A Glimpse into the Miracle on Congress Street

City sidewalks, busy sidewalks, dressed in holiday style

| Photography by Kristen Brockel

The holiday season looks a bit different this year, but that doesn't mean the cheer has to dim. Miracle on Congress St. introduced "Up On The Rooftop" to keep the holiday spirit alive with a visit from Santa and his reindeer. Drop your letters to Santa in the mailbox on the sidewalk, indulge in a free scoop of candy cane ice cream from HUB Ice Cream or cozy up with a holiday inspired cocktail from HUB Restaurant & Creamery, every Friday, Saturday and Sunday from December 4 to December 19.

A Day in Tombstone

Dust off your boots and saddle up, partner. We’re road tripping to the town too tough to die.

|By Amanda Oien

A saloon-lined dusty street and the sound of spinning spurs greet visitors to Tombstone, Arizona, a place known for its Wild West history.

In 1881, gunfire rang out near Fremont Street, which later became known as the famous O.K. Corral Gunfight with Wyatt, Virgil and Morgan Earp and Doc Holliday. In just 24 seconds, 30 shots were fired.

This gunfight would put Tombstone on the map; along with the American Old West’s famous outlaws and its historic buildings that still stand today, including the Bird Cage Theatre which was once known as the “wildest, wickedest night spot between Basin Street and the Barbary Coast” according to the New York Times.

Morning


Allen Street Shopping

Giddy up, y’all, we’re going shopping. Allen Street is the main street of Tombstone and is lined with vintage clothing, antique and souvenir shops. You can easily spend hours sifting through the past and present.

The Shady Lady’s Closet has everything from Western wear and accessories to 1880’s Victorian wear. If you’re looking for Native American jewelry, pottery, sandpaintings, fetishes, rugs, or artifacts visit one of Arlene’s three locations along Allen Street.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B1DFfkcBRvX/

Afternoon

Lunch

Don’t go hungry now, ya hear? Half-way down Allen Street, you’ll find Big Nose Kate’s Saloon, named after Mary Katherine Haroney, a Hungarian dance hall girl and woman of the night, who was Doc Holliday’s on and off girlfriend. She later became known as Big Nose Kate.

Hunker down for food, live country music, and beer served in a glass stein.

Pro Tip: If you want to dress up and take pictures, behind the bar, on their piano, or with a cowboy or saloon girl, you can do so for free.

Sight-seeing

The O.K. Corral gunfight is reenacted daily at 11a.m, 12p.m, 2p.m. and 3:30p.m.; each show lasts about 30 minutes. However, you’ll want to get your tickets at least 2 hours before showtime to secure a seat.

Be sure to check out all that the O.K. Corral has to offer, including the stables with buggies, the cowboy bunkhouse, and even a look at the hearse used to take unfortunate souls to their final resting place at Boothill Cemetery. 

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bknn-wzjV7L/

Make your way on over to the Tombstone Epitaph Newspaper Museum. Home to Arizona’s oldest newspaper, it’s still published today. Read the original 1881 reports of the gunfight at the O.K. Corral and find out how newspapers were printed back in the 1800’s.

Pro-Tip: Admission to the Epitaph is free

Built in 1882, the Tombstone Courthouse still stands today and is now considered a State Historic Park.  Learn about the miners, cattlemen, and pioneers of Tombstone and see replicas of the courtroom, sheriff offices, and the gallows where seven men were hanged.

Delve into the silver mining economy that kept Tombstone alive with a tour of the Goodenough Mine, dating back to 1878.

Evening

Before riding off into the sunset, stick around for one of Tombstone’s many ghost tours, including a walking tour of Tombstone or a haunted tour of the renowned Bird Cage Theatre, that has been said to be haunted by the spirits of prostitutes and cowboys.

Tombstone has many annual events centered around the town’s history. Take a gander before planning your next day trip to the town too tough to die.

