Anniversary Festivities Include Old West Melodrama


Beer, Brats, Wine and Cheese at the Rim Country Museum kick off the ticketed events at the 125th Anniversary of Payson celebration.

"When I think about Payson's German heritage, I look to the 1880s and August Pieper," Tim Ehrhardt said.


Sheriff Elmer Wayne John (Wes Still) is disgusted as Opal (Sharon Collins) and Clarice (Gayle Barnes) discuss women's rights. The Zane Grey Murder Mystery Theatre will present an old West musical melodrama at 6 p.m. Friday, Oct. 5 at the Main Street Grille.

His research has led him to a brewery Pieper ran that apparently stood where Bootleg Alley is today.

"Just look at some of the early names that we had early on. Pieper, Bonacker, Hise -- these are names with Central European roots," he said.

Local German butcher, Charlie Adcock, owner of Charlie's Meats, is making the bratwurst.

The food and events manager for the 125th, Gary Bedsworth is making German potato salad and German-style sauerkraut.

Beer and Brats is an annual Northern Gila County Historical Society event.

"This will be more of a meal than in prior years," Ehrhardt said.

Each attendee will get a beer or wine glass with the 125th logo on it. There are some great raffle and auction items as well.

The exhibit hall at the museum will be open, but the reception is outside on the grass for a beer garden effect.

It takes place at 6 p.m., Wednesday, Oct. 2, tickets are $25 per person.


Do you want to work off the beer and brats or just enjoy the green?

Then the golf tournament on Friday morning might be your event.

Foursomes will scramble at the Payson Golf Course. Registration begins at 7:30 a.m. and the shotgun starts the game at 9 a.m.

"We are putting a 125th spin on some of the prizes... but we don't want to give away all our secrets," 125th chair Ginger Schoettinger said.

A hole-in-one on number five will earn that lucky golfer a $5,000 prize.

The entry fee is $80 per golfer ($60 with a PGC membership.)

Entry forms are available at the Payson Golf Course, The Payson Public Library, Chaparral Pines and Rim Golf Clubs or by calling (928) 472-9815.

Old West musical melodrama

Friday evening the 10 actors of the Zane Grey Murder Mystery Theatre will present a musical melodrama at The Main Street Grille.

Sheriff Elmer Wayne John (Wes Still) and Mayor Lovelady (Doc Holiday) ponder the question what happened to Zane Grey's Japanese chef.

Opal (Sharon Collins) and Clarice (Gayle Barnes) comfort Sally (Lannie Oszewski) at the loss of her love.

Zane Grey (Bill Still) gets used to the food of his new cook, Chef Moresalt (Zachary Horsley.)

All this, while Chief Madazhell (Jim West) takes bets on a railroad coming to town -- in fact, he takes any bet; Clementine Clump (Kay Schultz) campaigns for the Women's Temperance Union; and Ruby (Kathleen Kelly) stirs up gossip.

The play is full of song parodies, and plenty of chances for audience members to participate in the looniness.

It all starts at 6 p.m., Friday, Oct. 5. Dinner theater tickets are $75 per person and seating is limited to 100 guests.

Mayor's Breakfast

Town historian Jinx Pyle and current Mayor Bob Edwards invite the community to join them for breakfast Saturday morning before the Timeline Parade.

Past mayors have been invited to attend, Schoettinger said.

The location of the breakfast is the Main Street Grille. It is the old Journigan House and has been declared haunted by the Arizona Paranormal Investigators and the Missouri Ghost Hunters Society.

"Perhaps the ghost of one of the "passed" administrators could attend..." Schoettinger said.

Gather at the ghostly spot at 7:30 a.m., Saturday, Oct. 6. Tickets are $10 per person and seating is limited to 90 guests.

Mystery barbecue

The mystery of what happened to Zane Grey's cook moves to the band stand at Green Valley Park on Saturday evening.

The show, written and directed by Kathleen Kelly, will be reformulated for an outdoor audience. A cowboy barbecue is on the menu. Tickets are $8 per person if purchased in advance or $10 at the "door" and seating is limited to 200 guests.

Dutch Oven Sunday

Everyone can watch the Dutch Oven Cooking Demonstration at the Event Center, after the cowboys and cowgirls, their horses, the lil' mutton busters and exhibitors leave the arena.

If you want to savor the meal that will result from the olde-tyme cooking, you will need a ticket, which are available for $15 per person. Dinner will be served about 5:45 p.m., Sunday, Oct. 7 at the Event Center.

Where to get tickets

Event tickets are currently available at the Chamber of Commerce, Git A Rope, Bootleg Alley and online at

The 125th committee reports that some of the more popular events are selling so well that there is a chance they will run out of tickets.

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