Arizona's West Valley
It is the place where the sun sets and nights begin. It is wild and at the same time full of an undeniable allure that begs for discovery and adventure.
It is opportunity surrounded by breathtaking views and horizons. And it is also a place established on the ideals of perfection in hospitality.
Welcome to Arizona’s new West—a region ripe with sweeping vistas, traditional charm and romantic tales of chivalry as well as the cosmopolitan and chic touches of the urban modern world. It is more than a perfect blend of the old and the new, the wild and the tame, the luxurious and the rustic. Arizona’s West Valley is, without question, a little bit of everything. Come see how we can be everything to you!
Avondale - Avondale.org
Avondale is a vibrant city, and premier destination for NASCAR racing, education, arts, wildlife watching, festivals, shopping, dining, recreation and family living. Its convenient location puts Avondale at the heart of it all! Avondale is nestled at the base of the scenic Sierra Estrella Mountains where the Agua Fria and Gila Rivers meet, yet right off of Interstate 10 – Avondale is just 15 minutes from metro Phoenix, in the heart of the West Valley. With over 76,000 residents, Avondale’s population is expected to top off at 123,000 by 2020. An array of shopping, restaurants, fine hotels and other commercial ventures have developed in the last few years. Planning is now underway for the Avondale City Center, a corridor along Avondale Boulevard envisioned as the premier destination for the West Valley.
This area will showcase shopping, restaurants and entertainment, with exciting mixed use developments to include hotels, higher quality-higher density housing and professional office space, thus creating a pedestrian-friendly atmosphere conducive to both daytime and night-time activities. Opportunities to excel in education are boundless – home to Estrella Mountain Community College, Northern Arizona University State Distance Learning, Rio Salado College @ Avondale and Universal Technical Institute, Avondale is only minutes away from ASU’s Downtown and West campuses, as well as Midwestern University and the University of Phoenix. Avondale offers local and regional events, including soccer tournaments at Friendship and Festival Fields Parks, plenty of tee times at Coldwater Golf Club, and will soon feature Arizona’s largest indoor sports court complex, American Sports Centers – Avondale, for hosting basketball, soccer, volleyball and more!
For nature lovers, Avondale offers wildlife viewing, hiking, biking and trail running opportunities on the developing Tres Rios Recreation Corridor and Maricopa County’s Estrella
Mountain Regional Park, which is located at the base of the Sierra Estrella Mountains. Hundreds of thousands of visitors come to Avondale yearly to experience all types of national sporting events. Home to Phoenix International Raceway (PIR) and host to two NASCAR races annually, Avondale is also less than five miles away from the Arizona Cardinals’ University of Phoenix Stadium and the Phoenix Coyotes NHL hockey team’s Gila River Arena. And baseball lovers will find themselves just minutes away from local spring training baseball facilities – seasonal home to the Chicago White Sox, Los Angeles Dodgers, Cleveland Indians and Cincinnati Reds. Be in the heart of it all – come out to Avondale!
Buckeye - Buckeyeaz.gov
Founded in 1888 as a 440-acre town, Buckeye has currently grown to 660 square miles with over 30 master-planned communities in some stage of development. Buckeye offers more than homes, however. Retail centers have sprung up in recent months, with new restaurants, shopping and office space. The beautiful new three stories Town Hall building began business in July 2009, and renovation is almost complete on the 1910 Ware Building downtown. Heritage Park, with restoration of the gin and the addition of other features including a working “mini” gin, and an amphitheater, will be one of the designated sites of the Arizona Centennial in 2012. Though intersected by five highways, home to a general aviation airport and served by the railroad, Buckeye still remains one of Arizona’s biggest “small towns.” Nature surrounds in all directions, be it the majestic peaks of the White Tank Mountains to the north or the subtle rolls of Buckeye Hills, with the Mountains providing almost 30,000 acres perfect for hiking, mountain biking and trail rides. Bird watchers will delight at the Arlington and Robbins Butte Wildlife areas, and trails through the Buckeye Hills offer even more glimpses of native desert animals. The Buckeye Hills Shooting Range opened last spring to great reviews! Icons of the town have been carefully preserved along our main street, Monroe Avenue. Remnants of historic Route 80, the southern sister of the famed Route 66, and once the only all-weather all-year route to California, remain intact.
