In 1864, Prescott became the first capital of the Arizona Territory. In those days, the town was anchored by the infamous “Whiskey Row” with shady ladies and Wild West iconic guests like Wyatt Earp and Doc Holliday. Adding to the cultural experience are over 700 buildings on the National Register of Historic Buildings including the recently restored 500-seat Elks Opera House, which is back to hosting live performances.
Also on the Registry is the Yavapai Courthouse Plaza. In 2008, the Courthouse Plaza was recognized as one of the first ten “Great Public Places” in America by the American Planning Association. The plaza enjoys the select company of such iconic places as New York City’s Central Park and Santa Monica Beach in California. More than 130 activities occur annually including arts and crafts shows, concerts, dancing, outdoor movies, and other special events. People are always seen on the plaza. Walking around the plaza is quite popular with the locals (3 laps = 1 mile). The granite downtown Courthouse set among green lawns and spreading American elm trees reflects the Midwestern and New England background of Prescott’s early pioneers, thus coining the phrase, “Everybody’s Hometown”.