Arizona Snowbowl Celebrates Eighty Years — February Party & Concert Planned

Established in 1938, Arizona Snowbowl is one of the longest continually operating ski resorts in the country and this season marks Arizona Snowbowl’s 80th anniversary. To celebrate, Snowbowl is hosting an on-mountain party and a free concert in Downtown Flagstaff, February 23–24.

Friday, Feb. 23, Arizona Snowbowl will kick off 80th celebrations with a family-friendly, 80s-themed deck party at the Hart Prairie Lodge from 3 to 7pm. Enjoy delicious barbeque with a DJ spinning 80s music, food and drink specials, complete with a Torchlight Parade at dusk. Snowbowl staff members will traverse the mountain lighting up Hart Prairie with torchlights at every turn.

The festivities continue Saturday, February 24 in Downtown Flagstaff with a special free concert at the Orpheum Theater from 7 to 11pm by the band Mogollon. The Orpheum Theater will be transformed into a snow globe with an ice bar, photo booth with free photo strip takeaways, and more.

“We’re excited to celebrate Arizona Snowbowl’s 80th anniversary with all of our passholders, guests, partners, employees, alumni and the town of Flagstaff,” stated J.R. Murray, general manager of Arizona Snowbowl. “It’s a great opportunity for us to say thank you for your support over the past 80 years!”

Since 2012, the resort has experienced a complete transformation with more significant improvements at Snowbowl over the past six years than during the past 74.

“Snowbowl has certainly come a long way over the years, but even more so in recent history, which has really made an impact on the resort, our services and the product we offer our guests,” stated Murray. “Arizona Snowbowl has truly gone through a renaissance over these past six years with major improvements to the mountain that have significantly enhanced our guests’ experiences.”

Since 2012, Snowbowl has added snowmaking infrastructure, which revitalized the ski resort. Snowbowl now has more consistent slope conditions, and longer and more reliable seasons. Its state-of-the-art snowmaking system provides coverage of more than 65 percent of designated trails. Snowmaking has significantly improved the ski product and provides a solid base of snow throughout the entire season. Guests can plan winter trips, including spring break vacations in March and April with more confidence. Employees also have more consistent work throughout the season.

Snowmaking isn’t the only major improvement at the resort. Over the past three years, Snowbowl has added a new lift every year. In 2015, Snowbowl opened its first new chairlift in 30 years, the Humphrey’s Peak Quad, which serves popular intermediate trails, including Route 66 and Pluto. In 2016, Arizona Snowbowl installed its first high-speed lift — the only high-speed six-person lift in Arizona. The new Grand Canyon Express, named because you can see the Grand Canyon while riding the lift, transports skiers up the mountain in six minutes with access to more than 80 percent of the ski area. The top terminal is located on Ridge Trail at 10,900 feet in elevation. In 2017, Snowbowl’s old double Hart Prairie chairlift was replaced by a new quad chairlift with a loading conveyor, which makes loading the lift easier and more efficient, especially for beginners. The new lift’s capacity is 1,800 people per hour which is double the old two-person lift, reducing wait times for skiers and snowboarders.

Also new this winter, Snowbowl is opening a new 300-seat restaurant, doubling the dining capacity at the base area. A new pedestrian overpass now connects the Hart Prairie Lodge with the Grand Canyon Express and Sunset chairlifts, eliminating the previous crosswalk, and helping reduce traffic and improve flow up to the Agassiz Lodge. The Flagstaff ski resort also refreshed its brand and logo this season. The new logo incorporates a contemporary mountain design, which is integrated in Arizona Snowbowl’s new website which makes finding information and buying lift tickets, season passes, rental packages, ski and snowboard lessons much easier.

These enhancments are part of multi-mountain capital improvement projects totaling $35 million over three consecutive seasons from 2015 to 2018 across five mountains: Arizona Snowbowl, Purgatory Resort, Sipapu Ski & Summer Resort, Pajarito Mountain, Hesperus Ski Area, plus Colorado’s largest snowcat skiing operation, Purgatory Snowcat Adventures.

