effect at Boyce Thompson - 6am. - 3pm.

Daily Guided Walking Tours

11:00 am. Check out our Facebook page for more pictures. What bird leaves foot-long primary wing feathers in the eucalyptus grove -- how old is a 6-foot high Saguaro... and can you name a few edible desert plants? Hear the answers and learn about the Arboretum's history and mission on a guided walked of the 1.5 mile long main trail each day, starting at 11:00 am from the breezeway lobby of our visitor center. Confirm event times here

Every Weekend - Catalina State Park

Guided HikesBlooming Prikly Pear Cactus

7am @ Scheduled Hike Meeting Location, Every Sunday, come and explore the trails of Catalina State Park and the Santa Catalina Mountains through these guided morning hikes. Led by Catalina State Park volunteer and experienced hiker Gaston, come and see the park in a new light! Hike difficultly varies; hikers are required to carry plenty of water and snacks, and wear proper clothing, shoes, and hats. Please call Hike Leader Gaston @ 520-638- 5404, for upcoming hike information and to register. Registration closes by 4pm on the Saturday prior to the scheduled hike. Hikes subject to cancellations or changes depending on weather conditions and hike attendance.

Every Weekend - Oracle State Park

The Kannaly Ranch House at Oracle State Park.The Kannally Ranch House Tour

10am. and again at 2pm.
Learn more about one of the earliest cattle ranching families to Oracle, and the architectural treasure they left behind, on a 45-minute Docent or Ranger-led tour of the Kannally family home. The Mediterranean-Revival Style ranch house built in 1929, is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. No reservation is needed. Free with park admission.

 

Dancers perform at a Suvoyuki Ceremony at Homolovi State ParkComing Soon! - Homolovi State Park

Tours of Homolovi IV

Come join Ranger Chad for a tour of Homolovi IV, one of the park’s archaeological sites that is not usually open to the public. The pueblo consisted of approximately 150 masonry rooms built in a step-wise fashion down the sides of a small butte on the west side of the Little Colorado River. It was occupied for a short time in the late 1200s, but the site also includes petroglyphs from a much earlier time. The site was excavated in 1989 by the Homolovi Research Program.

Homolovi IV Pueblo Tours will take place this fall on the following dates: September 26, 2015 October: 4, 10, 11, 17, & 25, 2015 & November 7, 2015 Meet at Homolovi Visitor Center 10:00 AM.

The tours will begin at the Homolovi State Park Visitor Center at 10:00AM and be finished by 12:30PM and are limited to 15 participants. Please call the park to reserve your spot on the tour of your choice (928) 289-4106. There is a $7 day use fee per car with up to 4 adults.


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May - All Month - Red Rock State Park

“Journey of the Butterflies” Movie

3pm. Daily Follow the 2,000-mile migration of monarchs to a sanctuary in the highlands of Mexico. Orange-and-black wings fill the sky as NOVA charts one of nature's most remarkable phenomena: the epic migration of monarch butterflies across North America. To capture a butterfly's point of view, NOVA's filmmakers used a helicopter, ultralight, and hot-air balloon for aerial views along the transcontinental route. This wondrous annual migration, which scientists are just beginning to fathom, is an endangered phenomenon that could dwindle to insignificance if the giant firs that the butterflies cling to during the winter disappear.

May - All Month - Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Art Exhibit: The Arizona Cavalcade of History

The Alan B. Davis Gallery is open with 16 paintings by renowned Western artist William Ahrendt, each depicting a significant event in Arizona’s colorful history. The paintings and their historical narratives were featured as a special 16-part “Cavalcade of History” series in Arizona Highways magazine from 1987 through 1990. Arizona Highways remembers this series as “among the magazine's most remembered illustrations.” The giclées reproductions on canvas were donated to the Tubac Historical Society in memory of longtime Tubac resident and businessman Alan B. Davis. The collection is on permanent display at the Tubac Presidio’s Otero Hall. Included with park admission: $5 adult, $2 youth 7-13, children free.

