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Scottsdale Winter Journey

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Scottsdale Winter Journey

The Southwest is beautiful in the fall, and with high temperatures in the 60s and 70s during the day, this desert area is extremely comfortable. Festivals and events are scheduled throughout the winter months, and the holiday season in the desert will make for some awesome memories. Here are a variety of events for the Scottsdale winter season.

Day 1 – Desert Botanical Gardens

You should visit the Desert Botanical Gardens every time you visit Scottsdale. With over 50,000 species of native plants and over 140 acres in the Sonoran Desert, the garden is always changing and you will see something new with each visit to this desert garden. One of the most popular events the garden hosts is Los Noches de Las Luminarias. For several nights during the holiday season, the garden’s trails are illuminated by over 8,000 hand-lit luminaries. Listen to live music, sip warm cocoa and cider, and stroll through the sparkling desert trails. Start off your holiday season with this area tradition.

Desert Botanical Gardens
1201 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ

Day 2 – Phoenix Zoo

Located just minutes from Scottsdale, the Phoenix Zoo has play areas for the kids, camel rides, a giraffe encounter and plenty of animals. And it has the only walk-through squirrel monkey exhibit in the country. Another holiday tradition is Zoo Lights when millions of lights line the zoo’s paths, there is a 200-ft polar slide and live reindeer. Visiting the zoo at night, lit with millions of sparkly festive holiday lights, will provide you and your family with memories to last a lifetime.

Phoenix Zoo
455 North Galvin Parkway
Phoenix, AZ

Day 3 – Scottsdazzle

For a special holiday, head to Scottsdazzle and enjoy the month-long holiday celebration in Old Town during December. Most events are free, and many are kid-friendly. Enjoy the Tree Lighting & Sing-along, Feliz Navidad Festival, and stroll down Fifth Avenue, which is transformed into a Scottsdale winter wonderland complete with Sugar Plum Fairies and Nutcracker performances. Adult activities include the Gold Palette Art Walk, The Santa Wine Around & Ale Trail. This month-long festival could be your family’s new holiday tradition.

City of Scottsdale Tourism & Events
7506 East Indian School Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 4 – Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction

Billed as the “granddaddy of all car events,” the Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction takes place in the middle of January. This auction brings collectors and spectators from around the world to Scottsdale to see the world’s finest collection of classic cars. If you can’t make it to the auction, you can watch it live-streamed on the Discovery Channel. It’s a must-see event for all car enthusiasts during the Scottsdale winter season.

Barrett-Jackson Classic Car Auction
West World
16601 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 5 – The Heard Museum World Championship Hoop Dance Contest

And, now for something completely different. Each February, top American Indian and Canadian First Nations hoop dancers compete at the Heard Museum in Phoenix for cash prizes and the chance to call themselves World Champion for a year. Each dancer presents their own interpretation of this traditional intertribal dance, and individual dancers use from four to fifty hoops at a time. Watch this amazing display of artistic expression, traditional ceremonies, athletic ability, and imagination as dancers vie for the title.

The Heard Museum
2301 North Central Avenue
Phoenix, AZ

Day 6 – Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show

Who doesn’t love to watch the beautiful prancing of Arabian horses! With their distinctive wedge-shaped heads held high, arched necks and high tail carriage, they are beautiful in motion. Since 1955, the Arabian Horse Show has been held every February in Scottsdale. With over 2,000 horses on display and competing, the top owners, trainers, and breeders from all over the world come to the show. Whether you come to buy or just marvel at their beauty, intelligence, and agility, the Arabian Horse Show is the place to watch the best of these magnificent animals shine during the Scottsdale winter season.

Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show
West World
16601 North Pima Road
Scottsdale, AZ

Day 7 – The Waste Management Phoenix Open

Known in golfing circles as “The Greatest Show on Grass,” The Waste Management Phoenix Open is held in Scottsdale each February. The best-attended tournament in the world on a PGA course, the Stadium Course at TPC Scottsdale provides its spectators with exciting golf year after year. Come early or stay late for the opportunity to play on the course or just grab some tickets and watch some world-class golf.

The Waste Management Phoenix Open
TPC Scottsdale
17020 North Hayden Road
Scottsdale, AZ


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