“While Snowbowl celebrates its 80 year-long history, the resort continues to keep its eye on the future with a strong commitment to enhancing the overall guest experience,” stated Murray. “Our team continues to enhance our mountain master development plan and work with the Forest Service so we can provide mountain biking and other multi-seasonal activities at Snowbowl.”

Arizona Snowbowl is open daily with eight lifts turning from 9am to 4pm. For more information about Arizona Snowbowl, visit

Photos courtesy of Arizona Snowbowl

The Listening Room Phoenix To Open November 20

Grand Opening Event Features Woodstock Legend, Melanie, along with Special Guests

Valley music lovers will soon have a new space for enjoying live acoustic music. The Listening Room Phoenix, an intimate live video recording studio and performance space, will open its doors in Midtown Phoenix on Sunday, November 20 at 6pm with a special performance, Melanie – An Intimate Evening of Song and Conversation. This exclusive night will provide guests unprecedented, up-close-and-personal access to the songs and stories by Woodstock legend, Melanie, along with her son, guitar master Beau, and daughter, singer-songwriter, Jeordie. Guests will have the chance to interact with the musicians during a post-show meet-and-greet.

The brainchild of music industry veterans Jim Colletti and Adam Smith, The Listening Room Phoenix was designed first-and-foremost with the performer in mind. Smith, a singer-songwriter and his manager, Colletti, dreamed of a space where everyone could enjoy pure, acoustic music that is free from the distractions of outside noise, clinking dishes, chatter and other unwelcome sounds that often lessen the experience. With sound provided by Bose, The Listening Room is acoustically balanced and technically sound, offering the perfect space for acoustic performance artists and the people who appreciate them. Unlike any music space in the Valley, the 50-seat audience actually becomes part of the experience. Each show is recorded before a studio audience, enabling musicians to have a professional demo of their work in a distraction-free, live performance setting.
According to Colletti, “We truly believe if the performer has everything needed to present their best possible performance, the audience will surely have the best possible experience.”

Melanie first shot to stardom in 1969 with her unforgettable appearance at the Woodstock Festival. The performance prompted the now common phenomenon of signaling an artist for an encore by holding up some form of light. In her hit song, Lay Down (Candles in the Rain), Melanie shared her experience of when the audience lifted up their candles in the rain during her set at Woodstock. Melanie’s singles Brand New Key (Roller Skate Song), Lay Down (Candles in the Rain), Peace Will ComeLook What They’ve Done To My Song, Ma and Ruby Tuesday have all achieved chart success, with Brand New Key reaching number one and remaining in the charts for 18 weeks in 1971.

The Listening Room Phoenix is located near Seventh Street and Camelback Road at 4614 North 7th Street, Phoenix. Tickets to Melanie – An Intimate Evening of Song and Conversation are $50 (+service fee) and can be purchased by visiting

Make Your Voice Heard: 2016 Election Dates To Know

You may have noticed, it’s election season. Here are a few dates to be aware of:

Aug 1, 2016
Voter registration deadline for Primary Election
Aug 3, 2016
Early Voting begins for Primary Election
Aug 30, 2016
Primary Election
Oct 10, 2016
Voter registration deadline for General Election
Oct 12, 2016
Early Voting begins for General Election
Nov 8, 2016
General Election

voteTo register to vote, or for more information on upcoming state-wide and federal elections, visit the Arizona Secretary of State website.

