We have an incredible five day excursion coming up beginning on April 9th and returning to the Phoenix area on the 13th. We will visit Sedona on day one with an option for a Pink Jeep tour, followed by an overnight stay in Flagstaff. Day two takes in the Grand Canyon…. with visits to many of the South Rim National Park overlooks. After an overnight stay in Kanab, UT, we will visit Zion and Bryce Canyon National Parks on day three. Settle in for the evening on Wednesday in Bryce Canyon City and on day four, enjoy Lake Powell and Antelope Canyon. The final overnight will be in Page, AZ, before a visit to the amazing and vast beauty of Monument Valley. The journey continues back to Phoenix in the early evening of April 13th. Visit http://www.arizonascenictours.com and complete the information on the Contact Us page for more info!!
For my first posting in this new line of posts, I am going to go over the Arizona State Flag. You might know what it looks like…. but do you know the history behind it?
Officially, the State of Arizona website, museum and official materials cite the following origins of the Arizona flag: Charles Wilfred Harris, Colonel in the Arizona National Guard, served as the captain of the unit’s rifle team in 1910. During the rifle competition at Camp Perry, Ohio, the Arizona team was the only team without an emblem of any kind. Colonel Harris was chiefly responsible for the creation of the rifle team flag that in 1917 became the Arizona State Flag. Blue and gold are the colors of Arizona. Red and gold are the colors carried by Coronado’s Expedition of 1540 to the Seven Cities of Cibola. The blue is “liberty blue” identical to the color in the United States flag field of stars and represents our pride in becoming a state. Since Arizona is a western state the rays of the setting sun seemed appropriate. There are thirteen rays representing the original “thirteen colonies.” The large copper star identifies Arizona as the largest producer of copper in the United States. The flag was adopted on February 17, 1917, by the third state legislature. It was passed into law without the signature of Governor Thomas Campbell. The governor did not officially state his reasons for taking no action on the bill.
The following describes the transition of “Rifle Team Flag” to “State Flag”: While Colonel Harris is credited with the creation of the Rifle Team flag, several individuals appear to have played a role in the creation of the state’s first official flag. WR Stewart of Mesa was working in conjunction with Colonel Charles W. Harris, who was the Arizona Adjutant General and head of the Arizona National Guard. Stewart, as President of the Mesa Rifle Team, felt compelled to design a flag for competition. WR Stewart’s wife (Mae) sewed the first flag for competition from a sketch that he had made on the back of an envelope. Carl Hayden, Arizona’s first US Senator was reported to have been involved with Colonel Harris in designing the first state flag, and his wife, Nan Hayden was responsible for sewing the first state flag. Rachel Berry, a leader in women’s suffrage and the first woman elected to our State Legislature in 1914 (taking office in 1915), is also reported to have co-designed the Arizona flag with Nan Hayden in the years preceeding statehood (1912). She became a huge advocate for our flag becoming official. It is likely that many individuals were involved in its conception, design and production, rather than one or two individuals working independently.
The Arizona State Flag is definitely unique. One might often wonder when seeing it…. how it came to be. So next time you see it flying, you will have some knowledge of why it looks the way it does and what it represents. It represents history and exploration, it represents our copper rich soil and amazing sunsets, and it represents pride in statehood. And that is just the beginning.
How much do you know about your home state? How many people do you know that are native to your state? How far back can you trace your ancestry and how many of those roots stay in your state? This tells a lot about where you live and the culture of your state.
Arizona has a very unique history and culture and much of it is directly due to the questions above. It would be very difficult to find anyone in Arizona over the age of 35 that is an Arizona native. They are out there, sure… but odds are you will have to ask a few people before finding one. The older the person you ask, the worse your chances of success. Let me disclaim, that there is one area where this is not true. Over 25% of the land in Arizona is Native American owned. So ask there, and well… you get the point.
So, beyond the Native American population in Arizona, the growth in population here is quite recent. The first boom was during the mining claim years during the mid to late 1800s. The next booms were during WWI and WWII. Both World Wars brought much growth to Arizona. WWI mostly due to the needs for copper and WWII mostly due to technology. Motorola set up shop here in 1948, just after the war as an example. However, the population of Arizona did not reach 1 million until 1960.
The speed of growth would then accelerate. In the next 25 years, the state population would grow to over 3 million. The 6th largest state in land area would be the 25th largest in population. Another 25 years later…. and we stand at over 6.5 million and are now the 16th most populated state in the US. When your state population grows by 650% in 50 years…. there are a LOT of people that have arrived RECENTLY that were born elsewhere.
So what do we have? A lot of people here in Arizona from varied places around the world. A lot of different cultures blending together. A lot of people that do not know much about the early years of Arizona. The prehistoric ancient times. The ancient tribes. The Spanish Period. The Mexican Period. The American Period.
I would like to help you to learn, bit by bit, the background and history of Arizona. For those of you that do not live here? Read posts in this series to learn about Arizona…. and let it motivate you to learn about your own state or country. For those that live here, tune in to eventually learn where the words “Arizona” and “Tucson” came from, why Why is called Why, why Arizona had to wait until 1912 for statehood instead of 1911, why our state flag looks like it does, why pioneers were suddenly so unsafe here when the Civil War began and much more.
