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St. Johns, Arizona

St. Johns, Arizona

Originally name El Vadito, or "little river crossing" by the original Spanish explorers, St. Johns was a thriving agricultural community in 1873. The community was renamed to San Juan (Spanish for St. John) when it was established in 1880.

Since its incorporation in 1946, St. Johns has seen significant changes. Two fossil-fueled electric generating plants, a data communications earth center, and a thriving tourist industry make up a significant portion of the town’s economy. As the Southern Apache County seat, St. Johns is also the center of government activities in this northeastern county that lies along the border of New Mexico.

St. Johns is a jumping off point for numerous prehistoric dwellings, petroglyph trails, and archeaological finds. The Petrified Forest, 43 miles northwest of St. Johns, is the largest forest of petrified wood from the Triassic time on earth. Nearby, the Painted Desert attracts thousands of visitors each year to marvel at the famous formations. Further north, day trips to the Apache, Navajo, and Hopi reservations draw visitors who wish to experience the "signature" southwestern scenery.

St. Johns is known as "The Town of Friendly Neighbors" and takes pride in the motto. With a population of 3,700 people, it is not at all uncommon for visitors to get a sense that local people know and care about others in the community. Friendly greetings are easy to happen upon.

Attractions and Upcoming Events

Things to do near St. Johns, AZ

Pintail Lake Wildlife Area

Pintail Lake is a waterfowl marsh habitat project borne of the spirit of cooperation with the Apache-Sitgreaves National Fore...

Gila County Historical Museum

Gila County Historical Museum was once used as a rescue station for the old Dominion Mine from 1914 until the 1960s. The muse...

The Snell House

The Snell House is one of the finest homes in the community. Built in 1911, the building stone is a locally quarried volcani...

Springerville Volcanic Field

1,158 square miles of volcanoes! The field containing 405 vents is the third largest of its type in the United States, about ...

Oddfellows Building

he Independent Order of Oddfellows Globe Lodge No. 6 was chartered in 1885. The brothers in good standing were the managers a...