Geology Walking Tour at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkMay 23 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Geology walking tour with Scott McFadden (note 8am start time)

8am. Daily hours at BTA are 6am-3pm from May-through-September, and this tour moves to an 8am start time during summer months. See rocks and volcanic formations along our main trail on a guided tour that compresses almost two billion years of geologic history into just over one educational hour! Learn about Pinal schist, the volcanic origins of Picket Post Mountain and the Apache Leap tuff. See photos and read more Here

Gourd Art ClassGourd Art For Beginners

9am. Try your hand at gourd art -- gourds offer a 3-D canvas, they're a medium you can paint, etch, carve, burn, stitch, emboss on or all of the above. Basic Gourd Art returns Saturday morning May 23 and spaces are available, call 520.689.2723 and have a credit card ready to prepay the $35 fee ($45 for nonmembers). Gourd art is the most popular workshop offered by our artists-in-residence Vicki and Gerald Johnson; they've expanded their creative series to include advanced gourd workshops such as 'pine needle coiling', thunder gourds, and even a new class in gourd mask-making. For more info, email lpacheco@cals.arizona.ed

Butterfly at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkSaturday Butterfly Walk

9am. Central Arizona Butterfly Association volunteers Laura Miller and Marceline Vandewater, guide a walk in search of colorful butterflies around the gardens. Learn tips on how to ID them by color, patterns - and "host plants" essential to their life cycle. http://ag.arizona.edu/bta 

Night Under the Stars at Lost Dutchman State ParkMay 23 - Lost Dutchman State Park

Amazing Night Under the Skies

8:30-9:30 p.m. Join Dr. Sky, a radio/TV journalist based in Phoenix, for An Amazing Night Under the Skies. What planets will we see in the dark desert sky? Dress warmly and be prepared to be amazed at the sightings. Palo Verde Day Use area (weather permitting).

 

Edible Plants Walk at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkMay 24 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Sunday Edible & Medicinal Desert Plants walk with Dave Morris

8am. Explore the Curandero Trail on this slow-paced guided walking tour, a one-hour walk where ethno-botanist and Choctaw Nation tribal member Dave Morris shares his knowledge about the ways native plants have fed, healed and clothed Sonoran desert peoples for more than one thousand years. **Please note: this tour explores the Curandero Trail, which has steep sections that are not suitable for visitors who use wheelchairs or walkers.
http://ag.arizona.edu/bta

Tonto Natural Bridge State ParkMay 24 - Tonto Natural Bridge State Park

Geology and History of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park

2pm. Come out to the park and enjoy an easy to moderate walk around the park, where volunteer Barry Jones will teach you about the geology and history of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park. This event is free with the purchase of the regular admission fee of $5 per person for everyone 14 years and older, $2 per person for everyone 7-13, and 6 and under are free as long as an adult accompanies them. Tour is friendly for all ages. Please wear good shoes and make sure to bring water with you.

Lizard Walk at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkMay 30 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Saturday 'Lizard Walk' guided by "Wild Man Phil" Rakoci

8am. Sonoran Desert educator "Wild Man Phil" Rakoci, guides a walking tour in search of Ornate Tree Lizard and Western Whiprtails, Desert Spiny and Side-blotched Lizards. Bring a camera for close-up pictures of these colorful little reptiles. See photos and read more http://ag.arizona.edu/bta

May 30 - Red Rock State Park

Watercolor Workshop: “Butterflies”

10am. - 3pm. Are you interested in learning some basic tricks to watercolor painting? Red Rock State Park will be hosting Cathy Stedman for our ongoing series on the basics of watercolor painting. This will be an introductory to intermediate class. The series will cover the basics to watercolor painting-providing instruction and techniques with a theme each month.
Our May theme will be “Butterflies”. Cathy Stedman, a Sedona local, has been teaching watercolor since 1997. “Teaching is simply my best learning tool and I hope to bring others along as I learn”, she says. Cathy has taken classes from several well-known artists including Frank Web, John Salminen, and Gretchen Lopez.

This workshop will be held on Saturday, May 30th from 10:00 A.M. to 3:00 P.M. within our Hummingbird Room. Space is limited to 12 participants, so call ahead to reserve your spot. The workshop reservation fee is $50.00, which includes park admission, instruction, and all supplies or $40.00 with your own supplies. Please bring your own lunch. For additional information and reservations, please call Red Rock State Park at (928) 282-6907.


