Best Date Spots in Mesa, AZ

Dating these days doesn’t seem to require any amount of thought or effort, sadly being reduced to swiping left. However, for those of you that are looking to take your date somewhere special, these locations can’t be beaten. Whether on a first date or celebrating your wedding anniversary, let the team here are a few places that we think you may enjoy in Mesa, AZ. 

Desert Belle Cruises

The Desert Belle Cruise will offer you and your date a great new experience taking you around Mesa’s Saguaro Lake.  There are three options, including a 90-minute narrated tour, a live music experience, and a wine cruise. You will not only be able to see the beauty that Arizona has to offer, but also the amazing canyon walls and wildlife.  All three offer beverages, including beer and wine, available for purchase during the excursion.

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3 Unique Dining Experiences in Mesa, AZ

If you’re looking for something different in your dining experiences, we’ve come up with a shortlist of restaurants in Mesa that are both unique and highly rated. We hope you’ll like what we’ve picked out.

The Grid: Games & Growlers

If you love to play games, you’ll have a good time at The Grid: Games & Growlers. You can play air hockey, Dance Dance Revolution, Skee-Ball, foosball, pinball, and VR games. Selections sometimes rotate in and out. Most arcade and console games are free to play, from the old-school Atari 2600 up to current-generation consoles. Board games are also available.

The food is reasonably priced bar fare, starting with appetizers such as pretzel bites with cheese, chicken parmesan bites, and mac and cheese bites cleverly shaped like game controllers. Entrees include a grilled pizza sandwich, tacos, a hummus plate, wings, and more. Vegan options are available upon request, or you can order vegan “wings” made of deep-fried cauliflower. For drinks, try an upscale beer on tap or a cocktail.

The Grid is at 525 S. Gilbert Road and is open daily. The restaurant plays rock music and hosts a number of events, such as gaming tournaments and karaoke.  

Meeples

If you’re mainly into board games with family and friends, head to Gilbert to Meeples, where you can choose from more than 100 games. The impressive library runs the gamut from classic to modern games. You can play every expansion of Dominion, The Settlers of Catan, Ticket to Ride, and more. It’s a great way to take your family out to try out a game before buying.

Gameplay at a table is free if you make a minimum purchase of $25. If you don’t plan to eat, you’ll pay $10 for your table. The rate goes down to $5 with purchase of an entree and $2 with a tab of $15. Tables seat a maximum of five people. Games can also be rented, and customers can buy memberships that have discounts and perks.

The food is casual comfort fare: a variety of loaded hot dogs, nachos, salads, regular and loaded fries, chili, macaroni and cheese, and other sides.

Meeples is at 3821 E Baseline Road, Suite J-140. It’s open Monday to Saturday.

Organ Stop Pizza

Enough about games. How about organ music? Organ Stop Pizza says its Wurlitzer theater organ is the largest in the world. It has more than 5,500 pipes and is powered by three turbine blowers, with a fourth on standby. The original organ was installed in the Denver Theater in 1927. It was rebuilt in 1975 and includes pieces from other Wurlitzer organs. The music begins 30 minutes after opening. Performances are 30-45 minutes long, with breaks of 10-15 minutes between sets.

We don’t often see a pizza like Organ Stop Pizza’s combination pizza, which is piled with cheese, sausage, pepperoni, ham, beef, bacon, mushrooms, black olives, green pepper, and onion. Several other specialty pizzas and build-your-own and gluten-free options are on the menu, along with pasta, sandwiches, appetizers, salad bar, and ice cream.

Organ Stop Pizza is at 1149 E. Southern Ave. and is open every day.

We hope you’ll like these three unique dining experiences in Mesa. Maybe you’ll come up with some of your own novel spots.


Where to Find a Hot Summer Read Near Mesa, AZ

Great Bookstores near Mesa, AZ

Summer is the ideal time to pick up a good book. With high temperatures and unrelenting sun, what could be better than spending the afternoon curled up indoors with your favorite novel? Mesa boasts plenty of terrific used bookshops where you can stock up on titles that grace your summer reading list. Here are a few places you’ll find a hot summer read.

Bookmans

Bookmans on 1056 S. Country Club Dr. is more of an adventure than a trip to the bookstore. From thousands of titles to games, music, and even artisan jewelry, this buy-and-sell shop has it all.

Plan an entire afternoon to soak up everything this gem has to offer. Don’t worry, there’s a cafe on-site that’s stocked with coffee, smoothies, and pastries when hunger sets in. Bookmans has served the valley since 1976 with six locations from Tucson to Phoenix. It’s a genuinely cool place to hang out in the summer.

Half Price Books

If you’ve ever turned on the radio in Phoenix and tuned in to KTAR, you’ve heard of Half Price Books, located on 6339 E. Southern Ave. Here, bookworms are invited to browse aisle after aisle of classics to contemporary novels and everything in between. Come in on Tuesdays for new releases hot off the presses or on the first Saturday of the month, when you can meet a featured local author. Drop off your old books, and the Half Price staff will donate them to nonprofits. They’ve contributed more than a million books to organizations so far.

