After a one-year closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Southern Arizona Heritage and Visitor Center has reopened with a limited schedule – Wednesday through Friday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. – while the center hires more staff and trains new volunteers to open seven days a week.
“It’s been a tough year for so many. We’re just excited to welcome back our residents and visitors,” said Diane Frisch, director of attractions & tourism. “Come see us and let us help you plan your next Southern Arizona vacation or staycation.”
The 7,500-square-foot Visitor Center is located inside the renovated Historic Pima County Courthouse, 115 N. Church Ave, and is open from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. every Wednesday through Friday. Hours of operation will expand once the center is fully staffed and has enough volunteers to open seven days a week.
Despite its name, the visitor center isn’t just for visitors – the attraction is the starting point for anyone looking to learn more about Southern Arizona’s culture, heritage and local attractions. It includes a gift shop, mini-theater and several interactive displays designed to inform, educate and direct folks to museums, shopping, festivals, dining, mountains, rivers, lakes, ruins, trails and more.
It’s also home to the official shop for The Chuck Huckelberry Loop, which was recently named the Best Recreational Trail in the U.S. by USA Today. The Loop Store carries cycling jerseys, running shirts, t-shirts, hats and more. In-person hours for The Loop Store are the same as the Visitor Center, but the online shop is always open.
Thanks to the partnership between Pima County’s Attractions & Tourism, Visit Tucson, the University of Arizona, and the January 8th Memorial Foundation, there’s more to see and do at the Historic Courthouse alongside the Visitor Center exhibits.
Five-To-Oh! Coffee, located on the ground floor of the Historic Courthouse, serves hot coffee, lattes, pastries and more every Monday through Friday, 7 a.m. to 2 p.m.
The January 8th Memorial honoring the victims and survivors of the tragic Jan. 8, 2011 shooting is located on the west side of the courthouse and open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
Still to come is rental space inside the Historic Courthouse for private celebrations, meetings and other events; a John Dillinger exhibit inside the courtroom where the notorious gangster was arraigned more than 85 years ago; and the University of Arizona’s Alfie Norville Gem and Mineral Museum, which is expected to open later this year.