Four Visiting Raccoons Were Hard To Get Out Of The House


Whew! The whirlwind of this past week is over for the time being.

All of our visiting family left on Monday. The week was exciting, hectic, and just plain wonderful to have them here, but where does all the energy come from? It was non-stop activity with non-stop wet towels, wet shoes and running out of hot water and deciding who would be next to use the bathroom. (I only have one!) I wouldn’t have traded any minute of it for the peace and quiet, because that always comes after they leave.


Last week, Linda Stailey in Tonto Village II was rudely awakened from a nap in her easy chair when she heard a strange noise coming from her back room. She got up to investigate what the noise was and was flabbergasted by what she saw.

There were four raccoons coming in her back door looking for food. Linda had her back door open for air circulation since it had been such a hot and muggy day.

She had quite a time shooing them outside again because they scattered! She finally managed to get them all back outside and vowed then and there not to leave her back door open and take a snooze too.

Hellsgate Fire Department Auxiliary

The Fireflies manned a booth at the Bashas’ Festival this past Saturday.

There were T-shirts and caps for sale along with pre-sale tickets for the annual Labor Day barbecue in Tonto Village at the fire station on Sept. 3.

The event was a huge success and Bashas’ manager Bob Mikelby would like to see the Fireflies come back in the fall for another festival, sometime near the start of the holiday season. A few of the Hellsgate firefighters also checked blood pressure for the people at the festival. Firefighters Martha Bartlett and Zack Hornung spent the whole day with the Fireflies. Thank you to both of you for your time.

Chairperson Penny Wells of the cookbook, “Fireflies Can Cook,” has requested recipes from anyone who would like to be a part of the cookbook that will be available some time around Labor Day of next year.

Penny can be reached by e-mail at: Or bring the recipes to the barbecue bake sale. Also, co-chairperson Vicki Grootegoed can be reached at:

Since there will be so many visitors to the Village, now would be a great time to have that yard sale you’ve been thinking about. Why not put up a balloon on your gate and then the Fireflies can tell the visitors to check out the yard with balloons.

You may be able to get rid of some of your stuff that you don’t need anymore. The barbecue will be going on from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m., so that gives plenty of time for the visitors to look around.

The next meeting of the Fireflies will be at 9:30 a.m., Monday, Sept. 12 at the Tonto Village fire station. Elections for president and treasurer will be held at the meeting.

The annual thank you luncheon for the Fireflies of the barbecue will be held on Friday, Sept. 9 at 11 a.m. at the casino.

Hellsgate Fire Department

On Friday, Aug. 19, Safeway held an event to raise money for the Muscular Dystrophy Association and their goal was to raise $10,000 dollars.

Hellsgate helped to collect money for them to meet their goal.

The helpers were firefighters Thorry Smith, Rick Heron , Bobbi Doss, Jake Gardner, Dale Hayes, Travis Kilbourne and Jeff Yunkens. Even the Hellsgate mascot Dalmatian, “Black Jack” was on hand to greet the contributors. A big thank you to the Hellsgate firefighters.

A basic EMT “refresher” course is scheduled to begin on the weekend of Aug. 24 and 25 and again on Oct. 1 and 2. All interested participants are to call the Star Valley station and talk with Karen at 928-474-3835 to sign up.

The Arizona State Fire School sessions will be held Sept. 7 through Sept. 11 in Mesa.

Several of the Hellsgate firefighters will be attending this year which is the anniversary of Sept. 11, 2001. Please keep this day in remembrance of all the people who lost their lives from this horrible terrorist attack.

Great news for firefighter and former liaison to the Fireflies, Jeff Yunkens. He has passed and been accepted in the initial testing for the paramedic program and will start his schooling next month.

Congratulations to you Jeff, we are all behind you and we have every confidence that you will get through the very difficult program to become a great paramedic.

The next Hellsgate fire board meeting will be held at 5:30 p.m., Wednesday, Sept. 14 at the Star Valley station. The meetings are always open to the public, and only last an hour or so. Spend a little bit of your time to find out all the happenings of the Hellsgate Fire Department.

Double D Doings

Last Tuesday evening the gals played nine-ball with mixed winners from Tonto Village, Christopher Creek and Houston Mesa. Payge Ferriera shot for first place followed by Ethel Cain and Nanci Olson shooting for third.

Thursday evening for the mixed group of eight-ball players showed a whopping 13 players! Cliff Landrum who has been absent from the games for a while, shot for first place. Tim Reed showed off his stuff and took second place. Daniel Reese came in third place. Congratulations to all the winners.


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