Prescott’s Courthouse Square – gathering place for families and friends
For that reason, our hearts today are back in Prescott, Arizona. Our travels have taken us to this warm and welcoming town three times in the last two years. Prescott is a vibrant college town draped in old west history about an hour and a half north of Phoenix.
By now, you’ve probably heard of it. Prescott has been in both national and international headlines the last two days because the community is mourning the deaths of 19 firefighters based here – 14 of whom were in their 20’s. They were highly trained members of an elite team, known as “Hotshots” and were killed on Sunday while battling a blaze that today continues to defy efforts to contain it.
So on this Travel Tuesday we want to pay tribute to this wonderful town, while joining with countless others who are sending prayers and condolences to the entire community.
Prescott captures you with its old west hospitality. No matter who you meet there or why, there’s a warm feeling about the memory of that encounter.
For example, one evening last December we paused to look at the menu posted at a café near the Square. We chatted with the owner briefly, saying we’d already eaten.
The next morning though we returned and she called out, “Oh, it’s good to see you two again! Glad you came back for breakfast!!” (It was a hearty plate of Huevos Rancheros we were served, I might add.)
It is a town that normally this time of year is focused on its July 4th rodeo. They’ve held one here every year for more than 125 years. This monument to rodeo riders is outside its City Hall.
The town’s filled with public art that is touching and whimsical – you never know what you might discover when strolling its sidewalks or entering a store.
These two were inside a small mall, and we found the delightful fellow below guess where?
Outside the public library!
You might recall a post I wrote about Prescott last December when I declared it PC: Pure Christmas! Prescott is Arizona’s self-proclaimed Christmas City and we believed them after watching one of several Christmas parades they have each December!
What really struck us was the ‘neighborliness’ of the townsfolk. Although a vibrant, growing community there still exists a small town feel; the kind where neighbors know each other – they celebrate the good times and help each other through the bad.
And that may be what helps this town get through the coming days.
How You Can Help:
A Facebook page has been created honoring the firefighters. Click the link and ‘like’ the page.
NBC News Los Angeles reported on several ways to donate to funds for the firefighters’ families. Click the link for article.
Huffington Post has also listed ways to donate. Click the link.