Stories for January 2009


Saturday, January 31

Former GCC board member not happy with charges

Doyle Coffey waved the $27 check from his wheelchair in protest. The man largely responsible for Gila Community College’s Payson campus as it exists today reminded the board of the time, money and energy he had expended on the college.

DPS crime lab unveils new DNA test process

The Arizona Department of Public Safety crime lab has always been on the forefront of new technologies. Back in the 1980s, the lab helped develop the original DNA testing technique and is now the second state to use a new DNA method that could solve countless cold cases.

Friday, January 30

Ugandan children’s choir presents free concert at Tonto Rim Christian Camp

A free concert by the internationally known Watoto Children’s Choir from Uganda will be presented at 7 p.m., Monday, Feb. 2 at Tonto Rim Christian Camp.

Initial success almost overwhelming

A decade ago, a unique fund-raising idea was proposed to then Library Friends of Payson President Judy Buettner.

Variety of careers makes it easy for new doctor to relate to Rim patients

When new patients meet and visit with Dr. Terence Rousseau, they most likely will find some life experience in common. He easily had half-a-dozen different careers before deciding to become a doctor 10 years ago.

A javelina head, a dog gone wild and a scattering of broken windows keeps sheriff’s deputies busy

Consider the odd adventures waiting for Gila County Sheriff’s deputies on an off-season Rim Country weekend — vanishing hunters, mystery motorists, smashed windows, mad dogs, missing javelina heads and the odd burglary.

Military tech schools are something you ought to see

A few weeks back, I happened to mention that I taught for the Air Force.

Housing market supply and demand

Economics 101 teaches that where there is an over-supply, prices will be driven down until supply and demand are in balance. The real estate market has been experiencing an over-supply for the past couple of years.

Defeating override might save some money in the short run, but at what cost?

Right now, I am in the eighth-grade, but I still know the value of education. Someday I will have a family to protect and provide for, I will have to pay for previous bailouts, and pay into Social Security to care for the last generation.

State’s budget woes shouldn’t be put on the backs of students, teachers and schools

Not in the George Orwell sense, but “Big Brother” will be watching intently the right-winged ideological legislature and our newly ascended (not elected) governor as they grapple with our state’s budget deficit.

People of Rim Country make Payson beautiful

I just wanted to tell you that your coverage is wonderful. My grandparents, mother, brother and daughter have lived or did live in Payson for many years, and I always love looking to see what is going on.

Wonderful Christmas gifts were a pleasant surprise

I am writing for my 10-year-old neighbor who had his name taken off the Christmas tree at National Bank for a Christmas gift.

State made bad decisions

The Arizona Legislature and former governor made big mistakes in balancing this year’s disastrous budget. The mistakes did not begin this month, but when lawmakers passed the budget last summer.

Around Rim Country

Free AARP tax help starts this Monday

Free tax assistance and electronic filing, provided by AARP volunteers in Payson and Pine from Feb. 2 through April 15, 2009.

Sleepy driver involved in head-on crash

A Phoenix man, who reportedly fell asleep at the wheel, crashed head-on into a car Thursday morning on Highway 87 near the Bashas’ Shopping Center.

Reward offered for missing ATV rider

The search is still on for a 51-year-old Forest Lakes man who has been missing for four weeks. A $5,000 reward is being offered for information on Mark Russell Irby.

Water fees spur council debate

What’s better — a law that doubles your water rates if you go over your limit or an administrative policy?

Hazard mitigation plan finished by Star Valley

It took a planning team nearly four months to catalog and organize three decades of disasters, but Star Valley has finally completed a draft of its multi-hazard mitigation plan.

Police calls increase in 2008

Last year tested the Payson Police Department which was forced to handle more calls while still being down three officers.

State budget crisis hits schools hard

Payson district will lose $336,000 this year, $2.5 million next school year

On Wednesday night, Payson Unified School District officials anticipated they could lose $277,600 from this year’s budget. By Thursday afternoon, that number had increased to nearly $336,000 as legislators continued budget negotiations.

Car rolls at Highway 87 and 260 intersection

A vehicle speeding down Highway 260 rolled at the intersection of Highway 87 when the driver lost control early Friday morning, authorities said.

Thursday, January 29

Bluegrass band performs tonight in Pine

If you don’t already have plans for tonight, head over to the First Baptist Church in Pine to hear the Pearce Family Bluegrass Band. They will be playing their special Christian bluegrass music beginning at 7 p.m. This lively event is co-sponsored by the Church on Randall Place, the First Baptist Church of Pine and Strawberry Chapel in the Pines. You can call any of the three church offices for more information.

First-ever Pet-A-Palooza a whopping success

Wow! What a success! The first annual Pet-A-Palooza was a fantastic time for everyone. There are so many people to thank, we don’t know where to start. But let’s give it a try.

Payson Physical Therapy expands services

If you have ever recovered from a sports injury, fall or car accident, you know that healing takes time and a lot of work.

Financial resolutions to make

If you’re like many people, you’ve made some New Year’s resolutions.

Deadline for antelope, elk hunt can sneak up on you

I was going through my list of “To Do Items” and found my antelope-elk booklet printed by the Arizona Game and Fish Department with two blank application envelopes. I realized that these needed to be at one of the regional offices by Feb. 10.

Mountain bike group to promote trail projects

The cause for building and maintaining more non-motorized recreational trails in the Rim Country will receive a much-needed boost Feb. 12 to 15 with the arrival of International Mountain Biking Association (IMBA) representatives.

Wrestlerettes donation was great gesture

What a fine gesture it was for the Longhorn wrestlerettes to donate the proceeds from their benefit spaghetti dinner to the family of Julia Wright.

Diamondback players coming to Rim Country Feb. 5

The appearance last spring of Arizona Diamondback players and broadcasters in Wilson Dome obviously tickled the audience of Rim Country Middle School students.

PHS senior nominated to McDonald’s elite squad

Christina Deaton one of only 1,000 players nationwide on team

Alonzo Mourning, Magic Johnson, Kevin Garnett, LeBron James, Christina Deaton and Carmelo Anthony.

Tease photo

Longhorns run over Cougars

A 78-40 victory over the Show Low Cougars has the Longhorns steaming toward their second successive East Region title and an advantageous berth into the postseason.

Party made it possible to see old friends

Sunday is the big game and I am ready.

Tonto Village proud of soldiers

Sgt. Marcel Jones, age 24, has done one tour of duty in Iraq, a mission in Laos, and has recently been redeployed for a second tour; this time in Afghanistan.

She used fossilized clams to break the glass ceiling

Carol Jones was a pioneer in the geological science department at Harvard grad school

When Carol Jones walked the halls of Harvard, it was a man’s world. You could count the number of women in the geological science department on one hand. Those who did attend might have smoke blown in their faces from a cigar-wielding graduate adviser.

Tease photo

Hashknife pays 51st annual tribute to scrawny, hard-riding orphans

The weather held as, for the 51st time, the Hashknife riders galloped through Payson on their rugged — but not quite epic — ride from Holbrook to Scottsdale.

Wednesday, January 28

Roberts, Patrick return to Payson jazz scene

Pianist and vocalist Judy Roberts — “Chicago’s favorite jazz woman” — and “jazz and blues sensation” vocalist Renee Patrick will once again be part of the Payson jazz scene when they present a concert at 2 p.m., Sunday, Feb. 8 at the Community Presbyterian Church, 800 W. Main St.

Party playbook for the big game

Food and football go hand in hand, and the Super Bowl is about far more than men drinking beer, grazing on chips and dip and screaming obscenities at the TV screen. Kickoffs, classic commercials, gridiron greatness and instant replays — the Super Bowl is upon us, which translates into one trying task for party planners everywhere — the ultimate game day gathering.

New Orleans

Let the good times roll for Mardi Gras 2009

The big New Orleans Mardi Gras bash happens Feb. 24 this year. We have all read so much about this city’s biggest party and witnessed on TV the parades and floats and people having fun with their wild costumes, great jazz music, and parties.

