When The Satanic Temple announced they would be having a “Satancon 2022” conference at the Saguaro Hotel in Scottsdale, Arizona this Lupercalia weekend, many detractors balked at the choice of location as sensationalist.
Some even suggested that the very idea of a Satanic conference in a place like Scottsdale is absurd because they don’t think there is anything Satanic about “The West’s most Western Town”.
As a long-time resident of the Phoenix Valley, I have to say that I find such notions utterly confusing. There are few things that Satanists have in common, but I think in broad strokes it is pretty safe to say that Satanists have an appreciation for art, design, attention to detail, weird historical places, and a keen sense of aesthetics.
Scottsdale has lots of that. So for those visiting the Valley of the Sun to attend the conference this February, here are some points of interest.
The Saguaro and the Valley Ho Hotels
The Valley Ho is NOT the hotel that TST’s conference is being held at. Obviously an organization like TST that is trying to establish a connection to a city that’s welcoming them with open arms is going to chose an historic hotel for the location of a conference. And that means either the Saguaro or The Valley Ho.
Why TST leadership chose the Saguaro isn’t something I bother myself with, it doesn’t particularly matter. But in the race to be the swanky post-modern destination hotel in Scottsdale for Satanists it has some clear advantages.
The hotel is smack in the middle of downtown and directly across the street from City Hall. Given the point TST has been generally trying to make this whole time that alone must have given it some bonus points.
The Valley Ho, is a point of interest regardless. You can do your own googling but it’s pretty great.
In 1957 it was where Natalie Wood and Robert Wagner had their wedding reception. Goths and other morbid history buffs can appreciate that considering how Natalie died. Besides just look at the place! You can say it’s expensive but you can’t say it’s not nice. Besides in this town we haven’t even seen too expensive yet because …
To any weird Qanon conspiracy weirdos who think Satanists run the fucking universe I have one thing to say: If that were true SatanCon would be happening at Taliesin West and they wouldn’t be advertising it.
Also throughout the Lupercalia season this year Taliesin West is sporting an exhibition of Dale Chihuly installations and there’s a daily guided tour. Gorgeous. Stunning. So if you’re coming early or staying late or just already live here but aren’t part of planning the event it’s worth a trip.
They’re also having regular “Sunsets and Sips Happy Hours” all winter. Tickets are $35 each.
Scottsdale Nites on Twitter
Not much to say there that isn’t pretty self-explanatory. Anyone who says Satanists are going to ruin Scottsdale’s good reputation by infecting it with smut and perversion can shut up.
Don’t be surprised. It’s “The West’s Most Western Town”. Do you know anything about Western towns?
Mining towns, railway towns, ranches. These places attracted booze and prostitutes. They helped tamp down labor riots. Then the place got gentrified when the bankers showed up.
Not to get too deep into the bloody history of the settlement of the American West, but for all its posh and polish, Scottsdale has always and will always have ways to accommodate people with certain tastes and a lot of money.
Be a prude if you want, rant about feminism or exploitation to your heart’s content, shake the hand of every luxury model escort and SugarBaby you meet and thank them for their service in solidarity with Sex-Workers rights if that’s your thing.
Just stop pretending Scottsdale is so prim and proper all the time for a change. It’s got a sexy side, and I think they should own it.
More to come …