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Photos: Annual Fringe Festival

Photos: Annual Fringe Festival

Paco Fish gestures for Sasha Hartzell to rip off his shirt as part of his show, "Burlesque Vanguard – Advice from a Homeless Stripper/Clown" during the fourth annual Fringe Festival at Hotel Congress, 311 East Congress Street. The Fringe Festival hosts new plays by playwrights and one-man shows. The festival continues today at Hotel Congress and Fluxx Studio and Gallery, 414 E 9th Street. For more information go to www.tucsonfringe.org Photo taken: Saturday September 13, 2014

Fourth Annual Fringe Festival features plays and one-man shows.

September 13, 2014 6:32 pm Photos

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Photos: 9/11 Tower Challenge

Photos: 9/11 Tower Challenge

Firefighters from the Tucson Fire Department led over 300 law enforcement, firefighters, military personnel and residents in the first 9/11 Tower Challenge at Arizona Stadium early Thursday morning. Participants climbed 2,071 steps to memorialize the first responders who climbed stairs to save people at the World Trade Center in New York City. The event was hosted by the Greater Tucson Fire Foundation and proceeds from the stair climb will be given between the 100 Club of Arizona and the Arizona Fisher House in Tucson. Photo taken: Thursday September 11, 2014

The first 9/11 Tower Challenge took place at Arizona Stadium Thursday morning. 

September 11, 2014 10:59 am Photos

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Throwback Thursday: UA Rush Week in 1968

Throwback Thursday: UA Rush Week in 1968

Stephanie Light, right, greets a fellow sorority sister during Rush Week at University of Arizona in Sept. 1968.

Sorority pledges embrace members during Rush Week at University of Arizona in 1968.

September 10, 2014 9:30 pm Photos

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Photos: Devastating floods of 1983

The October 1983 flood was the largest flood of record in the Tucson area.

Between 6 ½ to 7 ½ inches of rain fell across the area in five days. The devastation stretched to Clifton/Morenci, Willcox, Safford and Nogales. More than a dozen people died.

September 09, 2014 12:15 am Photos

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Throwback Thursday: Sabino Lake in 1951

Throwback Thursday: Sabino Lake in 1951

People fish in the lake at Sabino Canyon north of Tucson in May, 1951, after it was stocked with trout for the first time.

The lake in Sabino Canyon was deepened and stocked with trout  in 1951 for hungry fishermen.

September 04, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Photos: Cronan the Barbarian

Photos: Cronan the Barbarian

Armen Dirtadian (General Ataxia) has costume designer Renee Cloutier help with an adjustment during a dress rehearsal performance of Cronan the Barbarian on Wednesday at The Gaslight Theatre. The show runs Sept. 4 through Nov. 9 with shows Tuesday through Thursday at 7 p.m.; Friday and Saturday at 6 p.m. and 8:30 p.m.; Sunday at 3 p.m. and 6 p.m.

Photos from The Gaslight Theatre's production of Cronan the Barbarian.

September 03, 2014 10:52 pm Photos

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Photos: Summer Beach Party

Photos: Summer Beach Party

As Danica Oliver, 8, left, patiently waits her turn, face-painter Becky Renfrow of The Wonderfools picks out colors to paint a night sky design for 10-year-old Mara Hawk-Stein at The Summer Beach Party at the MLK Lot on Saturday in downtown. Organizers made the summer pop-up beach with a sand volleyball court, trees, artificial grass and chairs to relax until the end of August with hopes of making it an annual event.

Photos from the Summer Beach Party at the MLK Lot in downtown.

August 30, 2014 9:49 pm Photos

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Burning Man festival

Burning Man festival

Burning Man participants walk through dust at the annual Burning Man event on the Black Rock Desert of Gerlach, Nev., on Friday, Aug. 29, 2014.

Burning Man participants walk through dust at the annual Burning Man event on the Black Rock Desert of Gerlach, Nev., on Friday, Aug. 29, 2014. Organizers call Burning Man the largest outdoor arts festival in North America, with its drum circles, decorated art cars, guerrilla theatrics and colorful theme camps. 

August 29, 2014 5:52 pmLoading…

Throwback Thursday: A night at the old 84 Truck Center

Throwback Thursday: A night at the old 84 Truck Center

Long-haul truckers take a break for some coffee, food and if they have time, a shower at the 84 Truck Center at 3320 N. Casa Grande Highway in June, 1959.

