Arizona Highways

No matter where you are, Arizona Highways brings a piece of home

No matter where you are, Arizona Highways brings a piece of home

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No matter where you are, Arizona Highways brings a piece of home

No matter where you are, Arizona Highways brings a piece of home

By Doug Nick / ADOT Communications
November 6, 2020

Have you ever traveled far away and saw something familiar that you would never have suspected would appear thousands of miles from home?

It’s happened to a few of us over the years. One of our colleagues here at ADOT once traveled to Japan and encountered a subway rider wearing an Arizona Cardinals jersey. 

Random. 

Do you know what isn’t random? Finding a piece of Arizona as far away as Asia or actually on just about every continent on Earth (possibly even Antarctica). That piece of our iconic state is the world-famous Arizona Highways magazine. 

Pardon us a little humble-brag, but Arizona Highways is awesome and is published right here at ADOT.

It gets around, though. People all over the globe are familiar with Arizona Highways, which has outstanding photography, great writing, layout and design, and, well, it is just a cool publication all-around.

You don’t have to take our word for it. As a recent news release pointed out, Arizona Highways just took home not one, but at least two full armloads of awards for excellence. This photo is the cover to an essay it just won a gold award for. 

We would like to congratulate everyone who makes Arizona Highways come to life every month to show people all over our planet what a uniquely colorful state Arizona is in every way. 

And if it is in Antarctica, we hope anyone there who reads it feels a little warmer.

More renown for Arizona Highways magazine

More renown for Arizona Highways magazine

I-17 101 traffic interchange

More renown for Arizona Highways magazine

More renown for Arizona Highways magazine

October 29, 2020

Arizona Highways, the world-renowned magazine published by the Arizona Department of Transportation, has earned more recognition for its excellence in words, pictures and design.

In its annual awards program, the International Regional Magazine Association (IRMA) awarded Arizona Highways a total of 19 honors in categories including essay writing, illustration, photography and art direction. The magazine also received an Award of Merit for its February 2019 feature celebrating the 100th anniversary of the designation of Grand Canyon as a national park.

This is the sixth straight year that Arizona Highways has received at least 16 IRMA awards. 

“We are privileged to live in a state known not only for its iconic beauty but for its rich and diverse mixture of history and colorful personalities,” said Kelly Mero, publisher of Arizona Highways. “Arizona, its people and its history are the real stars of the show and make it possible for us to receive awards like these. This recognition is testament to that - and to the tremendous people both inside and outside of ADOT who collaborate to make Arizona Highways come alive every month.”

IRMA is a non-profit association of 25 regional magazines from across North America. This is the 40th annual awards competition, and entries are judged by a panel of magazine industry experts from outside of IRMA. 

Arizona Highways received the following awards:

Gold award winners:

Essay: Prayers for Snow | December 2019 | Craig Childs

Nature & Environment Feature: Hanging on for Dear Life | October 2019 | Annette McGivney

Art & Culture Feature: These Generations of Weaving | March 2019 | Danielle Geller

Headline & Deck: Great Balls of Fire | April 2019 | Robert Stieve

General Feature: The Unsettling Story of Ken Patrick | January 2020 | Robert Stieve

Silver award winners: 

Profiles: Esther Henderson & Chuck Abbott | September 2019 | Matt Jaffe

Historic Feature: The Early Photographers | September 2019 | Robert Stieve

Magazine Writer of the Year: Matt Jaffe

Magazine Photographer of the Year: Jack Dykinga

Art Direction Single Story: Sandwich Tour | April 2019 | Keith Whitney

Overall Art Direction: March 2019 | April 2019 | January 2020

Department: The Journal | January 2020 | February 2020 | March 2020

Bronze award winners: 

Photo Series (35,000 or more): Not Just Any Old Place | February | Edited by Jeff Kida

Portrait Photo: Wally Brown | March 2019 | Mylo Fowler

Illustration: Wildflowers (series) | March 2020 | Dyana Hesson

Column: July 2019, August 2019, February 2020 | Robert Stieve

Travel Feature: No Exit Route | November 2019 | Morgan Sjogren

Cover: March 2019

Award of Merit:

Special Focus: Grand Canyon Centennial | February 2019

Founded in 1925, Arizona Highways is dedicated to promoting travel to and through the state of Arizona. In addition to the world-renowned magazine known for spectacular landscape photography, Arizona Highways publishes travel guide books, calendars and other products to promote travel in Arizona. The magazine has subscribers in all 50 states and more than 100 countries.

