Road Scholar : Home
A Grand Christmas: Sedona’s Red Rocks and the Majesty of the Grand Canyon

Program Number: 10414RJ
Start and End Dates:
12/21/2014 - 12/26/2014;
Duration: 5 nights
Location: Sedona, Arizona
Price starting at: $1,130.00 - Price may vary based on date, departure city
Program Type: Holidays; National Parks Activity Level: t (see description)
Meals: 13; 5 Breakfasts, 3 Lunches, 5 Dinners    
Meal Options: Vegetarian    

Wake up on Christmas morning and experience the sunrise over one of the world’s natural wonders – the Grand Canyon! The snow dusted monuments of the Canyon, contrasted with its multi-hued layers and sheer enormity, are a sight to behold. While in Sedona enjoy live western music with a holiday twist. Finally, enjoy a field trip to historic Jerome, once Arizona’s largest copper mining town and now a thriving artist colony.




Highlights

• En route to the Grand Canyon, travel through scenic Oak Creek Canyon and up its famed switchbacks to Arizona’s high country.
• On Christmas Eve, experience sunset over the Grand Canyon, then revel in a special holiday dinner before attending a candlelight service at the Canyon’s “Shrine of the Ages.”
• In Sedona, walk through the Mexican-inspired art village of Tlaquepaque; at Jerome State Historic Park, see its impressive mountain-side setting and displays of its unique mining history.



Activity Particulars

Walking up to one-half mile, longer hikes optional. Elevations up to 7,000 feet.



This program has been limited to 80 participants, but the group will be divided into two smaller groups for most activities, coming together for festive holiday events



Coordinated by Northern Arizona University.




Sedona

Sedona was historically a rural ranching community in Oak Creek Canyon. Today, the sunny city attracts visitors to its red-rock cliffs and lush evergreens, international film festival, and lively art scene.



Accommodations
Sedona: Resort setting on the banks of Oak Creek; Grand Canyon: all lodging on the rim of the Grand Canyon in historic Grand Canyon Village on the rim side (some rooms have partial Canyon views).

Road Scholar Instructors
These instructors are participating on at least one date of this program. Please note that changes may occur.
Richard Stephens

Rich has been director of Northern Arizona University’s highly popular Road Scholar programs since 2001. He previously spent many years in the field as a program coordinator and group leader, where he honed his skills and learned the importance of detailed, pre-trip planning. Before making his home in Arizona’s spectacular red-rock country, Rich spent 10 years in Yosemite National Park and the Santa Cruz mountains as an environmental educator.
 
Marcia Burns

Naturalist and artist Marcia Burns has spent over 25 years hiking, exploring, and rendering out of clay the canyons and landscapes of Arizona and the Southwest. She has a passion for the flora and fauna of the region, as well as its interesting and quirky historic figures and their fascinating stories. Marcia has journeyed to many corners of the world and visited the Galapagos in 2011 — an adventure that provided her with even more inspiration for her clay creations.
 
Garrett Roberts

From the historical to the cinematic to the dust-on-your-brow trail, Garrett Roberts knows the American West. His lectures invoke intrigue and humor to dispel the myths created by Hollywood’s western genre. Garrett replicates museum-quality 19th century leather equipment for theater, is an avid hiker, and enjoys singing jazz. He has also worked for Emmy award-winning wardrobe designer Michael Boyd and was the key costume designer for Stephen Spielberg’s “Into the West.”
 
Ray Coin

A member of the Hopi tribe, Ray Coin is from the Third Mesa village of Bacavi on the Hopi Reservation in northeast Arizona. His father worked at the Museum of Northern Arizona, and while growing up, Ray and his siblings rubbed elbows with the geologists, archaeologists, ecologists and palaeontologists doing field work at the museum during the summer months. Ray has been sharing his Hopi culture with Road Scholar participants since 1993.
 
Ken Mikell

Ken and Lynne Mikell play a wide range of traditional music, with particular attention to the Celtic roots of cowboy music. Using harp, guitar, recorder, fiddle, and harmonica, they animate and illuminate the music that followed the trail west. From old time trail songs to the golden era of the radio and silver screen cowboy, they have an extensive knowledge of the history of Western music and enjoy sharing it with audiences.
 
