Stories for May 2010

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Friday, May 28

PSWID meeting goes array

During a contentious three-hour meeting Wednesday, the Pine Strawberry Water Improvement District was turned upside down as some board members accused staff of conspiracy and demanded the resignation of the board’s president and general manager.

Economic development director Ken Volz resigns

After more than two years at the helm of the Northern Gila County Economic Development Corporation, Executive Director Ken Volz resigned Monday.

Payson signs contract to save Tonto Bridge

Advocates and towns rally behind state parks to limit closures

Payson has struck a deal to keep Tonto Natural Bridge State Park open through the summer and into the fall — part of a statewide movement by rural communities to save the collapsing state parks system.

Supervisors select Don McDaniel as county manager

Don McDaniel, a former Winslow city administrator and acting county manager in Maricopa County, has been named Gila County’s new manager.

Thank you, Chili’s Grill and Bar

On May 12 Chili’s Restaurant donated 10 percent of their dinner bills to “The Rim Country Tatas.”

Oil leak has proved devastating

The problem with the Titanic cartoon is after the Titanic sunk, all ships had to have enough lifeboats for their passengers.

Memorial Day: A time of reflection, recreation and relaxation

Each year, the Memorial Day weekend gets the summer in Rim Country off to a roaring start with a jam-packed calendar of activities.

Mountain Bike fest comes to Rim Country

Mix in a few gnarly singletrack trails, a touch of Rim Country splendor and a dash of rhythm and blues and you have a recipe for a great weekend.

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Big community yard sale this Saturday

So, after last week’s article I got a few people who told me a bit more history about the Grey Hackle that I did not know.

Mom says time to crank up aquatics

Chris Giarrizzo has set lofty goals to build a community aquatic program. First off, she’d like to see the current one enhanced to include year-round offerings that benefit all ages.

Town, TRSC, MSA sponsor archery shoot this summer

Those 3-D archery shoots retired law enforcement officer Les Conner jump-started a couple of years ago are now growing in leaps and bounds.

Four new head coaches hired by school board

The Payson School Board — at a special meeting on May 24 — officially hired four new head coaches at Payson High School.

‘Graduation Day’ for many this month

“No more teachers, no more books, no more teacher’s dirty looks!” Yep, it’s that time of the year once again, and Adrian Kimberly’s fun 1961 song couldn’t have said it any better.

Come have breakfast in Tonto Village

We are only one day away from the Memorial Day weekend and the Village buzzing with activity.

Arts, crafts, books and pancakes in Pine

Just when we think that spring has finally arrived, we have two nights with temperatures in the 30s! And the wind has been relentless.

Home cookin’ comes to Tonto Basin

Nancy Shelton doesn’t believe in serving skimpy portions at Momma Lou’s Café. Heaping portions of mashed potatoes and okra fill plates along with king-size pork chops, meatloaf, catfish and great slices of mouse and fruit pie.

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Lots of activities over holiday weekend

The weather has taken its toll on some residents’ properties with damaging winds breaking branches and causing further damage to trees and roofing as wind speeds topped 60 mph on Sunday May 23.

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SBDC helps dream become a reality

Karen Lloyd waded through three years’ worth of bureaucratic red tape before opening Karen’s Kare Bears day care.

CASA volunteers help children

Every year, more than 10,000 children languish in Arizona’s foster care system due to parental abuse or neglect.

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Sports group names scholarship winners

Dakota Marshall and Maddie Nossek have been named the recipients of the second Mogollon Sporting Association Ted Pettet Scholarships.

Rules of engagement when it comes to blog comments

The best part of the social media revolution is the ability to communicate with thousands of other interested individuals.

Senior hurler called for All-Stars

Arizona Coaches Association members have chosen Mary Hagen to participate in the annual North vs. South All-Star game.

Projecting Arizona’s future

It’s the year 2030 and there is major political and social upheaval in Arizona. After nearly a half of a century of Republican dominance in the governor’s office and in the legislature, Democrats now have an ironclad hold on the governor’s office and majorities in both the state House and Senate.

Buckle up seat belt campaign started

If you have a habit of driving without a seat belt, watch out, because law enforcement is looking out for you and isn’t afraid to slap with you with a ticket.

So many pets need loving homes

Once a month, the Humane Society of Central Arizona will present a photos-only spotlight on some of the dozens of wonderful dogs and cats available for adoption at their shelter.

Winter storms take heavy toll on ponderosa, pinyon trees

According to the Arizona State Forestry Division, widespread storm damage to ponderosa and pinyon pines and other tree species, caused by the El Niño storms this winter and spring, can be seen throughout the Payson area.

Proud to live in Arizona

The people of Arizona are very lucky to have a governor who has the guts and courage to protect the citizens in Arizona.

Gold is popular

In the early days of his reign in the 1300s King Philip the Fair of France saw a novel way to enrich his treasury by the confiscating of the Knights Templar’s enormous wealth, the largest in Europe at that time.

Deadline near for big-game applications

The Arizona antelope and elk permits for the fall have already been mailed out to those hunters who were fortunate enough to draw a tag.

Payson sales tax dollars slump badly in April

Tax collections swoon 29 percent, just as officials hoped for relief from downturn

Like a patient that’s lost too much blood — Payson’s economy seems to swoon every time it staggers to its feet.

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Payson seniors earn $1M in scholarships

A full moon rose in the distance as Payson High School’s Class of 2010 marched through Thursday night’s graduation ceremony on the football field.

Cops vow to avoid racial profiling

Racial profiling will not be tolerated in Gila County when Arizona’s new immigration law goes into effect July 29, the county’s sheriff said Thursday.

First GCC task force meeting successful, says member

A successful bid by Gila Community College for independence and equal state funding could cost the state an additional $9 million under the current formula, according to board member Tom Loeffler who attended a recent task force meeting.

Community Almanac

Stop and see what members of the Paws in the Park group will be selling at Walmart May 28.

Dear graduates: The best is yet to come

Another class has graduated — cast out into the world, with our love and blessings. And no matter how hard we try — we can’t avoid tearing up at such a moment.

Administration should focus on proven border solutions

Attorneys at the Department of Justice are busy researching ways they can sue Arizona over its new immigration law.

An interesting phenomena

I have noticed in the last eight to 10 years that 99 percent of the time that vehicles with only one working running light are either GM or Chevy SUVs or pickups.

When evaluating investments, look at value — not just price

Most investors pay a great deal of attention to the price of their investments — yesterday’s price, today’s price, tomorrow’s price, next year’s price and so on. And that’s understandable, because we always want the prices of our investments to rise.

GI happiness is soft boots, stuffed belly, and snug bed, Part II

I left off last week at the point where I had just finished telling of my first experiences with GI boots and shoes. Let’s finish that up so we can talk about GI beds.

Wednesday, May 26

Economic development director resigns

After more than two years at the helm of the Northern Gila County Economic Development Corporation, Executive Director Ken Volz resigned Monday.

Lifetime student of art shares work

Myra Kraemer will be the featured artist at the Artists of the Rim Gallery during June. A reception will be held for her during First Friday festivities from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m., Friday, June 4.

Outdoor adventures await the summer traveler

The weather is improving and perhaps you are already thinking of where to get out and experience the great outdoors. Of course, there are many choices and today I will outline a few locations you might consider.

The capture of an outlaw in Tonto Basin

Back in the day, the Tonto Basin was a pretty wild place, with the area around Mount Reno (now known as Mount Ord) as wild as any.

Art in the park

Thanks to a snow day during the Rim Country’s wet and stormy winter, the students in Jim Strong’s art classes enjoyed a day at Green Valley Park recently.

Dancers host 30th annual festival

The Zane Grey Twirlers are sponsoring the 30th annual Square and Round Dance Festival June 11 and 12 at the Tonto Apache Recreation Center, southeast of the Mazatzal Hotel and Casino.

Sizzling summer salads

A sensational summer menu can be simple, yet satisfying; exotic, yet familiar. Instead of making salad a sleepy side item this summer, mix things up and add some sizzle to the table with a sumptuous entrée salad straight from the grill.

