Star Valley has wrestled with one question since incorporation: is there enough drinkable water to last? Answers have proven elusive. The town could go after Blue Ridge water, test wells for contamination and further monitor well water levels. Now, Star Valley officials hope the council will finally make its mind up at Tuesday’s council meeting. “Right now they are as clear as mud,” said Town Manager Tim Grier.
Dandelions! They must have been put here on earth just so small children could pick them without being scolded. Their saucy blooms are among the first to welcome spring. Dandelions grow anywhere — roadsides, open meadows, cracks in sidewalks, yards — especially yards! There is a golden band of them along the north side of Highway 260 in front of Bashas’. Although it is commonly believed that early colonists brought the dandelion to this country, there are at least seven species native to North America. The common dandelion, which is often considered a garden pest, is an offspring of those introduced by European immigrants. They prized the early spring leaves as garden vegetables and made wine from the blossoms. Dried, ground roots were used for medicine. Dandelions are rich in potassium, which stimulates the production of bile and may be helpful in the treatment of liver disease. In the late 1800s, dandelions were in such demand that they were advertised in seed catalogues. The name is taken from the French dents de lion (lion’s teeth) referring to the jagged outline of the leaves.
Payson pilot uses paper airplanes and a video to give ambitions of fifth-graders wings
Although they have no children of their own, Rory and Donna Hansen volunteer their time to teach fifth-graders in Wayne Gorry’s Julia Randall Elementary (JRE) classroom about flying airplanes for a living and the importance of reaching dreams through education and positive personal values. Rory works as a pilot for Southwest Airlines. The company has an “Adopt A Pilot” program for fifth-grade classes. More than 1,000 pilots nationwide spend four weeks a year teaching kids the F.L.I.G.H.T. curriculum. F.L.I.G.H.T. stands for fearlessness, leadership, imagination, gratitude, honesty and tenacity. The program teaches fifth-graders science, math, geography, writing, and presentation skills through a set of fun exercises.
Senate candidate blows through Payson with blast at federal spending, regulation
Republican Senate candidate front runner Jeff Flake brought his campaign back to Payson for the second time in three weeks with a sharply drawn attack on federal regulations, the Democratic Senate, President Barack Obama and federal spending. “We’re closer to the edge of the cliff than we’ve ever been,” said the five-term Republican congressman seeking to replace retiring Sen. Jon Kyl. “Unfortunately, Congress tends to not act only when we’re halfway over the edge staring into the abyss. I don’t think we know where that edge of the cliff is. We could have a treasury auction and there are just no buyers — and China says, ‘we have enough of your debt.’”
“A win is a win is a win,” an obviously relieved Lady Longhorn softball coach Will Dunman lamented after watching his team squeak by in what was expected to be an outmanned Miami Vandal nine. Although the Lady Longhorns, now 23-3, are accustomed to winning games by much larger margins — sometimes run ruling opponents — the clash on April 12 against the Vandals in Miami turned into a seven-inning barnburner almost no one expected. The Lady Horns received the usual standout pitching from Arianna Paulson, who struck out 18 in a no-hitter, but PHS batters couldn’t generate the offense needed for a runaway win.
High school students stage lively rendition of Elvis Presley tunes
This weekend the Payson High School thespians donned their blue suede shoes, tuned up their wireless mics, and did it their way for three rousing performances of the musical, “All Shook Up.” Students entertained laughing audiences three nights running with a live band in the pit below the stage, intricately choreographed dance moves and belted-out songs based on Elvis Presley’s music.
Needs mark to run with division’s best
Lady Longhorn speedster Morgan Chilson’s chances for winning a 100-meter Division III state gold medal most likely hinge on her breaking the 13-second barrier. Attaining the much-coveted mark is what it will likely take to outrun some of the state’s best sprinters, including Lieke Elberson of Show Low, St. Johns star Savannah Brown, Estrella Foothills’ Jasmine Pratt and Darreyl Woodson of Higley. All have edged past 13 seconds this season.
Payson man faced frustrations in trying to rescue injured niece in Italy
William Flower received the call from his brother-in-law last August that started him on a frightening and frustrating effort to enlist the help of the federal government to locate and help his injured niece. But after a maddening tour of the bureaucracy — he enlisted the surprising help of the Russian Embassy and a local congressman to struggle through to a happy ending of a scary story. “We (the U.S. government) don’t do a good job keeping an eye on Americans overseas,” said Flower. His brother-in-law called about Flower’s niece, who had just been in a serious accident in Italy. He told Flower he had received a disjointed and poorly connected phone call from the hospital in Milan from the Italian family with which his daughter had been staying.
Winn dominates on hill and at bat
Payson High’s chances of earning a berth in the season-ending Division III state tournament took a big-time hit with a 10-0 loss to the Show Low Cougars. “We’ll have to be very lucky now to make the state playoffs,” coach Scott Novack said after the April 11 loss to the homestanding Cougars. Although the defeat was disheartening, the team rebounded the following day to soundly thump Miami 18-3 in just three innings.
The emergence of Anthony Smith as one of Division III’s best golfers renders the Longhorns a state championship contender when the final tournament unfolds May 11 and 12 at Antelope Golf Course near Prescott. His steady play this season, combined with the talents of Jeffrey Kelley, Dean Harpe and Tyler Apps, gives Payson High a four-pronged attack that will be tough for any Division III team to contend with. Smith flexed his links muscle April 4 at the We-Ko-Pa golf course where he led Payson to a first-place finish and tied Kelley for the tournament’s low medalist honors.
