After Dark

For you night owls, here are some accessible outdoor evening adventures...


Owl Walk & Talk,
Saturday June 24th, 7pm – 8:30pm at Zanjero Park in Gilbert Desert Rivers Audubon OwlWatch volunteers will lead a tour of the burrowing owl habitat at Zanjero Park. Meet us in the park parking lot, 3785 South Lindsay Rd.,  Gilbert. We'll learn about the current status of the burrowing owls released April 2012 in association with our habitat partner, Wild at Heart. Enjoy a breezy, fun & informative evening! The starting time for this event will change with the seasons. Event is held one hour before sunset. Visit our Website for more information:

Arizona's Owls - Thursday and Saturday / June 22 and June 24 - Thursday / 6:30 - 8 p.m. and Saturday / 6 - 8:30 a.m. (field trip) Desert Botanical Gardens - Mostly denizens of the night, owls have fascinated people for eons. We will discuss their adaptations for their nightly haunts and look closely at the five species of owls found in Arizona. A field trip is planned to Zanjero Park, a successful burrowing owl relocation site in Gilbert. Transportation to the field trip site is not provided. Students are encouraged to bring binoculars. Instructed by Kathe Anderson. Limit 12.

Arizona's Bats - Tuesday / August 15 / 6:30 - 8:30 p.m. Desert Botanical Gardens - Though bats may seem scary, they are actually quite beneficial, eating a vast number of harmful insects. There are more than 28 species of bats in Arizona. Unfortunately, eastern U.S. bat populations are declining faster than any other land mammal. However, Arizona bat populations appear stable and some species have been increasing in numbers. Join Randy Babb, from Arizona Game and Fish, and learn more about these fascinating flying friends and how we can protect them. Limit 30.

Birds n' Beer--Every 3rd Thursday of the month, 5:30pm-7:30pm - Drop into the Audubon Center after work for a brew and learn a thing or two about birds. A different theme each month.

Nina Mason Pulliam Rio Salado Audubon Center at 3131 S Central Ave., in Phoenix. RSVP at Audubon's Facebook page or via email:


Painting With Light Photography Class - Wednesday / August 30 / 6 - 8:30 p.m. - Create unique photographic images through light painting. Join Ashley Lowery and learn to use light sources to paint images and words with long exposures and flashlights. Class time will be spent in the Garden, where participants will 'paint' the desert scene and plants with light. For digital SLR cameras with a tripod only. Students should bring a flashlight. Ths class is designed for beginner-level photographers and no prior experience is required. Limit 12. Desert Botanical Gardens - Classes fill quickly, sign up HERE

Dolly Steamboat, Canyon Lake - Twilight Dinner Cruise - The dinner cruises offer all of the grandeur of the daily cruise plus the ambiance of the twilight. Observe Canyon Lake wildlife as they settle in for the evening. The route extends another three to four miles upriver from our typical nature cruise, allowing guests different views and cliffs in excess of 1200’! While the sunset, moon and the stars take you to a special place both mentally and spiritually! Whether a romantic evening of two, or a unique and exceptional setting for any occasion.

Desert Belle, Saguaro Lake - Night Cruises with Music, Saturday evenings, check calendar for dates and times.


Stargazing for Everyone - The night sky is calling you! What will we see tonight? Planets? The rings of Saturn or the Moons of Jupiter? An exploding star? Constellations? Galaxies? Tony and Carole LaConte will guide you through the universe during this spectacular program!

Upcoming Star Party Events:

 Spur Cross Conservation Area, Saturday 
starting at 7:30 PM 

 Lake Pleasant Desert Outdoor Education Center  , starting at 7:30 PM 

 San Tan Mountain Park, starting at 7:30 PM

 Lake Pleasant Main Visitor Center  , starting at 7:30 PM

 Usery Mountain Park - , starting at 7:30 PM

 Estrella Mountain Park , 2017, starting at 7:30 PM


We have special equipment for wheelchair access viewing.  Please call and identify any special needs prior to attending one of our public programs.  Call Tony or Carole at (623) 979 - 1393  or e-mail to: 


 Go stargazing at the only wheelchair friendly observatory in Arizona!  The Observatory at Gilbert Water Ranch is managed by the East Valley Astronomy Club.  Located in the Gilbert Riparian Preserve next to the Gilbert Library (Greenfield and Guadalupe).  If you are hoping to look through the observatory's telescope, before you go, contact the East Valley Astronomy Club to find out what they will be looking at that night.  The scope needs to be pointed nearly straight up for someone in a wheelchair to reach the eyepiece.