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June 7 - September 30 Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Special Museographic Exhibition: "Cerro de Trincheras Archaeological Site"

Take a journey through the history of Trincheras, from the first settlers to the current protection of the first archaeological site in the State of Sonora. This 20-panel international display was produced and installed by the Sonoran division of the Instituto Nacional de Antropología e Historia (INAH, National Institute of Anthropology and History), a Mexican federal government bureau established in 1939 to guarantee the research, preservation, protection, and promotion of the prehistoric, archaeological, anthropological, historical, and paleontological heritage of Mexico. Its creation has played a key role in preserving the Mexican cultural heritage. The panels display photographs of artifacts, archaeological features, and reconstructions of what life was like from the Pleistocene to the present. The texts are in Spanish with an English translation available. Jim Griffith considers Trincheras Sonora's most spectacular archaeological site. For four months only, this is an exhibition not to be missed! Included with park admission: $5 adult, $2 youth 7-13, children free.

June 2 - Catalina State Park

First Saturday Concert Series at Catalina State ParkFirst Saturday Concert in the Park

7:30pm. On the 1st & 3rd Saturday of the month (during the spring), enjoy an evening concert at the Trailhead with standard park admission. Bring a chair, and your own food and water to enjoy these concerts! Come and enjoy music the first Saturday of each month in the park with the Santa Catalina Mountains as the backdrop. All of the concerts take place at the Trailhead picnic area.Feel free to bring a chair and your dinner and enjoy the evening outside. June's concert will also feature a Food Truck, and free popcorn is available, both brought to you by the Friends of Catalina State Park. Learn more about this months Featured Performer at ganzmusic.com Featured Artist: BILL GANZ

June 2 - Red Rock State Park

Moonlight Hike

6:30pm. The Moonlight Hike is among the most popular interpretive hikes at the Park. Led by a naturalist, it gives hikers the rare opportunity to enjoy the sunset and moonrise from an overlook and return by the light of the moon, while also having the chance to learn about Sedona and its surrounding areas. Verde Valley and park history, as well as archeology, geology, botany, and riparian wildlife information, is also offered by a knowledgeable guide. The hike lasts two to 2 1/2 hours and covers a distance of approximately two miles.

Pre-registration and a $5.00 reservation fee by phone is required as well as an entry fee upon arrival ($5.00 per adult (14 and up) $3.00 per youth (7-13), and free for children (0-6). Rangers ask hikers to please arrive approximately 30 minutes before the starting time to insure participation. Wear suitable clothing, shoes (prepare for cool nights) bring water, and a flashlight. Night viewing programs may be canceled due to inclement weather. For additional information and reservations, please call (928) 282-6907.

June 6 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Dragonfly Walk with Roger Racut

8:30am. Join photographer and dragonfly enthusiast Roger Racut on a Saturday 'odonate excursion' in search of Flame Skimmers, Blue Dashers and Mexican Amberwings at Ayer Lake and Arboretum fountains and water features. The special guest tourguide July 4 is ASU Professor Pierre Deviche - explore Pierre's excellent website azdragonfly.net to read more about dragonfly biology and see photos. Dragonfly walks are included with daily admission of $10, or $5 for ages 5-12. Read more: HERE

June 6 - Red Rock State Park

Star Party

7:30pm. Come out and enjoy the night skies with the Astronomers of Verde Valley and the Rangers of Red Rock State Park in Sedona on Saturday June 6th. An introduction presentation at 7:30 P.M. will show current sky events and what's "up" in the spring skies. The planets Jupiter and Venus will provide views of our near neighbors and Saturn will make a brief appearance as the viewing session ends at 10:00 P.M.

Galaxies litter the skies in the constellations of Virgo, Coma Berenices and Ursa Major. Open Clusters, Globular Clusters, Planetary Nebula and many other stellar objects will be available for the attendees to see. There will also be a "Star Jar" craft project available for children during the presentation as well as space cookies, moon juice, and other complementary beverages.

