Life Along the Streetcar with Tom Heath from The Heath Team Nova Home Loans

This week we discuss the Spanish move from Tubac to Tucson and return to the place where art and history meet

Today is February 2nd, my name is Tom Heath and you’re listening to “Life Along the Streetcar”.

Each and every Sunday our focus is on Social, Cultural and Economic impacts in Tucson’s Urban Core and we shed light on hidden gems everyone should know about. From A Mountain to the UArizona and all stops in between. You get the inside track- right here on 99.1 FM, streaming on– we’re also available on your iPhone or Android using our very own Downtown Radio app.

Reach us by email [email protected] — interact with us on Facebook @Life Along the Streetcar and follow us on Twitter @StreetcarLife

Our intro music is by Ryanhood and we exit with Tropical Beach

We start today with an inaugural event.

Where Art and History Meet

We’ve told the story on this show of the red haired, Irish born, Spanish soldier, Hugo O’Connor and his selection for the Presidio San Agustin which led to the formation of the city of Tucson. Today, we go back in time to uncover the world forces which pushed the Spanish north.

Captain de Anza had just left the Tubac Presidio with over 200 of its residents on a journey which would end in the founding of San Francisco. The Russian Empire was moving west and making a strong surge to control the Pacific Coast. Tensions with the Apaches were growing and war was on the horizon. It was the mid-18th century and the Spanish decided to press onward from their Tubac mission and fort.

We called up Shannon Stone, the Executive Director of Tubac Presidio State Historic Park and Museum to learn more about the history and connection of Tubac and Tucson. Including an upcoming Festival of Arts and a Javelina Auction


Tom Heath: Good morning Tucson. It’s a beautiful Sunday and the Old Pueblo. Thank you for spending part of your brunch our with us on your downtown Tucson the community sponsored rock and roll radio station this week. We discussed the Spanish move from to back to Tucson and we return to the place where art and history meet. 

Tom Heath: Today is February seconds o2o to 2020. My name is Tom Heath and you are listening to Life along the streetcar each and every Sunday. Our focus is on social cultural and economic impacts in Tucson’s Urban core and we shed light on hidden gems. Everyone should know about from a mountain to you Arizona it all stops in between you get the inside track right here on 99.1 FM streaming on Downtown Radio dot org also available on your iPhone or Android using our very own downtown. App. You can take us wherever you go if you simply download Downtown Radio Tucson. And then you’ll always have us in your pocket. If you want to get us on the show. Our email address is contact at Life along 

Tom Heath: the streetcar dot-org many of you interact with us over there on Facebook at Life along the streetcar some of you follow us on Twitter and I hope all of you check out our past episodes on our webpage Life along the streetcar dot-org. We’re going to start today’s a news with an inaugural event. Imago Dei Middle School was founded in 2005 by the Reverend Susan Anderson Smith and the Reverend Ann Sawyer and their purpose is to address inequality of educational and life opportunities for low-income children in Tucson in 2018. We sat down with head of school Cameron Taylor to get a glimpse of what’s made them so successful and you can hear that complete. You on our website there? We mentioned earlier lifelong streetcar dot-org. The interviews called breaking the cycle of poverty. And what we learned is that the students of Imago Dei they go on to successful high school college and private sector careers, and there is no coincidence that the effort of the staff faculty and volunteers to make 

Tom Heath: the educational experience inclusive of the entire family. Is a big factor in that success. Remember the founding principles were to address inequality in educational and life opportunities? Margaret is not. Look at the academic skills of a child in a vacuum. They look at the life of the child. They keep longer school hours up until five. I believe maybe even a little bit later to accommodate a working class base. They take no federal funding they work off of donations and fundraisers that they provide a high quality education with multiple teachers and classrooms a low student to teacher ratio and they work with a lot. The students that come through our Refugee system students are extremely intelligent sometimes struggle with our English language. So the low teacher-to-student ratio or is it deloused teacher-to-student ratio? No, it’s the high teacher to student ratio is a part of their success. It’s the holistic approach next Saturday Mago days hosting an event to showcase the entrepreneurial 

Tom Heath: families of the school with a family Emily showcase will be information on the businesses of the Imago Dei families along with activities and crafts for kids and a glimpse of life in the school. So it’s a three-hour event its planned from February 8 on February 8th from 9 to noon and it’s at the school which is kind of tucked away there on Sixth Avenue across from the Ronstadt Transit Center. It’s 55 North 6th Avenue for those of you with Google Maps. Now, the tagline of this inaugural event is Bringing our school families together to meet and share resources with each other. I did check in the general public is not only invited but they’re encouraged to come and check out the amazing work being done. And to see proof that a good education is not solely dependent upon Financial Resources. It takes a village and that Village will be on display next Saturday at Imago Dei. 

