Weather Has Been Delightful For Residents, Visitors


The weather has been so perfect that many of our part-time homeowners have spent their weekends in the village, some enjoying the cool breezes and others riding on their quads and dirt bikes.

The problem with that is the loud noise those bikes make, not to mention the dust they kick up. They need to realize that there are full-time residents here that are very sensitive to that kind of noise and dusty air. There’s a whole big forest out there!

There were also gunshots heard, with small weapons and rifle shots that were very loud! The gunfire caused the cattle that are still hanging around inside the forest to get very skittish and head for the houses around the village. Some homes had their gates open and the cattle just walked right in.

The gunfire sounded too close to the village. The shooters must remember that they are not supposed to be shooting too close to the houses in the village.

There have been hunters with great luck this hunting season, one gal had been trying for 10 years and finally hit the jackpot, bagging an enormous bull elk with a giant rack. Another hunter bagged a black bear not far from the village up on top of Turkey Ridge. Congratulations on your successful hunts.

Hellsgate Fire Department

The fire department received a generous donation from the ‘Sleep America’ Company. The fire station put in a request for a donation a while back and the request for the donation was accepted. Debbie Gaby, executive director of the headquarters in Arizona, contacted Hellsgate and said that they would donate five extra-long twin beds for the firefighters. The beds turned out to be quite a gift money-wise, and ‘Sleep America’ is to be commended for their generosity.

Fire Leadership I will be offered on Friday, Oct. 21 -23 for firefighters who wish to become captain. This class is required by the state. Call Karen at the administrative office in Star Valley at station #21, (928) 474-3835.

Congratulations to firefighter John Ceja. John is now the permanent firefighter for station #22. John will be on duty Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Two new volunteers have qualified for firefighters in Hellsgate. Harry Weldon lives in Tonto Village III and will be working out of station #22. J.P. Matchner is the second volunteer firefighter and he will be working out of station #23 in Mead and Collins Ranch. J.P. and Kim will be celebrating their 18th wedding anniversary on Sunday, Oct. 9. Congratu-lations to you both. Station #23 now has sixfirefighters working at Mead Ranch. That’s great news.

Certificates of service will be given by the Hellsgate fire board to Zack Hornung, Ben Doss, Jeff Plante and Mike McWilliams. As of Oct. 21 , each of the firefighters have served at least two years. Congratulations to each.

Remember, the administrative office in Star Valley will be closed on Monday Oct. 10 in observance of Columbus Day.

Please use the sites for dumping your pine needles, etc. at the Highway 260 site on Saturdays from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. There will be no more brush pick-up in Tonto Village and the surrounding communities for the rest of the year.

The next Hellsgate Fire Board meeting will be on Wednesday, Oct. 12 at station #21 at 5:30 p.m. The meetings are always open to the public and public comments are welcome.

Hellsgate Fireflies Auxiliary

The last Fireflies meeting of the year will be held on Monday, Oct. 10 at the Tonto Village Fire station on Mathews Lane. The meeting will start at 10 a.m. and all interested ladies are invited, and most especially the gals from Star Valley and the surrounding communities.

The auxiliary is not just for the ladies in Tonto Village. Hellsgate encompasses a very large area with many outlying communities, and the Fireflies would like your participation. If you would like to know more about the Fireflies, contact Janet at (928) 478-9935, Joan at (928) 478-4667, Linda at (928) 478-4641, or Karen at (928) 478-0445.

The Fireflies will be hosting their last function of the year on Oct. 20. It will be a Firefighter Appreciation Dinner held at station #21 in Star Valley. The Fireflies are serving pulled pork sandwiches and each person is to bring a side dish.

Food will be served at 6 p.m. The firefighters are urged to bring their families along for good food and conversation. The food chairperson, Linda Stailey, has picked her people to help make this a successful annual event. The Fireflies need your recipes for the cookbook, “Fireflies Can Cook” that will be coming out next September, so gather your very favorites and email them to or or pennykaye before Dec. 31.


Oct. 13 is Rick Washurn’s big day. Rick is a firefighter in the Mead, Collins Ranch area at station 23. Our son, Bill Snyder, Jr., also will celebrate his birthday that day.

On Oct. 14, Betty Koutz, Harvey Poyner and John Watson of Tonto Village I will celebrate their birthdays. On Oct. 17, Linda Stailey of Tonto Village II will add another candle to her cake. On Oct. 18, Bobette ‘Bobbie’ Davis adds another candle to her birthday cake. There are exactly 86,400 seconds in your birthday. Enjoy every one of those seconds.


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