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Favorites of the month from the area’s abundant offerings in art and entertainment



Museum of Northern Arizona, 7 p.m. Flagstaff Shakespeare Festival kicks off its fourth season this night with Shakespeare’s comedic tale centered on power, gender and relationship. As FlagShakes puts it, “Schemes are hatched, dowries won, and freedom lost in a madcap romp that explores family dynamics and the meaning of love, and questions how we treat others.” Performances through July 22. Tickets are $12.50-$22.50 and available through


Fort Tuthill County Park, 2-8 p.m. Enjoy tasty offerings from more than 30 Arizona food trucks under the pines at Fort Tuthill. Diverse cuisine—fish ‘n chips, Korean barbecue, burgers, wings and more—to fill everyone’s appetite, no reservations or fancy attire necessary. Free parking. Entry donation of $3 per person helps the Shadows Foundation of Flagstaff provide aid and assistance to those with life-threatening disease. Or, bring canned food for the Flagstaff Family Food Center.



Foxglenn Park; Saturday 9 a.m.-6 p.m., Sunday 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Celtic culture will be on display with the 20th annual Arizona Highland Celtic Festival hosted by the Northern Arizona Celtic Heritage Society. Music by the Knockabouts, the Wicked Tinkers and The Ploughboys, plus Highland games, dance and bagpipe competitions, reenactments, workshops, and special games and activities for kids. Admission varies from $5-$30. Tickets available through and at the gate.


Museum of Northern Arizona, 5-8 p.m. Don’t wait for Friday, join the happy hour and summer concert series in the museum courtyard each Thursday. Galleries and shops open until 8 p.m. Beer, wine and food available for cash purchase. Featuring Secret Handshake July 12, the Knockabouts July 19, and Lynn Timmings Edwards and Charly Spining July 26. Entrance: $6, free for museum members.


Orpheum Theater, 5:30 p.m. Lift off to an amazing year of celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of humankind’s first steps on the moon, Flagstaff’s contributions to that effort and its ongoing role in space exploration and science. The Lunar Legacy Launch party begins with moonthemed presentations, exhibits and family activities. Stay for music by Planet Sandwich and Lucky Lenny. Food and drinks, including the new Apollo IPA from Grand Canyon Brewing, available for purchase. All ages welcome. Free admission.


Heritage Square, 6-8 p.m. Free performances each Friday evening of the summer are presented by the Heritage Square Trust. The schedule includes Nolan McKelvey July 13, Pinon Pickers July 20, and the Circus Academy of Tucson July 27. july18



Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine



Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine

The stone fireplace is the dining room’s centerpiece. Rough wood braces and paneling rekindle rustic beginnings. Pierced tin chandelier shades and Tiffany lamps complete the enduring effect. The Todds built the property in 1902 before Gary and Mary Garland cultivated the land as a resort for nearly five decades. Their name remained with the business for two transition years before I love to Garland’s Oak Creek Lodge rebranded as Canyon on Oak Creek in 2017. surprise guests Orchard Preserving the cherished landmark and its with subtle and beautiful food was paramount. Seventeen bungalows are scattered over pleasant twists” 10 lush acres, luring guests to the tranquil setting for many reasons. Some marry there, and others return regularly to celebrate the date. Dr. Rog Jenkins and his wife Dottie came from Prescott to mark 36 years of marriage as they have for previous anniversaries. After hiking Sedona or slipping down Slide Rock, Orchard Canyon gathers guests at 4:00 p.m. for afternoon tea. “It’s a chance for the back of the house to get creative,” Stober said. “Regulars take the opportunity to check out the evening’s imaginative menu.” At 6:00 p.m., it’s cocktail hour. Specials are always on offer, like a saffron-citrus martini or a stormy pineapple-tini blended with dark rum. A full bar and wine menu includes Arizona and

– Hawkins


Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine

Orchard Canyon bottles. A bitters project fosters a comprehensive library of 90 flavors for mixology purposes. The bar team also has gleaned the orchards, soaking Asian or damson plums in bourbon and pressing cider from 15 varieties of apples for simple refreshment. This farm-to-table approach guides the menu in season. Besides plums and apples, white and yellow peaches, cherries and apricots are plucked from the orchards, while early greens, fresh herbs—including six varieties of basil—squash, onions, carrots, garlic and more sprout in Orchard Canyon’s organic gardens. Executive chef Michael Hawkins revels in his sixth season and collaborates with sous chef Dan Natseway on themes. They utilize a range of cultural experiences and new techniques while honoring menu traditions. “I love to surprise guests with subtle and pleasant twists,” Hawkins said. While breakfast and dinner are included for resort guests, outside reservations need only a couple of days’ notice.



orthern Arizona University did not have a ceramics program when Don Bendel arrived in Flagstaff in 1970. Armed with two degrees in art education and a Master of Fine Arts degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Bendel was recruited to jumpstart a program for aspiring potters. Thirty years later, NAU had one of the most robust ceramics programs in the country, and it earned international recognition for kiln design and construction. Bendel made it so with his unflappable energy, a fierce dedication to his students and a distinctive sense of humor. He formed a decades-long ripple effect of passion that extended to every person fortunate enough to know him. Students arrived at NAU to study engineering, Spanish, physical therapy and other majors. One class with Bendel and many ended up with degrees in ceramics. Why? Because Bendel knew how to teach. He created an environment that was driven by student creativity, trial and error and individual growth. Students built kilns, dug clay, tested glazes and attended conferences. They collected cow patties by Lake Mary and fired them in kilns with chicken for a cookout. Bendel played his harmonica, drank coffee, ate doughnuts, made art and changed lives. Former students know this is not an exaggeration. “I learned more about being a whole person than I did about being a potter.” — Joni Pevarnik. “He fostered the impression that I was figuring it all out on my own.” —Margaret Josey. He literally changed my idea of who I was, what I could be, and thus, the direction of my life.” —David Crane


Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine

Don Bendel’s far-reaching influence

Bendel did not make this impact by teaching by the book. He insisted on experimentation and discovery. His classic answer to any question was, “I don’t know. Try it and see what happens!” The professor would instigate parades through the hallways, throw TVs off the roof, and give wrong glaze recipes to students so they would learn a valuable lesson: Don’t trust anyone except yourself when making art. “Everything he ever did was art because everything he did bore his unmistakable style and uniqueness. His life is an organic whole in which everything holds together in a crazy and yet remarkable way,” says close friend Timothy Hunt. Bendel created an environment of individual creative expression, but it was far from insulated. In 1973, Bendel advocated for Flagstaff to host the National Council on Education for the Ceramic Arts conference. Students and educators from all over the country came to work and engage with northern Arizona potters. Thus began a long history of conferences Bendel organized to encourage dialogue between ceramic artists worldwide. Bendel presented papers and conducted workshops in New Zealand, Estonia, Finland, Russia and Japan to promote the student-centered program at NAU. He brought renowned artists to work in Flagstaff, including Don Reitz, Paul Soldner, Peter Voulkos, Rudy Autio and Jim Leedy. He invented the Bendel Burner, a system for gas-fired kilns, completed a Doctorate in Art Education and researched the clays of Arizona. But perhaps Bendel’s most significant achievement was a collaboration and lifelong friendship with




Japanese master potter Yukio Yamamoto. In 1984, Bendel heard that Yukio was conducting a residency and exhibition at Arizona State University and was determined to get him to Flagstaff. Together, they undertook the building of traditional Tozan kilns on NAU’s campus. In six months, Flagstaff was home to the only noborigama (climbing kiln) and anagama (cave kiln) kilns outside Japan. The ambitious project utilized 33,000 bricks and the help of 196 people. For the next 13 years, Bendel and Yamamoto worked to promote Japanese and U.S. artistic collaboration. They shared the sentiment that being a ceramicist was 50 percent making pots and 50 percent growth as a human being. It’s all in the process. In the midst of this, Bendel was creating art. Every piece is a testament to his sense of humor and determination to work outside the bubble. If it was perfectly square, there was no art to it. He made horns and “Bendelphones,” musical instruments as art. He fired trees and cactuses. He invented game boards. He threw pots, platters, plates, mugs, bottles, bowls, and teapots. He created hubcaps decorated with everything from elephants to Einstein. He had work shown in over 150 exhibitions. Even with a regents’ professorship and a Viola Award for lifetime achievement, Bendel is best known as a humble, unassuming, lighthearted artist with a lopsided, toothless grin. He built an amazing life with his wife Ann and is a beloved father, grandfather and great-grandfather. In 2010, Bendel was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s disease, and while his mind isn’t the same, the 22

Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine

artist is just as charismatic, humorous and energetic. He eats lots of doughnuts, makes a little bit of art and spends lots of time with family. He says everything is “pretty good, all right.” The Flagstaff Arts Council’s exhibition Legacy: Don Bendel honors the impact Bendel has had in Flagstaff and the field of ceramics. More than 80 Bendel works will be on display alongside select pieces by former students. There is no better way to honor the man, artist and educator whose ultimate lesson was how to live life and love every minute. Emily Lawhead is an independent curator for the Flagstaff Arts Council who is proud to have known Bendel as “Bop” her entire life.

Legacy: Don Bendel is showing through Aug. 25 at the Coconino Center for the Arts, 2300 N. Fort Valley Road, Flagstaff. The gallery is open Tuesday through Saturday 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. july18


By Janel States James

Finding Normal ike many high schools, the halls of Flagstaff High are chaotic, full of the uncertainty and elation of teenagers. Katherine Pastor, one of four counselors at Flag High, is charged with the care of 489 of the school’s 1,600 students. Pastor is a college admissions adviser, academic adviser and student council adviser. She gives civics lessons, counsels, negotiates the difficult realities of bullying and harassment, and helps those with anxiety and depression. She is a shoulder to lean on and a high-five in the hallway, catching students before they slip through the cracks and boosting them into post-secondary opportunities.

Katherine Pastor is pictured in a hall at Flag High in June. Photo by Nancy Wiechec

Pastor’s tenure at Flag High began 13 years ago, when the burdens of teenagers were much the same, although before the challenges of the smartphone and Snapchat, she says. It was also before everything changed for Pastor personally in a sequence of surprising moments that revealed an awful truth: a tumor had been quietly growing in the back right quadrant of her brain, slowly applying pressure to her brain stem until it could no longer be ignored. At first, her symptoms seemed harmless, a plugged ear after an international flight, troublesome pressure in her head when she made the drive from Flagstaff to Phoenix. Mistaking the symptoms for allergies, Pastor’s doctor prescribed allergy medication. When there was no improvement, Pastor decided to try home remedies. She chewed gum. She drank water while hanging upside down. She tried an ear wax cone. And then she just got used to it. “No one ever thinks, ‘Oh, I have a major situation,’” she says. “I was just doing my thing and not really paying attention.” Then in the fall of 2012, her ear began to ring, followed shortly by dizzy spells so brief

july 18 25



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Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine  

July 2018

Northern Arizona's Mountain Living Magazine  

July 2018