The Story of Payson, Arizona

Chapter 12: Politics burned brightly

After Globe had become the county seat for Payson voters, politicians began to look at the northern wing of the county with and an eye to the future. Two of those up and coming politicos were John W. Wentworth and George W. P. Hunt. Both of them would marry Rim Country girls.

Brain bleed causes stroke at young age

Pancreatic cancer’s average age of onset is 65. The risk of coming down with it increases with age. About 34,000 new cases of it occur yearly in the United States. It is the fourth leading cause of cancer deaths.

Take a cup of comfort

Folk group brings familiar favorites to Rim Country

The Wood’s Tea Company, an acoustic group that performs fiery Celtic tunes, bluegrass, sea shanties, and American folk songs with ease and skill brings its unique sound to the Rim Country with a performance Feb. 12.

First Friday features food, music, classic cars, art

Join the fun on Payson’s historic Main Street each first Friday of the month. Merchants up and down Main Street stay open from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. at this award-winning event.

Social Security questions and answers

If you have low income and few resources, you may be able to get SSI. However, if you are receiving support from your friend or from anyone else, that income will be considered when making a decision on your SSI eligibility and amount.

Elk, antelope applications due by Feb. 10

Elk and antelope hunting permit applications are due by Feb. 10.

Game and Fish Expo will be at Ben Avery

Mark your calendar for March 28-29 because the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Outdoor Expo at the Ben Avery Shooting Facility on Carefree Highway is expected to be even bigger and better this year..

Tuesday, January 27

Domestic violence calls stretch police staffing

Two domestic violence cases in the past week have illustrated the scheduling and cost juggle posed by the most statistically dangerous of police calls.

College likely to acquire buildings

Gila Community College will likely take ownership of its buildings soon, but the board tabled the measure Friday to ensure all liabilities are covered.

Responsibilities, limitations, duties outlined for school board members

How many board members does it take to screw in a light bulb? None.

Middle school gets room to breathe

The new construction smell circulated beneath high wooden rafters this week as staff at Rim Country Middle School stretched out in the spacious new structure that opened Tuesday.

Tips for beating the aches and pains of age

The aches and pains of old age now can be avoided, along with many illnesses, say medical experts.

Benefits found in caring for ill spouse

To give is better than to receive, a recent University of Michigan Psychological Science study has revealed, as older people who cared for an ailing spouse for at least 14 hours a week lived longer than others in the study who did not.

Business briefs

Darlene Pierman receives promotion at Edward Jones

Darlene Pierman has been promoted to senior branch office administrator at a Payson branch of the financial services firm, Edward Jones. Pierman has been with Jones for three-and-a-half years.

Home inspections a necessity when buying a home

Nearly 99 percent of Realtors will recommend to their buyers that they get a home inspection as part of the buyer’s due diligence in the home buying process.

Feature Teacher

Science instructor finds working with students wonderful

I have always enjoyed working with children.

Students discover the why of science projects

For curious students at Pine Strawberry School, the fair on Wednesday offered the chance to discover answers to elemental questions — for instance, why do teeth need brushing?

Black and White Ball a ringing success

The 2009 Black and White Ball was a ringing success. A sold-out crowd helped the Mogollon Health Alliance raise between $35,000 and $40,000, according to MHA executive director Judy Baker.

Family of Julia Christine Wright thanks com

The family of Julia Christine Wright wants to thank the entire town of Payson.

Thanks to all who helped during husband’s medical problems

On Nov. 14, 2008, my husband and I went into Banner Good Sam hospital for a three-day stay for stents in his heart. It turned into a week to get ready for a four-way bypass (cabbage), 15 days in ICU surgery where he developed pneumonia one week in lower ICU and two weeks in acute rehab.

Changes proposed to Payson Unified School District calendar

It is with dismay and frustration that we learned that the Payson Unified School District has once again adopted a family-disrupting calendar, with school beginning July 22 and ending May 22.

Legislature needs to renew rural subsidy for health care premiums

Historically, the Arizona State Retirement System (ASRS) through the state legislature has provided a subsidy to retired workers on Medicare and residing in the rural counties of Mohave, Gila, Navajo and Apache. The ASRS Health Insurance Program provides two levels of coverage, Medicare Complete and Senior Supplement.

Soft hearts in hard times

Hard times. Soft hearts

Around Rim Country

Hear about how state budget cuts will impact schools

Payson Unified School District Superintendent Casey O’Brien will have two public meetings Wednesday to discuss the potential impact of the proposed state budget cuts to K-12 education in Payson.

Evans: ‘We have stopped the bleeding’

Mayor offers serious, often surprising overview of the state of the town before citizens group

“We’ve stopped the bleeding,” Payson Mayor Kenny Evans said of the town’s finances before a polite and attentive Citizens Awareness Committee audience.

Brooke agrees to water sale talk

Brooke Utilities President Bob Hardcastle on Friday signed a joint agreement to begin settlement talks for the purchase of the Pine and Strawberry water companies by the Pine-Strawberry Water Improvement District.

Main Street condos clear final hurdle

Chilson Ranch ready to send bulldozers into the American Gulch to start grading drainage and streets for a 158-unit luxury condo project

After a three-month detour down a flood-prone wash, the 158-unit Chilson Ranch condo project off Main Street could unleash the bulldozers within about two weeks, says developer Hallie Jackman.

Wrestlerettes give proceeds from benefit to family of student who died

In one the more gripping gestures to occur in high school sports, the Payson High School wrestlerettes donated proceeds from a benefit dinner to the family of a 17-year former classmate and spirit line member killed a week ago.

A plea to the new president

Tell us it isn’t true, Mr. President.

Longhorns finish third at annual memorial tourney

Queen Creek takes the title, Gilbert Highland second

For the third successive year, the Longhorn wrestling team grappled its way to a third place finish in the Tim Van Horn Memorial Tournament.

Tease photo

Longhorn senior earns top individual wrestling honor

Call Bryan Burke’s cell phone and you’ll hear his personalized greeting, “If you can dream it, you can do it.”

Lobos upset Horns

Longhorns lose first East game in two seasons to Snowflake

Some of the Payson Longhorns might have forgotten the agony of an East region defeat.

Saturday, January 24

Overgrowth of ponderosa pines endangers Arizona watersheds, forests

Ponderosa pine forests have been allowed to grow so dense that they are primed to spawn immense wildfires that threaten not just trees and wildlife but watersheds, a Northern Arizona University forestry expert said Tuesday.

SV residents upset over proposed dog boarding

Controversial plans to open a dog boarding business in Star Valley were shelved Tuesday night by the town council, who decided to send the issue back to the planning and zoning commission for further review.

Valentine’s Day dinner, dance at casino will benefit humane society

The Payson Humane Society is holding a gala “Evening in Paris” dinner and dance at 6 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 14 at Mazatzal Casino.

Mayor: Star Valley made tough decisions in 2008

In the words of Star Valley’s Mayor Chuck Heron, it has been an eventful year for the budding town. The council was forced to make tough decisions, including dropping plans to buy a portion of Brooke Utilities, combining the town manager and attorney positions and scratching plans to build a permanent town hall. But at the end of the year, the council could proudly report they were ahead in their finances.

Friday, January 23

Neighborhood chops away at fire risk

Payson Pines becomes the latest Rim community to qualify as ‘firewise’ subdivision

Payson Pines this week became the latest Rim Country community to clean up to avoid burning down.

Time to get your 2009 fishing license

Now that we are in mid-January, if you haven’t already, it’s time to renew that fishing license for the 2009 year. Springtime is still a couple of months away, but Arizona has many lakes that will produce bass, crappies and trout in the winter months.

Wrestlers host Van Horn tourney

Coolidge’s Anthony Garcia won the 2008 Tim Van Horn Memorial Trophy for his pin of 5A defending state champ Ryan Miller of Tempe Corona del Sol.

