Jerry Peek's Tucson Page

I live in Tucson, Arizona -- a wonderful city in the desert in the southwestern USA, with mountains all around, an hour away from Mexico.

This page has links that I use every day (for weather info, entertainment, etc) and other info that visitors might want. I update it as I think of pages I want to keep track of; please feel free to send me suggestions.

When you click on a link, a new window (or tab) should open; when you close it, this window should still be here.

You can scroll down or skip to one of the sections:
News
Weather, etc.
Transportation
Things I Like to Do
Places I Like to Eat (and buy)
Visitor Info, Other Pages of Local Links
Photos
You Know You're from Southern Arizona When... :)

Tucson Mountain Park
Tucson Mountain Park
Here are more Tucson photos.

News

saguaro cactus icon [Jump to top]

Weather, etc.

saguaro cactus icon
  • Forecast and recent conditions Though the temperature readings lag behind, the site has links to frequently-updated info if needed -- with predictions of exactly when a storm will reach what part of the area, etc. There's also a Tucson-area page with maps and other area forecasts, and a three-day history page with graphs and tables of recent weather. (National Weather Service, Tucson office)
  • Tabular Forecast has hour-by-hour predictions (which can be handy for guessing when it'll be too humid for your swamp cooler to work)
  • Current conditions Temperature, humidity, wind, etc. updated every five minutes. (University of Arizona)
  • Forecast (The Weather Channel)
  • Climate charts (Ersys)
  • Sunrise/sunset times, current time, and more. When can you catch a beautiful Tucson sunset, or get out for an early-morning hike before it's too hot? We don't observe daylight saving (summer) time here. (time and date.com)
[Jump to top]

Transportation

saguaro cactus icon
  • TransView: Traffic problems, traffic cameras, construction updates, ...
  • There's updated road condition info online at www.az511.gov. Construction projects in Pima County are listed at www.roadprojects.pima.gov. Get current county road conditions by calling (520)547-7510.
  • Tucson bicycle travel info and map (Pima Association of Governments)
  • SunTran city buses
  • Sun Shuttle (Pima County rural buses)
  • Airport shuttles: Tucson airport (Arizona Stagecoach), Tucson Airport (Sun-Tran Route 11), Phoenix airport (Arizona Shuttle).
  • Tucson road quirks include:
    • HAWKs, PELICANs, and TOUCANs: Tucson traffic engineers dreamed up these pedestrian and bicycle crossings that you'll see around town.
    • Stravenues are roads on a diagonal, like the railroad tracks and Davis-Monthan AFB, both of which cut southern Tucson at an angle and make driving crazy.
    • Watch out for roads that run along both sides of a wash (drainage ditch). Usually each side of the road is two-way traffic!
    Gotta love this town...
[Jump to top]

Things I Like to Do

saguaro cactus icon

There's more general info in the Local Links pages below.

  • Tucson Friends of Traditional Music have dances and concerts.
  • UA for You: performances, museums, athletics, etc. at the University of Arizona
  • Invisible Theatre: Great performances from a long-established small theatre.
  • Southern Arizona Symphony Orchestra: Great performances — in two venues, Tucson and Saddlebrooke — from a long-established (and excellent!) local orchestra.
  • Ocotillo Poetry Slam: Performance Poetry, very different from traditional poetry readings. The PSi FAQ page describes a slam. A shorter version from Mickey Randelman, one of the Tucson organizers: “This is not your English professor's poetry reading — or, if it is, your English professor seriously rocks.”
  • Tucson Museum of Art
  • University of Arizona Museum of Art
  • Center for Creative Photography
  • TucsonArt.info: a site I'm developing to list Tucson artists and public art. Along the right-hand side of each page are links to other art sites.
  • Southern Arizona Adventure Company: lots of events organized by hundreds of members: fun, casual, and free
  • Grand Cinemas: A local chain of budget cinemas that show popular movies a few months after they were first released. For three bucks (less for seniors and on Tuesdays), you can get out of the heat and see a film in a nice theatre.
  • Ben's Bells: hundreds of Tucsonans make thousands of Bells and distribute them randomly around town to encourage kindness.
  • Pima County Public Library: search the collections, reserve or renew a book, find free Wi-Fi locations, ...
  • Poco and Mom's has real New Mexican food (which is different than the Sonoran-style food at most "Mexican" restaurants here in Tucson).
  • Waila, also called chicken scratch (says the Wikipedia article there), is from the Tohono O'odham people — who live (mostly) southwest of Tucson. It's fun dance music: usually accordion, guitar, bass, drums and sax.
Outdoors Outside Tucson
  • The Tohono O'odham Nation Cultural Center and Museum is 10 miles south of Sells, Arizona (75 miles sourhwest of Tucson on Ajo Way, AZ highway 86). It's hard to find, in a remote area with almost no signs to guide you there... but it's worth the trip! A handsome new building that opened in 2007, it has exhibits on the Tohono O'odham people and art, a gift shop, temporary exhibitions and presentations, and more. There are photos on the Kelly, Wright & Associates web page. The Tucson Citizen article about its opening has a map (click on the map to enlarge).
  • The Amerind Foundation has a museum of anthropology, archaeology and art east of Tucson. It's located near Dragoon, the spectacular Texas Canyon along I-10, with picnic tables among the big rocks.
  • The Arizona Wine Growers Association website lists vineyards being developed as well as ones already there. Arizona has some great wineries, like Callaghan Vineyards and Dos Cabezas -- both in the Sonoita area.
  • An exposé on The Thing (warning: has spoiler!), the tourist attraction on I-10 southeast of Tucson
  • Linda Ronstadt’s Borderland is a New York Times travel article (December 29, 2013, by Lawrence Downes) with stories from the Tucsonan singer's life and places special to her. The Reader Comments (at tne end) are glowing.
[Jump to top]

