Central City South
DPJ’s Wire series delivers news and information straight from the source without translation.
One Hundred Community Sponsors Contributed to Holiday Decoration Fund
Earlier this fall, community members representing the greater downtown Phoenix community, including the City of Phoenix, METRO Light Rail, Phoenix Community Alliance, neighborhood organizations and local business owners, created the Holiday Decoration Fund, and put out a call for contributions to help bring seasonal sparkle back to our city’s grandest boulevard.
Last year was the first time since light rail construction began that the holiday streetlight decorations on Central Avenue were installed. By the end of that season, however, it was clear that the decorations were too deteriorated to reuse and a solution needed to be found.
In just a few short weeks, the organizers of the Holiday Decoration Fund have gathered enough community-wide support to decorate 219 streetlights, 184 of those sponsored by 100 financial sponsors, with a few salvaged decorations from last year. Streetlights on Central Avenue, ranging from North Central to South Central, will be decorated with candy canes and poinsettias with LED lights adding some sparkle.
“This says so much about what the community can do when it comes together,” said City of Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton. “Holiday decorations are an important aspect of vibrant community. Thanks to Phoenix Community Alliance for their leadership, and to all the participants who are brightening Central Avenue.”
“South Mountain area residents and businesses really get in the spirit of the holidays, with many events and celebrations for families to enjoy,” said Councilman Michael Nowakowski. “The opportunity to have Central Avenue – the main route connecting the central city and our downtown to the South Mountain area – decked out in holiday lights would really add that extra layer of excitement for families and children. Let’s turn Central Avenue into a holiday wonderland!”
“I am thrilled to see holiday decorations come back to Central Avenue. These decorations foster a sense of community among Phoenix residents, and help build a festive holiday spirit for downtown shoppers, diners and visitors,” said Councilman Tom Simplot. “I applaud the leadership of Phoenix Community Alliance and the Midtown Museum District Neighborhood Association in making this happen.”
“Holiday decorations along Central Avenue are one of our greatest community traditions,” said Mo Stein, Chairman of Phoenix Community Alliance’s Board of Directors. “Growing up in Phoenix, this was always a family activity. What better way to continue to bring families together and celebrate the Heart of our City, with new restaurants, shops, housing and light rail happening daily. We thank everyone who is helping this great tradition.”
“The Downtown Phoenix Partnership is very excited about the prospect of holiday lights along the entire length of Central Ave through the central city. This is our signature street and it deserves to be the showcase of our holiday festivities,” said David Roderique, President and CEO of Downtown Phoenix Partnership.
Central Avenue will twinkle with spirit from Thanksgiving through the MLK Holiday. ‘Tis the season to bring your family and friends to Central Avenue, ride the light rail and take in the beauty of the season.
The following is the list of 100 participating sponsors of Holiday Decoration Fund:
A Tropical Concert
Aragon Real Estate Group
Arizona Central Credit Union
Arizona State University
Artisan Lofts on Central
Barron Collier Companies
Best Buy Insurance
BMO Harris Bank
Brophy College Preparatory
Central Park Square
Central United Methodist Church
Chateaux on Central
City of Phoenix Industrial Development Authority
Dick’s Ace Auto Repair
DOXA Central, LLC
DWL Architects & Planners
Evergreen Commercial Realty LLC
First American Title Company
FEZ Restaurant & Bar
Friendly House/Unity Way Fire Star
Gaedeke Group LLC
Habitat Metro LLC
Hon. Ruben Gallegos and Kate Gallegos
Hon. Tom Simplot
Goodwill of Arizona
Grandview Neighborhood Association
H-M Investments LLC
Hazel and Violet Ink
The Heard Museum
H-M Investments LLC
Hula’s Modern Tiki
Inter-Tribal Council of Arizona
Investors Warranty of America/Jones Lang LaSalle/Security Title Plaza
Irish Cultural Center
JP Morgan Chase
Just You Transportation
La Canasta Restaurant
La Bodega Furniture
Laura Crosby and Cat Sweetsir, 2800 Tower
Lawrence and Geyser, Geyser Management LLC
LBA Realty Fund II – Company V, LLC
L.D. Schneider & Associates
Marcos de Niza Tenant Council
Maricopa Integrated Health Systems
McCormack Baron Salazar
McCarthy Cook & Co. / Viad Corporate Center
Metro Realty LLC
Midtown Museum District
Native American Connections at Devine Legacy
Native American Connections/Phoenix Indian Center/People of Color Network
One Camelback Office Building
One Thomas Building
Parallel Capital Partners/City Square
Park Central Mall
Pastor Consulting, Inc.
