Christopher Creek’s cadre of Sun Devil faithful, along with one bad apple, crowded into Chuck’s Neighborhood Pub last Saturday. A number of folks were wearing their team colors and enthusiasm was high as the game came on the screen.

At stake was the Territorial Cup, of course, but the rivalry has a deeper, darker history.

Back in 1958, there was a proposition to make ASU the second university in the state. The debate was heated as those rascals down in Tucson wanted nothing more than to block the proposal. A clandestine group drove from the Old Pueblo one night to burn “NO 200” into the field on the 50-yard-line of the old Goodwin Stadium. Proposition 200 passed, but the feelings between the two schools did not. What a beginning to an in-state rivalry.

Back at the Pub, the game did not start well. The fellas were spending more time outside with their cigars and the gals turned their conversation to Christmas parties. There was more and more interest in the snack table. By halftime, a few had slipped out the door. John Turtchin, the lone “Mildcat,” was having a great time. Then those other guys scored three times, but netted only eight while ASU chipped away, getting closer. Attention was back on the game. The Devils were comin’. That fourth quarter was a barnburner. With the Sun Devils finally in the lead the last three minutes seemed an eternity. Then it was over — the Cup was back home. I rank it the best game in my 49 years of watching this duel.

Thanks to Chuck and Karen for opening the pub for the gathering. And to John — as the millennials would say — “Sorry, not sorry.”

Back to the gals’ conversation — They talked about the decorations along the Loop and the how nice the additional lighting along the Creekside RV Park looks. Santa has a new suit this year and it is rumored he will appear for the children’s Christmas Party at the new time of 3 p.m., Saturday, Dec. 15. That, as you know, will be at the fire station. That evening, at 6 p.m., the annual Christopher Creek Light Parade, with all the decorated quads and side-by-sides will tour the Creek. The final destination will be the Landmark, where the folks there will open up for the after party. It’s a potluck affair, but, to be sure, refreshments will be served. Josh and Samone, with their crew, will also open to host the CKFD firefighter Christmas dinner, highlighted by another Santa appearance. The gals’ discussion concluded with the question of who was willing to open their home for a New Year’s celebration. Our CKFD firefighters called to California returned home last week. That’s the good news. One of our captains took his wife and kids out to catch up on some shopping at a store in Payson. Returning to their vehicle, as the wife was tending to the youngest child, our guy, and the 9-year-old were loading up their purchases on the driver’s side. A car pulled in beside them, the driver got out and circled around his passenger side. He squeezed by behind the two unloading and saw his opportunity to make a snatch undetected. He grabbed the diaper bag, of all things. This jerk must have known what he was doing, for in the bag was a purse. In the purse was the wallet. In the wallet were cash, credit cards, driver’s license, photos, and the children’s social security cards. The missing bag was not discovered until the family returned home. There is security footage of a partial plate number and the face of the thief as he used a card to buy gas at a local station. Let’s hope that Payson detectives will give this their special attention and they find this jackwagon.

Thanksgiving dinner in Chandler was hosted by my niece, Amy, and her husband, Kevin, with 16 family members there. It was a nice afternoon and that was when they informed me that a couch was reserved for my overnight stay. Friday morning we were loading furniture into a U-Haul. My brother, Brian, has spent some time in the Creek the last month or so, attending a couple of parties and meeting more of the locals. He enjoyed telling everybody the story of buying a “ranch” in Iowa. His ranch is 10 acres, but is has a pond and a barn.

Back to Friday, with much help from his daughter, Amy, we had him loaded up and on his way by noon. By Sunday morning he found himself in the middle of Kansas and had run into a good ol’ Midwest blizzard. After losing a day, he finally made it to Iowa Monday night to begin his new adventure. Yippie-ki-yi-yo, brother ... and that’s another week in the Creek.

Contact the reporter 

tmcquerrey@payson.com

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