Meals and Lodgings
   Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
  Sedona, AZ 3 nights
   Grand Canyon Rim Lodges - Kachina or Thunderbird Lodge.
  Sedona, AZ 1 night
   Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
  Sedona, AZ 1 night
 Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
Type: Resort
  Description: On the banks of beautiful Oak Creek in Sedona's red rocks.
  Contact info: 1752 SR 179
Sedona, AZ 86336 USA
phone: 928-282-7333
web: www.pocodiablo.com
  Room amenities: All rooms have AC, cable TV, dataport phones, voicemail, coffee/tea maker, refrigerator, free WiFi access, irons and ironing boards.
  Facility amenities: Poco has a fitness center, basketball and racquetball courts, on property golf course, heated outdoor pool and a whirlpool. On site restaurant and cocktail lounge. Close to galleries and Sedona's Tlaquepaque marketplace. Massage therapists on site.
  Smoking allowed: No
  Additional nights prior: Seasonal. Call the Poco Diablo for the rates in effect during your pre/post program stay.
  Check in time: 4:00 PM
  Additional nights after: Seasonal. Call the Poco Diablo for the rates in effect during your pre/post program stay.
  Check out time: 11:00 AM

 Grand Canyon Rim Lodges - Kachina or Thunderbird Lodge.
Type: Lodge
  Description: Located in the heart of Grand Canyon Village on the rim of the Canyon, the lodge offers easy walking access to the many historic buildings in the village. Kolb Studio, The Hopi House, and El Tovar Hotel are all just a short stroll away. For those that wish to do some hiking, the famed Bright Angel Trail is very close and rim trails take off both directions. Ideal for sunset and sunrise viewers. All rooms booked are on canyon view side of lodge.
  Contact info: Grand Canyon Historic Village
Grand Canyon, AZ 86023 USA
phone: 928-638-2631
web: www.grandcanyonlodges.com/kachina-lodge-410.html
  Room amenities: Beds are triple sheeted, in-room coffee, refrigerator, safe, television, telephone, and full bath.
  Smoking allowed: No


Travel Details
  Start of Program:
Program registration at resort/hotel meeting room starting at 4:30 PM. You will be staying at Sedona Poco Diablo Resort that night.
  End of Program:
Program ends after breakfast, 8:00 AM You will be staying at Sedona Poco Diablo Resort the night before.
  Required documents:
The Road Scholar Health & Safety Form is required.
  Parking availability:
On hotel premises, no charge.
Transportation
To Start of Program
  Location:  Sedona, AZ
  Nearest city or town:  Phoenix, AZ 120 mi S; Flagstaff, AZ 30 mi N
  Nearest highway: AZ Hwy 179
  Nearest airport:  Phoenix Sky Harbor Intl
  From End of Program
  Location: Sedona, AZ
    (Additional transportation information same as above)
Travel Details
 

Sedona, AZ to/from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Van Go Shuttle
phone: 866-448-2646
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Estimated $45, price does not include customary gratuity.
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

2 hours (from Phoenix). 

 

Distance:

 

120

   

Van Go times shuttles to arrive in conjunction with program start/end times. Best to arrive into Phoenix Sky Harbor airport by 12:30 PM and book departures from PHX after 3:00 PM. Call shuttle company PRIOR to booking flights to aid in ease of travel transfers as Van Go offers just one shuttle departure time. Van Go picks up from all terminals at Phoenix airport and nearby airport hotels, and drops off at program hotel. Return shuttle departs immediately upon conclusion of program.

 

Sedona, AZ to/from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Arizona Shuttle
phone: 800-448-7988
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Approximately $49; $47 (if internet reservation), price does not include driver gratuity.
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

2.5 

 

Distance:

 

120 miles

   

Many shuttles daily from Phoenix International Airport to Sedona. Pick up shuttle just outside the terminal's baggage claim. RETURN: pick up at your hotel, drop off at your terminal at Phoenix airport. www.sedona-phoenix-shuttle.com. For ease of travel transfers, it is recommended that participants check shuttle schedules PRIOR to booking airfare.