So have your friends and family follow my blog, and follow or like my Arizona Scenic Tours page on Facebook, or follow @azscenictours on twitter, so you can keep up with the posts, under the heading “Getting to Know Arizona”.
Short post today… Historic Downtown Flagstaff is a wonderful place. Historic hotels, shopping, dining, music and drinks. Cool getaway that will soon be COLD. GREAT fall colors right now. Try Josephines or 1899 for dining. Hotel Monte Vista or Weatherford for music.
Today we’ve got four peeps from Scotland visiting Tombstone! They are in Phoenix for a Great Dane Dog show. GREAT SCOT! Did you know the phrase Great Scott! was brought about to honor General Winfield Scott of the Union Army? Did you know another Winfield Scott, this one a Major in the Army and a chaplain was the namesake for Scottsdale, Arizona? Before that, the area east of Phoenix was called Orangedale due to the orange groves throughout the area.
So here I am in Tombstone. Where Ed Schefflin was told he would find his tombstone. Well, he sold his mining claims for a small fortune and died a rich man long after naming the town Tombstone to spite the naysayers!
While here, be sure to visit the Tombstone Courthouse Museum. One of the best historical spots in Arizona. Stop and get some fudge at Boothill Graveyard. Go on a haunted stagecoach tour! Eat at Big Nose Kates… Doc Hollidays girlfriend who was called that because she stuck her nose in everyone elses business!
Alright pardner… round em up and git to that there trick r treatin!
Aerospace tour in Tucson today, with a side dish of Spanish Mission history. First stop was Titan Missle Museum… awesome one hour tour! The only remaining Titan II Missile silo left thanks to Ronnie Reagan and the SALT treaties with the USSR. No Angelina here. Go into the silo and experience what it may have been like for crew members on a 24 hour shift waiting to press the big red button! Actually they were more concerned with testing the propulsion systems as they typically failed. The warhead was possibly the most stable item in the silo!
Now, here at Pima Air and Space Museum which is by far the best aircraft exhibit on Earth. About to grab some lunch…
Wild AZ fact: If AZ were to become a separate country it would have the largest Air Force in the world, due to all the aircraft stored on the boneyard at Davis-Monthan AFB!
Today’s Arizona Scenic Tours blog comes from Sedona. Sorry, no canyon today. Well, drove through Black Canyon. And near Oak Creek Canyon. So… there are canyons around. Montezuma Castle is still there. John, the volunteer ranger there is awesome! Stop and say hi. I have gotten quite a bit of AZ info from him. Like… Bisbee is the southern-most mile high town in the US. Didya know that?
So… after a visit to Bell Rock and Chapel of the Holy Cross, it was on to Uptown Sedona where I am now. Just had a famous hot dog at the Black Cow Cafe. Cool place, great ice cream cones… been coming here since I was a kid.
Tangent! Grown Ups is an awesome movie. Dude asks Adam Sandler guy if he gained some weight. He answers, yeah since I last saw you when I was ten I think I did. Hahahahahaha.
Ok, Im back in Sedona now. If you have been here a few times, maybe you have not been to the Sedona Heritage Museum. You should check it out! At the top of Jordan Rd outside of Uptown. Open 11 to 3. Sedona was founded on apple and peach orchards. The museum is on the grounds of one of the old orchards. $3 or $5 with audio tour.
Ok… Stevo out.
Greetings from the Grand Canyon…. many of my tours are here either directly, via Sedona or as part of a multiple day trip. So many of my short “mobile blog posts” will likely be from here.
Interesting Canyon fact of the day… I will keep it basic for now. The ENTIRE canyon is in Arizona. The north rim is NOT in Utah. It is 277 “river miles” long. The river I refer to is of course, the Colorado River.
Off beat sighting of the day, Pronghorn Antelope just east of Williams.
Stupidity witnessed today… going north on SR 64, with a few miles to go, with a line of cars ahead, and actually going the limit, not under…. a few cars decided they needed… NEEDED to pass. Oncoming motorcycle had to drive on shoulder to avoid being hit. Idiots. As I approached the gates to the park, couldnt help but notice I got in before the passers. They ended up in a longer line. INSTANT KARMA.
Today Ive got a couple of Steelers fans that are visiting Phoenix to see their team beat up on the Cardinals. The Canyon Lake portion of the tour is really scenic… great relaxing 90 minute cruise if you ever have a free afternoon with a desire to see some of the best desert scenery in Arizona… from a boat.
Hey did you know that Saguaro cacti have pleats that run up their sides vertically, so that they can expand or contract to hold more or less water… in an accordion like fashion.
Theres your cactus comment of the day…
Hello cactus lovers!! Welcome to my Arizona Tour blog!! Here, when I have time…. I will BLOG about my trips through Arizona, about my experiences in Arizona and just about anything else having to do with the youngest state in the 48 contiguous….
Whether it be an interesting tour or group, some really cool AZ info, or even something I learned about the REST of the world from people on my tours…. it’ll be here.