The City of Chandler's history has a largely agricultural basis, having been named for Dr. A. J. Chandler, a veterinarian and a significant landholder in the area. In 1954, the year of Dr. Chandler's death, Chandler became a city. It has experienced terrific growth ever since. Since 1980 it has grown in population by more than 150,000. Just as significant as the population growth is Chandler's economic diversification, adding manufacturing and technology components to the agricultural economy.
Here are my top picks for places to go in Chandler:
On the first Wednesday of every month Historic Downtown Chandler becomes the place to browse local artists' work and visit the downtown merchants and restaurants.
More than 100 acres of wetlands and desert habitats, hiking and biking trails, picnic areas and urban fishing. The Environmental Education Center hosts nature exhibits, classes and programs for all ages.
Hamilton Aquatic Center was named the "2001 Outstanding Facility" by the Arizona Parks and Recreation Association! Enjoy a variety of amenities including a zero depth play pool, current river, two water slides and an eight-lane competition pool. The pool is located at Arizona Avenue and Ocotillo.
The Chandler Center for the Arts, located in Historic Downtown Chandler, is a world-class facility that showcases many talents, from The London City Opera to Jay Leno as well as The Nutcracker.
The 35,000 square-foot park has been designed for all skaters no matter how skilled. This exciting and unique facility is located at the Snedigar Sportsplex. This skate park is a free/non-supervised facility for use by skateboarders and in-line skaters.
The City of Chandler has several public libraries. Nearly a million people visit Chandler public libraries each year. They check out more than 1.2 million items including books, videos, CDs, and audio books! There is access to the World Wide Web using the library's computers.
Take a step back in time at the Chandler Historical Museum. The facility, located at 178 E. Commonwealth Avenue, displays artifacts from Chandler's long and storied past. New exhibits are displayed regularly. Entrance is free and the museum is open Monday through Saturday, 11 a.m. to 4 p.m., holidays excluded.
Most affordable Nicklaus Design 36 holes in Arizona located between Arizona Avenue and McQueen Road on Riggs Road. The 18 hole, par 71 championship (long) course measures more than 6800 yards from the championship tees. Nicklaus Design took great care in the creation of the par 59 short course to give it the same feel as the long course.
The festival is a community family event featuring live ostrich races and ostrich-themed activities, national and regional entertainment, Saturday morning parade, carnival, food, an interactive kids activities, and much more. The City of Chandler has a colorful and long standing tradition of Ostrich Ranching. Chandler and Maricopa County led the nation in raising ostriches for their stylish and expensive plumes. The Chandler Chamber of Commerce created the Ostrich Festival in 1989.
If you feel the need for speed, you'll get your fill at this auto race that takes place at Firebird International Raceway, one of the fastest quarter mile tracks in the U.S.
The annual Jazz Festival takes place in Downtown Chandler and offers residents and visitors an opportunity to enjoy a fine selection of jazz musicians. The weekend long event takes place in the spring each year.
Historic Downtown Chandler is full of unique shops, restaurants and galleries to meet all tastes. And while you're there, take some time to browse through the antique shops at Market Square, just a short walk away on Wall Street. This quaint garden setting is filled with antique shops, a homemade fudge store, an old-fashioned restaurant and much, much more.
Chandler Fashion Center, also known as Chandler Mall, is a new concept in shopping experiences. With anchor stores like Nordstrom, Dillard's, Macy's and Sears; and restaurants such as the Cheesecake Factory; this one million plus square foot development has something for everyone. The mall features an outdoor urban village, which is home to a Harkins 20-plex cinema and many restaurants including P.F. Chang's, BJ's Restaurant and Brewery, Kona Grill, Garduno's, Big City Grill and others. The mall also is home to The Boulevard shops; 225,000 square feet of upscale, high-end retailers.
Rawhide is an 1880s themed western town, complete with wild west shootouts, wagon rides, gold panning, burro rides, and more. An Arizona tradition for both tourists and locals, Rawhide moved from its Scottsdale home of 35 years, and opened in its new location in Chandler in 2006.
Enjoy your visit to Chandler!