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June 7 - 20, 2014

CUSD celebrates A+ schools BY TRACY HOUSE

Three schools in the Chandler Unified School District have been awarded the distinction of A+, a prestigious three-year designation that celebrates outstanding schools as defined by a rigorous application process. Created by the Arizona Educational Foundation in 1983, the A+ School of Excellence program gives recognition to outstanding schools, provides a framework for school assessment and facilitates the sharing of best practices throughout schools based on common criteria. The process is lengthy and includes information on test scores, character education, leadership, parent

TARWATER: Robert Tarwater, Principal Jeff Hensley, Dean Abby Druck, Danell Tarwater and student council members proudly display Tarwater’s A+ banner. Submitted photo

involvement and academic pieces as part of the consideration. Observations are conducted by a team from AEF looking for evidence in the application and include interviews with students, parents and school staff. This year’s A+ recipients are Tarwater Elementary, Hancock Elementary and Basha High schools.

Robert and J. Danell Tarwater Elementary School Tarwater Principal Jeff Hensley says of the A+ designation, “I think it’s really a validation, a confirmation of what we are trying to do at the site. I know for the kids it really brings a lot of pride. They certainly can identify with what an A+ is. That holds meaning to them.” The principal at Tarwater since 2002, Hensley says, “For me it brings confirmation of what we’re trying to do in the community and brings a really strong sense of pride to a community. I’ve seen that in both times we’ve received it.” Tarwater received the award for the first time in 2009. The school held a celebration to commemorate the A+ award in which Robert and J. Danell Tarwater, the school’s namesakes, attended. “It was

Youth, recreation and transit at forefront of budget discussions BY JOAN WESTLAKE

The Chandler City Council approved several amendments to the fiscal year 2014-15 proposed budget during a special May 19 meeting. These amendments became part of the tentative budget voted on May 22. Residents can still voice their opinions about the budget until the final budget and capital improvement plan adoption at 7 p.m. Thursday, June 12, in the Chandler City Council Chambers, 88 E. Chicago St. The public meeting on the property tax levy adoption by the City Council is 7 p.m. Thursday, June 26, also in the council chambers. “This amendment process is built into the budget each year and allows members of the council to focus on some of the issues and challenges we are hearing about from our residents throughout the year,” Mayor Jay Tibshraeny says. “As you can see (in the accompanying amendment list), youth programs, recreation and transit needs remain at the forefront of our discussions. I personally felt that some of our aging facilities, like the Snedigar Sportsplex, which is 20 years old, were in need of



Chandler a special place to downtown redevelopment manager

Chandler student a U.S. Presidential Scholar BY MEGHAN MCCOY


Now that she’s had almost three months to acclimate to the city, Chandler’s Downtown Redevelopment Manager Kim Moyers says she is devoted to recruiting business and helping to guide development into downtown. Moyers, who worked as an economic development specialist for the Town of Queen Creek for six years prior to coming on board with the City of Chandler, says that downtown Chandler has held a special place in her heart for many years. “When we moved here from Kokomo, Indiana, to Arizona eight years ago, it was a big change for us. Going to downtown Chandler gave me a sense of home, and so we spent a lot of time SEE MANAGER PAGE 8

some attention.” Chandler Budget Manager Greg Westrum explains that these amendments do not increase the total proposed budget because funds are from the council’s contingency reserve. This year’s $400,000 reserve was included in the proposed budget initially formulated by the budget office and can be used now or in January. The safety and education of Chandler youth are at the heart of two of Vice Mayor Rick Heumann’s amendments. He says that saving lives is the goal of swim lesson scholarships for children from the city’s most economically challenged households. “Our fire department does an awesome job of bringing awareness with their anti-drowning campaign but we still have children dying. This is not swim team lessons or advance strokes...this is basic, life-saving lessons so if kids fall in the water, they can get to the edge or swim across the pool and aren’t going to drown,” says Heumann. “To put up $5,000 to save children’s lives, to me, is a very low amount.” The Chandler Education Coalition