Pavilions Apartments/Gray Development
Phoenix Art Museum
Phoenix Financial Center/Robert Knight and Associates
Phoenix Revitalization Corporation
Pierson Place Historic District/Charley Jones
Pinnacle Property Management
Place by the Park LLC
Carol A. Poore, Ph.D.
RAZA Development Fund
Red Development LLC
Regency House Condominiums
St. Francis Xavier Catholic Parish
Security Title Plaza
Southwest Center for HIV/AIDS
Switch Restaurant & Wine Bar
Tapestry on Central Condominium Association
The Comisar Collection/TV Museum Phoenix
The Foundry Hotel
The Great American Tower Office Building
The Mueller Family
The One Thomas Building
The Phoenix Plaza Association
Trinity Episcopal Cathedral
Urban Affair LLC
Valle Del Sol
Westward Ho Associates, L.P.
Special Thanks to: Ali Avey – Premiere Volunteer; Joseph Benesh – Phoenix Center for the Arts; Margaret Deitrich – Midtown Museum District; Susan Engstrom – The Great American Tower; Steve Banta and Hillary Foose – Valley Metro; Luz Enriquez and Councilman Nowakowski – City of Phoenix; Don Keuth and Jo Marie McDonald – Phoenix Community Alliance; Jim McPherson; Catrina Kahler – Urban Affair; Dave Roderique and Terry Madezska – Downtown Phoenix Partnership; Eva Olivas – Phoenix Revitalization Corporation; Kurt Schneider – LD Schneider & Associates; Olga Soto; Victor Vidales – REMAX Real Estate; All of the team at WESCO – Mark Forman, Geoffrey Kay, Michael Knoblock, and Christmas Light Decorators Doug Topham and Aaron Farrelly.
About Phoenix Community Alliance:
Phoenix Community Alliance (PCA) is a 501(c)3 non-profit corporation and a collaboration of over 250 major business corporations allied with government, education, research, health & science, as well as arts & cultural organizations. The organization, formed in 1983, is the major, private sector catalyst for the urban renaissance in Downtown Phoenix and the Central City. For more, visit PhoenixCommunityAlliance.com.
Mayor Greg Stanton, the Phoenix Historic Preservation Office, Phoenix Historic Preservation Commission and Heritage Commission hosted a reception to recognize the owners of Phoenix historic properties.
The “Arizona Centennial Celebration,” held Thursday at City Hall, recognized 78 Phoenix historic property owners for helping to preserve our city’s history.
“The majority of our city’s historic properties are privately owned and it is important to recognize the contributions of these individual property owners in preserving our history,” said Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton.
Each property owner received a certificate noting the property’s historic significance, and will receive an exterior wall-mounted plaque noting its historical significance on the Phoenix Historic Property Register.
The selected properties include homes, schools, churches and commercial buildings listed on the Phoenix Historic Property Register. Many also are listed on the National Register of Historic Places, including: Immaculate Heart of Mary Church, William E. Cavness House, Monroe School, Wrigley Mansion, Carver High School, Tovrea Castle, Gold Spot Market, Hanny’s and Temple Beth Israel, among others.
The national touring exhibition of “A Blessing to One Another: Pope John Paul II and the Jewish People,” will be in Phoenix from Oct. 26 to Dec. 11, at the historic George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center, 415 E. Grant St., Phoenix. The exhibit will be open Tuesdays to Fridays from noon to 5 p.m. and Saturdays and Sundays from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m.
The exhibit, viewed by more than a half-million people in 15 prior host cities across the country since its inception in 2005, chronicles the childhood friendship of Karol Wojtyla, later know as Pope John Paul II, and Jerzey Kluger, who became the Pope’s personal emissary to Israel. This friendship between a Catholic boy and his Jewish friend laid the groundwork for the Pope’s historic visit to Israel, which helped mend 2000 years of painful history.
“This is more than a Catholic/Jewish event. It touches every Arizonan,” said Nancy Splain, Blessing Project AZ committee member. “The exhibit’s inspiring message of openness, respect, civility, dialogue and reconciliation is a timely one as we approach our Centennial and look toward our future together.”