Tom Heath: In the past, we’ve told you the story of the red-haired irish-born Spanish Soldier Hugo O’Connor and his selection for the Presidio Saint Augustine, which has led to the formation of the City of Tucson and Hugo Connors considered the father of Tucson because of his decision in 1775 to bring the Spanish Fort here. Well today we’re going to go back in time to uncover the world forces which The Spanish North Captain deanza had just left the to back Presidio with over 200 of its residents on a journey which would end in the founding of the city of San Francisco the on the trails. We know it the Russian Empire was moving West to making a strong surge to control the Pacific coast tensions with the Apaches were growing war was on the horizon. There was the mid-eighteenth century and it was then that the Spanish decided to press. Us onward from there to back Mission and Presidio. We called up Shannon Stone the executive director of to back Presidio State Historic Park and Museum to learn more about 

Tom Heath: the history and this connection of two back in Tucson. And we also learn about some really cool upcoming events like their Festival of Arts and a painted javelina auction. I’m Sharon Stone on the executive director here at the to back Presidio in Tubac Arizona where Arizona’s first state park. Although we are a partner park now, so we’re run by a friends group and about about 50 volunteers a month on the only paid staff. And yeah, I love the Presidio is 11 acre park with eight Gardens. Buildings four of them are historic and the Tucson Presidio came right after us they were 1752 after there was a an issue with some of the natives the pima’s here and the autumns for tumacacori and that was in 1751. So New Spain decided there needed to be a fort built because the main mission was moving North that was always the mission of the the Spanish. And at the time you had Russia already established a fort in Northern California Fort Ross. You had France coming in from you know, Central north northern, 

Tom Heath: you know Central Area you had England and then you have Spain coming up from the south. So that was this true, you know War over who would so to speak be claimed what is now would be America today and so the state the the standard Going to move north so with to back if I understand correctly. What I hear you saying is that the what came first were the missions that that all where they are but for security reasons the Spanish decided to put a presidio or a fort in close proximity to protect their citizens is that is that accurate right and snow you’d sent the missions first it was, you know, gold glory and God you wanted to send the missions you wanted to send. Ting and team that would look for gold and silver those source of vitamins and then you wanted to convert the natives because then you wouldn’t have to send people from Spain over there to have a settlement but that’s what what to back would be we would be Arizona’s first European settlement after you know 1691 until 1751 father Kino 

Tom Heath: at tumacacori. Have his Reign and that’s when things would get kind of the tension would build and so Spain figured. Well when you have to beat the Russians. Anyway, we’re moving North. Anyway, we have to really try to keep the temperament of the natives down. And so we might as well send New Spain, you know, we need to claim this as our own and have a settlement here. And so that’s what they did. They send soldiers about 50 soldiers and and we the whole the whole town. In itself was the Presidio the forks and the ruins that we have on display today. That’s where the captain live. Those were his quarters with his family. And Bell during was the first commander of the fort and then of course, we have the famous on so Juan Bautista de on Zone which is whom the trail in the National Historic Trails named after it starts in Mexico and goes all the way to San Francisco and tuba canio’s people from to back about Of them would walk for months from October until March and they would found what 

Tom Heath: is today known as San Francisco. They were people from to back and it was because of one Bautista de anza’s the fort’s the ruins of it are still on display along with the second oldest one-room schoolhouse in Arizona. We have a fantastic Museum covers about 2,000 years worth of really unbelievable history. Here. We Have Otero Hall which is our art gallery because of course modern days to back is where art and history mate. So, we really try to incorporate a lot of Art and to our history and then we have the Rojas house. It’s a home lived in by a family for over a hundred years on display because the population here would kind of increase and then decrease their be that’s in flux. And then everyone would leave either it was for the Civil War or the Gold Rush. There were a lot of reasons. Not everyone but a lot of people would leave and that left the the town and the Presidio Presidio vulnerable. So it just got to the point where Tucson was getting to be a bigger and better City and they 

Tom Heath: decided let’s just take the Ford up there. It was just a better location and eventually when the railroads would come, you know, that was even better for for minors and things like that. So the idea was not to run them consecutively like they weren’t trying to To staff so to speak to different presidio’s they were physically moving in a direction and and exactly okay now are the founding father that we talk about quite a bit here in Tucson of the pursuit of Saint Augustine Hugo O’Connor was he stationed in to back or what did he have any connection to that? And he really had made a name for himself on the frontier of New Spain, but as far as I know he was not stay. And here he was here, but he was never in charge of anything. It was Belcher rain and it was Juan Bautista De Anza the second and those were the two commanders in Chief here that really regulated everything. And yeah, he was of Irish descent that which is just very interesting and you know that you have this great mixture of 