Sedona has recently been accredited as the 8th International Dark Sky City in the World. This will help protect our night skies at Red Rock State Park. Attendance is limited and reservations are required.

Starjar Craft projectPre-registration and a $5.00 reservation fee is required by phone as well as an entry fee upon arrival ($5.00 per adult (14 and up) $3.00 per youth (7-13), and free for children (0-6). Night viewing programs may be canceled due to inclement weather. For additional information and reservations, please call (928) 282-6907.

ADDITIONAL EVENTS: Full Moon Hikes
Wednesday, July 1st (Including Telescopic Moon Viewing)
Friday, July 31st (Including Blue Moon Telescopic Viewing)
Saturday, August 29th
Sunday, September 27th
Tuesday, October 27th

Tonto Natural Bridge State ParkJune 7 - Tonto Natural Bridge State Park

Geology and History of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park

2pm. Come out to the park and enjoy an easy to moderate walk around the park, where volunteer Barry Jones will teach you about the geology and history of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park. This event is free with the purchase of the regular admission fee of $5 per person for everyone 14 years and older, $2 per person for everyone 7-13, and 6 and under are free as long as an adult accompanies them. Tour is friendly for all ages. Please wear good shoes and make sure to bring water with you.

Wildman Phil Rakoci - Lizard Walk at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkJune 13 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Saturday 'Lizard Walk' guided by Wild Man Phil and Steven Prager

8am. Sonoran Desert educator "Wild Man Phil" Rakoci and Arizona Audubon's Steven Prager guide a walking tour in search of Ornate Tree Lizard and Western Whiprtails, Desert Spiny and Side-blotched Lizards. Bring a camera for close-up pictures of these colorful little reptiles. See photos and read more http://ag.arizona.edu/bta

June 13 - Tonto Natural Bridge State Park

Clovis Points to Copper Bells: the Prehistoric Archaeology of the Payson Basin - with J. Scott Wood

11am. Tonto Natural Bridge State Park will be hosting an archaeological talk presented by J. Scott Wood from 11 A.M. to 12:15 P.M.. He was the Tonto National Forest Archaeologist from 1975 to 2015; for the last 7 years, Advisor to the Rim Country Chapter of the Arizona Archaeological Society and director of the on-going Goat Camp Ruin Excavation, Stabilization, and Interpretive Development Project for the Town of Payson.

The topic of the day will be a talk about Clovis Points to Copper Bells: the Prehistoric Archaeology of the Payson Basin. For an hour or so in the beautiful outdoor setting of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park, we will talk about the archaeology of the area around the Park, from Payson to the Rim and from Star Valley to Strawberry, who lived her when, what they did, why they came, and why they left, from the first nomadic big game hunters to the farmers living in 200 room villages. We will also talk about the relationships all of these people had with their environment, how they influenced it and how, ultimately, it directed their behavior and determined their ultimate fate. This will be followed up with a Q & A session.

The event is free with purchase of day use entrance into the park. $5 per person everyone 14 and older, $2 per person everyone 7-13, 6 and under are free if they are accompanied by an adult. For information about this event email Gavin at gerickson@azstateparks.gov or call 928 476-4202.

Foods of the Spanish Colonial PeriodJune 13 - Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Living History: Foods of the Spanish Colonial Period (Repeats June 27th)

11am-2 pm. For the summer months we are adjusting our Old World/New World foods program to focus on 1) the native and imported fruits of New Spain, and 2) how Mexico has developed and enhanced the notion of dessert. The presentations will educate visitors about the origins, nutritional/survival values and the incredible variety of these delectable foodstuffs. Featuring a special display and samples from the Old and New Worlds. Included with park admission: $5 adult, $2 youth 7-13, children free.

Frontier Printing Press DemonstrationsJune 14 - Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Frontier Printing Press Demonstrations (Repeats June 20 & 28)

11 am-3 pm. Professional printer and teacher James Pagels demonstrates the Washington Hand Press used to print Arizona’s first newspaper in 1859 and answers questions about hand press printing, typesetting, and other aspects of this marvel of industrial engineering. Included with park admission: $5 adult, $2 youth 7-13, children free.