PASSIONATE ABOUT DOWNTOWN: Kim Moyers, the downtown redevelopment manager for the City of Chandler, says downtown Chandler has always provided her with a sense of home. Submitted photo

Named a U.S. Presidential Scholar, Arizona Virtual Academy senior Anna Han feels like she “won the lottery.” “I never thought it would happen,” Han says. “There is no way to say who is going to get it and who is not. I knew a lot of people who were contenders and thought they were amazing.” The Presidential Scholar in the Arts will travel to Washington, D.C., this month and perform at the Kennedy Center during the award ceremonies. The U.S. Presidential Scholars Program was established in 1964, by executive order of the president, to recognize and honor some of the nation’s most distinguished graduating high school seniors. In 1979, the program was extended to recognize students who demonstrate exceptional talent in the visual, creative and performing arts. Each year, up to 141 students are named as Presidential Scholars. Arizona Virtual Academy Head of School Cindy Wright

F E AT U R E STO R I E S CUSD offers summer nutrition program. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . COMMUNITY . . . . . . . . . . .Page 9 Chandler chamber honors community members . . . . . . . . . . BUSINESS . . . . . . . . . . . . . Page 17 Soccer team building its own ‘Legacy’. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . YOUTH . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Page 27 Summer travel tips from YTC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . NEIGHBORS . . . . . . . . . . Page 49 CCA manager retiring after 26 years. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . ARTS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Page 59

See page 9

SanTan Family Fun . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .Center Section


More Community . . . . . . .1-15 Business . . . . . . . .16-26 Youth. . . . . . . . . . 27-38 Opinion. . . . . . . . 47-48 Neighbors. . . . . . 49-58 Arts . . . . . . . . . . . 59-66 Spirituality . . . . . 67-69 Directory . . . . . . .70-71 Classifieds. . . . . . .72-73 Where to eat . . . 74-78


June 7 – 20, 2014


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June 7 – 20, 2014


kind of neat. They’re both Chandler High products and for me it’s a really nice feeling. That was a pride factor for me that they were able to participate.”

T. Dale Hancock Elementary School This is the second time Connie Hull, principal of Hancock Elementary, has gone through this process at her school. Principal since 2003, she says, “We wanted to go back and renew. It’s a great way to self-evaluate. We wanted to go back and take a look at ourselves and say ‘Hey, are we still doing what we say we do.’” The in-depth process, Hull says, is very involved. “You evaluate every different part of what you do and that’s why it’s so good. As you’re going on day to day, sometimes you don’t get to all of those things and you don’t look that deeply at yourself and it’s just a really good process to do that.” Hancock’s second designation, Hull says, “is a big deal for us. It says that, yes, we’re on the right track, we’re continuing to focus toward excellence, our parents are very happy with us for doing this, they like to say their child goes to an A+ school, and it was really fun to watch the kids because they were excited about being part of an A+ school and winning an award.” Abby Druck, dean of students at Tarwater and Hancock, had the unique experience of going through the process at both schools.

BASHA: Basha High Student President Cody Conrad and Principal Ken James proudly display the A+ banner. Submitted photo

HANCOCK: Emerson Kelly, Wilson Arnpriester, Mikenna Rogerson, Principal Connie Hull, Haley Weddell, Dean Abby Druck, Bridget Pitts, Hayden Cristofano hold tight to the A+ banner. Submitted photo

“It was definitely an intense process, but I think it was a great way to see two different approaches. It was nice to see you can see success in two different ways,” Druck says. Druck explains that both schools share a sense of community—parents and teachers are committed to the students and both make them the priority. “There’s definitely good parent involvement in both places.” She explains that the two schools have different approaches and says that it’s nice to learn that there are different ways to achieve something. “I’ve been really lucky to watch how they approach things,” she says of both principals.

