Stories for August 2012


Friday, August 31

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Globe retains power base

South County will remain in firm control of the Gila County Board of Supervisors, with the surprising third-place finish of Ronnie McDaniel for a four-year seat on the board. A former judge, law enforcement officer and Star Valley resident, McDaniel placed third in a race that hinged on low turnout in the north. The vote split geographically, but Globe’s turnout was more than double Payson's. No Republicans ran for the District 3 supervisorial seat, so the position will likely go to Globe businessman John Marcanti of Globe. Marcanti won 512 votes or 37 percent; Marvin Mull Jr. of San Carlos, had 481 ballots cast for him (35 percent); and McDaniel had 384 or 28 percent of the vote.

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Challenger upsets county attorney

No campaign got more politically charged in the primary than the county attorney’s race. For three terms, Republican incumbent Daisy Flores ran unopposed.

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Gila County elections: Upsets and umbrage

Gila County faced one of its most wide-open, high-stakes primary seasons in decades on Tuesday, but Northern Gila County voters mostly stayed home. With the board of supervisors, county attorney and sheriff’s offices up for grabs, turnout in the north ranged from 10 to 24 percent in most precincts. In the south, about a third of voters cast a ballot. The turnout differential proved decisive in a host of races that North County advocates had hoped would finally end South County’s long monopoly on political power.

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Shepherd stomps Stubbs

Retired undersheriff Adam Shepherd’s smashing victory in the race to replace retiring Sheriff John Armer revealed the depth of north-south differences among Gila County voters. Running as a Republican, Shepherd wracked up such big margins in north-county precincts that he handily defeated former deputy Darrell Stubbs, who won most of the precincts in the south and Tonto Basin. Both candidates campaigned aggressively in both the north and south, but Shepherd came out on top, capturing 3,671 votes, 60 percent of those from Payson/Star Valley residents. Stubbs got 2,107 votes, only 42 percent of those from Payson.

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Boater’s tip leads to capture of murder suspect

Bruised, thirsty and desperate, a 57-year-old murder suspect surrendered to officers quietly Wednesday afternoon, it was the weary conclusion to dramatic events that started with a mysterious murder, a lucky break, an 80-mile, high-speed chase, barely averted head-on collisions, a shoot-out with officers and a flight into the desert. After five days in the desert north of Roosevelt Lake, Gabriel “Gabby” Jaramillo gladly drank from officers’ water bottles when they finally caught up with him. Gila County Sheriff’s Office Lt. Tim Scott, who oversaw a command center at the lake, said he was somewhat surprised at Jaramillo’s sudden surrender, “but on the other hand, he had been out there almost five days with no fresh drinking water.” An alert boater who Jaramillo approached on the shores of the lake tipped officers to his presence.

SV Rainy Day Fund lowered, loan waived

The Star Valley Town Council has reconfigured its Rainy Day Fund and waived repayment of a loan used to help buy the water company serving the town. The council opted to use $600,000 of the $1.2 million in the Rainy Day Fund to purchase the $775,000 water company in December 2011. Since then, the council members have debated whether to repay the fund.

Community almanac

Rim residents are invited to meet the Democrats’ candidate for the U.S. Senate seat being vacated by Jon Kyl’s retirement. Richard Carmona will have a meet-and-greet at 5:30 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 2 at the Oxbow, located on Historic West Main Street.

We have failed liberty’s test

Well, at least we shouldn’t have to listen to people complaining about local government for the next four years. Obviously, Rim Country residents have no problem at all with the police, taxes, property assessments, distribution of county resources or government spending. Just one big happy family of perfectly contented folks. What else shall we conclude from the paltry turnout in the just-concluded primary election? In most North County precincts, turnout for critical races like Ronnie McDaniel’s apparently doomed effort to restore political balance to the board of supervisors drew just 10 percent of the eligible voters.

Romney should show tax records

All that glitters is not gold. Romney bragged nobody has asked for his birth certificate. Maybe not, but many have asked for his low-rate tax records to prove that he has paid his own way to become the opposing presidential nominee and financially supported the country that gave him a silver spoon at birth.

More murky thinking

Speaking of “murky thinking” (Roundup, Aug. 17), if “the kind of individual who carries out these atrocities has no fear of personal harm or even death,” as claimed by Noble Collins, why did the Aurora theater shooter prepare for his spree killing by spending over $2,000 for neck-to-ankle Kevlar armor, a Kevlar helmet, and a gas mask?

MCT a great experience

I would like to thank the Roundup for the publicity and splendid coverage it gave to the Missoula Children’s Theatre production of “Beauty Lou and the Country Beast.” I’d also like to thank all the parents and grandparents who encouraged their children to audition and backed them in doing the show. And what a fun show it was! It was great to see so many people come together in such a short time — not only the actors and crew, but the sponsors as well.

Ryan’s plan throws less fortunate to the wolves

Block the Vote and still claim to be among God’s elite? These same aliens, their spirits must be enemies from afar, or they would reach out to their friends across the aisle, to seek solutions, not to stir up more trouble. To plead with them let’s be fair is wasted breath? Please, let’s don’t give tax breaks for the rich at the expense of the low income workers. That is the problem, not the solution.

Partner with Payson Community Kids

I am writing to you on behalf of Payson Community Kids and would like to let you know about an upcoming opportunity to partner with PCK and support the in-need children in our community. PCK is a non-profit organization that has been serving Payson for 14 years and is currently helping more than 100 children and their families with food, school supplies, and after-school activities. Every Thursday we hold a Kids Group where we offer games, crafts, educational activities, and a free dinner for the kids. The dinner is possible through our Feed the Kids Campaign.

Stop raiding Social Security

It’s time the president and the U.S. Congress stop raiding the Social Security Trust Fund and pay what you owe Mr. President. How can you steal this money from our Social Security Trust Fund and ask for our vote? We are the middle class and seniors in this country. Please explain that to me and others who are interested exactly what government does for us.

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Quiet state legislative primary sets up general election smash up

The primaries for the one state senator and two state representatives who will represent Rim Country passed with hardly a ripple. But watch out for the general election, when three Democrats and three Republicans will face off in a district so completely redrawn that no one has the clear advantage of incumbency. Moreover, although Republicans have the edge in state legislative District 4, registration numbers give the three Democrats a fighting chance. The state senate contest will match two legislative incumbents, thrown into transformed districts by the redistricting process. In the Nov. 4 contest for the single state senate seat, state Rep. Tom Chabin (D-Flagstaff) will face off against Rep. Chester Crandell (R-Heber).

Rep. Gosar easily defeats challenger for congressional seat

Rep. Paul Gosar smashed State Sen. Ron Gould in a bid for the Republican nomination in Congressional District 4, which will represent Northern Gila County. Gosar represented all of Gila County before redistricting split the county in two. But Gosar moved to Prescott to run in a redrawn, overwhelmingly Republican district that includes Rim Country, Prescott, the Verde Valley and most of western Arizona – from Yuma to the Utah border.

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Recorder incumbent triumphs, assessor faces challenge

Gila County recorder incumbent Sadie Jo Tomerlin handily defeated Republican challenger Max Feezor in the entirely civil race that offered a rare chance for a North County resident to win a countywide office. Meanwhile, assessor candidate Deborah Hughes beat out her opponents in the Republican primary on Tuesday, setting up a general election face-off with longtime Democratic incumbent Dale Hom. Feezor’s closely watched challenge turned largely on an alarmingly low turnout in North County, where most precincts attracted only about 12 percent of the registered voters compared to more like 30 percent in Globe. North County has a majority of the population and pays 70 percent of the taxes, but nearly all the county officials come from Globe. Tomerlin, who had previously run as a Democrat, received 40 percent more of the votes than Feezor.

District 3 supervisor recount still an unknown

The question of a recount of the votes given John Marcanti and Marvin Mull Jr. in the District 3 supervisor race is still up in the air. There are still early and provisional ballots to be counted, said Linda Eastlick, director of the Gila County elections office. She said early ballots delivered after the Friday before the election and Election Day are not counted until after all other ballots are tallied. Some people deliver their early ballots to their polling place the day of the election, she said.

Incumbent county treasurer faces challenge

Gila County Treasurer Deborah Savage faced no opposition in the Democratic primary, but will face a challenge in the general election from Payson resident Don Ascoli, who ran unopposed in the Republican primary. Chairman of the Gila County Republican Party, Ascoli says the longtime incumbent doesn’t do enough to communicate with voters about the county’s investing strategy and tax rates.

Flake seizes Republican nomination for U.S. Senate

The battle for the U.S. Senate race pivoted to a high-stakes general election matchup this year in the face of Congressman Jeff Flake’s slaughter of challenger Wil Cardon in the Republican primary. The unopposed Democratic nominee, former U.S. Surgeon General Richard Carmona, wasted no time opening the general election campaign, with a meet-and-greet session slated during a swing through Payson on Sunday, Sept. 2. Flake racked up 69 percent of the Republican vote in Gila County, compared to 23 percent for Cardon, a Mesa businessman and investor who poured more than $7.5 million into his own campaign.

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Don’t count the Cowboys out

There are fans and boosters who remain certain the Payson Longhorn football team (1-0) will run roughshod over Camp Verde (0-1) this evening.

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Payson bowler knocks down coveted ABT title

Josh Reid takes a 232.65 average to finals; finishes 1st

Rim Country Lanes Director of Operations Josh Reid shined in two weekend bowling showdowns.

