BENSON — Time for the community to kick up their collective heels. The wait is over for the Benson/San Pedro Valley Chamber of Commerce and City of Benson’s Butterfield Stagecoach Days Saturday and Sunday.
Parade, living history, vendors, food and entertainment, and don’t forget the two-day Grand Canyon Professional Rodeo Association Butterfield Rodeo which has grown to become Butterfield’s staple event at the rodeo grounds at The Arena Bar.
Themed “A Living History,” organizers have pulled out all the stops for the weekend activities at Apache Park, 150 W. 6th St., adjacent to City Hall, and which will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. each day.
The GFWC Benson Juniors Butterfield Parade kicks off the celebration Saturday morning at 9 a.m., followed by the park activities that includes the Mormon Battalion Foundation Encampment and Buffalo Soldiers “as they reenact history,” along with an action-packed roster featuring The Cameo Ladies of Tombstone tea and fashion show, Native Flute by Danny Many Horses, Mariachi, Rockabilly, Western Music, Folkloric and Aztec Dancers, geology digs, mini train, artifacts from the Benson Historical Museum, Native American displays and “Kids Kove.”
“It’s two days of fun and activities for the entire family,” chamber officials said. “Let’s join together to make these events memorable.”
The Butterfield Stage from the Overland Mail Company had two stage stations in the Benson area — Dragoon Springs and San Pedro River Station. The two served as stopping points for the Celerity wagons that carried both passengers and mail on the Butterfield Overland Trail from 1858 to 1861. The Butterfield was a 2,800-mile stretch that connected St. Louis to San Francisco, with a section of the route passing through the area.
Vendor and sponsorship applications are available by visiting bensonchamberaz.org or at the chamber office, 168 E. 4th St.