The most notable icon is the playful giant, Hobo Joe, a colorful symbol of a past Valley restaurant chain. Today, Millstone Café offers the best biscuits and gravy, along with specialty coffee, original salads and fantastic flatbread sandwiches. La Placita’s beautiful “great room” with its wood and stone décor and flat screen televisions, serves up delicious Mexican specialties and the best burger in town. Memphis Best BBQ is indeed “the best BBQ” in the nation! Slabs of ribs, sandwiches and individual dinners, slow smoked meat with or without the BBQ sauce and your choice of sides. YUM! All these restaurants are family owned and operated, serving home cooked goodness with friendly service that makes everyone feel like a local! From local pizza downtown, and a great choice of chain eateries north near the I-10 - everyone will be satisfied! Buckeye Town Park is currently home to the Buckeye Historical and Archeological Museum, which will be moved into the 30,000 feet of space at Heritage Park in the future. The Museum features an impressive collection of artifacts of the Hohokam and Anasazi tribes, early inhabitants of the valley. Town Park is also home to the Buckeye Aquatic Center, volleyball pits, ball fields, picnic tables and Skate Park. Buckeye Municipal Airport offers hangars, gyroplane rides, skydiving lessons and flight instruction, as well as 24-hour aviation fuel capability, ensuring a perfect view from above.
Stop in the Chamber of Commerce office to pick up maps and brochures on Buckeye as well as the rest of Arizona and request a copy of the new Historic Downtown Buckeye Driving Tour! Visitors will enjoy the many local events taking place throughout the year, including; the Helzapoppin’ PRCA Rodeo, Miss Helzapoppin’ PRCA Rodeo Queen Pageant, both in conjunction with Buckeye’s Pioneer Days with a parade and pancake breakfast in March. The Spring Demolition Derby in May; the West Valley Air Fair in April; “Swing & Sweat” Golf Tournament in August; Heritage Days in October; The Home Town Holiday Boutique, Car Show and Fall Demolition Derby in November; and Glow on Monroe, the ever popular Electric Light Parade and visits with Santa in December. Something is always “a poppin’ in Buckeye!”
Find out more about what Buckeye has to offer with the Buckeye Main Street Coalition.
El Mirage - CityofElMirage.gov
Welcome to El Mirage! The gateway to the Northwest Valley. Located in the heart of the rapidly growing West Valley, the community has grown from a small town dependent on agriculture to a diverse urban economy. El Mirage is just minutes away from several professional sports venues, some of the best golf courses in the Valley and high-end
retail outlets. El Mirage boasts two community parks. The new 13-acre Gateway Park recently opened just south of Peoria Avenue and El Mirage Road. Visitors and residents can enjoy ramadas, a shaded playground and tot lot, a skate plaza (the first in Arizona), two baseball/softball fields with lights, three multi-purpose fields, two lighted basketball courts, a splash park, an amphitheater, a 1/2 –mile walk/jog path, a dog park, drinking fountains, concession/retail store, and family restrooms. Bill Gentry Park is approximately two acres and is located at the intersection of Thunderbird Road and El Mirage Road. It offers a youth ball field, basketball court, playground and workout stations.
El Mirage has a well-deserved reputation as a modern, business driven suburb northwest of Phoenix with the ability to attract new residents and companies in a very competitive economic development environment. Over the last several years, the city’s goal has been to create a community that provides its residents the opportunity to purchase any good or service without having to leave the city limits. More than 40,000 people call El Mirage home, a testament to their belief in the community and an increase of nearly 400 percent from five years ago. In fact, El Mirage is the fastest-growing community in Arizona. Whether you are looking for your first home or a million dollar estate on an acre lot, El Mirage has it all. Lawyers, doctors, teachers and nurses all call El Mirage home. And the city is home to a nationally recognized retirement community, the Pueblo El Mirage Golf Resort.
