Thank you for supporting the Operations of Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights. WE appreciate you!
From Our Castle to Yours, Have a Safe and Happy Holiday!
The Tovrea Carraro Society Team at Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights
Tovrea Carraro Society is saddened to announce the passing of one of the entrepreneurial Carraro Family, builders of the Jewel in the Sonoran Desert, Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights. Frank Carraro was born on September 23rd, 1937 to Leo and Lily Carraro, passing away on July 13th, 2021.
He was extremely proud of the Wedding Cake Castle located on 50th St and Van Buren in Phoenix, built by his visionary grandfather, Alessio Carraro and his father, Leo. Beginning in 1928, Alessio and Leo built the iconic Castle on 277 acres outside the city limits. Their dream was to open a boutique hotel and sell homesites to guests who had fallen in love with the Sonoran Desert and wanted to make Phoenix their home.
Many years later, Frank continued the Carraro legacy at the Castle, volunteering regularly after his retirement. His work on the Castle and the surrounding grounds gave him great pleasure.
Growing up in Phoenix, Arizona, Frank was the oldest of three siblings– brother, Leo, and sister, Marie. He graduated from St. Mary’s High School and answered the call to serve his country in the US Navy right after graduation. He was honorably discharged in 1965.
Frank worked for Sperry Flight Systems for many years and eventually started his own computer repair company. Not staying idle after retirement from that company, he started a mini storage company in Munds Park.
His favorite activities included participating in Jeep Jamborees, square dancing, camping, hunting and fishing. He participated in mission trips to Quito Ecuador, Guatemala, Russia, and Africa to build homes for those in need, at his own expense.
Using his Pilot’s license, he was a volunteer Sheriff for many years in Munds Park. He was such an integral part of that community, that the Pinewood Property Owner’s Association recently awarded a citizenship award to Frank for his involvement in their community.
Frank had many things to be proud of in life, but he was most proud of his family. He married his wife, Nancy, in 1964 and they had three daughters – Kim White (Randy), Christine (Gene) Head, and Michelle (Neville) Smith. Together they have 13 grandchildren and 2 great-grandchildren.
Frank’s legacy will live on in the lives of those who knew and loved him and now each time you see Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights you, too, can remember Frank Carraro!
Frank speaking at the Phoenix Mayor’s Castle Restoration Kick Off Luncheon, April 30, 2005
In honor of one of our brightest stars at Tovrea Carraro Society who was a Docent, Volunteer Trainer and Board Member, Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights will be dark tonight. Our shining star is heaven bound!
We love you, Linda Dee!
A glimpse at the beauty that Mother Nature and the 44 acre Carraro Cactus Gardens are unfolding this April of 2020. Thanks, TCS Volunteers: Don A, Tom C, Gayle B and Eileen M for these fantastic photos!
In the Spring of 2010, after years of restoration, due to the economic crisis and budget reductions, all plans to open Tovrea Castle at Carraro Heights to the public had to be put on hold.
That same year, a small group of community volunteers led by one very committed and tenacious individual, recognized the need to make this landmark available to the public and formed Tovrea Carraro Society, a non-profit 501(c)(3) corporation in September of 2010, granted 501(c)(3) non-profit status by the IRS in May of 2011.
The City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Board approved an Operating & Management Agreement with Tovrea Carraro Society to operate and manage the Castle on behalf of the City with first tours beginning in March 2012.
The Society is responsible for handling all aspects of the daily operation of the Castle and its Cactus Gardens including fundraising efforts, volunteer recruitment and training, scheduling and hosting public tours, special event bookings, promotional efforts and community outreach programs.
Current Volunteer Opportunities – Docents, Guest Services, Tram Drivers
Click Here to Download Volunteer Information Flier
Fill out an application and receive an invitation to the next Volunteer Information Session coming up in mid-August.