Local traditions and culture in Arizona

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Most Viewed Local Customs in Arizona

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    You might see cowboy with GUNS in holsters!

    by jumpingnorman Written Nov 22, 2008

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    You might see a cowboy with a gun in his holster in Arizona and this is perfectly legal in this state, as long as he is not a “Prohibited Possessor”.

    Arizona has had a long history of guns and cowboys, and so there is No state permit required to possess a shotgun, rifle or handgun. But it is unlawful for a "prohibited possessor" to possess a firearm - a prohibited possessor includes a person found to constitute a danger to himself or others pursuant to a court order and whose court ordered treatment has not been terminated, and there are other things that may make you “prohibited” (like if you’ve killed someone fore with a gun!)

    Another law on guns says: No person shall carry a firearm "concealed on his person." This does not apply to a person in his dwelling, business premises or on real property owned or leased by that person. A handgun carried in a belt holster which is wholly or partially visible or carried in luggage is not considered carrying concealed.

    So, in this land of the cowboys, don’t be shocked if you see guns in holsters!

    My lovely daughter goofing around in Arizona
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    Bikers do not wear helmets in Arizona! Yikes!

    by jumpingnorman Updated Nov 22, 2008

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    I think it’s dangerous that there is NO bicycle helmet law in Arizona for minors or for adults. You'd be shocked to see these motorcyclists on the freeway, and even kids in parks riding their bicycles without helmets! But apparently, eye protection is required though!

    However, there may be local statutes (county or city) on helmets and you may still need to call your county sheriff or city police department to find out what statutes apply where you are.

    But, no matter what, it is really very dumb not to be wearing helmets specially now when we know how fatal accidents can be when people do not have protective gear!

    So, when you’re driving along I-17, don’t be shocked when you see a speeding biker without a helmet! And when you rent your Harley bike (yes, there are places where you can rent a Harley in Arizona! Vroom, vroom...), be sure to still wear your helmet!

    My nephew visiting us in Arizona wears helmets
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    What time is it?

    by toonsarah Written Mar 17, 2010

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    Arizona does not observe Daylight Saving Time and instead stays on Mountain Standard Time year-round. The exception to this is the Navajo Reservation, in the northeast corner of the state. The Reservation observes Daylight Saving Time and changes its time for six months of the year.

    Because of this we spent the holiday continually double-checking the time! During the 14 day trip we changed our watches nine times, as we drove from Nevada (Pacific Time with Daylight Saving) to Utah (Mountain Time with Daylight Saving) to Arizona (Mountain Time without Daylight Saving); back again briefly into Utah (Mountain Time with Daylight Saving) and returning to Arizona (Mountain Time without Daylight Saving), then onto the Reservation (Mountain Time with Daylight Saving) and off again (Mountain Time without Daylight Saving); into Utah again (Mountain Time with Daylight Saving) and finally back to Nevada (Pacific Time with Daylight Saving). Phew!

    On the road in Arizona

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    Indian Influences

    by KimberlyAnn Updated Aug 24, 2004

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    Native American Indians still have a major influence on the state of Arizona. Reminders of their history can be seen in national monuments, tribal parks, and historic sites that preserve their ancient dwellings, crafts, and customs. Through out the state you will find Native Americans items still being made and sold; along road ways as well as in galleries and gift shops. You will see the S.W. Indian influence in the flat topped, earth tone, adobe style homes and businesses you see within the state. In Sedona you will see that this theme is carried out to the point that even the McDonalds is of this S.W. Indian architectural style.
    The photo shows some Indian items I have purchased. The pottery is a seed pot with a lizard design. Below the pot is a small Navajo sand artwork. The beaded hairpiece has a design honoring the sun and the traditional manor in which many tribes face the doors of their homes east to greet the morning sun as it rises. Local American Indians designed the earrings and necklace.

    Local Indian Items
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    All about the Cactus: Saguaro...

    by jumpingnorman Written Jul 5, 2009

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    Saguaro is pronounced “suh-war-o”, although I say “SAHG-WA-RO” which is wrong…but then who cares... this Cacti could probably be the official state cactus of Arizona – I am not sure if it has this title already. It is a great plant and really adds to the image of our state.

    But definitely, it is a criminal offense to harm these plants. And if you have to build your property on land with a saguaros, you have to pay for uprooting and relocating them!

