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Teri Colmar

Ticket Sales Begin for “$$Priceless$$

By | Editor's Pick, Entertainment, Events | No Comments

IT’S TIME!!  You can now buy tickets to our special event: “$$Priceless$$ – An Antiques Appraisal Event” to be held on Thursday, March 12 at 5:00 p.m. The event will take place at Oro Valley Country Club and feature Catherine Baron MA, formerly an appraiser on “Antiques Roadshow”.   Tickets are $75 per person and includes dinner (cash bar) and verbal appraisal of one lap-sized item. Catherine will select a few items to discuss in detail with the audience.

But wait there’s more! You can purchase raffle tickets for prizes including; a vacation stay at a time share, original painting by local artist Gail Munden, dinner for 2 at Oro Valley Country Club and one more “surprise “ item.

Tickets are sold on “Search” Oro Valley Historical Society in the Search events box at the top of the page.
Tickets are limited to 150…don’t miss out on a fun event!

All proceeds are to benefit ongoing programs of the Oro Valley Historical Society an independent 501(c)(3) self-sustaining volunteer organization.

For more information contact Peg O’Connell at or use Facebook messenger at the Oro Valley Historical Society Facebook page.

Thank You for Supporting OVHS!

By | Editor's Pick, Events, Members Update, Newsletter | No Comments

We wish to thank all of you volunteered at the Christkindlmarket booth, visited the Pusch House, purchased items from our booth and gave donations!  We had record crowds touring the Pusch House on Saturdays from November 9 through December 21.  Some tourists were “first-time” visitors while others were regulars who enjoyed seeing the new displays.  Most often, folks commented that the Pusch House Museum and Steam Pump Ranch are Oro Valley’s hidden gems and that they would like to see more activity/events at the property as well as continued restoration.

Please let the Historic Preservation Commission, the Town of Oro Valley Parks and Recreation Department and Town Council members know if you would like to see more progress at Steam Pump Ranch.  In the meantime, the Oro Valley Historical Society will continue our liaison with the town and offer new exhibits and tours TWICE a month on the Second and Fourth Saturdays of each month through April.  Check the calendar and our Facebook page for further information.


History Hikes!

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History Hikes for January – March 2020

Oro Valley Historical Society


Wednesday, January 22 – Honey Bee Canyon and Homesteader Ruins. Meet:  8:30 am at Honey Bee Canyon parking lot on Rancho Vistoso Blvd.

Participants:  Limit of 20. Sign up on a first come, first served basis.  All must sign an OVHS waiver at the meeting place.

Contact to sign up:  Jim Williams at by January 20.

Hike:  3-4 miles total with 200’ elevation change.  Walk in sandy Honey Bee Canyon and then along the CDO Wash.  Hear about early settlers in the area. Return the same way.   Time about 3 hours.

Gear: Wear hiking boots and a hat. Bring water and sunscreen.


Wednesday, February 19 – NW corner of Catalina State Park. Meet: 8:30 am – Equestrian Center, Catalina St. Park

Participants:  Limit of 20. Sign up on a first come, first served basis.  All must sign an OVHS waiver at the meeting place.

Contact to sign up:  Jim Williams at by Feb 17.

Entrance fee to Catalina State Park: Participants pay – $7 for a maximum of four persons in a car.

Hike:  Walk 3-4 miles (elevation change 50’) on sandy soil to the historic Elias homestead and back.  View and hear about homesteads and ruins.  Time: about 3 hours.

Gear: Wear hiking boots and a hat.  Bring water and sunscreen.


Thursday, March 26 – Oro Valley Country Club Estates. Meet at 8:00 am at Holiday Inn Express, Oracle Rd.

Participants:  Limit of 20. Sign up on a first come, first served basis.  All must sign an OVHS waiver at the meeting place.

Contact to sign up:  Jim Williams at by March 24.

Hike: Walk 5 miles on paved streets (elevation change 200’) in a beautiful, historic neighborhood and hear its history. Time: 3 hours.

Gear: Wear comfortable walking shoes and a hat.  Bring water and sunscreen.


Cost: a suggested donation of $5.00 per person to the Historical Society, payable at the parking lot.

Cancellation: in case of bad weather, the hike leader will send you an email by 7:00 am.

Leader: Jim Williams, local historian and author of Claiming the Desert








What’s in a Name?

By | Editor's Pick, Education, Events | No Comments

On Wednesday, November 12 the Oro Valley Historical Society featured a talk by Arizona Star columnist, David Leighton.  David discussed the origins of many Tucson street names.  His column “Street Smarts” focuses on that subject and is a favorite of many readers.

Some note worthy names?  Super Chicken Drive, Ina Road (pronounced Eena), and Limberlost.

Check out this site for information on these and other street names:

Thank you to David for his talk and to Jim Williams our Speakers Bureau coordinator!

Christkindlmarket Booth at Steam Pump Ranch

By | Editor's Pick, Entertainment, Events | No Comments


See the Nutcrackers at our Christkindlmarket booth!

Many cities around the world have adopted the festive Christkindlmarket during the holiday season.  The fairy-like Christkind (grounded in German culture) visits children, bestowing gifts to them once they are in bed and fast asleep. Thus, Christkindlmarkets celebrate German culture and feature “Old World” gifts, food and activities.

As many of you know, George Pusch and John Zellweger established Steam Pump Ranch in 1874.  George was an immigrant from Germany and John hailed from Switzerland.  The Oro Valley Historical Society (OVHS) decided to celebrate their Germanic heritage this holiday season. As a result, we are presenting our first Christkindlmarket!

The Pusch House will be decorated in traditional German holiday style.  Tours will be given and exhibits will feature the Pusch family history.  Our Christkindlmarket booth will offer unique ornaments of many holiday traditions including; German, Native American, and Southwest.  Buy a great hostess gift, trimmings for your tree and even something for the pooch! There will be some yummy treats (while they last) and activities for the kids, too!

So, mark your calendars!  The Pusch House and Christkindlmarket booth will be open on Saturdays beginning November 9 through December 21 from 9 a.m. to Noon and on Second Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

 Don’t miss this great opportunity to connect with local history, traditions, and your community.  We hope to see you there!  And it’s free (but donations are always appreciated)!


November Library Display

By | Editor's Pick, Education, Historical Articles | No Comments

If you missed the Romero display at Steam Pump Ranch, there’s still time to catch it at the Oro Valley Public Library.  Francisco Romero and his wife, Victoriana,  were the first non-Native settlers in Oro Valley circa 1869.  Visitors to the exhibit at the Pusch House included ancestors of Romero.  Visit our Facebook page to see the gallery of photos (Oro Valley Historical Society).

The Romeros

Oro Valley Historical Society
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