Cardinals coaches face former team

I won’t even pretend to know what makes professional football coaches tick. But it must be an emotional roller coaster for Arizona Cardinals coaches Ken Whisenhunt and Russ Grimm to be playing their former team, the Pittsburgh Steelers in the Super Bowl.

Longhorns remain unbeaten in the East

Doubts no longer linger about which 3A East team is the region’s finest.

Lady Longhorns take sole possession of East Region

The Payson Lady Longhorns have taken over sole possession of first place in the 3A East Region with a come-from-behind 52-45 victory over the Alchesay Falcons.

Big bass tourney coming to Roosevelt

The world’s leading tournament fishing organization is coming to Payson.

Elk herd cause of Hwy. 87 crash that took out power pole

After authorities learned that the driver of a tractor-trailer that overturned and took out a power pole on Highway 87 was trying to avoid a herd of elk, they decided not to ticket him.

Woman pulled from fiery crash on Hwy. 260

Thanks to the bravery of several witnesses, a Show Low couple is recovering from only minor scrapes and bruises after being pulled from their burning truck last week on Highway 260.

Comeback fish returns to Fossil Creek

State hopes to create blue-ribbon fishery in a restored Fossil Creek for the threatened Verde trout

The Verde trout have finally got a stream to call their own — the resurrected Fossil Creek. And that makes perfect sense.

Charlie’s Meats is not closing

There has been a rumor going around that Charlie’s Meats is going out of business and I am going to work for Bashas’. This rumor is not true.

School district blessed with professional staff at all levels

On behalf of Julia Randall Elementary, we thank the Roundup for the gracious words from your article on Jan. 16.

I’ll never forget the words spoken by a police officer

A few weeks back I mentioned a New Jersey “anti-blizzard,” but I only told part of the story.

Terrible budget choices confront state lawmakers

The state legislature and newly seated Gov. Jan Brewer face mounting budget deficits, which will inevitably shrink the operations of state government.

Around Rim Country

Hashknife party slated for tonight

The annual Chamber Mixer for the Hashknife Pony Express riders is from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., Friday, Jan. 23 at the Buffalo Bar & Grill, at the corner of E. Bonita Street and Beeline. The fee is $3 for chamber members and $5 for nonmembers.

Schools fear impact of state budget cuts

Local educators say that a tentative plan to slash $900 million, and possibly all-day kindergarten, from the state’s education budget to balance the budget would devastate local schools.

DPS officers protect Obama

Jimmy Oestmann and Lt. Jamie Escobedo among 50 Arizona officers called to Washington

A pair of Payson law enforcement officers were among the U.S. Marshals carefully monitoring the 2 million enthusiastic spectators who greeted President Barack Obama along his inauguration parade route.

Granny flats get go-ahead

It’s official. You can rent that upstairs bedroom. Even convert your garage for Grandma.

Tease photo

ATV accident claims life of PHS student

Second teen injured, while a third girl escapes unhurt

A Payson High School junior died and another teen was injured while riding on an ATV east of Beaver Valley on Monday night, authorities said.

Senseless breeding results in many homeless puppies

Sitting here in my warm and comfortable home, surrounded by my warm and comfortable animals, my mind can’t help but turn to the animals at Payson Humane Society.

What first-wave boomers should know

If you’re a senior member of the baby boom generation, generally defined as those born between 1946 and 1964, you’ve seen a lot in your life: the Cold War, the first moon landing and the birth of the Internet.

Colorz stylists loves working with clients again

They say a hairstylist is like a best friend, therapist and cosmetologist all rolled into one.

Quilter’s Outpost staying open

By a stitch of good luck, Quilter’s Outpost has decided to stay open after eight years of business.

Super Bowl a win-win for columnist

Are you ready for the Super Bowl? We watched the Arizona game and the Pittsburgh game and we yelled loud enough for them to hear us in Phoenix. You can’t say they were not exciting games.

Privileged to witness historic week

What an historic week this has been for the sports world and Arizona, and for our country with the inauguration of our new president. I am so grateful that I could see history in the making.

Area controlled burns in full force

The controlled burns have been in full force around our communities for the past few weeks. I, for one, am grateful!

Ruins hint at the benefits of catastrophe

Wupatki ruins north of Flagstaff bear witness to the paradoxical blessings the region reaped from

The earth trembled. The rock smoldered. The forest burned. And the holy man danced, his turquoise and coral beads bouncing on the chest of his finely woven tunic. The low wall of glowing lava rolled inexorably toward him at a slow walk, swallowing everything in its path with a gulp of flame and smoke.

Thursday, January 22

Tease photo

Payson High School junior dies in ATV accident

A Payson High School teen died and another teen was injured while riding on an ATV east of Beaver Valley on Monday night, authorities said.

Wednesday, January 21

Hit the slopes this winter

It’s that time again to pack up the skis, heavy winter clothing and take to the hills and mountains in America’s West. There are many great winter skiing runs, lifts and lodges sprinkled throughout the area with new resorts and improved facilities.

Singing Flutist

Conductor plays voices like an instrument

Daria Mason began her first professional life as a flutist who sang.

A sampling of brands from 1908

One of the neat items available online through the Arizona Memory Project is a brand book from 1908. This book has brands from all around the state and covers brands recorded from April 28, 1897 to July 13, 1908. Here’s a look back at some of those brands and a brief look at the people who had them.

Peripheral artery disease common in older ages

A commercial I saw on TV had a grandparent and grandchild talking about peripheral artery disease. It got me wondering if I have it. I got the idea that many older people do. I am 78. What are its signs?

Pony Express

Honor the riders of this Old West tradition

The adventurous, romantic spirit of the Old West will come alive this week and next as the Navajo County Hashknife Sheriff’s Posse once again re-enacts its version of the Pony Express rides.

Pet-a-Palooza to benefit Payson Humane Society

A new benefit for the Payson Humane Society, Payson Pet-A-Palooza pet fair and adopt-a-thon will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 24 at the Payson Safeway.

Junior thespians offer four stories

The Payson High School Junior Thespians will present four stories this Friday and Saturday evening at the high school’s studio theatre.

Anglers are getting an 11-mile river fishing bonus

Arizona anglers are being blessed with an 11-mile trout fishing bonus along the Lower Salt River bordering the Valley of the Sun starting Jan. 22 thanks to plentiful December precipitation and unusual winter runoff in central Arizona that has almost filled the Salt River reservoirs.

Bashas’ event raises 900 pounds of food for Payson food bank

It was only a two-hour event, but it raised 900 pounds of groceries for the St. Vincent de Paul Food Bank. On Jan. 4, Bashas’ donated 10 percent of sales between 2 p.m. and 4 p.m. to the food bank. Store director Bob MyKleby said 10 percent of sales in two hours equated to around two full pickups of food.

Tuesday, January 20

Fire’s cause disputed

A Jan. 7 fire that destroyed a two-story home east of town may have been caused by an electrical or cigarette spark.

Arizona near bankruptcy

Last week, the Central Arizona Board of Realtors had Arizona State Treasurer Dean Martin as the guest speaker. As he explained, the treasurer’s office serves as the state’s bank, thereby, collecting of revenues and disbursing payments.

Still serving Rim Country after 26 years

Mesa Insulation has proudly served Rim Country for more than two decades. Albeit an itchy calling for the workers, branch manager Tom Johns said providing a quality product to the community has always made up for the hours of scratching.

Senior Circle honors volunteers

It’s always a bonus when couples are able to volunteer together.

Favorite, familiar brands are going by the wayside

We sure do take our conveniences for granted, don’t we?

Financial planning for college program offered Jan. 22

College-bound Payson High School students and their parents are invited to attend a “Making College Financial Planning Count” one-hour program on Thursday, Jan. 22 at 7 p.m. in the high school’s auditorium.

