Kinsley Ranch

Amado, Santa Cruz Valley, Arizona

ZIP CODE: 85640

Midway between Nogales and Tucson; Arivaca Junction
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Kinsley Ranch, from 1930 (?) to 1960 (?) was owned by Otho Kinsley Sr. It eventually combined a bar, restaurant, swimming pool, service station, dance hall, rodeo arena, airport, lake and a farm. The entire place was about a section in size--640 acres. Much of the land was undeveloped desert. The public saw and used the businesses along the road, US Highway 89. A good set of pictures is not currently available--anyone willing to contribute pictures and stories of the events and places along the Santa Cruz Valley from the Santa Rita's to Arivaca would sure be appreciated. The time frame should be from 1920 to 1965.

"Everyone" has seen this area of the Valley. The surrey scene in the film Oklahoma (45 sec in?), along the lake, was filmed just down the road at the Canoa Ranch. A modicum of consideration was given to using the Kinsley Ranch Lake for the film(according to Otho).

The arena picture is taken facing east from just down the hill from the airport runway, a dirt strip. In the background are the Santa Rita Mountains. The wooden dance hall and service station were just north of the Arivaca Road. If you look carefully you can see the shimmer of the lake on the far side of the Nogales-Tucson highway. The farm was beyond the lake. South of the Arivaca Road was the bar-restaurant-swimming pool-motel(Now the Cow Palace).

Kinsley Ranch Rodeo Arena-click for 150 kByte version.
Kinsley Ranch Rodeo Arena
The box at the right-center may be Mr. Kinsley. This picture links to a 150 kbyte version.

Click on picture to switch between past and present.(Javascript)
Netscape and older browsers click here

This picture is a fake--JASC's Paint Shop Pro was used to erase the present day details at Kinsley Ranch (Arivaca Junction). You can "see" the pool (turquoise), dance hall (yellow), the rodeo arena(tan), the lake (blue) and a representation of the airport. When you click on the picture you see the USGS original with the freeway and housing. Similar transformations have taken place all along the valley.


LaVerne's Photo Album Page...which includes a snapshot inside the dance hall at Kinsley's Ranch 1950. Nice page to visit.

Santa Cruz Valley-1954 article. An article from the Arizona Republic.

Sopori School was the one room school for the area.

Rodeo and riders article, 1977 courtesy of the Bud Parker family.

Rodeo hype on the occasion of Bud Parker's "first" rodeo.

On Bud Parker. More on Bud putting on a rodeo.

-map, links, more pictures(scanner at library) is to conservation plan -

Santa Cruz Valley Tour

A Life Magazine Picture of the Week (?) of the Ballerina Bull

Maps of Arizona


Assembled by ovk. Last updated 6/21/2002.