31 October 2010

Happy Halloween - or else!

Inflatable Frankenstein is on guard near the Gaslight Costume Shoppe. He's not carrying a bag, though, so I'm not sure how he can haul his candy back to his lair. Have fun tonight, all you trick or treaters!

30 October 2010

Art landscape is moving fast ~

One of the most exciting pieces of Tucson news is the ongoing renovation of the downtown area and a key player in this renaissance is the Providence Corporation. They moved their headquarters downtown and are now partnering to renovate two adjacent buildings. Just a few days ago I noticed this fun mural ("Create to Inspire") mural on the construction site's plywood wall. And already the mural has changed - stay tuned and I'll post the the newest iteration soon. For more about what's happening to revitalize downtown Tucson, go to:

29 October 2010

Fortunato's final resting place?

This bricked up window caught my eye at Broadway Village - one of Tucson's most charming shopping areas. I suppose it is due to Halloween - the season of all things ghoulish - being almost upon us that I remembered poor Fortunato's fate. Lured by the promise of tasting a superb Amontillado he watched his own tomb being created brick by brick....

28 October 2010

Mother, Child, & SKULLS ~

There are many beautiful and interesting murals in South Tucson and in the spirit of the Halloween season I'm posting this one. I hope to hear your comments about the images of mother, child, and multiple skulls. Check out the skulls on her dress hem and on the canisters perched on the floral background. Any thoughts?

27 October 2010

In honor of Paul, the Psychic Octopus ~

Rarely does the sports world have such a weird story that captures everyone's attention. Paul, the incredible psychic octopus and soccer expert who predicted the World Cup winner, died in his sleep on Tuesday. Here's a fun old station wagon that is painted with an undersea theme - including coral branches and jelly fish!

26 October 2010

Tucson's biggest black cat ~

If you were a mouse in THIS neighborhood, you should be afraid - be very afraid. This 10' long cat looks hungry and ready to pounce from this rooftop. Of all the black cats in the world Tucson can boast that it has one with an orange striped tail. Oh yes, and an orange nose. Meow!

25 October 2010

Give this Tucson witch a traffic ticket!

Poor thing ~ out flying around on her broom and WHAM - she slams into one of Tucson's finest (saguaro that is). Ouch.

23 October 2010

Calling all Tucson botanists ~ please check in!

You may remember seeing previous posts of my friend Cathy's incredible vegetable garden. Well today she sent me this photo of a cactus flower that is growing near her garden. She doesn't know the name of this unusual flower but I'm hoping a site visitor will identify it and let us all know. Thanks!

22 October 2010

Arizona's Flag Sky ~ morning in Tucson

If you know Arizona's state flag, this spectacular sunrise will look familiar to you! Our wonderful weather is definitely a "Tucson Treasure" for us as well as for our many visitors.
Photo courtesy of Nathan Bunker.

21 October 2010

Tucson's giant leeks - or is it celery on steroids?

Just outside of another new burger franchise on the east side I noticed these crossed palms. I don't know why the fronds haven't been unwrapped yet but for now they look like big leeks or giant celery - don't you think?

20 October 2010

Tucson's most alert BUG ~

I laughed when I spotted this bug. The clever folks at the Gaslight Costume Shop have affixed a wire to this bug and every few seconds he turns his head! Believe me, it's funnier to see than to read about it here! (:

This place is considered the best costume shop in town so if your Halloween plans call for you showing up as Frankenstein, Marilyn Monroe, or Black Beard the Pirate, you've found the right place!

19 October 2010

Tucson's unique purple saguaro ~

You probably know by now that the Sonoran Desert is home to the heroic saguaro. But did you know that Tucson is home to the rare PURPLE saguaro? Yes, they are seen around town supporting bus shelters. And this patch of beautiful matching purple flowers just adds to the cheer!

18 October 2010

What a beauty! Who knew?

In recent years 44 N Stone (Stone & Pennington) was abandoned and boarded up. Prior to that it was a Walgreen's. Before that - I don't know what it was. The building dates to 1929 and has benefitted from the Downtown Facade Improvement effort spearheaded by the Downtown Tucson Partnership.

It is now restored and gorgeous! It looks like the space is just about ready to reopen. This is a beautiful addition to the downtown scene. To read more about this forward-thinking program that is improving downtown, click here.

17 October 2010

Tucson sushi cat ~

Did you ever wonder why all Japanese restaurants display a ceramic cat (or two or three) that have an uplifted paw? It's considered a lucky cat and the upraised paw is to welcome customers to the establishment.

16 October 2010

Jewel in downtown Tucson's crown ~

The Fox Theatre is an Art Deco treasure. Built in 1929 it was an important social venue in Tucson for decades but eventually fell into disrepair. In the last few years it was painstakingly restored and now serves as a movie theatre as well as a special event venue. Naturally, it has some scary movies scheduled for the Halloween season!

15 October 2010

Tucson treasure ~

This week I have been at a conference held at beautiful La Paloma. The attendees who stayed at the resort were treated to golf, excursions to Mt Lemmon & Sabino Canyon, etc. It was gratifying to hear the raves about our region's beauty from my colleagues. This is a view from the patio that opened from our meeting room.