Payson man offers commemorative plaques for families of military

This year, for Memorial Day, remember a loved one in the armed services with a special, free commemorative plaque designed and made by David Slater.

A time of reflection, recreation and relaxation

Each year the Memorial Day weekend gets the summer in Rim Country off to a roaring start with a jam-packed calendar of activities. This year is no different. Take time to remember the real reason for the holiday at any or all of four services this year.

Fire restrictions on State Trust Lands

The State Forestry Division Fire implemented fire and smoking restrictions Wednesday that will run through July 31.

Tuesday, May 25

Tournament is a chance to remember Jack

The annual Jack Morris Memorial Benefit Golf Tournament is more than an opportunity to enjoy a round of golf while raising much-needed money for the Payson High football program and a memorial scholarship.

A belated thank you

To everyone that helped make JRE’s Spring Fling a success — thank you.

Sheriff’s Posse instates new captain

At a recent general meeting of the Payson Gila County Sheriff’s Posse, Rick DePillipis was sworn in as posse captain. DePillipis was appointed by the posse board and confirmed at the general meeting.

Bicyclist has bumps, bruises after colliding with car

A bicyclist escaped serious injury after crashing a bike into a car Thursday afternoon and walked away with only a few bumps and bruises.

Community Almanac

Donate blood from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Tuesday, May 25 at the Fireside Room of the Mazatzal Hotel & Casino.

Decision to let high school principal go was a poor one

I first moved to Payson in 1969 and all my sons attended and graduated from Payson elementary and high schools. I have not been crazy about every teacher they had, but never had a reason to be glad to see one go.

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Patient’s Choice Award winners honored

When Payson Regional Medical Center (PRMC) asked former patients to nominate nurses who exceeded expectations, the community responded with an incredible number of nominations.

Payson police to host National Night Out activities at Green Valley Park

On July 31, the Payson Police Department is once again hosting the National Night Out (NNO), a nationwide police effort aimed at lowering crime rates.

Seniors get spicy this summer to help teens

Members of the Senior Circle will spice it up this summer with a Bikini Car Wash and Zumba Dance.

Payson cuts costs with health shift, buyouts

Eight town employees take five months of salary, insurance coverage to retire early

Changes in health insurance and a rash of employee buyouts could help balance Payson’s precarious budget in the upcoming fiscal year.

PHS receives 2010 Global Education Excellence award

Payson High School recently received national recognition for excellence in global education by leading foreign exchange organization EF Foundation for Foreign Study.

Options for getting out and moving on

The housing economy has caused many people to face a dilemma.

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Longhorn spring football practice kicks off

Former PHS player named head coach

Newly appointed Payson High School football coach Byron Quinlan jump-started his first off-season program by holding a five-day spring practice last week on the PHS campus.

Documentary on small town life filming in Payson

An upcoming documentary that producers hope captures small-town nostalgia and the joy of reinvigorating lapsed relationships will soon start filming in Payson.

California boycotters should read their state’s law

I wish those in California who are boycotting our state would read Section 834 B of the California Penal Code. It basically mirrors SB 1070. Just go online and read it.

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Students present research projects during colloquium

Who knew that scientists are curing paralysis with olfactory mucosa transplantation, or that those afflicted with bipolar disorder tend to demonstrate high levels of creativity?

End of water wars finally draws near

Maybe they ought to stage a signing ceremony on a bass boat floating serenely in a Green Valley Lake. If that seems too, well Payson, maybe they could set up a picnic table alongside the Tower Well for the ceremony.

Students bring appreciation to Walmart employee

A large yellow school bus nosily creaked to a stop out in front of Walmart Friday. Some 70 tiny feet filed out, careful in their excitement not to make too much noise as they waddled through the entrance.

Firefighters inhale toxic fumes from brush fire

Weekend fire at abandoned Shumway mill site causes concerns

Several firefighters who helped fight a brush fire at an old mill site south of Payson Saturday, suffered minor smoke inhalation and could have breathed in toxic chemicals including arsenic abandoned at the site.

Many people helped with Tonto NRCD Ag. Education Field Day

On behalf of The Tonto National Resource Conservation District, I, Lori Brown, would like to thank Lani Hall, our Gila County 4-H extension leader, and Johnna Kile, my assistant activity director, for all their time, thought and hard work to make this as good as I expected it to be.

State, federal candidates attend meet and greet Republican event

About 25 Republican local, state and federal candidates attended a meet and greet hosted by the Rim Country Republican Club Saturday at Rumsey Park.

Question: Who should count GCC’s tuition?

Gila Community College’s budget next year will increase 10 percent — not counting tuition.

Forest officials seek comments

The Tonto National Forest has started a public comment period on a draft Environmental Assessment for Heber-Reno/ Morgan Mountain Sheep Driveways.

Payson signs off on sale of wells to Star Valley

$100,000 deal would also limit pumping from infamous Tower Well

The Payson Town Council has approved an agreement to sell three deep-water wells to neighboring Star Valley for $100,000 and to limit its future use of the controversial Tower Well.

Rodeo 50/50 winners announced

Larry Hinds of Glendale and Daniel Taft of Payson won the Payson Pro-Rodeo Committee 50/50 drawings at the Gary Hardt Memorial Rodeo.

Forest recreation sites open in time for Memorial Day weekend

Visitors planning to travel to the Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests (ASNFs) this upcoming Memorial Day weekend will be happy to know that the forest’s recreation sites have opened for the summer season.

Farmers Market to open May 29 at Sawmill Crossing

Locavores rejoice, the Payson Farmers Market will open May 29 for the summer with double the vendors in its new location at Sawmill Crossing.

Mesa firefighter gets help from buddies after breaking leg on trail

Mesa firefighters had to help rescue one of their own Thursday afternoon after a bone breaking fall on a Tonto Basin area trail.

Lawsuits blast plan to reduce eagle protection

Apaches, environmentalists insist politics again overruled science at Fish and Wildlife Service

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife has once again substituted politics for science by overruling the views of biologists in trying to remove desert bald eagles from the endangered species list, according to a lawsuit filed by environmentalists and several Apache tribes.

Casino security uses AED to revive woman who collapsed on the job

A Mazatzal Hotel and Casino worker who went into cardiac arrest while gardening Monday afternoon was revived, thanks to the prompt action of casino security, according to the Payson Fire Department.

Sparky and Wilbur to tug family loyalties

It would be fun and entertaining to be a fly on the wall in the Nossek home next fall when Arizona State University plays the University of Arizona in the two schools’ bitter rivalry football game.

Attempt to end SV business license fails

What’s in a tax? For one Star Valley councilor determined to take a stand against the government’s many tariffs, change has to start at the local level.

New immigration law is absolutely the correct answer

The proof that Arizona’s SB 1070 is the absolutely correct answer at the perfect time is all the purple-faced, bug-eyed, slobber-slinging diatribes being launched against it by the left.

Senior runs down all comers

The challenge of competing against the finest athletes in Arizona high school track and field was not a hurdle Dustin Isles couldn’t clear.

Senior pockets McDonald’s scholarship

Academic achievement and community involvement has earned Payson High School senior Elizabeth Luna the Ronald McDonald House $2,500 scholarship to attend the college of her choice.

Sunday, May 23

Blasting continues on State Route 260 east of Payson

Road closure Monday and Wednesday at noon

PAYSON – The Arizona Department of Transportation will close a two-mile segment of State Route 260 15 miles east of Payson at noon on Monday, May 24 and Wednesday, May 26

Windy conditions not ideal for campfires

Forest officials are urging campers headed for northern Arizona and Coconino National Forest to be extremely careful with campfires, as very windy conditions are forecasted for today and throughout the weekend.

Friday, May 21

East Region coaches honor Lady Longhorns

The laurels are flowing in for members of the Lady Longhorn softball team.

Prop. 100 easily passes in Gila County

Despite serious concerns it wouldn’t pass, the residents of Gila County and the rest of the state overwhelmingly supported Proposition 100 at Tuesday’s polls.

