Author Archives: Tina

Our Sunset Magazine Mention

Sunset Magazine Logo Briar Patch Inn

We are delighted to share some exciting recent news; in the November issue of Sunset Magazine, our Inn was named as one of the West’s “37 Best Cabin Getaways.” It was such an honor to be included in such company as Silver City Mountain Resort in Sequoia National Park or The Resort at Paws Up in Montana. The recognition alone was exciting but it really put us over the moon when we learned that The Patch was the only Arizona locale selected for the article!

Sunset Magazine Chooses Briar Patch Inn as one of 37 best cabin getaways

We know that you have many places to choose from when selecting your vacation lodging, and we’d like to personally thank you for choosing the Briar Patch Inn. We appreciate your continued support.

 

Experience AZ Top 5 Finalist

vote for briar patch inn as arizona's number one bed and breakfast

Honored by our distinction with Ranking Arizona as the state’s #1 Bed and Breakfast, we were delighted to hear that another organization has recognized us.  Experience AZ, an online and in-print publication detailing the best places to eat, play, and stay in Arizona, recently announced that we’ve been selected as a Top Five Finalist for their Reader’s Choice Awards.  In the category of “Bed and Breakfast,” we are among the five favorite in the state.

If you would like to see us as #1, we would love to have your continued support.  Please follow these simple steps to give us your vote:

1. First, click on this link.

2. Next, type “Briar Patch Inn” into the window and select it from the drop down menu.

3. Then, submit your email address in the second window that pops up labeled: “Your email address”.

4. Last, click on the box that says: “Cast my Vote”

5. That’s it! You’ve voted!

vote briar patch inn as number one bed and breakfast in arizona

Heron cabin hospitality.

Voting will conclude the last day of September and winners announced October 1st.  We will update you when we find out the results of the contest.

If you’re in the sharing mood, you can also leave a review on Trip Advisor.  If you have any questions about how to vote or about anything else, please feel free to leave them as a comment below.

Another great year with Camp Soaring Eagle

For those of you who read our first newsletter, you know how much we’ve been anticipating the arrival of the families who participate in Camp Soaring Eagle.  And now another exciting gathering has come and gone and we couldn’t feel more grateful or blessed to be a small part of this wonderful organization.

We opened our entire property to children undergoing oncology treatment earlier this month in order to provide for them a memorable summer camp experience; we hosted a variety of activities including archery, Pink Jeep tours, painting, gymnastics, and more.

Please enjoy some of the photo highlights from their stay.

Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics Group helping children from Camp Soaring Eagle at the lower garden at Briar Patch Inn

  stretching for gymnastics with the arizona stingrays and camp soaring eagle in the briar patch lower garden

Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics Group Posing with children from Camp Soaring Eagle at the lower garden at Briar Patch Inn

A big thank you to Arizona Sunrays Gymnastics Center who came out and led the children in stretching, spinning, and tumbling.  So much fun!

preparing the totem pole of courage for camp soaring eagle with briar patch inn

Preparing the Totem Pole of Courage.

volunteer noreen having breakfast by the creek during camp soaring eagle

two volunteers from camp soaring eagle posing in the briar patch inn lower garden

family and children from camp soaring eagle standing in front of the office at the briar patch inn

Volunteers and families from Camp Soaring Eagle enjoying breakfast by the creek and posing in front of our office.

Innkeeper Rob Olson with daughters and volunteer from Camp Soaring Eagle

And our Manager Rob Olson with his daughters and Shasta, another dedicated volunteer from the Camp Soaring Eagle team.

Your Gracious Words

    Oak Creek Canyon Swimming Hole at Briar Patch Inn

This past month, we’ve enjoyed posting more pictures on Facebook, writing our first email newsletter, and updating our weekly blog.  Although our growing relationship with technology pales in comparison to our love of a quiet walk along Oak Creek, it is still online that we’ve best kept in touch with our past guests.

In recent weeks, we’ve heard you share about a June wedding by the creek; a honeymoon visit at Casa de Piedra; your love of our granola, and many other sweet anecdotes.  It is with great pride that we receive your thoughts and musings; providing a peaceful, comforting time to each of our guests has remained a top priority since we began Briar Patch thirty years ago.

Today we’d like to share with you some of our favorite thoughts from past guests.  We thank you again for your continued generosity and hope you’ll visit us again soon!

