Flagstaff is a city located in northern Arizona, in the southwestern United States. As of July 2006, the estimated population of the city is 58,213, with a Metropolitan Statistical Area population of 124,953. It is the county seat of Coconino County. In 2005, Men's Journal named Flagstaff as No. 2 on its Best Places to Live list, and National Geographic cited the city in its list of "10 Great Towns That Will Make You Feel Young." The city's name commemorates a Ponderosa Pine tree that was made into a tall flagpole by members of a scouting party from Boston (known as the "Flagstaff Tea Party"), on July 4, 1876, to celebrate the United States Centennial. Flagstaff lies near the southwestern edge of the Colorado Plateau and along the western side of the largest contiguous ponderosa pine forest in the continental United States. At an elevation of 6,910 feet (2,106 m), Flagstaff is located adjacent to Mount Elden, just south of the San Francisco Peaks, the highest mountain range in the state of Arizona. The San Francisco Peaks (known locally as "The Peaks") consist of several summits, including Humphreys, Agassiz, Fremont, and Doyle Peaks. Humphreys Peak, also known as Mount Humphreys, is one corner of this ancient volcano and the highest point in Arizona at 12,633 feet (3,850 m). It is about 10 miles (16 km) north of Flagstaff.Flagstaff's early economy consisted primarily of the lumber, railroad, and ranching industries. Today, the city remains an important railroad and ground transportation center, and is home to Lowell Observatory and Northern Arizona University. Flagstaff also has a strong tourism sector, owing to its proximity to such destinations as Grand Canyon National Park, Oak Creek Canyon, and historic Route 66.
Tucson is the seat of Pima County, Arizona, United States, located 118 miles (188 km) southeast of Phoenix and 60 miles (98 km) north of the Mexican border. As of July 1, 2006, a Census Bureau estimate puts the city's population at 518,956, with a metropolitan area population at 946,362. In 2005, Tucson ranked as the 32nd-largest city and 52nd-largest metropolitan area in the U.S. It is the largest city in southern Arizona and the second largest in the state after Phoenix. Major incorporated suburbs of Tucson include Oro Valley and Marana northwest of the city, South Tucson (surrounded by Tucson), and Sahuarita south of the city. Communities in the vicinity of Tucson (some within or overlapping the city limits) include Casas Adobes, Catalina, Catalina Foothills, Flowing Wells, Green Valley, Marana, Tanque Verde, New Pascua, and Vail. The name Tucson originates via Spanish from the O'odham, meaning "Black Base," a reference to the mostly volcanic mountains on the west side of the city. The most notable of these mountains is Sentinel Peak, better known as "A Mountain" because it sports a large letter A in honor of the nearby University of Arizona, situated in west central Tucson. Tucson is sometimes referred to as "The Old Pueblo."Tucson was probably first visited by Paleo-Indians, known to have been in southern Arizona by about 12,000 years ago. Recent archaeological excavations near the Santa Cruz River have ocated a village site dating from 4,000 years ago. The floodplain of the Santa Cruz River was extensively farmed during the Early Agricultural period, circa 1200 BC to AD 150. These people constructed irrigation canals and grew corn, beans, and other crops while gathering wild plants and hunting animals. The Early Ceramic period occupation of Tucson saw the first extensive use of pottery vessels for cooking and storage. The groups designated by archaeologists as the Hohokam lived in the area from AD 600-1450 and are known for their red-on-brown pottery. Jesuit missionary Eusebio Francisco Kino visited the Santa Cruz River valley in 1692, and founded the Mission San Xavier del Bac about 7 miles (12 km) upstream from the site of the settlement of Tucson in 1700. The Spanish established a presidio (fort) on August 20, 1775 and the town came to be called "Tucson." Tucson became a part of Mexico after Mexico gained independence from Spain in 1821. Following the Gadsden purchase in 1853, Tucson became a part of the United States of America, although the American military did not formally take over control of the community until March 1856. From August 1861, until mid-1862, Tucson was the capital of the Confederate Arizona Territory. Until 1863, Tucson and all of Arizona was part of New Mexico Territory. From 1867 to 1879, Tucson was the capital of Arizona Territory. The University of Arizona, located in Tucson, was founded in 1885. By 1900, 7,531 people lived in the city. At about this time, the US Veterans Administration had begun construction on the present Veterans Hospital. Many veterans who had been gassed in World War I and were in need of respiratory therapy began coming to Tucson at this time, due to the clean dry air. The population increased gradually to 13,913 in 1910, 20,292 in 1920, and 36,818 in 1940. In 2006 the population of Pima County, in which Tucson is located, passed one million while the City of Tucson's population was 535,000. During the territorial and early statehood periods, Tucson was Arizona's largest city and commercial area, whereas Phoenix was the seat of state government and agriculture. The establishment of Tucson Municipal Airport, the first in the world, increased its prominence. By the 1920s-30s, Phoenix outgrew Tucson and has continued to expand. Tucson has still been growing but at a slower pace.
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Sedona is a city and community that straddles the county line between Coconino and Yavapai counties in the northern Verde Valley region of the U.S. state of Arizona. According to 2005 Census Bureau estimates, the population of the city is 11,220.Sedona's main attraction is its stunning array of red sandstone formations, the Red Rocks of Sedona. The formations appear to glow in brilliant orange and red when illuminated by the rising or setting sun. The Red Rocks form a breathtaking backdrop for everything from spiritual pursuits to the hundreds of hiking and mountain biking trails. Among the rock formations is one that closely resembles the character "Snoopy" (from the popular Peanuts comic strip) lying on top of his doghouse. Another nearby rock is said to resemble "Lucy", also from Peanuts. Other landmark rock formations include Coffeepot Rock, Bell Rock, Cathedral Rock, the Mittens, the Cow Pies, and the Rabbit Ears.There are several events that are hosted annually in the Sedona area, including:
Sedona Miracle annual non-profit fundraiser September 15-16th
Sedona International Film Festival on February 28 to March 4.
Sedona Marathon will take place on Saturday February 10.
Sedona's renowned Jazz on the Rocks Festival at Radisson Poco Diablo on September 26 to September 30.
Politically, Uptown Sedona (the part in Coconino County) and West Sedona (the Yavapai County portion) form the City of Sedona. Originally founded in 1902, the town was incorporated into a city in January 1988. The Village of Oak Creek, despite its location seven miles to the south and outside Sedona city limits, is a significant part of the community.Sedona is named after Sedona Miller Schnebly (1877–1950), the wife of the city's first postmaster, who was celebrated for her hospitality and industriousness. Many of Hollywood's classic westerns were filmed in or near Sedona. The red rock buttes and desert landscape provided a striking setting for these films. Most notably is 1950’s Broken Arrow starring James Stewart. A number of its shooting locations can still be visited via off-road trail.
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