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A last hurrah for summer fun this weekend

The Christopher-Kohl’s Fire Department and the Firebelles wanted to remind everyone they are having an all-you-can-eat pancake breakfast Saturday from 7:30 a.m. to 10:30 a.m.

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Best of the season is still ahead of us

Today is the last day of August, where did the summer go?

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Gentlemen, start your lawn mowers

Demolition Derby adding locals-only lawn mower race

Nelson Beck has added a new wrinkle to the Northern Gila County Fair’s 8th Annual Demolition Derby.

Remembering Horn standout Cade Howell

Former Payson High School football and baseball standout Cade Howell has died at 33 years of age.

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PI draws record 24 teams

The 2012 Payson Volleyball Invitational will be the largest in history, with 24 teams, but whether it will be the best ever remains to be seen.

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Happy 100th birthday, Harry Sarre

What do Oreo Cookies and my good friend, Harry Sarre, have in common?

Do you really believe kids are so different today?

I know you’ve run the across the same news articles I have, the ones that sound so very, very sad, that just drip with sorrow.

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Get the dirt on in Pine and Strawberry

On a recent trip to the Valley, I decided to throw caution to the wind.

Clubs and Organizations

A great “Breakfast for a Buck” is available at 8 a.m., Saturday, Sept. 1 at Ponderosa Bible Church, 1800 N. Beeline Highway.

Avoiding impound fees

Recently I spoke about the importance of identification tags and microchips for your pets.

Wednesday, August 29

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Murder suspect arrested at Roosevelt Lake

Police have apprehended Gabriel Jaramillo at Roosevelt Lake, ending a four-day manhunt, authorities said.

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Mural Art

Payson may be an art friendly town, but it has never been big on murals.

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Globe retains power base

The Rim Country will have only one homegrown representative on the Gila County Board of Supervisors for another four years.

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Bountiful Harvest

Time for Rim Country gardeners to reap rewards

August comes to a close this week and Rim gardens are going great thanks to the moisture-heavy air of monsoon season.

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Rim Country Places

Chapter 2 — The Apache Trail

It is always fun to take visitors on tours of the Rim Country, pointing out the sights and telling the stories.

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Christmas Travel

Christmas and New Year’s are a long way off, but if this is a time when you choose to travel, you should start making arrangements now.

At the Movies

The Bourne Legacy

For action fans like me, this film is a great treat.

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Getaway Around Rim Country

The Payson Woofers Society – PAWS – will hold a Labor Day Bake Sale from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m., Friday, Aug. 31 in front of the Payson Safeway.

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New Orleans jazz concert

Come out to the Community Presbyterian Church, 800 W. Main St., at 2 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 9 for a concert of New Orleans-style jazz and a CD release party with Dr Jass & the Heartbeats.

Good 2 Go

Farm & Market Dinner benefit Sept. 22

The 2012 Farm & Market Dinner to benefit Pine Strawberry Pine Fuel Reduction Inc. is Saturday, Sept. 22 at Fossil Creek Creamery, 10379 W. Fossil Creek Rd., Strawberry.

Easing arthritis pain without medicines

I just learned that my niece has basal cell cancer on her scalp. The doctor told her not to worry. Her mother is concerned. I’d never heard of it. Is this something to worry about?

Tuesday, August 28

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Election results

There were quite a few upsets in Tuesday's primary.

Coaches from around the state air concerns at AzFBCA meeting

Arizona Football Coaches Association (AzFBCA) members had the opportunity to vent their frustrations with the Arizona Interscholastic Association (AIA) at the organization’s August executive board meeting held in Phoenix.

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Police struggle to cover gaps in ranks

Violent crime down despite department operating 20 percent below its authorized strength

Still one lieutenant and four officers short of full staffing, Payson police officers no longer have much time for routine patrols and traffic details, said Police Chief Don Engler.

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Voters face glitches to cast ballots in high stakes primary election

Scroll down to see photo gallery with 21 precinct maps

One of the most consequential Rim Country primaries in years has finally come gusting into town like a monsoon storm, with new rules, misprinted voter ID cards, voter confusion — and a host of high-stakes campaigns.

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Murder suspect evades capture

White Mountain man on foot with a gun in Tonto Basin as manhunt widens

After a high-speed chase and shoot-out Saturday, police are still looking for a White Mountain man around the northeast end of Roosevelt Lake. The man is wanted in connection with a murder in Eagar.

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Indian Rodeo Association stages major event in Payson

This weekend’s 2012 Kenny Davis Southwest Indian Rodeo Association Regional Finals brought a big group of contestants to the Payson Event Center arena for a first-ever event town officials hope will become a regular fixture of summer.

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Mogollon Health Alliance lands major distance learning grant

The Mogollon Health Alliance received more than $250,000 from the 2012 USDA Distance Learning and Telecommunication Grant to aid schools with online learning by giving local high schools cutting-edge technology.

Property values decline, property taxes increase

Despite small rise in rates overall, $3 million drop in assessed values could produce lower tax bills

The value of property in Gila County has decreased almost $3 million in the last year.

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Rodeo results

Sudden Death, Clay Gernimo; Year End, JR Chino

Stubbs a good person; would be wonderful sheriff

I have known Darrell Stubbs for more than 30 years and have seen him through multiple issues including the death of his son and a motor vehicle accident that hurt his wife.

Shepherd a highly qualified candidate for sheriff

It is with great interest that I have been following the race for sheriff of Gila County and the letters to the media by supporters of various candidates.

Stubbs deserves support

I am a 25-year veteran of law enforcement with service in the Chandler Police Department, Maricopa County Sheriff’s Office, Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office, Miami Police Department, Gila County Sheriff’s Office and the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office.

Weary Independent

I am weary of the volume of mailings, robo calls and television ads endorsing candidates in our primary election.

The cowboy hat question

Am I the only one who doesn’t get the science of cowboy hats?

Tilting windmills — and proud of it

First I would like to thank Pete Aleshire for writing an article about our Democratic primary for U.S. House and spending a line or two establishing who I am as a person and a candidate.

Opening night magic

The August breeze, full of portent, wafted across the Longhorns’ football field Friday night during the first game of the season.

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Artists donate originals for campus fund-raiser

The Rim Country arts community last weekend demonstrated support for building a university campus in Payson through “The Art Walk at The Rim.”

Is a career in real estate right for you?

If you are pondering a career in real estate, now may be the time to make the leap.

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Gila County jobless rate stuck at 9.6 percent

Gila County remains mired in a downturn that stubbornly refuses to turn around, with unemployment stuck at 9.6 percent — a full 2.3 percent above nearby Maricopa County.

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Bountiful harvest

Time for gardeners to reap tasty rewards

Thanks to the moisture-heavy air of monsoon season, gardeners are harvesting the rewards of their summer labors left and right.

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Biologists plan to poison bass in Fossil Creek

Game and Fish, Fish and Wildlife to hold public hearing Wednesday in Camp Verde

The Arizona Department of Game and Fish in September will use a fish-killing poison to kill non-native bass that have invaded about 2.6 miles of Fossil Creek — perhaps the premier native fish refuge in the state.

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First-graders learn theatre techniques

Recently the directors for the Missoula Children’s Theatre came to Payson Elementary to teach the first-grade students in Mrs. Ormand’s and Mrs. Beery’s classes about theatre makeup.

Community Almanac

The popular Shoot for the Heart programs will resume with a discussion on elk in Rim Country at 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 28, Building A, Mountain Bible Church, 302 E. Rancho Road. 

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Rim swimmer has eye on Olympics

A Payson swimmer is one step closer to his Olympic goal after medaling five times at the Junior Olympics in Houston.

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Lady Horns debut tonight against Lobos

The Lady Longhorn volleyball team begins pursuit of post-season honors today, Tuesday, against a Snowflake Lobo team that over the past decade has been one of Payson’s fiercest rivals.

Ernst accolades roll in; coach has ties to Rim Country

Mesa Mountain View boys basketball coach Gary Ernst is no stranger in the Rim Country, mostly because he maintains a part-time home in Payson,.

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Swartwood scores first head coaching win

Longhorns upset favored Chino Valley team 52-28 with high-octane attack

There were soothsayers who scoffed at first-year Payson High School football coach Jake Swartwood when he confidently declared in pre-season he was going to do away with the Longhorns’ power option grind-it-out offense .

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Poole says goodbye to PMGA

Roger Poole is saying goodbye to the Payson Men’s Golf Association after more than 25 years of membership.

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Rec Roundup

This fall league offers youth another opportunity to further their soccer skills playing in a fun and safe environment. Ages 4 to 6th-graders.

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Search group needs help with donated dog

The Gila County Sheriff’s Mounted Posse search and rescue unit was recently given a specially trained search dog worth about $12,000.

Monday, August 27

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Manhunt near Roosevelt continues

The search for a White Mountain man wanted in conjunction with a homicide continues after a massive manhunt near Roosevelt Lake Sunday turned up nothing.

Friday, August 24

Supervisor ponders north/south divisions in county

Let me begin by thanking you for going to the lengths you are to inform and engage voters this election season and doing your part to “get out the vote.”

Keep earning income even when rates are low

Labor Day is coming up. It is a day that honors hard-working men and women across the United States. As an investor, you’d like to think that all your investments are working hard, too — including the ones that are producing income.

