Best Of Tucson®

Q&A with Uta Campbell

Uta Campbell, a docent at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, is a native of Bavaria (the largest state in Germany) and claims to do "as little as possible." Her warm personality and infectious laugh have made her well-known to weekend visitors during her eight years with the museum.

What's the best movie of all time?

That would be some revue that UFA (the German film company Universum Film Aktiengeselleschaft) put out sometime in the 1930s. That was in Berlin, in Babelsberg. They put out some terrific dance, song, upbeat stuff. Absolutely no plot! Mind-boggling stupidity. But the singing and the tap dancing, and the costumes and the music; it was fantastic.

What movie makes you think most of Tucson?

None. Nothing could even be remotely factual. I might as well watch Star Trek. Which I do!

Do you want me to leave that fact out of the newspaper, or put it in?

Put it in, put it in! Star Trek is in! Right? (laughs)

Who's your favorite movie personality?

Hmm. Maybe in America, it may have been Hitchcock. None of these newer people ... (they're) out to lunch.

What's your favorite movie snack?

Nothing. I wasn't raised that way. I basically don't eat anything after 6. But I can have ice cream anytime after noon, and if you can wait 'til noon, you cannot be considered an addict. But if you need it before 12, then you are an addict.

What's your favorite place in Tucson to catch a flick?

The Catalina! That's the cleanest. That's the one that you can 99 percent say you aren't gonna stick to the chair!

Best public art?

When I go to the Mission, I turn off and go past a park, and it's in the road! It's public art in the road! It's a fantastic Gila monster. It's just grandiose. I think all public art should look like something, and that looks like a Gila monster.

Best recreation area?

The (Arizona-Sonora Desert) Museum! My goodness! We're not partial here.

Best ice cream?

(To husband Bob:) What's the ice cream I eat? I am exclusive to that. Starbucks!

What flavor?

Coffee. How do you think I get my energy?

Best nightclub?

I haven't been to a nightclub. Actually, I have! Cover your ears; you are too young to hear that. I took a university course, and it was called Chicken Scratch dancing. I have been in every dive in Tucson you can imagine because of that. Chicken Scratch is a legitimate dance in the Southwest, and you can tell by how they dance it, actually, from what barrio they are coming.

Wow. Where's the best place to dance it?

I can't remember. It was always very dark, and I was told to go here, or here or here, and dutifully I went. I made an A, of course.