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Hometown Tourist: Get to Know Glendale! – The Arizona Beehive
Hometown Tourist

Hometown Tourist: Get to Know Glendale!

Hometown TouristOnce a quiet farming community that got its economic boom from agriculture and ready water, Glendale is now one of the Valley’s fastest-growing areas—and for good reason. Prime location and high entertainment value make it a standout among Phoenix suburbs.

Take a trip in time

Called the “crown jewel” of Glendale’s park system, the 17-acre Sahuaro Ranch Park was homesteaded in the 1880s. A number of original structures from ranching days still stand, including the adobe house, one of the state’s earliest, and the charming main house, outfitted with period antiques and open for tours in cooler months. Sahuaro Ranch’s rose garden and historic orchards make it a popular backdrop for weddings; wandering chickens and peacocks make it a popular play place for children. The other half of the park is dotted with ramadas, ballfields and playgrounds.

Get your game on

Glendale’s own University of Phoenix Stadium hosts major sporting events throughout the year, making the Westgate district a popular destination. Photo by Ken Lund / CC BY via flickr.

Glendale’s own University of Phoenix Stadium hosts major sporting events throughout the year, making the Westgate district a popular destination. Photo by Ken Lund / CC BY via flickr.

Glendale’s got game! Hockey aficionados know that the city has been home to the Arizona Coyotes since 1996, and football fans boast the multi-million dollar University of Phoenix Stadium, home base for the Arizona Cardinals and host to major sporting events such as the Fiesta Bowl, two Super Bowls, the Pro Bowl and the Copa América Centenario—it will also see the NCAA Final Four in 2017. If baseball is more your thing, the Los Angeles Dodgers and Chicago White Sox call Glendale home every year for spring training.

Find a festival

Glendale Glitter and Glow is one of many local festivals hosted by the city. The holiday celebration is always a popular draw. Photo by Sweet Evie / CC BY via flickr.

Glendale Glitter and Glow is one of many local festivals hosted by the city. The holiday celebration is always a popular draw. Photo by Sweet Evie / CC BY via flickr.

Glendale is also home to a number of signature festivals. Top among them is the month-long Glendale Glitters, a series of weekend holiday extravaganzas lit by 1.5 million lights. Children come to revel in the snow play area and petting zoo, and adults stay to shop for handcrafted gifts and sample local food. February gets a little sweeter in Glendale with the Chocolate Affaire, a gathering of all things chocolate presented by Glendale’s own Cerreta Candy Company. With delicacies like deep-fried chocolate-covered bacon and traditional faves like chocolate-dipped strawberries, you can’t go wrong.

Take flight

Glendale’s friendly skies have made it something of a West Valley aviation hub. Luke Air Force Base has been a fixture since 1940, and it’s not uncommon to see people parked on the side of empty fields during training to hear the roar of the afterburner and watch jets take off and land. But Glendale is also a mecca for civilian aviation—the Glendale Municipal Airport fields air traffic big and small in the area. If you’re looking to get your wings, look no further than Arizona Flight Training Center, Aerosim Aviation or Angel Aviation to help get you in the cockpit.

Be amused

Westgate Entertainment District, anchored by two stadiums and a nearby outlet center, offers world-class fun. With its water features, movie theatre and several restaurants, there’s something for everyone. The addition of As You Wish Pottery Painting Place and Dave & Buster’s make it a go-to destination on its own, let alone as a dinner stopover on the way to a game. Come on weekends for live local music and feel the vibe of the “Times Square of the West”!

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