Getaway-Around Rim Country



Cal Mike King

Jazz pianist and vocalist performs

Jazz pianist and vocalist Mark DeCozio will be the featured artist at the Oct. 12 Payson Friends of Jazz program. The concert is at 2 p.m. at the Community Presbyterian Church, 800 W. Main St. in Payson.

DeCozio began studying guitar and piano at an early age when living in Hartford, Conn. He studied jazz after leaving high school, receiving instruction from guitarist Joe Federico and saxophonist Larry McKenna. He also studied formerly at the prestigious Hartt School of Music under the tutelage of Jackie Byrd and Jackie McLean.

He has performed extensively on the East Coast, from the Americana Hotel in Miami Beach to the Copa Cabana in New York City. He played in legendary guitarist Pat Martino’s band and composed music for the Pennsylvania Shakespeare Festival.

More recently in Phoenix, DeCozio has performed at the Phoenician Resort, as well as at various restaurants and events in the Valley.

His song list includes tunes made famous by Frank Sinatra, Michael Bublé, Billy Joel, Diana Krall, James Taylor, and popular Brazilian, Spanish, pop, as well as slow and fast jazz standards.

Joining DeCozio on upright bass will be Mike King, a member of an extremely select group of jazz musicians who work regularly with top instrumentalists and singers in Phoenix. Local jazz drummer Gerry Reynolds will complete the trio.

Proceeds after expenses will be given to the Piano Campaign Fund at the church. To ensure that there are enough seats, please let Gerry Reynolds know that you plan to attend by sending an e-mail to

New nonprofit needs preservation funds

Arizona Heritage Research Foundation (AHRF), a Payson-based nonprofit corporation, is celebrating the acquisition of the Anna Mae Deming Home. It needs the help of Rim Country residents to raise funds to keep the project going.

The goal is to preserve as many of the Heritage Homes in Payson as possible before they are lost in the name of progress.

An Autumn Dinner to raise money is planned for Friday, Oct. 10. By attending this event you will save the heritage and culture of Old Payson.

The Autumn Dinner is at the Mazatzal Casino. Doors open at 5:30 p.m., with dinner at 6 p.m. The cost: table for eight, $1,000 or $125 per person. All those donating $1,000 or more will receive a Limited Edition “Heritage Home” Centerpiece. There will also be auctions, raffles and door prizes with such things as Zane Grey memorabilia, a Sambo Haught framed poster, cowboy art, jewelry, Old Payson memorabilia and much more. Additionally, expect music, entertainment and fun.

For tickets or more information, call Jayne Peace-Pyle, (928) 474-0380 or Judy A. Baker, (928) 474-5422.

Payson Art League Fall Show

Payson Art League is organizing its Fall Show, which will be held Friday, Oct. 24 through Sunday, Oct. 26 at the Mazatzal Casino Events Center, on Highway 87 just south of Payson.

The juried fine art and fine craft show will feature 22 artists offering a variety of mediums. Your senses will be delighted with oil, acrylic, watercolor paintings, fiber art, bronze sculpture, scratchboard drawings, hand-crafted jewelry, weavings, stained-glass, and mixed media works. Each participating artist will be present to share their passion in the arts and share their stories.

The event is free from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday and Sunday, Oct. 25 and 26. Everyone is invited to the gala Friday night premiere from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., with $5 tickets available at the door.

An art raffle of one of each artist’s works, open to all attendees, will benefit Payson Art League’s art education projects in area schools and programs for children. The art league has purchased art supplies for the following: Payson Head Start, Julia Randall Elementary, Frontier Elementary, Payson Community Christian School, The Shelby School (Tonto Village), Wolf Impressions (Enrichment at Frontier Elementary), Payson Center for Success, Marcy Rogers and Payson Community Kids, Tonto Basin School and Whispering Hope Ranch.

For more information, contact event co-coordinator Glenda Roark at (928) 468-6965. And be sure to visit the art league’s Web site:


Use the comment form below to begin a discussion about this content.

Requires free registration

Posting comments requires a free account and verification.