In 1946, if you wound your way down Oak Creek Canyon to Sedona, you would find little else but a tavern building, a post office and a two-story wood building. The tavern was the center of the towns social life. It was the Oak Creek Tavern and it served as meeting place, pool hall, grocery store and saloon to the folks in the area and the tourists passing through.
Once inside, you’d find locals, cattle buyers, cowhands and workers from the Jerome Mine and the Clarkdale smelter playing pool, stopping for a cool one or buying food for the day. It was a friendly crowd, with a population fluctuating around 500 people, everybody knew everybody else.
As Sedona grew in size, the Oak Creek tavern remained a historic center of town. By the mid-1950’s, its wood- en walls had echoed the talk and laughter of many of Hollywood’s biggest movie stars. More than 50 movies were filmed in Sedona and when the days shooting was done, everyone would head to the Tavern. John Wayne, Ray Milland, Burt Lancaster, Jane Wyman, George Montgomery, Dick Powell, Agnes Moorehead, Burl Ives, Maureen O’Hara, Robert Mitchum, Hedy Lamarr, Glenn Ford, James Stewart, Rock Hudson, Donna Reed, Gene Autry, Joan Crawford, ~ to name a few ~ were known to enjoy the warm fire and spirits at the tavern.
The Tavern’s legendary status continued onto the 1960’s when, in 1965, world famous artist Joe Beeler sat at the corner table by the fireplace and with Charlie Dye, John Hampton and George Phippen, founded the Cowboy Artists of America. By their efforts, recognition of Western art has skyrocketed.
Today, the spirit of the Tavern lives on in the Cowboy Club ~ where the traditions and hospitality of the Old West are served along with delicious “high desert” cuisine.
We invite you to enjoy our unique blend of history and attention to quality so that you can take home a memorable experience of your own.