Guidelines for a Pleasant Visit-Information Release-History

Most Special Events Included With Admission
$12.50 for Adults, $5 for Ages 5-12

Fall and Winter Hours Daily from 8:00 - 5:00 > no park entry or admission after 4:00
BTA is open 8:00 to 5:00 daily during Fall and Winter months, with no park entry after 4:00 so our final visitors each day have one full hour to explore the gardens and trails before we close at 5:00 sharp.
READ MORE IN OUR E-NEWSLETTER

Fall Foliage Finale Festival Thanksgiving Weekend Nov. 25-26
11am-3pm music, arts vendors & cider
Boyce Thompson Arboretum boasts ‘Arizona's Fall Foliage Finale’ with glorious color in our famous Chinese Pistachio trees each November, and our Thanksgiving weekend event capitalizes on the color with two days of music and arts vendors outdoors beneath the colorful canopy of leaves. Could autumn truly be complete without getting outside to enjoy vivid fall foliage -- and the swirl of leaves carried on a November breeze? Most famous are the forty-foot-tall Chinese Pistachio trees across from the Wing Memorial Herb Garden, and the ones near the suspension bridge at the east end of the High Trail. Our Fall Foliage Finale Festival features live music by Scott Schaefer(flute, didgeridoo) on Saturday starting at 10:00 a.m. and at the top of each until 3:00. Russ Braman and guests will a range of music, including acoustic versions of Beatles songs, Sunday from 11 a.m. until 3:00. Carry cash as you walk into the gardens; Tall Order Catering is usually here with hot pots of posole, chile or soup for $5 a bowl; hot spiced apple cider, too. Check our Facebook for daily photos and Fall color updateshttps://www.facebook.com/btarboretum

Guided Walk Around the Main Trail Friday, Saturday and Sunday November 24, 25, 26
10:00 a.m. -- Tours move to 11:00 a.m. Dec. 1-2-3, and December 9 with Clyde Waterman
Tourguide Rich Adams narrates arboretum history and points out fascinating plants, animals and geology seen around the gardens on guided walking tours this month all three days of Thanksgiving Weekend, November 24-25-26. Start time is one hour later, 11:00 a.m., for tours next month December 1, 2, 3 and 9. Guided tours are included with daily admission; no pre-registration needed, just be in the visitor center breezeway lobby at start time. Revisit this page in December to verify dates and times for guided tours in late December and during January.

Geology Guided Walk November 25 , Saturday -- at 1:30 p.m.
1:30 start times in October when daily hours are 8:00 - 5:00
Learn about rocks and volcanic formations along our main trail on a tour with professional Geologist Rich Leveilleas your guide. His lively tour compresses almost two billion years of geologic history into just over one educational hour! Learn about Pinal schist, the volcanic origins of Picket Post Mountain and the Apache Leap tuff. Another 'Rock Star' among our guide cadre is Scott McFadden, and get acquainted withASU Professor Steve Semken

Guided Bird Walk Sunday November 26
8:30 a.m. Bird Walks continue December 1 & 1, also December 10
Arboretum guided bird walks are an ideal way to get into birding and to sharpen your skills – beginners are welcome. No binoculars are no problem! Ask in our gift shop when you pay admission – loaner binoculars are available. Cindy West and Cindy Marple team-up to guide our Sunday walk on November 26, Lisa Murphy and Peggy Trantham return to lead their Friday birdwalk December 1; Troy Corman and Cindy Marple guide on Saturday Dec. 2; then Charles Babbitt, Kathe Anderson and Cindy West on Saturday Dec. 10. Our local Superior Christmas Bird Count is December 23, contact information is below. Want to check recent bird sightings? Read our hot-spot page on Ebird
http://ebird.org/ebird/hotspot/L166979

Book Club Friday, December 1: Desert Trader, The Life and Quilts of Goldie Tracy Richmond
9:00 a.m.
Stopby our gift shop and get your copy of Desert Trader, The Life and Quilts of Goldie Tracy Richmond
wooden shade ramadas around the main trail offer a great place to read on a November day beneath towering shade trees, and our BTA book club showcases this title with a lively discussion that meets on Friday December 1. Desert Trader by Carolyn O’Bagy Davis tells the story of Goldie Tracy Richmond who came to Arizona in 1927. Goldie and her husband lived in a canvas lean-to and mined, ran traplines and operated Tracy’s Trading Post. Goldie lived among the Tohono O’odham people for four decades and the stories told by the O’odham people of her life are legendary. She spoke the Tohono O’odham language, and was known as a friend to the O’odham people. Goldie also made magnificent quilts with images of the desert landscape and Indian life; one was named one of the 100 most significant quilts of the twentieth century. Her amazing story is a compelling chapter in Arizona history. Attendance at our once-a-month meetup is included with $12.50 daily admission if you're not already among our annual members, or don't have an AZ State Parks annual pass (and free, of course, to all who do). Stop by this week for your copy or order a copy by mail, have a credit card ready and call 520.689.2723. RSVP that you plan to attend the book club meeting, please email an RSVP to Vicki Johnson: BTABookClub@msn.com
email meeting coordinator Vicki