 

Sedona, AZ to/from Phoenix Sky Harbor Airport

 

From Airport

 
 

Service:

 

Commercial Van/Shuttle
Ace XPress Shuttle Co
phone: 928-639-3357
Advanced Reservations Required

 

Per Person/One Way:

 

Approximately $68 one way to Sedona; price does not include gratuity.
Prices are subject to change.

 

Travel Time:

 

2.5 hours 

 

Distance:

 

120 miles

   

Scheduled as much as possible to your arrival in Phoenix. Pick up all terminals and nearby airport hotels, drop off at program hotel. RETURN: Scheduled as much as possible to your departure time from your hotel. Drop off at your terminal at Phoenix airport. Reservations required. Note: This shuttle company also provides service from Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport.

 
Driving Directions
  Sedona Poco Diablo Resort from I-40 Take the I-40 to Flagstaff, AZ. In Flagstaff, connect with the I-17 south at exit 195. In 3 miles, take exit 337, Sedona. Turn right at the end of the off ramp and then immediately left onto 89A. Stay on 89A for 27 miles through Oak Creek Canyon to Sedona. Drive through uptown Sedona until the traffic circle intersection with Highway 179. Three fourths around the circle turn onto Highway 179 for 1.9 miles. Poco Diablo is on the right.
  Sedona Poco Diablo Resort from Phoenix I-10 Take the I-10 to Phoenix. In Phoenix, take the I-17 north to exit 298, AZ Highway 179, Sedona. Stay on Highway 179 for 12.5 miles. Poco Diablo Resort is on your left.
Elevation Note: 7000 ft. elev. while at Grand Canyon. Those with medical concerns should consult their physician.

Equipment Requirements: Water bottle, sturdy walking shoes, sunglasses, day pack for personal gear.
The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.


Daily Schedule

Day 1: Welcome to Sedona!/Program Registration/Participant Introductions
(Sunday, December 21)
   
 Afternoon: On-site registration in your chosen accommodation anytime between 4:30 and 5:15 PM.
 Dinner: Dine at T-Carl's, the resorts on site restaurant. T - Carl's specializes in health conscious fine dining with entrée selections rotating nightly to include: Chicken or Eggplant Parmesan; Turkey Breast Steak Served with Mashed Potatoes; Southwest Veggie Baked Acorn Squash on Brown Rice; Lasagna and season vegetables; etc. Vegetarian selections always available.
 Evening: Your program coordinator will discuss the program's planned activities. Then get acquainted with your fellow holiday travelers.
   
Accommodations: Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
Meals Included: Dinner

Day 2: Sedona Overview and Hopi Culture Presentation/Tlaquepaque Village/Western Tales and Ballads
(Monday, December 22)

Note: Short walks at scenic overlooks. Tlaquepaque walking surface can be uneven at times.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at the resorts restaurant, T-Carl's. Multiple hot entrees to choose from including scrambled eggs, bacon or sausage, fruit bowl and yogurt, oatmeal, etc.
 Morning: This morning you will either visit some of Sedona’s best-loved sites on a coach excursion OR hear about the Hopi People of northeast Arizona.

Take an excursion to enjoy breathtaking overviews of Sedona and the Secret Mountain Wilderness, Airport Mesa's spectacular vistas and a stop in bustling uptown Sedona. Spend some time at Tlaquepaque, Sedona Arizona's Arts & Crafts Village, authentically fashioned after a traditional Mexican village. OR listen to a presentation by Ray Coin, a member of the Hopi Nation. The Hopi, descendants of the Grand Canyon's and Four Corners Ancestral Puebloans, live on three windswept mesas in villages northeast of Sedona. Hear about cultural beginnings, the clan system and some of the contemporary issues Hopi deal with as they live in both worlds.
 Lunch: Lunch at the hotel's restaurant. Multiple entrees to choose from including hot and cold sandwiches (vegetarian option daily), 1/2 sandwich and soup, chef or spinach salad, etc.
 Afternoon: This afternoon you will either visit some of Sedona’s best-loved sites on a coach excursion OR hear about the Hopi People of northeast Arizona.

