Stories for February 2010

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Friday, February 26

Gallery of great pets for adoption

Once a month, the Humane Society of Central Arizona will present a photos-only

Have you built an investment pyramid?

Of the Seven Wonders of the Ancient World, the only one still in existence is the Great Pyramid of Giza. This tells you something about the strength of the pyramid structure, but it also suggests that the pyramid may be a good metaphor for other endeavors that you wish to endure — such as your investment strategy.

Art fund-raiser to benefit Payson’s Community Kids

Down the Street Art Gallery is hosting a fund-raiser to benefit Payson’s Community Kids on Friday, March 5 from 5 to 8 p.m.

Confusing ballot has Home Rule supporters upset

Payson officials fear voters will miss spending limit proposition on bewildering ballot

The possibility voters will reject Home Rule and force a roughly 60-percent cut in town spending continues to worry town officials and dominate political discussion.

Five teens arrested for drinking at house party

Police say they ended up arresting five teens at a house party last week for underage consumption while investigating a separate call of shots fired in the area.

Can the bald eagles survive?

Great flocks of eagles now gather when the salmon spawn on streams in Alaska. And that’s a great comfort — considering how close we came to losing this marvelous national symbol.

President’s budget cuts funding for border security

While Washington is focused on the “health care summit” and the treatment of terrorists, there are a couple of other issues on the minds of Arizonans — as I found while I was in the state over the week of Presidents Day. Jobs and border security always come up. In this column, I’ll address the border issues, with a focus on how the administration would deal with these issues under its proposed budget.

Former Payson coach tapped for top honor

Dan Reid’s life-long dedication and commitment to youth has earned him a spot in the prestigious Arizona Coaches Association Hall of Fame.

Believe it or not, I speak fluent Italian

Yes, it’s true. I speak fluent Italian ...

Community Almanac

Parents, foster parents, grandparents and caregivers who want to learn simple and practical tips for raising children of all ages are encouraged to attend free Common Sense Parenting training in Payson Feb. 27 and March 6. This is a two-part program at Mountain Bible’s building C, 302 E. Rancho Road.

Taxpayers want government at all levels to spend less

Based on Roundup reports and looking at the upcoming town election, I am struck by a couple of issues which I feel should be addressed by our town council candidates.

Vote yes for home rule and school district override

There are two points I would like to make.

Override letters misleading

Two recent letters objecting to the school override contain misleading assertions:

Remembering a night filled with Shirley Temples and blinkie-light-things

The Christopher Creek Bible Fellowship Church will have services on March 7 in the chapel. The repairs will be complete.

Thanks to coach Elicia Morigeau

The varsity and junior varsity would like to thank Elicia Morigeau for doing a great job as our coach this year, you’ve brought our level of standard to new heights taking us from fifth place in regionals to second place in state competition, which is a great accomplishment and we couldn’t have done it without you!

Scouting program instills good values

A Scout is loyal; this means that he is true to his family, friends, Scout leaders, school, and nation. Loyalty starts in the home. You show through your actions that your family can rely on you to do what needs to be done.

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Volunteers hoping to keep community kids program alive

Organization hopes to raise enough money for a building

The kids playing basketball and making bead crafts one recent February afternoon outside of Payson Community Kids happily avoided the surrounding chaos.

P-S water board member resigns

Terry Schleizer’s resignation from the Pine Strawberry Water Improvement District governing board was a surprise, but her replacement recommendation was a shocker.

SV changes general plan draft

It was one step forward and two steps back at the latest Star Valley general plan meeting.

TCCA hosts ‘Singing Policeman’

Daniel Rodriguez will be the guest artist of the Tonto Community Concert Association at 7 p.m., Friday, March 5 at the Payson High School auditorium.

Gila County donates van to nonprofit organization

Community Bridges, a nonprofit organization that provides treatment for alcohol and drug addition to local county residents, recently received a 1999 Dodge van courtesy of Gila County.

Sponsors needed for annual ‘Tee-off — For Hunger’ golf tourney

The Society of St. Vincent de Paul, which operates the Rim Country Food Bank, will hold its ninth annual “Tee Off — For Hunger” golf tournament Saturday, April 24, at the Payson Golf Course.

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Veterans pack power into Lady Horn track roster

Armed with a veteran laden roster that could be among the deepest in recent Lady Longhorn track and field history, the PHS squad is chomping at the bit for a stretch run at East Region and 3A state honors.

The little team that could

Once there was a town in the mountains of Arizona that was revered for its rich history in the sport of wrestling. Forever it seemed, wrestlers from Payson were some of the most feared “creatures” on the mat. Then quietly, somehow, the championships dwindled. The program continued and people spoke of Payson wrestling as though it were still as tough and fearsome as it always was — everyone but the opponents. While some remembered, and a few kids did well and people still talked as though it were true — the real “glory days” were a figment of the past.

Singer/songwriter dominated country charts in the ’70s

Having faith is what keeps us going, isn’t it? Faith over situations over which we have no control. Faith that the sun will rise tomorrow. Faith that our partners will be true. Faith that if we believe in God we will find everlasting life.

Fly-fishing class set

The Rim Country is a trout fisherman’s paradise. Most of the waters are within an hour’s driving time of the Payson city limits. All these lakes and streams are consistently stocked from April through mid-fall. Most of these waters also have a good number of holdover fish that take on characteristics of true wild trout.

Wildlife Service wants to reduce protection for desert bald eagles

Bald eagles that nest in the Sonoran Desert aren’t essential to the eagle population nationally and so they should lose their protection as an endangered species, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service decided this week.

Two Pine teens busted for possession of pot on school bus

Police say two Pine teens were busted last week for possession of marijuana after reportedly smoking on a bus to school.

Illegal immigrants picked up by sheriff’s deputies

Despite their best attempts to get away, five illegal immigrants were detained Wednesday afternoon after fleeing from a vehicle.

Time to trim the fat from your computer

Times are tough. Schools are cutting back on spending, businesses are tightening up budgets, and families are choosing to go without certain “luxuries.” It’s all part of the process that is required to get us back on track — to stop the bleeding and build up a solid foundation that will bring us through the next difficult time. But how did we get to the point of being overwhelmed with unnecessary expenses, debt, and burdens?

Tortured, hanged dog found by Strawberry women

Two Strawberry women on a stroll through Pine on Valentine’s Day came across the grizzly sight of a tortured animal hanging from a tree.

SV neighbors ban together to clean up roads

With culverts clogged and roads covered in dirt following a thrash of winter storms, the residents of Star Valley took matters into their own hands last weekend and organized a volunteer clean up.

Getting gardening fever; ready for spring

Tonto Village still has snow on the ground from the last storm. The white stuff started to fall on Saturday, Feb. 20 through Monday, Feb. 22. The total accumulation is about four inches on top of what we already had. The bad part was the temperature falling rapidly on Monday afternoon with the wind picking up. By Monday afternoon, the temperature was 20 degrees! I am so ready for spring.

Sweet Spring Fling coming in March

My goodness, I don’t think the weather could get any crazier. The wild snow flurries on Monday, gave way to drizzly rain followed by an outrageous wind storm.

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Wicks Auto reopens under former owner’s son

After closing up his successful auto repair shop in 2007 to retire, Mike Wicks never dreamed he would be working with cars just three years later and this time under the ownership of his son.

Entire community came together to help those in need

A successful and historic food drive was recently completed by the Payson Area Food Drive organization to keep the food banks’ shelves from being emptied. This food drive was historic because of the severe economic recession and job losses that affected so many families in the Payson and surrounding areas. It was also historic because of the wide and effective participation of many sections of the community to reach the very high goals of collecting 50,000 pounds of food and $20,000.

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Weather continues to hamper driving in high country

The weather this week made a pronounced return of snow. Accumulations gave us 6 to 12 inches of the white powder depending on what area you looked at in the Heber or Overgaard area.

The best of the best get honored

It’s been a wet, cold winter — and we’re not complaining, but it is time to let some light shine; in fact, let’s make it a spotlight.

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Hooked on the mystery and the awe

Parks, monuments and museums mount an extravaganza of archeological events in March

I sit in the sandstone ruins tucked beneath a Sierra Ancha cliff face as the sun dies, dabbing idly at the drip of blood on my arm. I put my finger to my tongue and taste the iron. It would make good paint — outlive me by 1,000 years — if I had a little prickly pear juice and some nice, crushed hematite.

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Service offers teen direction

Facing an uncertain future after a rocky road through high school led him to few job prospects afterwards, Dugan Eckstein decided to make a change he could be proud of — he enlisted in the U.S. Army.

Plan to cut adult ed upsets GED seekers

Gov. Jan Brewer’s plan to eliminate adult education funding would destroy the plans of roughly 200 Gila County residents studying to take the GED.

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Man rescued from Tonto Creek

A man had to be rescued from Tonto Creek Tuesday afternoon after he drove a Land Rover past barricades and into the rushing creek.

Thursday, February 25

Winter storms are a high cost for ADOT

As a public safety team on the roads day and night, good weather and bad, the Arizona Department of Transportation always has a focus on first keeping motorists safe and traffic moving. But after the recent winter storm pounded most of the state, ADOT will spend more than $4 million to repair critical infrastructure damaged by rain, wind and snow.

New Mexico — The Land of Enchantment

In my early years after graduating university, my first real job was at KOB-TV, Channel 4 in Albuquerque, N.M. I lived there for some four years, learning the television business. Having been raised in Los Angeles, anything in New Mexico seemed different and interesting. On my days off I would take to the highways and explore this enchanted part of America.