New fence for cemetery

Could it be possible that spring has finally arrived? It sure feels that way as we are finally getting warmer weather.

A better way to share your digital photographs

It’s amazing that some of us are still using e-mail to send pictures to our friends and family.

Vendors for Memorial Day, yard sale sought

The Tall Pines Market is really stepping it up a notch to help members of the community.

Vote for us in the Shelter Challenge

Follow these simple steps to help us win grant money in The Animal Rescue Site’s $100,000 Shelter Challenge.

Payson woman makes bid for state senate

Politicians worried about surviving the next election often make short-term decisions instead of devising long-term solutions, said Payson resident and Democratic state senate candidate Elaine Bohlmeyer.

Springtime turkey season a success

The spring turkey hunting season came to a close yesterday throughout all of northern Arizona. The birds in the local units of 22, 23 and 6A were very obliging in that they continued to turkey talk to the final days of the hunt.

Seminar on Coues deer set at Mtn. Bible

The Mountain Bible Church-sponsored “Shoot for the Heart” series of outdoor seminars continues at 6 p.m., Saturday, May 22 with Chuck Youngkers leading a presentation on “Arizona Coues Whitetail” deer. Youngkers, a renowned Rim Country hunter, will give tips on how to find, hunt and score the deer.

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Appreciating Ag

’Twas agriculture field day and not a video game was in sight.

Payson High School slugger named to All-State second team

Payson High School junior Westin Gibson has been chosen to the Arizona Baseball Coaches Association Class 3A All-State second team as a designated hitter.

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Fab four set for champions’ showdown Saturday

A foursome of Payson High School’s finest track and field athletes has spent the past week preparing for appearances in one of the state’s most prestigious postseason competitions.

Junior Rodeo returns to roots

As if the Lone Ranger’s introduction “Return with us now to the thrilling days of yesteryear” was echoing through the air, Payson youth rodeo action soon takes a step back in time to when the thrills and spills of Arizona Junior High School Rodeo Finals was a Rim Country highlight.

I-40 closures possible this weekend due to high wind warnings

Forecasters are predicting a combination of high winds and dry conditions for northeastern Arizona this weekend, posing a threat to drivers on Interstate 40 where similar conditions have prompted multiple closures due to near-zero visibility.

Owning bonds in today’s interest rate environment is a good move

If you own bonds, keep this in mind: Bond prices typically drop when interest rates rise.

Get set for Saturday nights in the park

Make a list of your favorite picnic supper foods and supplies and start getting the ingredients together. Find easy-to-carry lawn chairs or a nice, thick, comfy blanket to put on the grass at Green Valley Park. The annual Concert Under the Stars series is coming back in just a couple of weeks.

Zone change for huge block of land hits snag

Developers will rework request for 222-acre block along Airport Road that includes some of the last land left for light industry and apartments

The Payson Planning Commission during a recent meeting put off hearings on a detailed zone change for a crucial 222 acres of forested land near the Airport to let the developer recast a plan for houses, apartments and an industrial park.

Middle school students planning push for Relay for Life

he students and staff of Rim Country Middle School are planning a big push for the upcoming Relay for Life, the area’s premier fund-raising event to help fight all cancers.

Grant helps handicapped youth learn adult skills

For many youth that are seriously mentally ill, transitioning into adulthood is a challenge. From finding a job, a home and learning to support themselves on their own, many teens find the transition difficult, especially since a lot of assistance programs end when they become adults.

Kyl needs to introduce legislation to deal with immigration issue

Arizona has two of the most powerful and long-serving senators in Congress: Sen. John McCain, the Republican Party’s last presidential candidate, and Sen. Jon Kyl, who ranks second among the Senate Republican leadership.

Green Valley Lake needs to be cleaned up

If the citizens of Payson are asked to keep up their property, what’s the problem with the Town of Payson?

Aero Fair was a huge success

The 2010 Payson Aero Fair on Saturday, May 15 was a huge success.

GI happiness is soft boots, stuffed belly and snug bed

Oh yeah! Good boots, good food, and a good bunk. Any GI who has all three is in danger of smiling so hard he may split his face. Or worse, smiling so hard some %$#@! lieutenant gets it into his head that the troops need more training.

Being on the front lines of illegal immigration

After Arizona rancher Rob Krentz was murdered on his ranch a month ago, I participated in a Senate hearing on border violence.

Failing to fix the Fannie and Freddie fiasco

The Senate continues to press forward with legislation to address the causes of the financial crisis. But, while lawmakers’ eyes have trained on the big banks in New York, they have overlooked two of the main culprits of the financial crisis within the Capital Beltway.

Make long view part of plan for new fire station

What happens if you build a new fire station but you don’t have the firefighters or the equipment to operate it?

Community Almanac

Rim Country Middle School is offering enrichment classes this summer. The deadline to register is Friday, May 21.

Meth Messenger: Hope and recovery from drug addiction

This column centers on hope and recovery from drug addiction. There is help available and there are agencies and facilities willing to give assistance to addicts in an effort to find a treatment plan suited to his/her particular needs.

Community comes to aid of burned out family

Thanks to a profusion of donations from residents and businesses, a family displaced by a May 1 fire will soon have a new home, and plans are under way to rebuild their former rental.

Payson council awards fire station bids

Town gets a bargain on building third station, but still needs federal grants to staff it

Sure enough: Payson got a smoking deal on a new fire station. Now all the cash-strapped town has to do is find a way to staff it.

Sales tax saves schools

Voters statewide approved the 1-cent sales tax measure this week, which means Payson schools avoided “mothballing” Frontier Elementary School and laying off enough teachers to qualify as crisis-mode, Superintendent Casey O’Brien said at a Rim Country Chamber lunch at Tiny’s Thursday.

Star Valley council keeps lid on coffers

With tax revenues unpredictable next year, the town of Star Valley isn’t taking any risks with its proposed budget, preferring to keep its rainy day fund life jacket securely fastened.

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Highway 260 construction continues

In case you haven’t noticed, our Highway 260 looks mighty different these days.

Four walls better than one for Arizona

Vaca Sagrada! No matter which side of the proposed John McCain fence you’re on, Arizona’s new illegal immigration law certainly has caused a stir, hasn’t it?

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Barbershop offers affordable ’dos for men and women

While salons and spas have become trendy outlets for a haircut in recent years, a trip to the local barbershop proves you can still get a great cut for only a few bucks.

Mogollon High School track getting a facelift

The weather has been very pleasant lately. A few days we had breezes. The fire danger has already been set to “high” as indicated at the Black Mesa Ranger Station billboard next to Highway 260 in Overgaard.

Couple starts diaper drive to help families

After reading a Time magazine article that described women reusing disposable diapers in Connecticut, local resident Anthony Alfano knew something had to be done to prevent this from happening in Rim Country.

Neighbors object to looser lot splitting rules

Should Payson make it hard on folks who want to sell their back yards? Nah — let’s be loose, says Payson’s planning staff.

Advocacy center to join Childhelp family in treating abused children

A program dedicated to the treatment and prevention of child abuse in Payson will stay open after a national nonprofit stepped up and took the program over May 1.

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Pilots pass on love of flight at Aero Fair

After a rough and tumble night of bronc and bull riding Friday at the Gary Hardt Memorial Spring Rodeo, the Aero Fair Saturday offered visitors a soft place to land. With near perfect weather, it was nothing but smooth flying throughout the event.

Wednesday, May 19

Women can ignore most fibroids

A 50-year-old friend of mine was diagnosed with leiomyoma of the uterus. Does this have anything to do with fibroids?

The Story of Payson, Arizona

Chapter 42: The Sawmill Brought Employment

In 1951, the Owens family located their sawmill in the old Pieper Meadow at the east end of town. At least folks were still calling it Pieper’s Meadow, even though Mrs. Pieper sold the acreage to the Hathaways after she was widowed. The meadow was an open area leading down from Main Street to the American Gulch.

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A Peek at the Past

Sometimes when an item stares you in the face day after day, it can become so common place it gets missed.