Take an excursion to enjoy breathtaking overviews of Sedona and the Secret Mountain Wilderness, Airport Mesa's spectacular vistas and a stop in bustling uptown Sedona. Spend some time at Tlaquepaque, Sedona Arizona's Arts & Crafts Village, authentically fashioned after a traditional Mexican village. OR listen to a presentation by Ray Coin, a member of the Hopi Nation. The Hopi, descendants of the Grand Canyon's and Four Corners Ancestral Puebloans, live on three windswept mesas in villages northeast of Sedona. Hear about cultural beginnings, the clan system and some of the contemporary issues Hopi deal with as they live in both worlds.
 Dinner: Enjoy dinner at a local Sedona restaurant.
 Evening: An evening of musical entertainment featuring Western ballads and folk tales -- with a holiday twist -- performed by Ken and Lynne Mikell. From the sentimental to the hilarious, they will keep you wanting more. Depending on the performance location, you may be transported to the program site.
   
Accommodations: Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 3: Tuzigoot National Monument/Historic Jerome/Uptown Sedona
(Tuesday, December 23)

Note: Tuzigoot is 1/2 mile total and up a paved hill to see the ruin site. Walking up to 1/2 mile in Jerome on steep, paved sidewalks. Watch for curbs.



   
 Breakfast: A hearty breakfast at T-Carl's. See day two itinerary for example of entree selections.
 Morning: Spend the first part of the morning at Tuzigoot National Monument. Tuzigoot is an ancient village or pueblo built by a culture known as the Sinagua. The pueblo consisted of 110 rooms including second and third story structures. The first buildings were built around A.D. 1000. The Sinagua were agriculturalists with trade connections that spanned hundreds of miles. The people left the area around 1400. Then travel to the historic mining town of Jerome. Located on Cleopatra Hill, Jerome was once the largest copper mine in the United States. Today, it is a magnet for artists with many interesting tourist attactions to offer. Enjoy a historic walking tour with a local guide and hear about the old mine, the "Sliding Jail" and other area attractions.
 Lunch: Lunch on your own in one of Jerome's many restaurants. A list of options will be provided for you to explore while you walk the streets of this quirky historic town.
 Afternoon: After lunch, visit Jerome State Historic Park. The Douglas Mansion was built in 1916 on a dramatic promontory and inside are maps, ore samples, historic photos and the story of the town's rise and fall and rebirth. On the second floor, the 3D model of the town with the tunnels beneath it merits the trip. The park shows a video of the history of Jerome continuously all day. Return to Sedona in late afternoon.
 Dinner: Enjoy a group dinner in one of Sedona's restaurants.
 Evening: Tonight you will have time, either before or after dinner, to see the sights and stroll the shops in Sedona's Uptown, decked out in unique southwestern holiday style.
   
Accommodations: Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Dinner

Day 4: Oak Creek Canyon/Colorado Plateau to Grand Canyon South Rim/Christmas Eve Dinner
(Wednesday, December 24)

Note: Today there will some required walking at the Grand Canyon of up to 1 mile total, mostly on flat, paved sidewalk/trails. Longer walking/hiking opportunities may be available in the afternoon where participants have a little free time to explore the rim trail.



