Students Put On Impressive Veterans Day Ceremony




The Color Guard is at attention while first- and second-graders sing patriotic songs in honor of the veterans.

Last week, the Pine Strawberry School had a special awards ceremony and a tribute to local veterans. Bobby Lombardi is a seventh-grader and a member of the Junior Civil Air Patrol. Part of the color guard, he arranged for and was part of the very impressive presentation of the colors.

The third- and fourth-graders brought invitations to the Senior Center inviting veterans to this event. Several accepted and were introduced and honored.

Charles and Christina Voakes, who returned from Iraq on June 1, made an appearance in uniform. Their son, Kobiee, is a PS school student. Kenneth Johnson and his wife, Charlotte, live in Indiana but have a son living here. Receiving the invitation at the Senior Center, they decided to attend the ceremony. Melvin Smith was led to the front of the group by his great granddaughter, Sara. He talked about his military career in the early 1940s. The school principal, Mr. Clark, and teacher Mr. Hood, are both veterans and received recognition.

Many students received awards for being on the principal's list, the honor roll and for perfect attendance. Their classmates cheered. The band played several pieces and their performance was very impressive.

Tellabration was a terrific success. Those who attended the dinner before the event had the opportunity to visit with the storytellers. On stage, their stories were varied and fascinating. Throughout the world, the Saturday night before Thanksgiving is the evening for Tellabration. Storytelling is a traditional way that family histories are passed from generation to generation. Dan Doyle, a storyteller himself, coordinates this event with assistance from many volunteers at the library. Children's programming at the library benefits from the proceeds of this event.

The Pine/Strawberry Arts and Crafts Guild Holiday Boutique will be this Saturday and Sunday, Nov. 25 and 26, from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. in the craft room at the Pine Community Center. Don't miss it.

Friday, Dec. 1, is the Community Christmas Party and Christmas Tree Auction for the Pine Strawberry School. Hopefully, all children in Pine and Strawberry, including home school children, will come for fun, refreshments, door prizes and Santa Claus. This is a family event. This year, as well as the decorated trees, Christmas cards designed by the children will be on display and for sale. Come show your support for our school and for the children in our community. The event begins at 5:30 p.m.

Pine Library Friends will not meet during November because of the Thanksgiving holiday. A Christmas party is planned for Monday, Dec. 4, at the home of Beverly Snidecor on Lou's Lane. Directions are available at the library. The festivities begin with a potluck lunch at noon. Please bring an unwrapped toy or game for the children at the Time-Out Shelter and a canned food item for the local food bank.

See the terrific remote control fire truck and buy your raffle tickets at the Pine Library. The drawing is Dec. 9 and all proceeds benefit the library.

Two benefits are planned by the Justice McNeeley Foundation for 2-year-old Mila Phillips who has been diagnosed with a brain tumor. Both are on Saturday, Dec. 9. The first is a trail ride in Strawberry with check-in at 9 a.m. at the west end of Fossil Creek Road. There will be prizes for the riders with the highest sponsorships. Entry fees are a minimum of $15 for adults and $10 for children. A Cowboy Christmas Dinner and Poetry Show will be at the Mogollon Steak House beginning at 4 p.m. on Saturday. The poetry reading will be followed by a silent auction and live music. For more information about these events, call Katie at (928) 476-2233.

Toys for Tots is still in need of unwrapped, new toys. Tonto Rim Search and Rescue is sponsoring the event but the collection boxes are at the Pine and Strawberry Fire Stations. While you are shopping for those children on your list, pick up a gift for one of these deserving kids.

This time of year, the food bank is in need of canned foods and nonperishable food items. Canned fruit is especially appreciated and needed. Be generous. Drop your food items off at the Pine and Strawberry fire stations.

All your holiday visitors will love to experience the wonderful shops and restaurants in Pine and Strawberry. Show them around proudly.

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

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