Gila River Indian Community, Casa Grande, and Florence Professional Review and Guide
"The Gila River Indian Community tribal land lies south of metropolitan Phoenix and borders the cities of Phoenix, Mesa, Gilbert, Coolidge, Casa Grande, Avondale, and others. It covers nearly 400,000 acres. In addition to farming, the tribe operates casinos, owns a Native American-inspired resort, has built a thirty-six-hole golf course, and operates a new heritage center. Casa Grande was traditionally an agricultural and manufacturing town that has now expanded into the retail industry with two major shopping outlet centers.
Florence has two main claims to fame: its courthouse and the prison. The fifth oldest city in the state, it was established in 1866 by a local Native American agent, Levi Ruggles. The community grew rapidly and became the county seat when Pinal County was chartered in 1875. In spite of its desert setting, Florence is an agricultural community. Local crops include cotton, cattle, sugar beets, grain, and grapes. This drive takes you through a unique natural garden where virtually every type of Arizona desert flora is displayed. Depending upon your time and botanical interest, you can explore easily accessible side roads along the way."