As work on Payson's new rodeo arena at the south end of town nears completion, the man in charge of the project, rodeo relocation coordinator Barry Cardinael, says there are dozens of businesses and individuals that he will never forget for their contributions to the site.
And with the construction of a volunteer monument, he intends to make sure that Rim country residents never forget them either.
Crews dug the footings Wednesday for a stucco and steel monument that will bear the names of the people and businesses that helped make the Payson Multi-Event Center possible.
Early on in the rodeo relocation project, Cardinael developed an entitlement program that promised to place the names of major corporate sponsors and donors on a special plaque.
"I put that in there, knowing that in the end, it would be nice if we had something that would also honor all of the volunteers," he said.
Cardinael said he approached Town Engineer LaRon Garrett, the project supervisor, with his volunteer monument idea, and with Garrett's blessing, had designs drawn up and found a sponsor to cover the $2,500 material costs. Construction will be done by volunteers.
"Jerry Honeycutt happened to be up here for a rodeo committee meeting," Cardinael said. "I showed him the drawing, and he said his dad (Roy) might be willing to sponsor that."
Roy Honeycutt called Cardinael two days later, and said that Honeycutt Rodeo would pay for the volunteers' tribute, which will be built between the ticket booth and the first set of bleachers to the left.
The monument is "two posts with an oxbow hanging between them," Cardinael said, but the draft of the project -- drawn by Bob McClellan of Rim Rock Designs -- reveals something more elaborate.
The monument will be made of stucco with a dark brown steel roof, and will feature a custom-made oxbow and signs.
It will include the names of the volunteers and sponsors, plus plaques crafted by Homer Sanders of Sanders Custom Signs, listing a brief history of Payson, and the sport of rodeo in Payson.
Cardinael said he expects the monument to be completed by the end of March. Work on the arena is expected to be finished by May.