July events at Saguaro National Park - Tucson News Now

July events at Saguaro National Park

(Source: National Park Service) (Source: National Park Service)
TUCSON, AZ (Tucson News Now) -

Saguaro National Park is offering a variety of walks and talks that explore the park’s wonderful natural and cultural histories. Program listings also are available on the park’s website, www.nps.gov/sagu, or visit us on Facebook. Interpretive programs are free, but park entrance fees apply. Be sure to call in advance to make your reservations, as some events require them. 

Naturalist Programs at Tucson Mountain District (West District):

Programs are offered on most days in the morning at 10:15 and/or 11:15, and in the afternoon at 2:15 and/or 3:15 and last 30 to 45 minutes, unless noted otherwise.  Topics include mountain lions, lizards, coyotes, roadrunners, javelinas, kangaroo rats, insects, flowers, birds, plant and animal survival strategies, and the saguaro cactus.

July 5, 12, 19, 26  10:15 a.m.    Mountain Lions: Beyond the Myth     Talk: 45 minutes
Envision a puma stalking its prey, then uncover the true nature of this elusive but essential predator. Misunderstood, maligned, and nearly eradicated by settlers, the cougar remains threatened by human encroachment. Wheelchair accessible

July 7, 14, 21, 28 3:15 p.m.    Lizards are Hot, Lizards are Cool   Talk: 30 minutes
Lizards are small denizens of the desert that are a critical component of our desert community. Find out what it means when they do pushups or exhibit other odd behaviors. Wheelchair accessible

July 6, 13, 20, 27 3:15 p.m.   Kangaroo Rat: Super Survivor     Talk: 45 minutes
Learn about the remarkable behavioral and physical adaptations these rodents possess that allow them to survive harsh desert environments. Find out how this nocturnal animal escapes predators, evades heat, and endures aridity. Wheelchair accessible

July 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 3:15 p.m.   Cooking With Prickly Pear     Talk: 30 minutes     
Learn how you can incorporate prickly pear into your diet. A live cooking demonstration will show you how to prepare and cook prickly pear. Prepare for a sweet treat! Wheelchair accessible

July 6, 13, 20  27 11:15 a.m. also July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29  3:15 p.m.  Living With Giants Talk: 45 minutes 
The saguaro celebrates events and faces challenges throughout its life. A biologist explains how it provides shelter and substance for wildlife; when it flowers; its growth patterns; and how it fights for survival against drought, lightning, frost, and other dangers. Wheelchair accessible

July 4, 11, 18, 25   3:15 p.m.   Raptors!  Talk: 30 minutes 
Southern Arizona and the Sonoran Desert Region are renowned for the large variety of animal and plant species, especially birds, that can be found in the area. Among the most fascinating of those are the raptors, top predators of the avian world, who either live here year-round, or migrate through the area. Wheelchair accessible

July 11  10:15 a.m. also July 4, 11  2:15 p.m. What is the Reason for the Saguaro Fruit Harvest?  Talk: 30 min
For over a hundred years the Tohono O’odham have harvested the saguaro fruit every summer. Come participate in a cultural experience and learn about this enriching tradition. Wheelchair accessible

July 26, 28, 29    2:15 p.m.   Creepy Crawlers: The Silent Majority   Talk: 30 minutes
Learn about some of our most feared and misunderstood arthropods who call this park home. Come discover how essential they are for our desert community and why we shouldn’t fear these mostly harmless creatures. Wheelchair accessible

Naturalist Programs at the Rincon Mountain District (East, 3693 S. Old Spanish Trail):

July 1 & 22         1:00 p.m., July 12    11 a.m.  & July 12 11 a.m.        A Sticky Situation at Saguaro        Presentation
Here at Saguaro National Park East we have over thirty species of cacti and each is beautiful in its own way. Finding them all is hard, but we will look at them in a stunning photo gallery and learn a few uses these plants have for those living here and beyond. Wheelchair accessible

July 1, 8, 15, 22, 29    2:00 p.m.    The Second Hundred Years            Presentation
Join us for a look at more than a hundred years of park history as we contemplate a new century of protection by your National Park Service.

July  2, 9, 16, 23, 30    2:00 p.m.    The Changing Cactus Forest         Presentation
Our Cactus Forest has changed greatly over the years – and change is coming even faster now.  See what our grandparents saw, and think about what our grandchildren might see.

July 5, 11, 12, 25, 26    10:00 a.m.    Monsoon Rains in the Desert        Easy Walk
Join a park naturalist to learn the vital role monsoon rains play in the lives of Sonoran Desert plants, animals and humans. Wheelchair accessible

July  5 & 26   11:00 a.m. & July 15   1 p.m.       Flash, Whoosh, Gush &Growth: Monsoons     Presentation
The summer heat and humidity bring the mighty and sometimes destructive monsoon rain. Saguaros, toads, and others depend on these drenching afternoons to begin a new season of life in the dry desert. A fabulous video opens this theater presentation.  Wheelchair accessible

July 5, 11, 12, 25, 26    2:00 p.m.    Exploring the Saguaro Wilderness        Presentation
Saguaro National Park includes over 70,000 acres of wilderness within its boundaries. Explore what’s “up there” with a park naturalist.     Wheelchair accessible    

July 6, 13, 20        2:00 p.m.    Yesterday, Today and Saguaro       Presentation
Climate change has come to the National Parks.  Let’s discuss what’s happening today, and learn about a specific threat to our Sonoran desert and the Saguaro cactus.   

July 7, 14, 21, 28    2:00 p.m.    Fifty States, Fifty Parks       Presentation
 From Yellowstone to Lady Liberty … and 48 places in-between!  We’ll celebrate your National Park System and help you find a nearby park.

July  8 & 29    1:00 p.m.  & July 19 11 a.m.  The Point of the Matter is Cactus    Presentation 
Cacti are much more than strange plants with spines. They are uniquely equipped to thrive in the desert environment, and every year bloom with spectacular flowers. This theater presentation will highlight these survival marvels with a beautiful photo gallery. Wheelchair accessible

July 8               7:00 p.m.              Full Moon Hike        2-mile, 2-hour Guided Hike
Explore the Sights and Sounds of the Sonoran Desert as it comes to life under the full moon. Wear sturdy walking shoes and bring water and a flashlight. Reservations are required and can be made by calling (520) 733-5153.

For a complete listing - please visit the website - https://www.nps.gov/sagu/planyourvisit/guided-programs.htm, or contact the visitor centers for daily updates.

Both visitor centers are open daily from 9 am to 5 pm, except Christmas Day.

  • Red Hills Visitor Center  (Saguaro WEST) - 2700 North Kinney Road Tucson, AZ 85743  (520) 733-5158                            
  • Rincon Mountain Visitor Center  (Saguaro EAST) - 3693 South Old Spanish Trail Tucson, AZ  85730 (520) 733-5153

For more information about Saguaro National Park and some of its partners, Friends of Saguaro National Park, Western National Parks Association, and the Rincon Institute, visit these websites:

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