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A picturesque view of Schnebly Hill greets tourists when they pop in at the new Sedona Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Center on Forest Road in Uptown.

By Trista Steers

Larson Newspapers

A picturesque view of Schnebly Hill greets tourists when they pop in at the new Sedona Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Center on Forest Road in Uptown.

Large picture windows facing Hwy. 89A give visitors their first glimpse of what Sedona has to offer.

"I think this is a fantastic first impression to share with them," Chamber President and CEO Jennifer Wesselhoff told a crowd gathered for a dedication ceremony Wednesday, Oct. 3.

Community leaders stood in the center’s plaza, constructed thanks to a generous donation from Larson Newspapers, while Wesselhoff, Mayor Pud Colquitt and Chamber Board of Directors Chairman Edd Zielinski talked about the many people who contributed to the center’s remodeling project.

The center, Zielinski said, is "truly a symbol of the generosity of this community."

Bob Larson, Larson Newspapers publisher, former chamber officer and current chamber member, said that as Sedona’s major media source, his organization’s sponsorship of Sedona Red Rock News Plaza, shows the newspapers’ commitment to serving the community.

"We just thought it was our duty," Larson said.

The Lions Club — which donated the land to the chamber in the 1960s — was also honored for its
contribution with a plaque on the outside wall of the center.

The building was named after the late Dr. Ray Elliott, a longtime Sedona resident who originally owned the land.

The center opened two weeks ago, moving back to its original home on Forest Road from a temporary location in Sinagua Plaza.

Construction started last winter and Colquitt said the center’s new face fits in perfectly with the rest of Uptown. The rustic architecture makes the building
look as if its been there all along.

Sedona needed a warm, friendly visitors center, Colquitt said, to welcome the thousands of tourists who residents like to share Sedona with.

"We’re alive and kicking and that’s good. That’s healthy," Colquitt said.

The center is staffed by four of the chamber’s approximate 70 volunteers who give visitors information on anything from where to stay to which trail to hike for various levels of difficulty. Eventually, three electronic kiosks will also allow visitors to access information on their own.

 

 

Trista Steers can be reached at 282-7795, Ext. 129, or e-mail to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.


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