On January 26th, we once again participated in the annual Unity Walk in Tempe, along with people from Chandler, Gilbert, Phoenix, Mesa and Glendale. It’s always a great time mingling with others who share our passion for celebrating diversity and learning from one another. And speaking of learning, there are a few things I learned at the 2019 Unity Walk.
Tempe is growing in ways I wouldn’t believe if I didn’t see it with my own eyes. My family is an ASU family going back four generations. Yet every time I find myself in Tempe, I recognize it less and less. The development on and around the campus, the growth of buildings and business around Tempe Town Lake, the condo towers near Mill Avenue and hugging the Lake, it’s all pretty mind boggling when I recall the simple town Tempe used to be when I was a student.
Despite on-going and rapid growth of Tempe, some of the old haunts are standing strong. Anyone who knows Tempe, knows the Yucca Tap Room on Southern Avenue. IT’S STILL THERE!!! After the march, we enjoyed dinner at the legendary Red Devil Italian restaurant. Haven’t been there since my college years.
Very few people walk anymore. We saw more contraptions with wheels carrying people than I ever would have imagined. Electric scooters, hover boards, bicycle looking things that don’t quite fit the bicycle category. There is a whole new generation of “wheels” that I wasn’t aware of. Throughout the walk, I wondered (out loud several times) how these scooters get charged. A little sleuthing turned up a very interesting fact. People get paid to charge these things throughout the city every day. What a great gig….except in the summer.
We have an incredibly diverse population here in the valley. People of every color, race, religion, ethnicity, sexual orientation, age, cultural affiliation showed up to march for unity. It was, as it is every year, an amazing sight to see.
We are so lucky to live in such a beautiful place. Not a new learning, but something I like to be reminded of. The lights along the bridge and around the lake, the gorgeous sunset hovering above the mountains, the amazing people…this is why I call the valley home. Next year, please join us as we participate in the 2020 Unity Walk. I guarantee a great experience and you will definitely learn a thing or two.
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