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Tempe Tourism Blog

Herb’s Garden

January 14, 2008

That noise you heard coming from Wells Fargo Arena on the campus of Arizona State University on January 9 wasn’t the earth moving. It was the sound of seeds being planted. Over the past year and a half ASU head basketball coach Herb Sendek has been breathing energy and confidence into a program that has been ploughed under for years. With ASU’s win over archrival University of Arizona last Wednesday – along with an earlier victory over then Number 17 Xavier – the seeds of success have firmly taken root. With ASU now a factor in the highly competitive Pac-10, there is no better ticket in Tempe than an ASU basketball game. They’re affordable enough to take the whole family or an entire group and, with ranked teams like UCLA, Washington State and Stanford coming to town, the games are sure to be exciting and entertaining. And with a trio of freshmen leading the Devils, ASU promises to be a force for some time to come. So join the “Herbivores” at Wells Fargo Arena and Go Devils!

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Ready, Set Run

January 4, 2008

I’ve noticed a lot of people running and walking around the lake lately. A few more than usual…This must have something to do with the upcoming PF Chang’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Arizona Marathon & 1/2 Marathon. It certainly inspired me to take up running a few years ago. I’m wondering how many other people have decided to train just because of this event — maybe for health reasons or to raise money for a charity.

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More than shopping at Tempe Marketplace

December 27, 2007

Christmas is over, which means the shopping frenzy is coming to a close — or just beginning for those who are bargain seekers. I spent quite a bit of time at Tempe Marketplace during the holidays. While my goal was buying gifts, I also noticed that they have a regular schedule of live music in the District. The music was a nice distraction from the holiday craziness. Thursdays through Sundays, they have bands and acoustic musicians at the District stage or at this cool, relaxed spot known at the Harkins Living Room. While you will no longer hear “Carol of the Bells” or “Silent Night” wafting from their stages, you will definitely be able to check out some of our fabulous local bands. And, on the third Thursday of each month, the Edge 103.9 hosts national and regional alternative rock bands for free. This a great addition to Tempe’s music scene.

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I Have Seen the Light

December 3, 2007

Driving home from IKEA, along I-10 in South Tempe, this past Saturday I was struck by an amazing sight. It was one of those “I wish I had a camera” moments, but doing 75 amid five lanes of freeway traffic, you can understand why I preferred to take a mental picture instead. There is a stretch of highway that affords an unobstructed view of what I’m about to describe. To the left was Downtown Phoenix, shrouded in the steel grey grips of the Valley’s first winter storm. To the right, literally bathed in brilliant beams of sunshine, breaking through the mist was Downtown Tempe. As if stretching out to meet those sunrays halfway were the tall buildings that are transforming the Tempe skyline. I occurred to me at that point that Tempe is literally and figuratively rising to the occasion. There was Downtown Phoenix, more or less as it has looked for the past 10 years — languid and lifeless. And glowing in the promise of what is being built, was Tempe; fresh, new and gleaming with excitement. Much is happening in Downtown Tempe. Much that will spread more than a little sunshine to its neighbors.

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‘Tis the Season

November 29, 2007

This is the time in Tempe that I love the most. The white lights are sparkling in the trees, the Christmas tree is up and my lunch hour is spent strolling Mill Avenue for gifts. The Tempe Festival of the Arts is this weekend, from Friday through Sunday. Looks like I might have to extend my lunch hour! I always find a present or two, and presents for myself too.

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So much to do, so little time

October 26, 2007

There are so many events in Tempe this weekend. Actually, I’m amazed that they fit into just one weekend. Every Sun Devil fan will want to attend the Homecoming game against Cal on Saturday night. Now that we’re ranked #4 IN THE COUNTRY, it’s going to be an even more exciting game. For the athletic types, the Soma 1/2 Ironman Triathlon is happening this Sunday at Tempe Town Lake. Families will want to see “A Thousand Cranes” by Childsplay at the gorgeous, new Tempe Center for the Arts. And, if you’re looking for even more culture, don’t miss the Dia de Los Muertos Festival at Desert Botanical Garden. Have fun out there!

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Go Devils!

October 18, 2007

7 and 0. Let me say that again: 7 and 0. I can’t remember a time when there was such a frenzy about the Sun Devils football team. Perhaps it was the 1996 season that led us to the Rose Bowl. Maybe this year’s excitement even surpasses that. I think it does. According to the NCAA Football Rankings this week, we’re ranked #8 in the nation. In my heart, of course, we’re number one. I can’t wait to see us crush Cal on the 27th. Wildcats, consider yourself warned. We’re coming after you too. Go Devils!

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Dragonfly is OPEN!

October 5, 2007

My friends and I had lunch at Dragonfly last week.  It was GREAT!  The food was delicious and well prepared.  Our server was super knowledgeable and explained everything to us in great detail.  I am so excited that there is a new lunch option on Mill Ave! My friend Jay got this crazy Vietnamese coffee that brews in a little coffee cup right on the table!  Check it out!

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Ready, go, shop!

September 25, 2007

The grand opening of Tempe Marketplace is almost here! I’ve been there every weekend for the past month and every time that I go, I discover a few more stores and restaurants are open. From 7-11 p.m. on Friday the 28th, you can be there for the official ribbon cutting and entertainment: like djs, street performers and live bands. It will all be taking place on the District Stage, right next to Dave & Buster’s. My advice? Be there or be square!

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Caffe Boa on Mill Recognized

September 12, 2007

Caffe Boa on Mill Ave. has won Wine Spectator Magazine’s Award of Excellence for 2007. They were selected for having “one of the best wine selections in the country.” There were almost 3,000 entries and Caffe Boa is the only restaurant in Tempe named by the prestigious magazine. The award is based on “well-reviewed wines and a solid food menu, and is the heart and soul of our [award] program,” according to magazine’s restaurant awards manager, Nathan Wesley. Caffe Boa is owned by Jay Wisniewski and is located 398 South Mill Street, just south of 3rd Street.   If you’ve never been to Caffe Boa, they have a fantastic happy hour with a delicious assortment of affordable appetizers and tasty beverages.  Check them out!

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