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Tempe Tourism Blog

Exploring Phoenix’s Native American Culture

The Stand restaurant
March 27, 2017

Before all the houses, restaurants, shopping, museums and parks of Tempe and the sprawling Phoenix Metro Valley, Native American tribes had made Arizona their home for thousands of years. Their rich history and culture can be found woven throughout every region in the state. Whether you are a visitor to Tempe, or have lived in the area for years, don’t miss out on visiting these wonderful Native American tribal lands, fascinating museums and ancient ruins of the original inhabitants of Arizona. Hike up “A” Mountain for views of ancient Hohokam petroglyphs Located on the southeast corner of Mill Avenue and Rio Salado Parkway, “A” Mountain is situated adjacent to Arizona State University and Downtown Tempe.  “A” Mountain, officially named Hayden Butte Preserve Park, is not only a great spot for hiking and enjoying views of Tempe, but also a chance to get a glimpse into Native American history. The butte is culturally-significant to the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community, who consider the butte to be a sacred place and a link to its ancestors. Hikers and explorers alike can view hundreds of 500, or rock art images, that were made by the Hohokam between A.D. 750 and 1450. Many of the petroglyphs can be easliy seen from the trails on the south side of the mountain. Exploring the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community To get there from Tempe – Just 15 minutes north of Tempe, take the 101 N freeway and exit east on Indian School Rd. The community is located […]

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Tempe events: Childsplay presents Interrupting Vanessa

Interrupting Vanessa
March 21, 2017

Tempe events include the opening of Childsplay’s production of Interrupting Vanessa at Tempe Center for the Arts on March 25. Vanessa is young girl struggling to come to terms with the loss of her father.  She’s happiest alone in her room creating inventions out of interesting objects she finds. And then her mother does the unthinkable and invites Timmy Fibbins over to play forcing Vanessa to step out of her comfort zone and maybe even make a friend. In a world where imaginary friends seem real, and real friends are scarce, Vanessa discovers both. Interrupting Vanessa is on stage at the Tempe Center for the Arts from March 25-April 2. For more information and to purchase tickets, visit or call 480-350-2822. Tempe’s calendar is full of exciting events this week. See what’s happening below and view a complete listing of Tempe events, or call (480) 894-8158 for more information. March 21: 92 Steel and Guts Tempe Center for the Arts March 22: Spring Training Game: Angels vs. Rangers Tempe Diablo Stadium March 22: Yellowcard The Marquee March 22: Almost Homeless Comedy Tour Tempe Improv March 22-April 29: 3-D Astronomy Shows ASU Marston Exploration Theater March 23: Ignite Tempe Center for the Arts March 23: Beyond the Bricks: Thursday Night Live: Ryan Sims Hayden Square Amphitheater. March 23: Bonnie Rochman: The Gene Machine Changing Hands Bookstore March 23: The Motet & Dumpstaphunk The Marquee March 23-25: Comedian Nicole Byer Tempe Improv March 24: Spring training game: Angels vs. Mariners Tempe Diablo Stadium March […]

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What do travel professionals love about Tempe?

Travel professional testimonials for Tempe Tourism Office
March 20, 2017

The Tempe Tourism team strives to give our out of town visitors, meeting planners, meeting attendees, travel writers, and tour operators an experience that highlights the very best of Tempe. While we like to talk about why we love this fun and vibrant city, sometimes it’s nice to hear what others have to say. Check out what some travel professionals recently said about working with our team and their experience while visiting Tempe:  “I’ve had many great experiences in the past, and I’m rarely wowed – but I’ve got to say – WOW – who knew?  Tempe is fabulous!  I especially love the shopping area near ASU.  The properties shown were amazing and the restaurants magnificent.  I absolutely loved the botanical garden and thought the Tempe Center for the Arts is an amazing place. The “Snack Shacks” at Tempe Mission Palms just blew me away, as did the unusual themes of both the Moxy and Graduate properties. As for the Tempe team, what a wonderful working family they are.  You are very lucky to have them.  I salute you all for the wonderful job you did in bringing knowledge about Tempe to us all and in letting us know what a great place it is and will be for future events.” – Carol A. Marotta, Executive Assistant to Chris Casey – EVP, Product Leadership at Nielsen “Thank you, thank you, thank you for such an amazing four days exploring the Tempe and Chandler areas! I feel like we were shown around […]

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7 Tempe Springtime Activities for Kids