Strategic planning for the future is constantly underway. The City is committed to aggressively improving infrastructure the best services and programs to residents and businesses. The city is carefully growing and planning ways to utilize and support the development of a commerce center and a downtown commuter rail station. This development, coupled with the growth along the Olive Avenue corridor, will support the community of El Mirage now and in the future.
Goodyear - GoodyearAZ.com
This All-America City celebrates the All- American pastimes of baseball and golf in a community of unsurpassed quality. Goodyear, Arizona, recently honored with both the prestigious All-America City designation and the esteemed Most Livable City Award, constantly strives to distinguish itself. As the fourth fastest growing suburban city in the country between 2000 and 2006, Goodyear’s desert vistas, majestic mountains, master-planned communities with lakes, country clubs, golf courses, and active outdoor lifestyle have already attracted more than 66,000 people from all over the country. Planned from the beginning with “unsurpassed quality” in mind, this dynamic and progressive city is definitely generating a “buzz” in the hospitality, housing and retail industries. Make your reservations for Goodyear’s 2010 Spring Training season when both major league teams from the Buckeye state – the Cleveland Indians and the Cincinnati Reds – play at the new state-of the- art Goodyear Ballpark. Baseball excitement definitely doubles in 2010 when the Cincinnati Reds expand the Cactus League and make it a full Ohio contingent in Goodyear. Thanks to its location on the coast to- coast Interstate 10, just 17 miles west of downtown Phoenix, Goodyear is already home to nine national chain hotels with plans for several more. Nestled in the shadow of the majestic Sierra Estrella Mountains, 39 miles of hiking, mountain biking and horseback riding trails in the 20,000- acre Estrella Mountain Regional Park make Goodyear a mecca for both leisurely and stimulating activities.
With such spectacular mountain surroundings, it’s not surprising that Goodyear plays host to some of the state’s most challenging and dramatic golf courses. The Golf Club at Estrella provides breathtaking views on this rolling desert course with multiple elevation changes. In sharp contrast are the green gently rolling fairways of Estrella Mountain Park, Palm Valley, and Pebble Creek’s Tuscany Falls and Eagle’s Nest courses. To top off the golf experience, the lush, mature greenery of the three championship courses at the nearby Wigwam Resort and Spa beckon any golfer looking for a challenge. Design is underway for Phase I of a livable, walkable downtown destined to become a bustling, lively area. This future “heart and soul” of Goodyear is planned for a 2011 debut. Adding to downtown’s vitality will be hundreds of college students. Thanks to Goodyear’s recent pursuit of postsecondary educational institutions, Franklin Pierce University will build a campus on city-owned land adjacent to Goodyear’s downtown. Other colleges, including ASU, are currently working with Franklin Pierce on the idea of building a “consortium of college” in Goodyear. Already known as the “Retail Center of the Southwest Valley,” approximately four million more square feet of retail are planned for Goodyear in the next few years. The dynamic 1.0-million-square-foot Canyon Trails Towne Center opened recently. A 1.2-million-square-foot Estrella Falls super regional mall will eventually be the centerpiece of all this dining and shopping activity when it debuts. However, due to the downturn in the economy, construction of the mall has been delayed. But when it opens, the mall’s lifestyle concept will be cutting edge in shopping center design across the country.
A new ballpark and Spring Training experience, great golf, numerous hotels, scenic mountains, a thriving retail market, fabulous housing developments, and great outdoor amenities – it’s all here! Check out the Visitors Section of Goodyear’s website – goodyearaz.gov – for all there is to see and do in the area and to view interactive maps of up-to-date Goodyear dining and hotel guides. But don’t stop there – come see for yourself!