For additional information, visit the the Maricopa County Recorder website or your contact your municipality for local information:

Town of Carefree

Town of Cave Creek:

City of Phoenix

City of Scottsdale

Tranquility Trail Animal Sanctuary In Danger Of Closing

Tranquility Trail Animal Sanctuary is searching for a new location. The Scottsdale facility not only provides shelter to the third most surrendered animal (rabbits), they are a cornerstone to something much larger by providing volunteer and educational opportunities to all ages. The sanctuary’s educational youth programs offer an opportunity to teach children about leadership, kindness, compassion and responsibility. And its annual Holiday Pet Festival, scheduled for December 3 at WestWorld of Scottsdale, offers a day of interactive activities, demonstrations, exhibitions, shopping  and the opportunity to adopt animals from a number of area rescue groups.

And now, the animal sanctuary is in need of support from the community it serves. Executive director Kelly Ames says that an out-of-state investor purchased the building Tranquility Trail has called home for the past five years, and opted not to renew their lease without a “massive” increase in rent. Tranquility Trail has six weeks to find a new location to continue their work in the community.

“We would love if property owners could contact us directly,” says Ames. “We are looking for 4,000-6,000 square feet, fully air conditioned, wide open floor plan. We are trying to stay under 95 cents a square foot. The sanctuary, our retail pet supply boutique and our resale boutique will all be part of the location we are seeking.”

Tranquility Trail Animal Sanctuary welcomes worldwide travelers on a monthly basis and was voted in the top 20 shelters worldwide and favorite shelter in Arizona for the past three years. The organization has to be out of its current location at 7848 East Redfield Road, Suite 7, by the end of August.

Ames can be reached via email at For more information, visit

Photos courtesy of Tranquility Trail Animal Sanctuary

Newest Phoenix Fry’s Food Store Features Mural By Local Artist

Fry's MuralThe Public Art Program of the Phoenix Office of Arts and Culture, in partnership with Fry’s Food Stores, commissioned Valley-based artist Lauren Lee to create a mural in the newest Fry’s Marketplace. The store, located at 1311 East Bell Road, opened on Friday, July 15.

Lee was chosen from among 23 Phoenix area artists who applied for the $7,500 commission to paint the 12ft wide by 5ft high mural.

“Lauren was selected because she was able to convey the spirit of community and Arizona’s vibrant landscape with a bold and interesting graphic treatment.” says Bo Wachendorf, Fry’s Food Stores Art Project Manager.

The mural for the new Fry’s Marketplace in Phoenix draws upon iconographic imagery from the nearby community and celebrates the diverse landscape and wildlife of Arizona’s desert.

Lee is a full-time artist whose large-scale murals can be seen throughout the Valley. She divides her time between painting murals and smaller works for her frequent gallery exhibitions. She is a 2007 fine arts graduate of Arizona State University.

“Lauren’s mural underscores the unique value and sense of place art can add to our experiences in stores and other private developments,” says Edward Lebow, director of the Phoenix Public Art Program, which ran the process of selecting the artist. “We’re pleased that Fry’s is taking the lead in bolstering community connections between private development and the arts through mural commissions like this one.”

For more information on the Office of Arts and Culture, visit or call 602.262.4637.

Law Enforcement Community Hosts Fundraiser To Support Phoenix Police Officer Ben Denham’s Fight Against Rare Autoimmune Diseases

Denham Family

The Denham Family

A community fundraiser will be held on Saturday, July 16, from 9am-1pm at Deer Valley Airport in the Phoenix Police Air Support Unit hangar to benefit Phoenix Police Officer and father of four, Ben Denham. Officer Denham was diagnosed with two rare autoimmune diseases, Systemic Sclerosis and Polymyositis. Currently there is no cure for either disease, but there are treatments available to manage his symptoms.

Officer Denham has been a member of the Phoenix Police Department for 15 years. His desire is to get the treatment necessary to slow the progress of his diseases so that he can rehabilitate and return to work in order to finish the 20-year career goal of public service he started. Due to Denham’s diagnosis and ongoing medical treatments, he needs financial support to make it through the tough road ahead. The treatments are expensive and his medical bills have exceeded $300,000 to date. Any funds raised from the event will be used towards Denham’s continuing treatment and rehabilitation so that he can return to serving the community.