Wrinkle-free garment isn’t

I’m all in favor of avoiding harsh chemicals whenever possible, but sometimes stronger methods are called for. For instance: pre-emergent on gravel pathways and the cracks between paving stones.

See projects in 3D with CAD software

Most designers, architects and contractors are now equipped to draw home building and home remodeling plans in three dimensions. Highly sophisticated computer aided drawing “CAD” software is used to show cabinetry, roofs, wallpaper, paint colors, flooring and many other building elements so accurately, with such detail, and in such a realistic way, that the finished drawing is often interoperated by the novice as a fine sketch or even a photograph.

Reiner honored by American Cinema Editors

There is some news beside Oscar.

The Story of Payson, Arizona

Chapter 37: Access To The Outside

The isolation from the “outside world” that Payson had known from its beginnings was being overcome during the first half of the 20th century. Beginning with the construction of Roosevelt Dam in 1903, new ways to access the beautiful and secretive Rim Country were in demand. Throughout

Winslet will star in ‘Mildred Pierce’ for HBO

What’s Kirstie Alley been up to lately? I’ve always been a fan of hers, but haven’t seen her in a while.

‘The Singing Policeman’ in Payson March 5

Daniel Rodriguez will be the guest artist of the Tonto Community Concert Association at 7 p.m., Friday, March 5.

FAT TUESDAY

Delicious day for cooking

A cooking class on Fat Tuesday — the traditional day when the Mardi Gras season ends and Lent begins — is the perfect place to share a lesson about celebrating both cooking and eating.

Fire academy preparing for 2010 fire season training

The eighth annual Arizona Wildfire & Incident Management Academy will take place March 13 through 19 at Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Prescott. The Academy will offer more than 40 classes to prepare firefighters for the 2010 fire season.

Wednesday, February 24

Celebrate Red Cross month at variety show

The Grand Canyon Chapter of the American Red Cross is celebrating Red Cross Month during March. Efforts are focused on raising awareness about preparedness and recruiting new volunteers, as well as blood and financial donors.

Medal of Honor comes with sacrifice, bravery

U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Robert E. O’Malley got his Wikipedia entry the hard way. As a Medal of Honor recipient, O’Malley is credited with singly killing eight Viet Cong then safely evacuating his wounded squad to a helicopter all while being wounded three times.

Payson council loosens water sale rules

New policy that could help neighbors — including Star Valley, Mesa del Caballo

The Payson Town Council has cleared the way for the town to help bail out the water woes of its neighbors — for a price.

Eye education

The Good Samaritan Society Majestic Rim is hosting guest speaker Dr. Troy Ford of Payson Eye Care Center at 4 p.m., Friday, Feb. 26. His topic will be “The Aging Eye.”

Senior Circle provides plenty of fun activities

The Payson Regional Senior Circle offers a variety of programs for its members and membership is very affordable. Members of Senior Circle receive many discounted benefits both nationally and locally.

PHS student raising money for trip to Africa

Payson High School senior Emily Hill is planning to volunteer this summer in Mozambique, Africa through a humanitarian organization called Care for Life.

Culinary students participate in ‘A Taste of Rim’ this week

Payson High School’s culinary arts students will be busy in the coming weeks.

Making a difference with students is important to teacher

I love science. I enjoy my students. It keeps me young. I can really make a difference.

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Students get double dose of science

Although seriously cool, out of this world, things occur in Scott Davidson’s combined math and science class, the class itself is not overly serious.

Our kids matter

Jordan slouches at her desk glimpsing at the elephant-shaped cloud wishing her art instructor will teach her how to paint. Logan listens to the notes spinning around in his head, praying that he will learn to play the saxophone. Pipe dreams for these two or reality ... the voters in Payson will make this choice for them.

Great display of talent

This past Saturday evening we attended the Tonto Community concert and we witnessed a great display of talent by the Payson High School jazz ensemble, or if you wish, band. The music chosen was to impress we senior citizens (aka old folks), which it did. I knew that it was a pitch to support the override. I didn’t hear any sour notes or missed notes and they played without a director except at start and finish.

Support the override

Upon my retirement as superintendent of Chandler Unified School District, my wife and I purchased a home in Whispering Pines, which is served by the Payson Unified School District. I know from my past experience that an override can become an emotional issue with voters residing within the district.

College is good for Payson

So what’s wrong with a college being located here? I don’t get it.

New people needed in Washington

“Fool me once — shame on you. Fool me twice — shame on me.” Too many of us have been fooled time after time by politicians.

Concerns with extension of the school board override

I would like to take this opportunity to express my concerns with the proposed override.

Repainted building looks nice

I recently noticed that Wendy’s hamburger restaurant had repainted their building. It looks wonderful and fits in with our “mountain” town of ponderosa pine. The color is subdued with a nice trim and the roof was painted copper, which is appropriate as Gila County at one time produced 20 percent of the world’s copper.

College would be good for Payson

This is in response to a Feb. 9, opinion regarding the proposed ASU campus. Mayor Evans was accused of “hatching a scheme” to make Payson a college town and the commentary ended by asking “Would you rather have a stable population of retired people, most of whom are pretty well off financially, or a transient population of starving students?”

State needs adult education, GED testing

If K-12 education was meeting the needs of Arizona’s citizenry, would the state have an annual dropout rate of 23,000, as stated recently in The Arizona Republic?

Payson needs calm, rational approach

This year we have four candidates in the Payson election for three council seats, three incumbents and a former town manager. All have experience in town government and no one seems to be disagreeing on town issues.

Thanks for giving me the bike

To Hike, Bike and Run and the Payson Roundup. Hi, my name is Garrett Lance and I just wanted to thank you guys for choosing me to win the (Free Agent Devil 24) bike. I have already got it all muddy and everything, and it is an awesome bike. I love it so much that I keep it inside.

Town can’t maintain services fixed at 1980 prices

It is that time again, when the citizens of Payson have their opportunity to speak out on how their money is spent by the powers that be at town hall.

Payson won’t take it out on the students

The bad news continues to mount for the schools that will determine the future of this community. Most recently, elementary schools in the Payson School District have been cutting key programs, struggling to cope with reductions in state funding.

Community Almanac

The Star Valley General Plan Committee is holding a meeting on Tuesday, Feb. 23, at 6 p.m. to go over any last-minute changes to the general plan before it is submitted to the Planning and Zoning Commission. Peter Armenta, community development director with the Central Arizona Association of Governments, announced that the meeting agenda includes introductions, plan review and then review of changes that still need to be made.

Pine-Strawberry School hoping state cuts miss them

Scrapping pre-school and reorganizing middle school arose as two possible options Monday night as the Pine Strawberry School Board explored ways to cut costs.

Elementary schools grapple with fewer resources

To avoid having 30-plus students in fourth-grade classrooms at Payson Elementary School this year, Principal Will Dunman had to disband two popular discipline programs that focused on teaching kids appropriate behaviors.

FBI seeks clues to identity of ‘High Country Bandits’

A duo the FBI once thought was responsible for only Arizona bank robberies is now believed to have committed four out-of-state robberies as well as eight in-state.

Governor: Budget woes won’t crash state’s centennial

A state’s 100th birthday only happens once, and the current budget crisis shouldn’t stop Arizona from ringing it in right, Gov. Jan Brewer said Wednesday.

Main St. raffle going strong

Payson Main Street Guild members have drawn winners for the first of three Pot O’ Gold raffles. The fund-raiser is being held to help keep Tonto Natural Bridge operating. The next drawing will be March 5.

State of the town impacts property values throughout

You have to love old sayings because in most of them there is often a grain of truth.

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What once was old is new again at furniture store on Main Street

After searching throughout Northern Arizona for the right place to open his first used furniture store, Ken Maxfield settled on Payson’s Main Street for its charm and reasonable rent.

Mule deer seminar set at Mountain Bible

The second of the inaugural “Shoot for the Heart” seminars hosted by Mountain Bible Church is expected to yield unique perspectives about Rocky Mountain Mule Deer and their declining numbers.

Broken promise could lead to broken bones

Only those with their heads plunged deep in the sand and outfitted with oversized blinders would not realize there is a growing under swell of grumbling about the school board’s decision last spring to not install Fieldturf artificial playing surfaces on the three high school sports fields.

Winslow scrimmage launches softball season

The best that can be said about the onset of the 2010 softball season, which begins Feb. 25 in a controlled scrimmage against Winslow, is that it will help erase some of the sting of last season when the Lady Longhorns failed to make the 16-team state tournament.

Lady Horn looking for challenge to close prep career

Maddie Nossek admits she is among the many Payson High School upperclassmen now pondering, “I was just a freshman, I blinked, and I’m a senior.”

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Scholarship help for aspiring Little Leaguers

Longtime Little League Vice President Slade Gibson knew baseball-softball season had arrived almost the minute he showed up Saturday morning at Rumsey Park.

Monday, February 22

New camping and campfire regulations for Fossil Creek

After putting out more than 200 abandoned campfires and picking up trash and human waste from visitors last summer, the U.S. Forest Service is implementing stronger regulations at Fossil Creek just in time for spring break.

Man shoots himself in campground

The Gila County Sheriff’s Office says an out of town camper shoot himself Friday night in a campground north of Payson.

Lake Mary Road reopened

The Coconino County Public Works Department removed the detour on Lake Mary Road, also known as Forest Highway 3, Friday.

Lake Mary Road reopened

The Coconino County Public Works Department removed the detour on Lake Mary Road, also known as Forest Highway 3, Friday.