The exhibit is divided into four major areas which cover four different periods in the history, the early days of their childhood friendship, the terrible years of the holocaust, the Pope’s rise from priest to bishop to cardinal and their reunion twenty years after the end of the war, the Pope’s rise to the Papacy and their work together to mend the division between the Catholics and the Jews. Each section of the multi-media exhibit consists of mural-sized photographs, videos, artifacts and historical documents that put visitors in the time and place of each section.
“A Blessing to One Another” is important as a living tribute to a powerful example of how friendships developed across different faiths and traditions can help bring reconciliation and healing to individual communities and the wider world.
The exhibition was created and produced by Xavier University, the Hillel Jewish Student Center and the Shtetl Foundation and is being presented in Arizona by the Blessing Project AZ and the Arizona Ecumenical Council, and hosted by the Carver Museum. “A Blessing to One Another” has been endorsed by Rabbi Bonnie Sharfman, president, Board of Rabbis of Greater Phoenix, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix and Dr. Lawrence Bell, executive director, the Arizona Jewish Historical Society.
If You Go
Where: George Washington Carver Museum and Cultural Center, 415 E. Grant Street, Phoenix. (south of Chase Field ballpark, west off of Seventh Street)
When: Tuesdays through Fridays: noon to 5:00 pm; Saturdays and Sundays: 10:00 am to 3:00 pm
Cost: $5.00 general admission, free for children 12 and under
Buy tickets: at the venue
Two free presentations will be offered to the public at the museum.
Thursday, November 10 from 7:00 – 8:30 pm: a screening of the documentary film, “A Dream in Doubt,” followed by commentary and q and a with Rana Singh Sodhi, whose brother, a Sikh Mesa businessman, was killed in America’s first post 9/11 revenge murder. Bill Straus, Arizona regional director, Anti-Defamation League, will facilitate the discussion.
Tuesday, November 29: 7:00 – 8:30 pm: “Law Justice and the Holocaust — Lessons for Today,” a slide presentation by Paul Wieser, a Mandel Fellow of the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, followed by a panel discussion by distinguished members of Arizona’s legal community including Arizona Supreme Court Chief Justice Ruth V. McGregor (retired), ASU Sandra Day O’Connor College of Law Constitutional Law Professor David Kader and Yavapai County Attorney Sheila Polk. Jerry Landau, director of government affairs for the Arizona Supreme Court, will facilitate a question and answer discussion.
Admission to both special events is free but seating is limited. Make your reservations by email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 602-274-1113.
A thriving arts and culture scene is a major factor—some would say THE major factor—if Downtown Phoenix is going to continue its rise. But slashed state funding, harder-to-secure donor donations and smaller audiences have wreaked havoc on too many organizations now teetering on the edge.
The good news is the curtain is rising on some creative strategies and marketing that could set a new stage for our arts and culture groups. Alliance for Audience—the organization behind showup.com—has been working with TRG, a Colorado-based consulting firm that helps arts and cultural organizations grow revenues and patronage.
NEW PATRON DATABASE
For the first time, they have assembled a central database of Arizona’s arts and cultural patrons, derived from lists submitted by the 49 participating organizations to date.
TRG executives were in town September 8, sharing their insights with more than 70 arts and cultural representatives gathered at the Phoenix Art Museum to hear their findings from the first nine months of the program:
■The database comprises 693,504 unique households and almost one million patron transactions. That means that one in four Arizona households is represented—and has been involved, at least once, in arts and cultural activities here.
■ The performing arts category accounted for the large percentage of households,or more than 200,000.
■ There were representatives from all 50 states in the database, which has strong implications for “cultural tourism.”
■ The median age in Arizona’s patrons skewed slightly higher than in other areas of the country (57 years old, compared to 55 in Los Angeles).
■ 67% of households in the database were in Maricopa County, 11% from other parts of Arizona, 3% from California and 19% from other states.
■ Only 21% are multi-buyers.That means that almost 80 percent are found in the database of only one organization.
NEED FOR MULTI-BUYERS
It is the last statistic that has the arts and cultural sector talking.
That’s because, according to TRG President Rick Lester, “multi-buyers are a sign of health for a community. Unique buyers don’t stick around.”