Lady Longhorn deep pit barbecue benefit dinners have long teased the palates of sports fans and boosters and have been a festive highlight of the spring sports season since local softball aficionado Charlene Creach-Hunt-Brown founded them nine years ago. The popularity is not only due to the delicious meals prepared by cowboy cook extraordinaire Albert Hunt, but also to the small-town camaraderie and good will. The next benefit is set for 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., Friday, April 20 near the concession stand on the south side of Lady Longhorn diamond.
Gotta love this town. Consider, for the moment, a telling statistic buried in today’s front-page story about the effort to protect children from abuse and neglect. On the face of it: The numbers are dispiriting. Some 10,000 children languish in the state’s foster care system, removed from their homes as a result of abuse and neglect. That includes 80 children in Gila County.
The Community Yard Sale, sponsored by Community Presbyterian Church, is from 7 a.m. to noon, Saturday, May 12. It is an outreach of the church to the community, giving a great venue for residents to make a few dollars at a very low cost with advertising handled by the church. A 10-foot-by-19-foot space can be rented for just $10. All proceeds from this event go to the Community Presbyterian Church Deacons Assistance Program that serves families in need.
Mickie Nye, candidate for the Gila County recorder’s office, says he wants to restore the department’s customer service, but first he’ll have to cope with some high-profile mudslinging in the race for a normally low-key office. Nye recently spoke to the Democratic women’s club about his bid to become the new recorder. “We’ve heard several complaints about the recorder’s office,” said Nye. Among them are poor customer service, budgetary waste and a political agenda.
Mock Trial is for those who love to act and argue. Payson High School has a few students who love to do both in the club with a team named Payson Procinctus. For the first time in its six-year history, the team competed at the Mock Trial State Competition on March 26. As a further honor, Payson students Tyler McMinimy and Tyler Aguirre were named to the eight-member all-state team.
While I guess it will be nice to have wide two-lane concrete bridges spanning mostly dry washes on the 1.5-lane-wide gravel Control Road, I think the money could have been better spent elsewhere.
First, I would like to thank the new editor for providing a different approach with the “Point-Counterpoint” section of the Opinion page.
I see that the chief of police reported to the Payson Roundup that his department had been investigating a “speakeasy” on Tyler Parkway for three months and had made a big bust.
I appreciate the two front page articles in the April 13 edition which makes so clear the decisions that are facing us in the upcoming elections.
The recent rally to stop the selling of so-called “designer drugs” was a wonderful example of what people who care can really do.
CASA seeks volunteers to safeguard children – and people willing to report abuse, neglect
Memorize this: 888-SOS-Child. Got it? Good. You just made Gila County Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA) Coordinator Katrisha Stuler very happy. Stuler wants to use April’s Child Abuse Awareness Month to get as many people as possible to memorize the number for the Child Abuse Hotline and use it if they suspect a child is being abused or neglected. Although using the letter code for 888-767-24453 has an extra number — it will still go through and alert authorities. “You don’t have to be sure, you just have to have a reasonable suspicion. If we don’t put children first, it will never change.” Still, she understands some people don’t call for fear of what might happen.
One of the nation’s most wanted fugitives may be living in Rim Country, federal officials have reminded local police. Despite the lack of recent sightings of murder suspect Robert Fisher, the FBI wants officials to stay alert. The Coconino County Sheriff’s Office passed that message onto some 80 Blue Ridge residents Saturday by e-mail. The blast message from Deputy Richard Shouse came just days after the 11-year anniversary of a crime in which Scottsdale police say Fisher slit the throats of his wife and two children, and then set their home on fire and vanished. Today, the FBI believes Fisher may be living in the Blue Ridge Reservoir area as a hermit or squatting in a trailer, cabin or an old home in the woods. Shouse wrote that the FBI had recently contacted him about the case. FBI special agent Manual Johnson, Phoenix media coordinator, said the FBI intended for the notice to go to local law enforcement, not the news media or residents.
Lots of water. No new rate increases. Under budget and on time. So why don’t you all love me? That’s the gist of Saturday’s Pine-Strawberry Water Improvement District’s two-hour public hearing that resulted in the approval of a $3 million budget for the 2012-13 fiscal year, which includes a $128,000 investment in a fourth, deep well. Despite the seeming gush of good news for the once water-crippled community, the tone of Saturday’s meeting at times seemed defensive, with repeated jibes directed at gadfly-critic Sam Schwalm, who sat quietly in the front row throughout the two-hour meeting, interjecting only occasional questions.
Realtor hopes governor will commute 90-year child porn sentence
As a former local Realtor waits to hear if the governor will shorten his 90-year sentence for possessing child pornography, his health continues to decline, said his lawyer. Due to the length of the sentence, Robert Flibotte, 74, remains in virtual lockdown in a Florence prison’s special management unit said appeal attorney Edward Novak Monday. “It is a very stark and very intimidating place,” Novak said. “Physically, he continues to deteriorate.” Novak said the last time he spoke with Flibotte, the effective life sentence weighed heavily on the once-prominent Rim Country real estate agent.
A Deer Creek house Monday morning caught everyone off guard. It took some time for crews to arrive after the fire was reported just before 10 a.m., since the small, unincorporated community south of Rye isn’t covered by a fire district. Tonto Basin Fire Chief Steve Holt said he wasn’t going to send any crew at first, because he didn’t want to put his district at risk, but he didn’t want to see the rest of the neighborhood go up in flames. However, the next time there is a fire in the community, he likely won’t send any personnel due to financial constraints and the risk of leaving his district vulnerable. By the time Tonto Basin and Forest Service firefighters arrived, flames had fully engulfed the stucco home at 124 E. Cat Claw Road.