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Massage therapist takes over practice

When the Arizona School of Massage Therapy in Tempe certified Ricci Saliba in massage therapy last year, she never expected she would own her own practice so soon.

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Backstreet Salon has new stylist

Kristy Dillon has joined the staff at Backstreet Salon, at 203 W. Bonita St.

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Photographer getting his BUZZZZ on

After snapping more than a 100 pictures Wednesday night, amateur photographer Jack Quinn finally captured this clear shot of a dozen brilliant hummingbirds feeding at a dish off his back porch.

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Man admits killing infant, abusing girl

Six years after shaking his baby to death, a Payson man pleaded guilty recently to manslaughter faced with new accusations he had abused another child.

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ASU’s President Crow revives campus hopes

The direct intervention of Arizona State University President Michael Crow in the long-stalled negotiations over building a 6,000-student university campus in Payson has revived faltering hopes for a deal.

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Flores defends probes into killings

Political ad challenges county attorney’s handling of three deaths

Two unsolved murder cases and a slew of allegations have heated things up in both the Gila County attorney and sheriff races.

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Tontozona crowds score

Turnout better than expected say officials after investing $150,000 in football camp

Arizona State University’s new athletic director, Steve Patterson, hasn’t been around long enough to reminisce over the former training days at Camp Tontozona. He doesn’t have any stories about legendary coach Frank Kush.

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Forest guidelines for goshawks may not help

Surprising study of rare raptor raises questions about forest thinning

No doubt about it: The federal government wants the Northern Goshawk to survive. So every national forest in the West wrote into its forest plan detailed rules to protect critical habitat the bird- and rodent-hunting raptors need to survive.

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School board ponders replacing counselor

Aug. 28 agenda includes possible new hire at middle school

After parents repeatedly asked the Payson School Board to reinstate a counselor position to Rim Country Middle School, the board will consider approving the idea at its Aug. 28 meeting.

Stubbs appreciates endorsements

I’ve spent this last year seeking out and developing relationships with numerous groups including the Border Sheriffs and the Legacy Foundation.

Feezor best man for the job of county recorder

Mac Feezor is a Payson resident running for Gila County recorder on the Republican ticket.

Several candidates have changed parties

In a running discussion in the Letters to the Editor section of the Roundup, there have been several letters relating to “Why is Adam Shepherd being trashed for changing from Democrat to Republican?”

Perfect or not

I am writing you in response to the front page article of the Roundup two weeks ago where all the sheriff candidates’ records and past performance while with the sheriff’s office were printed.

Health care benefits important

I was rather shocked at the letter from Dr. Phon Sutton.

Investigations show no one to prosecute in Salazar case

I am writing in response to William De La Torre and Susan K. Imperatrice’s open letters, both referencing the Tim Salazar case.

A constitutional tax

Gary Austin believes “Flat sales tax fair” (Roundup, Aug. 21).

Emergency care for veterans

This is a notice to all veterans in the Payson area regarding emergency care.

Unintended consequences

We’re drawn to playing God. We like the way it looks on us. We love that little rush of omnipotence. Alas. In truth, we’re not qualified for the job.

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School board draws up its wish list

Cost aside, board dreams of all-day kindergarten, no sports fees, bonuses and pay raises for teachers

Payson School Board members took a deep breath last week and revealed their heart’s desires — regardless of the price tag.

Community Almanac

The fall sports season at Payson High School begins tonight. The Longhorn football team plays at 7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 24 on its home field, hosting Chino Valley.

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Longhorns open season with new tradition

New addition to field a testament to family

A very special addition to Longhorn Stadium will be unveiled at Friday’s season-opening game against Chino Valley.

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Big bowling weekend in Rim Country

Rim Country Lanes will be hosting some of the area’s and state’s best bowlers in two tournaments this weekend. First, is an Amateur Bowling Tournament, which is the largest Amateur Bowlers Tour series in the West.

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Good things expected from girls soccer squad

One thing is obvious about the 2012 Payson High School girls soccer team — they respect their coach, Amy Wilcox.

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Young Rim Country riders honored in dressage event

Two Rim Country Junior/ Young Riders recently competed in the Arizona Dressage Association Show, Dressage in the Pines in Flagstaff.

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High school’s cross country team 2012 prospects good

With the team’s top five girls — Erin Hussman, Abby Greenleaf, McKalya McCrary, McKinzie Mann and Storm Alexander — Ball believes the Longhorns could win the state championship.

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Thanks to all for help with tree removal

Hello again, fellow Creekers. Timberrrrr! Over the weekend at the Grey Hackle Lodge we had a big tree come crashing down in the early morning.

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Tonto Village gets welcome downpour

What a downpour Tonto Village had on Monday afternoon. In the span of about half an hour, the rain was measured at about an inch.

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Don’t miss a chance at great prizes

Summer is coming to an end, and so is your chance to win some great prizes.

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Politics got you down? Turn to music

“Do unto others as you would have them to unto you.” — God “If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all.” — Your mom (and mine)

You’ll never know if you can do it until you try

More than once, life has taught me a valuable lesson:

Is a puppy, adult or senior dog best?

When adopting a dog, one choice you’ll need to make is whether to adopt a puppy, an adolescent, or an adult.

Clubs and Organizations

The Northern Gila County Genealogical Library has reopened following a summer break. Hours of operation are Fridays from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Thursday, August 23

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Hard times, new technology spur startling challenge for recorder race

The Gila County recorder’s office — generally a boring office no one thinks about, especially around election time. But not this year.

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Republican Senate primary provokes bitter confrontation

Flake, Cardon dominate race with struggle to win title of ‘most conservative’ candidate

Only in an Arizona Republican primary could you base a campaign on the assertion that Rep. Jeff Flake isn’t conservative enough.

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Complaints about impact fees spur rare sanitary district races

For the first time in years, incumbent members of the Northern Gila County Sanitary District face spirited opposition.

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Race is on for Rim Country school boards

Nine candidates jostling for three seats on the board

Nine Rim Country School board candidates have collected all necessary signatures, had their nomination papers notarized and turned everything into the Gila County Superintendent’s office.

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Ascoli challenges Savage in treasurer’s race

Don Ascoli decided to run for Gila County Treasurer after sitting in a Board of Supervisor’s meeting in 2011 as the supervisors voted on the tax rates for the year.

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Former surgeon general and war hero launches long-shot bid for U.S. Senate

Richard Carmona hopes bitter Republican primary will give him an opening with voters in the general election

Like a race horse hugging the rail and hanging back, former U.S. Surgeon General Richard Carmona hopes to win Arizona’s U.S. Senate seat in spite of the long odds.

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For first time in a quarter century – there’s a race for the assessor’s office

Two Republicans vie in August primary to challenge longtime Democratic incumbent in the November general election

For nearly a quarter of a century, voters have quietly re-elected incumbent Dale Hom to the Gila County assessor’s office.

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Republican congressional race brings conservative principles under scrutiny

Incumbent faces primary battle in redrawn district

Did Rep. Paul Gosar betray his conservative principles when he followed the urgings of House Republican leaders and voted to raise the debt ceiling?

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Two Democrats tilting windmills

Don Quixote had it better. Sure, he tilted windmills with a tin pot on his head in a hopeless quest for glory. But at least he had a horse and a trusted sidekick.

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Incumbent supervisors get free ride in primary but face general election opposition

Three of the eight candidates seeking election to the Gila County Board of Supervisors will be on the sidelines until after the primary. Their races will be decided in November.

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Many ballot measures before voters in November

Unofficially, voters will have nine measures to decide in November’s general election in addition to selecting the men and women they wish to represent them at the national, state and local levels and fill a variety of public service offices.

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Veteran prosecutor faces fierce challenge

The Republican primary contest for the Gila County Attorney’s post pits a veteran prosecutor against a challenger who maintains that the incumbent has been “soft on crime.”

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Contested races for Gila County supervisor could shift balance of power to the north

Several vigorous primary battles to determine lineup for November general election

All three seats on the Gila County Board of Supervisors are open targets this election season.

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State Senate poses sharp contrast

The primaries for the state senate seat representing Rim Country qualified as boring – with one candidate from each party in the running.

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Democrat sheriff candidates want to boost morale, overhaul budget

Van Buskirk, Jones disagree sharply with Republican rivals, only rarely with each other

Democratic candidates for the job of Gila County Sheriff Ray Van Buskirk and Craig Jones have taken nearly opposite policy viewpoints over their Republican challengers Darrell Stubbs and Adam Shepherd – but disagree with one another about very little.

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Republican sheriff candidates square off

Four years ago, Darrell Stubbs, then a Democrat, retired from the Gila County Sheriff’s Office and set his sights on taking his boss’ job.

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State House: Uncontested primaries, sharp differences

Republicans and Democrats each recruited an uncontested slate of candidates for the dramatically redrawn state House District 6, which includes all of Rim Country.

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Vital choices confront Rim Country voters

Home values fall, as property taxes rise. You call the sheriff and no one shows up for an hour. The Arizona Legislature balances its budget — but cuts $2 billion from schools. Residents of northern Gila County pay 70 percent of the taxes, but must drive to Globe to get basic services.

Wednesday, August 22

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Former Horn star provides protective gear for players

As a former all-region and all-state Longhorn football player, Dr. Eric Anderson knows the value of properly fitting protective gear to prevent or reduce the severity of injuries. That’s one of the reasons the Anderson Dental Group annually foots the bill to provide custom-made mouthguards to all Payson High School football players.

