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A Fan of Pokémon Go? Head to the Water Tower

Aerial view of Pokemon Go players at the water tower. Graphic includes iPhone app.

Pokémon Go is making a comeback with the latest update to the popular smartphone application. A legendary beast, known as Entei, can sometimes be found in the Salt River Pima-Maricopa Indian Community.

The water tower across from the Community Building has been the go-to place for Pokémon battles and to capture the legendary Pokémon.

This app has been a positive influence on the Community, getting Community members moving and outside with their family and friends. To play, simply download the free app to your smartphone or any tablet-like device with an Internet connection. Once it’s downloaded, open the app and roam around—the pocket monsters are known to randomly appear in any location. The idea is to catch the monsters with your device for experience points.

The water tower area is known as a Pokémon gym, the most popular one in the Community. A gym is a hotspot for the pocket monsters and where advanced Pokémon players can use their monsters to compete against each other. Taking the gym has been a constant battle between the games’ three teams: Valor, Instinct and the occasional Mystic. Players take the gym by battling the opposing teams’ Pokémon until none are left. The more team members with their Pokémon in the gym, the harder it is to take it down.

Community member Antonio Jim-Montoya talks about going to the water tower to play the game.

(L) David Prieto and Cody Achin check out the Pokemon at the water tower.
“I go there every week, like two to three times a week. I either place a Pokémon in the gym or I try to take it down every once in awhile … depending on how many [Pokémon] are in it,” he said.

When asked about whether playing Pokémon Go helps develop a healthier lifestyle, Jim-Montoya said, “I do a lot of walking in general, but this just adds onto it. [It] gives me a little side objective just to move around.”

Asked about his favorite memory at the water tower, he said, “Walking around and meeting random people. One day I found [my friends] Cody and Kyle sitting under the tower. The latest update, when they reset all the gyms, Cody and Kyle were already there,” he said.

Another Community member, David Prieto, is a big Pokémon player. “I came to this tower since it was a gym, and out of the darkness came this one little boy named Antonio, and he started battling the gym, too, with me. That’s probably my most memorable moment at this tower,” he said.

Pokémon Go Quick Tips
1. Always be aware of your surroundings.
2. Don't play while driving.
3. Do not play in restricted areas.
4. Have fun.