Good news and hard times in Payson district

There are some good things to share about PUSD this week. Our Credit for Kids campaign was very successful. We took in just shy of $262,000. I wish to thank all of Payson for your generous support.

Interesting stories about area needed

The fourth-graders at Pine Strawberry School think that the Payson Roundup should publish interesting articles about places in the area. Like the Rim, it is beautiful.

Church thanks donors

Crossroads Foursquare Gospel Church held its annual Christmas celebration dinner, “The Reason for the Season the Birth of Jesus Christ,” Sunday evening, Dec. 14 at Tiny’s.

Propane awareness and safety important

Recently the Payson Fire Department responded to a home explosion due to the collection of propane gas. This and other similar calls for service experienced by the department in the past several months have prompted my writing this article.

Study shows loggers may save the forest

After a decade of muddle and confusion, the way suddenly seems clear to protect forest communities by restoring forest health.

Around Rim Country

Pet-a-Palooza to help homeless pets

A new benefit for the Payson Humane Society, Payson Pet-A-Palooza pet fair and adopt-a-thon will be held from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Jan. 24 at the Payson Safeway.

Summer festivals get boost from town hall

Ronald Reagan loved to tell the story about the optimistic fellow who broke into a wide grin upon opening the door to discover a small room filled nearly to the ceiling with horse droppings.

Hashknife riders coming

The Rim Country has several opportunities to welcome the return of the Hashknife Pony Express riders to the community.

College wants to own its buildings

Gila Community College board members will likely discuss taking ownership of the college’s buildings during a meeting Friday morning, officials said last week.

Counties push for logging plan to restore forest

An “unprecedented” plan to reinvent the timber industry and thereby thin millions of acres of dangerously thick forests in Northern Arizona won approval Thursday by the Arizona Board of Supervisors Association.

Tom Garrett’s blog talks about Obama as president

Payson Roundup blogger/columnist Tom Garrett comments on the election of Barack Obama as president of the United States.

Interest sought for community garden

Anyone interested in forming a Rim Country community garden is asked to contact JoAnne Roethlein at (928) 474-3766 or John Roethlein at (928) 472-2249 between 8 a.m. and 8 p.m.

Search for missing man scaled back

After two weeks of exhaustive searching for a missing architect in the Forest Lakes area, searchers have scaled back their efforts, authorities said.

Police recognized for night out event

When the Payson Police Department decided to participate in the National Night Out event for the first time Aug. 2, they didn’t know if any residents would show up, much less that they would win an award for their outstanding participation.

Star Valley Town Council to vote on dog boarding permit

The Star Valley Town Council could vote to approve a dog boarding business Tuesday night, something neighbors and the Planning and Zoning Commission say they do not want to see.

Cardinals pull off big surprise

They aren’t who we thought they were. Actually, the Arizona Cardinals were much better than we believed, as evidenced by the hard-earned Super Bowl ticket they are clutching.

Horns will benefit from spaghetti dinners

Longhorn wrestling team-hosted benefit spaghetti dinners have long been a much-anticipated highlight on the Rim Country social and sports scene. This year, they will take on a new aura.

Lady Longhorns on six-game win streak

Falcons will try to derail high-flying Payson High team

The 1952 western film “High Noon,” tells the story of longtime Marshal Will Kane — played by Gary Cooper — taking to the Hadleyville, New Mexico dirt streets to square off against a band of rivals.

Rim runners take part in marathon

Carolyn Fruth, a 44-year-old mother of two, led the Rim Country charge at P.F. Chang’s Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon.

Tease photo

Alchesay will challenge Longhorns

Payson seeks to keep record unblemished in East play

Keeping its region record unblemished will be the goal of the Longhorn boys basketball team when the squad plays host tonight, Jan. 20, to the Alchesay Falcons.

Saturday, January 17

‘Dump the Drugs’ program aims to curb prescription abuse

The Community Prevention Council is hosting a community event to help curb illegal drug abuse by properly helping people dispose of unwanted prescriptions.

Drug-related visits to the emergency room

With the growing use and abuse of drugs and alcohol, it is not surprising there are also growing statistics in emergency room visits by those using and abusing.

Fifth-grade student aces AIMS test

Julia Randall fifth-grader Jewel Johnson does not seem overly concerned with perfection. However, Jewel scored perfectly on the math and reading sections of last year’s state standardized test, Arizona’s Instrument to Measure Standards.

Active parent, teacher group raises money for equipment, provides support for programs

To convince others to volunteer, you must volunteer. Such is the philosophy of Susi Carr, the president of Julia Randall’s Parent Teacher Organization.

Man gets parole for aggravated assault

A 24-year-old Payson-area man was sentenced Monday for assaulting a man with a 9mm handgun on the morning of Sept. 8, 2007.

Stargazing at Tonto National Monument

Tonto National Monument, in cooperation with the Tonto Basin Ranger District, is sponsoring a professionally presented astronomy program. Tony and Carole La Conte are professional stargazers with over 50 years of experience viewing the night sky.

Free workshop for private well owners offered

The University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Yavapai County, will be offering a Private Well Owner’s Workshop on Feb. 2, from 6-9 p.m. in the Yavapai County Board of Supervisors Boardroom located on 1015 Fair St. in Prescott.

Friday, January 16

Award-winning fitness class helps students develop good habits

Julia Randall’s gym teacher, Donna Moore, seeks to instill fitness habits in her students, even among those without athletic predispositions.

A chance meeting, a chance visit to Payson, brought Rob Varner to Julia Randall

The weight of occasional trouble has chiseled Rob Varner’s leadership skills, and have helped him lead Julia Randall Elementary School to excellence.

Tease photo

A community of learners

It was a beginning begat by disappointment — and then Julia Randall Elementary’s current incarnation was born. Like the impeccably-bred bulldog mascot, we can reveal the school’s family line, but luck always plays a role. The school has become one of the best in Gila County, judging by state standards, after years of mediocrity peppered by triumph and occasional awards.

This week’s featured dogs are great with children

The first annual Pet-A-Palooza is coming!

4-H animal deadline nears

Young people, ages 9 to 19, have until Tuesday to register for the 4-H market animal program. Market animals include steers, swine, lambs and goats. The deadline to register is 5 p.m., Tuesday, Jan. 20.

Formal affair lets community share giving hearts

Formal dress and generous hearts are the rule for the upcoming Black & White Ball.

Know objectives of mutual funds before investing

With thousands of mutual funds on the market, how can you choose the ones that are right for your individual needs?

Retirement campus doing well in economic times

Even in this economic recession, Rim Country Health and Retirement Community has completed a remarkable turnaround, reporting a 160 percent revenue increase in just the last three years.

Widening of Hwy. 87 near Rye scheduled for Jan. 19

Construction crews will soon begin widening several miles of southbound shoulders along Highway 87 north of Rye, the Arizona Department of Transportation said Friday.

Beaver Valley gets portable tank

Beaver Valley Fire Department personnel recently conducted training using the new, 3,000-gallon portable bladder tank, which was provided to the BVFD through a $2,500 grant from the Arizona State Land Department’s Forestry Division.

Not all National Guard outfits are created equal

It was my fourth day on KP in one week. I was sweating over a 20-gallon pot whose bottom was crusted with the last remains of an incinerated something or other. It was the fourth pot of five crusted with the same mess, and the worst so far. It had taken me two hours to clean the first three. I was scraping burned-on stuff with a large kitchen spoon and getting nowhere.

Thanks to the wonderful people of Payson

Thank you to the wonderful people of Payson.

Coupon ad, story helps with our success

In our hard economic times, it was a big welcome when the Payson Roundup elected to do a news article on our resale and consignment boutique, Re-Runs.

Sheltie safe at home

I want to thank all the wonderful people in the Pine area who allowed me to hang up fliers in all their businesses, everyone who was looking and watching out for Cody, and especially Mike, the wonderful man who called me and said, “I have your dog. I have Cody.”