(Click on photo for slide show.) In 1959, long-haul trucking was dark and dangerous along U.S. 80, the two-lane highway through Tucson that was replaced by Interstate 10. The oasis on the road was a truck stop, like the 84 Truck Center, then at 3320 N. Casa Grande Highway, south of Prince Road. Tucson Citizen photographer Lew Raizk spent a night there in 1959. The 84 Truck Center stop eventually became Crazy Fred’s. It was demolished after a fire in 1993. The land is now vacant. 

August 28, 2014 9:00 am Related Loading…

Handy night drop for dogs and cats

Handy night drop for dogs and cats

Ray Hanson demonstrates the new night depository for dogs and cats at the Pima County Animal Shelter on Oct. 20, 1956. Lew Raizk / Arizona Daily Star

Ray Hanson demoonstrates the new night depository for dogs and cats at the Pima County Animal Shelter on Oct. 20, 1956. Previously, people would just set the animals loose on the grounds after business hours. Or worse, they would have to make a second trip! Thankfully the dogs the cats went into separate holding pens.

August 26, 2014 12:00 amLoading…

Museum grant to save collection of irreplaceable images

Museum grant to save collection of irreplaceable images

Jannelle Weakly, curator of the photographic collection at the Arizona State Museum, threads her way through the maze of photos in storage. The small room holds everything from modern transparency slides to old movie reels.

The $48,962 the Arizona State Museum received recently from the National Endowment for the Humanities won’t buy much, but it could go far.

The museum, repository for the state’s archaeological and cultural treasures, will use the money to plan for preservation of its photographic collection, as it recently did with its fiber and ceramic treasures.

It can be a long process. The new pottery vault required $2.4 million in grants and contributions. It took seven years to catalog and conserve the pots, and to build 3,200 square feet of climate-controlled vault and display space.

The museum’s collection of textiles, from baskets to sandals, is walking a similar path.

They are now ensconced in climate-controlled comfort. An exterior exhibition space has yet to be built.

The museum’s photographs, meanwhile, are stored as best they can be in museum-quality sleeves and boxes, but in conditions that speed their gradual deterioration.

The 500,000-plus collection of prints, negatives, slides and film dates to the early 1900s, with some even earlier than that, and spans photo technology from glass plates to digital, said Janelle Weakly, curator of the museum’s photo collections.

The films and stills document the digs that produced the museum’s archaeological finds and the making of its ethnological treasures.

The collection includes glass “lantern slides” used in lectures by some of the museum’s famous archaeologists and anthropologists, such as Emil Haury and Byron Cummings.

Weakly even has a “ballopticon” used to project the images, some of them hand-colored.

The most fragile pieces of the image collection were moved to the only room available to researchers in the pottery vault.

The grant will allow museum conservators to convene a team of architects, facilities managers and image-preservation specialists to plan for a new climate-controlled facility.

Teresa Moreno, the museum’s associate conservator, said the planning grant could lure additional money from the National Endowment, and further fundraising would be necessary to match it.

Humidity is the biggest threat to the collection, said Weakly. It ranges from 19 percent or so in winter to the 74.2 percent recorded on a muggy morning this week.

The building’s air handlers “belong in a museum,” joked Moreno.

“It’s an actual miracle that some of this technology that dates back to the 1920s still works,” said Patrick Lyons, the museum’s director.

The museum, designed by noted Tucson architect Roy Place, was completed in 1926 for use as the University of Arizona library.

It’s a great building but it was designed for a very specific purpose — to house the university’s book collection in a central stack of metal shelves, five stories high, that also serves as structural support for the building.

A master plan for complete renovation, devised in 2000, had a $60 million price tag.

That’s not happening any time soon, so the museum is bringing its facilities up to contemporary snuff in small steps — pots, textiles and now the plan to consolidate an office and two storerooms into a single repository for its photographic images.

Lyons is also making a separate push to remodel the lobby.

He said the acoustics are bad for tour groups, the lighting is not directed toward the exhibits and the exhibits themselves need updating.

His director’s council, the museum’s fundraising arm, has pledged money for planning and an anonymous donor has promised a substantial gift toward that project.

When all that is accomplished, said Lyons, the museum wants to replace its major exhibit, “Paths of Life,” with one that will tell the story of human habitation in the Southwest and how that story is uncovered by archaeologists and anthropologists.

Years of planning have already gone into that exhibit, originally slated for a new exhibition space at the city of Tucson’s Rio Nuevo redevelopment site.

Consultation with consultants and tribal representatives have enriched that story, said Lyons, but “it’s a different level of fundraising. We’ve never been in that territory.”

He wants to finish the other projects before trying to raise $6-to-$8 million for the new exhibit.

