Old Tucson a few miles from New Tucson, but 100 years back in time!
Near Tucson, Az
When wind-swept flames roared through the night and through the Old Tucson Movie Studio in April of 1995, 40% of the sets and tourist attractions were lost. It was a devastating loss of a place that was originally built as a movie set in 1939 to resemble Tucson in the 1860's. There has arisen from the ashes...the NEW Old Tucson Studios and Wild West Theme Park...
And...it looks good.
Chris Ousley works for Old Tucson Studios. "Since the fire, Old Tucson Studios has changed quite a bit. We've put in 13 million dollars in renovations here. New buildings out here. And the focus has been on entertainment lately."
While some things never change...desperate-looking desperados still walk the boardwalks and the afternoon stage still gets in mostly on time and the guy with the bag of gold gets out just in time to engage in a gunfight and miscellaneous explosions and violence...The LOOK of Old Tucson has changed. The main street is more open and the Grand Palace Saloon and Hotel dominates the square.
"A typical day at Old Tucson Studios," says Chris, "if you come out you expect to spend about 5 to 6 hours because we have so many shows. And by shows we have our traditional gunfights, which I'm sure people remember the gunfights. So, the shows are different. If you've seen them before, we change them every year. So, new shows."
The grand, old Mexican mission has been re-built and just about everywhere you walk there is an atmosphere of another time and another place.
"I think the Old West has a certain mystique because everyone wants to be a cowboy. Everyone wants to come out to the wild west and play dress-up and everyone remembers from being a kid going to the movies and seeing Roy Rogers and Gene Autry and John Wayne. And that's what we offer here, we offer a bit of fantasy mixed in with fun." In the REAL Old West, fires burned down a lot of towns. They re-built and started over. So, here, has Old Tucson. This is the NEW, Old Tucson.
Old Tucson is located in Tucson Mountain Park, 201 S Kinney Rd. From Interstate 10 in Tucson exit Speedway Blvd west and follow the signs. OR, exit Ajo Way from I-19, west to Kinney Rd & follow the signs. RV's should use the Ajo Way route, Speedway crosses a mountain pass and the road is very steep, sharp curves and VERY narrow.
Hours and Prices - Friday through Sunday: 10am - 6pm daily
Park operations include live Wild West entertainment featuring gunfights, action-packed stunts, and toe-tappin' musicals. Plus food and beverages, merchandise, rides and attractions for the entire family.
Monday through Thursday - 10am - 3pm daily
Park operations are limited to guided tours. Every hour, on the hour, from 10am to 2pm, Old Tucson Studios features 45-minute guided tours highlighting the park scenery and movie history. Restaurants and restrooms.
Phone for info: 520-883-0100. Or go their website for up-to-date info.
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