To Bisbee, boys! So say the Gay Travelers

Bisbee-Overlook-101
June 27, 2014

Bisbee, AZ – The town’s motto is “Everyone’s welcome in Bisbee” and indeed they are! The last time we were there, we had a very interesting time.

"Orient Saloon at Bisbee, Arizona… Faro game in full blast. Recognized: Left to right-Tony Downs (standing with derby) part owner; Doyle, a concert hall singer at corner of table, sitting, with derby; back of him standing is Dutch Kid; Sleepy Dick, the porter, to right with light felt; Charlie Bassett, with soft felt hat in rear next to wall; dealer is Johnny Murphy, and Smiley Lewis in silk hat." By C. 5. Fly, ca. 1900

People have enjoyed themselves for over a century in Bisbee. Here is the “Orient Saloon at Bisbee, Arizona… Faro game in full blast. Recognized: Left to right-Tony Downs (standing with derby) part owner; Doyle, a concert hall singer at corner of table, sitting, with derby; back of him standing is Dutch Kid; Sleepy Dick, the porter, to right with light felt; Charlie Bassett, with soft felt hat in rear next to wall; dealer is Johnny Murphy, and Smiley Lewis in silk hat.” By C. 5. Fly, ca. 1900

There is so much to see and do and the weather is nearly always perfect since it is located in the Mule Mountains with an elevation of over a mile high.

The highest peak, Mount Ballard rises to 7,500 feet. Bisbee, about 90 miles southeast of Tucson has a population of just a little over 6,000.

Bisbee was founded as a copper, gold and silver mining town in 1880. Bisbee is noted for its gay population and its Gay Pride Days is considered one of the top 5 rural Gay Pride Days in the country.

The 2008 Bisbee Gay Pride celebrations included a Leather and Lace Street Party, poolside BBQ, a lingerie pub crawl, the Bert Lundy Dance Party and a turn of the century ball.

Ten U. S. AIDS Memorial Quilt panels were on display at Bisbee’s famed Copper Queen Hotel.

There are several great places to stay in Bisbee including the Doublejack Guest House. Built before 1900, this fully restored and charming one-bedroom miner’s cottage is located along an old mule path turned staircase above street-level parking.

The art walk greets window shoppers the same way they greet buying customers.

The art walk greets window shoppers the same way they greet buying customers.

Audrey’s Inn offers a nice selection of rooms and suites and located at 20 Brewery Ave.

David’s Oasis Camping Resort is a “member’s only” gay resort for gays and lesbians and has a gay bar.

The Eldorado Suites is located right downtown in historic Bisbee and they do have beautiful suites.

Bisbee does have something for everyone so Google all of their websites to get a better idea on where you want to stay.

For dining, we recommend Bisbee Breakfast Club, 75 Erie St. A2, Café Roka, 35 Main Street and the Mexico Lindo Express, 20 Brewery Ave. They have the best Mexican food in Southeast Arizona.

For shopping and services, be sure and check out The Copper Shop, 23 Main Street where artisan, Robyn Downey offers quality, handcrafted copper art pieces and has been in business since 1975.

Kathy Sowden, left, and her partner of 20 years, Deborah Grier, are reflected April 2 in a mirror in their Bisbee, Ariz. shop, Finders Keepers Antiques and Collectibles. The couple supports a city ordinance legalizing civil unions.(Photo: Tom Tingle, The Arizona Republic)

Kathy Sowden, left, and her partner of 20 years, Deborah Grier, are reflected April 2 in a mirror in their Bisbee, Ariz. shop, Finders Keepers Antiques and Collectibles. The couple supports a city ordinance legalizing civil unions.(Photo: Tom Tingle, The Arizona Republic)

Finders Keepers Antiques and Collectibles, 81 Main Street specializes in vintage jewelry, quality antiques and collectibles.

Belleza Fine Art Gallery, 27 Main Street is owned and operated by the Renaissance House, a non-profit treatment center for homeless women. They have a wide diversity of paintings, watercolors, sculptors and Adirondack furniture.

Warm Hands Therapeutics, 27 Subway St., owned by Nicholas Night, offers a wide range of massage therapy including Craniosacral and Lymphatic Drainage Technique.

Sites of interest include: Cochise County Courthouse, which was built in the art deco style and the Copper Queen Mine, which was once a major copper producer and can be toured daily.

Of note is the Phelps Dodge General Office Building, a National Historic Landmark home of the Bisbee Mining & Historical Museum, the Lavender Pit, an inactive open pit mine in the center of the city and Warren Ballpark, built in 1909 and is baseball’s oldest park still in use.

One of Bisbees' famous crystals.

One of Bisbees’ famous crystals.

Also visit the Thomas Ranch, the family-owned and operated beef cattle ranch since 1902.

Since Bisbee has such an array of landscapes, several Hollywood movies have been there.

Before traveling to Bisbee be sure and check out www.discoverbisbee.com and. www.gayarizona.com

The Bisbee June Pride Festivities will be June 19, 20 and 21. Check out that website at www.bisbeepride.com.

For our readers in the West part of the country, this would be a perfect place to visit.

If you plan on visiting anywhere in Arizona, email: info@gayarizona.com and request a free Arizona Pride Guide.

Always remember to have fun when traveling, meet new people and talk to everyone!

You can contact Donald Pile and Ray Williams, Award-winning Celebrity travel columnists at: gaytravelers@aol.com or visit their webpage at: gaytravelersataol.blogspot.com.

Here is an overlook of Bisbee today. The next image gives a panoramic view of Bisbee circa 1916. Courtesy Wikipedia.

Here is an overlook of Bisbee today. The next image gives a panoramic view of Bisbee circa 1916. Courtesy Wikipedia.

Click this image for a larger version of Bisbee entire.

Bisbee_1916

This panorama gives you the same view as the photo above.