Boating at Tempe Town Lake
March 16, 2017

Looking for something fun to do with your kiddos while in Tempe this spring? From a day at the zoo to a relaxing farmer’s market and outdoor festival, there are plenty of fun options for all ages. Here’s a short list of some of my favorite things to do in Tempe for a fun-filled day out with the family. The little ones will have a blast and you will too! 1) Desert Botanical Garden: The desert is beautiful year-round, but it really comes alive in the spring. Cacti and wildflowers bloom in every color of the rainbow. Temperatures are perfect for hiking and leisurely strolls through Desert Botanical Garden. This year, the Garden opened a brand new Butterfly Pavilion. Their Spring Butterfly Exhibit is open every day through May 14, 2017 and entry is included with paid Garden admission or membership. Kids and adults alike will love mingling with these amazing creatures and learning all about their life cycles and conservation efforts. 2) Arizona Mills: You can easily spend a whole day at Arizona Mills in Tempe. In addition to more than 100 name brand outlets and value retailers, Arizona Mills is a family entertainment destination. Discover over 5,000 sea creatures at SEA LIFE Arizona Aquarium. Built specifically for kids, this attraction transports visitors into the amazing ocean world. Kids will love the interactive and hands-on experiences like touching a starfish, going on a scavenger hunt and walking through the 360-degree ocean tunnel. My favorite part is looking for the sea turtles and getting […]

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Tempe events: Disrupt FEST at Tempe Center for the Arts

Disrupt Fest
March 14, 2017

This week’s events include Disrupt FEST at Tempe Center for the Arts (TCA) on March 18, 2017.  This exciting new TCA event is a mashup of theatre and music featuring artists who challenge preconceived ideas about traditional performing arts. Doors open at 5 p.m. allowing time for attendees to enjoy tasty fare provided by local food trucks and cocktails at the TCA’s lounge. Performances begin at 6 p.m. with Neil LaBute’s provocative play, Some Velvet Morning, directed by TCA Artistic Director, Ralph Remington and starring Brian Runbeck and Christina Denkinger-Hutchinson. It’s an intense and electrifying story of obsession, desire and the nuances of gender relationships. With themes taken from today’s headlines, the work has both sharp and subtle contrasts, which are underscored by the mesmerizing music of Tandem Duo. At 8 p.m. the quirky, fun, Los Angeles based band, TOTSY, will perform. TOTSY’s music is reminiscent of burlesque theatre, speak-easies and light cabaret music.  It occasionally taking a twist as band members emulate the sounds of instruments and percussion using only their voices. TOTSY is led by the distinct vocal stylings of Beth Curry, (Broadway star of Legally Blonde and Young Frankenstein) and the guitar and production work of composer/songwriter, Brett Boyett. The final event, Ensemble Mik Nawooj, takes the stage at 9:30 p.m. Mik Nawooj is a “Hip-Hop orchestra, led by composer/pianist, Joe Wan Kim that combines classical compositions performed by leading classical musicians with vocal artists who counter with spoken word and rap.  The result is a fascinating blend […]

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Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Tempe

Rula Bula
March 13, 2017

If you are ready to live it up like a leprechaun and drink Guinness until you actually believe you’re Irish, then this St. Patrick’s Day, you’re in luck. Tempe has everything from entertainment, to great food and drink specials that get you feeling like you’re St. Patrick himself! Check out these close by locations in order to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day in Tempe. Just remember to have fun, and be responsible — use a cab or public transportation to get around. Celebrate St Patrick’s Day at Rula Bula Irish Pub!  401 S Mill Ave, Tempe, AZ 85281 | (480) 929-9500 Celebrate St. Patrick’s day in a big way this year by joining Rula Bula’s two day celebration. That’s right, two days! Starting March 16th, Rula Bula is celebrating St. Patrick’s Day with Ireland at 5:01 p.m.! But remember to pace yourself, because another full day of celebration continues on March 17th starting at 10 a.m. Enjoy live music with Trevor Jones, Tommy Rocker, Tempe Town Lake Pipe Band, Hanna Lopez, Whiskey Tango and McTeggart Irish Dancers. Also, enjoy promotions and giveaways by Guinness, Jameson Bushmills, Tullamore Dew and more. Cocktail specials and full food menu will be available including Best of Phoenix Fish ‘n Chips and Shepherd’s Pie. St. Patrick’s Day at Hackett House 95 W. 4th St., Tempe, AZ 85281 | 480-350-8181 Tempe Sister Cities invites you to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day with an Irish dinner at the Hackett House, located in Downtown Tempe. Tempe Sister Cities brings the Irish spirit to Tempe for […]

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Day Trip from Tempe: Cave Creek

Cave Creek Regional Park
March 10, 2017

I’ve lived in Arizona my whole life and there are so many places to explore in my home state. Cave Creek is one place that I remember well from childhood, but I hadn’t visited with my husband and my daughter. I’ve been married for 12 years and my daughter is eight years old. A visit to Cave Creek was way overdue! On a recent Sunday, we set off to rediscover scenic Cave Creek, a place that is within 45 minutes to an hour north of Tempe. It’s known for beautiful Sonoran Desert hiking trails, wide open spaces and spots that are reminiscent of the Wild West. We started out at Arizona Bread Co. in Tempe. This local favorite serves breakfast and lunch daily. They have one of the most tempting pastry cases that I’ve ever seen their menu is full of delicious omelets, breakfast sandwiches waffles and pancakes. We fueled up for our next adventure, and headed north to our hike at Cave Creek Regional Park. Cave Creek Regional Park is a hiker’s paradise. There are lots of trails to choose from, so I suggest going into the Nature Center and asking for recommendations. The staff was super helpful and they guided us to a trail that was the perfect length for my daughter, Piper. We did the Overton Trail and the Clay Mine Trail. The trailhead was right behind the Nature Center so it was really easy to find. The trails are well marked and there are even a […]

