TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) - At a recent meeting the Tucson Mayor and Council unanimously designated Valley of the Moon a Tucson Historic Landmark, making it the first new landmark in TWENTY YEARS!
Valley of the Moon has been making an impact in Tucson for 92 years. During the depression era construction years (1923-1932) George Phar Legler hired unemployed men to help build the park. He couldn't afford to pay the men but he could give them room, board, and a productive outlet for their energy. I doubt any of them knew their work would have such a rich legacy.
When Valley of the Moon was opened to the public in 1932 it became a part of the fabric of Tucson. We have children visiting today who are the great-great-great-grandchildren of the first visitors from way back when. Magic is real at Valley of the Moon; just ask any kid! Never was this magic more evident than when teenagers from Catalina High School who had visited as small children took it upon themselves to rebuild, restore, and re-invigorate Valley of the Moon under George's guidance in the '70s.
Those teens saved Valley of the Moon and started the culture of volunteerism that still permeates Valley of the Moon today. Valley of the Moon has been volunteer operated, managed, and maintained for 40 years! Valley Volunteers learn life lessons, make dear friends, gain job skills, and have the satisfaction of enriching Tucson's cultural environment. Some people volunteer for a day and others for decades but they all make an impact.
Valley of the Moon is a place where childhood is forever and the most important magic is kindness. Visitors of all ages are enchanted by Valley of the Moon and healing is found there for those that seek it.
This Historic Landmark represents a significant milestone for Valley of the Moon and for the City of Tucson. Historic preservation is an investment in our shared cultural history. Historic places are a finite resource and cannot be replaced. The Historic Landmark program is good for the City of Tucson and Valley of the Moon is proud to be the first landmark established under the revised Land Use Code. The regulatory protections established by the Historic Landmark program will serve to protect Valley of the Moon from ever being developed as anything but a storybook land.
Valley of the Moon could not have accomplished this without the guidance, persistence, and dedication of Demion Clinco and the Tucson Historic Preservation Foundation. Council Member Karin Uhlich and the Ward III staff were critically important navigators when the process seemed murky. We are grateful to them all.