Tag: Weird Arizona

As Arizona celebrates its 100th year of statehood this month, The Arizona Republic has chosen to mark the occasion by choosing Weird Arizona as its book of the month for February!

The 14th officially marks the Copper State's centennial, and I am honored to have one of my books mentioned in conjunction with the celebration. As the Republic explains, "with all the official observations and speeches, we thought it might be good to remember it isn't all solemnity and that Arizona's weirdness goes way back."

Please take a moment to read Richard Nilsen's terrific review.

A big thanks to all the Phoenix residents who stopped by to chat with me and grab a personalized copy of Weird Arizona on Saturday. I had a great time meeting everyone and hearing about your adventures.

Now, for those of you waiting to hear about the Prescott and Tucson dates, I've finally gotten confirmation. They are as follows:

Saturday, January 23
11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Costco at 3911 Highway 69

Sunday, January 24
11 a.m. to 2 p.m.
Costco at 6255 E. Grant Road

By the way, I'm told that if you don't have a Costco member's card, you can ask for a day pass.

Weird Arizona fans! I'm current in West Texas on my way to the Grand Canyon State to attend book signings for your favorite travel compendium!

I'll be in Phoenix on Saturday the 16th (that's this Saturday!) at Costco from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. The address is 2450 E. Beardsley Road.

I will also be at Costco stores in Prescott and Tucson the following weekend, Saturday and Sunday, the 23rd and 24th, but which one occurs on which date has yet to be determined, so I'll let you know as soon as I do.

See you there!

The Arizona Daily Star is currently running their own version of Jeopardy over at azstarnet.com. They're calling it "Old Pueblo Jeopardy" and will be asking readers various questions about Arizona.

The winner will receive a copy of Weird Arizona, by yours truly, as well as some other coffee-table trivia books.

The deadline is 9 a.m. this Thursday, so head on over and enter for your chance to win!

Today's Arizona Daily Star has printed in their Accent section a great piece on Weird Arizona.

I had the pleasure of being interviewed by Valerie Vinyard last week on my travels to the Grand Canyon State and all the unusual stuff I saw out there. Naturally, being a Tucson-based paper, the Star was mostly interested in hearing about stuff in the "Old Pueblo," like Diamondback Bridge, the 280-foot rattlesnake spanning East Broadway; the Garden of Gethsemane, a decades-old park where you can lunch with Jesus; and El Tiradito, a shrine built in memoriam to an adulterer axed to death by the husband of his lover.

As mentioned in the article, the Tucson area tended to suck me in on my trips out west, but one can include only so much from one region when covering an entire state. One might infer from the article that I believe there are only six weird things in Tucson, but I'm certainly aware of many more; as a bonus for those of you who've followed the article here to the Roadside Resort, here's a list of several other sites in and around Tucson you might want to pay a visit:

... Continued

You ever talk so much, your face gets tingly? You know, like a nice little facial buzz? Well, I don't know if it's all the talking I did over the last half hour or if it's the three cups of coffee I downed at 6:00 a.m. to wake myself up, but I've got that prickle in my cheeks like I've been making out with someone for the last 20 minutes and I've just come up for air.

Unfortunately, nothing could be further from the truth. But I'm not all that disappointed. Fact is, I just got off the phone, having completed my first official interview for Weird Arizona! The promotion frenzy has begun.

And I'm happy to say that it's off to a good start. Had a nice long chat with Charles Goyette on Phoenix's KFNX, entertaining the capital's morning commuters with tales of ghosts, yoofos and roadside attractions. ... Continued

Sad news today. I was just informed that the publisher will not be sending me to the Grand Canyon State for the release of Weird Arizona.

To be honest, I never assumed they would, but I was hoping they might, at least for a few signings in the major cities. I was looking forward to the possibility of a fourth trip through the state so I could hit a few of the things I was unable to see on my previous drives, and then I could write about them for the Roadside Resort. Unfortunately, that won't happen, at least for the foreseeable future.

What's more, I won't be able to drop into Wickenburg to pick up a tiki like I'd planned.

The end is in sight! I finished out the Personalized Properties chapter today, and I don't think I could've chosen a better attraction to end it with. Gus Brethauer's Somewhere Over the Rainbow has to be among the top five most fascinating sights I encountered in Arizona. Here's a taste of my description:

Somewhere Over the Rainbow has everything under the sun. To its creator and curator, Gus Brethauer, nothing isn't worth saving. He's got rocks of every kind, some on prominent display, some in piles. He's got artifacts salvaged from ill-fated buildings. He has what he claims to be the world's largest collection of petrified wood. There are also dinosaurs, UFOs, tuberculosis shacks and hieroglyphs. And it's all lined up for thorough perusal.

... Continued

A large part of me wishes I could finish this book already. I'm currently 6 weeks behind schedule and I have two chapters left to complete. I've been working on this thing for a year and a half and it feels like it will never end. The traveling is one thing, but this sitting in a chair and writing several months straight takes its toll.

But another part of me wishes I could keep working on it. I'm still discovering attractions I didn't know about and I feel bad that I can't add them to the outline at this point. Not long ago, I found out about a race of lizard people that allegedly lives beneath the Superstition Mountains. I also recently learned of Charles Schmid Jr., "the Pied Piper of Tucson," an Eddie Munster-looking seducer of women who killed three girls, including his sister, and garnered a teen following by bragging about it.

And, just today, I found out about a guy named Richard Wizardry, master of "pyrophonics." He's built a collection of junk sculptures that shoot fire from their genitals as he pounds out chords on his flame organ. (There's a joke about flame organs here somewhere, but I just can't seem to find it right now.) ... Continued