Learn more at ArizonaHighways.com

Arizona Highways named best Instagram account of 2020

Arizona Highways named best Instagram account of 2020

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Arizona Highways named best Instagram account of 2020

Arizona Highways named best Instagram account of 2020

By John LaBarbera / ADOT Communications
October 2, 2020
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

A post shared by Arizona Highways (@arizonahighways) on

Last year, The Phoenix New Times bestowed ADOT with a wonderful honor: Naming us the best government agency Twitter for 2019.

Well, one year later and they have awarded ADOT a new social media accolade: Arizona Highways has been named the Best Instagram account in their 2020 Best of Phoenix issue.

You’ll get no argument here! 

Arizona Highways started life as a 10-page pamphlet more than 99 years ago in July, 1921. It launched its familiar magazine format in 1925 and has served as a bastion of Arizona’s allure ever since.

A few years ago, Arizona Highways entered the digital age with an Instagram account that dazzles and delights its more than 121,000 followers from all over the world.

A fun snippet from the New Times kudos states the magazine was once banned by the Soviet Union and other Eastern Bloc countries for being subversive: “The Arizona depicted in its pages — glorious desert sunsets, majestic mountain ranges, an almost impossibly romantic Western lifestyle — is so alluring that in 1965, the Soviet Union reportedly banned Arizona Highways on the grounds that it was propaganda.”

If it’s propaganda to show the beauty and geologic diversity of our great state, we are guilty as charged. And we’re not kidding about that diversity. Deserts aside, Arizona is home to lakefronts, pine trees, snow, mountains and green, green grass. Arizona Highways’ Instagram account can show you all of that and more.

If you’re in the mood for unbeatable Arizona visuals, follow Arizona Highways on Instagram and never look at the Grand Canyon State the same way again.

Calling all photographers: Show your wild(life) side

Calling all photographers: Show your wild(life) side

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Calling all photographers: Show your wild(life) side

Calling all photographers: Show your wild(life) side

By Garin Groff / ADOT Communications
July 10, 2020

Every year, Arizona Highways asks for amateur and professional photographers to share their most stunning images of Arizona’s scenery. But now the magazine, published by ADOT, is asking for something a little wilder.

Actually, the magazine wants only the wildest things in Arizona: photos of our wildlife.

The images are for the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s 14th annual wildlife photo contest, which Arizona Highways is helping to promote. The top 12 of these photos will appear in the 2021 Arizona Wildlife Views calendar, published in that magazine’s November-December issue. And if your photo is judged the best in show, it will grace the cover of Arizona Wildlife Views. The photos may also appear in Arizona Highways.

If you’re looking for inspiration, you may not need to look any farther than your own yard. Just ask last year’s winner, Julie Curtis, who took her winning photo of two Harris’ antelope squirrels from an open window to her front yard. Julie shares the story behind her photo in this article from the May-June issue of Arizona Wildlife Views, which serves as a reminder that we can enjoy wildlife in our everyday lives.

We’d love to see your best wildlife photos. Keep in mind that photos must be of wildlife species that are native to Arizona and taken in Arizona settings. Also, images are evaluated on creativity, photographic quality, effectiveness in conveying the unique character of the subject, and whether the images meet basic size and formatting requirements. Submissions are due by 5 p.m. Friday, Aug. 14. See complete rules and tips at azgfd.gov/photocontest

Happy photographing, and we can’t wait to see your best!