And he has the statistics to prove it. When unique buyers are converted to multi-buyers, the attrition rate drops from 80% to 50%. Among the solutions: cross-marketing and list-sharing, by getting permission from another participating arts or cultural organization to access its database for marketing purposes.
That may be more difficult for some groups than others, especially when they view their database as highly proprietary and worry about other organizations “poaching” their audience. But, in reality, Vice President Will Lester pointed out that “a rising tide raises all ships” and it’s to the entire community’s advantage to create “culture vultures.”
MORE TARGETED MARKETING
“The sharing of lists electronically is not something people can ignore. If we are able to retain people to attend more than one event, that means a tremendous amount to the arts and culture community,” said Shelley Cohn, former executive director of the Arizona Commission on the Arts and Alliance for Audience board chair.
Phoenix Theatre has already been able to put database mining to good use by getting a sharper view of their supporters’ demographics and, consequently, fine-tuning its marketing efforts, according to Vincent VanVleet, managing director. Based on what they’ve learned, they are now doing smaller, better targeted and more frequent mailings and getting more favorable results.
“The Age of Reason has come to arts and culture marketing,” said Matt Lehrman, executive director of Alliance for Audience. “Organizations can make decisions now about marketing to and serving audiences from facts, rather than guts—that’s incredibly powerful.”
(This article appeared on the June/July DPJ Mag)
Welcome to Downtown Phoenix. The urban heart (and stomach) of an area 4 million strong.
Whether eating soulful Mexican out of styrofoam and tinfoil from Carolina’s; skillful, inspired Japanese comforts from Nobuo at Teeter House; or, sanctified artisan pizza from Pizzeria Bianco, a contrasting roster of indulgent experiences exist to be unearthed, and digested.
Discovering your new surroundings or re-exploring the neighborhood you call home, guidance can go along way. In the mood for hangouts popular for their locals-only appeal? Craving see-and-be-seen experiences, hitting destinations preyed upon by Downtown’s more self-aware?
Or, are you one of those globe-trotting chowhounds on an immortal search for bucket-list worthy eating in every new city (or neighborhood) you visit?
As more of a rough template than a step-by-step, exhaustive travel guide, we’ve assembled a light-footed list of notable and respected neighborhood institutions pointed by easy categorization. Pick and choose, mix and match, here are some ideas.
Day One: Native Assimilation
Forgo blatant tourist traps, event-driven sports bars and corporate outposts and spend the day with those who live and breath Downtown Phoenix on a daily basis. This is someone’s home, after all.
Early Morning: Catch up on e-mails and morning caffeine deprivation at Royal at the Market, the cockpit-sized coffee bar tucked toward the rear of the Phoenix Public Market’s indoor grocery. Understated, high-design meets some of the best coffee in the city, roasted in-house daily.
Mid-Morning: Great any hour of the day, opt for a late breakfast at the original Lo-Lo’s Chicken and Waffles for Phoenix’s best known (and best tasting) example of the classic soul food combination.
Lunch: Did you arrive thinking premium-sourced seafood couldn’t be found in the desert? Trek a few miles north to Uptown and reset your thinking at Hana Japanese Eatery, a compact neighborhood sushi spot dedicated to pitch-perfect, seafaring goodness.
Afternoon: Even the natives enjoy their late-afternoon libations. For a chilled brew consider The Main Ingredient Ale House. Located in the quirky Coronado Historic District, TMI (as locals have affectionately chopped it) offers a wide range of beers, craft and known, alongside elevated pub grub favorites.
Dinner: Go casual, go pizza. Though Downtown Phoenix has no shortage of exceptional pizza, locals frequently by-pass more traveled paths for something more mellow, though no-less delicious. At home in the historic Roosevelt neighborhood, Cibo Pizzeria is gem dedicated to artisan pies constructed with superior ingredients.
Late-Night: Hankering for a place habituated by Downtown’s tried-and-true? Begin casually at the Lost Leaf, a personable beer and wine address flooded nightly with artists, musicians and other locals searching for an informal night-cap. Got a buzz and feeling adventurous? Polish the night at Phoenix’s quintessential dive bar (and last-standing tiki bar) the Bikini Lounge. A little off the beaten path along Grand Avenue, expect no-nonsense bartenders, stiff pours and dirt-cheap tabs.