Book Gallery

If you’re on the hunt for a discount bookstore, head to Book Gallery in downtown Mesa at 50 W. Main St. Get lost in this cerebral maze with your summer reading list in hand. It could take days to fully appreciate all the titles awaiting at this charming wood-shelf and wood-floor adorned shop.

Come in on a whim to find some real treasures, or ask the friendly staff to help you find specific titles. You’ll even find an assortment of vintage series, such as the 1930s Nancy Drew mysteries for young adults, comics, and more — and all at reasonable prices.

Old Town Books

Old Town Books at 518 S. Mill Ave. is not your typical Barnes & Noble-type bookshop. Plan to be captivated by the knowledgeable owners who offer personalized service that won’t interfere with your browsing enjoyment. Their excitement about books is contagious, and they know every inch of their shop.

Find hidden gems on every floor, including out-of-print books, first editions, and signed copies, all at reasonable prices. There’s even a bargain rack where you can get books for only a dollar. Old Town Books does keep odd hours, however. Call ahead so you won’t miss them.

Spend your relaxing summer days by the pool with a book. Now that you know where to find a hot summer read near Mesa, get your list together and head out on a treasure hunt.


5 Can’t-Miss Summer Festivals in Phoenix, AZ

Summer Festivals in Phoenix, AZ

Arizona is a prime destination for fun, particularly during the summer. Why not get out there and discover the variety of events hosted each year, right here in the valley? Here are five of the best summer festivals in the Phoenix area.

1. Suds and Slides

Head out to Mesa’s Riverview Park on June 22 for Suds and Slides. It’s like summer camp, but for grown-ups. This festival is the perfect time for adults over 21 to grab a cold beer, indulge in delicious bites, and play summer-camp-themed games. There will be waterslides, a dunk tank, mini-golf, and beer pong. The fun starts at 2:00 p.m. Advance tickets are just $15 per person, or get a four-pack for $50.

2. Elevate Music Festival

Elevate your mood and enjoy a variety of live performances at this 7th annual Christian music festival. Catch three nights of live performances, June 21 through 23. Held indoors at the Grand Canyon University Arena on 3300 W. Camelback Rd., the lineup includes Carrollton, Lincoln Brewster, Danny Gokey, and many more. Single day tickets start at $24.50, and free parking is available.

3. Hell City Tattoo Festival

Celebrate the incredibly creative art of tattooing at this unique festival Aug. 23 through 25. Hell City Tattoo Festival Phoenix is a world-class convention packed with hundreds of brilliant artists from all over the world. This is the perfect venue at which to engage with skilled industry professionals under one roof and learn more about other forms of body modification. Enjoy a wide range of entertainment all weekend while you experience the fine art of tattooing on a new level at the Arizona Biltmore. Doors open each day at 9:00 a.m.

4. Glow Nation

The country’s latest blacklight water and dance festival takes over Phoenix this summer on July 6, starting at 3:00 p.m. This glow-in-the-dark traveling festival promotes a fun and active lifestyle featuring top DJs that spin the latest hits. Join the Glow Nation fun at Margaret T. Hance Park on 67 W. Culver St. Tickets start at $20 and include glow accessories and a full-on light show.

5. Real Wild and Woody Beer Festival

Join your fellow beer lovers at the Phoenix Convention Center at 100 N. Third St. on July 27 for the Real Wild and Woody Beer Festival. Celebrate 30 years of local craft brewing with 75 or more of the Southwest’s best brewers as they introduce their fresh, new flavors and seasonal specialties.

With more than 350 craft beers from barrel-aged brews to specialty casks, there’s something for everyone to pour at this festival. The indoor summer event is the perfect chance to sample a new distillation, enjoy live music, and devour complimentary snacks provided by top local restaurants. Tickets are $60 for general admission and are available from the Arizona Craft Brewers Guild.

Phoenix always has an event in the works, and this summer is no different. With so many great festivals, the hardest part is deciding which one to attend.

Some rights reserved by QuinnDombrowski


2019’s Top Water Parks near Phoenix

Top Water Parks in Phoenix, AZ | Rocky's Auto CreditWhen the summer rolls around, head to one of these top water parks in and around Mesa, Arizona, to spend the day cooling off and feeling the rush of adrenaline.

Golfland SunSplash

Head to Golfland SunSplash for fun in the sun and water. Combining thrilling rides, waterslides, and miniature golf, the destination is a hot spot for families. Continue reading


4 Inexpensive Things to Do in Phoenix

Things to do in Phoenix | Rocky's Auto CreditYou don’t have to break the bank to have a good time in Phoenix. Check out a few of the best, and most affordable activities to enjoy in the Phoenix, Arizona, area.

