A few short years ago the Old Town area of Cottonwood was a run down, dumpy area people rushed through on their way to Clarkdale and Jerome. But it has been transformed into an interesting place to visit. The ugly, old gas stations have been converted to shops for local artists, an antique emporium or in the case of Rendezvous In Old Town (RIOT); a comfortable beer and wine lounge.
Old Town Cottonwood hosts a variety of activities throughout the year. For example, last weekend was the Thunder Valley Bike Rally - the annual Verde Valley motorcycle rally. This weekend was the Verde Valley Pride Festival. Talk about diversity!
The Verde Valley Pride Festival was a big success with people coming from Flagstaff to the north and Tucson to the south. The visitors enjoyed a perfect day with clear blue sky and comfortable temperatures in the low 90's. The festival was set up in a large grassy area behind city hall. Two large tents facing the stage provided plenty of shady seating to enjoy the entertainment. Vendor booths were lined up around the fence behind the tents. The vendor with the biggest line was the cowboys from the Homo Rodeo Calendar who were autographing their calendars.
There also was an area for children to burn off excess energy which included a bounce house and other games.
Entertainment was provided by Mountain Stranded Time, The Pubes, Llory McDonald plus a drag show by past Miss Gay Arizona contestants. The closing act was Sara Robinson and the Midnight Special.
And if the festival wasn't enough, there was an after festival party at Rendezvous In Old Town (RIOT) and an after-after festival party at 15 Quince.