Payson Unified School District will observe a half-day in-service day Wednesday, Dec. 5. Julia Randall, Payson and Frontier Elementary Schools dismiss at 11:45 a.m. Lunch will be served to students before they depart. Rim Country Middle School dismisses at 12:30 p.m. without serving lunch. Payson High School dismisses at 12:05 p.m. without serving lunch.
Payson Center for Success School does not observe the half-day in-services and will operate on its regular schedule.
Santa's workshop, hay rides, boat parade
On Friday, Dec. 7, see Santa and his elves in their workshop from 5 to 7 p.m. at Green Valley Park.
That same evening, from 5 to 7 p.m., children of all ages can hitch a ride on a hay bale at Julia Randall Elementary School and take a ride down Main Street.
Enjoy Payson's first annual boat parade when as many as 20 decorated watercraft will light up the waters of Green Valley Lake.
Art and Antiques Walk
The Payson Main Street Merchants Guild and the Payson Regional Economic Development Corporation will host the First Friday on Main Street Art and Antiques Walk from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Dec. 7.
Art galleries, antique stores, restaurants and other businesses will remain open and offer free refreshments. On-street parking is available on the south side of Main Street.
Car club members are invited to display their cars along Main Street during this event. Vendors, street performers and local businesses are invited to participate at no charge.
For more information, please call Mike Stuart at (928) 595-0573 or Brenda Mooney at (602) 859-0507.
Senior Thrift Store sale
The Senior Thrift Store, 512 W. Main Street, is having a sale on men's and women's winter clothing. Blue-tagged clothing will be 50 percent off the marked price; yellow-tagged clothing is 25 percent off. Selected boutique items are on sale at $1 per garment. Linens also will be on sale.
The store will be open until 8 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7 for First Friday on Main Street activities. There will be refreshments, door prizes and a 10 percent discount on sales from $1 to $100 between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m.
All proceeds benefit the Senior Center and its programs for the elderly of the community.
Senior Circle sale
Payson Regional Health Outreach Facility and Senior Circle will hold a craft and bake sale from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Friday, Dec. 7 and Saturday, Dec. 8 at 215 N. Beeline Highway
There will be merchant discount vendors with their items and gift certificates, as well as crafts, jars with soup, cookies, dip mix, Christmas items, hand-knitted items and much, much more.
East Verde antiques, arts, crafts showcase
East Verde Park artists, antique dealers, photographers and crafters will host a showcase from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8 and from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9 at the clubhouse.
Local artwork will include scratchboard artwork by Angie Cockle, sculptures by Gail, oils by Peggy Gould and photography by Matalyn Gardner. Marguerite Young will have autographed copies of "The Insect Wonderland." Vendors include The Herb Stop and Finishing Touch Florist and Gifts.
Also available will be a large selection of antiques, quilts and pillows, handcrafted jewelry, bonsai trees, Christmas items, unique home decor and collectibles. Refreshments will be served and there will be door prizes and a raffle.
The East Verde Park Clubhouse is located five miles north of Payson on Highway 87. Turn left at the East Verde Estates Road sign and follow signs to the clubhouse.
For information, contact Maggie at (928) 472-4304 or Matalyn at (928) 474-8387
Tonto Basin tree lighting Saturday
The 10th Annual Tonto Basin Community Christmas Tree Lighting ceremony presented by the Pvt. Joe Hardt Det. #818 Marine Corps League is at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8 at Randall Park in Punkin Center.
Payson Choral Society Christmas concert
The Payson Choral Society presents its annual Christmas concert in two performances at 2:30 and 7:30 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 8 in the Payson High School Auditorium.
The cost is $8 adults, $3 students 12 to 18, 11 and under free. Tickets may be purchased in advance from Choral Society members, at the chamber, the Payson Roundup and at the library. Tickets will also be available at the door.
Lighting entries wanted
The Third Annual Holiday Lighting Contest is open to residents of Payson (within the city limits) and residents of Star Valley.
Noon, Dec. 12 is the deadline to submit contest applications to the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce, the Town of Payson, APS and the Payson Roundup who are sponsoring the contests.
Tour busses leave from Julia Randall Elementary school at 6 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 15. The last bus leaves at 8 p.m. The tour is free. Winners will be announced the week of Dec. 17.
Angel Trees ready
An Angel Tree is located at National Bank of Arizona, 804 S. Beeline Highway. There are also Angel Trees at Arizona State Credit Union and Wal-Mart.