Star Party at Homolovi State ParkJune 19 - Homolovi State Park

Star Party

7pm. Homolovi State Park Museum/Visitor Center, Join park staff and Homolovi's community partners for a fun filled night of community outreach and education in the field of observational astronomy, cosmology and astrophysics. Telescopes from local astronomers and the Little Colorado Astronomy Club will be set up in the museum circle. Moonlight tailgating? Picnic tables and barbeque grills available at the museum. Bring a flashlight, light jacket, lawn chair for a great night under the stars. There is a $7 day use fee per car with up to 4 adults. For more information call the park at 928-289-4106.

Medicine of the Spanish Colonial PeriodJune 19 - Tubac Presidio State Historic Park

Living History: Medicine of the Spanish Colonial Period

11 am–2 pm. When the Spanish soldiers and their families settled Tubac in 1752, there was no doctor or surgeon among them. It was the responsibility of the women to treat their family's physical complaints and wounds. Medicine was basic and dependent on herbs and plants known for their healing properties. This living history program features a display of medicinal herbs and plants, and knowledgeable commentary by an herbalist who will tell visitors how these plants were used by “curanderas” (healers) to treat illness and injuries. Included with park admission: $5 adult, $2 youth 7-13, children free.

Plants of the Bible Walk at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkJune 20 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Saturday Plants-of-the-Bible Land walk guided by Dave Oberpriller

8am. Pomegranates, figs, pines and palms are all plants referenced in scriptures -- they can also be seen in the gardens at BTA. See photos and read more HERE

June 21 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Tree Tour With Jeff Payne

8am. So, just what is an Arboretum? BTA staffer and Certified Arborist Jeff Payne leads this walk where visitors learn the answer to that often-posed question during a relaxed and leisurely guided tour through the forested areas of the Arboretum. Join Jeff for a chance to learn about the Arboretum's collection of oak and olive trees, native hackberry, mesquite and many more. Tree Tours are included with daily admission of $10, or $5 for ages 5-12. Read more: HERE

June 27 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Geology walking tour with Scott McFadden (note 8am start time)

8am. Daily hours at BTA are 6am-3pm from May-through-September, and this tour moves to an 8am start time during summer months. See rocks and volcanic formations along our main trail on a guided tour that compresses almost two billion years of geologic history into just over one educational hour! Learn about Pinal schist, the volcanic origins of Picket Post Mountain and the Apache Leap tuff. See photos and read more HERE

Edible Plants Walk at Boyce Thompson Arboretum State ParkJune 28 - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Sunday Edible & Medicinal Desert Plants walk with Kathy & Tom Mcdonald

8am. Explore the Curandero Trail on this slow-paced guided walking tour, a one-hour walk where desert plant enthusiasts Kathy & Tom McDonald share their knowledge about the ways native plants have fed, healed and clothed Sonoran desert peoples for more than one thousand years. ** Please note: this tour explores the Curandero Trail, which has steep sections that are not suitable for visitors who use wheelchairs or walkers. Read more http://ag.arizona.edu/bta


July Events at Arizona State Parks

Upcoming Events - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

July 4 - Dragonfly Walk guided by ASU Prof. Pierre Deviche
July 11 - Lizard Walk with Abi King (from AZGFD) and "Wild Man Phil"
July 18 - Plants of the Bible walk with Dave Oberpriller
July 25 - Butterfly Walk with Adriane Grimaldi - she's the education director over at Butterfly Wonderland
July 26 - Edible & Medicinal Desert Plants walk guided by ethno-botanist Dave Morris

Upcoming Events - Red Rock State Park

July 1 - Full Moon Hike (Including Telescopic Moon Viewing)
July 31 - Full Moon Hike (Including Blue Moon Telescopic Viewing)


Upcoming Events - Boyce Thompson Arboretum State Park

Aug. 1 - Dragonfly Walk guided by Roger Racut
Aug. 1 - "How to Juice a Prickly Pear Cactus" class taught by Chef Eric & Terri of Tall Order Catering

Upcoming Events - Red Rock State Park

August 29 - Full Moon Hike

 

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