COOL SUMMER: PRESCOTT

Music wafts through this mile-high city

2013-06-06T00:00:00Z Music wafts through this mile-high cityKathleen Allen Arizona Daily Star Arizona Daily Star
June 06, 2013 12:00 am  • 

Prescott has a magic number: 86.

That's the average high temperature in this mile-high city surrounded by the Prescott National Forest.

If that's not reason enough to make the four-hour trek to the city, here are some others:

• A wealth of nearby lakes where you can swim, boat, lounge.

• Glorious hiking trails.

The Granite Dells just outside the town, which have a mystical quality to them, and some say a buried treasured in them.

• A town square in downtown that's surrounded by antique stores and art galleries, along with historic Whiskey Row. The square is host to regular (and free) music concerts during the summer.

It's the downtown that Prescott resident Dan "Shorty" Culp says not to miss. Culp moved to the city from California 10 years ago and quickly joined the Buscaderos, a group of men who dress in Old West garb and greet visitors to downtown.

"Visitors should experience downtown Prescott," he advises. "There are lots of activities at the square - parades, music. The atmosphere is great."

Culp admits to being partial to summer in the city. And to winter, spring and fall, there, too.

"I love Prescott all the time."

Highlights

• Wet and wonderful: Five lakes are a short distance from Prescott. One of our favorites is Watson Lake, just four miles from the town center and tucked away in the Dells. You can rent kayaks or canoes there, camp, fish, play in the horseshoe pit, or just sit on the shore. You can also rent bicycles at Watson and do a two-wheeling tour of the Dells. allprescott.com/lakes_rivers_falls and prescott.com/lakes-and-hiking

• Take a hike: Take lots of them. The area surrounding and in Prescott is chock-full of hiking trails, from easy strolls to more strenuous adventures. One of the more popular hikes is Thumb Butte Trail, a 2.1-mile hike that is just 10 minutes from downtown Prescott. fs.usda.gov/prescott You can find hikers' reviews at alltrails.com/us/arizona/prescott

• Cover-ups: The Thumb Butte Quilters' Guild's show will feature more than 300 quilts, appraisers, demonstrations and a silent auction. It's June 14-15. tbqguild.com

• A storm's a-comin': The 15th annual Tsunami on the Square features performing arts, including dance, music and theater, with local and international talents participating. It even has a clown workshop for kids. It's June 15. tsunamionthesquare.org

• Bottoms up: The Mile High Brewfest, June 16, in its second year, gives a taste of what craft brewers from around the state are up to. milehighbrewfest.com

• Pick a little: The Prescott Bluegrass Festival draws talent from around the country. It's June 22-23. prescottbluegrassfestival.com

• Ride 'em cowboy: Prescott Frontier Days include what organizers call "the world's oldest rodeo" - this year marks the 126th annual event. It's happening July 1-7. worldsoldestrodeo.com

• Indian art: The Prescott Indian Art Market, July 14-15, is in its 16th year. This year, there will a sand painter attending, as well as a handful of Navajo rug weavers. Participants in the juried show were selected by an all-Indian panel. sharlot.org

• Movie marathon: The Prescott Film Festival, July 24-31, is a celebration of independent film. prescottfilmfestival.com

• Jazzy stuff: The Prescott Jazz Summit includes a roster of talent from around the county. Aug. 23-25. prescottjazz.com

Copyright 2014 Arizona Daily Star. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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