What's It Like Living in Scottsdale, Arizona?

by Jeffrey Hauser - Date: 2007-02-10 - Word Count: 748 Share This!

I moved to Scottsdale in August of 1976. So, some may call me a native. But to those of you who have never heard or Scottsdale, let me tell you why it's so famous. It was the winter home of Frank Lloyd Wright who built Taliesin West as his retreat. It was a local favorite of Charles Wrigley as well. More recently, it is home to Mike Tyson, Michael Jordon, Charles Barkley, and Muhammad Ali, who all have homes nearby. Robert Kiyosaki (Rich Dad, Poor Dad) and Go-Daddy (Domain provider) have their businesses here. It's the location for the TPC golf course, a favorite of the pro tour. We are the spring training home to the San Francisco Giants and neighboring towns host the Chicago Cubs, along with over half the major league baseball teams. Next year, nearby Glendale will host a little event known as the Superbowl. We also hold the Barrett-Jackson auction of classic cars every year.

We border Phoenix to the west, Tempe to the south and Mesa to the East. The population is about 250,000 and our income is about $20,000 over the national average. We have Scottsdale Community College, home of the Fightin' Artichokes (no kidding) and a private airport.

But it's our weather that brings in the newcomers. The Phoenix area summers are infamous for baking at a crisp 105 to 110 degrees from June through September. But the rest of the year we can be in the 60's through 80's with very low humidity. It almost never snows or has frost. Every thing and place is well air conditioned to offset the scorching temperatures. We are a desert so rain is rare. We average less than seven inches a year and most days are sunny and cloud-free. The only pollution comes from neighboring cities and traffic that plods along one of our two freeways. We have a few wonderful malls with high-end designer shops and the normal Wal-Mart shopping centers. But, what sets us apart from many other cities, is our environment.

As I stated earlier, we were built on a desert, more specifically, the Sonoran Desert. So we boast scenic vistas of mountains and arroyos, cactus plants and tall saguaros. There are palm trees of varying sizes that can grow 50 feet tall. Many homes use xeroscaping which excludes grass and non-native plants. Rockscaped yards are common. Another common feature are the ranch-style homes built on a single-level. Many will have earthen-hued tile roofs and stucco exteriors to combat the sun. There are also in-ground pools in abundance. Here it is not a luxury. Most homes have central air conditioning and ceiling fans. Tile floors are an ordinary sight at every price range, many composed of Mexican tile. Citrus trees; orange lemon, and grapefruit, grow everywhere. Unfortunately, so do scorpions, rattlesnakes, and black widows. We are home to gila monsters and other smaller lizards. Add in roadrunners and coyotes and you have the wildlife picture.

So, why do I like Scottsdale so much? Well, it's far different than Red Bank, New Jersey, where I was raised. I enjoy the sunny days, western landscape, lack of crowds, and relaxed lifestyle. It has a bit of California overtones without the beach, although I can drive to Rocky Point and lay on a Mexican beach in 4.5 hours or San Diego in 6 hours. I can be in Las Vegas in 45 minutes by plane. There's great Mexican food, modern buildings, low crime, good schools, and state-of-the-art medical facilities. Every year, we get many retirees from the mid-west. Most have vacationed here for years, just waiting for the opportunity to get a winter home here.

You may be wondering what's the point of me telling you all this? Am I a shill for the Department of Tourism, encouraging you to visit or move here? Heck no! Although I love living here, I hope you stay right where you are. I hope not a single new sole moves here to crowd our streets and businesses. But that's not going to happen, I'm afraid. So, I will point out the downsides. Homes and apartments aren't cheap, summer is a bitch, we have only two freeways, one with photo-radar to nab speeders, and, unfortunately, Mike Tyson. That should stop you dead in your tracks. Did I mention that Bob Crane of Hogan's Heroes fame was killed in a Scottsdale Motel? Hopefully, that's the final straw. Now stop whining, get back to your chores and clear the snow piled on your driveway.

Related Tags: living, arizona, desert, scottsdale

Jeffrey Hauser was a sales consultant for the Bell System Yellow Pages for nearly 25 years. He graduated from Pratt Institute with a BFA in Advertising and has a Master's Degree in teaching. He had his own advertising agency in Scottsdale, Arizona and ran a consulting and design firm, ABC Advertising. He has authored 6 books and a novel, "Pursuit of the Phoenix." His latest book is, "Inside the Yellow Pages" which can be seen at his website, http://www.poweradbook.com Currently, he is the Marketing Director for http://www.thenurseschoice.com, a Health Information and Doctor Referral site.

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