Getting ready to move and starting a new job is hard enough. Getting evacuated because of the largest fire in Arizona history is hard too.
Dealing with all three at the same time would have been enough for most people to consider R&R in a padded room.
Michelle Beach, the new events and activities coordinator for the Payson Parks and Recreation Department, took it all in stride.
The week she was getting ready to move to Payson to start her new job, she was evacuated from Linden. Her house survived, but now she's not sure if she'll be able to sell it. She can't imagine anyone wanting to buy where all the trees have burned.
Before taking the job in Payson, Beach worked at Bison Ranch where she was the sales and catering manager. She has also served on the Payson tourism committee for about a year and has a degree in tourism and recreation management from Arizona State University.
Her job with parks and recreation will involve dealing with the aquatic program, special events, summer activities and senior trips.
Beach said she has already been getting lots of requests to start the senior trips again, so she has started working on those. She said the first will probably be in October because most of the places being requested are too hot any time before that.
Beach is also working on the Monsoon 5k walk/run, scheduled for August.
She said she had been looking for a different position and loved Payson, so she took the job.
She said she wanted to be here because the community is centrally located; her parents are in Linden and her sister is in the Valley and is close to fishing, which her boyfriend loves.
"I'm excited to be here and I'm looking forward to planning programs residents will enjoy," Beach said.
Name: Michelle Beach
Occupation: Events and Activities Coordinator
Employer: Town of Payson
Birthplace: Toledo, Ohio
Family: Sister in Chandler; parents in Linden
Personal motto: This too shall pass
Inspiration: My mother
Greatest feat: Surviving the Rodeo-Chediski Fire
My favorite hobby or leisure activity is ... Playing with my dogs, Cajun and Hagen, black labs
The three words that describe me best are ... Organized, ambitious and friendly
I don't want to brag but ... Payson Parks and Recreation is lucky to have me.
Luxury defined: Pampered at a spa and nice dinner selection of wines.
Dream vacation spot: Cabin on a personal lake with a boat and personal masseuse.
Why Payson? Centrally located and weather.