The East Valley Astronomy Club sponsors a free public star party each month at the Riparian Preserve in Gilbert. The event is scheduled on the second Friday of each month, weather permitting. The star party begins at dusk. You are encouraged to attend and observe through member's telescopes.


First Fridays Art Walk - Phoenix

Is on the First Friday of every month from 6-10 p.m. and is the nation's largest, self-guided art walk!  Tour more than 70 galleries, venues and art-related spaces to see a variety of artwork and to enjoy the spirit and culture of the city as you mingle with thousands of other residents and visitors. If you'd like to get from place-to-place on one of the free event shuttles, those begin at the First Fridays headquarters at the Phoenix Art Museum,or you can jump on at any of the stops on each route.  For more details and a map showing which galleries are accessible go to Artlink's website at  Its too much to see in one night, so choose a route, have fun, then come back next month!  The Phoenix Light Rail stops at a few areas within the Art Walk.  From there you can hop on to First Fridays free event shuttles.  Go HERE to see the different shuttle routes. 

Downtown Chandler Art Walk-Third Friday of Every Month - 6PM to 10PM,  The Art Walk provides a fun family atmosphere where you can browse the many different types of art available from our talented artists.  It's a great opportunity to visit all of the unique establishments in downtown Chandler. Will feature live music from local talent.  For more information visit

Gilbert Art Walk - Has CHANGED TO MORNINGS! Mornings of first and third Saturdays of the month from Oct. 1 through March 16. From 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. in October, and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. during the rest of the year. Where: Water Tower Plaza, downtown Gilbert at Gilbert Road and Page Avenue. 

Scottsdale ArtWalk, every Thursday between 7 and 9 PM, is along Main Street, just west of Scottsdale Road, and along Marshall Way north and south of Indian School Road up to Stetson Drive and ARTScene at the Waterfront. There are plenty of nearby free parking areas, and easy access to local hotels or famed Scottsdale eateries via Scottsdale Trolleys or horse-drawn carriages. A calendar of individual gallery events and more information is available on the Scottsdale Arts District website


Photo of Rotunda/Throne Room, from park website.
Kartchner Caverns - Cool off in a cave!  Temperatures average around 70 degrees F. but the humidity averages around 99% so it will feel much warmer (at least its NOT "a dry heat").  Read ACCESSIBILITY details HERE.

Rotunda/Throne Tour - Length: ½ mile. Time: 1½ hours. (This tour is currently open. The cave is closed Dec. 25. Both caves will be closed Sept. 16-20, 2013.)  This tour has been open since 1999! It is half of a mile in length and takes approximately an hour and a half to complete, 50 minutes of which is underground. Discover the role that water plays in creating the caverns. You will see the discoverers' original trail, 45,000-year-old bat guano, delicate formations and “Kubla Khan,” the largest column formation in Arizona.  Nearby Birding - San Pedro River Riparian Natural Area, Patagonia Lake, Sonoita Creek.

Wheelchairs: Most motorized and manual wheelchairs may be used in the cave but due to the limits of the trail dimensions, certain chairs may be restricted. Wheelchairs with a seat width of 18” or less and an overall width of 30” are permissible.  To make Cave Tour Reservations and Book Tickets: Reserve online (24-hours) or call (520) 586-2283. You can call 7 days a week, from 8 am to 5 pm MST. To make same day Cave Tour reservations (based on availability) please call (520) 586-2283.
Kartchner Caverns website.

Read a detailed review of the accessibility at Kartchner Caverns by Loren Worthington, at Accessing Arizona.

Do you have an event, bird walk, meeting, or nature walk that belongs on this calendar? Please send info to

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