Arizona Highways contest entries bring the "wow"

Arizona Highways contest entries bring the "wow"

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Arizona Highways contest entries bring the "wow"

Arizona Highways contest entries bring the "wow"

By David Rookhuyzen / ADOT Communications
May 28, 2020

Given a camera, what natural beauty can you find across the state of Arizona?

Every year, Arizona Highways magazine, published by ADOT, asks that question to thousands of professional and amateur photographers, and it's safe to say that we are never disappointed with the result.

That certainly holds true this year as the magazine has released the top three photos from its 2020 competition. As we told you about last week, the top prize goes to Joe Vermette of Tucson, who with a little preparation work and astronomical know-how, captured a truly stunning shot of the Milky Way over Monument Valley. That's his image here, at top, which will also grace the cover of Arizona Highways this September. Aside from that exposure, Vermette also received an in-state photo workshop worth $2,500. Not too shabby.

Judging is based on the fundamentals of photography – composition, lighting, framing, etc – but there's also a "wow" factor. We think you'll agree that this arch of stars and nebulae above the majestic buttes is the definition of "wow."

But "wow" is also where the second-place entry comes in. You won't be surprised to know that Vermette's photo fell into the landscape category of the contest. But the runner-up went a different way and entered a special shot in the macro, or up-close, category. Joe Neely from Phoenix managed to capture a candid moment of two pollen-covered bees snuggled up with each other inside of a flower along US 60 near Globe. It's a fantastic shot in an unexpected place.

Finally, we have something unexpected, but in a familiar place. The red rocks of Sedona are known around the world, but there's always a special thrill seeing them dusted in white. Michael Wilson from Prescott went a step further and found this small waterfall into a semi-frozen pond. That's his shot there to the lower left and manages to make Sedona look all the more inviting, even during the winter. Both Wilson and Neely have won prize packages from Tempe Camera. 

This is Arizona Highways' 12th annual photo contest, but the magazine has been delivering fantastic shots of Arizona for years. It started as a trade newsletter in 1921 before being spun off into its magazine form a few years later. A few years ago, we even did a blog taking you behind the scenes to talk about its operation and, yes, those gorgeous photos. 

Nearly 4,000 people submitted photos for this year's contest. You can check out some of the honorable mentions at ArizonaHighways.com. While you are there, feel free to also sign up for a year's subscription of the print edition – just in time to get a physical copy with Vermette's Milky Way photo splashed across the cover.

DeGrazia Foundation and Arizona Highways magazine commemorate painter Ted DeGrazia

DeGrazia Foundation and Arizona Highways magazine commemorate painter Ted DeGrazia

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DeGrazia Foundation and Arizona Highways magazine commemorate painter Ted DeGrazia

DeGrazia Foundation and Arizona Highways magazine commemorate painter Ted DeGrazia

By Dani Weber / ADOT Communications
September 10, 2019

This summer, the DeGrazia Foundation celebrated its namesake’s 110th birthday at the artist’s Gallery in the Sun in Tucson. Collaborating with Arizona Highways magazine, published by ADOT, the gallery has put together a collection of the dozens of works featured in one of Arizona’s most treasured publications.

“It was clear even from early issues that (Arizona Highways editor) Raymond Carlson made friends with DeGrazia and tried to promote him,” Curator Jim Jenkins said. “Just being aware of his relationship with the magazine, I always wanted to do an exhibit. So when we got the request from Arizona Highways magazine, it was perfect synchronicity, and I just thought, ‘We’ve got to do this.’”

Working with Arizona Highways, Jenkins collected back issues of the magazine and combed the archive for stories involving DeGrazia – and there was plenty to choose from. In addition to the online resources Arizona Highways made available, a board member to the foundation had collected thousands of issues of the magazine over the years and donated them to the gallery. Jenkins was able to find every single issue that featured DeGrazia’s – 70 in total.