Saturday, February 20

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Democratic Senate hopeful counterpunches Sen. McCain

An undeclared contender for the U.S. Senate nomination on the Democratic side hit Payson Friday and Saturday to counterpunch incumbent Sen. John McCain, offering a vigorous, challenging analysis of the national ills at his very first town hall.

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McCain charms Payson crowd

Incumbent senator brings re-election campaign to Rim Country with a three-hour town hall focusing on deficits and health care

U.S. Senator John McCain fervently called for a federal balanced budget amendment as he blasted deficit spending and the bank rescue bill he once voted to approve all while fielding nearly three hours of friendly questions from about 500 people crowded into the Payson High School auditorium Saturday morning.

Friday, February 19

Community Almanac

Certified teacher Trina Gunzel will again be teaching Spanish Classes for students.

Many talented people up in Christopher Creek

One of the things I continue to be impressed by is the amount of artists and talent up here in Christopher Creek. I am finding that there are more than just a couple great amazing writers, artists and crafts people. It is really pretty amazing!

Handymen, helpers keep old shelter running

It’s been a pretty challenging winter so far here at HSCAZ. We’ve been dealt a few powerful blows from Mother Nature, as well as a few nasty rounds of health issues with our puppies and kittens.

Rim Country wins new tools to lure job-producing firms

Region nearly lost out on reviving Enterprise Zones to provide tax breaks to manufacturing firms

In the nick of time, the state has approved an Enterprise Zone that could help lure major new businesses to Rim Country — perhaps even manufacturers which could erase the area’s economic boom/bust cycles.

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Girls basketball wraps up

With the Lady Longhorn basketball campaign at an end, most players are turning their attention to the spring sports of softball and track and field.

Mourning loss of ‘father of Sun Devil sports’

Arizona State University and the entire state is morning the loss of teaching and coaching legend and World War II hero Bill Kajikawa.

Spring-like weather stirs gobblers

Even though it is only mid-February, I would like to think that spring is in the air with this past week’s warmup. If you have lived in the Rim Country for any length of time, this kind of balmy weather may just be an interlude before the next winter blast.

Prospects brighten for Tonto Bridge

Payson has made progress in talks with Arizona State Parks in its efforts to work out a deal to keep Tonto Natural Bridge State Park open, despite the state’s growing budget woes.

Become familiar with the various wealth-transfer strategies

To retire comfortably, you need to save and invest regularly.

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Beloved Small Cafe reopens its doors

After being closed nearly seven months, the Small Cafe reopens under new owner and slightly different name

It’s known for its delectable breakfasts and lunches as well as cozy country feel. After being open umpteen years, the Small Cafe was a Rim Country institution for good food. When the cafe closed in July, stomachs around the Rim Country grumbled in sorrow.

The census is coming to town between March 1 and April 2

The 2010 census is under way and Rim Country residents can soon expect to receive a letter from the director of the U.S. Census Bureau explaining the process. The letter explains that census takers will be coming to homes to deliver a form to be filled out and mailed back.

Baseball Preview: Returning letter-winners give a coach solid nucleus

When we last saw the Longhorn baseball team, it was the spring of 2009 and PHS had just been eliminated from the 3A state tournament by a second-round 11-6 loss to the Chino Valley Cougars.

Anderson not miffed, recruits Arizona

Dakota State University football coach Josh Anderson continues to recruit in Arizona, adding four of the state’s prep players — including Payson High’s Logan Garner — to the Trojans’ 2010 roster.

Rollover injures two

Two people were seriously injured Wednesday afternoon in a rollover on Highway 87 near Sunflower and a motorcyclist escaped injury in a separate incident farther down the highway.

Who says dreams can’t come true? Part II

Last week I was talking about how much I always wanted to own a microscope, knowing the chances of it were very slim. A decent one cost a year’s pay. Let me put that in perspective for you.

College campus would be good for Payson

The recent letters to the editor regarding the proposed ASU campus in Payson are baseless at best.

Pay as you go

I noticed that in the “Letters to the Editor” on Tuesday, Feb. 9, a gentleman, in his “golden years,” commented that he would not vote for the school override because he had already raised his children, and had none in Arizona.

Give our children the best education possible

This is in reference to David L. Tovar’s letter:

Public needs to take more interest in the woods

I found the timber wars article disturbing.

Evans endorses McCain as candidates converge

Payson Mayor Kenny Evans this week joined 30 other Arizona mayors in endorsing Arizona Senator John McCain, who faces a challenge in the Republican primary from former Phoenix Congressman J.D. Hayworth.

Don’t cut law enforcement or firefighter positions

This letter is to all town, city and state managers, governors, and lawmakers in our United States of America. Never cut law enforcement and firemen census positions from your budgets. In the USA a national law should be passed by our Congress to make budget census for all police and fire department officers a priority, never to be adjusted downward.

Vote for Su Connell

I have gotten to know Su Connell over the last few years. She is an amazing woman. She seems to be everywhere all the time. If someone asks her to make an appearance, take a leadership role or help with some project, Su does it without hesitation.

Vote yes for the school override

Most senior and middle-aged citizens (with private school graduates the exception) are the lucky beneficiaries of a public education. Shouldn’t we vote for the school override for today’s students, so we hold up our end of the bargain? It’s called paying it forward and to deny this current student body the opportunity we had is negligent, selfish and just plain wrong. For the most part we had reasonably sized classes, nurses, libraries, etc. Don’t our students nowadays deserve the same?

Big Brothers Big Sisters thanks community for support

I am writing on behalf of the staff and board of Big Brothers Big Sisters in Payson to thank this community for its support of our mentoring programs.

Support the school override

Mr. Tovar’s reasons for not supporting the school override sadden me.

Welcome to North Mexico

Think back to 1987, when we voted to have English as our official language. Though the majority of citizens were in favor of this amendment, we have more voting material, etc. printed in Spanish than ever before.

Odd votes, dark plots

You know why peace is symbolized by a white dove? So darn fragile — so easy to wring the little bird’s neck, leaving you with a sad flutter of feathers. Don’t take our word for it — just read the latest report out of the Star Valley Town Council, where a spasm of second thoughts underscores how easy it would be to destroy the fragile truce in the Rim Country water wars.

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Hayworth delivers no surprises in speech

GOP senate candidate pummels McCain’s record at meeting

Former Congressman and radio host J.D. Hayworth started his march on Sen. John McCain in Payson this week to attack the incumbent’s right flank at a gathering of Republican activists.

Storm caused structural damage at church

The residents of Tonto Village are still experiencing the consequences of the big snow and rainstorm from a few weeks ago. There is still a lot of snow that is melting making running water everywhere, including a never-ending supply of mud that sticks to shoes, and of course, into the house.

Prescribed Burning - Stehr Lake

Red Rock Ranger District fire management crews are conducting a prescribed burn today, Feb. 19 in the area of Stehr Lake and FR 502, which is located to the west of Fossil Creek, north of the Verde River and northeast of the old Childs powerplant.

Decision to hire firm gets SV review

Council concerned with future water, open meeting issues

After declaring the supposed water wars over between Star Valley and Payson, a civil war of sorts broke out at Tuesday’s Star Valley Council meeting.

Gila college shortchanged in state tax aid

Eastern Arizona College gets 9 times as much state money per student as Gila Community College

Arizona’s bizarre community college laws bar Gila County from operating its own school, while providing other rural districts with up to nearly nine times as much money per student.

Computer scam du jour: 2010 census fraud

You’ve seen the commercials — a movie star or famous athlete reminding you to participate in the 2010 census. “Be counted,” they say. Eventually, census workers will work to count every person living in the United States. But just like everything else, the bad guys have taken this as an opportunity to scam you out of your money or personal identity. If we’re not careful, we will indeed be counted — counted among those who have been scammed.

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Nominate outstanding volunteers

Do you know of an individual in Pine or Strawberry who has made an outstanding contribution to the community in 2009? Why not honor them publicly?

Singer’s life reflected in his songs

Have you had a chance to stop in Bob’s Western Wear yet? It’s the new western clothing store on the Beeline Highway, between the Dairy Queen and Prudential.

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Effects of big snowstorm still being felt

The snow continues to melt slowly in the Heber Overgaard area in these warming mid-day afternoons and then freeze again at night. Although there are areas that are clear, many areas are still muddy that are not obviously soft by just looking. The creeks are running and many creek beds are saturated deep into the rock and sand. Even with four-wheel drive, many roads routing into to these areas remain challenging and possibly treacherous.

Payson council approves roundabout

Financial terms convince councilors to contribute $400,000 in gas tax money for a $1.7-million Highway 87/Airport Road roundabout

The Payson Town Council Thursday swallowed hard, shook their collective heads, then approved spending $400,000 in gas tax money to pay the town’s share of a roundabout at the intersection of Highway 87 and Airport Road.

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Celebrate cooking and eating

A cooking class on Fat Tuesday — the traditional day when the Mardi Gras season ends and Lent begins — is the perfect place to share a lesson about celebrating both cooking and eating.

Saving lives one disaster at a time

The smell of death permeates the rubble. He can’t escape it, but the surrounding heartbreak pulls in Payson resident Randy Roberson. He needs to help.

Medal of honor recipient visits town

Rim Country residents were treated to a rare treat Thursday afternoon from a Medal of Honor recipient.

Thursday, February 18

SV council gets heated over contract

After declaring the supposed water wars over between Star Valley and Payson, a civil war of sorts broke out at Tuesday’s Star Valley Council meeting.

Rollover injures two Wednesday

Two people were seriously injured Wednesday afternoon in a rollover on Highway 87 near Sunflower.

