Library Grant Brings Back Cooking Classes

Thanks to a $6,100  grant, Peggy Martin, CNN, will again be teaching classes on nutritious dishes at the Payson Public Library.

Photo by Andy Towle. |

Thanks to a $6,100 grant, Peggy Martin, CNN, will again be teaching classes on nutritious dishes at the Payson Public Library.


The Payson Public Library will bring back the popular cooking classes offered by Peggy Martin and add a series of health presentations, with the help of a grant.

The $6,100 Library Services and Technology Act grant will purchase materials related to health and nutrition for programs this fall.

Among the programs offered:

• Peggy Martin, CNN, will offer healthy cooking classes starting at 1 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 10, focusing on healthy food choices available at farmers markets. Registration is required as space is limited. Call (928) 474-9260, or stop by the library at 328 N. McLane Road to sign up.

• John Hancock, RN, CDE, will discuss diabetic health issues at the library at 4 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 13. Registration is also required.

The “Promoting Library Service and Community Resources for the Health of Payson Area Seniors” project was supported with funds granted by the Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records Agency, a division of the Arizona Secretary of State.

Cooking classes

• 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 10, Topic: Fresh, local and healthy from farmers markets.

Using fresh ingredients close to home, like locally grown greens, create delicious green smoothies. Using homegrown tomatoes, make easy fresh tomato sauce with angel hair pasta, then create a homegrown spicy tomato pepper salsa.

• 1 p.m. to 4 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 24, Topic: How to use squash and peppers.

Martin’s passion is mind, body and spirit wellness. A certified nutritionist, she believes that wholeness comes from nurturing and uniting the body, mind and spirit. She has worked in the nutrition field for 20 years as a chef, trainer in whole foods preparation, wellness seminar organizer, nutrition columnist and other projects. She currently works with Southwest Behavioral Health Services.

• Chef Gary Bedsworth has agreed to join in presenting the kick-off of another four-month series of “Cookin’ For Health” at the Payson Public Library. He retired in 2001 after 40 years in the hospitality industry. He has both culinary and associate of arts degrees from the City College of San Francisco and a bachelor’s of science degree in business and hospitality management from Michigan State University.

He has worked in restaurants, private clubs, hotels, catering, health care, management consulting, and consulting chef. His management responsibilities have ranged from small restaurants to multi-million-dollar systems general management.

He served as system director of Food & Nutrition Services for the Samaritan Health Care System in Phoenix and Tucson Medical Center in addition to two other hospital systems with more than 1,000 patient beds.

Bedsworth is past president of the Scottsdale Bailliage of the Chaine des Rotisseurs and has chaired and judged several Regional Best Young Chef Rotisseur Competitions. The “Chaîne” is the oldest and one of the most prestigious gastronomic organizations in the world.


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