Best City for Creatives, Writers and Artists

Tucson Voted Best City for Artists and Creatives
Tucson Voted Best City for Artists and Creatives

10 Cities That Creatives Should Move to That Are Not NYC or L.A.

With lush areas, that cater to rich people and a happening downtown attracting young adults in groves,  you’d never imagine it, but Tucson, Ariz. is becoming a great place for up-and-coming creatives to live.

Home to one of the country’s most fun party schools, that is paradoxically studious– The University of Arizona has been attracting the best and the brightest creatives to Tucson for years. Artists of all types who are catering to younger crowds are flourishing. But the city is also slick with wild wild west, cowboy, gunslingin’ desert history perfect for the budding mystery novelist. While the sun is down and the co-eds are at play, the thriving downtown music scene wherein artists like Calexico were born offers cheap amenities to up-and-coming bands plus primo weather for open-air shows and lugging gear back-and-forth as you please.

Located so close to L.A., San Diego, Las Vegas and Phoenix, Tucson has become a must-stop destination for all the big name musicians traveling through. Imagine seeing your favorite artist or DJ in an intimate venue with your closest friends? A luxury, a small, big city like Tucson can afford.

Tucson is quickly establishing itself in the technology world

Collaborative work spaces, trendy internet cafes, hole in the wall gems decorate the thriving, growing downtown area where you’ll find artist studios, galleries and performance venues. The magic of building community is a blossoming value to be discovered. There’s a reason they say Tucson is a small town in a big city.

Ramshackle mid-century hotels line the downtown streets and create an air of playful adventure. The historic, local favorite, Hotel Congress comes packaged with a story about being John Dillinger’s hide-out, a venue, and diner vibes near the trendy 4th Avenue.

Just imagine that Phoenix is like Dallas and Tucson is like Austin, only in a much cooler area, because, hello? Road trip to SoCal, and Las Vegas!

Complex.com’s list of the 10 Cities That Creatives Should Move to that aren’t LA or NYC:

  1. San Juan, Puerto Rico
  2. New Bedford, Mass.
  3. Providence, R.I.
  4. Tucson, Ariz.
  5. Athens, GA
  6. Hartford, Conn.
  7. Santa Cruz, Calif.
  8. Santa Fe, New Mex.
  9. Louisville, KY
  10. Big Sur, Calif.

La Estrella Bakery Recognized by Washington Post for Pan De Muerto

La Estrella Bakery Recognized by Washington Post for Pan De Muerto
La Estrella Bakery Recognized by Washington Post for Pan De Muerto

Congratulations to local paneria La Estrella Bakery on their national coverage by the Washington Post! Their article covers the making and baking of pan de muerto, a staple offering for Tucson’s Dia de los Muertos. Day of the dead.

La Estrella Bakery has been a Tucson touchstone since they opened 35 years ago on Halloween. “We actually opened on Oct. 31, 1985, just in time for Día de los Muertos,” Erica Franco told the WP. And we are so glad they did! Estrella is one of the top bakeries in Tucson and we are not surprised they’ve made headlines nationally.

The Ofrenda

If you’re new to the area, firstly welcome, and don’t know what Dia de los Muertos is don’t worry. We’re here to give you the basics. This holiday is celebrated primarily in Mexico and Latin America, but here in Tucson is holds a special place in our hearts. Since 1990 Tucson celebrates with an All Souls Procession. 

This holiday honors the lives of loves we have lost. Outside of the spectacle of the procession many make altars to dead loved ones. The Ofrenda. Lots of things can go on an altar, photos, mementos, and candy as examples. But many choose the pan de muerto, for which La Estrella Bakery is famous for. 

The bread takes its sweet time rising (pun intended.) Then it’s pulled and stretched into loaves or mini cakes with strips of dough meant to resemble bones on top. Once it rises again it goes into the oven to bake. Once out the delicious pastries get a generous brushing of locally sourced honey and cinnamon. You can stop there or use the sticky glaze as glue for brightly colored sugar crystals. 