Basha High School Ken James, principal of Basha High School for six years, knows the rigors that go into an A+ designation. Basha, also, received its second A+ from AEF. James explains that because this was a reapplication year for Basha, the committee was looking to see what improvements have been made from the last three years. “It’s really about student achievement. What improvements have you made to increase student achievement or to affect student achievement? That’s one of the things we can pat ourselves on the back—that

we do change and we’re always looking to improve student achievement because that’s the No. 1 goal. And then create a strong learning culture here.” He says the committee did comment on the positive learning culture on campus during the process which included talking with students on campus at random to get feedback on academic practices. James says the students are proud of being an A+ school as well. “They took it as a big deal.” Receiving this award, James says “It’s a bragging point for anyone involved with Basha.” Tracy House is the news editor for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at

See page 58 for more photos of CUSD A+ schools.

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Daly running for City Council Chelle Daly, a member and past chairwoman of the Chandler Municipal Airport Commission, has announced her candidacy for Chandler City Council. Daly and her volunteers collected 1,500 signatures in support of her nomination to place her on the ballot for the Aug. 26 primary election. Daly, a 16-year Chandler resident, is a stay-at-home mom with three children. She was previously employed as a system engineer at Intel. Daly has more than 10 years’ experience volunteering with the City of Chandler and City Council concerning various issues critical to residents, including ambulance service, electronics and green waste recycling and airport development. “I believe that local government decisions have the greatest effect on our daily lives, and I am committed to making decisions that will benefit our community. Chandler is a great place to live, work and play. It is a ‘whole package community’—one where we can educate ourselves, establish our careers, raise our families, comfortably retire and pursue our greatest happiness,” says Daly. Daly is also the vice president of the Desert Cancer Foundation of Arizona and an avid Girl Scout volunteer. For more information on Daly and her campaign, visit


Carter says she is proud of Han. “She is an example of how this particular academic environment worked for her,” Carter says. “It wasn’t an easy road. It was rigorous for her.” Han says she began attending Arizona Virtual Academy when she was in eighth grade because the school provided her with the flexibility she needed to focus on her academics while pursuing her musical interest.

Longtime musician Han took up piano 13 years ago when her parents enrolled her in extracurricular activities. “I started out with group lessons and developed an appreciation for music,” she says. The 18-year-old has been with the same piano teacher, Fei Xu, since she began. She cites Xu as one of her influences. Han says for most presidential scholars, their eligibility is based on ACT and SAT scores. Han, on the other hand, was named a U.S. Presidential Scholar through her participation in the national program YoungArts. She explains that she sent an application to YoungArts and was invited to Miami for a week last January where she participated in workshops, master classes and performances. While Han was in Miami she performed a basic 10-minute piano audition, before being paired into chamber groups to learn a piece of

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AWARD WINNER: Arizona Virtual Academy senior Anna Han, a Chandler resident, was named a U.S. Presidential Scholar in the Arts. Submitted photo

music. “It was really fun. We got to know all the teachers there and learned a lot,” she says of her experience in Miami. “I got paired with another pianist. We did a dual piece.” Because Han was a junior when she participated, she was evaluated and considered as one of the 60 high school seniors to be nominated for this year’s scholar award.

June 7 – 20, 2014


“You get nominated for the presidential arts program, then you apply,” she says. “That application gets sent to the presidential scholar committee.” Han will be honored in Washington, D.C., during National Recognition Weekend. She, along with the other scholars, will receive the U.S. Presidential Scholars medallion at a White House-sponsored ceremony. She says a show with a storyline will be put on by all the performing arts scholars in the Kennedy Center. “I have never done something quite like it, so I am excited,” Han says. She says she is most excited to meet the other scholars because she is sure each one is amazing. This fall, Han plans on pursuing a bachelor’s of music degree at The Juilliard School, which is located in the Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York City. “Ideally I would like to perform. Music has been something I have been working towards since I was really young,” she says. “It’s a really difficult career to sustain. I want to bring it to more people. I am also interested in teaching.” Meghan McCoy is the Neighbors and Business section editor for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at