Tom Heath: different cultures and that’s what’s great about Southern Arizona because now we can talk about an Irish person one we’re talking about Out Spanish history when we’re talking about, you know Apache history and it’s just it’s all this Melting Pot here in Southern Arizona. So you have a red-haired Irishman serving in the Spanish Army trying to beat the the Russian the Russians to a land acquisition exactly and all the while we have our native population trying to figure it out as well. So we’re very very interesting cross section. I don’t think when we talk about the Spanish moving through here the Or the Russians get name very often. Hey, how long have you been with with with the park? So I’ve been here for about two and a half years as the Director. I came from Degrassi Gallery. I was their education director for the last 10 years before that and I just have a real passion for the history here in Southern Arizona. I got my degree in history from of course you of a go cats. I’m working currently 

Tom Heath: working on my masters and Studies through the Harvard Extension college and I just I just I really I really feel my purpose here is to teach people about the history and and just kind of open their eyes to not only things that were and you know, but also empathy and tolerance because all of these stories we all we all can relate to each one of these characters and the history and its really fascinating and it just kind of helps you understand current. Perspectives and the future we’re talking with Shannon Stone. She’s the executive director of the two back Presidio State Historic Park and Museum getting a little bit of history that connection of two back in Tucson and we’ll be back in just a moment with some really cool events that are coming up here in very short order, but I want to remind you that my name is Tom Heathen. You are listening to Life along the streetcar on Downtown Radio 99.1 FM and available for streaming on Downtown Radio. EO dot-org. All right, we’re going to jump back 

Tom Heath: into our phone interview with Shannon Stone of the to back Presidio Museum down there and to back Arizona and she’s going to tell us about some really cool events coming up including their Festival of Arts, which is now in its I think sixth decade…

Shannon Stone:  it is going to be our 61st Annual Festival this year. It’ll be put on by Vermillion promotions and they’re bringing in So much talents a lot of new artists that you back that have never been here. We’re probably going to have over 200 Artisans and of course beer garden brought to you by the odds of Trail Coalition will have a ton of food lot o lot of things to come and do and see in entertainment live entertainment and it’s free. There’s no admission is $8 for parking per vehicle. But all the money all the eight dollars goes to to support local organizations here. I think we have over 10,000 people attend last year the biggest festival or this Festival in Southern Arizona and the longest-running.

Tom Heath: Are the artists selected or they curated for any specialty or generally all mediums? 

Shannon Stone: It’s a juried event and it Showcases of you know artists from around the country and sometimes around the world. So artist you apply here, and I don’t know, I’m not as familiar with the process of applying but this will be the one of the largest festivals we’ve ever had like a series of exhibitors and you’re looking to maybe purchase art or are you having interactions with how the hell this artwork came to be created or how how the area has evolved through that that art and history combination, you know some of the artists they’ll actually be painting or sculpting or showing you how they do whatever medium is that they work in and of course there’s a over a hundred shops here in the village on crop of just the booths that will be on display and fine art galleries here. It’s a great opportunity to talk to artists if you are interested in this becoming an artist or having a booth here next year. This is a perfect opportunity to do that. 

Tom Heath: There’s another vet coming up. I don’t really know anything about this but someone told me that it was a kind of fun little I guess it’s an event but an experience that Javelinas the Tubac.

Shannon Stone: It’s fabulous. Yeah, can you 

Tom Heath: come can you tell me more about what what what that actually is. 

Shannon Stone: Yeah, probably need to back project is a public art except exhibit. It’s about 50 javelina statues. So there’s large ones Mamas and Papas and babies and they’re all painted by local artists and these went on to play in October and they will continue to be on display through March of 2020. Now most of them will still continue to be on display after that. But 20 of them will be auctioned off on April 4th at the center of Arts here in to back and there’s about 37 javelinas located here in two back three javelinas off the Frontage Road near tumacacori. And of course, there’s six at the Tucson International Airport one at the desert museum in Tucson one at Mesquite Valley Growers in Tucson and to in Green Valley, so they’re just all over the place and the proceeds. Of the auction on April 4th go to the to back center of the Arts and so is it just a great opportunity to come and support local art and have a great time. 

Shannon Stone: There’s if you want to find out more information because they’re going to be doing walking tours and though that information I don’t I’m not familiar with go to to and they’ll have all the current information about tours. There’s also Maps available so you can Can you know grab a map when you go to TCA into back and they’ll show you where all the javelinas are so we’re encouraging people groups of people individuals families to go get your pictures taken with the javelinas. They’re all painted differently and they’re so beautiful and wonderful and artists did such a great job so much thought and effort was put into this project and it’s just wonderful. It’s a fun. That’s all I can say is this project is absolutely fun and Really encourage everybody to come out check out the javelinas and you know, if you’re really interested come out on April 4th for the auction the live auction. 