Tuesday, August 21

Mendoza named Building Official of the Year

Joe Mendoza has been named the Building Official of the Year for 2011-2012 by the State of Arizona Building Officials Organization (AZBO). 

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Rodeo draws crowds

They strap themselves to the backs of 2,000-pound beasts, their only safety net a braided rope securing one hand, a few inches of padding and a guy running around in a clown suit telling bad jokes.

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Tontozona scores a touchdown

More than 5,000 Sun Devil fans pulled out their camp chairs and got a front-row seat Saturday for the return of Arizona State University to Camp Tontozona after five long years.

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Massive thinning still on track?

The contractor who won the biggest forest thinning contract in history says he’s lining up investors, drawing up plans and will start cutting the first 5,000 acres of a 300,000-acre contract early next year.

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Politicians, clowns and ladies of the night

Crowds drawn to the Rodeo Parade savor history, patriotism and joys of rodeo day in a small town

Horseback riders, clowns, politicians and saloon girls entertained a large crowd at the Payson Rodeo Parade, transporting onlookers into the past — fitting for an event that celebrated Arizona’s Centennial.

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Seniors confront SS, Medicare challenges

Envisioned as supplemental income for impoverished retirees, Social Security and Medicare have now become the lifeline for most seniors.

Community Almanac

Rim Country Middle School will have a Meet the Teacher Night and Dinner Tuesday, Aug. 21.

Middle school in trouble

Are we ready yet to acknowledge we need a middle school counselor?

Mac is a rare find

Rarely is a candidate more qualified than Mac Feezor is for county recorder.

Tomerlin has experience where it counts

I have known Sadie Jo Tomerlin for several years.

How much checking did Darrell Stubbs do?

Gila County sheriff candidate Darrell Stubbs ran a half-page campaign advertisement in the Payson Roundup and several other Gila County newspapers during the past week identifying the Southwest Border Sheriffs Association and Border Narcotics Intelligence as supporting and endorsing him for sheriff.

Beware Gila County voters

Many years ago, I attended a class in American Government by Law.

Flat sales tax fair

The nonstop debate about who gets taxed what is a colossal waste of time.

It’s all about who shows up

Elections are decided mostly by how many people don’t bother to exercise that most precious right, obtained at such great price, over so many years.

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All quiet on the Western front

Despite a sold out crowd at Saturday’s rodeo, things on the streets remained calm. The Payson Police Department reported making no DUI arrests and only two rodeo-related disturbances.

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Sanitary district upgrades equipment

The Northern Gila County Sanitary District will have its $1.15 million headworks facility completed within the next few weeks. The district administration and staff are waiting for training on the new equipment and a “shakedown” run.

Working out possession agreements

On occasion, we have had buyers who want to occupy a home they are purchasing prior to the close of escrow or sellers who want to remain in the home past the close of escrow.

Budget impasse could cost jobs

Report: Arizona could lose 49,000 jobs if federal budget cuts take effect

Arizona could lose more than 49,000 jobs if automatic federal budget cuts are allowed to take effect in January, according to a recently released report.

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Russ Morris big winner in Payson Mens Golf Association fray

Russ Morris dominated Payson Men’s Golf Association tournament play on Aug. 8, finishing first in the low net competition and pocketing closest to the pin prize money on two holes.

Another rodeo rides into town

The Mazatzal Hotel and Casino has partnered with the Southwest Indian Rodeo Association to host the 2012 Kenny Davis Regional Finals Rodeo at the Payson Event Center Saturday, Aug. 25. Performances will be at 1 p.m. and 7 p.m.

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Longhorn football starts this Friday

The Longhorn football team has a preseason scrimmage with Snowflake under its belt and is now gearing up for the regular season opener Friday, Aug. 24. The varsity will host Chino Valley; game time is at 7 p.m. at Longhorn Field.

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Amon wins rodeo money

Jason Amon, a saddle bronc rider, was one of a handful of Rim Country entries in this weekend’s rodeo and the only one in that group to come out with some money.

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Get acquainted with your automobile’s GPS

Do you have a GPS (Global Positioning System) in your vehicle? Recently we went with our daughter and son-in-law to visit family in Southern California, accompanied by Beatrice, their GPS, who never missed a turn in the nearly 800-mile round trip.

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Rescuers spend night in fruitless search, then head for parade

Tonto Rim Search and Rescue got some unexpected training this weekend when it was called out to search for a missing Star Valley man. But after four hours of fruitless searching early Saturday morning, the man turned up at a local motel unscathed.

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Cattle can teach kids life, business lessons

Students discover prize steers are sometimes like a ‘1,200-pound 2-year-old’

Colton Jackson’s Angus steer, Mater, likes to kick him. “They’re a lot of fun, but you start hating them when they kick you,” he said.

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Nest watcher program saves eaglets from ticks

Biologists seeking answer to mysterious failure of productive bald eagle nest demonstrates the narrow path back from extinction

After three consecutive years of failing to fledge its young bald eagles, an important Arizona nest site is back to adding to the growth of the state’s bald eagle population with two nestlings surviving to fledge on their own.

Clubs and Organizations

The Time Out, Inc. Board meets at 5:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month (Aug. 21) at the office of Kevin Dick Investments at 715 S. Beeline Highway, Ste. A. Volunteers are always needed. For more information, please call (928) 472-8007.

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‘It’s amazing what kids can do in a week!’

Missoula Children’s Theatre presents play in Payson

For two hours, Rim Country theatre goers laughed, sang and shouted along with the 63 children who performed “Beauty Lou and the Country Beast.”

Monday, August 20

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Snippet here, glue it there.

The Paper and Metal Scrappers Store, located in the Sawmill Crossing Shopping center, holds a group of different but dedicated scrappers hostage once a month on Saturday morning.

Sunday, August 19

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Buckhead Landfill burning brush piles

The Gila County Public Works Departmentwill be burning brush piles on Monday, August 20th at 7:00 a.m. the Buckhead Landfill.

Saturday, August 18

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Rodeo stages 128th bash

Thursday’s Women’s Rodeo kicks off week of dances, bull riding, calf roping, plus a parade

More than $50,000 in cash and prizes, between 160 and 200 athletes, more than 200 head of livestock, plus a few tons of feed for the animals — add it up and it’s no wonder Payson’s World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo is one of the community’s biggest events.

Friday, August 17

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Firefighters battling two wildfires

Blaze near Roosevelt sends smoke drifting through Rim Country

Two major fires continued to burn in Rim Country on Thursday, sending smoke drifting throughout the region and inflicting a renewed fire season on weary firefighters.

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Troubled students challenge teachers

Assault on teacher illustrates risks of coping with kids with emotional disabilities

Special education teachers and aides work long hours, at low rates and in some of the most volatile educational environments. Not surprisingly, turnover is high.

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Middle school students struggle to keep pace

RCMS suffers another ‘D’ in state rankings as scores remain below state, national averages

No Child Left Behind, the Florida reforms, Common Core Standards, Arizona school grading system — a never-ending parade of reforms and measurement systems designed to show the public children are getting an adequate education.

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ASU fans throng Tontozona

Wide-eyed, Bobby, 9 years old and wearing a tattered Arizona State University football jersey, positioned himself on the Camp Tontozona sidelines where he had an up close and personal look at the Sun Devils as they conducted preseason training for the first time in years.

Rollover closes Highway 87 Wednesday

Officers closed southbound Highway 87 for an hour Wednesday night after a vehicle rolled just south of town.

Community Almanac

Payson Education Center, an alternative accredited high school, is still enrolling for the 2012-13 school year. New students are also being accepted.

Stubbs right for job

I have known Darrell Stubbs for more than 20 years, worked with him and beside him.

The future cost of water in Payson

Recent news reports indicate that the Blue Ridge project to expand Payson’s water supply will cost $34 million.

Barton and Crandell voted for unfunded mandate

This responds to your story about the unfunded mandate forced on Payson by the Arizona Legislature that requires the city to increase benefits for police officers.

Y is for yoga

I may have Special K for breakfast.

Murky thinking

I am not acquainted with anyone with the name Holli.

Shepherd for sheriff

The tremendous amount of political activity in play for the Aug. 28 primary election is exciting and is a portent of the importance of this upcoming election.

Public gun carrier least likely to attack, most likely to help

It is true that the AK 47 assault rifle is not the best for hunting, it is also true that the Second Amendment of the U.S. Constitution does not guarantee the right to hunt.

What is Obama hiding?

For a president who states he wants “transparency” he doesn’t even know what the word means.

Women might find solutions to nation’s myriad of problems

Females comprise approximately 50 percent of our population in Arizona.

Seniors be alert

Seniors we need to be alert. Bad things are about to happen:

Sheriff John Armer endorses Adam Shepherd for sheriff

I have spent the last 12 years of my professional life devoted to improving the Gila County Sheriff’s Office into the agency it is today with staff dedicated to serve and protect our communities.

Don’t panic, but don’t ignore data

It happens one day, seemingly out of the blue. You’re driving along in a car you thought was running just fine and might just go on indefinately when suddenly black smoke pours out of the tailpipe.

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It’s an uncomfortable ride

Long-haul cyclists tackle challenges with random acts of kindness

A group of bike riders made life a little brighter for local non-profits last week.

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Students take on beast

63 Rim Country kids stage weekend shows in one week

The Missoula Children’s Theatre blew into town last weekend to cast, rehearse, build and produce a play in one week.