CRUISING UP THE AMAZON

A few years ago we decided to take a cruise up the Amazon River in Brazil. Being the largest river in the world, we thought we should experience some of it.

Lots to do this summer in Rim Country

One of the best places to spend the long, lazy days of summer is at your nearest library. This year there will be youth programs at both the Payson Public Library and the Isabelle Hunt Memorial Library in Pin

Blessing of the Bikes

All motorcycle riders and their passengers are invited to the annual, free “Blessing of the Bikes” Saturday, May 22 at the Payson United Methodist Church, 414 N. Easy St.

All about Alaska, Part 4

A few months ago I wrote about the various itineraries for seeing Alaska with an escorted land tour.

Interstate 40 closures possible this week due to high winds

National Weather Service predicting storm front in Northern Arizona

Forecasters are predicting a combination of high winds and dry conditions for northeastern Arizona this week, posing a threat to drivers on Interstate 40 where similar conditions have prompted multiple closures due to near-zero visibility.

Tuesday, May 18

Unofficial results show Gila County residents support Prop 100

Early election results show proposition 100, a temporary one percent state sales tax increase, has passed, with Gila County residents overwhelmingly supporting the measure.

Finally, an award for the GCC board

Congratulations to Gila Community College’s governing board for winning the Arizona Press Club’s Brick Wall Award.

Libraries plan host of summer events

This year there will be youth programs at both the Payson Public Library and the Isabelle Hunt Memorial Library in Pine.

The impact of Proposition 100

By now, just about everyone knows that on May 18 there is a special election to consider raising the state sales tax by 1 cent for each of the next three years.

Community Almanac

Watch Payson High School’s advanced science students present miniature lectures on a wide variety of science topics currently covered in the news

Horns tapped for All-East, All-State teams

Although the Longhorn baseball team didn’t enjoy the success coach Jerry Daniels and the players were hoping for in 2010, the frustration of not reaching the state tournament didn’t stop opposing coaches from honoring PHS athletes.

Senior track star reaps state gold and silver medals

Maddie Nossek took full advantage of a chance to showcase her considerable skills on the statewide stage by earning two gold and two silver medals at the 3A Arizona state track and field championships.

Payson budget: Stingy, yet strangely lavish

Possible federal grants and money for Blue Ridge pipeline make proposed budget look huge — but penny-pinching continues

The Payson Town Council got a close look last week at a very strange budget — like a lady who can eat twice her weight in crab meat and still stay real skinny.

Four students in running for two $2,000 MSA awards to be given May 25

Members of the Mogollon Sporting Association Ted Pettet Scholarship Committee have narrowed down the candidates to four finalists.

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Rodeo was a ‘humdinger’ for spectators

Despite recent flare-ups over the rights to the August Rodeo, the only thing flaring at the 2010 Gary Hardt Memorial Spring Rodeo were the cowboys and stock, anxious to put on a show for some 1,200 spectators.

Sports, special competitions set for summer fun

Summer doesn’t “officially” begin until June 21, but everyone knows it really starts when the kids get out of school — and that big day is next week in the Rim Country.

Rim Club opens its doors to the public

The Rim Club, once the exclusive hideaway of the well heeled who could afford million-dollar homes and pricey golf club memberships, is opening its doors to the public.

Blasting will cause delays to Highway 260 traffic

The Arizona Department of Transportation will close a two-mile segment of State Route 260, 15 miles east of Payson at noon on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

New bill could protect renters from risky foreclosure properties

Our legislature has been busy this session enacting new statutes that pertain to real estate.

High school needs own principal

As a future Payson High School student, I am concerned at the thought of us not having our own principal to oversee our campus because half of the current high school students like Mr. Sandoval and will most likely be devastated to see him go.

The Arizona compromise

This is not a pro or con letter concerning the recently passed Senate Bill 1070. Whether an individual is for or against the bill, it seems obvious that our leaders have painted us into an economic corner that threatens our state financially and reputation-wise.

SV may work with Payson on community block grants

With an intergovernmental agreement between Payson and Star Valley on water issues finally in the pipes, it seems only natural the two towns would join forces on other projects.

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$30,400 won by spring rodeo’s top competitors

Calling the 2010 Gary Hardt Memorial Rodeo “Our finest May rodeo ever,” Bill Armstrong praised the many volunteers and sponsors who helped the event go off without a hitch.

GCC enrollment drop not so drastic

Updated enrollment figures for Gila Community College show the previously reported hemorrhage was actually a large leak.

Warming temperatures bring Fossil Creek rescues

As weather and creek temperatures warm throughout the Rim Country, so do the number of rescues.

National Day of Prayer

Praise the Lord for every one of the 350 attendees at the Christian National Day of Prayer services in Gila County on Thursday, May 6. Each of the morning prayer gatherings, at Crossroads and Mt. Bible churches, plus the Pine School flagpole and Community Center Ramada, were well-organized and very worshipful.

Arizona has not faced a financial crisis of this magnitude since World War II

Arizona has not faced a financial crisis of this magnitude since World War II, and hard-working families right here in Payson are paying the price.

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Students tackle shark dissection

The largest area of a shark’s brain controls its sense of smell and taste. Compare that to a human’s mind, which mostly directs cognitive function.

Relay for Life is June 4

Less than a month remains until Payson runs the relay that saves lives.

CowBelles award four scholarships

The Gila County CowBelles Organization has awarded four scholarships to graduating seniors in Gila County this year.

’Neath the Rim Studio Tour

Thank you to everyone who helped with the Payson Art League 2010 ’Neath the Rim Studio Tour.

Art tour was a great success

I wanted to thank all of the members of the Payson Art League, all of the sponsors, and all of the visitors who made the ’Neath the Rim Art Studio Tour such a great success!

Check expiration dates on all your food

What kind of a food shopper are you? Do you regularly check the expiration dates on products you buy?

Former Shelby School student is International Chess Master

In October of 2009, former Shelby School student Daniel Rensch became the first Arizona born International Chess Master (IM).

Brick Wall award goes to GCC governing board

Gila Community College’s governing board has won the Arizona Press Club’s Brick Wall Award for the board’s “egregious disregard for transparency.”

Outdoor festival starts May 22

Spring has arrived and it is time to get outdoors and explore Arizona’s natural resources.

Senior Circle news

Director Guy Lanahan was the guest speaker at the monthly Senior Circle luncheon on May 12. As the director of the Payson Regional Medical Center Diagnostic Imaging Center, he gave a very informative lecture concerning the new technology equipment such as the open MRI, the CT scanner, the cardio stress testing and the DEXA equipment, which checks bone density.

Payson’s longtime town attorney retires

Payson Town Attorney Sam Streichman last week took a buyout package and retired, after 20 years service guiding the town through various legal thickets.

Lighten up, guys!

I recently learned that Tim Fruth sent a hostile text message to Rory Huff that alluded to “war.”

Charity ride successful

This past Mother’s Day weekend the American Legion Riders hosted our annual charity ride to support Payson Supply Line.

PHS hurdler dazzles at state

The prep track and field world now knows Dustin Iles.

Women’s, men’s golf heats up on Rim

Payson Golf Course has been a beehive of activity with members of the Payson Golf Association and Lady Niners hosting a series shootouts.

Help the humane society

There is a Web site called www.theanimalrescuesite.com.

Monday, May 17

Spring Outdoor Festival at Mormon Lake

Spring has arrived and it is time to get outdoors and explore Arizona’s natural resources.

Prescribed fire for the week of May 17

Pending favorable conditions, fire managers are planning to conduct several prescribed burns in the Coconino National Forest.

Blasting will delay traffic on Highway 260, east of Payson this week

Road closed Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday at noon

The Arizona Department of Transportation will close a two-mile segment of State Route 260, 15 miles east of Payson at noon on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.

Friday, May 14

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Gila college graduates largest ever class

Gila Community College’s 12 Payson graduates walked down the aisle Wednesday night in the Payson High School auditorium.

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Horns send 13 to state

Armed with two East Region gold medalists and 11 qualifiers, the Longhorns are advancing to the 3A state track and field championships.

