Take a road trip to southwestern Arizona to discover cowboys, wineries, birding and unique sky island in Willcox, Arizona.
The town of Willcox, in the Cochise County, was founded in 1880. It mainly serves as an agricultural and ranching community. The Willcox area has 18 per cent of Arizona’s range cattle with 300 commercial ranches. In the 1930s, Wilcox was the largest cattle rail shipping point in the US.
Things to do in Willcox, Arizona
- Visit the Rex Allen Museum, devoted to Western movie actor Rex Allen. The famous singing cowboy was known as “Mister Cowboy” and “Arizona Cowboy”. He was born near Willcox in 1920. Rex Allen was inducted into the Western Performers Hall of Fame in Oklahoma City. He received the very fist Golden Boot Award and has a star on Hollywood Boulevard. Rex Allen died in Tucson in 1999.
- Explore the Cowboy Hall of Fame in the Rex Allen Museum. What does it take to be a cowboy? Check out the list of minimum requirements to become a cowboy. The first item on the list: “a wide-brimmed hat and a pair of tight pants, and twenty dollar boots from a discount store”.
- Have your picture taken with the Rex Allen bronze statue across the street from the Rex Allen Museum in the Historic Rail Avenue Park. At the foot of the statue is the burial location of Rex’s horse, KoKo. After Rex’s death in 1999, his ashes were also scattered around the statue.
- Pioneer Cemetery: Visit the grave of famous gunfighter Warren Earp, brother to Wyatt.
- The 1881 era Southern Pacific Depot has been restored.
- A 1915 Mascot and Western passenger railroad car is on display and can be viewed inside during operating hours.
- Willcox Historic Theatre: The Art Deco style theatre was built in the 1930s to fulfill the town’s entertainment needs. The movie house also provided a stage for vaudeville performers, complete with back stage dressing rooms. The theatre was completely renovated in 2012 and is maintained by Willcox Historic Theatre Preservation Inc.
- Bird Watching: If you are a bird watcher, you will be happy to find the Willcox area has documented more than 200 bird species. A variety of Mexican bird species rarely seen in the US can only be found here. The Willcox Birding Festival,held every January, usually sells out. Here is a list of the most recent bird sightings. This area is known for spotting Sandhill Cranes.
- Wine tasting: This area is known as Willcox Wine Country. It grows 74 per cent of all wine grapes used in Arizona. There are 10 wine tasting rooms to check out in the area.
Discover Sky Island
- Chiricahua National Park Monument. This park is 36 miles from Willcox and features rhyolite rock pinnacles formed after a massive volcanic eruption. Take the 8-mile scenic drive or go on a day hike. There are 17-miles of trails and if you plan to hike, watch where you put your hands and your feet. The venomous black-tailed rattlesnake is common here. If you encounter one, slowly back away. The Faraway Ranch Historic District in the park is open on weekends. The unique sky island found here is one of several found in southwestern Arizona.
Find out more about the town of Willcox.
- Wilcox was originally named Maley.
- 75 per cent of Arizona’s wine grapes are grown in the Willcox area.
- In the 1930s, Wilcox was the largest cattle rail shipping point in the US.
- The Willcox area has documented more than 200 bird species.
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