Places I Like to Eat (and Buy Food)

saguaro cactus icon

My tastes are all over the map. I tend toward vegetarian food, but I love a great Sonoran Hot Dog (from one of the many food carts, of course!) or a Smashburger. I’m not (usually) concerned if a place is run by some “religion” or other group that has a particular point of view… though, in each case, I'll mention it if I know about it.

Here's a list that I'll build over time.

  • Govinda’s Natural Foods Buffet [TripAdvisor.com] [GovindasOfTucson.com]: Part of a worldwide chain of vegetarian restaurants run (according to this Wikipedia article, by the International Society for Krishna Consciousness, a.k.a. Hare Krishnas), this place serves a delicious buffet of vegetarian (many vegan) foods. (When I worked in Prague, Czech Republic, during grad school, I was saved from the Czech’s typical heavy meats and gravies by a nearby Govinda's.)

    Get there early for the best selection. Open Thanksgiving and Christmas, too. (At Thanksgiving, the Tucson location — at least — has a live turkey running around the grounds, posing for photos… and gladly accepting handouts of diners' vegetarian feasts :).

    • Location: 711 E Blacklidge (just off 1st Ave. between Ft. Lowell & Glenn)
    • Hours: Check their website (above) or call (520)792-0630.
[Jump to top]

Visitor Info, Other Pages of Local Links

saguaro cactus icon [Jump to top]

Photos

saguaro cactus icon [Jump to top]

You Know You're from Southern Arizona When... :)

saguaro cactus icon

(This is from one of those email messages that circulates around the 'Net. I wish I knew who wrote it.)

You Know You're from Southern Arizona When...

  1. You buy salsa by the gallon.
  2. You think a red light is merely a suggestion.
  3. All of your out-of-state friends start to visit after October but clear out come the end of April.
  4. Most of the restaurants in town have the first name "El" or "Los."
  5. You think 60 tons of crushed rock makes a beautiful yard.
  6. You notice your car overheating before you drive it.
  7. You can say "Hohokam" and people don't think you're laughing funny.
  8. You no longer associate bridges (or rivers) with water.
  9. You know a swamp cooler is not a happy hour drink.
  10. Vehicles with open windows have the right-of-way in the summer.
  11. People break out coats when the temperature drops below 70 degrees.
  12. You discover, in July, it only takes two fingers to drive your car.
  13. The pool can be warmer than you are.
  14. You can make sun tea instantly.
  15. You run your air conditioner in the middle of winter so you can use your fireplace.
  16. The best parking place is determined by shade instead of distance.
  17. The AC is on your list of best friends.
  18. You realize that Valley Fever isn't a disco dance.
  19. You can finish a Big Gulp in 10 minutes and go back for seconds.
  20. The water from the cold water tap is the same temperature as the hot one.
  21. You can correctly pronounce the words: Saguaro, Ocotillo, Tempe, Gila Bend, San Xavier, Canyon de Chelly, Mogollon Rim, Cholla, and Ajo.
  22. You experience third degree burns if you touch any metal part of your car.
  23. You know better than to get into a car with leather seats if you're wearing shorts.
[Jump to top]


CatScratch Graphics icon Thanks to long-time Tucson resident Lannie Hartman for many helpful suggestions. CatScratch Graphics (which is offline now) made the cactus icons on this page. The CSG icon was reduced by GifOptimizer (also not online anymore).
[Home page]

Last change: 3 January 2014

Contact Jerry Peek