What can I do with my 70 year-old Aunt in or around Phoenix in April?
March 1, 2020 7:11 PM   Subscribe

My Aunt's lived in Phoenix for the past few decades. She's mentally sharp and mobile. So am I! Last year we visited Taliesin West and enjoyed it. What do you recommend for this year? How can we best get us some culture?
posted by boghead to Travel & Transportation around Phoenix, AZ (11 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
I'm assuming she's been to Santa Fe? If not I was really impressed by the art galleries there, and I go to a LOT of galleries and shows. There are also interesting and historic buildings to tour and local silversmiths selling their hand made jewelry downtown. Definitely the most I've learned on a trip to a US city about history, culture and contemporary and modernist local art, that's for sure. Food was awesome too.
posted by fshgrl at 7:31 PM on March 1, 2020

The Biltmore offers tours, I went ladt spring and thought it was really interesting.
Scottsdale Center for the Arts brings in all kinds of great shows.
Check out Local First events, they have trips, lectures and other activities.
There might be architectural tours in the historic districts of Phoenix in April.
ASU has many evening lectures and events many are to the public and are often free.
posted by jennstra at 8:10 PM on March 1, 2020

Santa Fe is lovely, but it's about an 8 hour drive from Phoenix. If you want to do a road trip, Sedona, Jerome, and Arcosanti are much closer. In town, I recommend the Musical Instrument Museum (it's very interactive and great for all ages), the Heard Museum, and the Desert Botanical Garden.
posted by kbar1 at 8:28 PM on March 1, 2020 [5 favorites]

I recommend the Musical Instrument Museum as well. Totally not my thing but I LOVED IT.
posted by Sassyfras at 8:40 PM on March 1, 2020 [3 favorites]

Seconding the Musical Instrument Museum. Adding the Museum of the West in Scottsdale.
posted by jennstra at 9:15 PM on March 1, 2020 [1 favorite]

Not "culture" but if the two of you have an interest in animals, the Out of Africa Wildlife Park can be a fun way to spend an afternoon.
posted by metadave at 9:20 PM on March 1, 2020

For an hour or so before/after the Musical Instrument Museum, check out Cosanti. You don’t need to spend a ton of time there, but it’s pretty neat to see the artisans and craftspeople doing their thing. Note that it may not be fully accessible (some uneven surfaces/stairs)

posted by nathaole at 9:21 PM on March 1, 2020

The desert botanical garden is nice if it is not too hot yet.
posted by mermayd at 5:54 AM on March 2, 2020

Came to say the Musical Instrument Museum as well.
posted by Lutoslawski at 7:34 AM on March 2, 2020 [1 favorite]

My suggestion (in addition to the botanical garden and Heard Museum above) would be First Friday Art Walk, downtown Phoenix. Lots of artists and artisans, as well as music and food. It's lively and fun, and a good mix of ages. There are trolleys as well. More about it here.

Not sure this is either culture or up your street, but some older relatives of mine did enjoy the Goldfield Ghost town - a wild west tourist trap with a raucous saloon where the locals hang out.

In the same neighborhood is the Superstition Mountain Museum with the Lost Dutchman exhibit and the Elvis Memorial Chapel... Hard to resist.
posted by Rabarberofficer at 10:02 AM on March 2, 2020 [1 favorite]

I agree with other posters who recommend the Desert Botanical Garden. I also want to recommend their onsite restaurant, Gertrude's which is a nice spot for lunch or dinner (you can even dine outdoors). Also, the Desert Belle narration cruise of Saguaro Lake is a fun way to see and learn about the desert from a beautiful lake. And on the drive out to Saguaro Lake you may even encounter some wild horses near the Salt River. And for some light hiking, I recommend the Blevins Trail at Usery Mountain Park.
posted by shw at 2:46 PM on March 2, 2020 [2 favorites]

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