Early Morning Is A Great Time Of Day

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For some folks, the best time of the day is early in the morning, when both the mind and body are fresh and the excitement of a new day lies ahead. For others, the majesty of a paint-splashed sunset, followed by the peace that nightfall brings is what brings them their most happiness.

For me, very early morning is the time of day I love the most.

After finishing one of my early morning jogs this week and on my cool-down walk home along the western edge of Green Valley Lake, I felt a real appreciation just to be alive.

Dawn was just beginning to break in the eastern sky, as moonglow guided me to along toward my “stretching” bench, the plastic-coated metal settee that has been my after-workout buddy for the better part of the last decade.

I was alone in the park that morning, the golden silence broken only by the lake’s two aerating fountains and a dozen or so Canada geese, honking their advancement as their out-stretched wings guided them to their water nests.

It was a crisp, clear, late fall morning, but I couldn’t see the banks of the opposite shore. The cool air from above, colliding with the warm, moist air from the water below, billowed mist upward into the ebony sky.

For me, early morning is a wonderful, wonderful time of the day.

This week’s music trivia question is: Can you name the artist who recorded the 1957 hit “Wonderful, Wonderful”?

This California-raised crooner began studying opera at age 13 and later received a track scholarship to San Francisco State College.

He was invited to the U.S. Track and Field Olympic tryouts, but chose a singing career instead.

He initially recorded as a jazz-styled singer, but Columbia executive Mitch Miller switched him to singing pop ballads. He broke onto the charts in 1957 with the top 20 hit “Wonderful, Wonderful.” Among his other 42 charted hits are “The Twelfth Of Never,” “It’s Not For Me To Say” and his two No. 1 hits “Chances Are” and “Too Much, Too Little, Too Late” — a duet with Deniece Williams.

Is this pop balladeer A) Brook Benton, B) Tommy Edwards, C) Johnny Mathis, or D) Bill Cosby?

This week, if you are the fourth caller and have the right answer, you’ll win a $15 dollar gift certificate to the Crosswinds Restaurant — a nice place to relax with good food and a picturesque view of the Rim.

Now, let’s see how we did with last week’s music trivia question: Which of the following statements is true about Charlie Chaplin? (Who was the subject in last week’s David Pomeranz “Chaplin: A Life in Concert.”) A) He was 5 feet, 5 inches tall, B) His dead body was stolen from the Corsier-Sur-Vevey cemetery in Switzerland and held for ransom for 11 weeks, until the thieves were caught, C) He once entered a Charlie Chaplin look-alike contest and finished third, or D) All of the above?

The correct answer was D) All of the above.

Congratulations to this past week’s first time trivia winner, Mary Mastin, who won two complimentary tickets to last Tuesday’s David Pomeranz concert, courtesy of the Tonto Community Concert Association.

A little about Mary: She was born and raised in Milo, Maine and lived most of her life in America’s most northeastern state. She met her husband, Bill, in the late 1960s as the two were about to board a plane for Europe. They have been married for 40 years and have a daughter who lives in White Fish, Montana.

After finishing a long career in education, first as an elementary school teacher and then as a guidance counselor, Mary convinced Bill that wintering in Arizona would be better than enduring the long, icy winters in Maine.

While traveling throughout our Grand Canyon state in the early 2000s, the Mastins discovered Payson, where they spent the following three winters. For the past seven years they have made Payson their permanent residence.

Mary enjoys leading a very active retired lifestyle — kayaking, bicycling, hiking and spending time with her two grandchildren. When she finds time to relax, she enjoys listening to classical and folk music.

When I asked her who her favorite artists are, she responded, “After my daughter, I would say Finnish composer Jean Sibelius and then John Denver.”

Last, new pictures that have been added to my Web site are from the Thanksgiving Community Dinner, hosted by the Elks Lodge, and Pine’s Festival of Lights.

Have a great week!

DJ Craig

Phone: 468-1482

Web site: www.DJCraigInPayson.com

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