Litchfield Park - Litchfield-Park.org
A many faceted jewel in the Southwest Valley, the City of Litchfield Park has been named by Phoenix Magazine as one of the “10 Best Places to Live in Arizona”. A beautiful city of approximately 5,000 residents, Litchfield Park is located approximately 15 miles west of Phoenix. Towering palm trees intermingle with ornamental oranges to make residents and visitors alike feel a sense of welcome. The community was founded in 1917 and incorporated in August of 1987.
Featuring a quaint downtown business district and the Four Star Wigwam Golf Resort and Spa, this “oasis in the desert” is a favorite destination for many in the Valley. Opened to the public in 1929, the Wigwam Golf Resort and Spa has earned numerous four and five star awards. The recently redesigned Blue and Gold golf courses, along with the Red golf course, make the Wigwam’s 54 holes a truly enjoyable golfing experience. While visiting or staying at this Authentic Arizona Resort you will want to take advantage of the Red Door Spa and the newly remodeled AAA Four Diamond Arizona Kitchen Restaurant. If it is steak and fine dining you are looking for, visit the Wigwam’s restaurant, Red’s Steak House.
The town center boasts a locally owned and operated collection of shops and restaurants. You can enjoy indoor or outdoor patio dining from a menu of American, Italian, Persian, Mexican, or Japanese foods. If you enjoy arts and crafts festivals, outdoor concerts and culinary delights, you have another reason to spend time in this beautiful city. Litchfield Park is quickly becoming known for its celebration of the arts. The City’s Christmas in the Park, the award-winning Fine Art and Culinary Festival, the Native American Festival, and the six award-winning Arts in the Park outdoor concerts, along with the annual Library Arts and Crafts Festival truly makes Litchfield Park a destination for art and music lovers. A walk around the City’s five-acre lake and the landscaped open spaces makes your trip to historic Litchfield Park a visit to remember.
Peoria - VisitPeoriaAZ.com
Still a visionary community, the City of Peoria was established in the 1880s after a settler’s vision.
Even with a setting as beautiful as the natural Sonoran Desert, Peoria’s attractions are definite standouts – from the second-largest lake in Arizona to nationally-recognized sporting events, and from arts and entertainment opportunities to new independent restaurants and shopping – Peoria has it all.
Peoria is a flourishing city that is swiftly growing to one of the largest in the Valley thanks to its accessibility via the Loop 101 and soon, the completion of Loop 303 will not only allow access through the city, but also add exciting new amenities.
Peoria Sports Complex was the first two-team Major League Baseball spring training facility in the country, and is the Spring Training and player development facility for the Seattle Mariners and San Diego Padres. The 11,000-seat Complex, with 12 practice fields and team clubhouses, is used year-round. The Sports Complex is also used for special events such as concerts, festivals, art shows, youth and adult national and local baseball tournaments.
Surrounding Peoria Sports Complex is the city’s Entertainment District featuring a wide variety of shopping, dining, and entertainment opportunities including live performances at several unique venues. Arizona Broadway Theatre produces six to eight major musical theater productions each year, encompassing a wide spectrum of Broadway favorites in an elegant dinner setting.
Anchoring the Old Town revitalization project is the $13 million, 20,000-square-foot, state-of-the-art Performing Arts Center. Home to Theater Works, Arizona’s largest community-based theater group, the center offers performances throughout the year as well as workshops and classes for all ages and performers.
Nearby, the Challenger Space Center of Arizona provides all ages an astronomical thrill. Part of an international network, the center allows groups of visitors to simulate a two-and-one-half-hour space mission, varying from a trip to the moon to a visit to a comet. The center also offers educational programs for individuals, families and schools as well as camps, stargazing, and corporate programs and rentals. With its unique affiliation to the Smithsonian Institute, access to national quality museum exhibits is the bonus.
