KINGMAN, Ariz. — After a huge controversy showcased in Showtime series, Who is America? Kingman was named “Nicest Place in Arizona” by Reader’s Digest.
“Kingman got a black eye a few years ago when comic Sacha Baron Cohen’s television cameras captured a rowdy crowd of locals shouting down a proposed mosque. Kingman residents decried the intolerance—the city has had a mosque for thirty years, along with a well-established immigrant population—and locals stepped up their efforts to showcase the city’s best qualities.“Reader’s Digest
The city of Kingman showed everyone that they are not how the video made them out to be, and joined together and “adopted” a homeless poet to be their “grandfather.”
The homeless poet, Santa James a.k.a. James Zyla was discovered by residents for his talent and his kind spirit. They all joined together to make sure he had a place to stay.
“Santa James has become the symbol of the town’s best spirit. His story shows that Kingman is the kind of place that finds room for anybody who helps make it better, even if it’s just with a smile and a song.City PR specialist Coleen Haines
The mayor gave him a key to the city. It showed how we really go out of the way to help people.”
The city was nominated twice and will move on and be judged in the ‘Nicest Places in America‘ for Readers Digest.