Meanwhile, he’s working with the university to confront some “deferred maintenance” on the historic building.

“The university has been a really good partner. They’ve kicked in air handlers, all sorts of other improvements along the way, whenever they can afford to do it, but the building still has a lot of challenges.”

Lyons said he’s amazed each change of season when the UA’s facilities team manages to coax the building’s heating and cooling back into operation, and he wasn’t all that surprised when the three-story-high, arched windows that are the building’s architectural signature began leaking in recent rains.

August 23, 2014 10:00 pm Photos

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Cactus versus car

Cactus versus car

This car was on the losing end of a tumbling Saguaro cactus near Tucson on Jan. 22, 1962.

This car was on the losing end of a tumbling Saguaro cactus near Tucson on Jan. 22, 1962. It's not known the circumstances of the incident, however there were high winds that day that caused damage elsewhere around Tucson. Coincidentally, a Salpointe High School football player was paralyzed the day before, on Jan. 21, when a Saguaro fell on him when he and a friend were trying to cut it down with a machete.

August 22, 2014 11:30 amLoading…

Photographer Will Seberger, 1981-2014

Photographer Will Seberger, 1981-2014

Stormy skies and a rainbow make for a dramatic background as the Arizona Heat stand for the Star Spangled Banner preceding their game against Texas on June 3, 2006 at Hi Corbett Field.

Tucson freelance photographer Will Seberger died on Aug. 17 in Tucson. He was 33 years old. Will was a University of Arizona graduate who became a ubiquitous presence at major news and sports events in Southern Arizona and Phoenix. His work was featured in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times, Time, Newsweek, Mother Jones and Sports Illustrated.

Will worked for the Arizona Daily Star in 2006-07, as he was establishing himself as a working freelance photojournalist. (Click the photo above for a gallery of his work for the Daily Star.)

August 21, 2014 10:50 am Related Loading…

Throwback Thursday: Blue Oyster Cult in Tucson

Throwback Thursday: Blue Oyster Cult in Tucson

Lead vocalist Eric Bloom during the Blue Oyster Cult concert at Tucson Community Center on Aug. 7, 1979. Riding the wave of songs like “Don’t Fear the Reaper” and “Godzilla” and a live album that sold 2 million copies, the group rode into Tucson in August 1979 for a concert at what was then called the Tucson Community Center.

B.O.C. and Godzilla destroy Tucson during a 1979 concert at the TCC.

August 14, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Gallery show features images just before Old Tucson fire

Gallery show features images just before Old Tucson fire

Platinum photograph of Richard Dean Anderson (MacGyver) in the bar at the Old Tucson Sound Stage during the filming of 'Birth of Legends'. Last photograph taken on the set before it burned down one week later. (April, 1995) 8x10 negative, Paramount Pictures). Photo by Gary Auerbach

Tucson photographer Gary Auerbach will have a solo exhibition covering 30 years of work at the Rancho Linda Vista Gallery in Oracle. Opening reception is 1 – 5pm, Sunday, Sept. 7. Exhibit runs Sept. 1 – 30.

Subjects include some of the last photographs taken on the sound stage and sets at Old Tucson before many of the original buildings at the historic movie studio burned in a massive fire in 1995. 

The images showcase a variety of printing methods from 8x10 and 11x14 large format negatives. Auerbach says they include platinum/palladium, Cibachrome, cyanotype, gum bichromate and even stereoscopic platinum among others.

August 12, 2014 9:26 amLoading…

Moonrise over Monsoon

Moonrise over Monsoon

Moonrise from behind gathering monsoon clouds at sunset on Saturday, Aug. 9. 

Moonrise from behind gathering monsoon clouds at sunset on Saturday, Aug. 9. Taken with a Canon SX260 point and shoot camera on automatic while standing on a picnic table in my backyard. Thanks to my five-year-old son for pointing out the scene from his chair at dinner!

August 11, 2014 12:22 pmLoading…

Photos: Resignation of Pres. Richard Nixon

Photos: Resignation of Pres. Richard Nixon

Richard M. Nixon waves a final farewell from a helicopter as he leaves the White House for the last time in the August 9, 1974.

Nixon stopped in Tucson during his political career. He was forced to resign on Aug. 8, 1974 due to the Watergate scandal.

