Traci Baker, Director of Community Activities & Communications
* Nov. 12: Free Spirit’s Annual Multi-Tour Presentation
Each year, Free Spirit presents “Around the Corner to Around the World,” an informative program where several travel professionals do a short presentation on their areas. We will be doing it virtually this year, Nov. 12 at 3 p.m. Some of the trips to be discussed are Verde Canyon Railroad, Laughlin, Copper Canyon, Las Vegas, Navajo, Rocky Point, and more. It will be about an hour and door prizes will be awarded. Call the Activities Office at 623-535-9854 to RSVP and get the link.
* Dec. 10: A Closer Look Tours Copper Canyon (more details are forthcoming)
Go “dashing through the desert” and “caroling through the canyons” this holiday season. This year will look a little different than previous years, and we are not really sure what it will look like, but we are hopeful and optimistic. We are especially excited about two new drive-through light displays that will definitely be happening. Refer to the asterisked entries below. Big buses are not permitted, so we will be taking a Mercedes Sprinter. This means capacity is limited to 12 guests per date, so book early!
* Desert Botanical Gardens & Mill Ave Fair, Dec. 4, 2020
Visit the Tempe Festival of the Arts, one of the top 100 classic and contemporary craft shows in the nation. Then enjoy a magical night, as the Desert Botanical Garden comes to life with the soft glow from more than 8,000 hand-lit luminaria bags, thousands of lights, and entertainment throughout. Price: $105 per person.
* Prescott Christmas Parade and Lights, Dec. 5, 2020
Travel to “Arizona’s Christmas City,” Prescott, and watch a legendary parade complete with floats and marching bands. Parade seating and lunch is included. We will also stay for the lighting of the courthouse. A warm hospitality room will be provided between the end of the parade and the lighting of the courthouse square. Drive through the light display in Prescott Valley on the way home. Price: $115 per person.
* Verde Canyon Magical Christmas Journey, Dec. 11, 2020
Travel aboard Verde Canyon Railroad to the “North Pole,” making a couple of slow passes by the delightful and funny buildings, acrobatic elves, and Santa and Mrs. Claus. First class seating is included, along with access to the open-air viewing cars for a better view of the fantastic decorations and illuminated buildings: Reindeer Flight School, Mrs. Claus’ Bakery, Elf Training Center, Naughty Kid’s Coal Mine, and the Ugly Sweater Factory. Price: $139 per person.
* Zoo Lights Drive Through and Dinner, Dec. 14, 2020
For the first time in the history of the Phoenix Zoo, experience millions of twinkling lights and dazzling animal sculptures from the comfort of your own vehicle. Tour the Africa Trail and see the all new Wildlife Lantern Safari, featuring 66 animals: polar bears, mammoths, koalas, kangaroos, and more! Includes dinner at Buca de Beppo’s. Price: $115 per person.
* World of Illumination and Dinner, Dec. 17, 2020
Discover a symphony of sight and sound at the world’s largest drive-through holiday light spectacular. Featuring more than two-million LED lights animated and synchronized to the tunes of holiday classics, World of Illumination is the must-see family event of the season. Also included is a delicious dinner at Rustler’s Roost. Price: $125 per person.
* New Year’s Eve at Historic La Posada, Dec. 31, 2020 to Jan. 1, 2021
La Posada in Winslow, Ariz. will be the site for this exclusive New Year’s celebration. In the tradition of architect and visionary Mary Colter, La Posada continues to inspire many renowned artists to create magnificent and memorable works. Dinner and New Year’s Eve celebration will be at the world-famous Turquoise Room, a fine and unique restaurant, providing a mesmerizing interpretation of Arizona food. Other Arizona treasures, including the Petrified Forest, Painted Desert, and Meteor Crater, are also part of this mini-getaway. Price: $425 pp/double, $495 pp/single.
Travel: Local and Regional
For 25 years, our travel partner Free Spirit Vacations has offered quality regional motor coach vacations. Now, more than ever, this type of travel is front and center. Free Spirit is pleased to take this a step further to include, whenever possible, locally owned small businesses in the tour itineraries. The following are some great local tours available in Oct. and Nov. to book through the Activities Office 623-535-9854. We can email you a flyer, or you can let us know you are stopping by, and we can hand you a flyer as well.
* Frank Lloyd Wright Taliesin West & Lunch, Nov. 12, 2020
Taliesin West is a National Historic Landmark nestled in the desert foothills of the McDowell Mountains in Scottsdale, Ariz. It is also the home of the Frank Lloyd Wright Foundation and the School of Architecture at Taliesin. Lunch is included. Price: $135 per person.
* Verde Valley Overnight, Nov. 13 to 14, 2020
Highlights of this overnight getaway include first class seating on the Verde Canyon Railroad, dinner at the Blazin’ M Ranch, and the Copper Art Museum. Overnight is at the Best Western Cottonwood Inn. Price: $360 pp/double; $415 pp/single.
* Utah Mighty 5 from Phoenix departs first Sunday of every month
Join us for a seven-day adventure through Arches, Bryce Canyon, Canyonlands, Capitol Reef, and Zion National Parks. These magnificent parks are known as the Utah Mighty 5. Each park will enable you to see unique geological formations all within the region of Southern Utah. It will be a week you won’t soon forget! Price: $1,899 pp/double, $2,249 pp/single.
Call the Activities Office at 623-535-9854 for more details on any of these amazing opportunities and to register.