School’s annual yard sale tomorrow

I hope everyone had a great weekend at the one year dedication celebration for the ramada, second annual Antique Tractor and Engine Show, and Pine Shop Hop.

Rim trout fishing waters recharged and ready

The heavy snowfall this past winter has definitely recharged all the trout fishing waters, including the seven lakes above 7,000 feet on the Mogollon Rim

Family displaced by fire needs more than Red Cross help

A family of five displaced after a fire destroyed the interior of their rental home May 1, needs help getting back on their feet.

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Dig into the Rim Country’s history at museum, cabin

Upcoming exhibit will be a memorial to the firefighters who risked their lives battling the Dude Fire

Sometimes when an item stares you in the face day after day, it can become so common place it gets missed.

First in Cornhole series Saturday

This week had many days with winds along with other communities in our state. On Tuesday we had an increase of wind velocity that reached gusts up to 60 mph.

Time to get ready for summer visitors

It looks like the nice summer weather is here. Last few days it’s been T-shirt weather. How nice is that? With the weather getting so nice up here, it means that the weather will start to get boiling hot in the Valley, which means the return of summer visitors to Rim Country.

Spring Fling tomorrow

The weather is just perfect, not too warm and not too cold. I am anxious to get the garden planted. We have been told that it is still too early for tomato plants, that the nighttime temperature should be at least 55 degrees.

Patsy Cline’s influence remains iconic

To me, the music business is just so fascinating. I always seem to be bumping into someone who has an interesting music-related story to tell.

The battle for control of your e-mail inbox

Nobody likes SPAM. We’re talking about e-mail SPAM, of course, although the canned meat version isn’t exactly scoring high on the Twitter trend lists, either. Unsolicited messages in our inboxes are the enemy of productivity and sanity.

With planning, ‘Sandwich Generation’ can avoid financial squeeze

You may be apart of the “Sandwich Generation,” if you are caring for your aging parents while supporting your own children.

Blessed to have wonderful volunteers

With the cool breezes blowing, some mornings it feels as though spring just can’t get a good hold. But if you come down to the humane society, all the signs are there. Puppies and kittens are arriving every day.

Hotel managers lodge futile bed tax rise protest

Struggling hotel owners made a futile, last-ditch effort to stave off a 5 percent jump in Payson’s bed tax last week.

Teachers unsure about changes

Recent cuts at Payson High School appear to have deeply divided teachers, with some supportive of the decisions and others questioning the motives behind them.

Star Valley moves forward with building purchase

Despite a few concerns over a recent inspection report, the Town of Star Valley will officially own its town hall after closing later this month.

Vice principal put on leave after texting board president

Payson High School’s vice principal nearly found himself in hot water after sending a “threatening” text message to the school board’s president last month.

Community Almanac

The Hellsgate Fire Department and the Moose Lodge in Star Valley will co-host a Spring Fling Saturday, May 15. The event kicks off with a hearty breakfast prepared by the Moose staff from 7 a.m. until 9 a.m. Lunch will also be served from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Hot dogs and hamburgers will be on the menu.

Dream lives on in community college

The dream lives. The future’s bright. And our hats are off. Wednesday night, 12 proud Payson residents received their diplomas from Gila Community College. All told, 61 people have earned a degree this year from the community college — a record. Another 17 earned professional certificates.

Understanding Arizona’s new immigration law

Arizona’s new immigration law has recently attracted a lot of attention, including a fair amount of criticism from people outside the state, many of whom may not understand the gravity of the security threat that we face at our southern border.

Thanks for Eagle project help

On May 8 we finished the first part of my Eagle project which was re-fencing the Pine cemetery. And I’d like to thank the Pine community for helping take down the old fence. There were 30 people there. And last, but not least, the second part of my Eagle project is on May 22 and we are going to dig the holes for the new fence poles.

Congress is a mess

Congress, the House and Senate are a total mess! We need to get rid of all of them. Totally. Start over.

Thanks for the free babysitting

I would like to see a thank you be put in the paper to the Crossroads Church in Payson. They were generous and offered free babysitting on Friday, May 7.

Consequences of Prop. 100 defeat will be devastating

Even though I have only lived in Payson since January, I have become friends with some of the greatest teachers here.

Hurray for Gov. Brewer

I am a 73-year-old resident of Gila County. I have worked on campaigns from Darrell Smith to Barry Goldwater until the present time.

Sales tax increase necessary

Like many states across the country, Arizona faces a massive budget shortfall. The governor and Legislature have already cut the state’s budget by $1 billion.

Sometimes screwups on radio were more fun than the programs

As I’m sure you already know, mountains and long distance radio reception don’t mix. FM is a bust, and even AM leaves a lot to be desired.

Local country singer “kickin’ up dust” on first music video

Just two years after landing a demo deal and recording her first album, Payson country singer Candyce paid homage to her hometown May 1 and 2 by recording her first video in the Rim Country.

Longhorns battle winds and 3A’s best

For decades to come, coaches, players and fans will spin stunning tales about the state golf tournament that was held in 55-plus mph winds that spiraled putts away from their intended destinations and puffed tee shots tens of yards off course.

Man goes from subordinate to supervisor in 7 years

From Rim Country Health and Retirement Community’s maintenance director to head honcho, Russell Goddard proved that with hard work and dedication, it is possible to rise from the bottom to the top.

Being courteous can start a chain reaction of kindness

Being courteous means being nice, respectful, patient, and polite. Courtesy is part of the Boy Scout Law because one small act of courtesy really can make a community a better place.

Time for a change — for charity

Change begins one oil pan at a time.

State track and field honors up for grabs at Arizona State University

The premier track and field meet of the year kicks off at 12:30 p.m. today, Friday, May 14, with qualifiers from around the state gathering on the campus of Arizona State University to compete in the 3A state championships.

Choose new coaches with diligence

In February, I wrote an Extra Points titled “Mourning loss of ‘father of Sun Devil sports.’” It centered on the death of legendary Arizona State University football, basketball and baseball coach Bill Kajikawa at age 97.

Speed cameras to stay in Star Valley

Although the state has decided to end its use of photo enforcement cameras this summer, Star Valley says it has no plans to remove its four cameras unless state mandated to do so.

Commission tweaks Payson landscaping

Payson’s water-thrifty, native-plant-loving, “cool mountain town” landscaping requirements survived two rounds of review with only minor changes.

Aero Fair to have displays of planes, cars, tractors

As enthusiasm levels have gained elevation, the Aero Fair is finally flying into town this weekend.

Softball coach remains upbeat in wake of loss

The Lady Longhorns’ softball season didn’t end as most had hoped, but that didn’t dampen assistant coach Kadi Tenney’s enthusiasm.

Citizens group seeks audit of EAC and GCC finances

The recent Auditor General report that uncovered abuses of public money by Eastern Arizona College President Mark Bryce has spurred the Citizens Awareness Committee to request a look into the finances of both Eastern and Gila Community College.

College task force to hold first meeting in Phoenix

The new state senate task force devoted to making Gila Community College independent will have its first meeting Wednesday morning in Phoenix.

Wednesday, May 12

Tie-down roping, bull riding are feats of strength

As with saddle bronc riding and team roping, the roots of tie-down roping can be traced back to the working ranches of the Old West.

Enjoy youngsters in mutton bustin’

Pound for pound — and that’s animal and athlete combined — probably the most entertaining competitions at the 2010 Gary Hardt Memorial Spring Rodeo will be the youngsters that suit up to ride the wooly beasts in mutton bustin’ and the willful and wily livestock used in steer riding.

The classic event

Saddle bronc riding is rodeo’s classic event, both a complement and contrast to the wilder spectacles of bareback riding and bull riding.

Remembering Gary

The Payson Pro Rodeo Committee honors the memory of Gary Hardt when the action hits the arena at the Payson Event Center this weekend.

Rodeo a chance to let good times roll

It was a long, cold, wet winter in Arizona. But the days are longer and warmer and it’s time to shake off the weariness of winter and let the good times roll.