Thanks to the Roundup and the community

The parishioners of St. Paul’s Episcopal Church would like to thank the Payson Roundup for the very nice article, photo and editorial regarding Kenny Powell that appeared in the paper in early December.

Chili’s Grill and Bar in Payson is not closing

Despite what reports you may have heard, I’m confirming that the Chili’s Grill and Bar in Payson has no plans to close.

Kirkpatrick’s victory is sad commentary on the mentality of the majority of voters

How much does it cost to purchase a seat in the U.S. House of Representatives?

Payson Womans Club members vote to accept county offer

I apologize to the Gila County Board of Supervisors, the Payson Womans Club membership, the Daughters of the Gila County Pioneers, the Payson Pioneer Cemetery Board, the Pyle-Holbrook Foundation, supporters of the Payson Womans Club and the Pioneer Cemetery for the outrageous letter in the Jan. 6 issue of the Payson Roundup newspaper submitted by Shirley Lose.

One-on-one with Hardcastle difficult to handle

OK ... this one-on-one interview is beyond what even I can choke down.

School offers vital lesson

Back in 2001, Julia Randall Elementary School might have been cited as a cautionary tale — an example of the frustrating, wearying slump of American schools.

Around Rim Country

Painting raffle to raise piano funds

A Baldwin baby grand piano has been donated to the Community Presbyterian Church for the ongoing series of jazz concerts, but now the Payson Friends of Jazz must raise funds to pay for expenses incurred in accepting the donation and purchases of necessary accessories, such as a bench and cover.

County looks to lease space on Main Street

The county is considering three Main Street buildings to unscrunch itself, officials said this week.

Schools to get two-week breaks

Two-week-long fall and spring breaks have quietly returned to the Payson Unified School District, the little-discussed measure contrasting heavily to the controversy caused by previous calendar changes.

Murder suspect indicted in Ohio

An Ohio murder suspect who reportedly hid out in Arizona for 30 years under an assumed name has been indicted by a grand jury and is awaiting extradition back to Ohio to face trial.

Last ditch talks set for buyout

A last-ditch, Feb. 5 meeting to discuss the sale of the Pine-Strawberry Water Company to the water district has spawned a fresh swirl of rumors.

Being drawn for an Arizona sheep tag is a big-game hunter’s dream come true

It’s a lifelong dream for big-game hunters to draw an Arizona sheep tag for the month-long December hunt, which has recently come to a close. For the year 2008, there were 90 lucky hunters who were in the field pursuing either the desert bighorn or the Rocky Mountain variety.

FAN Club continues donations to help Payson schools

Those 50-50 raffles the Friends And Neighbors (FAN) Club hosted during the past volleyball and football seasons were a big hit with fans and boosters.

’79 Longhorns beat St. Johns three times

In the Jan. 6 edition of the Payson Roundup I wrote about the death of former St. Johns basketball coach Veryl Heap.

Computerized scheduling

A controversial new computerized system that could drastically change the way high school sports schedules are compiled, how much time is spent traveling and region membership is being proposed by the Arizona Interscholastic Association and backed by some school superintendents.

Longhorns unbeaten in region play

After trailing most of the first quarter, the Payson Longhorns turned on the afterburners, scorching the Round Valley Elks, 80-55.

Lady Horns tough in East

It appears the road to the East Region girls basketball title travels through Alchesay and the highway to state honors winds in and out of Winslow.

Hellsgate Fire Department to cover Bear Flat

This past Wednesday evening at the Tonto Village Fire Station (Hellsgate Fire Station No. 22), during a special meeting, the Hellsgate Fire Department board officially voted to accept the Bear Flat area, approximately three square miles, into the fire department’s boundaries. The board accepted the validated petitions and the change in boundaries will take effect 30 days from Jan. 7.

Pony Express riders come to Christopher Creek

It is that time of year again for the largest, fastest event to hit Christopher Creek — the 50th Annual Hashknife Pony Express ride. These guys are fast, and if you don’t hurry and take your picture, you will miss the exchanging of the mail.

Dead trees pose potential hazard

Just when we’ve recovered from the holidays it’s time to start gathering information for taxes. I like to start early because, invariably, there is something I must order, research or verify, which always seems to take precious time. Oh for the days of long ago when I could file a 1040 EZ!

Tease photo

Russian roulette in Rim Country

Forest managers scramble to prevent Rim residents from paying a fatal price for a century of mistakes

Dan Eckstein squinted up the steep slope crowded with towering, bushy junipers close on the edge of Payson. Then he casually touched the tip of his flaming torch to the closest branch.

Wednesday, January 14

The American Riviera

Located on the Pacific Ocean, just 90 miles north of Los Angeles, Santa Barbara is a perfect beach community. It offers dazzling beauty, a fine climate, spectacular fine-sand beaches, and a casual yet sophisticated lifestyle and a multitude of activities to suit any taste.

Tackle the menu for the big game

OK. The Cardinals are one game away from the 2009 Super Bowl. It’s time to celebrate. Feasting and football is a match that’s hard to beat.

Black & White

A ball for charity

Formal dress and generous hearts are the rule for the upcoming Black & White Ball.

The story of Payson, Arizona

Chapter 11: Payson joins Gila County

The early days of Gila County it earned the distinction of being among the West’s most violent counties. The many shootings in and around Payson contributed to that dubious distinction.

Swollen ankles are treatable

I retain fluid in my ankles and feet. They swell during the day. After a night’s sleep they’re normal size. I have taken a diuretic for a whole year, but it’s no better. Why? My doctor has thrown his hands up at this.

The Man Who Owns the News: Inside the Secret World of Rupert Murdoch by Michael Wolff

Reviewed by Larry Cox

Rupert Murdoch, head of News Corp., the $70 billion global media conglomerate, was asked during the recent U.S. presidential campaign if he had a preference between the two candidates. He didn’t hesitate for a second before answering Barack Obama. He then added that Obama was his pick because his election would sell more newspapers.

The Great Hoax

Many years ago I was living in Ft. Wayne, Ind. and was the program director for the CBS-TV station there. Among my many friends was a chap by the name of Jim Robinson. He was part of a little theatre group and we shared an interest in “Grand Opera”.

TCCA concert Jan. 14

The Tonto Community Concert Association (TCCA) part of its 30th anniversary season will play host to the rising star Pavlo in concert at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 14.

Get healthy, take a tai chi class at GCC

The Payson campus of Gila Community College offers many classes of exercise and physical activity: physioball, pilates, bowling, swimming, hatha yoga, strength and flexibility training, weights, scuba diving and tai chi.

Forest Service burns piles to protect Rim communities

Weather willing, the Forest Service will torch hundreds of debris piles on the outskirts of Pine, Strawberry and Payson starting this week — hoping to reduce the fire danger on more than 2,200 acres before the start of the next fire season.

Payson birders find 3,900 birds, 87 species

The count is in — the Payson Christmas Bird Count, that is. Since 1900, the National Audubon Society has conducted bird counts throughout North America.

Social Security questions and answers

Q - How are my retirement benefits calculated?

Tuesday, January 13

Tease photo

Club gives students a chance to argue

The television show “Law and Order” may not be an accurate portrayal of the justice system to a Payson High School student, but the show has inspired students like sophomore Caleb Harrison to join the school’s Mock Trial Club nonetheless.

Concert features guitarist/vocalist Pavlo

As part of its 30th anniversary season, the Tonto Community Concert Association (TCCA) will play host to the rising star, Pavlo, in concert at 7 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 14.

Social Security’s 2009 resolutions

The new year is a time for many people, companies and organizations to make resolutions for the year ahead.

Changes planned and unplanned in new year

How things have changed over the years. When I was a child, seeing an airplane in the sky was a big event. Now humans are living in space. Our home entertainment, if we were lucky, consisted of a radio, usually complete with static.

School briefs

Michael Rose, instructor, is teaching an exciting new computer course at Gila Community College called Multimedia.

