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Betty's Kitchen Interpretative

Point Of Interest


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This natural-surfaced, 1/2 mile foot trail threading through the desert riparian environment of the lower Colorado River offers visitors unique taste of the area's natural resources and settlement history. It focuses upon mammals, migratory birds, and flora specific to the riverbank environment. The trail overlooks Laguna Dam, the first dam built on the Colorado River. The terrain is relatively flat and vegetation includes native Fremont cottonwood, black willow, arrow weed, screw bean, and honey mesquite. Recreation facilities include universally accessible picnic and parking areas, restrooms, trailside benches, a fishing pier, walking bridge, and a self-guided interpretive walk. Visitors can kick off their shoes while casting a line and fishing from the pier, pack a lunch or barbecue in the picnic area, or take a stroll along the interpretive trail. No matter what time of the year, Betty's Kitchen promises visitors a glimpse at some of Arizona's wildlife, including numerous mammals, birds, fish, and reptiles. The are was undoubtedly important to local people in their search for food. Many of the native plants found in the area were a source of food and the terrace on which Betty's Kitchen sits is ideal for agriculture, Early agriculturalists were dependent on seasonal flooding to water their crops and archaeologists have assigned artifacts made by these prehistoric agriculturalists to the Patayan archaeological complex with occurred from about 700 A.D. to 1850 A.D. Historic activities in the vicinity of the Betty's Kitchen area began in the late 1850's when gold placer deposits were found along the east side of the Colorado River. Later, small farm plots were established and the construction of Laguna Dam commenced, bringing numerous homesteaders to the area. A combination cafe and bar was established during the 1930's or 1940's known as "Betty's Kitchen" for Mrs. Betty Davidson who worked at the cafe. Betty's Kitchen is a very important part of our community and is also a favorite field trip destination for the local schools because it is so close to town. A Betty's Kitchen Watchable Wildlife and Interpretive Area Teacher's Guide is also available for teachers to prepare students for their visit and also provides additional learning tools for use in the classroom.