Fruity Fest A Huge Success

PINE-STRAWBERRY

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The Strawberry Festival is behind us once again. It is such a lot of work and so few people get involved and help out. It is too easy to say -- no more Strawberry Festivals, but then you see the visitors and the vendors having such a good time, enjoying our communities of Pine and Strawberry, spending money and planning to return.

Cheryl Holland was this year's chairwoman and she did a super job.

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Arvid Thompson shows Rachel Ralls, Molly Lund and Linda Lombardi how to build and play a violin as part of the Isabelle Hunt Memorial Library's summer reading program.

Once again, the Tonto Rim Search and Rescue did a superb job of controlling traffic and keeping us all safe.

Many thanks to everyone who stepped forward to help.

The bugs have never been worse. Having lived in the lake country of Minnesota, I thought nothing was as bad as those annoying mosquitoes. But these no-see-ums sneak up on you and leave large, itchy welts.

Get with the gospel

This is the weekend for the Southern Gospel Music Festival, sponsored by the First Baptist Church of Pine, the Strawberry Chapel and the Church on Randall Place. The Royalaires and 4Grace will be featured. At 7 p.m., Friday, June 17, there will be a concert at the Ponderosa Baptist Church in Payson. The concert at the Pine Community Center will be at 7 p.m., June 18. These talented musicians will provide all the music at the 10 a.m. service and a concert at 6 p.m. during the evening service, Sunday, June 18, at the First Baptist Church. The public is invited to attend these uplifting and joyful concerts.

Meetings, meetings, meetings

The Senior Citizens Affairs Foundation (SCAF) is sponsoring a potluck dinner from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., Saturday, June 18 in the Senior Dining Room at the Pine Community Center. Anyone 50 and older is invited to be part of this fun evening. Bring a dish to share and your own table service.

The PC Users Group will meet at 6:30 p.m., Tuesday, June 21 in the Senior Dining Room at the Pine Community Center. Harold Rush will show how to copy the music from your old records to your PC. Then you will be able to choose your favorite tunes from your record collection and make CDs.

The computer group reminds you that high-speed Internet service is now available in Pine. Strawberry will hopefully have it available soon. Call Larry at (928) 468-6605 for more information.

The Pine/Strawberry Wildland/Urban Interface Fuels Reduction Project is hosting an Open House from 10 a.m. to noon, Saturday, June 25 at the Pine Community Center. This project proposes a large landscape-scale fuels reduction encompassing 72,447 acres in the Pine-Strawberry area. Twenty million acres of public and private lands were scorched by fire from 2000 through 2004. Be sure to attend this vitally important and informative meeting. This project will make a big difference for all of us.

The organizers of these projects have worked very hard putting this all together for our safety. Show your support by attending this meeting.

United Blood Services will be having a blood drive from 12:30 p.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday, June 28 at the First Baptist Church in Pine. To schedule an appointment, call (928) 476-4212. Drop-ins are always welcome.

Homebaked goodies are most welcome and appreciated.

Your blood is needed all the year through. What better gift could you give?

Reading program wraps up

Dragons, Dreams and Daring Deeds, the summer reading program of the Pine library, will have its closing ceremony at 10 a.m., Wednesday, June 29 at the Pine Community Center. Award presentations and drawing begin promptly. A special presentation and a picnic lunch will follow. Everyone (parents, grandparents, sisters and brothers) is invited.

Pine Library Friends is having a book sale from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, July 2 at the library parking lot. Stop by for some great deals.

July Movie Madness at the Pine library begins at 10 a.m., Wednesday, July 6. Stop by the library for a list of the movies.

Jim Pipkin will perform his original American Story Songs at the Rimside Grill in Pine on Saturday evening, July 2. One of Jim's songs, "Dance in Coal Canyon," has been entered into the Arizona Folklore Preserve. His latest CD, "Time is Talking" is one of this year's nominees for the Americana Music Association's Best New Americana Album.

Arts and crafts

The Pine-Strawberry Arts and Craft Show is from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, July 2, and from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Sunday, July 3. This juried show has lots of great craft treasures of every medium.

Great food will be available, including the senior center's famous Navajo tacos, the Weenie Wagon and more. Bring all your friends for all the fun at the Pine Community Center.

The Kiwanis will serve its all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast beginning at 7 a.m. both days of the craft show. There will also be sausage, coffee and juice.

History lesson

A Cool History Lesson featuring the Pine Strawberry area will be presented by Mike Anderson, a local historian, at 2 p.m., Saturday, July 9 at the Pine Community Center. There will be an old-fashioned ice cream social hosted by the Pine Library Friends, a photo exhibit of Pine and Strawberry by Ed Toliver and old-time music by Trouble in Paradise.

This great event is sponsored by the Isabelle Hunt Memorial Library. Call (928) 476-3678 for more information. There is no charge for this event.

I will be writing this column from foreign lands these next few weeks. Please e-mail your information. I will not receive phone messages. Many thanks.

Please provide information for this column regarding upcoming events, activities and items of interest for residents and visitors of Pine and Strawberry. Call or fax (928) 476-2239 or e-mail cpwrather@earthlink.net.

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