Where is my OxyContin?

A governing board goal this year is to educate parents, students and the community about the prevalence and dangers of prescription drug abuse.

Feature Teacher

As a student, I absolutely hated to stand up in front of the class, so it was only natural that I’d become a teacher.

A heartfelt thanks to Pine/ Strawberry communities

Bruce Thompson passed away on Dec. 11, 2008 after a battle with pancreatic cancer. Bruce was the president and strong supporter of the Pine/Strawberry Senior Center and loved this community very much.

Rim Country proves compassion never goes out of fashion

First State Bank would like to thank the generosity of everyone who participated in the third annual Senior Angel Christmas Tree. The tree was a huge success!

Sunrise prayer service was a great start to the new year

Praise the Lord for the wonderful New Year’s Day sunrise prayer service at the overlook by the top of Houston Mesa Road. Yes, praise Him for His patience with us and our nation, for His direction, love and other blessings, such as the beautiful scenery He has created in Rim Country.

All judges should be elected

Having recently attended Gila County Justice Court in Payson, I observed two hearings back-to-back regarding the same issues, but not related in any other way. One hearing was conducted by elected Judge Dorothy Little and the other by part-time judge, Jim Weeks. Each hearing took about the same amount of time, but the difference in conduct of these two magistrates was shocking.

Happy with Obama

The future president has a Herculean task set before him with the wretched wreckage that George W. Bush has left for him.

Community comes through to help woman who lost her home

I wanted to take a moment to send out a huge thank you to the Rim Country community that pulled together for one of my employees over the holidays.

Help was amazing

I lived in the house on Ponderosa Street that exploded on Dec. 16, 2008. The donations, gifts, money, assistance, and emotional support that I have received since that time have been absolutely amazing.

Parents love their schools

All right. We’re trying to be big about this.

Around Rim Country

Get your tickets for formal ball

Formal dress and generous hearts are the rule for the upcoming Black and White Ball.

Rock slide Thursday along Highway 87, concrete barriers installed

To the dismay of Arizona Department of Transportation engineers, the hills surrounding Highway 87 seem to be falling down and landing on the roadway.

Arrest of two juveniles could solve burglaries

The recent arrest of two local 17-year-olds on burglary and theft charges stemming from stolen soda from a vending machine led police to an apartment containing numerous stolen goods that could solve a string of burglaries in Payson.

Strange tale of crippled coot and warm hearts

The day was cold. And the duck was a coot. But their hearts were warm.

Payson gets new vice mayor, rec director

Still struggling to cut costs and reorganize, Payson now has both a new vice mayor and a new director of parks and recreation.

Kidnap, assault gets man indicted

A 44-year-old Star Valley man has been indicted by a county grand jury on kidnapping and attempted second-degree murder, among other charges.

Survey says parents happy with schools

Parents satisfied with quality of education within the district

Parents are more satisfied with the Payson Unified School District than they were last year, according to survey results released during a Monday board meeting.

Olympic archer returns to visit Payson students

America’s most talented archer returned Jan. 9 to his roots when 19-year-old Brady Ellison visited Payson Elementary School to talk to students about his pursuit of the Olympic dream.

It was easy to root for the Eagles

For about four hours on Sunday, I was one of the biggest Philadelphia Eagles fans in Arizona.

Payson High student athletic trainers honored

The athletic trainers of every sports program are among the most critical and most often unsung participants. These are the people who make it possible for athletes to return to play after any of the assorted minor injuries they can incur in the course of a game.

Tease photo

Wrestlers have tough matches coming on the road

Payson’s “Big Five” of Jacob Spears, Ben Lee, Ben Sandoval, Nick Goodman and Bryan Burke will lead the Longhorn wrestling team tomorrow, Jan. 14, to Wickenburg and three days later to Alamosa, Colo.

Horns open East play with a victory

For most of the past weekend, sports fans around Arizona believed defending East Region champion and 2008 state runner-up Payson had lost by 20 points to lowly Show Low.

Saturday, January 10

Shirley Dawson elected supervisor chairman

A unanimous vote Tuesday made Shirley Dawson chairman of the Gila County Board of Supervisors, but Supervisor Tommie Martin is watching carefully.

DUI arrests down over holidays

A holiday roundup of drunken drivers ended with 12 DUI arrests locally, a slight decrease over last year, reported three state agencies.

Annual bald eagle workshop set for Jan. 17 in Flagstaff

Ever wonder where eagles go during the wintertime? Find this out and more at the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s annual Bald Eagle Workshop in Flagstaff on Saturday, Jan. 17.

Three-mile hike, urban biking, wildlife viewing events coming

Town Trails and Outdoor Recreation Coordinator Mary McMullen has scheduled three recreational opportunities that she’s sure will be a hit.

Crowley resigns from college board

Gila Community College board member Don Crowley resigned from his seat Tuesday due to health problems.

Computer classes offered at Gila Community College

How about starting the new year with increased computer skills?

Friday, January 9

Special group of dedicated people keeps shelter going

Red’s babies. It’s a term you’ll often hear around the shelter. These are usually the pups that are living in the front puppy house where Red, aka Kenneth Wright, most often works.

Owner plans to wok up area scene with buffet

A Show Low chef is bringing a new restaurant to town. The former Country Kitchen, near the intersection of Highways 260 and 87 in the Payson Village Shopping Center, will soon be converted to China Wok Buffet.

Future looks bright for Rim Country anglers

The month of December has been a very wet 31 days with almost 6 inches of rain in the bucket.

Longhorns travel to Show Low for East game

A 79-32 pounding of San Tan Foothills sets the stage for the Longhorn boys basketball team (8-7) to travel today (Jan. 9) to Show Low where the East Region campaign tips off.

Who’s looking out for individual investors?

If you’ve been investing for a while, you know that there are few guarantees in the investment world and that you’re going to be taking some risks with your money.

Little League officials gearing up for season

The 2008 Little League season was one of the most successful in local youth sports history. Hundreds of of boys and girls played during a fun-filled spring and summer season.

Scholarship named after former coach

This spring, a pair of Payson High School graduates will be the recipients of the first-ever Ted Pettet Scholarships valued at $2,000 each.

Tease photo

Grand Canyon State Games start Jan. 11

First of 39 events begins at WestWorld

Calling all weekend warriors and amateur athletes — it’s time to etch another chapter into Payson’s storied Grand Canyon State Games history book.

Man still missing near Forest Lakes

Searchers are still looking for a 51-year-old Chandler architect who has been missing for a week.

How I learned a really different method of teaching

Not all teaching jobs are created equal. Some are so much fun they seem more like a pleasure cruise than a job.

Community needs to challenge supervisors on facility needs

A mother walked into the grocery store, accompanied by her 3-year-old child. As they walked down the candy aisle, the 3-year-old grabbed two big bags of candy and tried to place them in the shopping cart. The mother took the candy away and returned it to the shelf. The child started screaming, threw himself on the floor and continued kicking and screaming, “I want candy!”

Pine-Strawberry Fire Department awards banquet a huge success

We here at the PSFD would like to thank all of the sponsors who helped make our annual awards banquet a huge success.

Pine-Strawberry Fire Department awards banquet a huge success

We here at the PSFD would like to thank all of the sponsors who helped make our annual awards banquet a huge success.

Around Rim Country

Payson Jazz Trio performs Sunday

Payson Community Presbyterian Church has just acquired a Baldwin baby grand piano, and it will have its first public performance at 2 p.m., Sunday, Jan. 11 when Bob Smolenski leads the Payson Jazz Trio, with guest guitarist John Darst. It is a magnificent sounding black beauty; so don’t miss this special performance.

Mud Springs goes out like a lamb

The Mud Springs extension roared into town politics like a hungry lion a year ago, but on Tuesday gamboled out like a fuzzy lamb.