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Tempe events: Arizona Aloha Festival at Tempe Beach Park

Arizona Aloha Festival
March 7, 2017

Tempe events include the Arizona Aloha Festival at Tempe Beach Park, March 11-12, 2017 from 10 a.m.-5 p.m. So don your favorite Hawaiian shirt or other tropical garb and head to Tempe Beach Park to experience island culture here in the Sonoran Desert. It’s a free family event that celebrates Hawaiian, Tahitian, Samoan and other South Pacific cultures through dance and musical performances, free ukulele lessons, food, kid’s crafts and lots more.  Dust off your ukulele and join in the jam sessions for ukulele at Aunty Aloha’s Ukulele Corner. The Arizona Aloha Festival is two days packed with fun activities and events. It’s the next best thing to taking an island vacation. For all the details. visit Arizona Aloha Festival. Tempe’s calendar is full of exciting events this week. See what’s happening below and view a complete listing of Tempe events, or call (480) 894-8158 for more information. March 8: Arizona Women Who Made History Tempe History Museum March 8: Acharya Shunya: Ayurveda Lifestyle Wisdom Changing Hands Bookstore March 8: G. Love & Special Sauce The Marquee March 8-April 29: 3-D Astronomy Shows ASU Marston Exploration Theater March 9: Beyond the Bricks: Laura Walsh Hayden Square Amphitheater March 9-10: EDGE Happy Hour Tempe Center for the Arts March 9-12: Bob Marley Tempe Improv March 9-19: TCA Theatre Productions presents Some Velvet Morning Tempe Center for the Arts March 10: Padres vs. Angels Tempe Diablo Stadium March 10: Los Guys featuring Mark Zubia Tempe Marketplace District Stage March 10: Tempe Comedy […]

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Why I like spring training in Tempe

March 2, 2017

My favorite time of year is here. Spring. Spring means perfect weather in Arizona and lots of chances to get outside and have fun. Spring also marks the return of Cactus League Spring Training. I’m excited about Cactus League, but it’s not because I’m a baseball fan. (I hate to admit that I’m really not.) I like spring and spring training because of all of the fun things that happen during this time of year. Here are my top 6 ideas for springtime bliss in Tempe. Angels games at Tempe Diablo Stadium. Sure, you already know that I’m not a big baseball fan. And, for those of you who are, of course there are lots of exciting things to look forward to on the field this year. But, what I really like is the chance to soak in some sunshine, eat a freshly grilled burger and catch up with a few good friends on a casual afternoon. I love Tempe Diablo Stadium because it’s centrally located and because the views of the mountains from here really remind you why Arizona is such a beautiful place. And, if you want to skip the traffic after the game, take a quick drive up those mountains to Top of the Rock at the Phoenix Marriott Tempe at The Buttes. They have a terrific happy hour. Hiking. Now is the perfect time to dust off those hiking boots. Spring brings lots of color to the desert making a perfect backdrop for exercise. I love […]

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Things To Do During Spring Training Season

Papago Park Tempe
March 2, 2017

Every year, baseball fans travel to Tempe from all over the country to see Cactus League Spring Training baseball games. In between games, there are lots of fun things to do in Tempe during spring training season. From family activities to festivals to shopping and dining, there’s something to keep every fan entertained. This year’s Cactus League schedule, with games from February 24 – April 1, coincides with all kinds of things to do in Tempe for all ages. Visit to see game schedules, stadium maps and ticket information or call 800-283-6734. Happy hour after the game: I love Tempe Diablo Stadium because it’s centrally located and because the views of the mountains from here really remind you why Arizona is such a beautiful place. And, if you want to bypass the traffic after the game, take a quick drive up those mountains to Top of the Rock at the Phoenix Marriott Tempe at The Buttes. They have a terrific happy hour. Downtown Tempe: Tempe’s downtown is a natural gathering spots for baseball fans. Here, along tree-lined streets, you’ll find local shops, tempting restaurants and fun nightlife options. You can also hike up “A” Mountain, check out Tempe Town Lake and see public art. Visit the Downtown Tempe spring training page to learn about special offers for baseball fans, photo opportunities and other fun activities this spring. Tempe Marketplace: Shop, dine and listen to live music every Friday and Saturday evening at Tempe Marketplace. This is a fun spot to walk […]

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