The Phippen Museum Fall Gathering is a longstanding tradition that commemorates its grand opening in 1984, bringing together old friends and new faces for a special evening of great fun, food, fine art, and live Western entertainment. But it’s also a chance to honor our rich, local ranching and cowboy heritage through a special induction ceremony for the Arizona Rancher & Cowboy Hall of Fame. This year’s inductee is Marion Alexander Perkins (1848-1927), founding father of the famous Perkins Ranch and Perkinsville, Arizona.

This year’s 17th annual celebration is at 5:30 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 16, when museum members and guests will come together to enjoy three current art exhibits and planned festivities, including a ranch-style dinner from Catering by Liz, live entertainment with musicians Danny Romero & The Band, as well as a live art demonstration by award-winning artist Gretchen Lopez. The evening will conclude with the unique Hall of Fame induction ceremony and an exciting drawing for Ancestral Voices, a large bronze sculpture by talented, western fine art sculptor Craig Bergsgaard.

“This event commemorates the evening our community and ranching families from throughout the region gathered in support of the Phippen’s grand opening,” said Edd Kellerman, the museum’s executive director. “But it’s also become the perfect opportunity for us to remember and honor our rich ranching and cowboy heritage, great art of the American West and George Phippen’s inspirational life and lasting legacy.”

On July 5, 1899, Marion, along with his wife, Annie, three sons and three small daughters, and several neighbors, set out for Arizona. Ranch wagons were filled with their household goods and the women and small children rode in a buggy or on a buckboard, arriving in an area that would eventually become Perkinsville. In the earliest days, the Perkins’ ranch sold beef to feed the miners and copper-mine population in Jerome, which was soaring in the early 1900s. Later, to ship cattle to market, the Perkins cowboys drove the herd to loading pens at Ash Fork or Del Rio Springs, a news release stated.

So be sure to make your reservation for this fun-filled, commemorative celebration in honor of all those, past and present, who have made the Phippen Museum the local treasure it is today.

General admission is $50 for members and $60 for guests, with children 8 and younger admitted for free. Tickets for the sculpture drawing will be available until the actual drawing at the end of the evening ($5 each or five for $20). Act fast because reservations are required, and seating is limited. Call 928-778-1385 for tickets.

Information provided by the Phippen Museum.

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