On the Avenue with Barbie®

2018 National Barbie® Doll
Collectors Convention

Area Attractions

Parks and Recreational Activities

Desert Botanical Garden

Desert Botanical GardenThe Desert Botanical Garden offers the world's finest collection of arid plants from deserts of the world in a unique outdoor setting. The Garden has more than 50,000 desert plants on display throughout five thematic trails that illustrate topics such as conservation, desert living, plants and people of the Sonoran Desert, and desert wildflowers. The Garden offers specialized tours, special events, seasonal exhibits, concerts, family activities, and a few restaurants on site.

Phoenix zoo

For over 50 years, the Zoo and its animals have amazed guests from around the globe. With exciting experiences like Stingray Bay, Monkey Village and 4-D Theater, your visit to the Zoo will be memorable for everyone. The Zoo is one of the nation's largest non-profit zoos, committed to conservation and providing experiences that motivate people to care for the natural world, in addition to great adventures.

Phoenix Mountain Preserve

Although surrounded by civilization, the Phoenix Mountains Preserve provides a variety of hikes with amazing city views and secluded valleys. Bring your dog, bike or horse on miles of pristine Sonoran Desert trails. The preserve incorporates several parks and peaks, including Lookout Mountain, Shadow Mountain, and North Mountain Park, which provides access to Shaw Butte and North Mountain. The Phoenix Mountains Park and Recreation Area and Dreamy Draw Recreation Area surround the base of 2,608-foot Piestewa Peak. Hikers can also access Camelback Mountain, the preserve's highest summit, from the Echo Canyon Recreation Area or Cholla Trailhead.


There's almost always a game happening in Phoenix. The city fields teams in all four major professional sports leagues: The NFL's Arizona Cardinals, NBA's Phoenix Suns, MLB's Arizona Diamondbacks and NHL's Arizona Coyotes. Downtown's Talking Stick Resort Arena (formerly US Airways Center) is also home to the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury and the Arena Football League's Arizona Rattlers.

Greater Phoenix hosts major sporting events every year, including college football's Fiesta Bowl; the PGA Tour's highest-attended event, the Waste Management Phoenix Open; NASCAR events each spring and fall; and Cactus League Spring Training, where fans can see the biggest names in the MLB up close as 15 teams train and play
each March.

No game happening while you're here? No worries. Both University of Phoenix Stadium and Chase Field offer public tours throughout the year allowing guests a behind-the-scenes look at the venues.


  • Heard Museum: Highlights the art and history of the region's Native American and
    Mexican Cultures
  • The Phoenix Art Museum: Features both classic and contemporary works from around the world and hosts national traveling exhibits.
  • Arizona Science Center: Offers hands-on fun with more than 300 interactive exhibits, live demonstrations, a state-of-the-art planetarium and more.
  • The Penske Racing Museum: Houses an impressive collection of cars, trophies and memorabilia from more than 40 years of Penske Racing history.
  • Musical Instrument MuseumMusical Instrument Museum (MIM): This one-of-a-kind and interactive museum displays instruments from across the globe as well as collectibles from legendary musicians.
  • Hall of Flame Fire Museum: Houses 90 fully restored pieces of fire apparatus, dating from 1725-1969. The Hall of Flame Museum has over an acre of fire history exhibits with pieces from America, France, Austria, Germany, and Japan. The museum is also home to the Hall of Heroes to honor those who have fallen.
  • Goldfield Ghost Town:  Take a trip back into the 1800s when gold mining and gun fighting was the norm. Goldfield Ghost Town is Phoenix's only authentic ghost town that offers guests the chance to learn about the past and enjoy some great entertainment. Witness an Old West gun fight performed by the Goldfield Gunfighters, pan for gold, and take a ride on Arizona's only narrow gauge train. You can even take an underground guided tour through the mines or a jeep tour across the scenic Apache Trail.

Performing Arts

  • Mesa Arts Center

Peforming ArtsOwned and operated by the City of Mesa, is a unique, architecturally stunning, international award winning facility located in the heart of downtown Mesa. Arizona's largest arts center is home to four theaters, five art galleries, and 14 art studios. Guests, patrons, and students come to Mesa Arts Center to enjoy the finest live entertainment and performances, world-class visual art exhibitions, and outstanding arts education classes. The facility is an architectural showpiece and a destination for visitors to the Phoenix area. The Mesa Arts Center mission is to inspire people through engaging arts experiences that are diverse, accessible, and relevant.