Drop your brush off this weekend free

This weekend the Regional Payson Area Project for a Fire Wise Rim Country (RPAP) will be staffing free brush drop-off points at the following locations, weather permitting.

Wednesday, February 17

One lane Beeline closes after accident

Officers warn of congestion

All about Alaska - PART 1

The Iditarod, Iditarod Sweep Tour, and Ice Road Trucker Tour

The Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race started with a dream by Joe Redington Sr., known as the Father of the Iditarod, to commemorate the role played by sled dogs in Alaska’s history and culture. Throughout the history of the native people of Alaska, sled dogs have served as the only viable means of transportation in a frozen wilderness.

Arizona State Archives and Department of Mines

In Payson the big story when it comes to the state budget is the potential closing of the Tonto Natural Bridge, but for historians and genealogists the threat to history research centers like the state archives has been a point of concern. Recently I did a little research at the Arizona State Archives and at the Arizona Department of Mining and Mineral Resources. Here’s a sense of what is happening there.

Touching the Past

Archaeology group recovers pieces of past in area digs

They work with some of the oldest elements of the Rim Country. But the organization is one of the newer groups in the area, in spite of celebrating its 24th anniversary at its meeting Feb. 20.

Taste of Rim Country

Tickets for the annual Taste of Rim Country event to benefit the Payson Public Library are a hot item. With the event only a little more than two weeks away, time is growing short to get your entry into the culinary celebration. Only 250 tickets will be sold.

Tahiti – for beauty, relaxation and romance

The Polynesian people have populated the South Pacific islands for almost 2,000 years. On these islands, known as French Polynesia, and more properly called Tahiti or the Society Islands, the Polynesian people have created island paradises that are hard to equal anywhere else in the world.

Garage shelves make space

If you’re like most Americans, one of your concerns may be lack of storage space. For added room, sometimes all you need to do is more fully utilize what you already have.

Apples and Pork A winning combination

Crisp, juicy apples are one of this country’s favorite fruits. Fresh and whole, sliced up with dips or baked into treats — there are hundreds of ways to enjoy a good apple. And there are a dizzying number of varieties to choose from.

THE GRUMPY GARDENER

A bouquet of random thoughts

My garden might never ever look good, but the indoor plants are going gangbusters. One of my orchids is in bloom, another has a new flower stem developing, and all of the African violets have bloomed. Even the broad-leafed (angelsomethingorother) plant has a new leaf since I moved it to a sunnier place.

Census workers coming to town

The 2010 census is underway and Rim Country residents can soon expect to receive a letter from the director of the U.S. Census Bureau advising them that a census taker will be coming to homes to deliver a census form to be filled out and mailed back.

Tuesday, February 16

Home Rule rejection would spur devastation

The Blue Ridge pipeline will die. So too an ASU campus in Payson. Mayor Kenny Evans will step aside.

Bleak financial outlook forces cuts, layoff at Hellsgate FD

Facing a massive $365,000 hole in its budget next year, the Hellsgate Fire Department is bracing for major changes in how it provides services to residents in its 40-square-mile district.

Critics fear fire station could break the budget

Cost of staffing Payson’s third fire station spurs questions and Hellsgate Fire Department lurches toward financial crisis

Persistent concerns about the cost of staffing a third Payson fire station have roiled candidate forms, but generated no rifts between the four candidates.

Food bank drive surpasses goal

Although it came down to the wire and a few last-minute donations during Super Bowl weekend, the Payson Area Food Drive topped its 50,000-pound goal — cruising through the finish line with at least an extra 1,000 pounds of food in tow.

Council candidates back college

Challenger Fred Carpenter runs on his resume, but agrees with Vice Mayor Mike Vogel on the issues

Two Payson Town Council candidates offered an impassioned defense of a college campus and the Home Rule exemption from spending limits — but didn’t disagree with one another once during a lively, two-hour candidate’s forum before the Citizen’s Awareness Committee Thursday.

Community Almanac

Community Almanac

Schools deserve your support

So it’s deep winter and the big lake has a thin, frail crust of ice. You spot a commotion just ahead. A child has fallen through the ice. She’s thrashing about, lunging toward shore — but unable to get clear of the ice.

Sycamore Lane residents thank everyone for help

The residents of lower Sycamore Lane here in Tonto Basin wish to extend our sincerest gratitude and appreciation for (Gila County Supervisor Michael Pastor’s) assistance in alleviating our threat.

Payson’s fate in voters’ hands

Nurture it. Or kill it.

School override necessary for future

We are retirees, living on a fixed income, and have to be concerned with every penny that we spend. Times are tough for us and everyone else. We understand that completely.

Not an act of God, just official stupidity

Having been involved in the incident you mentioned in 1993, I have a few thoughts.

Vote yes on override, it is the right thing to do

My wife and I are recently retired teachers from Houston; we live on fixed incomes, have raised and educated our children (with the help of other taxpayers), and are very aware that there is a recession.

More trees than story says

In article dated 2 Feb. states, “Only about 40,000 big trees greater than 16 inches in diameter remain [on the four national forests in northern Arizona].”

Walk a mile in someone else’s shoes first

I read with concern your description of residents of Tonto Basin trying to get to their homes on the East side, as if they were just a bunch of stupid knuckle-dragging backwoodsmen looking for a thrill, lacking the common sense to save their own lives.

Re-Store participates in Disney program

I read the comment from Leanne Campbell Feb. 9 concerning the “Give A Day, Get A Day” volunteer program sponsored by Disney.

Community must support the children

Why must the village support our children? Because without their support and input into the socialist security system that provides your fixed income, you will starve. The fact that you contributed during your children’s education is laudable, however, many other childless people paid in also.

Help state legislators sort out what’s essential

It cost Arizona $143,000 per year for each juvenile held in a detention center. At a meeting I recently attended it was pointed out that the state of Washington had adopted the following approach to that problem.

Support Ed Blair

Several years ago I met Ed Blair at a polling place, although I don’t remember which election it was. Ed was a very outreaching and charismatic person, and I did not know at that time he was a Democrat.

Schools threatened by economic conditions

I am a retired senior who has lived in Payson since 1997. Like many of you, I keep busy in a myriad of endeavors that escaped me during a career and raising a family. One such endeavor has been substitute teaching at Payson High School since 2001. I entered that door quite by accident, on a dare from a friend. One of my life’s most rewarding adventures opened up to me on my first day as a sub.

Thanks to Hellsgate for their help

I read David Lloyd’s letter mentioning the fine performance of Hellsgate during the last heavy snow. He’s certainly right. They cost a fair amount but Hatch and his crew did a medical call in Bear Flat at a time I have no idea how they got here. Later I know a family was fine but frightened because they were snowed in and as soon as he could, the chief busted through and took them out.

Pine seniors plan benefit for man hurt in fall

I recently heard someone offering pussy willows for sale. I was immediately transported back in time to my childhood. One of my favorite memories is of walking with my mother and sister on an early spring day to Grandma’s house. The road was muddy and rutted and passed by a small stream rushing with melted snow-water. Along its bank was a pussy willow bush (or is it a tree?) with its boughs popping with soft, silvery buds. “Oh, spring is really here,” my mother would exclaim as we carefully broke off a few branches.

Ballroom dance class a big draw for Senior Circle

The ballroom dance classes are one of the most popular programs at the Senior Circle. More than 20 couples and singles are attending the class on Thursdays from 3 p.m. to 4 p.m. The instructor, Dee Force, teaches ballroom, Latin and basic dance form. Dee has been dancing since she was 10. Ballroom dance participants can also be found “floating” around the floor on Friday nights from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. at Tiny’s.

Search for new Gila County manager started

The county’s 120-day hiring freeze on filling vacant positions won’t be lifted, even to hire a new county manager, supervisors decided recently.

Federal stimulus money goes to buy already scheduled items

An influx of $193,000 in federal stimulus funding will help the county complete energy efficiency projects that Public Works Director Steve Stratton said were already on the to-do list.

Solar power may be the future of Pine Strawberry Elementary

The Pine Strawberry Elementary School could be powered solely by the sun after November.

Council faces decision on roundabout plan

A sometimes-controversial roundabout traffic circle at the busy intersection of Highway 87 and Airport Road will take a key step forward on Thursday if the Payson Town Council approves a deal with the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT).

Surprise finish at State for Longhorn wrestlers

Armed with a determined resolve that usually buoys the toughest of underdogs, the Payson Longhorns cross faced, flanked and “back doored” their way to a silver medal showing in the Class 3A State championships.

Youth wrestling camp extends registration

Now that the 2010 state high school wrestling tournament has wrapped up, and plans for a team tournament championship have been scrapped, Payson High coaches, including Joseph Harris — also town recreation coordinator — are turning their attention toward the upcoming Little Longhorn Wrestling camp.

East regional winners on to state

Their work done at the regionals in Payson, teams from the 3A East are now meeting on the bigger stage of the state championships.

Fishing report

Fishing News Alamo - Lots of stained water and some debris. Fishing has been slow to dead, but with some good weather, that should change soon. By the end of this month, Alamo should be on fire.

Commercial real estate 101: what you need to know before investing

The business of commercial real estate, particularly in metropolitan areas is a completely different world than residential real estate.

Get cooking at the Red Elephant Bakery school

If you have ever aspired to make your own desserts or present your food like a professional, a local bakery is offering cooking edification.

Rim officials push job creation in mines, forest thinning plans

Ag secretary’s visit highlights effort to create jobs with private funds and public partnerships

The recent whirlwind Rim Country tour by U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack boosted prospects for several key job-creating efforts in Rim Country, where unemployment remains stubbornly high, say officials.

