Teenager Amber Marshall is among those eagerly looking forward to the upcoming Gracie Haught Children's Memorial Fund benefits, which will include barrel racing, team roping and a host of family activities.
Marshal said she would ride her quarter horse Smoky in the jackpot barrel racing Aug. 10 in the Payson Event Center.
Barrel racing books open at 5:30 p.m. and cash-only entry fees are accepted. Racing is expected to begin about 7 p.m. The entry fee is $35 per run and $10 for the peewee 10-years-and-under event. The peewee runs will immediately precede the adult racing.
The format will be 4D, which means all competitors will be racing in divisions against other riders who have posted similar times.
For more information, call Charlene Hunt at (928) 474-5242, ext. 260.
The team-roping event kicks off at 8 a.m. Aug. 11 at the Payson Event Center. Gates open at 7 a.m.
In addition to the roping on Saturday, members of Gracie Lee's family will host several games and contests including a cakewalk, fishing booth and others.
"We'll have entertainment, fun and food," said Bobbie Jo Haught, Gracie's mother.
The highlight of the day could be the drawing for a 2007 Ford Ranger pickup. It will be held at the close of the roping events and ticket holders do not need to be present to win.
Tickets are $10 each or three for $25 and are available at Mogollon Health Alliance, the chamber of commerce or from Bobbie Jo Haught, by calling (928) 978-2397.
All proceeds from the barrel racing and roping will fund the Gracie Haught Memorial Children's Fund.
"We do a lot of things with the money to help kids," Bobbie Jo Haught said.
"One of our biggest projects is a safety week we sponsor at the elementary school and buy helmets for all the kids."
The fund also helps pay children's medical bills, purchase toddler and infant car seats and pay for CPR and first aid training.
"If it's anything associated with medical help and safety for children, we can usually help out," she said.
The children's fund was started about three years ago, following the accidental death of Gracie Lee, Bobbie Jo's daughter, who was then 3 years old.
Duran grateful for the support
Little League 10-11-year-old all-star team manager Eddie Duran has issued a huge thank you to those who supported the team during its quest for area, district and state honors.
Among those Duran praised were assistant coaches Craig McMullen and Brent Cannon and parent supporter, Debbie Vaughn.
Also, Reese Randall at Intermountain West helped purchase all-star uniforms and Maverik Quick Stop in Payson donated ice during the team's three weeks of trips to Show Low and Phoenix.
The all-stars won area and district titles to qualify for the state tournament. There, the team finished 2-2.
Duran called the campaign "a great year, one of the best in (Payson Little League) history."
The Arizona Game and Fish Department and the Gila County Sheriff's Roosevelt Lake Patrol will host a safe boating class 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Aug. 18 at the Roosevelt substation local at milepost 243 on SR 188. Topics include Arizona boating laws, equipment requirements, rules of the road, registration requirements, aids to navigation, trailering and anchoring.
Gila County Sheriff's Office Community Affairs Officer Lu DuBois is urging those interested to register early because last year's class was one of the largest held.
Many insurance companies offer discounts to boat owners who successfully complete the class, DuBois said. To register, call DuBois at (928) 467-2515. A donation of $5 per family is requested.