For anyone seeking activities, The Rio Vista Park and Recreation Center is a facility so versatile, one would never have to leave. Covering 50 acres and promoting a healthy lifestyle, it includes: a skate park, sporting fields, a rock-climbing wall, indoor courts, a public gymnasium, picnic areas, sand volleyball and an urban lake which offers fishing. Plans are well underway for the construction of Peoria’s second community park. This 80-acre park, scheduled to open during the summer of 2012, will feature six lighted sports fields for baseball and softball, and four lighted regulation sized soccer fields. These sports fields will also provide all the needed comfort for spectators and families as the added site amenities will make your visit a true recreational experience. Shaded playgrounds for all ages of children, water splash and play areas for youth, and picnicking areas will make your visit to Peoria’s second community park memorable. You can even bring your canine pets to the off-leash dog park to run, swim, and socialize with their peers. Other attractions are also planned so come enjoy the experience and Play Peoria!
On the northern end of the city, nature enthusiasts enjoy the luminous waters of Lake Pleasant, a paradise for waterskiers, jet-skiers, scuba divers, sailors and anglers. Lake Pleasant Regional Park, thought of by many as the “Jewel in the Desert” blends unrivaled beauty with unlimited outdoor recreation. At 10,000 acres, the lake is Arizona’s second-largest and appropriately named. The bass fishing is excellent, and two marinas offer a full selection of fishing boats, speedboats and Jet skis. And, visit the Desert Outdoor Learning Center, which offers excellent learning opportunities about not only the lake, but also the surrounding desert area. The 26,000-square-foot facility provides 30 different programs ranging from dinosaur history and stargazing, to life in the desert complete with guided hikes.
Anchoring the south end of Peoria, complete with canopied walkways, Park West is Peoria’s premiere open-air shopping destination. This pedestrian-friendly center allows shoppers to enjoy a destination complete with upscale shopping, dining and entertainment.
Sun City - SunCityAZ.org
Founded in 1960, Sun City is a master-planned retirement community built by the Del Webb Corporation. It’s the largest retirement community in the nation and is world-famous for its active, resort retirement lifestyle and has set the standard for other retirement communities to follow. Sun City is self-contained with many retail centers and restaurants offering a variety of shopping, dining and services. Sun City boasts the largest concentration of year round recreational facilities in the United States. Eleven golf courses and seven recreation centers provide swimming, tennis, bowling and a myriad of other activities. The Lakeview Recreation Center even has View Point Lake for fishing.
Sun City West - SunCityWest.org
After its success with Sun City, Del Webb moved four miles down the road and launched Sun City West, a second community mirroring the lifestyle enjoyed by those in Sun City. Like Sun City, the community is unincorporated and is age restricted. Just 14 miles northwest of Phoenix, Sun City West hosts four recreation centers, nine golf courses, a public and a private country club. Residents enjoy fitness, sports and over 106 charter and civic clubs.
Residents continue to play baseball, participate in the Variety Show, choral groups and volunteer activities. Amenities are just minutes away which include shopping centers, a library, the Del E. Webb Hospital and Louisa Kellam Center for Women’s Health, several healthcare providers, grocery stores, drug stores and spas. Drive your golf cart or bike to visit friends and run errands. A lifestyle you need to see to believe.
Surprise - SurpriseAZ.gov
In Surprise, you are surrounded by friendly people who love connecting with great outdoor recreation while building homes and families in a clean, safe city of beautiful new neighborhoods.
From Cactus League Spring Training to an award-winning tennis facility hosting stars like McEnroe and Kournikova, you will find lots of ways to get into the beautiful Arizona outdoors. The warm winter sun creates the perfect atmosphere to hike or camp in our White Tank Mountains, where you will be amazed by ancient petroglyphs and panoramic desert views.
So what is the next big thing needed in the fast growing city? It just might be you and your business! Surveys show residents think more retail choices and job opportunities would make Surprise downright perfect.
An exaggeration? Hardly, as 87 percent of residents say this is a great place to live, and 91 percent say they would recommend it to others. And 93 percent of people ages 18-34 say Surprise is a wonderful place to raise a family.
Our well-managed growth to a sunny city of more than 100,000 means more retail opportunities in Surprise than just about anywhere in the United States. In 2009, we issued 935 business permits to fired up entrepreneurs.
Our well-educated, motivated work force is eager to work here in the community they so enthusiastically call home. And while we are on the subject…what is to stop you from considering Surprise your new home? 91 out of a hundred of us think you should! Come to Surprise, and bring life together!