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Republicans debate; Democrat punts

Only the Republican candidates for Gila County recorder attended a Payson Tea Party debate last week to wrangle over how the vital but often inconspicuous office can improve customer service — and use the Internet to quickly post vital records online.

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Girls on the Run sign up nearing

Organizers say there are only a few more days for parents to sign up their daughters for the “Girls on the Run” program this fall.

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Against the Light

Wait, wait, until the light finds you

Photo journalists must look always for that elusive image, light and luck caught in the frozen click of a shutter before it vanishes like a shadow on a cloudy day.

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High school hopes contractor will finish gym project soon

The high school gym project might be complete soon — or not. The old gym had years of renovations and built-on rooms that constantly threw the builders for a loop, delaying completion of the roof project.

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Campaign spending triggers probe

Group that endorsed Stubbs investigated for activities in Pinal County

A group that has endorsed a local candidate for sheriff is now being investigated by the Gila County Attorney’s Office for potential campaign finance violations in Pinal County.

Shoot for the Heart programs return Aug. 28

The highly popular Shoot for the Heart seminars begin their third year at 6 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 28 at Mountain Bible Church, 302 E. Rancho Road, with a presentation on “Elk of the Rim Country and Rim Country Fruit Cobbler.”

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Kush, fans welcome ASU back to Tontozona

Most striking about the Arizona State University football team’s first practice at Camp Tontozona since 2007 was the presence of legendary coach Frank Kush and the speed, quickness and hustle the players showed in drills and brief scrimmages.

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Horns flying under the radar

If the element of surprise is a distinct advantage in high school football, the Payson Longhorns, under first-year coach Jake Swartwood, should be able to ambush opponents this season.

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Schedule ‘insane’ says coach

The Payson High School volleyball schedule might be one of the most demanding in school history with the team playing as many as three consecutive games on two occasions and being on the road for six straight matches in mid-September.

Adoption special continues

The pets featured below are just some of the many wonderful animals currently available for adoption from the Humane Society of Central Arizona. Through the month of August, all cats and kittens are just $25; all dogs and puppies are only $45.

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ASU’s Camp Tontozona return is great news

Camp Tontozona will be active again. What great news! The ASU football team, the Sun Devils, will be holding practice sessions and a scrimmage this week.

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Lots of fun this Rodeo Week

As always, on the third weekend of August (which is this weekend), Payson will again hold its August Doin’s — highlighted by the 128th World’s Oldest Continuous Rodeo.

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Ahhh ... summer on the Rim

Wasn’t it beautiful at the Mountain Daze Festival last weekend? I find beauty in the coldest or rainiest day, but there’s something about browsing artwork or hiking the Arizona Trail or fishing the Verde River in sandals on a warm summer day that is unbeatable.

A time when I was half man, half boy and mostly confused

I’ll tell you what, Johnny. Never take a young man of 14 who loves reading, but whose knowledge of the world is limited to the way it transpires within the pages of a book, and put him in an isolated, live-in workplace filled with college girls.

Clubs and Organizations

Rim Country Chapter of the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR) will meet 8 a.m., Saturday, Aug. 18 at Tiny’s Restaurant. A film of Revolutionary War history will be shown.

Wednesday, August 15

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Fire closes Sportsman's Chalet kitchen

Fire fighters from the Pine Fire Department emerge from the Sportsman's Chalet in Strawberry after putting out a kitchen grease fire.

Mistake Peak Fire Continues to Grow

Above average temperatures and shifting winds from passing thunderstorms contributed to the Mistake Peak Fire growing to approximately 4,000 acres today.

Tuesday, August 14

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Terror’s toll

Cop’s persistence prompts woman who was beaten, chained, strangled to file charges

From the first time Payson Police Detective Mike McAnerny heard the woman’s halting and inconsistent explanation for her black eyes, battered face and broken hand, he suspected she had suffered one of the most common violent crimes in Rim Country — a nearly lethal attack inflicted by someone she loved.

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Monsoon falters; wildfires return

Too much lightning, not enough rain

Lightning strikes have sparked fires throughout the Tonto National Forest in the face of the retreat of the August monsoon and a sweltering heatwave.

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Problems with bears abate

Traps come up empty, campgrounds reopened

The U.S. Forest Service has reopened most of the areas closed this spring after a rare string of bear attacks. Months of effort to trap or track more bears in the area yielded a puzzling dearth of bruins.

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Teacher punched

Police arrested a middle school student Monday morning for reportedly punching a teacher.

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Show your town spirit

The Arizona State University Sun Devil football team travels today, Tuesday, through Payson on its journey to Camp Tontozona near Kohl’s Ranch.

Community Almanac

Payson Education Center, an alternative accredited high school, is still enrolling for the 2012-13 school year. New students are also being accepted.

Know your candidates

I was so happy to read the letter to the editor by Cliff Potts in Tuesday’s Roundup.

Shepherd is right man for job as sheriff

I have sure heard a lot of promises from Darrell Stubbs in his second attempt to run for sheriff.

What kind of taxes, Mr. Romney?

“I’ve paid lots of taxes, plenty of taxes,” or something very similar has been a news clip from Mr. Romney.

Premises all wrong

Whenever someone writes about a controversial issue they always run the risk of being misunderstood.

Wish Payson eateries wouldn’t use cheap Chinese utensils

My wife and I had breakfast this morning at one of the older established restaurants in Payson.

Why is the world laughing at us?

I have noticed in the past Roundups we are having some great (?) discussions on policies.

Yummy! GMO sweet corn coming to Walmart

Genetically engineered sweet corn from Monsanto is headed for Walmart store shelves.

Missing the point

Jim Muhr is at it again. He doesn’t get the point of my letter printed in the Payson Roundup on July 31. I’ll repeat it here, but first I’d like to address some of the latest accusations from him printed on Aug. 10.

Bureaucrats making laws, not statesmen

In a few weeks we as a community and nation have the opportunity to vote for the man or woman we think is most qualified to fill political offices at city, county, state and national levels.

Taste at the Bridge 2012 a success

The Friends of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park want to thank everyone involved in making the Taste at the Bridge 2012 event successful! With more than 180 people at the event on Aug. 4, it shows the support of the community.

Betty Lou and who?

That’s Betty Lou and the Country Beast, PHS auditorium, Friday and Saturday, Aug. 17 and 18, 6:30 p.m. We’ll have professional children’s theatre right here in Payson, with the Missoula Children’s Theatre — and your help.

Candidates AWOL

The Citizens Awareness Committee (CAC) recently attempted to hold three primary debates among the candidates vying for the county supervisor and congressional positions.

The mind of a bronc

This week, we all have a chance to return to a simpler time when the greatest challenge was man versus beast.

A harvest of hope

Easy enough to despair. Easy enough to shrug. Easy enough to give up the fight. What can one person do — with the tide rushing out and the storm drawing nigh?

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Cook continues five-year battle for Supervisor’s seat

David Cook is one of two Republican challengers hoping to unseat incumbent District 2 Supervisor Mike Pastor, a Democrat. “I am running for Gila County Supervisor in District 2 because I love our county and the people in it.

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Super PAC’s spending roils race

Bitter battle for congressional seat dominated by debate about role of outside group

The fiercely contested Republican primary in the district that includes Rim Country has lurched into allegations that an out-of-state, ultra-conservative Super PAC is trying to “buy” the seat with a distorted advertising blitz.

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Drought may be ‘new normal’

Studies predict warming trend will make recent drought look like a wet period by century’s end

A month of monsoon has done wonders for Rim Country forests despite small fires sparked by lightning strikes, but those blessed months of near-normal rain may become a fond memory, according to a just-published study.

Wildland firefighters hope for health benefits

Seasonal Hotshot firefighters will be able to buy into the Federal Employees Health Benefits program, the same program that offers health insurance to federal full-time employees, the White House announced Tuesday.

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Campus benefit is hot ticket

Despite the heat, Nancy Guyon cheerfully pitched in to help the Central Arizona Board of Realtors at its Change for Change benefit Saturday night at the Oxbow to raise funds for the Rim Country Education Foundation.

Arizona’s expanded health coverage saved lives

Abandoned expansion cut death rates by 6.1 percent study concludes

Arizona’s 2001 expansion of Medicaid coverage resulted in lower death rates in the state, according to a study of several states that links increased coverage to fewer deaths and overall better health.

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Community garden sends bushels food banks

The sunflowers reached for the sky. The budding green pumpkins hung heavily from their stalks. The pea pods hid while the tomatoes flaunted their red skins.

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Veterans clinic elusive

Full-service veterans clinic here stalled, but talks continue

Advocates for Rim Country veterans continue to push for a Veteran’s Administration Clinic in Payson, hoping to save local veterans the aggravation of a drive to Prescott for many basic services.

Roth IRA benefits can stretch beyond your retirement

If you’re somewhat familiar with investing, you may know that the Roth IRA is a great retirement-savings vehicle. But are you aware that some of its benefits can also pay off for the next generation of your family?

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Friends bring faeries, bears and baby quilt shop to Pine

Faeries, Bears, and Baby Quilts (FBBQ) opened its doors for business last month under co-owners Sharon Chanley and BJ Mish, who also runs Pine Quilts.