Pinal Master Gardeners Workshops December 2, again February 3
Fall and Winter Saturdays at 11:00
Green-thumbed volunteers with Pinal County's Superstition Mountain Master program present ‘Cool vs. Warm-Seasonal Edibles,' on Saturday December 2 when their Saturday series of 11am outdoor workshops continues. Held on the tree-shaded flagstone courtyard in front of the Smith Building, this session will help keep you stocked with healthy greens, all year 'round. Workshops continue Feb. 3 with ‘Succulents: Out of Africa”. Once-a-month Master Gardener workshops are free to BTA annual members and state-parks-pass-holders; included with $12.50 daily admission for others. Get active with our local Master Gardeners, their classes and volunteer work, call Carol at 602-438-4003 or email: caparrott21@hotmail.com

Lunchtime Live Music: ‘Handpan’ Percussion December 2 and 3 - Saturday and Sunday
12:00 – 2:00 near the Smith Building
If you love the sound of steel drums or marimba – just wait ‘til you hear the peaceful sound of ‘handpan’ drums Saturday and Sunday Dec. 2 & 3 when East Valley recording artist Saggio shares his singular music outdoors beneath the shade of towering trees from 12:00-2:00 p.m. We’ll have a few tables available if you want to bring a picnic lunch and friends; there’s no concert fee or charge to attend. Saggio loves to create music outdoors, surrounded by nature and beauty – and wanted to celebrate the season with Arboretum members and visitors. If weather is clement for an outdoor concert, that is. Predictions for rain or unpleasant weather will cancel either day’s free concert – check the weather report, and feel free to call either morning to verify the music’s on. 520.689.2723 (during business hours 8am-5pm)
“I prefer to play informally, unplugged and improvising – to just be a part of the organic unfolding of the plant life as visitors make their way around, enjoying the gardens. I believe I have a beautiful unique sound to share, and I want to complement the natural beauty of the arboretum, not upstage it.”
Saggio’s new CD ‘Tree of Life’ will be available for purchase, too. Read more about Saggio and his dedication to the healing power of percussion and music at
http://www.saggiohealingarts.com

History Walking Tour with Sylvia Lee Sunday December 3
10:00 a.m. repeats Saturday February 3, Sunday April 1and Saturday June 2
You may have walked our trails a dozen times and never crossed paths with the Galapagos Tortoise pens. Take a moment to scan the horizon above Picket Post Mountain, can you imagine cavalry soldiers camped in this region in the late 1800s? Phoenix historian Sylvia Lee narrates this two-hour walking tour focused on the life and times of Colonel William Boyce Thompson, and his Arboretum. Sylvia's tour moves to 10:00 a.m. and on Saturday October 7, the same month that Arboretum daily hours return to the 8:00 to 5:00 Fall and Winter schedule.
READ MORE about arboretum history

Guided Walk Thursday December 7 -- Narrated in French
9:00 a.m.
Vous êtes invité à rejoindre notre nouveau tour guidé en Français ! Whether you’re learning French or fluent in the language, we’re offering a new tour guided in Gallic – a chance to walk our main trail and hear narration about familiar gardens and scenery described in that most romantic of all Romance languages. Catherine Dhuicq is a musician and expat living in Chandler; she loves the Arboretum gardens and wanted a unique, new way to volunteer here – and will lead a walking tour narrated in her native tongue Thursday Dec. 7. She devoted time this summer to learning waypoints around the Main Trail and attending tours guided by our expert cadre of guides; as with other guided walks here, Catherine’s outing is included with $12.50 daily admission – and free for our annual members

Home School Day Tour and Learning Activity December 7
Homeschool families have two dates this fall to gather for shared educational workshops. Programs begin at 11:00 am, spaces are limited and pre-registration is required. Students age 4-18 may attend, along with 2 parents or adult chaperones. Pre-pay $2 enrollment per person (that’s both kids and adults), with $12.50 for additional adults who attend. Have a credit card ready and call 520.689.2723 during daytime business hours from 8am-5pm. Questions – or want to be added to the email list for Homeschool Day announcements? Email lpacheco@ag.arizona.edu
Edible & Medicinal Desert Plants December 7, Thursday. Native Americans and Spanish settlers used plants for fiber, food, medicine and shelter – from prickly pear cactus pads and fruit to agaves, saguaro, mesquite and palo verde. These plants are explained with interpretive signs along our Currandero Trail; walk the trail with our guides to see these plants in their natural habitat and sample tastes unique to our Sonoran Desert.