Rodeo 101 - according to the PRCA

Professional rodeo action consists of two types of competitions: roughstock events and timed events; and an all-around cowboy crown.

Bareback riding, steer wrestling test skills

Bareback riders endure more abuse, suffer more injuries and carry away more long-term damage than all other rodeo cowboys.

Team roping takes hours of practice

Team roping, the only true team event in Pro Rodeo, requires close cooperation and timing between two highly skilled ropers — a header and a heeler — and their horses.

Sponsors make rodeo ride a success

Presenting any rodeo takes a great deal of work by innumerable volunteers. It also takes money from many sources.

Welcome to our rodeo celebration

Payson and the Rim Country are kicking off summer with a celebration of the region’s Old West heritage.

Tough Enough to Wear Pink event helps public, cowboys fight cancer

Cowboys, crews and rodeo fans are partnering to help in the fight against a foe fiercer than any bull or bronc to hit an arena.

Tuesday, May 11

Proud to wear colors of the American flag

In 1966 I was a young Marine serving in Vietnam. Many good men and women gave their lives fighting for our country, our flag, and all the people in America

Immigrants need to become Americans

Theodore Roosevelt’s idea on immigrants and being an American “in the first place we should insist that if the immigrant who comes here in good faith becomes an American and assimilates himself to us.

Business owners vent frustrations

Nearly 200 tell town officials they need help, signs, and fewer regulations

More signs. Less paperwork. More information and how about a college campus?

Breakfast with a Lion

Have you ever had breakfast with a Lion?

EF pounds Lady Horns in first round

It was one and out for the Lady Longhorn softball team in the Class 3A state tournament.

Commonly posed real estate questions

As a real estate broker, many times the conversation turns to general questions about the real estate business. Because I am in the business, people want to ask for my opinion and advice.

Family ‘lucky to be alive’ after fire burns home

According to the Payson Fire Department, a family “is lucky to be alive” after a 3-year-old boy nearly burned his home down while playing with matches while the rest of the family slept.

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Wearable art creation all about the fabric

GCC students create special, one of a kind jackets

Everywhere you looked at the second Annual Wearable Art and Quilt Show, your eyes were met with a cacophonous of patterned coats, intricately pieced and embroidered to fit each wearer’s taste.

No vote urged on Proposition 100

Proposition 100 is being promoted as an education “bail out.” In fact, only two-thirds (2/3) of the funds estimated at $600 million will go to education with another estimated $300 million going to health and safety.

Roadside memorial

My son Rick McDonald lost his life on Hwy. 87 five long years ago. We erected a roadside memorial at the site.

Maybe Mr. Sarver should move the Suns to Mexico

If Robert Sarver is so pro-illegal immigrant, to call his team “Los Suns,” maybe he should just move the team to Mexico City, where they could be called “Los Soles” every night of the season.

Vogel takes his leave of ‘best job in the world’

Payson Vice Mayor Mike Vogel attended his final meeting as a council member last week — but shows no signs of quietly fading away like that old soldier.

Forest thinning could yield big job bonanza

Thinning 1.7 million acres of overgrown Arizona forests could cost the federal government an eye-popping $1 billion — but would generate $1.3 billion in economic activity and produce nearly 15,000 jobs, according to an analysis by researchers from Northern Arizona University.

Fools’ Day Fun thank you

Thanks to all the community members that donated to make this year another successful Fools’ Day Fun.

No winners in rodeo suit

What a waste. Payson’s own little not-so-Pleasant Valley war appears settled — with news that the Rodeo Preservation Alliance has agreed to drop its lawsuit and let the Pro-Rodeo Committee take over the World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo. That’s good. Finally, something that makes sense.

Community Almanac

The Mogollon Health Alliance in conjunction with the Payson Fire Department will be holding a free Heartsaver CPR class from 6 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., Tuesday, May 11

House fires are preventable by following guidelines

Four fires that burned three homes and a deck in the last two weeks were all preventable if the occupants had followed a few simple guidelines, the Payson Fire Department said.

Family of fiddlers play final community concert of the season

The Tonto Community Concert Association (TCCA) will lower the curtain on its 2009-2010 season with the Hunt Family Fiddlers — an ensemble of world-ranked Irish dancers and fiery fiddlers — Tuesday, May 11.

Historical society packs calendar with special events

During the next few weeks, the Northern Gila County Historical Society is packing its calendar with special events.

Trial still pending in child pornography case

Seven months after a grand jury indicted a 72-year-old man on 10 counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, a trial is still pending due to a hold up in forensic evidence.

Company at “apex” of solar technology

After installing solar panels on his own home nearly two decades ago, Mike Jackson knew he wanted to help others reap the benefits of solar technology.

Gold-medal duo paces Longhorns in track

Dustin Isles and Forrest Wadington led the Longhorn charge at the 3A East regional track and field finals by winning gold medals in two of the sport’s most demanding events.

Lobos, Cats slip past Lady Horns for East crown

Lady Longhorn hopes of winning the 3A East track and field championship came up 50 points short at the regional championships held May 7 in Snowflake.

Payson FBLA students earn top honors

Payson High School students Tyler Kennedy, David Knauer, Joseph Smith and Dillon Walker competed in the 48th Annual Arizona FBLA State Leadership Conference recently.

Auction helps Christian school

Payson Community Christian School held its 14th annual “Good Apple” Auction and Cowboy Buffet this past Saturday.

Square Dance Festival is in June

The Zane Grey Twirlers are sponsoring the 30th annual Square and Round Dance Festival June 11 and 12 at the Tonto Apache Recreation Center.

Mike Pastor will head supervisors for 16 months

16 months as chairman, supervisors decided last Tuesday.

Still time to rally for 2010 Relay for Life

The Senior Circle will be joining the Payson Regional Medical Center in participating in the Relay for Life, June 4 and June 5

GCC board debates use of senior waivers

Should senior citizens who can pay for classes at Gila Community College receive a discount because of their age?

Schools mired in the past

We were shocked at the recent layoffs of personnel at Payson’s schools, including even our beloved PHS principal. Next year we will be short of funds again

Longhorn boys basketball coach resigns for try at college coaching

After one year at the helm of the Payson High School’s boys basketball program, coach Jared Swanson is stepping down.

School district board seats up for election in Pine, Payson

Calling all wanna-be school board members.

Why do we have the EPA?

Unless you are privy to news that I cannot find, our Environmental Protection Agency did absolutely nothing for 10 days after the accident in the Gulf.

Junior class thanks those who helped with prom

The Junior Class of Payson High School recently organized and pulled off a fantastic prom with one of the highest turnout rates in years. But we could not have done it alone.

Celebrate winter’s end at Gary Hardt Memorial Rodeo

It was a long, cold, wet winter in Arizona. But the days are longer and warmer and it’s time to shake off the weariness of winter and let the good times roll.

Citizens losing freedom and choices

Something to think about: Do you ever think about the czars Obama has hired to do as he says and we pay them? Pay them very well I may add.

One coach moving on; another starts to build athletes

In the March 19 Extra Points column, hope was expressed that Payson High would be able to retain first-year basketball coaches Jared Swanson and Kelly Kreig.

Kindergarten class needs still undecided

Next year’s tuition-based all-day kindergarten has parents and school officials worried that children whose parents can afford the program will later outpace those students left in half-day kindergarten.

Disappointed in coverage

I recognize that the Roundup must consider and serve its strong Republican base, but I am disappointed in the coverage given the Democratic candidate for State Senate (one month after the announcement and on page 11).

Horns play to region silver-medal finish

Turning in perhaps the finest showing of the 2010 prep season, the Longhorn golf team played its way to a second-place finish in the East-North regional tournament.

Rival rodeo groups reach a settlement

Pro-Rodeo Committee will retain rights to put on World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo

The Payson Pro-Rodeo Committee has signed an agreement that gives it ownership of the World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo, according to Rodeo Boss Bill Armstrong.

America’s choice: Arizona or San Francisco?

I am State Senator Russell Pearce, the author of SB 1070, signed by Governor Jan Brewer

Monday, May 10

Rodeo settlement reached

Two warring factions this weekend reached a proposed settlement in the fight over who will stage the World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo in Payson this summer.

