A bevy of enthusiastic and civic-minded Zane Grey Kiwanis club members showed up bright and early March 3 at Pine-Strawberry School armed with lessons and games aimed at motivating students in their celebration of Dr. Seuss’ birthday.
In Mrs. Paine’s second grade classroom, Kiwanis members Kathyrn Lee and Kathy Almendarez read Dr. Seuss’ “Yertle the Turtle” and then helped the students construct turtle crafts.
In Mrs. Barlow’s first grade classroom, Dan Tantimonaco and Diane Greer read “One Fish Two Fish” and followed it up with a lesson on graphing and addition using, of all things, Goldfish crackers.
Kiwanis members Donna Barker and Jan Clark, a former teacher at the school, read “Ten Apples up on Top” to Mrs. Allen’s preschool class. Following the reading of the book, the students played an apple game, tasted apples and graphed results of the ones they liked most.
Former school superintendent/principal Mike Clark returned to set up a photo booth in which he snapped pictures of each class posing with cut-outs of Thing One, Thing Two and Cat in the Hat.
About the lessons, Jan Clark deems them, “Fun-filled hours of Dr. Seuss books and related activities.”
Science club shines
In a sterling show of collective intellect from small-town students, a bevy of Pine School’s aspiring young scientists captured seven bronze, two silver and five gold medals at the Gila County Regional Science Fair held Feb. 26 at Bullion Plaza Cultural Center and Museum in Miami.
The medalists qualified for the county showdown by winning top honors in the Pine School fair contested Jan. 27 to 31.
Pine School’s five first place county finishers now advance to the granddaddy of all competitions — the Arizona State Science and Engineering Fair to be held March 31 to April 2 at the Phoenix Convention Center.
There, the local students will challenge fair winners from all Arizona’s counties.
Abby Ast, Krislyn Alford, Meredith Kiekintveld, Joshua Paine and Bobbie Rose Price are both the Pine and county winners who will advance to science’s version of the Big Show of Science.
Brandon LaFave and Ryan LaFave took second at county.
Third place finishers included Makenzie Abney, Hope Carl, Adam Leneberg, Becca Ralls, Brittany Fleming, Samantha Jones and Maddy Abney.
Also, Emma Paine and Jorege Ramirez also participated and “did a great job,” said Pine School Science Fair sponsor Stacy Flanagan.
Just weeks ago, Emma Paine — a fifth-grader — won the school spelling bee.
In Miami, Pine students did particularly well in the medical/health competition with Ast winning the elementary division gold and Kiekintveld taking first in the junior division.
Alford was first in junior division animal science, Paine was top gun in elementary division chemistry and Price was the No. 1 scientist in junior division plant science. Jershua Paine and Alford were grand prize winners at the Pine School Science Fair.
Long awaited rain cancels work day
It’s not often that those of us who live in the shadows of the Mogollon Rim celebrate the cancellation of a very worthy event.
But that’s exactly what unfolded Saturday, March 1, when the Fuel Reduction Committee opted to cancel a four-hour work session on the Bearfoot Trail.
Rain, which everyone has wanted for the past several months, forced cancellation of the work session.
“Yes,” one elated trail worker shouted when told the work day was canceled.
Work will resume from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. tomorrow, Saturday, March 8 and continue on March 16, 22 and 29.
Volunteers should bring their own lunch, snacks and water to all the sessions except March 22 when the Fuel Reduction Committee will foot the bill for the grub.
The session is also being called a “Major Work Event” on the trail located north of Pine near Strawberry.
Volunteers should meet at mile post 269.
ATV Wickenburg ride
Members of the Rim Country Riders ATV club are enthusiastically gearing up for the Second Annual Wickenburg Ride March 28-30.
Riders have the choice of participating in all three days or parts of the event.
The ride tips off at 4 p.m., Friday, March 28 with a happy hour and barbecue dinner at the Best Western Rancho Grande, which will serve as the event’s home base.
The dinner is free for members, but $5 for guests.
The following day, Saturday, riders will gather at the hotel for a 9 a.m. start to the day-long ATV ride that winds out of picturesque Wickenburg through canyons and over high desert vistas to abandoned mines, caves and graveyards.
Following the ride, at 6 p.m. Saturday, club members and their guests will rally at Anita’s Cocina Mexican Restaurant for a dinner sure to be highlighted by a plethora of yarns and adventures about a day in the rough country with friends.
A few years ago, our family traveled to near Wickenburg for a late fall quail hunt.
Finding hunting after the early morning hours not up to snuff, we decided to explore, on our ATVs, the Hassayampa River.
Hassayampa means “upside down river” and it’s easy to see why — much of the Hassayampa flows underground through Wickenburg from its origins in the Bradshaw Mountains.
We slowly rode over stretches of the dry riverbed marveling at the riparian habitat, huge cottonwood trees, a box canyon, picturesque scenery and plenty of wildlife, except quail.
As awe inspiring as it is, there are words of caution — it is privately owned, which means visitors are on the honor system to pack out any trash or other items they take in.
It is unthinkable that Arizonans would clutter such a pristine place.
Around a campfire at night, we all agreed the area is a stunning place to ride, hike, camp and explore. It was particularly unique, because the area is much different than the Rim Country we live in with its ponderosa pines and juniper woodlands.
During our half-day trip over the Hassayampa’s sandy soil, we crossed paths with down-right friendly Wickenburg riders who warned us that although the river bed was dry, it would flood quickly when raining.
Sure enough, a torrential rainstorm accompanied by threatening lightning interrupted our sleep in the early morning hours prompting us to hastily pull up camp and retreat to the friendly confines of our Pine home.
The road to Box Canyon can be found by following SR 93 north out of Wickenburg and turning right on Rincon Road.
The road eventually crosses the Hassayampa bed twice before turning into a rough, rocky road to the river.
Once in the riverbed, we followed ATV tracks to Box Canyon.
For more information on the Rim Country Riders Wickenburg Ride call Linda (928) 476-2626, Dave (858) 722-5500 or Cindy (928) 978-1187.
Reservations at the Best Western Rancho Grand can be made by calling (866) 817-5113.
No Miley, no Justin?
There are probably no Miley Cyrus or Justin Bieber wannabes in Pine and Strawberry, but there are residents with the musical talents to send toes tapping and hearts singing.
Those with such musical gifts might want to consider accepting an invitation from the Pine Strawberry Business Community Event Committee to be among the local musicians chosen to perform in the upcoming spring and summer festivals.
Acts can be solo, trio or just friends who like to play together and are interested in strutting their talents in front of a crowd.
To set up an audition or for more information, call Sheri at (928) 476-3655 or Lynne at (928) 476-3090.
The First Baptist Church of Pine is once again hosting its free Community Supper from 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m., Wednesday March 19 at the church located at 4039 N. Highway 87.
Locals are invited to “Stop in for some good food and neighborly conversation.”
Call (928) 476-3552 for more information.