Officer Denham and his son

Officer Denham and his son

The fundraising event is open to the public and will feature a pulled pork cooking competition, a magic show and a live band, among other attractions. To raise funds, lunch will be available for $5 a plate. In addition, there are raffle items, including Arizona Diamondbacks tickets, ASU tickets, Arizona Cardinals autographed sports memorabilia, stainless BBQ Grill, themed gift baskets, flat screen TV and much more. Vendors and food trucks will also be on site to support the cause.

“This is a cause that is near and dear to our heart and we support Officer Denham and his family,” says Keith Politte, Phoenix Police Sergeant. “Our job is to serve the community as well as fellow officers who are in need. We want Officer Denham to return to doing the job he loves.”

The fundraiser is a collaborative effort of community volunteers, local law enforcement and other first responders and is being organized by Sergeant Politte a Phoenix Police veteran who has coordinated multiple community fundraisers for law enforcement officers in need.

The Phoenix Police Air Unit, Deer Valley Airport is located at 102 East Deer Valley Drive in Phoenix.

For those wanting to make a donation directly, a GoFundMe page has been set up for Officer Denham (, or checks can be mailed to the Phoenix Police Foundation:
Phoenix Police Foundation c/o Sergeant Charmane Osborn
620 W. Washington St, Phoenix, AZ 85003

All donations made to the Phoenix Police Foundation will be accepted in accordance with 501(c)3 #861014450.

For more information on the community event and fundraiser, visit the ‘Support Officer Denham’ Facebook page:

Have A “Wet Hop Arizona Summer” With Federal Pizza

WetHopSummerFederal Pizza continues its pairing of triple-digit temperatures with ice-cold craft brews this month as part of its “Wet Hop Arizona Summer,” a dining deal offering a free growler filled with a rotating selection of craft draft beer to anyone who picks up a drive-thru pizza. Offered every Wednesday through Labor Day on September 5.

Call in a pizza (602.795.2520), pick it up via Federal’s dedicated drive-thru lane, and receive a free* (*Federal Pizza will be charging a penny for legal reasons) craft beer chub (32-ounce growler). Limit one free growler per transaction.

Federal Pizza’s “Wet Hop Arizona Summer” will also showcase a different craft brewery each Wednesday. Follow Federal Pizza on Instagram where each week they will announce the latest lineup.

The summer breweries includes:FederalPizza

Almanac Beer Company
Ballast Point Brewing & Spirits
Black Market Brewing
Four Peaks Brewing Company
Great Divide Brewing Company
Green Flash Brewing Company
Hess Brewing
Historic Brewing Company
Oskar Blues Brewery
Sierra Nevada Brewing Company
Speakeasy Ales & Lagers
Stone Brewing Company
Victory Brewing Company

Federal Pizza is located at 5210 North Central Avenue in Phoenix. For more information, call 602.795.2520 or visit

Ripe Awards Honor Culinary Excellence


The 2015 Ripe Award winners

The Ripe Awards honor the rising stars of the greater Phoenix food scene, and this year’s recognition ceremony is slated for Saturday, July 30.

Now in their fourth year, the Ripe Awards will once again recognize cutting-edge chefs and a bartender from across the Valley who are expected to make a major culinary impact in the year to come. Winners were chosen by representatives of the Phoenix Art Museum and The Arizona Republic following an open-to-the-public nomination process. Ripe nominees are acknowledged for their unique contributions to the local culinary scene and their ability to best represent the essence of Phoenix through food.

Award ceremony attendees at the event can sample winners’ creations, sip on locally made wines and celebrate the best and brightest of the Phoenix food community. Winners of this year’s awards will join the likes of past honorees such as Justin Beckett, Charleen Badman and Gio Osso. To learn more or purchase tickets, visit

Cholla Prime Steakhouse & Lounge Introduces Light Summer Dining

Cholla Prime Steakhouse & Lounge at Casino Arizona is introducing a light and delicious salad as part of its summer special (paired with a delectable blue cheese-crusted New York strip steak). And restaurant chef Nicole Morrison is sharing the recipe so guests can enjoy this fresh, seasonal salad anytime, anywhere.