June 7 – 20, 2014



Early Literacy Campaign is a program founded by Heumann four years ago during the recession to pull together limited resources from the school district, the City, the business community nonprofits and private schools to benefit the students of Chandler. One of the events the coalition has successfully spearheaded for the past three years is the Safeway Science Spectacular, a three-day event that showcases the businesses, artists, students and innovators in the community. Now, Heumann says they are focusing on a serious educational situation: In some Chandler ZIP codes, 70 percent of the children entering kindergarten are not ready. “These children start off being behind and school is a real challenge for them from that point on,” Heumann says. “And, the school has to spend extra resources trying to get the kids up to where they should be. My feeling is every child should be given a chance. Our goal is that in five years, 70 percent of these children will be kindergarten ready.” He points out that there are great programs out there to prepare children for school but, if the parents don’t know about them, the children can’t benefit. Rather than reinvent the wheel, the coalition is identifying ways and partners to take programs such as Read on Arizona into the neighborhoods where the need is greatest. The proposed budget is $783.5 million, which is a decrease from

Budget amendments Amendments by the mayor and City Council included funding allocations for: • Seed money for the Chandler Education Coalition Early Literacy Campaign based on the receipt of matching funds and committee approval (Vice Mayor Rick Heumann). • Swim lesson scholarships for qualified participants from 3 to 17 years old will allow the aquatics program to provide approximately 200 free swim lessons to youth residing in Chandler households that qualify under the Maricopa County Very Low Income Limits. (Heumann). • The addition of two unlit, “game grade” athletic fields at Chuparosa Park to accommodate more soccer, football and lacrosse games and practices. (Councilmember Jeff Weninger). • Additional shade structures at Snedigar Sportsplex designed to match newer facilities in the Valley. Snedigar hosts 39 adult sports leagues and 21 annual tournaments annually. (Mayor Jay Tibshraeny). • The purchase of a new bus. Chandler and Valley Metro staffs are working for a solution to service Price Road and the Intel campus without the need for an additional bus. However, if it is not possible, Chandler would purchase a new bus for this service (Tibshraeny). • Restroom improvements at Snedigar Sportsplex to respond to a major source of complaints from facility users. (Tibshraeny).

$804 million in 2013-14. Operating costs increase 6.5 percent under the proposed budget, and the total capital budget decreases by 15.3 percent. The City’s general fund, which represents 38 percent or $294.8 million of Chandler’s total budget, increases by 10.9 percent. The proposed budget includes a property tax decrease of 9.22 cents/$100 of assessed value; reducing the primary rate from 32.92 cents/$100 to 29.92 cents/$100 and the secondary rate from 94.22 cents/$100 to 88 cents

per $100. The tentative budget is available for review online at budget and at the Downtown Chandler Library, 22 S. Delaware St. or City Clerk’s Office, 175 S. Arizona Ave. You can voice your opinion by emailing the mayor and council at Mayor&Council@chandleraz. gov or by calling (480)782-2200. Joan Westlake is a freelancer for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at

Chandler police officer arrested Chandler Police Officer Lonnie Morris was arrested by Chandler police on May 18 for suspicion of DUI after he arrived at an extra-duty job and was allegedly impaired. Morris, 53, was placed under arrest around 10:30 a.m. after a DUI investigation was conducted. Morris was then transported to a local hospital after medical personnel were called to evaluate him. Charges against Morris are pending lab results. Morris is on paid administrative leave pending an internal investigation.

Charm Thai Cuisine to hold ribbon cutting Charm Thai Cuisine, 11 N. Boston St., Suite 5, Chandler, will have a ribbon cutting event with refreshments from 4:30 p.m. to 5:30 p.m. Tuesday, June 10. The restaurant is offering a 20 percent discount off lunch with a current SanTan Sun News ad on page 77 for dine in only. The discount cannot be combined with other promotions. Charm Thai Cuisine also offers a happy hour from 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. daily.