   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at T-Carl's. See day two itinerary for example of entree selections.
 Morning: Travel through scenic Oak Creek Canyon en route to the Grand Canyon. Some of the douglas fir and ponderosa pines may be frosted with snow as you make your way onto the Colorado Plateau and past the snow-capped San Francisco Peaks.
 Lunch: Enjoy a sack lunch along the Canyon rim.
 Afternoon: Visit Desert View's famed Watchtower designed by Mary Jane Colter, a renowned architect and designer for the Fred Harvey Company and Santa Fe Railroad. Take in the sweeping views of the mighty Colorado River visible a mile below. NOTE: the trip to Desert View is weather dependent. Then continue to the Visitor Center at Mather Point. Aside from the view, the Visitor Center has maps, exhibits and multi-media presentations which tell the story of this world wonder. If time permits, view the Peter Coyote-narrated film "Grand Canyon: A Journey of Wonder". Then check in to your Grand Canyon National Park lodging. Your lodging is on the rim of the Canyon with opportunity to enjoy sunset from your rooms or just a short walk to the rim to take in the Canyon's stunning panorama and color display as evening descends.
 Dinner: Board the coach to travel to a special Christmas Eve dinner at the Squire Inn in Tusayan, just outside the national park. Both groups will partake of this feast together. This sumptuous Christmas buffet will include a salad bar as well as a number of entrees including a prime rib carving station and ham along with the traditional turkey, stuffing, mashed potatoes and gravy, and a selection of vegetables. Dessert? Of course!
 Evening: Following dinner, attend the annual Christmas Eve candlelight service at Grand Canyon National Park (optional).
   
Accommodations: Grand Canyon Rim Lodges - Kachina or Thunderbird Lodge.
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 5: Christmas Day at Grand Canyon/El Tovar Breakfast/Grand Canyon Village
(Thursday, December 25)

Note: Walk a short distance to the El Tovar for breakfast. Other walking on your own along the rim or down the Bright Angel Trail which could be icy.



   
 Breakfast: Enjoy breakfast at the most famous of all Grand Canyon eateries, the El Tovar hotel. Take in the historic ambiance, large picture window views of the canyon, and a full selection of breakfast entrees.
 Morning: Wake up this morning to a Grand Canyon sunrise (optional for those who want to sleep in!). Then spend a leisurely morning enjoying breakfast at the historic El Tovar Hotel on the Canyon's rim. Following breakfast, on your own or with a guide, you can choose to take a brisk or leisurely walk along one of the Canyon's rim trails, or stroll the historic village and enjoy the holiday decorations in the many historic structures, some designed by Mary Jane Colter -- Hopi House, Bright Angel Lodge and Lookout Studio. Visit the Kolb Studio where the Kolb brothers began taking photos of mule riders over 100 years ago. Take in a few more views from from the rim across the canyon to the North Rim -- 10 miles as the raven flies -- then depart for Sedona.
 Lunch: Enjoy a box lunch en route to Sedona.
 Afternoon: Return to Sedona this afternoon. Be on the lookout again for the snowcapped San Francisco Peaks, with Arizona's highest peak -- Mt. Humphreys -- at 12,633'! Arrive in Sedona in time for an optional social hour before dinner.
 Dinner: Christmas dinner this evening will be served at T-Carl's, the hotel dining room. See night one itinerary for example of entree selections.
 Evening: Enjoy a final evening with new friends, recapping your experiences during this holiday to remember.
   
Accommodations: Sedona Poco Diablo Resort
Meals Included: Breakfast, Lunch, Dinner

Day 6: Program Farewells/Happy Holidays!
(Friday, December 26)
   
 Breakfast: Breakfast at T-Carl's. See day two itinerary for example of entree selections.
 Morning: Farewell to all this holiday season! Departures following breakfast.
   
