An old-fashioned marquee illuminates the entrance to the Palace Theater, its scarlet and gold light beaming just as brightly as when the venue first opened in 1922. Back then, it was a 1,300-seat neighborhood movie theater with a second-floor dine and dance ballroom. That was owner Alfred Dibella's vision, and when he passed away in 1959, he made sure the theater landed safely in the hands of his daughter, Frances.
Today, the Palace remains a family heirloom. Much like a dubstep remix of the Gettysburg Address, the current space is a mixture of modern technology and vintage appeal, retaining its architectural integrity despite updates over the years. Perhaps the biggest change has been Palace's transformation from a single-screen movie house into a multi-use event space, capable of hosting everything from rehearsal dinners to graduation ceremonies.
Clasped between Saguaro National Park and the Ironwood Preserve, Double R Ranch appears as though it were plucked straight from the frames of an old Western movie. The windswept grounds stand as a gateway to the thousands of untouched acres that quietly stitch together the Northwest side of Tucson. The ranch gives visitors a chance to explore that land with horseback rides and birthday parties. It also offers weekend getaways and RV hookups to city-dwellers in need of an escape from the crowds and door-to-door minivan salesmen that come with urban living. Double R also accommodates guests who have their own horses with overnight stabling services.
At CNY EQ, head trainer Nicolle Madonna guides students through a specialized training program while paying attention to individual needs. Using her 21 years of experience as a competitive rider, Nicolle identifies the strengths of each pupil, helping them cement the basics of classic equitation before focusing on the style best suited to them. As part of her focus on showmanship, many of Nicolle's protégés go on to compete for top ribbons around New York, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey as part of the CNY EQ Team. She also leads private and group lessons for equestrians of all ages, allowing trainees to translate horses' Morse-code clops at their own pace.
Amid Bowl Mor Lanes' smoke-free environment, friends and families alike toss miniature globes down slick lanes during three games of pin-pummeling excitement. Parties of two or four step into stylish bowling shoes and devise strategies to conquer small armies of 300 pins apiece. Like buying laundry detergent, bowlers selecting a lane have 24 choices that are all pretty much the same. Parties of four take respite at the Lucky Lane Cafe, where a 16-inch cheese pizza awaits division by its conquerors.
Sardo’s dishes up an opulent array of eatables, featuring a wealth of specialty pizzas built from hand-tossed dough and fresh toppings that are prepared daily. The extensive menu sates grumbling stomachs and forgotten geometric taste buds with triangular slices ($1.75 each) or colossal circles, such as a 16-inch Sardo’s Paradise, a twice-baked disk smothered in garlic and tomato sauce and sprinkled with sausage, pepperoni, and a variety of vegetables under a bubbling canopy of mozzarella and ricotta cheese ($18.99). Friday and Saturday nights battered-haddock sandwiches ($5.99) and dinners ($7.99) materialize on menu pages like an edible Brigadoon, delighting palates before vanishing into the misty depths of patrons' stomachs. Pasta dishes lift up orders of chicken or eggplant parmigiana on litters of penne pasta ($7.49) and chicken wings ($6.99 for 10) coat fingers and content grins with your choice from seven sauces.