Jazzy Holiday' Dec. 9
Pete Pancrazi, award-winning jazz guitarist and vocalist, will be returning to Payson to perform in a "Jazzy Holiday" celebration at the Community Presbyterian Church, 800 W. Main St. at 2 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 9.
Several professional musicians will join Pancrazi for an even more enjoyable afternoon of music. Steven Von Wald will join him on saxophone, Vic Kottner on bass, and local Gerry Reynolds will play drums.
The Payson Friends of Jazz and the church sponsor the event. There is a $5 donation at the door. For more information or to reserve seating, contact Gerry Reynolds at firstname.lastname@example.org, or leave a message at (480) 785-1278.
Handbags and more plus art on sale Dec. 10
Just in time for the holidays, Paula's Bags & More of Scottsdale will have a sale from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., Monday, Dec. 10 in the Payson Regional Medical Center lobby.
Come check out the wide variety of purses, men's and women's wallets, fanny packs, travel bags and various other items. There will also be a small selection of Art 2 Go pictures and prints available.
Purchases may be made by credit/debit cards, checks and cash. Proceeds go to support the many programs and scholarships offered by the Mogollon Health Alliance.
For more information, call (928) 472-2588.
Financial awards for women offered
Financial award applications are now available for both the Women's Opportunity Award and the Violet Richardson Award through the local Soroptimist club.
The WOA is available to any woman who is head of household and going to school to improve her skills in order to improve her lifestyle and that of her family. The money may be spent on whatever she needs: books, transportation, day care. Amounts of the award range from $1,000 to $3,000.
Call Jean at (928) 474-6167 for more information, or contact Student Services at Gila Community College for an application. Applications are due by Dec. 10.
The VRA award applications are available at the high school and are for a girl between the ages of 14 and 17 who is volunteering in her community and working to make a difference. This award will provide money to her favorite nonprofit organization. The awardee will also receive an amount of money.
Please call Tambra at (928) 978-2356 for more information.
Young author contest
The Payson Public Library is sponsoring young authors (age 12 and under) to enter the Baker and Taylor Young Authors Writing Contest.
Write an original story (500-750 words) based on their famous cat mascots, Baker and Taylor, and turn it in to the Payson Library by Dec. 21. Please stop by the library to pick up a flier or contact Harryette at (928) 474-9260 for more information. Winners will have their story published.
Humane Society open house Dec. 14
The Payson Humane Society will host a Christmas Open House from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday, Dec. 14. KRIM will be broadcasting live from the event.
Come by the shelter at 812 S. McLane Road and see the wonderful adoptable animals. There will be refreshments and shelter tours. An artist's concept of the new shelter and the latest information about the exciting project will be available. Gift cards for supplies would be appreciated. The shelter's 2008 PHS Pet Calendars will be on sale for $10.
For more information, call the shelter at (928) 474-5590, or visit the PHS Web site at www.paysonhumanesociety.com.
Santa Claus coming to Elks on Dec. 15
Santa is scheduled to arrive on Saturday, Dec. 15, at the Payson Elks Lodge, 1206 N. Beeline Highway (at Airport Road).
All area children aged 11 and under (must be accompanied by a parent) are invited to come. Doors will open at 1:30 p.m. and the party will last until 3 p.m.
There will be toys, raffles, and snacks and, of course, a gift from Santa for each child.
Tour the holiday lights and enjoy storytellers
Magic on the Mountain holiday festivities continues with a free bus tour of beautifully decorated homes of Payson, starting at Julia Randall Elementary. Busses leave at 6 p.m., 6:45 p.m., 7:30 p.m. and 8:15 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 15.
While you are waiting, storytellers will read holiday stories and there will be refreshments available in the JRE cafeteria.
Lioness to host annual holiday sale Dec. 15
Payson Lioness Club will hold a holiday sale featuring cookies, candy and pre-owned books from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday, Dec. 15 at St. Paul's Episcopal Church, 1000 N. Easy St.
New Life Foundation seminar set Dec. 16
The New Life Foundation is having a seminar, "Secrets the Whole World Should Hear" from 9 a.m. to 10:30 a.m., Sunday, Dec. 16.
The New Life Foundation is 5067 N. Highway 87, Strawberry.
Admission is a $3 donation. For more information call (928) 476-3224, visit the Web site www.anewlife.org or e-mail email@example.com.