Meals Included: Breakfast

Free Time Opportunities
 
  Sedona, AZ General Overview
Points of interest w/in 2 Hours of Sedona: In the Flagstaff area, 30 miles north: Sinagua period ruins at Walnut Canyon and Wupatki National Monuments; Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument; the Native American artifacts and collections housed at the Museum of Northern Arizona, which also presents Native American performances and demonstrations; the Kachina Wilderness on the 12,600 ft high San Francisco Peaks; old downtown Flagstaff & old Route 66; Lowell Observatory, which discovered the planet Pluto. In the Oak Creek / Sedona area: Massive sandstone cliffs and riparian beauty of Oak Creek Canyon; Sedona red rock monoliths and the surrounding Secret Mountain Wilderness; Sedona’s fine art and jewelry galleries and its international cuisines; the New Age Sedona vortex offerings; the Sinagua ruins at Montezuma’s Castle and Tuzigoot National Monuments; Jerome, AZ a mining ghost town. In other outlying areas: Hopi & Navajo Reservations; the Mary Colter designed La Posada Hotel / Restaurant at Winslow, AZ; Grand Canyon Railroad at Williams, AZ and the Grand Canyon National Park (2.5 hours north.)
Important information about your itinerary: Every effort has been made to ensure the accuracy and completeness of the information featured on this website. Itineraries are based on our best information at this time. Circumstances beyond our control may require us to adjust itineraries or other details. We regret any inconvenience this may cause and appreciate your understanding. Information will be sent to you from your Program Provider approximately three weeks prior to the program start date. The prices listed for commercial services and facilities that are not included in the program cost, such as airport shuttles or extra nights lodging, are subject to change without notice. Since Road Scholar cannot guarantee the accuracy of these prices, we strongly suggest contacting the companies directly for the most up-to-date information.

Suggested Reading List


An Introduction to Grand Canyon Ecology


Author: Houk, Rose


Description: Using illustrations, photographs and illuminating text, this little guide will help you understand the dynamic nature of the Grand Canyon's ecosystems. 56pp



Cadillac Desert: The American West and Its Disappearing Water


Author: Reisner, Marc


Description: The story of the American West is the story of a relentless quest for a precious resource: water. It is a tale of rivers diverted and dammed, of political corruption and intrigue, of billion-dollar battles over water rights, of ecologic and economic disaster. In Cadillac Desert Marc Reisner writes of the earliest settlers, lured by the promise of paradise, and of the ruthless tactics employed by Los Angeles politicians and business interests to ensure the city's growth. Cadillac Desert is a stunning expose and a dramatic, intriguing history of the creation of an Eden--and Eden that may be only a mirage. 608pp



Grand Canyon Geology


Author: Beus, Stanley


Description: This second edition of the leading book on Grand Canyon geology contains the most recent discoveries and interpretations of the origin and history of the canyon. It includes two entirely new chapters: one on debris flow in the Canyon and one on the impact of water flow releases from the Glen Canyon Dam. All chapters have been updated where necessary and all photographs have been replaced or re-screened for better resolution. Written by acknowledged experts in stratigraphy, paleontology, structural geology, geomorphology, volcanism and seismology, this book offers a wealth of information for geologists and general readers interested in acquiring an understanding of the geological history of this great natural wonder. 423pp



Living at the Edge: Explorers, Exploiters, and Settlers of the Grand Canyon Region


Author: Anderson, Michael F


Description: A comprehensive look at the pioneer history of the Grand Canyon Region, from its earliest residents to the creation of the national park at the end of the pioneer era (circa 1920). Included are close to two hundred historic photographs, many never published before, and 12 custom maps of the region. 184pp



Secret Sedona: Sacred Moments in the Landscape


Author: Larry Lindahl


Description: This book provides an overview of the terrain, ancestral Indian ruins and petroglyphs found in Sedona's wilderness areas. Extraordinary photography from one of the nations most photogenic areas. 80 pages.



Sedona (Images of America Series)


Author: Heidinger, Lisa Schnebly


Description: Little more than a century ago, when only a handful of families lived in what is now Sedona, in Oak Creek Canyon, none would have dreamed it would become such a popular destination. The matchless combination of bright blue skies and red rocks has inspired artists of every medium to attempt to capture the mystic formations. Fortunately some began almost before the town was named after the wife of early settler T. C. Schnebly, who organized the first post office, at the beginning of the 20th century. From early apple growers to artists, what has united the diverse residents of Sedona over time is the conviction that they have found one of the earth's great treasures. 128pp.





You can't find a better value than Road Scholar.


As a not-for-profit organization, we are dedicated to providing all-inclusive educational programs at great value. From lectures to gratuities to field trips to accommodations - the tuition you pay up front is all that you pay.



Specifically, this program includes:

Plus these special experiences...

View the Daily Schedule to see more

And included with all Road Scholar programs:


© Road Scholar 2014 | Call toll-free: 1-800-454-5768