Rocks, Gems, Minerals and Geology Dec. 9 Saturday
9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Pinal County is copper country -- learn why our corner of Arizona has rich ore deposits and gemstones such as peridot and turquoise during a day of guided tours; you can also buy gemstones and jewelry from an array of vendors with exhibit tables set up near the Visitor Center from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ASU Professor Steve Semken will lead a "hands-on semi-lecture activity on the basics of minerals and rocks (I’ll bring some), and how to identify the most abundant local rock types" starting at 10:00 a.m.; possibly followed by a guided walk down to Queen Creek to learn how a "cobble count"reveals geology farther upstream. Revisit this page to confirm more start times for other events; Laurence Garvie will offer a lecture and slideshow about meteorites (you'll be able to handle real Mars rocks!), or a presentation about basic geology with Scott McFadden. Phil St. George plans to be here demonstrating gold panning, too!

Edible - Medicinal Desert Plants Walk Guided By Jim Shepherd December 9
1:30 p.m.
Learn the edible and medicinal uses of native desert plants on a walk along our Curandero Trail guided by desert plants enthusiast Jim Shepherd. This leisurely one-hour walk is your chance to learn about prickly pear cacti, ratany, agaves, jojobas -- and the ways native plants have fed, healed and clothed Sonoran desert peoples for more than one thousand years.
                      ** Please note: this guided tour explores the Curandero Trail, which has steep sections that are not suitable for visitors who use wheelchairs or walkersRead more about jojoba, creosote and prickly pears

Intro to Photography Workshop and outdoor shoot Sunday December 10
9:00 a.m. - no signup or pre-registration necessary
RSVP by email to MiMi for details
Read more and RSVP by Email
or phone 480.319.2229
There's no separate fee to attend - these informal sessions are included with $12.50 daily admission; free to Arboretum annual members and Arizona State Parks pass-holders.
Valley photographers MiMi, Jack, Tim, Mark and Kathy have photographed landscapes and people from Arizona to the Mediterranean, criss-crossing America, west to east and north to south exploring national parks, urban landscapes and exploring subjects through portrait, close-up photography. The quintet of photographers volunteer a day here at the Arboretum each month -- sharing their camera skills and coaching beginners. The goal is to share a few basic camera lessons while photographing the gardens. These photo walks include time for participants to learn basic camera functions ranging from aperture and exposure to white balance. In addition, participants will be able to ask their specific questions answered in a supportive small groups, each with a friendly camera coach whose goal is to "put the fun in camera functions, and eliminate aspects of photography that can be intimidating to beginners."
CONNECT WITH MiMi and other COACHES, JOIN OUR FACEBOOK GROUP

Digital Photographers Roundtable December 16 , Saturday
10:00 a.m. in the lecture room
Photographers of all skill levels who enjoy digital image post-processing are invited to meet November 18, Saturday, at 10:00 a.m. in the Smith Building Lecture room (and again January 20). Beginners are definitely welcome to attend this popular recurring meetup, which includes programs and platforms beyond LightRoom and Photoshop. There's no additional charge to attend; meetings are free to BTA annual members and Az State Parks pass-holders, and included with $12.50 daily admission to nonmembers.
Planning to attend? This brief survey helps organizers plan their agenda each month
Monthly meetings usually include on-screen demonstrations of digital editing tools and techniques, discussion of artistic elements such as composition and lighting - and friendly critique of participants' photos. Future meetings are For more detail, Email Tim a brief RSVP, and feel free to mention your preferred editing software:
tim.wohlever@gmail.com

Tree Tour December 17 Sunday
1:30 p.m.
Silviculturally-speaking, and since an Arboretum is by definition a living collection of trees - what guided tour could be more fitting here than a once-a-month "Trees of BTA" guided walk? We invite those who love all things sylvan and want to learn more about trees to be here for a relaxed, slow-paced afternoon tour featuring Arboretum staffer certified Arborist Jeff Payneor else Miguel Hernandez, a chance to learn about trees both native to the Sonoran Desert and exotic, with a skilled professional's tips on tree care and horticulture.