    They do grow out slowly, growing just an inch or two annually during the first eight years, and then they leap upward ---- but it is only between 50-70 years before they start sprouting arms. And you see a lot of these arms in both Phoenix and Tucson (where they have a saguaro park)--- meaning that we really have very very old saguaros!

    Saguaro cactus at Carefree, Arizona
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    Missing Sign

    by Basaic Written Jul 12, 2007

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    There was no sign coming from the east towards Fort Apache, so we got lost, and had to stop at the Chevron Station (about the only thing in the town of Day Canyon). Got good directions and met this cute White Mountain Apache girl.

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    • Museum Visits

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    Whether a voyeur or...

    by 34N118W Written Sep 7, 2002

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    Whether a voyeur or exhibitionist, Lake Havasu is a Hedonist paradise. You can choose to be an active participant, or a quiet observer. Whatever your level of participation, be prepared to see things that might shock the faint of heart. Sex, drugs, and rock n' roll all in one place!

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    When driving, many of the...

    by nuker Written Sep 7, 2002

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    When driving, many of the stops will have Navajo Indians selling some of their jewelry and clothing they just made. Some beautiful things to look at. Be careful in touristy outlooks not to pay too much.

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    When crossing from California...

    by miner Written Sep 2, 2002

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    When crossing from California into Arizona we were stopped at the border and checked for certain plants that we may be transporting into Arizona.I think they were checking for diseased plants and pests.
    People with respiratory problems would go to Arizona for the clean air and dry climate.Now industry has moved in and the air is becoming polluted around the Phoenix area,and the humidity is said to be rising slightly.

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    Saguaro Cacti

    by Bwana_Brown Written Aug 26, 2002

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    It was just very 'western' as one would expect. The area is in the middle of a severe drought so things were quite dry. Nevertheless, it was interesting to drive around and enjoy the different views that a desert has to offer. Had to get this shot of one of the Saguaro cacti in the Tonto National Forest!

    Saguaro Cacti

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  • If you visit Tucson during...

    by wantstocanoe Updated Aug 26, 2002

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    If you visit Tucson during easter there is a tribe here called the Yaqui Indians that allow the public to come and watch their dances at their reservation right in town. Some of these dances go for days. They ask that you don't take any pictures though please. They do not charge. They dress in traditional outfits and there is a Deer Dance.

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  • There are inspection stations...

    by wantstocanoe Written Aug 26, 2002

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    There are inspection stations as you enter Arizona from the highways. They are looking for fruits and vegetables and plants. They will confiscate these. They are trying to keep some bugs and stuff out of the crops here. They make everyone pull over. Now they also stop you on the way north out of Nogales Mexico to ask your country of origin.They have dogs at these stops too.

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    I was surprised to discover...

    by ozeliz Written Sep 8, 2002

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    I was surprised to discover that I was culture shocked, in the real sense of the term, something I really didn't expect coming from Australia. I think perhaps it may be the almost parrallel planes, not quite matching up, like being out of focus perhaps! Small things that are so 'same but so very different'? Having nightmarish experiences in supermarkets, purchasing food was an amazing ordeal, after 1 week I felt I was losing it, why can't I locate the... stopping other shoppers to ask 'is there such a thing as 'x' in America?' Hard to describe... it's not just food, but seemingly every aspect of life is just different enough to make you wonder if you left your sanity on the baggage carousel!

    I think my friend felt I was making judgements about things, my intent was to attempt to describe the differences, not imply preferences, it took me a while to figure out I was better not to! Now I have had time to assimilate everything I experienced, I can't wait to get back & experience the American social & cultural environment again!

    So please forgive the idiot who next asks you an apparently dumb question, especially if it's with an accent!

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    Native American Customs

    by Monkey32 Updated Jun 23, 2005

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    If you plan to travel to any Native American ceremonies and events, please ask a Native person what are some customs.

    For Example: If you're going to go to a Kachina dance on Hopi lands, remember, NO PHOTOGRAPHY! Also during certain feast outsiders are welcomed into various homes to eat.

    Another Example: Sunrise Dance on Apache lands, don't walk in front of the Crown Dancers, because they will not hesitate to run after you and whip you no matter who you are.

    Many native peoples are very friendly, but some are hesitant to talk with outsiders with caucasian tendencies. So you are for warned.

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    The cactus wren

    by jedd43 Written Aug 24, 2002

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    The cactus wren is the official state bird. It grows seven to eight inches long and likes to build nests in the protection of thorny desert plants like the arms of the giant saguaro cactus. These birds were in the top of this unusually shaped saguaro cactus.

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