“There was so much,” Jenkins said. “So much information, so many stories didn’t make it into the final exhibit. I could’ve filled two rooms, but I just didn’t have the space.”

DeGrazia’s relationship with Arizona Highways was a mutually beneficial one. The magazine exposed his paintings to an international audience, and DeGrazia’s growing popularity grew the magazine’s readership. Now with this exhibit, interest in the artist’s work has been refreshed.

“People who grew up with DeGrazia have gotten older and possibly passed away,” Jenkins said. “That legacy has started fade, but this exhibit has revitalized it.”

With such a wide diversity of fans, Arizona Highways magazine has long served as a common ground, according to Jenkins. Whether it’s DeGrazia’s social realism from the 1940s or his much-loved works for the magazine’s Christmas issues starting in the 1950s, the exhibit of the artist’s work for Arizona Highways has found a modern-day audience.

“The exhibit has had a very warm reception,” said Lance Laber, executive director of the DeGrazia Foundation. “The opening of the exhibit coincided with the issue featuring DeGrazia’s work, and it was a big event. About four or five hundred people showed up to the opening, and people are still enjoying it.”

Laber has extended a warm invitation for anyone and everyone to see the exhibit for themselves. “Come in and see some of these beautiful, original oil paintings and water colors DeGrazia painted over the years. You won’t be disappointed.”

The exhibit at the Gallery in the Sun in Tucson will run until Jan. 29, 2020.

Governor honors partnership between Arizona Highways, State Parks

Governor honors partnership between Arizona Highways, State Parks

I-17 101 traffic interchange

Governor honors partnership between Arizona Highways, State Parks

Governor honors partnership between Arizona Highways, State Parks

September 3, 2019

PHOENIX – Governor Doug Ducey has honored Arizona Highways and Arizona State Parks and Trails with his Good Government Award for a collaboration that includes a one-year subscription to the magazine when someone purchases an annual parks pass.

The award celebrates innovations stemming from the Arizona Management System, which empowers all state employees to continually improve processes and value to customers.

Arizona Highways, published by the Arizona Department of Transportation, has added 12,500 subscribers since the promotion launched in July 2018, while the magazine promotes standard and premium annual passes available from Arizona State Parks and Trails. Additionally, Arizona State Parks and Trails has seen a nearly 11% increase in pass sales and promotes Arizona Highways magazine on its website, via social media channels, in parks and on vehicles throughout the state.

The partnership has helped both the magazine and Arizona State Parks and Trails better promote travel and tourism around Arizona.

“Governor Ducey has set a goal of making Arizona the No. 1 place to visit and recreate,” said Kelly Mero, publisher of Arizona Highways. “This innovative partnership developed using tools from the Arizona Management System has helped increase awareness of our state’s hidden gems and encourage visitors and residents alike to get out and explore Arizona.”

Using structured problem-solving under the Arizona Management System championed by Governor Ducey, representatives of Arizona Highways and Arizona State Parks and Trails identified needs and goals as well as responsibilities and roles. One key to this effective collaboration was Arizona Highways developing a strong understanding of Arizona State Parks and Trails’ membership model and customers.

“This partnership showcases what two agencies can do when they work together toward a common goal,” said Bob Broscheid, executive director of Arizona State Parks and Trails. “Combining the 35 state parks with the gorgeous photography and amazing storytelling found in Arizona Highways Magazine is a natural fit and a great collaboration.”

For more information on annual passes available from Arizona State Parks and Trails, or on any of the 35 state parks, please visit azstateparks.com.

Arizona Highways, known internationally for showcasing state’s landscapes, wildlife and history through stunning photography and compelling stories, has subscribers in all 50 states and more than 100 countries. It also publishes a variety of books and calendars. To learn more or to subscribe, please visit ArizonaHighways.com.

To learn more about how the Arizona Management System helps ADOT deliver value every day for Arizonans, please visit azdot.gov/AMS.