New Columnist No Stranger To Payson Residents


Having coach Dennis Pirch on board at the Payson Roundup as an outdoor columnist will be a huge treat for our readers.


Coach Dennis Pirch will be writing a weekly outdoors column in the Payson Roundup.

He's an avid hiker, angler, hunter and one of the most knowledgeable outdoorsman in Arizona.

When I first met coach Pirch about 20 years ago, a friend predicted one of the first things I'd probably learn about him is he could be turned loose alone in a wilderness with nary a survival tool, and flourish in an environment that would consume most of us.

Through the years of our friendship, I've come to understand more what that friend meant.

Coach Pirch's second home is the wilderness; he loves to be outdoors and likes nothing better than settling down on the banks of a bubbling Rim Country stream clutching his favorite fishing pole.

During his long and very successful teaching and coaching career, coach Pirch never had the time to pen an outdoor column or share his expertise with others.

Now that he is semi-retired from teaching and spending some of his time helping run The Tackle Box in Tonto Basin, coach Pirch has been convinced -- with much arm twisting -- to let our readers in on a few of his many outdoor secrets.

Each Friday, he'll write the column "Outdoors Under the Rim" for the sports section.

All who know coach Pirch realize he is a very modest man and reluctant to talk about any of his accomplishments.

Heck, he's been long eligible to enter the Arizona Coaches Association Hall of Fame, but shies away from filling out the paperwork.

Coach Pirch has agreed to put aside a bit of his modesty and share a few of his outdoor exploits in Outdoors Under the Rim.

As accomplished as an outdoorsman as coach Pirch is, we also know him as a fine Christian man who has helped mold the lives hundreds of teenagers, either as their teacher or coach.

Those former students and athletes undoubtedly will be among the readers anxious to pick up a few his tips for enjoying the great Arizona outdoors.

And what better name could there be for the author of a fishing column than "Pirch?"

Calling all Big Red fans

All Nebraska Cornhusker fans are invited to view on television the Cornhusker game, 4 p.m. Sept. 10 at Tiny's Family Restaurant, 600 E Highway 260. "Wear your best Go Big Red and come join the fun and excitement," event organizer Lynn Golliglee said.

Call Golliglee at (928) 474-6042 for more information.

Price changes for PHS sports

Admission prices for all volleyball and football games have been increased to $5 for adults and $4 for students. Last season, tickets were $4 and $3.

Although Payson High does not charge admission to soccer games, some East region schools will do so this year.

In addition to individual admission tickets, a variety of passes are available for purchase.

The options include a $120 family pass this will be accepted at all sports events this school year.

Payson High School athletic director Dave Bradley warns that the pass is valid only for immediate family members living in the same home.

"Not cousins, aunts and uncles," he said.

For $55, family passes to football, volleyball or basketball-only may be purchased. A boys and girls basketball family pass is available for $65.

According to Bradley, the $55 family passes are not being sold for wrestling because the Longhorns probably will not have enough home dual meets to justify the cost.

Student passes for all sports are $30 and individual adult passes are $42.

Bradley calls the passes a good deal for fans who plan on attending more than seven sporting events during the school year.

"That many games will pay for the pass, then they (games) are basically free," he said.

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