Friday, May 7

Invest in mom’s future

Mother’s Day is almost upon us. This year, in addition to giving Mom some flowers and a card, why not brighten her day, and her future, by making a financial gift?

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Careening truck smashes into line of cars

A three-car crash on Highway 87 just north of Payson snarled traffic for two hours Thursday around noon, but apparently caused no deaths or life-threatening injuries.

Happy ending for campus cliffhanger?

The thrilling ASU campus cliffhanger continues to enthrall. So we hate to get our hopes up: It’s such a long fall.

Seeking interesting stories about the area

Anyone seen Bigfoot recently?

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Creativity in Rim Country

Artists share creative spaces in studio tour

Is it the walls and accessories that make one space more creative than another or is it the people who use the space?

Loeffler uses public comment time to bring issues to GCC board members

Again stymied by the Gila Community College board chairman’s refusal to place topics on the agenda, board member Tom Loeffler marched to the podium during the public comment period at last week’s meeting to talk about employee contracts.

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Kaitie’s Closet provides 60 children with new outfits

Thanks to the ingenuity and giving spirit of one local couple, 60 children have new outfits to wear to school.

Mother knew best

“The hand that rocks the cradle is the hand that rules the world,” wrote William Ross Wallace in 1865.

Bullying — we are all responsible

After hearing about Phoebe Prince committing suicide and after watching a “Dateline” special regarding bullying and seeing the other children who have taken their own lives because of bullying. I felt compelled to write.

Thanks for those who helped with the Goat Camp Ruins trail project

As trails and outdoor recreation coordinator with the Payson Parks, Recreation and Tourism Department, I would like to express my sincere thanks on behalf of our department to the following people/organizations that enabled us recently to finally construct the Payson Area Trails System (PATS) Goat Camp Ruins trail and protect this special archaeological site off of Tyler Parkway:

Higher Payson water rates, hotel rates coming

The Payson Council Thursday approved a 10 percent hike in water rates and a 5 percent increase in the hotel bed tax in a jam-packed three-hour meeting.

AKC-sanctioned dog show this weekend

The weather has been unpredictable the last week, with the small amount of snow and heavy winds topping 53 mph. We are now on a calm warming trend that many welcome with a sigh of relief.

Many events this weekend in Pine

Just when we thought the weather couldn’t possibly get any stranger we got another dusting of snow on Sunday! “Tired of winter” doesn’t even begin to describe most people’s feelings around town.

Messinger Mortuaries collecting cell phones for troops

Recently, Messinger Mortuaries became the exclusive veterans and family memorial care (VFMC) provider in Maricopa and Gila counties, announce Paula and Cora Messinger, owners of Messinger Mortuaries, Cemeteries and Crematories.

No. 1 hit highlighted fancy fiddling

Sometimes a person just can’t be in two places at once — as darned much as he wishes he could be.

Level 3 sex offender alert issued for Payson man

Level 3 sex offender Andrew David Culp, 24, notified police that he is living at 1115 N. Monte Rosa Lane.

West champs a tough opening foe for Lady Longhorn softball team

Just how good is the Estrella Foothills Wolves softball team the Lady Longhorns meet this evening, May 7, in the first round of the 3A state tournament?

PWGA 2010 season starts with a bang

It’s easy to see that Payson Women’s Golf Association secretary Claudia Bullard is excited about her favorite sport.

Horns set for East track showdown

Very few observers are picking the Longhorns to win the 3A East boys track and field title.

Junior spring turkey hunt a big success

Trout fishing, finding elk antler sheds, and, of course, luring “old tom turkey” with an artificial call highlight springtime in the high country of Arizona

Payson’s crime index falls for third year

As the economic activity fell across the Rim Country for a second year, some may assume crime would rise, as more people have time to commit crimes and an increased motive to do so.

Colorado man wins 50-mile Zane Grey

Ultrarunner makes treacherous trek in time of 9.40:55

Scott Jaime, a 40-year-old Colorado ultrarunner, captured first place in what is known as the country’s most difficult 50-mile race.

Tonto Basin man shot in face by neighbor

A Tonto Basin man was shot in the face by a neighbor Wednesday morning after a long standing dispute over various things including property lines.

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Archery shop hits the mark

No longer do Rim Country hunters have to truck all the way down to the Valley for bow and arrow supplies after Jeremy and Kristy Ulmer opened Chasin A Dream Outfitters Archery Pro Shop Wednesday.

Square and round dance festival coming

The Zane Grey Twirlers are sponsoring the 30th annual Square and Round Dance Festival June 11 and June 12 at the Tonto Apache Recreation Center, located southeast of the Mazatzal Hotel & Casino

Election pamphlets lists incorrect polling places

Registered voters in roughly 7,300 Gila County households were instructed to go to an incorrect polling place for the May 18 Special Election as part of directions included with state publicity pamphlets mailed to voters last month.

Friday is deadline to request early May election ballot

Arizona registered voters who’d like to request a Special Election early ballot must do so by 5 p.m. today — Friday, May 7.

TV executives must think we’re a gaggle of deaf clones

I have always been grateful that I grew up during the era that preceded television.

Ideal superintendent replacement

If the current superintendent of schools for the Payson Unified School District (PUSD) departs the area after presiding over the rearrangement of the chairs on the Titanic, a logical replacement would be the recently deposed high school principal, Mr. Roy Sandoval.

Campgrounds, roads opening on national forest

Spring has finally arrived and Coconino National Forest recreation managers are re-opening campgrounds that have been closed for the winter season. Some forest roads are still closed due to heavy snow accumulation and will further delay reopening of several campgrounds.

Obama was born in Hawaii

Arizona’s reputation for ignorance will only continue to grow so long as papers like yours publish letters by “birthers” while making no attempt to correct nutty rumors.

Bothered by jail comments

The April 20 Roundup contains a couple of quotations that bother me.

Thanks for the help

The Time Out, Inc. board and staff sincerely thank all businesses and individuals of Payson who purchased “Magic, Magic, Magic” tickets, so that area elementary children could attend the show for free!

An A- for Allen, an F+ for Brown, and a D for Konopnicki

According to the Goldwater Institute; Senator Allen has a rating of A- in the performance of her job.

Sales tax important for our students

Having been an educator and coach for 30 years, I have noticed how people respond to requests to financially support education or other community services

Community Almanac

The Payson Education Center Student Council will be holding a benefit yard sale from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday, May 7 in the PEC parking lot, 112 W. Cedar Lane.

Shortcut by Swift semi-truck driver goes wrong

Although Swift was stamped all over the truck, the driver of a semi carrying recycled paper wasn’t so quick on the uptake Saturday after following his GPS down Fossil Creek Road.

Payson school superintendent withdraws application

Payson Unified School District Superintendent Casey O’Brien has withdrawn his application to head the Roosevelt Elementary School District in Phoenix.

Join us on First Friday

There’s a lot to be excited about this spring. As usual, there are the babies. Puppies and kittens are always so much fun to watch.

Colonial Cabinets recognized for top sales

Only a year after becoming a dealer of Showplace Wood Products, Colonial Cabinets and Millwork is a nationwide top seller and was recently recognized with a President’s Club Award for their exceptional sales records.

Honoring mothers

Once again, Payson Jewelers is doing its part to honor mothers for Mother’s Day by sponsoring its annual “Why My Mom is Best” essay contest.

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Nossek leads Lady Horn charge to regionals

Payson High School senior Maddie Nossek travels today, May 7, to Show Low for the East championships toting an impressive load of regional track and field rankings.

County replaces culverts in Tonto Village

Tonto Village was increased by one this past week with the arrival of Sarah Ruby Morris. Sarah arrived on April 30 and weighing in at 7 pounds, 7 ounces

PS district moves to buy well

The Pine Strawberry Water Improvement District board has come to a tentative agreement to purchase the Milk Ranch Well from owners Ray Pugel and Robert Randall for $400,000.

