Travel Tips & Adventures

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Travel to Clarkdale, AZ

Singing the words to the Monkees’ old hit, “Last Train to Clarksville” and replacing “Clarkville” with Clarkdale seemed appropriate because we stopped in Clarkdale on our way to the Verde Canyon Railroad (see Friday, February 26 blog).A small town, Clarkdale was founded to serve as a mining community in 1912 and, with the mines closing up, the town mostly survives with retirees and the connection to the Verde Canyon Railroad.  As in some small towns, the few shops they have are really good at what they do.  In this case, we’re talking about the Main Street Café and Pizzeria…

Good food at Main Street Cafe and Pizzeria

Good food at Main Street Cafe and Pizzeria

Main Street Café and Pizzeria

Since we wanted to be done with lunch and to the railroad station prior to 1:00 PM, we arrived at Main Street Café and Pizzeria shortly after they opened at 11:00 AM.  We were the first, but, eventually, not the only customers.

And, wow, what great food!  I don’t usually eat pizzas, but the Chicken Florentine pizza – personal sized – kept enticing me, so I ordered it.  It was a real bargain, too, with many toppings for only $8.  It was terrific and I was so glad I tried it! Hot, fresh ingredients, crispy thin crust, alfredo sauce with just the right flavor, big meaty chunks of chicken, fresh spinach and tomato. I was going to take some with me, but I ate the whole thing – so good!

My husband had the 1/3 lb. Angus burger with mushrooms and mozzarella, cooked medium rare as ordered.  Served on a giant, round, baguette-like fresh roll, it was quite a mouthful and he cleaned his plate.

While we ate, we looked around at the art gallery on the walls.  Our room had some quite interesting elementary school art, but the larger room had what looked like professional artists, who turned out to be high school students.  Impressive work!

Our wait staffer, Linda, is a retiree who works two days a week for some variety in life.  The chef/owner Scott does all of the cooking and is turning out some very fresh and flavorful food in the little burg.

Owner, Scott Buckley, of Main Street Cafe and Pizzeria - great food at reasonable prices

Owner, Scott Buckley, of Main Street Cafe and Pizzeria - great food at reasonable prices

Looking around Clarkdale

Before we hopped the train, we drove around Clarkdale, which didn’t take long.  It truly looked like America of years gone by.  The town square with its gazebo could be a set for “The Music Man.”

Clarkdale Town Square

Clarkdale Town Square

Most of the tidy homes are built with brick, unusual for Arizona.

The Clark Memorial Clubhouse, which is on the National Historic Register, had unusual features like a bowling alley in the basement.  There is a museum in the complex, plus a library. William Clark, the founder of the town was also the owner of the United Verde Copper Company, which was the reason for the town, since he needed a place to locate the smelter to extract copper and Jerome wasn’t working well for that. (More on Jerome next week.)

In the distance, snow-covered mountain peaks that give a view of Jerome make you feel like you might be in the Alps.

Our short visit in Clarkdale ended with our trip on the Verde Canyon Railroad and, if you can imagine a location even tinier than how we’ve described Clarkdale, Perkinsville tops that.  Perkinsville is only a few buildings, one family and some cattle.  Pretty lonely except for the visits of the Verde Canyon Railroad.

Join us Wednesday for our short travel from Clarkdale to the Blazin’ M Ranch.

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2 Responses to “Travel to Clarkdale, AZ”

  1. Amazing Recipes Says:

    [...] Travel Tips and Adventures » Blog Archive » Travel to Clarkdale, AZ [...]

  2. Kelli Petrone Says:

    Try Mile High Grill when you get to Jerome- a “Muma” burger and tater tots will change your life! The bread pudding will give you a reason to live!

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