Facebook recommendations for briar patch inn

We love those steps down to the lower creek side.  Apparently, so do 202 of you!

recommendation by dianne kulp of the briar patch inn

Such kind words.  Thanks Dianne!

wedding posted to facebook on briar patch inn page

Hope you’re still living in newlywed bliss Carol and Steve!

wedding anniversary at briar patch inn celebrated on facebook

Happy Belated Anniversary! What wonderful memories!

Honey Bran Bundt Cake

honey bran bundt cake served at the briar patch inn and featured on the briar patch blog

Breakfast is something we take very seriously at the Patch.  Besides it being the most important meal of the day, it is also one of the best ways we get to know our guests as they join us in the office each morning for fresh orange juice, coffee, a bowl of granola, or a delicious egg quiche.  Over the years we have varied several of our recipes, dropping this or adding that.  But the recipe we care to share with you today is one of our oldest and most prized.

If you have read our book, The Life and Times of the Briar Patch Inn, then you are already familiar with our Honey Bran Bundt Cake.  With a dense crumb and slightly sweet taste, it is perfect spread with our fresh butter and jam.  It also stands on its own as an accompaniment to a light meal of fresh fruit and a soft-boiled egg.  From our sweet and spicy Jalapeno Corn Muffins to the savory Tomato Feta quiche, the recipes we share in this book are worth making again and again.  It is available for sale here.

Today meet the star of the show: Briar Patch Inn Honey Bundt Cake

Have you tried this recipe before?

Honey Bran Bundt Cake

  • 2 cups 2% milk

  • 3 cups bran

  • 2/3 cup canola oil

  • 1-1/3 cup brown sugar

  • 1/4 cup honey

  • 2 eggs, lightly beaten

  • 2 teaspoons vanilla

  • 2 cups flour

  • 2 teaspoons baking soda

  • 2 teaspoons baking powder

  • 1 cup raisins, optional

Blend oil and sugar, add eggs, anilla, milk and warmed honey. Mix dry ingredients together, add to egg mixture, blending well. Add raisins if you choose. Pour into lightly oiled bundt cake pan.

Bake 40-45 minutes at 350 degrees.

Remove from pan, tip upside down and let cool on rack.  When cool, sprinkle powdered sugar or drop a little lemon flavored icing over the top.

Our Oak Creek Winter

wintercollage1 at briar patch innThe sheep pen, creek side tables, and trees all dusted in snow.

Having our property nestled along Oak Creek Canyon certainly has its perks during the hot summer months.  Unlike the rest of Arizona, or even nearby        Sedona proper, our shady trees and close proximity to cool, creek water make for a much more pleasant and manageable summer temperature.

   Winter along Oak Creek is similar to summer in its contrast to the rest of Sedona; with a lower elevation than the rest of the town, it is fairly common to have a beautiful white winter at Briar Patch Inn.  Since our blog is new and you readers may be planning your holiday vacations early, we thought it would be fun to share with you a bit of what the Patch can look like in a colder season.       These pictures were all taken this past December 2012, when we had a truly white winter.

We hope you are enjoying your summer.  Please come and visit us soon!

wintercollage2 at briar patch innOur mascot Henry blending right in, a snowy pathway, and an angelic tree cloaked in snow.

 

children from camp soaring eagle sitting on a bench and eating popsicles at briar patch inn

Camp Soaring Eagle Returns

children from camp soaring eagle sitting on a bench and eating popsicles at briar patch inn

In the first week of August, we will once again open our doors to Camp Soaring Eagle, a non-profit dedicated to providing meaningful, fun-filled, medically supervised camp experiences to children living with serious illnesses.  This will be our fourth year of dedicating our entire property to this special cause.

Son and Mother from Camp Soaring Eagle painting totem pole of courage at briar patch inn

We host the Oncology Family Retreat, giving these children along with their families, a chance to experience a burden-free week away from hospitals.  Daytime activities include archery, golf, Pink Jeep tours, and nature and wildlife education from Out of Africa Wildlife Park.  Evenings are occupied with BINGO, magic shows, and yo-yo exhibitions.  We also enjoy partnering with Allie Ollie, a local women’s retail boutique who provides an evening of glamorous fashion makeovers to the children’s mothers.

totem poles of courage at briar patch inn lower garden created by camp soaring eagle children

We believe the highlight of the camp is when the children paint the totem pole of courage.  At the camp’s end, during our closing ceremony, we raise the pole of courage and recognize the tremendous strength that these kids possess in dealing with their life-threatening illnesses.  Each year these children leave their mark on the Briar Patch and in our hearts.

