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Finding Truth in Sedona – Where Have All the Celebrities Gone

By Marv Lincoln

Located somewhere between Shangri-La and La-La-Land, Sedona, Arizona is a truly beautiful place. It is surrounded by stunning red rock formations and miles of malarkey. This year, as in years past, about four million tourists are expected to visit the area. Many of them will be on the lookout not only for gorgeous scenery but for beautiful people as well.

These days Sedona is more famous than ever, its natural beauty and quirkiness the subject of endless articles and TV features. One would think that a place as beautiful and famous as Sedona would be teeming with celebrities, right? That visitors can expect to rub shoulders with the rich, famous and infamous at local coffee shops and bistros? Wrong. Very wrong.

Sedona, Arizona, photo by Jack Sanders

Because of the presumed gullibility of the typical tourist, and some local tour guides’ quest for quick and easy sound bites (and bigger tips), a kind of local mythology has been created around a fantasy Sedona inhabited by A-list movie and TV stars, athletes and politicians. “That’s Madonna’s house over there,” says a lady Jeep tour driver with a straight face. “Sharon Stone lives on the next block. Al Pacino’s mansion is just down this street and to the left.”

The truth: A lady named Sharon Stone sells real estate in Sedona. So does a gentleman named Randy Moss (who never played tight end for the Raiders). At the moment, there are no celebrities living in Sedona. Actress Diane Lane keeps a second home in the city, population about 8,000. A certain Republican senator named John McCain sometimes stays at his ranch in Page Springs, about 10 miles from Sedona’s western outskirts.

And that’s it. Only a couple of celebrities lived here full-time in recent years — the beloved actor and song-and-dance man Donald O’Connor and actress Sean Young. O’Connor died in 2003 at the age of 78, and is buried in Forest Lawn Cemetery in Hollywood. Ms. Young, who has appeared in many films including “Blade Runner” and “No Way Out,” her two most famous roles, moved back to Los Angeles a few years ago.

Ann Miller, the raven-haired, leggy dancer whose tap-dancing skills won her stardom during the golden age of movie musicals, kept a second home in Sedona. She was often seen at local restaurants, although her main residence was in Beverly Hills. She died there in 2004.

Actor Nicolas Cage loves Sedona and often came here with his (now) ex-wife, Lisa Marie Presley, a few years ago. He wanted to have a home here and was even in escrow for a place in an exclusive subdivision near the town’s tiny airport. He dropped out of escrow, so the story goes, because he wanted to own the airspace above his home and it wasn’t for sale.

But because there is usually a high BSQ (B.S. Quotient) in tourist towns, not only to lure the tourists but to make them think they might bump into somebody famous while sipping a $5 cup of coffee at Starbucks, the nonsense continues unabated. It’s true that many famous folks pass through Sedona because they, like us ordinary humans, love looking at jaw-dropping scenery.

At the beautiful Enchantment Resort, employees must sign an agreement that they will never reveal the names of famous people who stay at this posh retreat (its Mii Amo Spa costs around $1,000 a day). So…don’t ask, and I won’t tell!

Actress Jane Russell used to live in Sedona and ran a nightclub called Dude’s. Orson Welles rented a house here for his wife and daughter and often visited, once had to be rescued during a major flood in the Seventies. Lucille Ball never lived in Sedona, nor did Walt Disney despite persistent rumors. Bob Dylan has passed through, and Johnny Depp, and Mike Tyson, and Muhammad Ali, and Regis Philbin, and Martha Stewart, and…and…

And, yes, Oprah! In the summer of ’06 she visited our local health food store during one of her cross-country tours, told a friend of mine, “There’s nowhere to eat in this town!” and bought a bunch of fresh organic vegetables.

And that’s the truth. If you really want to find truth in Sedona, take a hike. It has some of the best hiking trails on the planet. You might even meet me on a trail someday. I’ll be happy to give you an autograph.

About the Author

Learn more about beautiful Sedona, Arizona and its lively cultural, artistic and political scene at our blog. Also enjoy some unique insights on important issues of the day by Liberty and Marv Lincoln. Marv’s writings have been published in many national periodicals, including Newsweek and more. Visit for details.

Top Vacation Spots in America

By Aubrey Nichols

Whether it’s relaxing on the beach, staying at a quaint mountain cabin, or enjoying the big city, the country’s top vacation spots have something for everyone.


America’s quintessential vacation and honeymoon spot, the islands of Hawaii are home to some of the most beautiful beaches in the world. Balmy temperatures, crystal blue oceans, and white beaches make Hawaii a hotspot destination year round. Scuba diving, surfing, and snorkeling are popular activities while horseback riding, mountain biking, and ATV riding are popular in the lush, green mountains of the mainland. Many people opt to stay at one of Hawaii’s luxury resorts and enjoy first class relaxation. Enjoy a tropical destination without having to leave the country…technically; passports are not needed, currency is the U.S. dollar, and English is widely spoken.

New York City

The Big Apple is a culturally rich melting pot that offers a myriad of museums, art galleries, restaurants, shopping, and other enriching places of interest. Popular tourist attractions include the Statue of Liberty, Times Square, Ground Zero, Wall Street, Rockefeller Center, the Bronx Zoo, and Broadway, just to name a few. Most Americans think of Manhattan when they think of New York City, but in fact the city is made up of five different boroughs, Manhattan being only one of them. The rest include Staten Island, the Bronx, Queens, and Brooklyn.

Whether it’s shopping (Fifth Avenue), sports (the Yankees, the Mets, and the Giants), or theater (Broadway), New York City truly has something to offer for everyone and is as culturally diverse and rich as the city is populated.

Las Vegas

America’s number one playground, Las Vegas is non-stop fun and excitement 24 hours a day. Casinos and resorts all along the Las Vegas strip stay open constantly and parking and drinks are free.

Sin City is home to some of the most luxurious hotels in the country, such as the Wynn, the Bellagio, and the Four Seasons. Again, mild and warm temperatures make it a year-round destination (although summer temps tend to be scorching). Enjoy gambling, first-rate nightlife, and luxury shopping at this desert’s oasis.


Arizona is replete with Southwestern charm, mystique, and wonder. The beautiful and scenic desert landscapes attract visitors nationwide and the Grand Canyon is one of the world’s leading natural attractions, with nearly five million visitors from all over the world each year.
Arizona has one of the most scenic mountain landscapes in the country. Arizona bed & breakfast inns, cabin rentals, vacation homes, and mountain lodges are widely popular.

The Grand Canyon State is also becoming a relaxation destination with the growth of cities such as Scottsdale, offering luxury shopping, spas, and golf resorts year round.


Perhaps not the first place that comes to mind when one thinks of a vacation, but you may be surprised to learn that Utah is in fact one of America’s top vacation destinations. Think winter! Utah has some of the best snow in the world, let alone in the country. Ritzy ski towns such as Park City and Sundance attract winter enthusiasts from all over the world. The Sundance Film Festival, held every January in Park City, is one of the world’s premier film festivals and attracts celebrities and movie starts of all fame to the Beehive state. Cross-country skiing, snowmobiling, and snowboarding are also very popular winter sports in Utah.

And Salt Lake City is beginning to emerge as a gem of a city; since the 2002 Winter Olympics held were held there, the city is attracting tourists with its nightlife, cultural festivals and museums, rich economy and has one of the country’s top medical centers at the University of Utah.

About the Author