ASU campus in Payson now ‘most probable’

Investors, donors in ‘watershed’ meeting pledge $500 million to build university campus here

Investors and donors have pledged $500 million to build a four-year college campus in Payson, representing a “watershed” in the year-long effort, according to Payson Mayor Kenny Evans.

Wednesday, May 5

Tonto Basin man shot

A Tonto Basin man was shot in the face by a neighbor after an apparent argument Wednesday.

Pamper mom on Mother’s Day

Pampering mom on Mother’s Day is really pretty easy.

What’s in a signature?

When I was a kid I loved to go out to spring training games, always with one thing in mind: getting an autograph from someone wearing my favorite team’s uniform.

A surprise adventure

In the 1990s I was set to give a speech in Washington, D.C. for a company with which I was employed.

Hunt Family Fiddlers close TCCA season

The Tonto Community Concert Association (TCCA) will lower the curtain on its 2009-2010 season with the Hunt Family Fiddlers — an ensemble of world-ranked Irish dancers and fiery fiddlers — Tuesday, May 11.

Get Inked!

“Got inked!” my friend exclaimed on Facebook one day with new pictures. The tribal design on his arm was fresh with hues of red in perfect color and precision.

Ansari will host Movie Awards

Once again, the divine Chris Pine gets a paragraph in this column and headlines elsewhere.

How much exercise do you need?

What is the amount of exercise recommended for a man or woman of 55?

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HIGH-FLYING FUN

Retired aircraft mechanic builds a light sport plane

Jerry Lynch declares he has the bug. An all encompassing high flying sickness for aviation. Flying he says fondly, “is like a disease.”

Visit New England in the fall

The Canada/New England fall cruises offer a variety of lengths and ports of call. Prime cabin location is selling out fast. Since all these cruises stop in several Canadian ports, like Halifax and Quebec City, passports are required.

Tuesday, May 4

Third anniversary for First Friday is May 7

Main Street in Payson is where the town’s first commercial center developed, with residences, the school and church growing up around it.

See ‘new’ Cancer Closet Thursday

Remember May 6 the “new” Cancer Closet will have an open house from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Stop by and see the gift closet and learn how this incredible program provides free services to women undergoing chemotherapy.

Clear out old medicine

What is in your medicine cabinet? If yours is anything like ours, there are probably lots of things that are obsolete in there.

Gardening conference coming to Payson

The 11th Annual Arizona Highlands Garden Conference will be held Saturday, Aug. 28 at the Mazatzal Hotel & Casino. Also offered will be Sustainability Demonstration Tours on Friday, Aug. 27 at different locations around Payson.

PHS senior earns Coca-Cola $10,000 scholarship

Nicole Scott, a senior at Payson High School has been recognized as one of the country’s most exceptional high school seniors by the Coca-Cola Scholars Foundation and has been awarded a $10,000 Regional Coca-Cola Scholarship for college.

Volunteers sought for First Things First Partnership Council

If you are a Gila County resident interested in helping our youngest children arrive at kindergarten healthy and ready to succeed, the First Things First Gila Regional Partnership Council needs you.

Feature Teacher

Outer experience is a reflection of inner reality.

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Class offers students Web development skills

The chatroom dating service Plentyoffish.com holds the title of most lucrative click-through advertising site. Google had to write its operator a check for $901,000 — two months worth of payment — after Google’s electronic funds transfer bounced, according to a blog run by Plentoffish.com’s founder, Marcus Frind.

Skeptics challenge need for jump in water rates

Walker defends need for 25 percent increase in Payson’s water rates to provide money to upgrade system

Last year, an aging water main under Main Street crack, split and turned a big chunk of the street into a messy sinkhole.

Climate changes can be a hazard to your health

I see that the recent news media reports that the enviro wackos are at it again. They are trying their utmost to save their sinking ship, like the Titanic, it’s a lost cause.

Yes vote urged for Prop. 100

Payson voters are receiving their ballots for Proposition 100.

Opposed to Town of Payson’s economic development position

An open letter to Mayor Kenny Evans: I am writing to express my concern over the possibility of appointing Mike Vogel to a paid economic development position on the Town staff.

Blue ribbon committee is faddish

Mr. Lemon’s use of 30 years of experience to support his views is not the constructive criticism needed in this situation. I have 35-plus years of experience as a teacher, principal, assistant superintendent and university instructor. Perhaps, I have as much credibility as he.

Water rate increase: timing is everything

Timing, they say, is everything. So on Thursday, the Payson Town Council will consider a slimmed down water rate hike — 10 percent. Now, that’s just half as bad as the first proposal — which asked for more like 20 percent.

Community Almanac

Frontier Elementary School is hosting a 50 percent off book sale May 4 through May 7.

Christopher Kohl’s Fire Department torches building as training exercise

The Christopher Kohl’s Fire Department recently performed intensive fire training drills using a donated cabin to brush up on firefighting skills and possibly lower homeowners’ insurance rates.

Two carfuls of illegal immigrants caught by deputies

In what appears to be two unrelated incidents, two carfuls of illegal immigrants were discovered by deputies last Tuesday on Highway 87 at the exact same location, several hours apart.

GCC president wants special assistant

One month after the Gila Community College board opposed hiring a part-time accountant, board chairman Bob Ashford suggested hiring an executive liaison that would report to him.

Tease photo

State first round awaits Lady Longhorns

The Lady Longhorns are advancing to the 3A state softball tournament thanks to a 13-10 East regional tournament victory over the Round Valley Elks.

Town council to consider smaller water rate hike

The Payson Town Council on Thursday will consider a 10 percent increase in water rates, about half the rate increase included in the “worst case scenario.”

Will the health care bill further hurt the health of the real estate market?

There is some confusion out there as to what the new health care bill’s impact will be on real estate.

JRE principal to double as high school AD

Julia Randall Elementary School Principal Rob Varner will act as Payson High School’s athletic director next year, the school board decided recently.

Putting health into perspective

A once debunked mini-golf center is now home to an all-natural weight loss and health center fit for anyone looking to feel better physically and mentally or just grab a bite to eat for lunch.

Lobos, Horns will clash once again

Payson Longhorn and Snowflake Lobo players might soon grow weary of peering into one another’s mugs.

Spring sports teams enter final frays

Beginning this week is the portion of the spring sports season that prep coaches and players most look forward to. For fans, it’s the most exciting part of the campaign.

Fall hunting and trapping regulations available online

Hunters, it’s that time of the year again. The deadline to apply for an Arizona fall hunt permit-tag, issued through the draw, is 7 p.m., Tuesday, June 8. The 2010-11 Arizona Hunting and Trapping Regulations, and application forms, are now available at the Arizona Game and Fish Department’s Web site at www.azgfd.gov/draw.

Horn baseball team’s shot at state done in by Cats, power points

A screwy power points system and a 15-9 loss to Show Low squashed the Payson Longhorns’ dreams of advancing to the 3A state baseball tournament.

Popeye flexes forearms at Payson Golf Course

As if he was wolfing down spinach and tooting his corncob pipe much like his cartoon namesake, Popeye Clay hooked up with Jim Dalgleish to take first place in a Payson Men’s Golf Association two-man best ball tournament held April 28 at Payson Golf Course.

2010 T-ball registration still open

Although the original registration deadline, May 3, for town-sponsored youth T-ball has passed, recreation coordinator Joseph Harris says parents can continue to sign up their children during a late period this week.

School district’s health costs go up 28 percent

Payson schools’ health premiums will rise 28 percent next year, even after the school board approved switching health carriers Monday night.

Boat overturns, family rescued

Three adults, two children and a dog nearly drowned in Roosevelt Lake Sunday after their boat capsized in high waves, leaving them stranded in icy cold water for nearly two hours.

Cash, donations needed for flood victims

The repercussions of the powerful winter storms and flooding that scrapped across Arizona in January continue to be felt in Gila County and among the residents of Black Canyon City, Yavapai County.

Monday, May 3

Construction resumes on Highway 87 between Payson and Pine

On May 3, the Arizona Department of Transportation (ADOT) will resume construction on highway 87 between Payson and Pine.