Crafting wines culled from the fertile fields of southern Arizona, Charron Vineyards has a penchant for producing quality whites and reds thanks to its high altitude, cool night temperatures, and lush fields of wine-bottle plants. Guests visit the welcoming, pet-friendly estate to walk along the 4 acres of mature grapevines and learn the intricate details of making fine wines such as their signature white merlot and smooth French-style ros?. The staff also hosts tastings on the scenic open deck and in the glass-enclosed tasting room, during which guests sip fruity whites and complex reds as they gaze at the breathtaking Santa Rita and Empire mountain ranges. Located about a half hour south of Tucson, guests are always welcome to pack a picnic lunch and enjoy the extensive tasting menu of wines offered by the bottle or glass.
Winemaking and viticulture shaped much of the young lives of Flying Leap Vineyards' founding partners: Mark Beres grew up and worked his first vineyard jobs in the wine-growing region of southeastern Washington, and Marc Moeller is the product of generations of Swiss winemakers. Their experiences make for a potent combination of artistry and science when it comes to crafting their own wine. They use only grapes that are lab certified, well adjusted for planting in the Arizona loam, and able to sit patiently for still lifes. This sophisticated fusion is evident at the winery's two tasting rooms, where guests can purchase their favorite vintages and excite their palates with sampler flights.
As the sun rises and illuminates the jagged Sonoran Desert with rose-colored light, colorful hot-air balloons rise into the sky right along with it. This scene occurs seven days a week from September to May during Tucson Balloon Rides' one-hour sunrise floats. Soaring with the morning's easy wind currents, FAA-certified pilot Kevin Wilbur ferries passengers for 10 to 15 miles at altitudes between 500 and 4,000 feet over the cacti forests of Saguaro National Park West and the shrub-covered flatlands of Avra Valley. While gliding over the Tucson Mountains, he also points out important sites as well as deer, foxes, and coyotes. After a gentle touchdown, Captain Kevin and guests enjoy a champagne toast and brunch. If the voyage inspires anyone to become a hot-air-balloon pilot or a cloud, he can also help them earn their private or commercial pilot license with his training program.
Inspired by The Amazing Race, CityScape Adventures—held across the United States—entangle race participants in webs of 12 puzzles and challenges in citywide races to the finish line. Participants compete in teams of two, using their wits, teamwork, and underground network of mutant-turtle spies to complete the tasks given at the start of the race. The 12 challenges take the form of puzzles, riddles, and clues that guide treasure hunters to a specific location within the city, where each team must complete a special task using only their cleverness and muscles. Players can also use the Internet, and the winning team is usually the one that best leverages its resources. The first team to successfully complete all tasks and vault over the finish line will receive a prize and assembly line of high-fives.
By hosting haunted houses and spooky events, The Slaughterhouse has raised more than $40,000 for organizations such as the American Diabetes Association. Visitors interested in befriending the venue?s mischievous specters can embark on ghost tours, which explore the premise?s haunted depths. Alternatively, on-the-go partiers can select from a rental fleet of trailers packed with haunted-house-style frights or sound-system-equipped hearses, ideal for proving coolness to judgmental teenage vampires.
Armed with only their courage, adventurers work their way through darkened alleys of corn, the path lit by nothing more than a curtain of stars above. But they're not alone. Through this maze lurk crazed doctors, hungry zombies, and grisly artifacts of murder and mayhem––an army of bloodthirsty terrors standing between groups of unwilling victims and the exit.
Not all the stalks at Buckelew Farms are haunted, however. Those who escape the Terror in the Corn unscathed can relax their nerves and test their navigational skills in the flashlight maze, where groups survey the darkness to find 12 different checkpoints that offer up clues to the maze. The casual-paced attraction offers up a challenge similar to a classic scavenger hunt, but without the creepy neighbors. Both mazes make a great ending to a day at the farm's 24th Annual Pumpkin Festival, where guests enjoy a lively collection of fall pastimes. Tractors tow carts of hay and families to pumpkin fields to pick out an ideal jack-o'-lantern candidate, and a smattering of colorful tents house arts and crafts activities, children’s games, and a petting zoo full of friendly beasts waiting to be pet, fed, and stealthily adopted. The farm will also be hosting a Great Pumpkin 5K race on October 14, during which participants chart a course through the farm and parts of the corn maze in order to win prizes and raise funds for the University of Arizona Medical Center Departments of Surgery and Neurology.