Hungry Elk Pass On Eating Yellow Chrysanthemums

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It’s that time of the year again when the bull elk start singing their night songs and gathering their harems for the mating season.

A few nights ago our dogs, Batman and Robin began going ballistic. Those aren’t their real names, but we’ve been calling them that after my eldest daughter observed the 7-month-old puppy racing alongside our older dog in pursuit of some real or imagined foe. They look hilariously like the bat mobile with side car attached racing off to a dangerous mission.

After several minutes ignoring our threats to be quiet, we reluctantly got flashlights and discovered several elk ravaging our caged pots of tomatoes and flowers right next to the house!

It takes a lot to get my husband excited, but seeing his tomato plants knocked over and being heartily consumed was more than he could take. He was able to scatter the offenders for the moment, but the next day we discovered plenty of damage to just about any green living object still left in our yard.

Not only had they plucked my chrysanthemums completely out of the pots by their roots, they had daintily nibbled every single flower.

Interestingly, they left the yellows. I’m not sure if they prefer the orange ones or simply got caught before they had finished dining.

Since they left the entire root ball and leaves intact, I plopped them right back in the pot hoping they’ll continue to grow.

One of the apple trees which has a cage protecting it up to about 7 feet had damage far above the wire.

We figured there must be a pretty big bull out there to get up that high and sure enough the following night we spied him. I woke to his bugling siren song and discovered several females generously mowing our meadow.

As we scanned the scenario, suddenly there he was — standing right in the middle of the road in front of our driveway signaling any lonely hearts club females. And what a beauty he was! At least 6 points (it was hard to tell from our angle), spanning a good six to eight feet, he was quite a sight to behold.

In spite of Batman and Robin’s desire to save the day, we made them stay inside until the herd moved on.

Yes, it’s that time of the year again.

Done deal

This time it really is a done deal! As of Sept. 30 the PSWID (you and I) are the proud new owners of the Pine and Strawberry water companies.

If your water bill is automatically deducted from your bank account electronically, you are urged to make arrangements to discontinue that service immediately and pay your current bill at the new Customer Service Center located at 6306 W. Hardscrabble Road, or mail your payment to P.O. Box 134, Pine, AZ 85544.

To find out the latest information about the successful acquisition, your current bill, or other questions you may have, simply go to the PSWID’s Web site www.pswid.org.

Office hours for the Customer Service Center are Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

This is truly a time of celebration for our communities as we now have the opportunity to determine the best solutions to our ongoing water problems.

Quad run

Don’t forget — tomorrow is the Justice McNeeley Charity Quad Run at the Rimside Grill. Registration begins at 9 a.m. and the Poker Run begins at 10 a.m.

There are several other activities happening throughout the day (volleyball, horseshoes, silent auction, and drawings), so be sure to stop by for loads of fun and the chance to support a great cause!

Tonto Natural Bridge

For those wishing to visit the Tonto Natural Bridge, this is the perfect time — smaller crowds and crisp fall days make for a pleasant weekend for local families and visitors alike.

The bridge is currently open on Saturday and Sunday only during October up until the weekend of Oct. 24-25.

Considering the Arizona State Parks’ continued budget cuts, visiting the bridge is a great way to support the joint efforts of so many in our community who fought hard to keep it open. There are a great group of local volunteers who work hard to keep this vital community resource accessible and we can show our thanks by planning a visit soon.

At the library

The next movie madness at the Isabelle Hunt Memorial Library will take place at 11 a.m., Thursday, Oct. 15. The featured film will be “Scooby Doo! The Mystery Begins” which is rated PG.

If you would like more information on the many programs offered at the library for folks of all ages you can call (928) 476-3678 or visit their Web site at www.pinepubliclibrary.com.

Don’t forget, time is running out to make your order for See’s Candy just in time for the holidays!

That’s it for another great week in Pine and Strawberry!

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