6/2/2008 9:51:00 PM Mint unveils Arizona state quarter
The Associated Press/Matt York
The new Arizona quarter, the 48th quarter of the 50 State Quarters Program, is on display Monday at the State Capitol in Phoenix.
Jason Soifer The Daily Courier
PRESCOTT VALLEY - It's our turn.
A decade after the U.S. Mint began its 50 State Quarters program, Arizonans will soon be able to walk around with an image of the Grand Canyon and saguaro in their pockets.
The minting run of the 48th state's personalized quarter is underway in Denver, according to Mike White, public affairs specialist with the U.S. Mint.
White said that more than 140 million people nationwide are collecting the state quarters as the Alaska and Hawaii coins hit the streets later this year.
It costs the mint nearly 10 cents to make each quarter, White said.
White said the first of about 500 million quarters are rolling off the Denver Mint's press and they should hit cash registers later this month.
People who can't wait that long can visit a couple of Wells Fargo branches in Prescott.
Marjorie Rice, vice president of regional banking communications for Wells Fargo, said people can visit the branches in the Frontier Village Center at 1831 E. Highway 69 and at 825 Miller Valley Road to buy the quarters individually or in rolls today.
Rice said the remaining banks will get the quarter rolls Thursday. Bank employees have a limited number of commemorative folios available today for free to people opening a child's savings account.
Michael and Sandra Wolf, owners of Ancient & U.S. Coins in Prescott, gave their 2 cents' on the new coin Monday afternoon.
The state coin should spike new interest in the quarters, Michael said.
"When they first started coming out, everybody wanted them and it has tapered off," he said. "In Arizona, this is going to spur interest in the Arizona Quarter."
Michael said a lot of parents and grandparents are collecting the state quarters for their children.
"I think part of it is they could get them at the beginning and also get them at face value at the bank or in circulation," she said.
Governor Janet Napolitano created the Arizona Quarter Commission in November 2005.
Commissioners got more than 4,200 quarter designs from 79 communities statewide, according to the governor's website.
The committee sent five of those proposals, in narrative form, to the mint, where mint artists interpreted and designed them.
Napolitano asked residents to vote online for their favorite and the coin minted Friday has the design that got 50 percent of the vote.