One-on-one with Hardcastle

Controversial water company owner breaks decade of silence

After several years of refusing Payson Roundup requests for face-to-face interviews, Brooke Utilities President Robert Hardcastle consented this week to an interview, and used the occasion to raise questions about the motives of some of those leading the effort to take over the Pine and Strawberry water companies.

Low interest rates good for borrowing

The upside of what might be the longest recession since the Great Depression is the historically low interest rates, experts said at the Guerrilla Tactics —Business Financial forum Tuesday at Gila Community College.

Tease photo

Blaze engulfs two-story house

Police and fire officials are still investigating what sparked a two-alarm blaze that quickly engulfed a two-story home Wednesday afternoon on a scenic hilltop east of town.

New supervisors seek sweeping county changes

New roles for current employees proposed, end to lobbying

Roughly an hour after the newly sworn-in Gila County supervisors garnished new Chairman Shirley Dawson with her gavel, she proposed sweeping changes to county organization, including the introduction of a legislative manager and public information officer.

New year is the time to get involved in community

It is a new year and it is time to get involved with your community.

New snow makes village look like a picture postcard

Brrrr! The weather outside is chilly! The thermometer in Tonto Village has hardly moved since the Christmas holiday.

Snowy weather puts animals on the move

Many of us spent this week trying to establish new routines or settle back into the old ones. Sometimes I wish I could take an extra week just to recover from the holidays, but I suspect even that wouldn’t be enough!

Tease photo

Forest on the edge

Blunders uproot old-growth ecosystem

My snowmobile coasted to a halt in the unbroken snow. Game and Fish Habitat Specialist John Goodwin roared up beside me, then cut his engine.

Thursday, January 8

Fire destroys hilltop home

Police and fire officials are still investigating what sparked a two-alarm blaze that quickly engulfed a two-story home Wednesday afternoon on a scenic hilltop east of town.

Wednesday, January 7

Jazz concert Sunday

The Payson Jazz Trio, featuring Bob Smolenski on piano, Mike Buskirk on bass and Gerry Reynolds on drums, with special guest, John Darst on guitar, will perform at the Jan. 11 Payson Friends of Jazz and Community Presbyterian Church jazz concert. The program starts at 2 p.m. at the church, which is located at 800 W. Main St. in Payson.

New Year’s resolution: Better your walk with Christ

When I think of walking, especially after enjoying all the delicious food of this season, exercise generally comes to mind. However, when I meditate a little longer on the word “walk,” other images also come to my mind.

Fibrocystic breasts don’t up cancer risk

Menopause can lessen sexual drive, but it shouldn’t completely eliminate it, and menopause doesn’t usually drag on for eight years

Bert Slater, founder of the Roundup

Bert Slater, originally from Illinois, started the Payson Roundup in 1946. About a year or so before he died in 1957, he wrote his story of the paper. Here’s what he said:

January cleanup to jump-start the new year

The holidays are over. For most of us, the high energy, non-stop activity of the season has slowed and left us with time to puzzle over a thing or two:

Trim some fat from your daily diet

Eating healthy is a goal for many people. Regardless of a person’s age, the trend toward adopting a more healthy lifestyle is here to stay, and it often begins with altering our diets.

What every pantry should have

Stock up on the basics for easy home-cooked meals and then make your meat and poultry purchases based on what is on sale.

Exercise tips for seniors starting anew

Babies today have it better than those that came before them. That’s because, according to a 2007 report from the U.S. Census Bureau, a baby born today has a lot more life to look forward to than one born 50 years ago. A child born today can expect to be around for the next 78 years, whereas one born half a century ago had a projected life span of nine fewer years.

Lucky 13

Pine Resident, Maureen Pastika, bags a trophy Elk.

SV mayor opposes ‘frivolous’ ceremony

With town budgets crashing all over the state, Star Valley’s mayor says it is frivolous and unnecessary to hold a separate swearing-in ceremony for new Gila County supervisors Tuesday.

No gold for Longhorns

Although the Longhorn wrestling team was shut out in its bid for Mingus Invitational gold medals, the squad did produce two silver medalists.

Tuesday, January 6

Big idea or pipe dream?

Big ideas. Unlikely dreams. Unreasonable hope. How very American. How like Payson.

Leaders push plan for college campus

University branch proposal spurs heavy maneuvering

The potential for a four-year college in Payson, which local leaders have been pushing for years, ballooned recently when Arizona State University’s president reportedly pushed for small, regional campuses around the state.

Tease photo

Longhorn band’s threadbare champions

Payson High School’s band teacher predicts a renaissance.

Containers float down Rye Creek

Several Connex style shipping containers allegedly being used to control flood waters that floated down Rye Creek just before Christmas, have been removed from the creek.

Rim’s wet weather fills Roosevelt

The wet weather on the Rim, which saw more than six inches of precipitation in Payson in November and December, has helped put Roosevelt Lake at 97 percent of capacity — about 1.6 million cubic feet of water, according to information from Salt River Project.

Rim Country quilters stitch together awards

There are an unusually large number of quilters in northern Gila County, and many of them participated in the Fourth Annual Rim Country Quilt Roundup in mid-November.

Featured Teacher: Band boss’ bottom line? It’s a blast!

I like working on my car. I have a ’66 Mustang.

Site’s popularity reverses closure decision

After more than 200 cars crammed alongside Highway 87, bringing sledding enthusiasts to tackle the hill at Cinch Hook last week, the U.S. Forest Service has reversed a decision to keep the popular site closed. It has opened the gates, allowing visitors to enjoy the popular hill and the recent snowfall.

Help in crisis appreciated

On behalf of my family I just wanted to thank all of those who were involved in helping us at Cinch Hook, Dec. 30 when my daughter had to be air lifted to the Valley.

Win-win doesn’t look like winning for Womans Club

For the past 88 years the Payson Womans Club has helped improve life in this community.

Standing with Israel against terrorists

Imagine spending every day apprehensively waiting for a loud siren to blare, signaling that you have 60 to 90 seconds to find shelter. What would you do? How would you send your children to school? How would you go to work? It is difficult — if not inconceivable — for most Americans to imagine living their lives like this. Yet, many Israelis have had to live with this threat from Hamas rocket and missile attacks day in and day out for years. In fact, in just the week before Israel launched its recent military operation against Hamas, hundreds of rockets and mortar shells were fired at Israeli civilian areas, including the firing of 80 rockets on just a single day.

Around Rim Country

Overstock sale at LFOP Bookstore

During the month of January, the Library Friends of Payson Bookstore is featuring an overstock sale on works by Mary Higgins Clark, Jeffrey Deaver, Danielle Steele, Patricia Cornwell and Barbara Taylor Bradford. All hardback and paperback books by these authors are being offered as a 2 for 1 special. As always, the second item must be of equal or lesser value than the first

Supervisor ends long, lucky career

Cites creation of one public works district as significant accomplishment

The swearing in of a new Gila County supervisor Tuesday brought to a close Jose Sanchez’s 14-year political career, which was punctuated by serendipitous timing and dedication to the community he served.

Tab to drop SV water lawsuit: $16,000

Star Valley will spend $16,000 in attorney fees to dismiss condemnation proceedings against the Payson Water Company if the town council approves a resolution Tuesday night.

51-year-old Forest Lakes man missing since Friday

The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office is looking for a 51-year-old Forest Lakes man who has been missing since Friday.

Unhinged ecosystem poses threat to Rim communities

The ancient tree reared, dizzyingly upward, the center pole of a complex, now beleaguered ecosystem. The gigantic ponderosa pine had put down roots before the pilgrims landed, and now stood impassively in a cathedral of giants, sheltering a whole world of creatures. High overhead, a woodpecker scavenged for insects, burrowing through the deep crevices and barked canyons of the giant tree. At my feet, lay the debris of a pine cone scavenged by a tuft-eared Abert's squirrel. I pulled loose a bit of bark, and inhaled the distinctive ponderosa scent of vanilla, a bouquet produced by the complex mix of chemicals that help defend the ancient tree against insects, disease and drought.

