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Facing Arizona: Hidden beauty of Arizona hides in the outdoors

(Thomas Yoxall / Sure Shot Photography)

Editor’s note: Facing Arizona is a series that will appear on and social media  — follow KTAR News on Instagram and Facebook for updates — highlighting unique and everyday people across our state and give you a glimpse into their lives.

“Hi everyone, I am Samantha, and I am originally from a small town — Chatham, Ohio. Chatham has a population of about 2000 people, so moving here was quite a change.

My dad worked for a state steel mill, and when it closed, my parents decided to move here. He had been here once before and really enjoyed it.

Small towns are amazing, but there isn’t the opportunity that one would have here.

I have been here for 18 months now. I lived with my parents until I found a job and established myself. I live in the Tempe area now, which is convenient for work.

Arizona, in general, is different from Ohio — and the Phoenix area is day and night compared to Chatham. One of the largest adjustments for me was the volume of traffic.

I will say there is an abundance of things to do, especially outdoor activities. I have traveled and done more outdoors in the short time that I have been here than I did back home in Ohio because of the weather.

Year round, the weather is amazing. I have been able to hike, camp, four-wheel, and all this crazy stuff. Since I am an outdoors kind of gal, it’s been a perfect fit.

For me personally, that’s the hidden beauty of Arizona. I hear people talk about the heat in the summer and how it’s almost too much to bear. But if you drive for a couple hours north, you can explore in cooler weather.

There are so many different climates, types of terrain, things to witness, not to mention the winters. The winters here are amazing. It pretty much makes Arizona the perfect place for me to be right now at this point in my life.” — Samantha

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