Put out a big welcome for Sun Devils as they return to Rim Country

Rim Country Regional Chamber of Commerce Manager John Stanton’s hope is for throngs of locals to turn out at about 3 p.m. today, Tuesday, to give a huge Rim Country welcome to the Arizona State University football team.

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Horn scrimmage Thursday against Snowflake Lobos

The Payson Longhorn football team’s season-opening scrimmage against Snowflake previously slated for 7 p.m., Friday, Aug. 17 and been rescheduled for 6 p.m., Thursday, Aug. 16.

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Two-day limit not enough for Payson pro

Clifford Pirch’s bid to win the prestigious Forrest Wood Cup championships came up short, but he did manage a 25th place finish competing against the top 46 professional anglers in the world including four former Cup champions and three FLW Tour Angler of the Year title holders.

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Strople’s tutelage for Payson swimmers draws plaudits

Emily Giarrizzo, 12, and her mother, Chris, are singing Sharon Strople’s praises for encouraging Payson youth to compete in a year-round competitive swimming program despite the lack of facilities in the Rim Country.

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Roping pair reap big payday

The sport of rodeo often pays big time financial rewards. For evidence, look to Ted Meredith Memorial Roping high money winners Pedro Erurrola and Steven Guaona.

PWGA play heats up in July

As temperatures picked up in July, so did league play for the Payson Women’s Golf Association. It was a busy month, with the Flag Tournament, the Eclectic, and the start of the Medallion Tournament.

Friday, August 10

Federal money will fund bridges over East Verde

The federal government will provide more than $5 million to build three bridges and a low water crossing in northern Gila County beginning in the fall of 2013.

Why should you microchip your pet?

If you’ve ever lost a pet, you know about the importance of ID tags. Having identification and contact information securely attached to your pet’s collar makes it much more likely that you’ll get your family member back if something should happen and your animal gets away.

Star Valley council conservative with funds

The Star Valley Town Council will continue to stash its cash. “Probably the most important issue a council can decide is what to spend its money on and how much money it should have,” Town Manager Tim Grier told the council.

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Payson Care employees tanked for good cause

The dunk tank was part of Payson Care Center’s fund-raising events to raise money for the upcoming Walk to End Alzheimer’s on Sept. 22 at Green Valley Park. When Christy VanderMolen, Payson Care Center Health Care Services Liaison, took department heads to task to raise funds, they eagerly jumped at the opportunity.

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Bash for university Saturday

The Central Arizona Board of Realtors (CABOR) invites the public to a Rim Country Change for Change benefit bash at the Oxbow Saloon at 607 W. Main St. in Payson to help bring a new university campus to Payson.

Nominations sought for Farming & Ranching Hall

The deadline for submitting nominations for induction into the 2013 Arizona Farming & Ranching Hall of Fame is Sept. 1. Forms are available by contacting Carole DeCosmo at or (623) 695-9614.

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Condor pair produce fledgling

The sighting of a recently hatched condor chick in a nest cave deep in the Grand Canyon has boosted to 77 the flock of endangered giant scavengers in northern Arizona.

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County officials say budget doesn’t favor south

Supervisor, manager rebut complaints of north-south inequities

Gila County gets about 69 percent of its revenue from its northern communities, but does north county get its money’s worth?

Glass recycling bin needed

I have been a resident of Payson since 1995. When I first came to town from San Diego, I was quite dismayed at the lack of recycling opportunities in our town.

Debate challenge answered

Holli and Noble Collins proclaim “Rational debate on gun control elusive” (Aug. 7 Roundup).

I have a right to express my personal opinion

I am responding to Evelyn Wilkerson’s letter to the editor in the Tuesday, July 31 Payson Roundup in which she states that the “Tea Party president should keep personal opinions to self.”

Wondering why Republicans are so devoted

I have been sincerely asking acquaintances who happen to be a party to the Republicans, what makes them so devoted to their cause?

Sharpen the tools of liberty

Lots of folks think that the Founding Fathers and the Revolutionary War heroes in Valley Forge secured our liberties, centuries ago. Not true. Not true at all.

Community Almanac

The 128th August Doin’s Parade will take place Saturday, Aug. 18, beginning at 9 a.m. on Historic Main Street.

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Payson hires contractor to watch contractors

Council approves $243,000 contract to make sure someone oversees $1.1 million contracts already awarded

Faced with the demands of a major engineering project, the Payson council awarded the local engineering firm Tetra Tech a $10,000-a-week contract to keep tabs on the contractors building the Blue Ridge pipeline.

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Flake fights back

Republican senate front-runner hits Payson hot on the trail of challenger

Republican U.S. Senate front-runner Jeff Flake fielded friendly questions at a party meet-and-greet in Payson, although the sharp criticisms of his chief competitor were still ringing in the ears of Rim Country listeners.

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Records roil sheriff’s race

Stubbs, Van Buskirk accumulate reprimands

Personnel records reveal a sometimes-rocky past for Republican Gila County sheriff candidate Darrell Stubbs.

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Flores won’t prosecute medical marijuana cases

Identity of northern Gila County dispensary lottery winner still secret

No one knows for sure where a dispensary will open in Payson, but one thing is clear — if you have a medical marijuana identification card in Gila County, you won’t be prosecuted.

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High school gets an ‘A’ despite falling test scores

All a parent wants to know about their child’s school is this: Does the school do a good job? Will my child learn what they need to succeed in life?

He said, they said

Reports say man claiming police brutality had high blood alcohol count and violently resisted arrest

Police reports obtained by the Roundup contradict a man’s claim that officers used excessive force when they arrested him late last year.

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Perched on the brink of fame

Clifford Pirch only Arizona angler to qualify for ‘World Series of Bass Fishing’

Payson professional fisherman Clifford Pirch, once a Payson Roundup columnist, was one of 46 of the nation’s top anglers who began yesterday, Thursday, competing for the sport’s biggest prize and the most coveted piece of metal in bass fishing.

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Sharing with a best friend is special

celebrating her birthday today.

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Know your neighbor: The Lewis siblings

Hello again, fellow Creekers. It’s time for another installment of get to know your neighbor. This week I had the pleasure of interviewing Ashley Lewis and Brecken Lewis.

Coaches tickle funny bones

It’s no secret in the Rim Country that former Paradise Valley High School basketball coach Bill Farrell, now of Payson, is known for his sense of humor.

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Payson trio fuels Dawgs’ bite

United by a common passion for baseball, a group of teenagers representing Winslow, Holbrook, Cottonwood and Payson played their way this season to a USSA No. 1 ranking in the 14-years-and-under age division.

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Mountain Daze are here again

This weekend, Saturday, Aug. 11 and Sunday, Aug. 12, come enjoy crafts, an antique car and tractor show, food booths and kids’ activities at the third annual Mountain Daze festival in Pine.

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Cougars, Pinecones take first-place honors in 3-on-3 basketball tourney

The Cougars and Payson Pinecones played their way to first-place finishes in the Town of Payson-hosted 3-on-3 basketball tournament played Aug. 11 in Julia Randall Elementary School gymnasium.

Ex-Don coach on fire at PGC

Former Scottsdale Coronado basketball coach Herb Sherman is now basking in one of his finest athletic outings since his 1971-72 Dons team finished 29-9 and fourth in the state.

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Olympics enthralling in every sport

In the late summer of every leap year, I find myself in sports heaven. For two straight weeks in late July and early August, I wake up, turn on NBC and sit like a zombie in front of the boob-tube until the station’s double-digit hours of Olympic coverage is done for the day.

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Republicans squabble about who’s furthest to the right

If you wanna enjoy politics, you gotta have the right attitude. Think of it as an episode of “American Gladiator” — or maybe “Survivor,” where we get to vote them off the island.

Wednesday, August 8

How to prevent heat injuries

What can you tell me about hypothyroidism?

Events for animals on the horizon

This year’s Champagne in the Garden will benefit the Animal Welfare Fund, a non-profit organization that provides humane shelter to animals in need after disasters, and strives to eliminate cruelty to all animals.

Good 2 Go

Firing Pin Enterprizes, Inc. presents the 10th Annual Payson Gun and Knife Show Saturday, Aug. 11 and Sunday, Aug. 12 at the Tonto Apache Gymnasium.

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August Happenings

Events around area give residents, visitors a chance to show, share passion for Rim Country

Rim residents and visitors have a chance to show their support and share their passions for programs and events throughout the area in the coming weeks.

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Rim Country Chamber of Commerce history

Let’s take a look back at when a chamber of commerce was formed in Rim Country, as well as the circumstances that led to its need.

Fire up the flavor

Love cooking on the grill, but want to do more than basic burgers and the same-old barbecue chicken? Try cooking up some delicious grilled dishes with great tasting, all-natural Mrs. Dash® — you might be surprised how easy it is to add big flavor, without adding salt to your grilling favorites.

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Repositioning cruises

Twice each year, major cruise lines reposition some of their ships. You have lines that position ships from Caribbean service to Alaska for the summer period and then reposition them back to the Caribbean for winter service.

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At the Movies

The Watch - Interesting premise, but film falls short

This two saw blade movie gives the audience no reason to plunk down the admission money. You may safely skip the details if you like and go on with your life.

Getaway Around Rim Country

The theater directors and the students of both the high school and junior high drama programs are working to bring Missoula Children’s Theater to Payson in this month.

Tuesday, August 7

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Grudge match spawns splash of good-humored controversy

It was a boat race of Olympic proportions. On one side, the Payson Police Department lashed water coolers to half a dozen two-by-fours to create a catamaran of sorts.