Tolleson - TollesonAZ.org
Tolleson, with its easy access to I-10 and Loop 101 is ideally located for residents who would like to partake of the Valley’s entertainment scene and for businesses looking to ship their products throughout the Southwest and across the country. Approximately ten miles from downtown Phoenix it is close to Cricket Pavilion, the University of Phoenix Stadium, Gila River Arena and a plethora of entertainment venues. Tolleson boasts three city parks, five lighted basketball courts, tennis and racquet ball courts.
Through the years the city has retained its foundation as a family-oriented, friendly small town while creating a regional employment base. Founded by W.G. Tolleson of South Carolina in 1912 the city was incorporated in 1929. Once dependent on agriculture the six square- mile city has a strong commercial and industrial base. It has become an important distribution hub for companies wishing to deliver products to Southwestern markets. The city of Tolleson hosts many large employers, including JBS Packerland, Kroger’s, Albertson’s, Salt River Project, and Sysco Food Systems. In addition to distribution and food, fiber and natural products, the community has a strong manufacturing structure.
Wickenburg - OutWickenburgWay.com
When visitors across the West Valley want a real, authentic taste of the Wild West, they visit the Town of Wickenburg. Few American destinations still exist that capture a bygone era quite like Wickenburg – from its quintessentially Western historic downtown and dude ranches to its uncanny ability to pay tribute to the Old West’s glory days without being hokey, the town has hit on the formula for successfully merging the past with the present in a way that awakens the cowboy in everyone.
Those seeking an authentic Old West experience can saddle up for horseback rides at one of four distinct guest ranches, take in a performance at the state-of-the-art Del. E. Webb Center for the Performing Arts, enjoy a day of fine art at the Desert Caballeros History Museum (a Wickenburg institution for more than half a century) or take a historic walking tour through Wickenburg’s recently restored downtown area. Cowboy culture is also alive and well in Wickenburg through a series of well-attended annual events, from February’s Gold Rush Days to fall’s Fiesta de Septiembre and December’s notable Cowboy Christmas Poetry Gathering.
Those seeking a little modern-day merrymaking can spend the day at Los Caballeros Golf Club, listed among Golf magazine’s “Top 75 Golf Courses in the Country,” or take an off-road Jeep tour through Wickenburg’s beautiful Box Canyon country, while visitors ready to get their blood pumping can hike up Vulture Peak, home of one of the richest gold mines in Arizona history, or explore The Nature Conservancy’s Hassayampa River Preserve, which boasts more than 230 species of birds.
When it comes time to kick up the spurs, kick back at an award-winning guest ranch or one of numerous historic bed and breakfasts that dot Wickenburg’s expansive desert landscape, or relax with a cold cocktail amidst the shadows of Vulture Peak.
From sun up to sun down, there’s something in Wickenburg to awaken the cowboy in everyone. Take a day trip or spend a week, because there’s no better place to truly experience the historic wonder of the West.
Youngtown - YoungtownAZ.org
Youngtown was the first full fledged retirement community in the country and the first to restrict residency to those 59 and older, but in 1998 was opened to residents of all ages. Situated on the opposite bank of the Agua Fria River from El Mirage, Youngtown boasts its own Historical Society and the Caliche Cactus Garden, a collection of native cacti. While continuously growing, Youngtown offers a lake, numerous parks, a library, and a clubhouse. Come enjoy this small-town friendly feel.
Text courtesy of Hennen Publishing as seen in the Arizona Avenues Official Visitors Guide.
City of Avondale
Buckeye Valley Chamber of Commerce
City of El Mirage
Goodyear City Hall
Laveen Community Council
City of Litchfield Park
Peoria Chamber of Commerce
Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce
Southwest Valley Chamber of Commerce
Sun City Visitors Center
Sun City West Visitors Center
City of Surprise
Tolleson City Hall
Wickenburg Chamber of Commerce
Youngtown City Hall