Tom Heath: Yeah, I think the the sort of the concept that I was shared was it’s kind of like a treasure hunt. So to speak where you get this map in the and you can travel all around some by walking, but obviously if they’re in Tucson or Green Valley or something like that, you can’t but that you can just sort of take this map and track them all down and and then there’s information. It’s about the artist and everything else and you’re saying the in these these will be collected or some of them will be collected as part of that auction process. 

Shannon Stone: Yeah. So on the TCA map, there’s a place for individuals to write in 10 javelinas. They found in town when they come visit and they get their map Circle the one they like the best they and they need to drop it back off at the center of the Arts and to back and a winner will be announced in April. I’m I’m assuming it’s in conjunction with the actual auction on the fourth. The prize is really awesome. It’s a reconsider. To that Golf Resort, which I don’t know if you’ve been there, but it’s unbelievably beautiful, 10 was filmed there of course and it’s just the ambiance.

Shannon Stone: There is old mixed with new and there be another special programs throughout the season like I mentioned possible walking tours and that sort of thing and those will be mentioned on their website at javelinas day to the Presidio back to that really quickly. 

Tom Heath: What are some of the things that That are probably unknown to the world about about the Presidio wear it when people come down and they start doing the tour’s what what’s what do you what do you get as their sense of what gets surprises them? 

Shannon Stone: Yeah. Well for one, everyone is just blown away by how much we have here not just in volume, but also just in in history, you know, as I mentioned earlier we cover about 2,000 years worth of History. Consistently and Tucson and Southern Arizona in general we can boast that we’re older than the United States. We’ve consistently been inhabited for thousands of years and the museum here is just it’s unbelievable. 

Shannon Stone: We’re working to update some of the exhibitions to bring a more current perspective and more inclusion and a lot of interactive’s to course the ruins people love the ruins and going through the Rojas house, but I have to say say I think we really connect people the most just with the stories the stories of the individuals who made to back what it is today. We make them come alive and they really do Reach Out And Touch people so we get a lot of people from back east or the Midwest and they don’t know anything about Arizona’s history or especially southern Arizona’s history and you know to back we’re only 20 miles north of the Mexican US border and there’s just it’s just so rich Here and it’s almost like another world to these people they step out of what they’ve known their whole lives. They come here and they learn about you know, the different native tribes here the Spanish and then just all the individuals who had inspired to keep home here or Ranch here and until today, you know, the trials that we have today. So it’s it’s a really great Community. 

Tom Heath: This Village is amazing and we work we collaborate so much with other organizations like the to back Historical Society border Community Alliance the to back center of the Arts on the trail Coalition. I could just go on and on and on everyone truly here cares about the community and we all want to see its history for your and the Linda see no being remembered and lived and taught and just reaching out to people who never experienced this Host about a hundred seventy to a hundred events a year and a lot of those are you know historical demos. We do a lot of living history. We do great lectures. Our lecture series is unbelievable. We have a concert series with Ted Ramirez who is tucson-based as well. He does a lot with the Tucson Presidio. We do guided tours of the river. The Santa Cruz river is not far from here and that is a huge. Part of our history is the river and just free events. 

Tom Heath: So if people want to you know, not miss out on any of our events, especially the free ones they can join they can just give us a call and give us their email. We send about one or twice maybe two to a year of just our calendar of events. And so that way everybody knows what next season is going to look like and of course follow us on Facebook and Instagram at the to We love to have you post your selfies at our selfie station and course hashtag Tubac Presidio.

Tom Heath: Hashtag Tubac Presidio when you take your selfie there that is according to Shannon Stone the executive director at the to back Presidio State Historic Park and Museum. I want to appreciate, want to thank her for her time and appreciate how much is going on down there and then she took a few minutes to chat with us. Well, my name is Tom Heath and you are listening. NG to Life along the streetcar downtown radio 98.1 FM and available for streaming on Downtown Radio dot-org that’s a wrap for episode number 121 think we’re going to call this one off the beaten path because we took a little bit of a detour off our normal footprint of a mountain to UArizona.

Tom Heath: And yes, I am trying to adopt that UArizona, so I’m probably going to need some help with that. Hey, we got some cool shows coming up here in February we have Nice stuff happening with the folks over at tap and bottled. They got a cool little event coming up have a chance to sit down with Randy Doorman and the launch of their project forth and University Trinity also have that interview we did with the designers and those at the U of A who put together say just did it those that you Arizona who put together the Student Union Memorial center there. Well today is o 2 o 2 2020 it’s a A palindrome the same date forwards and backwards o2o to 200 200. It’s a little too crazy for me. So we’re going to leave you with music from tropical beach. This is all too crazy for me. Have a great week and tune in next Monday for more Life along the streetcar. 

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