If you don’t want one by now go read the Washington Post article or enjoy a PDF of the article below! Then run down to La Estrella Bakery to find out for yourself what all the buzz is about. 

La Estrella Bakery

520-741-0656

5266 S. 12th Ave

 & 100 S. Avenida Del Convento

The New York Times Mentions Saguaro National Park

The New York Times recently released an online, interactive list of 52 places around the world where travelers can be a part of the solution, rather than a problem. Because you know us, you know that we are only bringing this to your attention because they mention Tucson! Yep, the good Old Pueblo is in the media yet again. Okay, okay, more specifically they mention the beautiful Saguaro National Park. This national treasure can be found on both the east and west sides of Tucson. Nearly 2 million of the namesake cacti call these 2 parcels of land home and give our desert its distinctive look.
A plaque at the Saguaro National Park displays the cacti growth
A trail plaque from the Saguaro National Park.
As alluded to by the NYT article all 52 places on their list must have a problem to need a solution. In our case, the problem is that we have very few new saguaros, a species that is a notoriously slow grower. Think 75 years old to get its first arm, and not reaching its full height of 45 feet until 200 years old. So, a declining population of these stoic giants is a problem, not just for Tucson but for an entire ecosystem. The article highlights a local conservation project where volunteers work year-round pulling buffalo grass. Why does 1 weed need so much attention you might ask? There are a couple of reasons. The first is because it’s a non-native species that takes much-needed nutrients to other native plants. And secondly because due to climate change, we’ve been experiencing hotter summers. These withering temperatures dry out the buffelgrass and provide ample kindling for wildfires.
Saguaro National Park volunteers put on backpacks
Saguaro National Park volunteers get ready to tackle buffalo grass. Emma Gibson/AZPM
You can help mitigate the buffalo grass by volunteering with the Saguaro National Park. They organize clear-ups year-round. If you don’t want to be outside but still help out, that’s ok too! Find all volunteer opportunities here.

Buzzfeed ❤️ Tucson, And You Will Too!

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Not that we’re surprised but Tucson makes the news again! This time Buzzfeed author Anna Maria Glavan gives a glowing review of what makes Tucson the best city in Arizona. I mean, we know it, but it’s always nice to receive recognition from others.

The Reasoning

Joe Pagac's Latest Mural in Hamel Park
Joe Pagac’s Latest Mural in Hamel Park
Glavan lists 21 things that she believes makes Tucson the best city here in AZ. We’re going to look at a few to see if we agree! Actually, we’re just going to compare her list to ours and see how we do. Out of 21 reasons she lists, we’ve already covered these.
  1. Murals, near the top of her list was the mural hunt. It’s true, no matter where you go in Tucson you are bound to stumble across some amazing public art. 
  2. San Xavier Del Bac, truly a landmark here in the Old Pueblo. Known as the “White Dove of the Desert” it’s a must see for locals and visitors alike.
  3. La Estrella Baker, not surprising. Recently acknowledged by the Washington post for their amazing Pan de Muerto.
  4. Saguaro National Park, this is a go to for hikers and photographers.
  5. Arizona Sonora Desert Museum, yup we have that one too. It’s a great place to see a lot of native flora and fauna in one place.
  6. The Mexican Cuisine, Glavan even taunts that “I bet Phoenix can’t call itself a city of gastronomy.”
  7. Historic 4th Avenue, a great place to find an eclectic slice of Tucson.
  8. Shopping, there is no shortage of great places to shop, seriously take your pick.
  9. Tucson Museum of Art, this museum is bigger on the inside. It has a surprising collection of both regional and contemporary art with some classics thrown in for good measure.
  10. The Mercado, including the MSA Annex. Sprawling open markets to find coffee, food, and of course more shopping.
  11. Raspados! Of course our favorite place to get them is Sonoran Delights.

Our Conclusion

Maria Glavan has got everything we have and more. It’s time for us to go out and round out our own list. We hope this list is tempting you to make a visit, and if you’re already a local go check out something new!  Check out the original article on Buzzfeed! https://seetucsonhomes.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/21-Things-That-Prove-Tucson-Is-The-Best-City-In-Arizona.pdf