Number Of Weekly Visitors Down

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Oh the irony of living in Northern Arizona.

On Saturday morning, I noticed we had moved in to Stage 3 water conservation. Then I opened the Sunday edition of The Arizona Republic to the Valley section to see a picture of a man watering a cactus. As if that wasn’t bad enough, a few pages later there was a picture of another man hosing his dog down at a car wash.

Such wanton behavior in the Rim Country would probably land you in jail. In spite of the weather genies assuring us that the monsoons have arrived, it seems as if we are merely being teased and tormented with unrelenting muggy heat each day.

Things sure seemed quiet this week, especially after the large crowds we had over the 4th of July weekend. I guess everyone is taking a breather and gearing up for the next round of visitors. We don’t seem to have the steady flow of folks passing through as the past summers and I can’t help but wonder if the continued economic woes are affecting even in-state travel.

The Department of Transportation continues the Safety Improvement Project on Highway 87, mostly clearing trees, digging out stumps and boulders, and grading the soon-to-be new lanes.

So far there haven’t been any real delays, however, there is a lot of heavy equipment working both sides of the highway and one would be wise to go slow and keep a sharp eye out for all the workers and trucks.

A few days ago we were stopped briefly and got to watch them drop one of the last granddaddy trees still left near the side of the road. I admit I had mixed feelings about it all. According to ADOT’s Web site Bradshaw Drive. will be closed on Monday, July 20. There will be a clearly marked detour directing motorists to the Old Country Road just north of Bradshaw.

So far ADOT has accomplished a lot of progress with very little effect on traffic. In fact, I’ve seen less delays here in spite of the work than on a typical weekend trying to get through Star Valley.

Backyard Bible Club

The Payson First Baptist Church is hosting a “Backyard Bible Club” at the Pine Ramada starting Monday, July 20 through Friday, July 24 from 9 until 11 a.m. Parents may drop off their children who are between the ages of 4 and 12 years old or accompany smaller children who would like to attend. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact Pastor Anthony Garrisi at 474-3530.

With the weather remaining unbearably hot, it’s a perfect time to visit the Pine-Strawberry Museum. The Pine-Strawberry Archaeological and Historical Society is currently offering residents a reduced rate for annual memberships, making it a perfect time to join.

Family memberships are now only $15 and business memberships are $25. The museum is open from 10 a.m. until 2 p.m. every day and hosts a treasure trove of history about our towns.

They are always looking for folks willing to volunteer as well — just feel free to stop by the museum and speak with Karen Kelly regarding their current needs.

Quilt auction

The Historical Society is teaming up with the Strawberry Patchers to host a “Beautiful Quilt Auction” on Saturday, Aug. 8 at the Cultural Hall in Pine.

Viewing begins at 10 a.m. and the live auction commences at 5:30 p.m. In addition to the auction there will be quilts for sale and vendors with other wares as well. Best of all, admission is absolutely free.

For entry forms or other information, please call Kris Lovetro at (928) 476-2368 or (602) 390-2046.

Bushes cleared from post office

You may have noticed that the large bushes at the front of the post office have been cleared out. The folks at Take Pride have cleared the bushes in anticipation of planting flowers and other plants that are a bit more appealing. The old bushes had become a repository for cigarette butts and other trash, so the folks at Take Pride hope the new area will not only look nicer, but be easier to clean up as well.

The board of directors of the Pine-Strawberry Medical Clinic is seeking at least one new member, for a three-year term, beginning July 2009.

Board members attend monthly meetings (the third Monday of the month, at 5:30 p.m.) and assist in maintaining a facility for medical services in Pine-Strawberry.

The Pine-Strawberry Medical Clinic Board of Directors annual meeting is set for 9 a.m., Saturday, July 18 at the Pine Clinic.

If you are interested or have questions, please contact current board president, Don Smith at 476-2655 or current board vice-president Christine Tetzloff at 472-8323 or lccogoff@msn.com.

That wraps up the week in Pine and Strawberry. Let’s hope by the time you read this, the monsoons will have provided some much-needed rain to our communities.

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