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Police benefits costs rise

Council irritated by new law that forces increase in workman’s compensation costs

An irritated Payson Town Council reluctantly approved an emergency ordinance to comply with a new state law that will increase payments for any workmen’s compensation claims filed by police officers.

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Bare-knuckle senate primary hits town

Wil Cardon attacks Jeff Flake in two marathon sessions

Republican Senate candidate Wil Cardon’s campaign pit stop Thursday turned into a marathon question-and-answer session, first at a Republican meet-and-greet then at a Payson Tea Party session. The unflappable Mesa businessman demonstrated a genial appetite for questions and bragged on both his business background and his lack of political experience, asserting that only 15 U.S. Senators have been in business.

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A bridge not so far at all ...

It seems a nothing place, just a road off of a road. But drive down that well-maintained lane off of Highway 87/260 and it opens onto a little piece of paradise — the Tonto Natural Bridge.

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Board election for Northern Gila County Sanitary District

Three seats on the board of directors for the Northern Gila County Sanitary District are up for election in November. LaRon Garrett, Guy Pfister and Patrick Underwood currently hold the seats.

DPS seeks witnesses to fatal crash

Detectives are looking for anyone that may have witnessed Wednesday’s rollover that killed a 7-year-girl south of Payson.

Advice: Don’t try to scam police chief

Last week, Payson Police Chief Don Engler received an emotional plea for help from a woman via e-mail. Turns out it was all a scam.

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Police remind parents to talk to kids

What police initially thought was an attempted child abduction is turning out to be more of a misunderstanding. Last week, a mother told Tonto Apache Police that a man had tried to pick up her 8-year-old son after he got off the school bus.

Community Almanac

U.S. Senate candidate Jeff Flake, who is in a hotly contested primary race with Wil Cardon, will appear at a Meet and Greet at the Payson Republican Club Headquarters, 616 S. Beeline Highway, from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Independents can help Arizona

With the recent surge in Independent voter registrations in Gila County, I’ve become cautiously optimistic that our county can help steer our Legislature toward a more moderate and progressive posture in the next legislative session.

Once again our mayor sees the bigger picture

It was nice to read through to the end of the Sun Devil coverage in the Friday, Aug. 3 Roundup.

Gould’s campaign literature wrong

I have been bombarded with negative ads from Congressman Gosar’s opponent, Ron Gould, stating that Congressman Gosar has voted to fund ACORN, voted for Obamacare, voted to increase the debt, etc. Well let’s look at the facts.

Tired of shiny catch phrases distracting from real issues

I have heard Darrell Stubbs speak at several meetings that he is running for Gila County sheriff on a platform of: “As the county’s top law enforcement official, I will take back our county!”

Rational debate on gun control elusive

In a recently published letter to the editor, the writer claimed that if Gabby Gifford and her entourage had been armed, they would never have been attacked.

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Tonto Bridge’s true friends

“Friends show their love in times of trouble.” Euripides

About 200 Rim Country residents on Saturday demonstrated that they’re not just fair weather friends of Tonto Natural Bridge State Park.

Both parties failing American Dream

Working families are facing unprecedented economic uncertainty in Arizona, but our leaders in Washington have failed to solve the problem.

Still dreaming the American Dream

There’s been a lot of talk lately about class and income. Perhaps no one has talked about the issue more than President Obama.

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International theatre company coming to cast local children

The famed Missoula Children’s Theatre Company (MCT) will come to Payson the week of Aug. 13 to find cast members for its version of Betty Lou and the Country Beast. Longhorn Theatre, will co-produce this theatre event.

Should you take a pension buyout?

Have you recently received a pension buyout offer? If so, you need to decide if you should take the buyout, which could provide you with a potentially large lump sum, or continue accepting your regular pension payments for the rest of your life.

Payson gets faster Internet speeds

Suddenlink recently increased speeds for residential Internet services in Payson, at no added charge. Suddenlink services with download speeds of 1.5, 10 and 20 Megabits per second (Mbps) have been increased to 3, 15 and 30 Mbps, respectively.

AARP Arizona visits for conversations on health and retirement

AARP Arizona will host two community conversations, a morning and afternoon session, in Payson on Thursday, Aug. 16 on health and retirement security.

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Senior Center plans celebrations

The month of August has no official holidays. It is a quiet month, some may even say dull, but August has its own charm. After the excitement of July, the pace slows down (until the rodeo comes to town in Payson).

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Mountain bikers set for Fire on the Rim race

Already excitement is in the air because the Fire on the Rim mountain bike race will return on Sept. 15. “Last year most of the registration happened the day of the race,” said Steve Morken, race organizer and owner of THAT Brewery & Pub in Pine. “This year we already have as many registrants as raced last year.”

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Paying it forward

Payson firefighter of the year a mentor

Jason Tutay never dreamed of being a firefighter. In fact, he wanted to be a cop. A lucky break and a helpful mentor led him to the firehouse a dozen years ago.

Clubs and Organizations

Elks members and guests are welcome to enjoy lunch at the Lodge from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday; Friday dinner from 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.; and Sunday dinner from noon to 5 p.m.

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Little Anglers shine at Rosie

With two of three Western Outdoor News (WON) Little Angler bass tournaments turning into successes, organizers are praising the inaugural programs as fun ways to introduce children to the sport of fishing.

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PEC hosts women’s pro barrel racing

The Arizona Women’s Professional Rodeo Association-hosted Open 4D Barrel Races held Aug. 4 at the Payson Event Center gave some of the finest competitors from around the state the opportunity to test their skills against one another.

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Opening week wraps up

Football coach focuses on building good attitudes

First-year Payson High School football coach Jake Swartwood’s focus during last week’s gridiron practices, the first of the preseason, was on developing good attitudes in the about 70 prospective players who turned out.

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Varsity nips 2009 for alumni crown

2012 volleyball team edges out veterans

The Fifth Annual Lady Longhorn Alumni Volleyball Tournament turned into a barnburner in which four teams, including a current PHS squad, battled for bragging rights as Payson’s best.

Annual Powder Puff game will raise money for STUGO

Payson High School’s annual Powder Puff football game will be played 7 to 9 p.m. Friday, Aug. 10, on PHS field. The game will pit a team of seniors and freshmen against an opponent of sophomore and juniors.

Monday, August 6

Police looking for witnesses to Wednesday's fatal wreck

Detectives are looking for anyone that may have witnessed Wednesday’s rollover that killed a 7-year-girl south of Payson.

Friday, August 3

We have the pet companion for you

We all have options. Whether they are exactly what we want or not, we have them. The Humane Society of Central Arizona has wonderful options for you when it comes to adopting a new companion.

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Police catch bank robber

Homeless man with fake bomb robs Payson credit union

Police arrested a transient Wednesday afternoon who allegedly held up a local credit union with a simulated homemade bomb. Although the package contained just wires, metal pieces and duct tape, it gave employees quite a fright.

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Child dies in tragic crash

Daughter of assault suspect fleeing police dies in highway rollover

A 7-year-old Payson girl died Wednesday at the end of a tragic chain of events that started with her father’s alleged assault on a woman and ended with a rollover accident on a deadly stretch of Highway 87, police said.

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Making the grade

High School jumps, but middle school stumbles in ratings

The latest state grades for schools statewide brought tears and cheers to Payson, where Payson High School’s ranking jumped to an “A” and Rim Country Middle School got another “D.”

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Community Almanac

Kaitie’s Closet is once again looking for clothing, shoes and donations for area school children. The demand is greater than ever this year, so please help us help the children here in Rim Country.

It’s called evil

Seems it started in the ’60s, we let shrinks start calling evil by some other name that they invented to explain why they thought people did horrible things.

Story about Christian Austin’s family is great example of why national health care is needed

Michele Nelson, Roundup staff reporter, stated our problem in Gila County and Arizona, and America with her article “Christian comes home” in Tuesdays Roundup.

Feezor will be a step up in the county recorder’s office

Mac Feezor is running for Gila County recorder — and there couldn’t be a better match in the world! He is a meticulous detail-oriented person.

Another Rim Country old-timer has passed away

Another old-timer has passed on. Hazel Dudley Owens, age 93, passed away in Weed, Calif. on July 26 with her son and family at her side.

Feeling schizo about grades

We can’t tell whether to be reassured or frightened by the state’s latest attempt to grade our schools. The whole thing makes us feel like a bipolar schizophrenic.

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The Greasy Pole

Abortion, taxes, deficits spur furious debate — baffling contradictions

My. My. Allegations, fulminations, denegations. All of a sudden, every elected official you ever heard of has been putting out press releases, standing on principle and lacerating the opposition.

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Incumbent county treasurer faces rare challenge

Challenger wants better services for northern Gila County

One Democrat and one Republican are running for the office of Gila County treasurer, making the Aug. 28 primary easy, but the Nov. 4 general election a real contest.

Why does Payson have some of Arizona’s highest development fees?

While listening to the radio recently, the owner of a painting company in Chicago lamented how the housing debacle had left his business in the doldrums and he had been forced to lay off 12 of his 15 employees.

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Overman Designs expanding out of state

As housing prices plummeted and residents found ways to cut costs, opening a jewelry store and trying to convince them to buy a $75,000 diamond ring four years ago was a gamble.