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SV neighbors ban together to clean up roads

With culverts clogged and roads covered in dirt following a thrash of winter storms, the residents of Star Valley took matters into their own hands last weekend and organized a volunteer clean up.

Monday, February 15

Wrestlers take second at state

Surprising almost all, the Longhorn wrestling team grappled its way to a second place finish in the 2010 AIA Class 3A State Tournament held Feb. 12 and 13 at Tim’s Toyota Center in Prescott Valley.

Friday, February 12

Proposed four-day school week

I would like to propose a four-day school week in the Payson school district. This type of schedule would have positive effects on the school district’s budget.

Taking one step toward nuclear power ... but two steps back

United States energy policy shouldn’t make it more expensive for American families to heat their homes or drive to work and school. Some lawmakers, however, advocate policies — like “cap-and-trade” — that would have dramatic, harmful effects on family budgets.

More federal spending is not the answer

I am always proud to represent a district where folks know the value of a hard day’s work. In Greater Arizona, we all learn from a young age that you have to earn every opportunity you get, and that’s the lesson we teach to our kids. Even during one of the worst economic downturns in decades, people don’t ask me for handouts or for the government to take care of everything. They want to know what I am doing to help them provide for themselves and their families.

Tough times pose tough tests for all

Last month, when the Payson Town Council furloughed town workers and imposed $1 million in fresh cuts, we hoped they were overreacting.

Two dogs stolen from Humane Society

All it took was a pair of wire cutters and thieves made off with two dogs this weekend from the Humane Society of Central Arizona’s animal shelter.

Pull out the fishing rods to ready for season

The fall and winter hunting seasons are now history with most outdoorsmen storing their bows and rifles until next August.

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Eight Horn wrestlers going to state

Armed with eight qualifiers, including the East Region’s outstanding wrestler in the upper weight divisions, the Payson Longhorns travel today, Feb. 12, to Prescott Valley for the two-day Class 3A State Championship Tournament.

Tribe writes out checks to Payson, SV

The towns of Payson and Star Valley got a boost in their bottom line last week when the Tonto Apache Tribe gave each town a check.

Sanitary board sidesteps decisions

With a board member missing from their Thursday meeting, the Northern Gila County Sanitary District could not come to a decision on whether or not it should participate with a local business group interested in starting an open dialogue on business development needs.

SV business burglarized

Since the Gila County Sheriff’s Office took over patrol in the Star Valley area in July from the Payson Police Department, deputies have kept occupied with a high number of vehicles versus elk collisions, thefts, burglaries and tagging.

Residents OK joining sanitary district

Airline, Luke Drive property owners say ‘yes’ to becoming part of district

Although there were fears it wouldn’t pass due to cost concerns, it took less than a year for Airline and Luke Drive residents to collect enough ‘yes’ votes to join the sewer district.

Payson’s sales tax drops while state’s rises

Arizona sales tax receipts jumped 8 percent in December, but Payson’s dropped by 14 percent

Payson’s tax revenues swooned in December, despite a rise in sales tax figures statewide.

Keep pets current on shots to avoid quarantine

It seems that with all the bad weather, a few of the javelina herds have been displaced. In the last three weeks, we have seen two different dogs that have tangled with a herd. In both of the cases we saw, the incidents were right in the front yards of their homes.

Music lovers can enjoy an embarrassment of riches for Valentine’s

For those who love music, the Rim Country is the place to be for Valentine’s weekend. There is an embarrassment of riches here, with five concerts planned. At Gila Community College’s Payson campus there will be a chamber music concert; the Tonto Community Concert Association is presenting a review of music memories from Hollywood; jazz is heating up old Main; and rock ’n’ roll fans can see tributes to Fleetwood Mac and Heart at the Mazatzal Casino.

Residents approve joining sanitary district

The Northern Gila County Genealogical Society is now accepting donations for its annual Benefit Yard Sale, to be held April 23 and 24.

Farmers Market returns at new location

Old and new vendors expected at Highway 260 location

The Payson Farmers Market will be a lot harder to miss this year with its new location in the parking lot in front of Legacy Furniture near the intersection of Highway 260 and Beeline Highway.

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Pony Express rides through CC

Well, the See Canyon story is not over, it appears. I’ve been given a whole bunch of new information by Jayne Peace Pyle, a local writer. She has done a ton of work regarding this particular story.

Thanks to county maintenance crew for storm cleanup

What a great Super Bowl game! No matter who you rooted for, you must admit that it was exciting, and the commercials made it worth the watching. Wasn’t Betty White terrific? Abe Vegoda is 89 years old and he was funny! The Snickers commercial was my favorite. The game was the most-watched television program of all time.

Silent Auction and Bake Sale planned for Feb. 27

A couple weeks ago I wrote about Scott Fredrick’s hospital stay and the medical expenses that have accrued as a result. I am pleased to follow up with a couple more ways you can help.

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Columnist shares news from Heber Overgaard

With the snow receding more every day, people are tackling the job of removing trees and branches from their yards. “I enjoy going out and cutting up these limbs and trees,” said Dave Cook, who is the vice president of the Chamber of Commerce.

Win a sweet deal if you know trivia answer

Last Thursday morning, as I was on my usual volunteer shift at the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce, Lauree Moffett, general manager of Kohl’s Ranch, strolled in and announced, “Have I got a sweetheart of a deal for you!”

People have endured, now it is time for Congress to feel the pain

Mr. President, at one time, you said we all have to share the pain of the worst recession (the 1930s being a depression) in our country’s history. “We the people” have endured the cost of the cash for clunkers program.

Sweeten this Valentine’s Day with financial gifts of bonds, stocks and cash

You could give flowers. You could give candy. You could give jewelry, a watch or a gift certificate.

Joint PHS varsity, JV spirit line brings home state silver medal

Some of Payson High’s sports teams have had their share of struggles in the 2009-2010 school year. But one unheralded team brought home a state silver medal last month. And it did so in its first venture into a statewide competition.

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Arpaio scorns critics

Maricopa County inmates will soon ride their exercise bikes to power television sets, America’s toughest Sheriff Joe Arpaio told a packed house at Tiny’s Restaurant Thursday.

Native Air donates $15,000 to Gracie Lee Haught Memorial Fund

Native Air recently donated $15,000 to the Payson-based Gracie Lee Haught Children’s Memorial Fund under its Flight for a Cause fund-raising program.

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Weather watcher

How fast is the wind blowing?

Watching the snow melt isn’t a particularly popular pastime, but one Payson weather aficionado happens to indulge himself occasionally.

Who says dreams can’t come true?

One of my earliest memories is the day my oldest brother Bill let me have a look through a little microscope he’d just gotten from somewhere. From that moment on, I wanted one.

Blair is the best choice

Ed Blair is your best choice for town council. I listened to Ed at the recent (Citizens Awareness Committee) meeting. His personal involvement in the issues and responsive action to voter concerns are excellent examples of how a council person should represent the people. Ed had a good grasp of the dollars and challenges of our current budget crisis.

PUSD override, another viewpoint

A recent contributor to Mail Call proclaimed that the override proposed by the Payson Unified School District should be passed by voters to promote economic activity in Payson.

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Horns lose heartbreakers

The first round of regional playoffs Feb. 9 saw both Longhorn teams lose heartbreakers. The girls lost to Blue Ridge by one, 33-34, and the boys lost to Alchesay 57-62.

Thursday, February 11

Two dogs stolen from shelter

All it took was a pair of bolt cutters and thieves got off with two dogs this weekend from the Humane Society of Central Arizona.

Hayworth in Payson

Former Congressman J.D. Hayworth will make an appearance in Payson at 10 a.m., Wednesday, Feb. 17 at Tiny’s Family Restaurant, 600 E. Hwy. 260. A no-host breakfast will be held at 9 a.m., with Hayworth appearing at 10 a.m.

Wednesday, February 10

Get ready to garden

It’s fruit tree pruning season and the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Yavapai County is offering three free deciduous fruit tree pruning demonstrations conducted by Extension Agent, Jeff Schalau. Come and learn why, when, and how to prune your backyard fruit trees. Demonstrations will cover apples, pears, plums, peaches, nectarines, cherries, and more. Fertilization, irrigation and fruit thinning will also be discussed.

Getting things straight with levels

Romans built the Coliseum, Greeks the Pantheon, Egyptians the Pyramids. And, all this was accomplished without the help of modern tools or construction equipment. Granted, construction projects were measured in generations rather than months or years, but the quality of workmanship was impeccable ñ and accurate.

Forest Rangers Protected Payson

The Story of Payson, Arizona -Chapter 36

A close relationship between forest rangers and the people of Payson existed from March of 1907 when the Tonto National Forest was established. The ranger’s station and house, along with a barn for horses and mules, were the center for the Payson Administrative District, and the first ranger assigned here was Fletcher Beard, a cowboy turned forest ranger.

Macular degeneration and cataract surgery

Is it possible to get wet macular degeneration from a scratch on the left eye during cataract surgery, or could it have been a cyst that caused wet macular degeneration?

Have a Valentine dessert & coffee party

Let’s face it, just as weddings are all about the bride, Valentine’s Day is another day that’s really for the girls. If it were banished from the calendar forever, most guys would do a little victory dance on some imaginary football field.

Mexico — Cha, cha, cha

Many folks will be enjoying a three-day weekend for President’s Day and next month area schools dismiss for spring break, so perhaps now is the time to consider a visit to Mexico. Recently Mexico has suffered from poor publicity due to the H1N1 flu outbreak, as well as the drug problems, along with the general downturn in the U.S. economy.

