Marana Founder’s Day returns for its 45th anniversary after a two-year pandemic hiatus this Saturday, March 19. Head out to the Marana Municipal Complex, 11555 W. Civic Center Dr., for a day of revelry, history, and plenty of sun.
“I always look at it as kind of like, the Town's love letter to the community,” said Shelby Scheer, special events supervisor from Marana Parks and Recreation.
The Town of Marana was incorporated on March 21, 1977. After the Town was incorporated, founding members of the Town wanted to celebrate the incorporation with an annual event. This led to the Founder’s Day celebration we know today.
Adults and children alike can enjoy the events planned for this weekend. Attendees can watch the local parade from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. titled, “My Favorite Things (About Marana)”. Get a good viewing spot along Marana Main Street and W. Civic Center Drive. Local businesses will participate along with horse riders, dancers, and the Marana Unified School District.
After the kickoff parade, Marana citizens are invited to participate in free events at Civic Center Dr. Children have access to the Creation Station, where they can create art projects to take home later. They can also decorate Chalk Art Alley with their own 18x18-inch sidewalk square. The alley will be a beautiful walkway by the end of the day. The family fun zone will have bouncy castles and obstacles courses available to all ages.
While the kids get their wiggles out, adults can look forward to great musical guests like classic rock group Good Trouble (11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.) and country-bluegrass Freddy Parish Band (2:00 to 4:00 p.m.). In between those performances, the Tucson Chinese cultural center will perform the Lion dance from 1:30 to 2:00 p.m.
“When the railroad was built through Tucson and came through Marana there was a large history of Chinese immigrants that wound up settling in Marana, we have the Tucson Chinese Cultural Center coming to do the (lion) dance, which is a traditional Chinese experience,” Scheer said.
Chinese immigrants arrived in the Tucson area during the 1880s to build the Southern Pacific Railroad. It is important to recognize that Chinese immigrants were instrumental to the history of Marana and were some of the first families to settle in the Town.
There will also be a market with over 30 local businesses and 20 food trucks to put your money back into the local Marana economy! Don’t forget to check out the cornhole tournament and register early on the Town’s website to play.
“It's kind of the best way to celebrate a town like Marana where we can show off all of these skills that all the people in the area have that can make people happy,” Scheer said.
Visit the Town website for more information at maranaaz.gov/town-calendar/2022/3/19/marana-founders-day.