14 October 2010

Tucson's biggest flag waver ~

Here's my Paul Bunyan post from May 30:
This 18-foot Paul Bunyan statue guards the corner of Glenn & Stone.... Currently he is without his ax - stolen, no doubt by some boozed up UA frat boys. Maybe they tried to sell it on ebay... Here's a great story about it:http://tucsoncitizen.com/rynski/2009/11/23/tucsons-paul-bunyan-has-ax-stolen/

And now, happily, I drove by today and see that he is holding a beautiful flag. Pretty impressive public art!

13 October 2010

A rose by any other name ~

In recent months I've posted many of the fantastic full-wall-size murals painted by Joe Pagac and displayed at the Rialto Theatre to advertise upcoming bands. Yes, for MONTHS he had been painting them and everyone (well, nearly everyone - read on) enjoyed the murals. That is until a band named "The New Pornographers" was scheduled. So interesting that THEIR mural went up (no nudity whatsoever) and lo and behold, the Rialto rec'd a notice that the mural must come down as it was in violation of the City's sign code (as was presumably every other mural that had been displayed for many months).

So, in answer to that still unresolved dust up, Bookman's has THIS mural on display at its Grant & Campbell location. For a really fun video that shows Joe Pagac in time lapse photography creating a mural, click here. Fun!

12 October 2010

A bit of England in Tucson ~ royal weirdness!

So imagine my surprise as I was driving down Blacklidge just west of Campbell and saw this castle! I asked a girl walking her dog if she knew anything about the castle and she said that she thought it was occupied by a family. Anyone know anything more about this interesting residence? I guess the "drawbridge" gate is the garage door. No moat, though.

11 October 2010

Umbrellas of the season ~

La Encantada is Tucson's most upscale shopping center ~ home to Tiffany's, Brooks Brothers, etc. It also has several restaurants offering a range of cuisines. Here are the pumpkin colored umbrellas providing shade on the patio at the restaurant "North."

10 October 2010

When were you last on a hay ride?

The weather is getting to be just about perfect now ~ cool(ish) nights and mornings, warm days. Just the right weather for a hayride! Here's an interesting image of some stacked bales from a local horse farm - a beautiful work of art!

09 October 2010

Harvest golds, oranges, yellows ~

Where just a few days ago you could drive by any number of empty lots around town, now many pumpkin stands have sprung up in those spaces. And not just pumpkins are for sale ~ I've seen organic vegetables, jams, honey, apple cider, Indian corn stalks, chili pepper wreaths... everything to get your house decked out for the ghouls and goblins to come.

08 October 2010

Pale pumpkin with orange door ~

The historic village of Tubac is always an interesting place for a stroll ~ dozens of galleries and working artists' studios as well as many shops and a few restaurants. It's an easy drive from Tucson. This unusual residence looks like Bilbo Baggins could live there, don't you think?

07 October 2010

'tis the season for cobwebs & coffins ~

Tucson's Trail Dust Town always has something going on. Here's a peek at a trio of coffins stacked up beside the hotel. Jeez, those cowboys - always shoot first, ask questions later.

06 October 2010

Bermuda? Nope, Tucson!

Charming pastel colors are not just for the islands! Tucson's historic Barrio District offers a rainbow of hues on the interesting homes and offices. What I particularly love is that every building is different. It is a beautiful place to stroll around ~ treats for the eye on every street. For more photos of this district, click on the "Barrio" link below this post.

05 October 2010

Crazy ceramic acrobats ~

Or maybe it's another totem (I must be on a roll with totems!).... This wacky sculpture is outside the ceramic studio housed in the historic Romero House near the Tucson Museum of Art. For information about ceramic classes, click here.

04 October 2010

Meet Shelby Hawkins - a Tucson force of nature!

Today I am delighted to introduce you to Shelby Hawkins, the 5th in our series of "Team Tucson," the people who make Tucson a great place to live. Do you remember the totem pole that was posted on September 19? Shelby is the founder of 5 Star Pest Control and the "guardian" of that totem pole. She protects it as part of her bond with the totem's carver, a man who was a little bit of a guardian angel to her and her family when she was just getting started in business.

Shelby is remarkable - she is the inventor of a unique process to eradicate pests and her firm was hired by Raytheon to tackle a particularly difficult project on an ecologically sensitive atoll in the Pacific (read all about it on the company website). Businesswoman, mother, inventor, pilot, and dog lover. Here is Shelby with her sweetie, Sweet Pea.

03 October 2010

Gift Certificate Notification ~

This is a shout out to Sharon, the follower who has won the $50 gift certificate! We notified you on October 1 that you won but we must hear back from you. Please reply to the email that you rec'd from us! Thanks!

A party kind of bank?

The words "festive," "fun," and "party" don't usually pop to mind when I'm thinking about banking but it looks like US Bank's downtown branch on Stone wants to change my mind. These colorful balloons tied at their entryway greet passersby.

02 October 2010

Fall dawn in Tucson ~

Well we might not have classic autumn foliage to admire in Tucson but we always have fantastic sunrises and sunsets! This dawn sky offers all the fall colors one might find in a New England landscape.
Photo courtesy Nathan Bunker.

01 October 2010

Mickey, Mickey... say it ain't so ~

Oh dear...somewhere along the way I obviously missed the news that the universally beloved Mickey Mouse is suitable as a Halloween ornament. An ORANGE Mickey Mouse? Mickey, say it ain't so! I wonder what Walt Disney would think of this....