Music lovers can celebrate Valentine’s weekend

Valentine’s weekend in the Rim Country is bringing an embarrassment of riches for music lovers. There are three concerts planned. At Gila Community College’s Payson campus there will be a chamber music concert; the Tonto Community Concert Association is presenting a review of music memories from Hollywood; and jazz is heating up old Main.

John McCain holding Payson town hall

Senator John McCain is hosting a Town Hall forum beginning at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 20 in the Payson High School auditorium.

Tuesday, February 9

Rewards offered for buying autos locally

On the heels of a successful rebate program to encourage residents to buy locally, the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce and Chapman Auto Center are teaming up again to offer another incentive to buyers.

School Briefs

Payson High School student Lucy Schouten has been named a National Merit Scholar finalist. The competitive program aims to identify and honor academically talented U.S. high school students. Payson High School Principal Roy Sandoval says the highly competitive recognition is a huge honor. Schouten faces one more cut before she is potentially named a merit scholar.

Landfill to accept appliances, metal items on ‘free day,’ Feb. 27

The Buckhead Mesa Landfill will coordinate an old appliance “free day” from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 27.

Variety show to help Red Cross provide services

While the world is rallying support and donations for earthquake victims in Haiti, residents in our own back yard are in need of help and support after a winter storm ripped through their homes just a few weeks ago.

Art classes at Senior Center

Artist Helen Tennent is teaching a free art class at the Payson Senior Center, 514 W. Main St.

Heart disease topic at luncheon

Holly Crump, director of the Arizona Rural Women’s Health network, will facilitate a discussion at the next Senior Circle Lunch and Learn Series on Wednesday, Feb. 10. The event is at 11 a.m. and a light lunch will be served.

Be careful when attending real estate auctions, you may end up with a lemon

You may recall a television show from the 1980s called “Hill Street Blues.”

Scoops doles out the fun

After an incredibly successful first year of operation in its Swiss Village location, Scoops has moved to the south end of town and expanded to offer a full espresso bar and coffee house in addition to adding eight Dreyer’s flavors to their ice cream menu.

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Students’ soup kitchen profits help feed others

It’s not often you can help the hungry while filling your belly.

Getting Congress to compromise

This solution might be a little “tongue in cheek,” but I bet it would work!

Shame on Christopher-Kohl’s Fire Department

The winter storm that dumped 4-plus feet of snow on the Christopher Creek area during the week of Jan. 18 through Jan. 23 is the largest storm I can remember in the past 14 years.

Against making Payson a college town

I would like to address this letter to the Honorable Mayor Evans. While you were hatching this scheme to make Payson a college town, did you check with anyone who lives here. Most people that I have spoken with came to Payson for its small town feel and atmosphere.

Vote for school override

I urge people to vote in favor of the 10 percent (School) Maintenance & Operation Budget Override.

Get a free Disney pass?

I was told about a program that you could volunteer for and receive a free one day Disney pass. When I went online to find the closest program to volunteer for there were no programs in Payson. Plenty in the Valley and Prescott.

Great day for Rim Country

Next thing you know, we’ll all have rubber duckies.

Community Almanac

To really give a gift from the heart this Valentine’s Day, donate blood. It’s a simple act that can save lives. Join others at the Pine Strawberry Community Blood Drive from 9:30 a.m. to 6 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 9 at First Baptist Church of Pine, 4039 N. Highway 87. A blood drive will also be held in Payson from 8:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Friday, Feb. 12 at the old gym at Payson High School.

No speed limit boost for parkway despite traffic study

The Payson Town Council last week refused to boost the speed limit on South Rim Club Parkway to 35 miles an hour, spurning resident requests and the town’s own traffic study.

Payson approves Blue Ridge contract

Council acts despite fears rejection of Home Rule will turn off the spigot on money for the pipeline

The Payson Town Council crossed its fingers, cast one quick worried look over its shoulder at voters and then quietly approved a key engineering contract for the Blue Ridge Reservoir pipeline.

Tai Chi, Qigong for seniors

Tai Chi and Qigong classes are offered from 9 to 10 a.m. Saturdays at the Rim Country Health and Retirement Community, 807 W. Longhorn Road. This program is especially designed for seniors 50 years or older, but is beneficial for all ages.

Interview with a recovering alcoholic and drug addict

(The following interview is with Chris Magana, a recovering alcoholic and drug addict. Chris is currently the manager of the Community Bridges facilities in Globe and Payson. His story is compelling and poignant. The Gila County Meth Coalition is fortunate he does personal appearances at schools around the county. When he speaks, students listen. He is willing to share his life story in hopes just one person will get the help they need or say no to drug and alcohol abuse.)

Passing Home Rule is important

I truly believe we need to ensure the passing of the Home Rule measure at our next election. Having lived in a state where money did not often get to the rural areas, it was an eye-opener to see a means of having a say in how a portion of our money would be spent. Yes, it is only a small portion of our tax dollars, but it allows our area to keep funding many of the services needed right here in Payson.

Blue Ridge pipeline may carry 4,000 acre-feet

Payson mayor promises to engineer connections for any community making a serious effort to qualify

Payson’s Blue Ridge pipeline will likely end up carrying close to 4,000 acre-feet annually — enough water to resolve century-old legal tangles and perhaps prevent small communities along the pipeline from running out of water as they grow.

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Food hauled over flooded Tonto Creek

Emergency workers use trucks to bring needed supplies, mail to residents

Although the sky was cloudy and gray, Tonto Basin volunteers and homeowners were all smiles Monday — it was supply delivery day.

Relay for Life 2010 kicks off Feb. 19

The American Cancer Society will host a kick-off celebration for the 2010 Payson Relay for Life on Feb. 19, beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Payson First Church of the Nazarene.

Tickets available for NRA dinner and auction

Tickets are now on sale for the Friends of NRA Annual Dinner and Auction, which will be Saturday, Feb. 20 at the Mazatzal Casino.

No lull in parks and recreation opportunities

The winter sports season is winding down, but Payson’s Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department has a slate of classes and activities to keep you busy, no matter your age or interests.

Lady golfers wanted for 2010 season

The Payson Women’s Golf Association Nine Hole Club will begin its 2010 season play on Thursday, April 1 at Payson Golf Course

Muzzle loader rifle shoot Feb. 10-15

Come enjoy a smokin’ saga of living frontier history during the National Muzzle Loader Rifle Association’s Western National Shoot Feb. 10-15 at the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Ben Avery Shooting Facility on the northern edge of Phoenix.

Little League registration continues until tryouts

Registration for the 2010 Little League season will continue until tryouts, which are scheduled for Feb. 20 for softball and Feb. 27 for baseball.

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Longhorn teams fall to Alchesay

Payson High School hosted the Alchesay Falcons Friday, Feb. 5 during Senior Night at Wilson Dome.

Community college wants to offer 4-year degrees

Eastern Arizona College’s move to offer B.A. could create complications for ASU campus in Payson

A bill that would allow Eastern Arizona College (EAC) in Safford to offer four-year degrees could complicate efforts to build a low-cost, four-year ASU campus in Payson.

Limited supply of javelina tags remain

Time is running out to get one of the limited spring javelina tags remaining before the last two hunting seasons close for the year. The hunt permit-tags are available for purchase in person at any of the seven Arizona Game and Fish offices.

Census information notices will be sent out soon

The 10-question census sheet Rim Country residents will receive next month affects everything from how $400 billion in annual federal aid is disbursed to the makeup of county governing boards.

School program tries to help failing students

Three years ago, Payson High School’s fine arts teacher George Conley began informally meeting with students who were failing classes.

Payson OKs talks with SV on water

What war? We’re all friends here.

Against school override

I would like to point out to the Payson Unified School District that we are in a recession. Some of us Paysonites are on a fixed income, or receiving minimum wages, or unemployed. In other words, we are barely making ends meet, especially with the present economic conditions. Employment is hard to come by in Payson, as we are limited in industrial or corporate industry.

Saturday, February 6

Appliance and metal discard event at Buckhead Mesa landfill

The Buckhead Mesa Landfill will coordinate an old appliance “free day” from 8 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday, Feb. 27.

Friday, February 5

Building code overhaul may blunt fire menace

Payson lags behind in wildfire protection, but $300,000 federal grant and code changes may avert ‘disaster’

A $300,000 federal grant and an overhaul of the building codes may soon help ease the dire threat of Payson’s greatest potential disaster — a wildfire sweeping in out of a thickset, fire-prone forest.

The official story of See Canyon

Here is the official story I got on how See Canyon got its name.

Private company will manage Taylor Pool

EVO Swim School will double cost of lessons, but cut public swim price

The Payson council voted unanimously Thursday to save between $32,000 and $64,000 by turning Taylor Pool over to a private company to run this summer. EVO Swim School owner David Tait said the company will offer almost all the classes and pool hours as the town did last summer — including the daily public swim sessions.

‘Stupid motorists’ getting stuck in Tonto Creek

While the water keeps rushing and the ‘do not enter’ signs remain posted, more and more motorists are attempting to cross the flooded Tonto Creek in Tonto Basin.

Community Almanac

The Pine-Strawberry Task Force would like to announce that it will be running the siren tests in both communities on a regular basis again.

Not an act of God, just official stupidity

Back in 1993, a brush fire rushed out of the California chaparral and consumed 400 homes in posh Laguna Beach. The flames tore through thick brush, leaping 50 feet in the air and generating temperatures of 2,000 degrees.

