Empire Ranch Foundation Presents 1880s to Steampunk

The Empire Ranch Foundation is hosting “1880s to Steampunk,” a traditional saloon party on January 30, 2016. The fundraiser includes a whiskey tasting, costume contest, music, casino games, and a live auction. Tickets include a buffet dinner and $100 in “gambling chips.”EMP15_1012 1800sToSteampunk_flyer-4.jpg

“1880s to Steampunk” will be held at the Savoy Opera House from 6pm to 10pm. Tickets are $55 for members and $65 for non-members.

The Empire Ranch Foundation is a non-profit volunteer organization that was established in 1997. Acting in cooperation with the Bureau of Land Management (BLM), the purpose of the Foundation is to protect, restore, and sustain the Empire Ranch historical buildings and landscape as an outstanding western heritage and education center.

For more information on the Empire Ranch Foundation, please visit their website.

Desert Diamond Casino – West Valley Opens Its Doors

12370978_422880541246318_6964388706920111621_oThe new Desert Diamond Casino – West Valley opened its doors to the public on Sunday, Dec. 20, 2015. Located at 9431 W. Northern Ave., east of the Loop 101 freeway near Glendale, Ariz., the Desert Diamond Casino – West Valley is just minutes away from the University of Phoenix Stadium and the Westgate Entertainment District. The new casino is open 24 hours per day, seven days per week.

Construction of the project employed more than 1,300 workers and involved approximately 80 companies, with an investment of over $200 million by the Tohono O’odham Gaming Enterprise. More than 500 new, permanent jobs have been created at the facility. Support from the West Valley public has been overwhelming, and the cities of Glendale, Peoria, Tolleson, Surprise, and El Mirage have all endorsed the project.

This is just the beginning for the Desert Diamond Casino – West Valley. Construction of the site will continue in phases over multiple years. Infrastructure for the next phases has already been installed. Planned future additions include an expanded gaming floor, hotel, convention and meeting space, retail, restaurants, and other amenities. Once fully complete, the facility will create more than 3,000 permanent jobs in the community and have an annual economic impact of more than $300 million.

7th Annual Sahuarita Pecan Festival Draws Nearly 25,000

370A8813The 7th Annual Sahuarita Pecan Festival, held on Nov. 14, welcomed nearly 25,000 guests, topping last year’s attendance of 20,000. The 2015 Festival raised almost $15,000 benefitting student organizations and community partners. Approximately 700 pounds of food was collected for the Green Valley Sahuarita Community Food Bank; in exchange for canned food, guests were able to ride a horse-drawn wagon through the orchard for a harvest demonstration.

More information on the Sahuarita Pecan Festival can be found here and on Facebook and Twitter.

FICO’s Sahuarita Farms Plan Approved by Council

The Sahuarita Town Council unanimously approved FICO’s UnknownSahuarita Farms Specific Plan and Development Agreement on Oct. 13. This 50-year Specific Plan will guide the development of FICO’s property to create a space where people will want to live, work, and play, and will include trails, open space, and river enhancements. FICO first submitted the Sah
uarita Farms plan to the Town of Sahuarita in 2011. The Oct. 13 decision comes after many public meetings and open houses, governmental hearings, and stakeholder meetings. In March 2014, Pima County approved the plan covering the portion of the FICO farm in unincorporated Pima County.

The adoption of this plan by the Town of Sahuarita underscores the benefit to the community of this comprehensive, long-term strategy for growth. More information on Sahuarita Farms can be found here.


Topping Off the West Valley Resort

Construction workers sign their names to the final steel beam.

Hundreds of people from the Tohono O’odham Nation and dignitaries from across the West Valley gathered at the West Valley Resort construction site for the topping off ceremony on March 12, 2015. This marked a major milestone in construction as the final steel beam was added to the framework of the interim gaming facility.

Millions of dollars have already been invested in site preparation, concrete, and steelwork. More than four dozen companies have been retained for construction of the interim facility, with 1,300 workers contracted for the project that is set to be completed in the fourth quarter of 2015.

Once completed, more than 500 new jobs will be created to operate the interim facility. It will feature 1,089 slots, food court, bar, and rewards center, and will include a 1,100 space surface parking lot. While this facility is operating, construction of the $400 million project will continue.