Senior Center resumes meal program

The meal program provided by the Payson Senior Center has found a temporary residence at the Payson Masonic Lodge at 200 E. Rancho Road.

Colorz Salon moves to new location

After three years of business, Colorz Salon has moved to a new, larger location on Highway 260.

Statistics show fewer homes on the market

The Rim Country real estate market in 2008 was not exempt from the slowdown that is being experienced nationwide. Following are statistics for 2008. The statistics were derived from information reported to the Central Arizona Board of Realtors and do not include unreported or for sale by owner transactions.

St. Johns coaching legend dies

The dean of small-town high school basketball, a role model for all young coaches and one of the state’s most respected sports figures, has died.

Lots of ‘what ifs’ come to mind about ‘the one that got away’

A rather tall but rotund seventh-grader caught my eye about 10 years ago while officiating a junior high tournament game in Rim Country Middle School gymnasium.

East title chase to heat up in Show Low

A flurry of nonregion games and two tournaments have set the stage for the Longhorns’ run at a third successive East region championship.

Tease photo

Lady Horns on a roll

A 67-44 win over Estrella Foothills on Jan. 3 in Wilson Dome sets the stage for the onset of the East region season. It tips off at 6 p.m. Jan. 9 in Show Low against the Lady Cougars (2-8) who have struggled in pre-season. The Cats’ only two victories have been over Tucson Sunnyside in the Queen Creek Turkey Shoot Out, and by three points against 1A Heber Mogollon.

Saturday, January 3

Washington office overrules biologists on protecting snake

Administrators in Washington simply threw out biologists’ recommendation to list as endangered the Rim Country’s Northern Mexican Garter Snake, according to an investigation by the Office of the Inspector General.

Guerrilla Tactics forum offered for businesses

The Payson Roundup, along with Gila Community College and KMOG AM Radio, is sponsoring another free business forum on surviving in today’s tough economic times using guerrilla tactics.

Landowners face lien if property not cleaned up

Property owners beware: clean your blight or else.

Town adjusts personnel rules to cope with layoffs

The Payson Town Council has loosened personnel rules, shuffled hours and positions to get through the town’s fiscal crisis.

New apprentice hunting license offers a “test drive” at no cost

Effective Jan. 1, the Arizona Game and Fish Department is offering a new “Apprentice Hunting License” at no charge, to encourage existing hunters to become mentors and introduce a friend, neighbor, relative, or co-worker to the traditions and importance of hunting.

Friday, January 2

Right person needed to fill academic scholars position in Payson

Richard Meyer is certain that the vacated position of Payson High School’s coordinator for Arizona Academic Scholars will fill.

Ex- Blue Ridge coach sought by two 5A schools

Rumors in high school coaching circles are that Mountain Pointe and Dobson are pursing former Show Low coach and ex-Blue Ridge star Jeremy Hathcock.

Lady Horns hoping layoff doesn’t hurt them

The Lady Longhorns can be excused if they appear more than a bit rusty when they take to the Wilson Dome court tomorrow, Jan. 3, to take on the Estrella Foothills Wolves.

Foothills, Longhorns to tangle Saturday

A fierce rivalry is sure to be stirred tomorrow, Jan. 3, in Goodyear Estrella Foothills where the two prep teams that battled for last year’s 3A state championship renew acquaintances.

All-Arizona honors go to senior Matt Wilson

Earning all-state honors is a huge accomplishment for any high school football player.

Tease photo

3A champs honored by Cards

Payson High was among the seven high school football state championship teams honored Dec. 28 by the Arizona Cardinals.

Eagle biologists’ report overruled by higher-ups

Desert bald eagle debate reveals how politics trumped science at Fish and Wildlife Service

The internal debate about whether to continue to protect the bald eagle population in Arizona offers an example of the mingling of politics and biology at the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, concluded a report from the Office of the Inspector General.

Payson community thanked by St. Vincent de Paul

Once again the Society of St. Vincent de Paul would like to thank you, the compassionate, caring community of Payson, for the generous donations during the Thanksgiving and Christmas seasons.

Efforts to encourage music program applauded

I want to applaud the efforts of those in the Payson Unified School District and the community who continue the fight for music programs in the elementary schools.

How can a kid have ‘nothing to do?’

If you can remember your childhood even slightly, I’ll bet I can tell you something you said almost every day, sometime between five and seven in the evening.

Much can happen in one second

Those sneaky clocks. They’ve done it again.

Around Rim Country

Main Street hosts First Friday events

The Main Street merchants invite residents and visitors of the Rim Country to join them from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday, Jan. 2 for the celebration of a New Year.

ADOT officials say Beeline slide still slipping

State highway crews will build new barrier walls to prevent loose soil from falling onto Highway 87 near the site of a March landslide, the Arizona Department of Transportation said Wednesday.

Workshop gives businesses the edge

Business owners looking for a financial edge for 2009 are invited to a special workshop Jan. 6 — Guerrilla Tactics: Financial Operations.

Gila County officially out of drought status

At the start of 2008, Payson and Gila County experienced abnormally dry conditions — a drought you might say — but with nearly 5 inches of rain and snow in the last month and rainfall totals above average for the year, we enter 2009 with no short-term drought in sight.

Endangered Species process ‘abused’ by wildlife service

Report says three Rim Country species among those subject to manipulation by U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife official in charge of protecting endangered species repeatedly “interjected herself personally and profoundly” to prevent the listing of species and used tactics that were “abrupt and abrasive, if not abusive” to intimidate and demoralize managers and biologists, concludes a recently released report from the Office of the Inspector General.

Tease photo

Drivers take seniors for a ride

John Breaux drives circles in Payson for 28 hours each week. “I go home and I’m dizzy,” he said, laughing, the sleigh bells affixed to the bus’ ceiling ringing. He pulled into Walmart’s parking lot for the second time Tuesday, before heading to Bashas’, also for the second time.

Car show moves to Green Valley Park

After months of negotiations, Beeline Cruise-In Auto Show organizers have found a new place to park all those import, classic, hot rod, low-ride, roadsters and award-winning cars.

Reflections on 2008

2008 is now in the past. It was a very busy year here at the shelter. There were many highs and lows. We handled roughly 830 dogs, 608 cats and 14 “others.” Among the others were a pregnant mini goat, an angry Pot Bellied Pig, two geese, a couple of ducks, several bunnies, ferrets and a guinea pig.

Questions to ask to protect your inheritance

At some point in your life, you may inherit a sizable sum of money — and what you do with it could have a major impact on your financial future.

Affordable housing complex nearing completion near Beeline Highway

With more apartment complexes converting to condominiums, it could become harder for low-income households to afford housing in Payson, but a new 48-unit complex is nearing completion and could alleviate some of the demand.

Here’s hoping for better times in the new year

Well, it’s a new year and I am sure everyone is hoping for better times. Especially for the economy to turn around. Let’s hope 2009 is a better year. Let’s hope for no more home foreclosures, and for the lowest gas and oil prices. Let’s hope for lower mortgage rates. For the end to the war, and for a cure for cancer, heart disease and diabetes. Let’s just remember to have hope.

Wind keeps residents awake, leaves yards a mess

Well we might have lost most of our snow during the Christmas storm, but we certainly were not lacking for moisture.

No lights, and the pipes were frozen

It is wonderful to be back in the village after spending a week in Yuma. Don’t get me wrong, I loved being with my family for the holidays, but it was very hectic.

Famous artist fondly remembered

The dark blue kitchen cabinets and the gold and burnt orange art deco décor inside Frances Rich’s Payson home belied the whimsical core beneath a sometimes gruff exterior. The gruff Rich fired many a household helper on her first day. The gruff Rich was stern, a sometimes isolated genius of an artist who sculpted the seven-foot Army-Navy Nurse Monument that sits in Arlington National Cemetery in Washington, D.C.