We will be closed to all but our Soaring Eagle campers from August 4-8th.  However, if you’ve booked a reservation shortly after, you will be one of the first to see our 2013 totem pole of courage.

This blog post is an excerpt from our first summer newsletter.  If interested in receiving these quarterly email updates, please send a quick note with your email address to tina4briarpatchinn@gmail.com to be added to the list.

We hope you had a happy 4th of July!

Five Scenic Reasons To Visit Sedona

Sedona is a wonderful place to vacation.  It has great restaurants, shopping, jeep tours, and more.  But by far, the single most compelling reason to visit is the beauty of Sedona’s natural landscape.    In case you’ve never been, here are five scenic reasons why Sedona should be your next travel destination…

panoramic view of red rocks featured on briar patch inn blog

Red Rock State Park

With over 286 acres of natural red rock, you won’t be short on sites to see.  There are hiking trails, guided hiking trails lit by moonlight, and a large variety of plant, animal, and bird life to observe.  Red Rock State Park is a site you literally can not miss; it’s the basic back drop for all of Sedona!

oak creek canyon rushing with red rocks in background featured on the briar patch inn blog

Oak Creek Canyon

This 12-mile long river gorge descends from Flagstaff all the way into Sedona where we happily nestle.  Often known as the Second Grand Canyon, it is known for its unparalleled beauty.  Great fishing too!

slide rock state park featured on briar patch inn blog

Slide Rock Park

If you have children, this naturally formed rock slide water park is the place to visit.  Several Olson children have made their way down these slides over the year.  Did you know it also contains one of Sedona’s only existing apple orchards?

coconino forest featured on briar patch inn blog

Coconino National Forest

This picture probably should have gone first because all of scenic spots are located here.  This website is a great resource on the forest’s camping and visiting hours.

Screen Shot 2013-06-20 at 6.52.01 PM

Wilson Mountain

For serious hikers, you might try climbing the top of Wilson Mountain, the highest peak in Sedona.  It’s a grueling 11-mile trip but the view at the top makes it well worth it!

 

 

Lyra: Another Season of Magical Music

We have two exciting announcements over here at the Patch; first, welcome to our Briar Patch Blog!  We thought it would be fun to update the site with some of our visitors stories and events that happen at our cozy bed and breakfast.  Now, we promise that Briar Patch is by no means going high-tech (no telephones or cable entering our cabins any time soon)! But for those of you who have loved Briar Patch for your 1 or 2 week stays in a year, we wanted to bring you a little something more.  With a beautiful photograph of the grounds, a funny story about Wooly and Bully, or a Briar Patch event, we hope that we can keep the magic of our special place in your hearts all year round.

image for lyra cd featured on the unprocess

Allen, Jo Ann, and Maryanne smiling at the camera at Briar Patch Inn

Allen and Maryanne with Briar Patch owner Jo Ann.

Secondly, we are pleased to announce that Lyra, our favorite classical strings duet, has returned to for another summer season.  Marking their 24th year with us, guitarist Maryanne Kremer-Ames and violinist Allen Ames will accompany breakfast by the creek side every Thursday through Sunday for the entire summer season.

In addition to performing at the Patch, Lyra has also performed throughout the state of Arizona, California, and New York.  They have recorded with several notables including the Phoenix Symphony Orchestra and Dave Brubeck, as well as their own personal recording which is available in each of our cabins for your listening pleasure (we especially like their rendition of The Beatles’ classic tune, “Blackbird”).  All four of their albums are also available in the office for purchase.

Our breakfast by the creek is from 8-10 every morning and Lyra will be performing from 8:15 to 10:15 Thursday through Sunday mornings.  For those of you who have an upcoming visit, breakfast is included in your stay.  Local guests or just passersby are also welcome to come for breakfast; please call the office in advance to make a reservation.

Maryanne and Allen Ames playing guitar at the Briar Patch

Allen and Maryanne creekside.