You can’t spend what you don’t have

The president recently announced he would freeze certain types of federal spending in an effort to save approximately $250 billion over the next 10 years. Over that period, deficits are projected to accumulate to $9 trillion. So, with this “spending freeze” in place, we will only spend $8.75 trillion that we don’t have.

School bond is needed

As a recently retired teacher from Payson Unified School District, we would like to encourage the citizens of Payson to support the school bond election by mailing in a yes vote! Our children, the future of Payson, and their deserving, dedicated teachers desperately need your positive support.

President has come to his senses on energy policy

I may not always agree with our president, but after hearing his State of the Union last night, I’m glad to see that he has come to his senses on energy policy.

School board will face tough decisions

It is not surprising that with the economic downturn, we are experiencing financial woes. It is also surprising that the Payson Unified School District will be short because of a budget deficit in our district. But it is surprising that teachers and support staff are likely to be hit.

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Rim player redshirts for Golden Bears

Rim Country basketball fans tuning in last week to either the Arizona State vs. California or Arizona vs. California basketball games to see former Tonto Village Shelby School hoop star Harper Kamp ply his considerable hoop wares for the Golden Bears came away disappointed.

Green Valley Park is a great place

We must respond to the letter in Tuesday’s Roundup complaining about Green Valley Park. Often referred to as “The Crown Jewel of Payson” (and rightfully so, I might add), it is hard to comprehend how someone can call the park “unusable.” We use it at least four times weekly for walks and thoroughly enjoy it. We wholeheartedly thank all the town employees who work so hard to keep it so nice.

Thanks for sponsorship

The Navajo County Sheriff’s Posse would like to thank the following sponsors in Payson for their support of the 52nd ride of the “Hashknife Pony Express.” The major sponsors for the 2010 ride are the Mazatzal Hotel and Casino, Tonto Apache Tribe, Buffalo Bar & Grill and Bob’s Western Wear.

The president’s so-called State of the Union address

There are two kinds of people who still vote and support our fearless leader and his agendas. There are the so-called smart ones and the not so-called smart ones. The so-called smart ones know exactly what his agendas are, socialism.

Payson is in trouble

We were burglarized Jan. 20. The policeman told us this is the biggest problem right now with businesses and residential homes.

During the war, we were one people

I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating. When I was a kid in New York City, you could have looked high and low trying to find someone who thought of himself as Italian-American, German-American, or whatever-American. You’d have had no luck. None at all. We were all just Americans.

Blair, Connell face questions, mostly singing in harmony

Forum for two Payson council candidates touches on Home Rule, college campus, decaying roads

Incumbent Payson Town Council candidates Ed Blair and Su Connell didn’t disagree on a single issue during their first candidates’ forum, but expressed mutual, passionate support for a four-year college in town and voter approval of Home Rule.

Wrestling regionals Saturday at Blue Ridge

Wrestlers from around the 3A East will battle tomorrow, Feb. 6, at Blue Ridge High School for regional honors and the right to move on to the state tournament when it is held Feb. 12 and 13 in Prescott.

The Louisiana alligator as big game

Throughout the United States there is a common thread among outdoorsmen who enjoy the hunting experience — the pursuit of the local game animals. In the extreme southern tier of states, which are east of the Mississippi River, whitetail deer and wild turkeys attract the bulk of the big game hunters.

Longhorns struggle in road trip to St. Johns

Longhorn boys basketball coach Jared Swanson is leaving no doubts he’s unhappy with his team’s play in a 60-55 loss to St. Johns.

Future is now for the Cardinals and Leinart

My buddy Dave, a fellow employee at the Roundup and a genuinely good guy, and I enjoy talking football even though he’s a huge Packers fan and I’m a Cardinals backer.

Parker honored at All-American fest

The legendary coach, who last summer yearned to be the Payson High School’s next football coach, received the prestigious “You Paved the Way” award at the Arizona All-American banquet held Jan. 31 at Mesa Community College.

Lawmaker poised to help ASU, GCC

A bill that would make it possible for Arizona State University to assume management of Gila Community College’s Payson campus should hit the overflowing docket of the Legislature this week.

Smooth balladeer at No. 1 for 10 weeks

I think most subscribers to the Roundup really look forward to reading through the Mail Call section of the newspaper. I know I do.

Star Valley council discusses use of grant funds

The Star Valley council met Tuesday night to discuss improvement opportunities within the town using Community Development Block Grant (CDBG) funds.

Giving new life to old favorites

For 26 years, Tom Kelly has reupholstered the Rim Country; from old chairs to ottomans and even windows, Kelly does it all.

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Helping families survive

Donations to Food Bank help mother and six children

After her husband climbed a communications tower and threatened to commit suicide in April, Michelle Williams-Boal said she is doing all that she can to keep her family of six from poverty with the little income she receives from the state.

Crazy for cooking

Rim woman shares years of kitchen expertise

Star Valley resident Shirley Snyder is one of the contributors to the 2009 Taste of Home cookbook, Freezer Pleasers. A few years ago, she was one of the winners in the Roundup’s recipe contest.

Helping your computer avoid Olympic-sized crashes

The Winter Olympics are about to begin, and we will be treated to two weeks of watching the best athletes in the world perform on the biggest stage.

Now may be the time to make post-recession investment moves

Like a tiresome dinner guest, the recession has long outstayed its welcome. But there are some clear signs that the economy has begun to turn around.

Severe meltdown in Pine, Strawberry

The snow must have the elk reaching near desperation for good food sources. Last week, several of them managed to “break” into the horse barn and finding a large metal garbage can full of chicken feed, they proceeded to assault it. Apparently they were unable to pop the bungeed lid off, so they shoved the whole thing out of the pen, and proceeded to thoroughly smash it before eating every last bit of grain! We found the can battered and flattened underneath the trampoline — the lid and bungee cord nearby.

LDS Payson Stake announces new leadership

More than 700 members of the Payson Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints assembled on Sunday, Jan. 31, for their semi-annual conference to receive counsel from church leaders and to witness the reorganization of stake leadership. Since 2000, J. Fred Hollobaugh has presided over the Payson Stake, which includes wards (or congregations) in Payson, Pine, Tonto Basin, Happy Jack and Christopher Creek.

Village is slowly getting back to normal

Here we go again! There is another round of storms coming this week. We are all hoping that there won’t be so much rain that we flood again! The ground is so saturated, it cannot hold anymore moisture. Snow would be better than rain at this point, it would melt slowly. Keep your fingers crossed.

Fires and furloughs: Fulfilling our mission

The Payson Fire Department, along with all of the various Town of Payson departments, is experiencing changes to operations due to budgetary restrictions. Hopefully the following will answer your questions.

A picture’s worth a thousand words

Once a month, the Humane Society of Central Arizona will present a photos-only

Talks yield glimmers of hope for state parks

Arizona lawmaker introduces bill to fund state parks with surcharge on vehicle registration

Payson this week made progress in its negotiations with the State Parks Board to save Tonto Natural Bridge, slated to shut down in June due to the state budget crisis, according to Mayor Kenny Evans.

Budget cuts worry teachers, administrators

Cuts within the Payson Unified School District have already corresponded into no money to replace decade-old textbooks and fewer teachers with fewer available class sections for students.

Mazatzal Casino’s leadership graduates honored

It was an emotional evening for nine graduates of the Mazatzal Hotel & Casino’s Tribal Professional Development (TriPoD) Program, who were honored Jan. 28 at a banquet.

Longhorns beat Blue Ridge

The Payson High School boys came out ahead of Blue Ridge 53-49 in Thursday night’s game. Leading the team in points were Ever Figueroa with 12 and Cale Novack with 10. Dakota Marshall and Tanner Hintze shared third place honors, scoring 8 points each; Marshall had 10 rebounds and Hintze 6. Chase Walden and Cody Waterman also had six rebounds each. Walden made 6 points and Waterman 5.

Lady Horns fall to Blue Ridge

The Lady Horns lost 48-25 to Blue Ridge in a disappointing game Feb. 4.

Thursday, February 4

SV council discusses grant funds

The Star Valley Council met Tuesday night to discuss possible improvement opportunities within the town using Community Development Block Grant funds.

Prescribed burn in Sedona’s Oak Creek Canyon

Pending favorable weather conditions, fire specialists are planning several pile burns north of Slide Rock and near Encinoso Day Use Area in Oak Creek Canyon.

Get rewarded for buying locally at Chapman Auto

On the heels of a successful rebate program to encourage residents to buy locally, the Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce and Chapman Auto Center are teaming up again to offer another incentive to buyers.

Wednesday, February 3

Getting to know the amish

Many years ago when I was a young television director working my way up the ladder to the big time and living in Indiana, it was suggested by the TV station’s program director that I do a documentary about the Amish. There are counties in Indiana that are heavily populated by the religious group, and little was known about them since they lived their lives primarily with their own population. They were successful farmers mostly, and their lives revolved around that business. I thought this would make a good documentary so agreed to do it.

Great game-time grub

So, the Cardinals aren’t playing in the Super Bowl, still more than likely most folks will watch the game and they will need sustenance. So, here are some great recipes for game-time viewing from The Kitchens of The Food Channel.

The greatest valentine card ever

Recently, when picking up a couple of items from the store, I found myself about to pass the “official Valentine’s Day aisle.”

Furry fandom

Teen uses hobby to give back to the community

Sixteen-year-old Deanna Biesemeyer lives a furry lifestyle. From her hobby, to her business, to her friends, most everything is connected in some way to furry fandom.