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Rim Country historians enjoy packed house

Maybe the hot Dutch-oven biscuits lured the crowds or maybe folks just care about Rim Country history. Either way, people packed the house last weekend for the History and Biscuits program at the Payson LDS church.

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Candidates flock to school meeting

The Payson School Board opened its Monday meeting to the public to solicit comments on board goals, but wound up hosting an impromptu candidate forum.

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Sea-faring firefighters, police face off in a good cause

No oars. No waterproof material. No nautical touches. Firefighters and police are busy creating makeshift rafts for a heated race in a good cause at the Aug. 4 National Night Out kickoff event.

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Foreign Policy Forum hears talk on Taiwan

When Chinese officials trying to decide whether to build a solar cell assembly plant in Payson showed up to look around, they were impressed to find Payson Recreation and Tourism Director Cameron Davis eager to conduct the tour — in Mandarin.

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Pine-Strawberry people inspire awe

The landscapes of Pine and Strawberry take your breath away, but it is the people who are awe-inspiring — people like Roger and Carol Fornoff, who work with the Senior Citizens Affairs Foundation in the Meals-On-Wheels program and volunteer at the Pine Thrift Store.

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Town to upgrade weather

The Payson Town Council recently approved spending $41,000 to get a nice, new, $250,000 all-weather guidance system at the Payson Regional Airport.

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Summer has flown by too quickly

It was difficult to type in August so soon. It seems as if the summer has flown by much too quickly. I have not gone fishing as much as I have wanted or gone somewhere I have not been to, but wait ... that’s not true.

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For those who love a rainy night

Mother Nature certainly has a way of evening things out, doesn’t she? Through the beginning of July our Rim Country had been as dry as a bone and I was beginning to wonder if monsoon season would ever get here.

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Ever ask what made you, you? Part II

Last week we talked about how much pure chance affects what we learn as we pass through life. I find it a fascinating subject, perhaps because I discovered early in life that I am a person who is able to change.

Payson niners update

The Payson Niners held their month-end 9-hole best-ball scramble and luncheon on July 26 at Payson Golf Course.

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Olympic dreams come true for former Rim Country archer

Brady Ellison brings home silver medal in team archery competition

As a 13-year-old seventh-grader at Rim Country Middle School in 2002, Brady Ellison’s dream was to compete in archery in the Olympics. At the time, his mother, Julie, believed as lofty as it sounded, the Olympics was an attainable goal, “He does have a natural talent for the sport.”

Remembering one of the all-time greats

Art Malone, one of small-town Arizona’s greatest-ever football players, died July 27 at 64 years of age. Malone distinguished himself as a star running back at Arizona State University and later with the Atlanta Falcons and Philadelphia Eagles, but it was his exploits as a prep star at then Class 3A Eloy Santa Cruz High School, at which many continue to marvel.

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Devils Redux

Tontozona showcases Rim Country

The heat-weary desert dweller wheeled his high-dollar SUV into the Camp Tontozona parking lot, anxious to spend a few precious hours watching his beloved Sun Devil football team prepare for the upcoming season.

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Payson to welcome ASU Sun Devils

Fans encouraged to cheer entourage on its way to Camp Tontozona

The Arizona State University Sun Devil football team, itching to turn a stay at Camp Tontozona into a to a bowl game invitation, will receive a big-time high-country welcome when it passes through Payson on its way to the scenic mountain retreat.

Forest Service seeks forest health grant applications

Applications are now being accepted by the Eastern Arizona Counties Resource Advisory Committee (RAC) for projects that can be funded under the Title II authority of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self-Determination Act recently extended through 2013. Successful applicants receive funding on a reimbursement basis.

Payson strikes deal with Star Valley to provide inspections

What’s well trained, under-utilized and can save Payson and Star Valley money at the same time? Sounds like a trick question — but there’s a simple answer: A building inspector.

Cross-country bike riders team up with local volunteers to help Time Out Shelter

The Payson Area Habitat for Humanity (PAHH) on Aug. 10 will join forces with Bike & Build volunteers to complete A Brush with Kindness project at Payson’s Time Out Shelter, as well as several other projects around town.

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Stay safe during the Rim’s summer storms

Hello again, fellow Creekers. We have had some great storms in Christopher Creek this summer season with lots of rain here recently.

Jesse Smith wins PMGA major title

Crown Jesse Smith king of the Payson Men’s Golf Association. He became ruler July 25 by winning A flight, first-place honors in the three-week Club Championship tournament at Payson Golf Course.

Court’s ruling on health care spurs lots of heat — not much light

Seems like just about every elected official and candidate in Arizona went into rhetorical hyper drive last week when the U.S. Supreme Court upheld the politically pivotal Affordable Healthcare Act, with one major reservation that may cast a long political shadow in Arizona. Chief Justice Roberts surprised many of the pundits when he upheld the linchpin requirement that everyone must buy health insurance or face fines.

Ever ask what made you, you?

Good question, isn’t it? What made you, you? It is no doubt true that we inherit traits through our genes which are a large part of who we are, but I can’t help feeling that a lot of what makes us uniquely us comes through experiences strewn by chance across life’s path.

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Thinking outside the box

Strange theory reveals secrets of the universe, the logic of sycamore leaves and why even smart people struggle with new ideas

I finally got Drake Larson together with both sycamore leaves and Payson Mayor Kenny Evans. Moreover, I have been entrusted with a formula that may win me an invitation to Oslo if Drake gets a Nobel Prize.

Thursday, August 2

Police investigating bank robbery

Police have surrounded Arizona State Credit Union after a man robbed the bank just before 12:30 p.m.

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Posse assists in Fossil Creek rescue

Horse-drawn litter helps distressed hiker

Local search and rescue groups put an inventive, horse-based hauling technique to test this weekend to rescue an injured hiker in the recently re-opened Fossil Creek.

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Two vie to unseat incumbent

Pair of Republicans face off in primary in hopes of becoming new county assessor

With a swooning real estate market and rising property tax rates, Gila County Assessor Don Hom faces one of the few election challenges in his 24-year reign.

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Pine water district explains outages

Mechanical failures, not sabotage, blamed for loss of two pumps that drained system

Booster pump mechanical failures at Milk Ranch No.1 well and the Strawberry Hollow Filter Building caused the severe, June 18-23 water service outages in Pine and Strawberry, officials revealed on Saturday.

Payson man charged with sex assault

Reportedly groped 12-year-old who was staying at friend’s house

A 39-year-old Payson man faces child molestation charges after allegedly assaulting a 12-year-old in her sleep earlier this month.

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Community college group slaps down GCC

Sorry, guys, you just ain’t a real college. That’s the latest face-slap delivered by the Arizona Community College Presidents Council, whose members have lobbied consistently to make sure Gila Community College doesn’t get its fair share of state funding.

Wednesday, August 1

Good 2 Go

Payson’s Fifth Annual National Night Out Family Fun Day will be from noon to 8 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 4 at Green Valley Park. National Night Out will be observed around the community from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 7.

Getaway Around Rim Country

Come join members of the Community Presbyterian Church on First Friday, Aug. 3 for dessert, coffee and music from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Pastor Chuck Proudfoot will be making his infamous “Black Beast” dessert — a chocolate lovers’ delight. Community Presbyterian Church is at 800 W. Main St.

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A Taste at the Bridge benefit

The Friends of the Tonto Natural Bridge State Park will present “A Taste at the Bridge” from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 4. This early evening setting will present the Tonto Natural Bridge at its finest, as well as western art by local artists, wine, light finger food, music, raffles and door prizes.

DASH to lower blood pressure

You’ve written about the DASH diet in the past. The directions for it are quite general. Can you provide an itemized list of what is good and what is bad to eat?

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Red Rock Romp

A dash through Sedona thunderstorms reveals the dark side of vortexes

A clap of thunder and a flash of light sent two-dozen frightened people scurrying down Cathedral Rock. A monsoonal cell had formed overhead, interrupting a peaceful, meditative hike on one of the area’s most popular picture spots.

Potentate of Time

Matthew Bridges an 1800th century psalmist and musician has written a famous musical composition focusing on Christ and crowning Him King. Since Bridges, many additional psalmists and musicians have added other stanzas to this hymn. This spiritual anthem enfolds the glorious yet holy mystery of God and His continual interactive commitment to His covenant promise to mankind.

Rim Country Places

Chapter 1 – Places have names

Driving south out of Payson on Highway 87 my imagination goes into overdrive. Each place we pass brings to mind stories of people and events: Ox Bow Hill, the Sam Haught and Chilson ranches, Rye Creek, Deer Creek, Mazatzal Mountains, Sunflower.

At the Movies

The Dark Knight Rises

If you haven’t been to the flickers yet this year, this is the one to see. This is the first genuine five saw blade film of 2012. That match made in movie heaven between actor Christian Bale and director Christopher Nolan that we know well from the two previous Batman films in this series continues and improves in the final episode.

Mangos and kid-friendly meals

Is your family tired of eating the same thing for breakfast, lunch or dinner? Not sure if trying a new recipe fits into your busy schedule? It’s easier than you think to break out of the usual routine, especially when you have these quick, kid-friendly recipes that bring a taste of the tropics to your meals.

Driving through the Canadian Rockies

For many years I have wanted to re-visit the Canadian Rockies. I had been there twice in the past, each time traveling by train from Vancouver. The train ride itself is wonderful moving through the beautiful Rockies in the luxury of the Canadian, which has today been completely renovated.