  • Carnival of Illusion

Hang onto your hat, grab your partner, and jump into an evening of Old-World Magic. This top-rated up-close illusion show is "Revitalizing Magic" by blending an international travel theme with all the charms of a Vaudeville-inspired roadshow. Travel with the national recipients for "Excellence in Magic" and catch a lively slice of magical history! Carnival of Illusion is Magic, Mystery, and OOOH La La! Long a valley favorite, Carnival of Illusion is a must see for locals and visitors alike!

  • Arizona Broadway Theatre

Arizona's one-of-a-kind, award-winning, state-of-the-art, professional dinner theatre showcases locally and nationally acclaimed artists both onstage and behind the scenes. Full service dining, a full bar and Broadway-style shows are available eight times a week. ABT's luxurious auditorium comfortably accommodates 400 guests with unobstructed views from every seat. The theatre offers a number of performances year-round.

  • Ballet Arizona

An innovative and provocative professional ballet company that creates, performs, and teaches classical and contemporary ballet. The company is dedicated to preserving and celebrating classical dance while creating and commissioning new innovative works. Ballet Arizona is under the artistic direction of Ib Andersen, who was a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet for over a decade. Performances are held in downtown Phoenix at Symphony Hall and the Orpheum Theatre.

Tours and Sightseeing

While in Phoenix you can soak in the breathtaking panoramas when you take to the skies in a hot air balloon for a bird's-eye view of saguaros and surrounding desert. You can also stay a little more grounded if you're not as much of a risk taker and stick to the pavement or head off road, there's a Jeep, Hummer, ATV, or van adventure for you. You also have a great opportunity to check out one of the Seven Natural Wonders of the World and mark it off your bucket list with a day trip to Grand Canyon National Park. There are tours available through private companies that can take you to the park's South Rim.

Downtown Phoenix
Downtown Phoenix

Just Outside Phoenix

  • Sedona and Oak Creek Canyon

The cultural community of Sedona is a mecca for both art lovers and outdoor enthusiasts. Surrounded by the towering red sandstone cliffs of Oak Creek Canyon, Sedona's deep red-rock buttes provide a beautiful backdrop to boutiques and art galleries selling authentic Native American and Southwestern arts and crafts. Visit Tlaquepaque, a shopping village named after a small Mexican town that was once that country's leading producer of crafts and glassware. You can experience Sedona via Air, Winery or Off-Road tours.

  • Prescott, AZ

The first permanent capital of the Arizona Territory. While in Prescott, stop at the Sharlot Hall Museum complex. See the first territorial governor's mansion, the historic 1857 John C. Fremont House and the restored 100-year-old Bashford House. Another point of interest is the charming town square, home of the Yavapai County Courthouse. The blocks surrounding the town square are filled with antique shops, restaurants and hotels. But, the most famous section of the square is Whiskey Row, located on Montezuma Street. Whiskey Row got its nickname during the mining days when nothing but saloons occupied the street. Just a few miles outside the town is Granite Dells, a geological formation with two reservoirs: Watson Lake and Willow Lake. The area features distinct granite boulders and recreation such as boating and hiking. Prescott is approximately a two-hour drive from Phoenix.

  • Apache Trail

This world-famous trail was used by Apache Indians as a short-cut through the mountains. The trail twists through the back of the Superstition Mountains from Apache Junction to Roosevelt Lake and the town of Globe. The majority of the trail is unpaved but can be easily driven by most vehicles. The trail features volcanic debris, cliff-sided canyons, sparkling lakes, towering saguaro cacti and a vast array of wildflowers. The ghost town of Goldfield, the Old Western town of Tortilla Flat, the Boyce Thompson Arboretum, Tonto National Monument and Weavers Needle Lookout are a few interesting points along the trail. Other scenic stops include Lost Dutchman State Park (perhaps you can find the legendary lost gold mine) and Roosevelt Dam. The Apache Trail is a four-hour round trip from Phoenix.

  • Montezuma Castle National Monument

This impressive ancient Native American cliff dwelling is nestled high above Beaver Creek and is more than six centuries old. The Sinaguas, Pueblo Indians who moved into Greater Phoenix during the 12th century, built the dwelling from limestone and adobe. About seven miles northeast of the castle on the Park Service Road is Montezuma Well, a limestone sink hole with a natural spring used by Native Americans for irrigation. This is a three-hour round-trip.

BARBIE and associated trademarks and trade dress are owned by, and used under permission from Mattel. ©2018 Mattel. All rights reserved. THIS CONVENTION IS NOT SPONSORED BY, OR AFFILIATED WITH MATTEL.
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