Christmas Bird Count > Boyce Thompson Arboretum, Superior, Oak Flat & Queen Valley
Saturday, December 23 from 7:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.
How did Christmas Bird Counts begin? The Audubon Society reports: "prior to the turn of the 20th century, hunters engaged in a holiday tradition known as the 'Christmas Side Hunt.' They would choose sides and go afield with their guns-whoever brought in the biggest pile of feathered (and furred) quarry won. Conservation was in its beginning stages in that era, and many observers and scientists were becoming concerned about declining bird populations. Beginning on Christmas Day 1900, ornithologist Frank M. Chapman, an early officer in the then-nascent Audubon Society, proposed a new holiday tradition-a 'Christmas Bird Census' that would count birds during the holidays rather than hunt them."
Read more: http://www.audubon.org/history-christmas-bird-count
Birders enthused to join this venerable holiday tradition may participate with our local Superior ‘CBC’ on Dec. 23, Saturday. Coordinator Cynthia Donald arranges teams to census sparrows and tally towhees from Queen Valley and Whitlow Dam to Hewitt Station Road, desert foothills below Picketpost Mountain, here at BTA and the town of Superior - and up Queen Creek Canyon to the Oak Flat campground. Birders of all physical abilities are welcome; you don't have to be a hiker to participate - in fact, Cynthia would welcome a team of 'urban birders' enthused to canvass Superior neighborhoods by car. To volunteer with this count or request more information, call Cynthia at 480.283.4515 or email: planres@earthlink.net

New Year's Day Blessing & Concert with Arvel Bird Monday January 1
12:00 Noon
Here's a resolution you’ll want to keep: begin 2018 here with a spiritual smoke blessing and special concert from noon ‘til 2:00 featuring inspiring Celtic fiddle and flute musician Arvel Bird, who returns to the Arboretum by popular demand for this New Year’s Day ritual. Curious how a recording artist with roots in both Paiute culture and Celtic music blends the two styles? Here’s a sneak preview
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LZFnEPwvYdk
And for more of Arvel, check out this expanded version which includes interviews
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=po-xEDbW0eI
Check the Arboretum website to verify times for other special Jan. 1 events such as ‘First Day Hikes.
Please note that if predictions are for rain or snow (remember New Year's day 2014?), Arvel will move indoors, where the audienc will be limited to 50, and seated first-come, first-served.
Before his success as a solo artist Arvel spent a decade playing fiddle for country legends including Glen Campbell, Loretta Lynn and Louise Mandrell. Concerts are free if you're a BTA annual member; included with the $12.50 daily admission for those who aren't. Find more concert clips at http://www.arvelbird.com
Connect with the artist at:
https://www.facebook.com/thearvelbird

Pictures From Our Past - Slideshow & History Talk Sunday January 7
10:00 a.m. and repeats Saturday March 3, Sunday May 6 and Saturday July 7
Phoenix historian and author Sylvia Lee guides monthly walking tours narrating nuggets of Arboretum history - and putting her anecdotes in perspective next to 1920s structures, and the very first trees planted here. On Sunday January 7 starting at 10:00 a.m., Sylvia host another slideshow of vintage photos projected enlarged on a big screen - a chance to get better acquainted with Col. William Boyce Thompson and his Arboretum. This was also arranged for history fans who are physically unable to walk the 1.5 mile main trail. During an hour in our air-conditioned Lecture Room, Sylvia will show images of vintage historic structures and arboretum gardens while sharing her behind-the-scenes knowledge from spending the past decade researching the history of Boyce Thompson Arboretum.
READ MORE about arboretum history


Butterfly Walks Return Spring 2018
Join us for a guided butterfy walk each month of the Spring and Summer -- a walking tour to see, photograph and learn about colorful species ranging from Empress Leilia to Queen, Spring Azure and more. This leisurely, slow-paced guided tour proceeds along paths that are wheelchair-accessible, exploring our Hummingbird-Butterfly Garden, Demonstration Garden and Children's Garden collections. Revisit this page in March, 2018 for the butterfly walk schedule.

Plants of the Bible Land Guided Walk
future dates are TO BE ANNOUNCED
The Sinai Desert lies roughly at the same latitude as our own Sonoran Desert; many of the same plants common in the Middle East thrive in our Arizona climate, and can be seen here at Boyce Thompson Arboretum. This tour narrates palms, pomegranates, figs, olives, and other Plants of the Bible Land. Tours usually move to 1:30 p.m. during Fall and Winter months; date from October-through-April are TO BE ANNOUNCED.
Wear comfortable walking shoes and a hat, bring sunscreen and water bottle. Read more about
Plants of the Bible Lands on Facebook
The tour, conducted at a leisurely pace, lasts about 90 minutes and proceeds along wheelchair-accessible paths.
Using references in ancient texts, guides will describe how people of the Bible Land used plants as food, medicine, and shelter in ways similar to how native peoples of Southern Arizona continue to do so in modern times.

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