Quilters’ cruise was a big success

Last fall, we did a quilters’ cruise to Mexico from San Diego. It was convenient for quilters to drive to San Diego with their sewing machines, which they then carried on the ship. We had two days of classes on the sea days, leaving the days in port free for excursions, shopping, even parasailing! We had 16 cabins with quilters from Pine and Strawberry, Payson, Gisela and Phoenix. Even some husbands went along for the fun. One gentleman’s comment when he first laid eyes on the buffet was, “I thought I’d died and gone to heaven.”

Residents, business owners reach out in support of Tonto Natural Bridge

The Payson Main Street Guild members are planning a series of fund-raising events in an effort to help keep Tonto Natural Bridge operating.

History in progress?

The storm that recently hit the state surely made an impact. Outside of Payson where I live, we had well over a couple feet of snow along with rain mixed in. We had power outages — power outages, which weigh a little heavier on everyone after the extended one in December. Commentators have called this a storm for the ages and I’ve read comparisons of it to the flood of 1970, so let’s take a look at where this might rank years from now.

Join the Great Backyard Bird Count

Bird watchers coast to coast are invited to take part in the 13th annual Great Backyard Bird Count, Friday, Feb. 12, through Monday, Feb. 15, 2010. Participants in the free event will join tens of thousands of volunteers counting birds in their own backyards, local parks or wildlife refuges.

All about doorknobs

There are two general types of doorknob assemblies: mortise-mounted and bore-mounted.

Tuesday, February 2

Support Ed Blair

I’ve got a candidate I can truly support for town council and that’s Ed Blair. What most of us want from our elected officials is integrity, willingness to listen and consider our opinions, and a thorough understanding of the issues at hand. I can tell you from personal experience that Ed Blair exemplifies these traits which is a good reason to re-elect him to town council in March.

Payson Elementary thanks groups for holiday support

When Payson area schools call for assistance, our community is quick to lend a hand. Even during these difficult economic times, local citizens, businesses and organizations came through again this year in helping to make many children’s Christmas a warm and joyful holiday experience.

Unsecured load hazard

We have all driven behind a vehicle with several inches of snow and ice on the roof of their vehicle without thinking of the risk that we take if that ice would come loose and hit the front of our car or windshield.

Support only fiscally responsible candidates

The parallels of the Great Depression and today’s economy are remarkable. While there are some differences and the causes vary, the government’s approach to recovery is quite similar. I wonder then, what can we expect for results?

Falsely accused

This past Friday night I was at home with my family minding my own business. My sons and I were sleeping by 9:45 p.m. My fiance was visiting our neighbors in the next building over. On Saturday afternoon about 4 p.m. there is someone beating on my front door. My fiance opens the door to see a Payson Police Department officer standing there.

Del Newland

Major Accomplishments: I led the successful annexation and expansion of land for the Town of Star Valley.

Standing up for my constituents in rural Arizona

As state revenues continue to nosedive, the state Legislature is once again turning to rural Arizona to carry a large part of the burden of the state’s fiscal mismanagement. Whether it be counties having to absorb judicial salaries and health funding or state parks being closed across the state, rural Arizona is once again disproportionately impacted by many of the proposals being considered to balance the budget this fiscal year.

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Students’ project goes up, up and away

Crepe paper balloon stays airborne for four minutes

As the balloons rose up and into the air, Dwight Branson’s seventh- and eighth-grade students below jumped up and down with excitement as if they too were filled with hot air.

Real estate terminology crossword

Good faith monetary deposit towards purchase

Business Briefs

“It’s THE opportunity to highlight your business and products to other businesses and residents of Payson and the surrounding communities,” said John Stanton, Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce manager. “The economic situation in Rim Country requires each business to maximize the spotlighting of their goods and services to our local community members. The new location of the showcase, the extended show time, the ability to sell and to share booths is all designed to do just that.”

Senior Circle welcomes new adviser

The Payson Regional Health Outreach/Senior Circle has an enthusiastic new adviser in Christy Vander Molen. The Pine resident started work at the Circle Jan. 18.

SV candidates campaign to keep town small

While what drove them to Star Valley and prompted them to run differs, the four candidates for council can all agree on one thing, they want to keep the town the rural, friendly place it has always been.

Vern Leis

What makes you a good candidate? What are your qualifications? I have the educational background, work experience and time to dedicate myself to projects that are pertinent to all of Star Valley’s residents.

Chris Benjamin

What makes you a good candidate? I am honest, dependable, trustworthy and not a politician.

Paty Henderson

What makes you a good candidate? What are your qualifications? An understanding of the issues that affect Star Valley gained through observation and attendance of Star Valley council and committee meetings. A working knowledge of the history of the area coupled with a broad knowledge base and a steep learning curve.

Valentine’s party set

Have you ever found a baby abandoned on your doorstep? We did! Last Thursday morning I got up a little before six, my usual time.

Putting a bull’s-eye on Payson schools’ budget

For the last two fiscal years, developing a school district budget with recommendations for Payson Unified School District’s Governing Board has been an exercise in hitting a moving target. As a Navy pilot, I got pretty good at delivering ordinance on practice targets that were fixed. Trying to get close to something on wheels was a whole different challenge. The actions and/or inactions of our state government are reminiscent of my old flying days. Those were practice targets though and our budget has real consequences for our students.

Town should be proud

One new industry in 10 years. Our town should be so proud.

Time to end forest wars

Seasons change. So do people. Sometimes even bureaucracies.

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Hoops make-up games are highlight of this week

Regular season basketball action has wrapped up for both Payson High teams and all that remains before postseason play tips off are make-up games postponed in mid-January by inclement weather that closed schools and highways.

Payson golfer wins first pro event

Brandon Kelley wasn’t sure until the final excruciating seconds of post tournament announcements that he had won his first professional match. But when the news came, he breathed a healthy sigh of relief.

Longhorn cards benefit baseball, track

The Payson High School baseball and track programs would not exist as they do today without the money earned from the annual sale of Longhorn Discount Cards.

Outreach for outdoor fans draws crowd

The inaugural “Shoot for the Heart” bass fishing seminar sponsored by Mountain Bible Church was an overwhelming success attracting about 200 attendees, including a throng of children.

Plans for schools’ forest funds create confusion

The feeding frenzy began last week when $1.98 million in federal money for schools countywide landed precisely in the squalor of declining budgets and hoped-for overrides.

State lawmakers urge sales tax vote

Rim Country’s state lawmakers strongly support a plan to ask voters to approve a temporary 1 cent increase in the sales tax — and not a moment too soon.

GCC board members want staff to follow policy

Frustrated by their seeming powerlessness, two Gila Community College board members have written to Eastern Arizona College President Mark Bryce, urging him to ensure GCC administrators follow policy set by the GCC board.

Payson Community Kids reinventing itself

Payson Community Kids is reinventing itself after the unexpected death of its founder, by raising money to build a new building and resuming once-abandoned community service projects.

Gila County Manager Steven Besich dies

Gila County Manager Steven Besich, of Globe, lost his eight-month battle with cancer late last week. He was 58.

Officers find seven grams of meth in truck

Thanks to the watchful eyes of an officer and the trained snout of a K-9, two men were arrested on charges of drug possession in late January.

Two adults arrested on drug, child abuse charges

Police say two adults were arrested on drug and child abuse charges after officers found two children living in a home with marijuana and drug paraphernalia and another adult was arrested on drug charges.

Community Almanac

It’s time to get Longhorn discount cards for great savings on food and services from local businesses. The price is $15 and the cards can be purchased from any Payson High School baseball player or track and field participant. They are also available at the PHS administration office. Cards are only available through the end of February.

Spending time at the hospital

I recently had the opportunity to spend time in Payson Regional Medical Center and Payson Care Center. We should be proud of the care by the staff of our local facilities. Each and every person gave thoughtful, kind and special attention, both during my stay and continues to do so in my outpatient therapy.

Crews worked countless hours to restore power

With the past storm, I am sure you have received many letters and phone calls about the great people who have pitched in to help each other. I too would like to thank the crews from APS in Pine/Strawberry that put in the many hours to restore the electricity in our area.

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Forest wars finally end?

Ag secretary’s visit showcases alliance between environmentalists, timber companies

The forest wars are officially over, declared a blue ribbon panel gathered to greet U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack in Christopher Creek Saturday as he toured a groundbreaking effort to restore forest health and protect fire-threatened communities.

Charity race benefits food bank with goods and cash

Thanks to the proceeds from the inaugural Payson High National Honor Society Community Charity Race, local food bank coffers added 201 pounds of food and $60.

Prescribed burn in Pine today

A prescribed fire is planned for Tuesday in the southeast corner of Pine above the Pine Trailhead.

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Longhorns have shaky season

Almost as soon as the Payson Longhorn's nine game losing streak ended, another skid began.

Monday, February 1

Secretary of Agriculture comes to Rim Country

The Forest Wars are officially over, declared a blue ribbon panel gathered to greet the US Secretary of Agriculture in Christopher Creek on Saturday for a tour of a groundbreaking effort to restore forest health and protect fire-threatened communities.

Three Payson residents arrested on drug charges

Police say two adults were arrested on drug and child abuse charges after officers found two children living in a home with marijuana and drug paraphernalia and another adult was arrested on drug charges.

Reserve a space in the business showcase

Organizers of the 18th Annual Business & Builders Showcase are ready to help Rim Country business owners grow their business.

Sirens test in Pine-Strawberry planned

The Pine-Strawberry Task Force recently announced they would be running a sirens test in Pine-Strawberry on a regular basis.