Plan your Tombstone trip today

TG Eats: Roasted Squash with Agave Pantry

| By Amanda Oien
|Photography by Brielle Farmer
| Video by Amanda Oien, Brielle Farmer

Shazieh Gorji was born to an Iranian family in Pakistan and, after studying ceramics in Vermont and attending culinary and baking school in Tucson, Gorji decided to make the Old Pueblo her home in 2012. Six years later, Agave Pantry was born. 

Agave Pantry is a beautiful, rustic combination of Gorji’s expertise in cooking, baking and ceramics. Growing up in the East, Gorji had always used an array of spices. What started out as experiential creations for friends and family, Gorji soon began crafting blends of spices and salts to sell. 

“The spice blends add an element of ritual to people's lives and beauty on the table,” Gorji said. 

In addition to her spice and salt blends, Gorji bakes cookies, cakes and Italian macrons known as amarettis and hand-makes dipping bowls, espresso cups, spoons and even indigo-dyed  linens. 

Using her Cardamom Salt and Dukkah blend, Gorji created a colorfully festive roasted apple and squash recipe, perfect for fall and winter.

Roasted Spiced Butternut Squash with Maple Yogurt 

Ingredients

1 large, 2.5 lb butternut squash peeled, deseeded, and diced 1.5-2” 

2 green apples, Granny Smith, peeled and diced 1.5-2 “

2 tsp cardamom powder or 2.5 tsp. cardamom seeds, crushed in a mortar & pestle

1/8 tsp nutmeg

1/8 tsp. cinnamon

2.5-3  tbsp. olive oil  

1/4 tsp Agave Pantry cardamom salt plus additional 1/2tsp. or to taste

Cracked pepper

1/2 cup yogurt

1.5 tbsp Frontier Sugarworks smoked maple syrup

1 pomegrante, peeled and seeds separated into a bowl without pith

1 tbsp. Agave Pantry dukkah blend

Method

Preheat oven to 400 F convection and line a baking sheet with parchment paper. 

Whisk olive oil with spices, 1/4 tsp. Agave Pantry cardamom salt and a twist or three of freshly cracked black peppercorns. 

Toss cubed butternut squash with 1.5 tbsp of olive oil and spread it on the baking sheet and pop it into the oven. Set timer for 15 minutes. 

Toss the apples with remaining olive oil mixture and set aside. 

In the meantime, whisk yogurt with a spoon. Never with a fork. Why you ask? Who knows, but it's what I grew up being told, and do I really do what I’m told? Only when it comes to whisking yogurt with a spoon!

Whisk maple syrup into the yogurt and set it aside. I am drawn to using smoked maple syrup from Frontier Sugarworks in Maine; they also sell a Bourbon barrel aged variety, which though I have yet to try, gather would marry well with this dish. But use whatever maple syrup you have on hand, as long as it is real maple syrup. 

By now your timer should have started ringing and it's time to toss the butternut squash, add apples and give it another stir. 

Set timer for 15 more minutes and periodically check on it. A knife should pierce it without struggling to pull it back out. If the knife changes its shape and smashes it, it is most certainly overcooked but still edible. At this point, you may as well mash it into a rustic mashed roasted butternut squash and continue with the next steps.

Once ready, serve it on a platter or shallow bowl. Drizzle the maple yogurt over the roasted apples and squash, sprinkle remaining cardamom salt and dukkah and finish off with pomegranate arils. 

Serve warm.

Tucson Hiking Guide

The hills are alive with cactus, creosote, and mule deer. Go explore.

|By Laura Horley

Tucson is surrounded by mountain ranges—the Catalinas in the north, the Rincons in the east, the Tucsons in the west, and the Santa Ritas in the south. Each range offers its own special charm and an incredible selection of outdoor recreation opportunities. Here are a couple of our favorite hikes from each range.

