Barber Shop A Hot Spot For Community News


The talk at Al’s

After discovering that one of the hot spots for finding out what’s happening in Strawberry and Pine is Al’s Barber Shop, I dropped by and discovered that local problems are quickly dispatched, the country’s problems take a bit longer, and the problems of the world are still a work in progress. All this happens amid the snips of Al’s scissors.

The shop was again voted the Best of Rim Country and a grinning Al happily expressed his pleasure with his clients.

I have to follow up on the neat ’39 Chevy in the parking lot!

Student enrollment up

Principal Mike Clark reports that the Pine Elementary School enrollment is up to 146. The fourth-, fifth- and sixth-graders met for a presentation of the use of meth and its consequences. Guy Jones from Payson Regional Medical Center, Sheriff’s Deputy Pete Licavoli, Tony McDaniel and Terry Philips with the Gila County Narcotics Task Force, and Sheriff’s Department Media Liaison Lu Dubois were on hand Tuesday morning, March 8 with PowerPoint slides that certainly didn’t remind your intrepid columnist of her grade school years! How sad that our children need to know these things and how good it is to know that caring adults bring them this difficult information.

A friend commented this past week that if we complain about the cost of education, we certainly didn’t want to know the cost of stupidity. Even our school children know taking drugs is stupid!

Favorite pies

The Strawberry Lodge has been serving wonderful pies for almost 60 years. Of course, the hands down favorite is strawberry, followed by blueberry. There are two others that sounded luscious — buttermilk pie, a custard-like pie with a sugar cookie taste, and the red, white and blue of the American Sampler. It features layers of strawberries, apples and blueberries. Yummy.

Pine library is a busy place

Visitors are definitely not limited to checking out books or DVDs. There are a multitude of activities for children and benefits for us older folks. Did you know that if you are disabled or ill and cannot get to the library, they’ll come to you? Check out their Books on Wheels program. In the true good-heartedness of Rim folk, you can exchange coupons. Clip for your neighbors as well and get those you can use in the exchange.

There are now over 100 new books appropriate for teens and tweens in their own special section.

Click on activities.htm for a lot more information, or stop by on Randall Place just west of Highway 87. And volunteers are always welcome.

Currently here are only some of the happenings at the Pine library:

Spring Break Movie Madness at 1 p.m., Thursday, March 17, showing “Scooby-Doo! Curse of the Lake Monster.” Bring a pillow to sit on the floor. Refreshments are provided.

Book discussion from 10:30 a.m. to noon, Thursday, April 14. Under discussion will be “Hopi Summer: Letters from Ethyl to Maud” by Carolyn O’Bag Davis. Refreshments are provided.

Sign up for a drawing class! Learn to draw cartoons in 3-D on Thursday, March 24 in the Activity Center. There will be two age-appropriate classes; kindergarten through third-graders from 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m., and fourth- through eighth-graders from 1 p.m. to 2:30 p.m. Jeannette Sindik will be presenting “Drawing the Manner of Mark Kistler.”

The latest new thing at the library is an expanding Wi-Fi area. There will be more places to sit with your laptop, and even those sitting in their cars to log in can come in and find space. Our little library is truly a treasure to the community.

Spring break means a cruise to Ensenada

Dave and Bonnie Burkhardt are taking their son Mike, his wife Shelly, and their two grandchildren, Kiley, 10, and Tyler, 8, of Gilbert, on a cruise from Long Beach, Calif. to Ensenada, Mexico. They will be boarding their cruise ship about the time you dear folks are reading this. Bonnie, one of the cooks at the Senior Dining Room, reports that while this is her first cruise, it is also a warm-up cruise. It turns out that a cruise through Alaska’s Inland Passage is on her bucket list. How fun!

“Fire on the Rim”

No, it’s not a forest fire. It’s a mountain bike race to raise funds to maintain the firebreak around our communities. Scheduled for Aug. 6, it may seem early to alert you, but this a vitally important issue for those of us who live in the forest. Stay tuned for more information from Katie Calderone and Mike Brandt.

Fire department chaplain

Father Norman Burke and I had a nice chat at Al’s. We discussed the various challenges of serving as ministers in our communities. It is good to know our fire department has a chaplain. It is more than helpful when family members are facing a traumatic situation. The fire department handles the situation and their own “Father Joe” serves the people who are affected.

Keeping me informed

Again, I remind you dear folks to e-mail me at with stories and events you would like to share with your neighbors. Stories about people and what they are up to are my favorite to read. How about you? Keep them coming, folks. You are what make this job a real blast.


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