A Presentation on Jack and Helen Frye and the House of Apache Fires and the Return of Moonlight Hikes Highlight April at Red Rock State Park
Sedona AZ (April 1, 2013) – April marks the return of Moonlight Hikes at Red Rock State Park, and also features Randall Reynolds, the official Jack and Helen Frye historian and archivist, presenting a fascinating program on the Fryes and their House of Apache Fires on Sunday, April 7th, at 2:00 PM at Red Rock State Park. The Jack and Helen Frye Story will be a pictorial overview that also highlights Red Rock State Park and the House of Apache Fires. The Park is located at 4060 Lower Red Rock Loop Road, and the presentation is part of their popular Sunday Lecture Series. The presentation will be held in the Park Theatre. Seating is limited so reservations are required for the program by calling 928-282-6907.
Reynolds’ interest in the Fryes and the House of Apache Fires began when he volunteered at Red Rock State Park as a site host in 2003 and 2008. He realized Jack and Helen’s association with their former ranch, part of which is now the Park, was largely undocumented. He began exploring Helen’s history first, as she was associated with the property longer than Jack.
The program will feature information about Jack’s career as the architect and president of Transcontinental and Western Air, Inc. (TWA), as well as Helen’s history, including when she was married to Cornelius Vanderbilt, Jr. Their time as a couple, including the development and building of the dream home that became known as the House of Apache Fires, will be illustrated with many anecdotes and slides. In 1941, Jack flew his private plane, a 1937 Lockheed 12, over the property that is now Red Rock State Park. He and Helen were awed by the beauty and became determined to build in the area. Sedona had no airport and the area was so rugged that the ranch they developed could only be seen from the air.
The Fryes purchased their Sedona property in the summer of 1941. The land on which they built their house was actually their second parcel, the first being what is now Cross Creek Ranch. Their history is fascinating and the program will celebrate the glory years with TWA and Sedona! After the initial history is presented, there will be a narrated slide show that explains all of the images, followed by an opportunity to ask questions about Jack and Helen and the House.
Randall Reynolds grew up in the Northwest and moved to Sedona in 1987. He has since lived in Santa Fe, Tucson, and Alpine. For the last ten years, he has traveled the Western United States extensively researching the Jack and Helen Frye story. A former employee of United Airlines with a life-long interest in commercial aviation, he was also inspired by his uncle, a veteran pilot with United Airlines, who knew Jack Frye personally. His research gradually morphed into the largest archive in the world documenting the history of a very fascinating couple.
The program itself is free of charge, after an entry fee to the Park of $10.00 per car of four adults.
Geology Hike, Sunday, April 14, 2013, 2:00 PM: Spring is perfect to join an experienced guide who leads a hike focusing on the area’s geology. You will learn why the rocks are red, where they came from, where they are going, and more. The hike includes the Eagle’s Nest Trail for great views while also learning about the geology. More than a guided hike, it’s an interpretive experience for beginners as well as advanced geologists. The hike lasts approximately two hours and has a 250 feet elevation climb. A knowledgeable guide will explain the rock formations that create the scenic backdrop of Red Rock State Park. Bring water and wear suitable shoes.
Moonlight Hike, Thursday, April 25, 2013: The Moonlight Hike is among the most popular interpretive hikes at the Park. Led by a naturalist, it gives hikers the rare opportunity to enjoy the sunset and moonrise from an overlook and return by the light of the moon, while also having the chance to learn about Sedona and its surrounding areas. Verde Valley and park history, as well as archeology, geology, botany, and riparian wildlife information, is offered. The hike lasts two to 2 1/2 hours and covers a distance of approximately two miles.
Rangers ask hikers to arrive approximately 30 minutes before starting time to insure participation. No late arrivals can be allowed and reservations are required! When you call 928-282-6907, the arrival time will be given. Wear suitable clothing and shoes (prepare for cool nights) and bring water, a flashlight and insect spray. A $5.00 per person program fee is charged at the time of the reservation. There is also a $10.00 entrance fee to the park for a car of four adults. Program fees are non-refundable unless the park must cancel the hike after your arrival.
Wednesday and Saturday Bird Walks, 8:00 AM: April bird walks begin at 8:00 AM on Wednesday and Saturday mornings. Bird enthusiasts join a naturalist for a guided walk directed at beginning and advanced birders. Bring your own binoculars; only a limited number are available for loan from the park. Visitors will see many birds who make the park their home. The Hummingbird Patio is an excellent spot to start your tour. Another good viewing point is the visitor center roof. Most year-round birds are found in the riparian area next to Oak Creek or along the field behind the visitor center. The Audubon Society has designated Red Rock State Park as an Important Birding Area because of the many species who live or visit here.
Daily Guided Nature Walks and Activities, 10:00 AM and 2:00 PM: At 10:00 AM daily, a naturalist leads a guided nature walk of one and a half to two hours to introduce visitors to the riparian ecosystem of Oak Creek. Subjects discussed may include plants, wildlife, geology, history, and archaeology. Guided hikes are a learning experience allowing participants to take part in question and answer sessions. In the afternoon, the park hosts a 45-minute guest speaker or ranger / naturalist-led activity at 2:00 PM. Programs may include a nature hike, a special presentation, or an educational / nature video.
Hike on Your Own! The family-oriented trail system is well marked for safety and enjoyment if you explore on your own. Five miles of trails have interconnecting loops leading to red rock vistas or along the lush greenery of Oak Creek. The three major loops are connected along the riparian corridor by the Kisva Trail which also leads to the short loop of the Yavapai Ridge Trail. The Javelina Trail takes you into the pinon/juniper woodlands and back to the other loops. Detailed information is available at the Visitor Center. Bikes and horses are allowed on designated routes.
Junior Rangers: A Junior Ranger program is available for children between the ages of six and twelve. Junior Rangers pledge their part in helping preserve the beauty of the park for everyone! Junior Ranger booklets, available at the Visitor Center, have activities to complete and, once approved by a Ranger, the newest Junior Ranger at Red Rock State Park is sworn in after taking the pledge and receiving a Junior Ranger button.
Visitor Center and Theatre: The Park Visitor Center features many displays about the area’s geology, archaeology, flora and fauna, including an interactive relief map of Sedona and computer programs about various park features, including the House of Apache Fires. The popular video, “The Natural Wonders of Sedona”, narrated by local voice-over artist John Conway, is shown several times daily in the Park Theatre. Aerial explorations reveal ancient Indian ruins and dramatic landscapes, colorful desert wildflowers, and local wildlife.
Join us at the park in April–or at any time of year! Whether you choose to take part in a planned activity, or hike and explore on your own, it will be a memorable day. See you at Red Rock State Park!
Red Rock State Park, 4050 Lower Red Rock Loop Road, Sedona. Park hours are 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM; Visitor Center, 9:00 AM to 5:00 PM. Entrance fee is $10.00 per vehicle, up to four adults. The Arizona State Park Annual Fee is available for $75.00 (some restrictions apply). www.azstateparks.com, www.benefactorsrrsp.org, www.azstateparks.com/parks/RERO