The Catalina Mountains

Marshall Gulch and Wilderness of Rocks

Tucsonans know, when summer comes and your brain starts to melt, you need to leave the valley floor. There is no better, or faster, way to do this than with a quick trip up Mt. Lemmon in the Catalina Mountains. Right near the peak, you’ll find several trails worth exploring. Hike the Marshall Gulch loop, and find yourself creek-side, breathing in the sweet vanilla scent of Ponderosa Pine, and roaming through an Aspen grove. It’s the next best thing to teleporting to Colorado.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BI1LL9thXsD/

If you want a more meandering path, replete with cool rock formations, hidden swimming pools, and epic vistas, explore the Wilderness of Rocks Trail.

Romero Pools and Pusch Ridge

These are not summer hikes. They just aren’t! I mean, you do you. But if you do you in summer, bring a TON of water. Starting closer to the base of the mountains and wandering through Sonoran desert, these two hikes are a little (ok, sometimes a lot) steep and incredibly rewarding. If you want to bathe in beautiful pools as your reward, opt for Romero Pools in Catalina State Park. If you prefer something a little more treacherous with a crazy view at the end, drive a little further north to the Pusch Ridge trailhead and hike along this iconic formation. You’ll feel like an ant climbing over the back of a stegosaurous.

Tucson Mountains

Wasson Peak

Have you ever wanted to climb the highest peak in a mountain range? But do you also struggle to hit the trail before noon? This hike is for you. Wasson Peak is the highest peak in the Tucson Mountains, and the hike up it, while steep, is remarkably accessible for the feeling of accomplishment that it leads to. Switchbacks and gravelly trails are balanced by desert scenery and incredible views, and, at just about 7.5 miles round-trip, you can reach the summit within a few hours. 360 degree views of the city and Saguaro National Park await, and the way back is all downhill.

Yetman Trail

Less intense and yet no less beautiful than the hike up Wasson Peak (but you won’t get the views), the Yetman Trail is a favorite for families, dog owners, mountain bikers, trail runners, casual strollers, and a stunning array of desert wildlife including mule deer, lizards, and, if you’re really lucky, big horn sheep. This trail in the Tucson Mountains leads through saguaros, ocotillos, and palo verde to a stone house, built in the 1930s by the Bowen family. After taking a snack break in one of the windows, you can continue on past the house and further into the desert. If you do, you’ll eventually reach Starr Pass.

Rincon Mountains

Tanque Verde Falls

Tanque Verde Falls is popular for a reason. It’s an oasis of fresh water pools and waterfalls close to the city. It’s a dog-friendly, explore-at-your-own-pace kind of place, and it can be as much or as little of a hike as you want. You’ll hit water within the first quarter mile, and then it’s up to you if you want to keep going, or if you’d rather hole up in a shady spot on a smooth rock with a good book. If you do decide to venture all the way to the big falls, be careful. Some overly ambitious thrill seekers have faced serious injury or even death in their mighty waters.

Rincon Peak

This hike is no joke. It’s long (16 miles, give or take) and it’s steep, but it’s also unlike anything else you’ll find in the Tucson area. On this trail, typical Sonoran desert flora gives way to oaks, juniper, and grasslands. Make sure you start early in the day. After a steep ascent, you’ll be rewarded with 360 degree views from a very unique perch.

Santa Rita Mountains

Mt. Wrightson

This hike follows the Old Baldy Trail. It starts in Madera Canyon, at the base of the Santa Ritas, and takes you up to the mountain range’s highest peak. The terrain is decidedly different from what you’d typically find in the Sonoran desert, even before you start climbing higher in elevation. At about 10 miles round trip, this steep hike is more than a casual stroll, but it’s worth every step.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B4Vr45RAq_y/

Bog Springs

This loop trail will take you through some of the riparian lowlands of the Santa Ritas. Green grass, fresh springs, big trees, and uninterrupted views are guaranteed, and there’s a great chance that you’ll spot some birds and other wildlife. There’s a reason that this area is popular with birders. This hike is definitely less steep than hiking Wrightson, and is a great option any time of year, aside from summer, when it can be a bit hot.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BSO7RU0ABqy/