August 08, 2014 10:30 am Photos

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Throwback Thursday: Mount Lemmon Air Force Station

Throwback Thursday: Mount Lemmon Air Force Station

Sitting at 9,150 feet, the Mount Lemmon Air Force Station was said to be the world’s highest radar installation in 1957. It was manned by the 684th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron, whose motto was “Who goes there?” Along with dozens of similar stations, it watched for Soviet aircraft before the advent of satellite surveillance. Nearly 250 officers staffed the 25-acre base, which featured a barracks with a “modern, electrically equipped kitchen.” For pictures of the base in 1957, go to tucson.com/retrotucson

"Who goes there" was the motto of the 684th Aircraft Control and Warning Squadron manning the Mt. Lemmon Air Force Station in 1957. The installation, at 9,150-feet, was said to be the world's highest radar installation. Along with dozens of other similar stations, it watched for enemy Soviet aircraft approaching the U.S. before the advent of satellite surveillance.

Nearly 250 officers staffed the 25-acre base, which featured a barracks with a "modern, electrically equipped kitchen," according to a Tucson Citizen story in 1957.

For pictures of the base in 1957, go to tucson.com/retrotucson

August 07, 2014 12:00 am Related Loading…

Throwback Thursday: A new teacher's first day in 1960

Throwback Thursday: A new teacher's first day in 1960

“I tossed and turned all night,” said Virginia Woodard about the night before her first day teaching at TUSD’s Mission View Elementary School in 1960. But she was able to make it through the day, managing the mental fatigue of dozens of little people. More photos at tucson.com/retrotucson

Virginia Woodard's first day of teaching first grade at TUSD's Mission View Elementary School in 1960 was no different than a new teacher in 2014. "I tossed and turned all night thinking about it, and was too nervious to eat any breakfast," she said in an interview published in the Tucson Citizen on Sept. 2, 1960. The report wrote "she almost decided to turn back after getting within a block of the school."

But she made it through the day despite running out of planned activities, getting more students than desks and managing the mental fatigue of dozens of little people.

See photos of Virginia Woodard's first day of teaching in 1960 at tucson.com/retrotucson.

July 31, 2014 12:00 am Related Loading…

Throwback Thursday: Old RR bridge replaced in 1968

Throwback Thursday: Old RR bridge replaced in 1968

The twisted remains of the Southern Pacific Railroad bridge over Cienega Wash after the suports were dynamited southeast of Tucson on March 12, 1968.

An elegant steel span 1903-vintage Southern Pacific Railroad bridge over the Cienega Wash was so badly damaged after a derailed freight crashed into it in 1968 that Sundt construction crews demolished and replaced the bridge. Less elegant, but much safer.

July 23, 2014 9:45 pm Photos

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Photos: 44 years of Benjie Sanders

Photos: 44 years of Benjie Sanders

Benjie Sanders, Arizona Daily Star photographer in 2013.

Arizona Daily Star photographer Benjie Sanders retires this month after 44 years at the newspaper.

July 02, 2014 10:39 am Photos

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Photos: Vietnam War training at Ft. Huachuca

Photos: Vietnam War training at Ft. Huachuca

Simulated Vietnam village for training at Ft. Huachuca on Oct. 5, 1966. 

Tucson Citizen photographers Mark Godfrey and Dan Tortorell documented soldiers training for deployment to Vietnam at Ft. Huachuca in 1966 and 1967. Training included a simulated Vietnamese village.

May 22, 2014 12:15 am Photos

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Photos: Tucson streets through the years

Photos: Tucson streets through the years

Traffic on East Grant Road in Feb., 1981. Arizona Daily Star file

A collection of photos of Tucson streets through the years from the archives of the Arizona Daily Star.

May 01, 2014 12:00 am Photos

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Photos: Old Tucson Studios before the fire

Photos: Old Tucson Studios before the fire

Much of Old Tucson Studios was destroyed in this 1995 fire.

Nearly 40-percent of Old Tucson, including many of the most-famous wood structures, was destroyed by fire on April 24, 1995. The park was rebuilt for tourists, but never regained the magic of its heyday as a Old West filmmaking mecca.

April 24, 2014 12:15 am Photos

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Photos: Linda Ronstadt in Tucson

Photos: Linda Ronstadt in Tucson

Linda Ronstadt arrives at Tucson International Airport on Sept. 16, 1976 for a benefit concert for the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.

Some Star/Citizen file photos of Tucson native Linda Ronstadt, one of the most popular female vocalists of all time. She is to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

April 10, 2014 12:05 am Photos

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About this blog

Thanks for visiting the Arizona Daily Star's photography blog. Our dedicated staff of five staff photographers have deep roots in Tucson and range in experience from two years to more than 30 years in photojournalism.

Email photo editor Rick Wiley at rwiley@tucson.com

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