Cholla Summer Special

Photo credit: Casino Arizona

Cholla’s Summer Chopped Salad Special


  • 8 oz. sliced romaine
  • 2 oz. sliced purple kale
  • ¼ cup red and yellow bell pepper, sliced
  • ¼ cup seeded, diced cucumber
  • 3 cherry tomatoes (cut in half)
  • 2 oz. mustard lemon vinaigrette
  • Salt and pepper to taste


Mix romaine, kale, bell peppers, cucumbers and tomatoes with the mustard lemon vinaigrette and salt and pepper.

Casino Arizona is located at the Loop 101 Freeway and McKellips Road in Scottsdale. For more information, call 480.850.7777 or visit

“Conquer the Summer” At Hilton Tucson El Conquistador

Yes, Arizona is hot in the summer, but relief can be found just a short jaunt south of the Valley.  Hilton Tucson El Conquistador Golf & Tennis Resort is conquering the heat by discounting rates for summer stays starting from $109 per night and offering an entertaining lineup of daily activities for all ages, most of which are free.

Nestled at the base of the Santa Catalina Mountains, the AAA Four Diamond resort recently unveiled newly renovated outdoor amenities, allowing summer guests to be among the first to take a dip in the redesigned Desert Oasis Pool featuring new poolside cabanas, and to enjoy famed local favorite Eegee’s signature frozen fruit drinks poolside at the new poolside bar and grill. Children and the young at heart can splash down a 143-foot waterslide and the little ones can safely play and stay cool in a separate fish-shaped kid’s play pool with water features. As the sun sinks below Pusch Ridge, families and friends can gather around several new outdoor poolside fire pits and new lobby bar patio for fireside cocktails and $5 s’mores kits while capturing stunning views of the sunset.  Creating a uniquely Southwest experience, a Native American flute player salutes the approaching night with song every evening.

As part of the “Conquer The Summer” programming, the resort is offering a robust lineup of activities for all ages, including complimentary daily morning fitness classes, poolside games and a live poolside DJ, dive-in movies Friday and Saturday nights, solar tours Saturday afternoons, and Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum animal encounter experiences each Sunday morning. Children under the age of five also eat free all summer long with purchase of an adult entrée, and can participate in cooking classes with the chef for a small fee.  Adult guests who simply want to escape it all can retreat to the adults-only Acacia Pool offering a quiet, scenic area for guests to relax and rejuvenate and Elements Spa, the resort’s boutique spa offering massage, body treatments and energy work.

At check-in, resort guests will also receive a “Passport to Summer Savings” booklet filled with additional special offers to take advantage of while experiencing the resort’s amenities and a souvenir book for the children.

Valid for stays May 27-September 5, 2016 summer packages at Hilton Tucson El Conquistador include:

  • Conquer the Summer standard summer rates from $109/night
  • Leisure Escapes Package from $129/night
    • Standard accommodations
    • $50 resort credit per night of stay to use on-property for resort dining, shopping or spa services
    • For reservations, visit or call 800.325.7832 and request rate code “RPTVS1”
  • All-Inclusive Resort Dining Package from $179/night
    • Standard accommodations
    • Breakfast for two (up to $38), lunch for two (up to $45), dinner for two (up to $45), valid at any of the resort’s five restaurants
    • Offers a savings of up to 35 percent off retail value
    • For reservations visit or call 800.325.7832 and request rate code “2T”

For more information and for reservations, visit Packages and rates do not include the $20 daily resort fee, which includes guest WiFi, two-hour bike rental, 15 percent off massage treatments, and one-hour driving range and tennis court time at adjacent El Conquistador Golf & Tennis facility.

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