Visit the Arizona State Library

The Arizona State Library is made up of a large collection of digital and print books that contain Arizona state information. If you are looking to learn more about the beautiful state of Arizona or you just want to browse the archives, you are sure to enjoy the free admission to the state library. Continue reading


Explore Phoenix’s Desert Botanical Gardens

Phoenix Botanical Gardens | Rocky's Auto CreditThe Desert Botanical Gardens highlight the beauty and nature of the desert landscape of Phoenix. You can easily get lost simply wandering among the beauty of the unique plants, trees, flowers, and cacti located throughout the gardens. There are a lot of activities, events, and learning opportunities to check out, as well.

What is the Desert Botanical Garden?

The Desert Botanical Gardens consists of 140-acres of desert land with a large variety of plant species to enjoy. The plants can be observed in outdoor exhibits and there are 4,379 species of plants in the Living Collection and 379 rare and endangered plants that are being maintained in the gardens. The gardens are a great place to visit for the day, volunteer, attend an event, research, or experience a guided tour with the family or out on a field trip.

Exciting Activities and Events

There is a lot to see and do at the Desert Botanical Garden. The selection of nature trails makes it a popular walking destination. Some of the trails include the Sonoran Desert Nature Loop Trail, the Center for Desert Living Trail, the Desert Discovery Loop Trail, the Harriet K. Maxwell Desert Wildflower Loop Trail, and the Plants and People of the Sonoran Desert Loop Trail.

Attending an event at the Desert Botanical Garden can be an exciting activity. Dueling Pianos, Dinner on the Desert, and Sunday Concerts in the Garden are just a few examples of events they hold. You can visit the Desert Botanical Gardens website or call them directly for additional information about upcoming events.

Ever-changing Exhibits

If you have visited the gardens before, you may learn and experience something entirely new as the exhibits are ever-changing. You can also sign up for a guided tour. Daily tours are available and include garden tours, behind-the-scenes tour, and birds in the garden tour. You can also register for a private group tour.

Award-winning Meals

You can also grab a bite to eat among the gardens. Grab a delicious meal at Gertrude’s for brunch, lunch, or dinner. The restaurant is a Diner’s Choice Award winner. For a faster meal, you can stop by the Patio Cafe for drinks, salads, sandwiches, and a full kid’s menu. Make sure you also check out the gift shop for a souvenir to commemorate your visit to the Desert Botanical Gardens.

Important Research of the Botanical Gardens

Part of the mission of the Desert Botanical Gardens is to learn more about the plants and how to preserve them, especially those species that are endangered. There are 23 scientists and conservationists that are committed to gaining knowledge about these organisms working in the Hazel Hare Center for Plant Science.

If you are interested in learning more about the desert plants, you will want to check out the library, where the librarian can assist you with finding resources if you have a certain topic in mind to research.

There are lots of different ways to experience the gardens. Whether you are just visiting for the day, want to help by volunteering, or you are a member returning to see a new exhibit, the Desert Botanical Garden has something for you.

Attribution Some rights reserved by Ariane Middel


3 Awesome Things to do in Phoenix

Top Thigns to do in Phoenix - Rocky's Auto CreditThere’s no shortage of awesome things to do in Phoenix, Arizona. With so many educational and exciting activities across the city, there’s something fun for every member of your family.

Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights

Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights is a 5,000 square-foot landmark that has stood tall against the desert landscape since 1930. The four-story castle can be seen from the freeway and sits on 44 acres of untouched desert. The castle is maintained by the Tovrea Carraro Society in an effort to preserve and protect the space it is on. Continue reading


Chevy Silverado: The Best Model Years to Buy Used

Chevy Silverado at Rocky's Auto Credit

If you’ve ever owned a Chevy truck, you probably still own a Chevy truck. This brand inspires loyalty and there’s a reason for it: durability. These trucks are workhorses that just don’t quit. If you’re in the market for a used Chevy Silverado, make sure you’re looking at the best years. Here are some details about the best Silverado models available.

2015 Chevy Silverado 1500 Extended Cab

While the Silverado 1500 is offered in four trim levels, the LT is well equipped and works well for all intended purposes. The 143.5-inch wheelbase complements the 230 inches of length. With over 19 feet of truck and 61 cubic feet of bed volume, the 2015 Chevy Silverado can handle a 1,850-pound payload and has a towing capacity of 9,200 pounds. The strength of this model can accommodate any of your pet projects.

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3 Top Attractions Near Phoenix

Top Attractions near PhoenixPhoenix, the capital of Arizona, is a huge city that houses many exciting attractions that include beautiful landscapes, interesting museums, art galleries, and excellent restaurants. Here are a few attractions that you simply cannot miss.

  1. The Musical Instrument Museum

The Musical Instrument Museum, which is rated as one of the top 15 museums in the U.S., houses a collection of over 6,000 instruments from all over the world. Regions such as Asia, Africa, the Middle East, Latin America, and the U.S. are represented in the Geographic Gallery. In the Artist Gallery the greats of the music world are celebrated in ever-changing exhibits. You can see and hear instruments that were played by legendary musicians such as Elvis Presley, Johnny Cash, and Dolly Parton. Continue reading