June 7 – 20, 2014




June 7 – 20, 2014


there eating and shopping because it reminded me of home.” Moyers, who worked for the Kokomo Downtown Association before relocating to Arizona, says she is truly passionate about downtowns and what they have to offer residents and visitors. “It’s what I truly enjoy,” Moyers says. “Downtowns just offer a sense of community, and they can be a gathering point for people to go and be together. I think we are all looking for a place of belonging.” During her first month on the job, Moyers says she worked at acclimating to downtown Chandler, meeting with business and land owners to learn what their visions and goals are, and how the City can be a part of them. “I’ve also been meeting with members of the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership, and getting up to speed on the different development projects we have in the downtown area, which include multifamily units and additional mixed units,” Moyers says. “I feel like there’s a great balance of the redevelopment of the existing downtown as well as what’s to come. There is such a great blend of old and new.” Looking ahead, Moyers says that although downtown Chandler provides a really good depiction of the city’s history and offers a wide range of shopping and dining options, she is

Annual school supply drive seeks sponsors looking forward to helping it become even better. “I’m looking for the ‘best of’ local restaurants, the kind of unique places that foodies want to go to, as well as unique retail shops and more special events that can help bring more people to downtown,” Moyers says. “I feel like there is a great opportunity for growth.” Christine Mackay, economic development director for the City of Chandler, says that she is thrilled to have Moyers as a part of her team. “She brings a fresh perspective to the downtown market, and her enthusiasm and excitement are contagious to all of us.” Moyers is also excited about her new role with the city. “Downtown Chandler has always been a great place to be, and with continued improvements and focus the downtown area will really be something special.” Alison Stanton is a freelance writer who lives in the East Valley. She can be reached at

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The largest school supply drive in Chandler is back for another year and looking for sponsors and community partners. Last year, the drive provided more than 3,000 backpacks to disadvantaged youth. The supply drive is being put on by For Our City-Chandler in partnership with the City of Chandler and several nonprofit organizations, churches, employers, school districts and businesses. As part of the drive, volunteers have coordinated Operation Back to School Chandler which is an effort to get organizations planning their own school supply drives to team up. The goal is to provide a more collaborative outreach effort to reduce instances where some students receive multiple supplies while others receive none. “It is an amazing thing that happens when we tackle issues that are bigger and broader than any of us can solve by ourselves. We become relevant and do more than just feel good about ourselves and our efforts,” says Kevin Hartke, a Chandler city councilman and director of For Our City-Chandler. This year’s goal is to provide 5,000 children with backpacks, school supplies, shoes, socks, underwear and uniforms. They will be distributed to needy elementary, middle and high school students in July.

There are opportunities to be involved on many levels, including sponsorships, hosting a drive at work, making a financial contribution, donating supplies or volunteering. Organizations planning a school supply drive in Chandler or wanting to join Operation Back to School Chandler as a sponsor are encouraged to contact Niki Tapia at (480) 782-2214 or email Niki. Visit School_Drive.html for more information.

OPERATION BACK TO SCHOOL: The largest school supply drive in Chandler is back for another year with the goal of distributing 5,000 backpacks to needy children in the Valley. Submitted photo


CUSD offers summer nutrition program BY TRACY HOUSE

Chandler Unified School District is offering the USDA Summer Food Program so that area children won’t go hungry this summer. For some children, the only meals they receive are those provided at school, so this summer, children age 18 and younger can receive breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner at numerous facilities around Chandler at no cost Monday through Friday until July 18. Adults can purchase a meal for $2. Patty Narducci, supervisor—food and nutrition department with CUSD, says there is no cost or registration to participate. “Basically a family could be provided with four meals a day, breakfast, lunch, a snack and dinner, among those sites,” Narducci explains. “All children are welcome. There’s no qualifying criteria at all. Our goal is to serve as many children as possible.” The dates meals are offered vary by location, some operating through July. Narducci clarifies that the meals offered at the pools do not require pool admission. The meals are available outside the pool facilities. CUSD has been sponsoring this program for more than 20 years. “It’s been one of those services that is so critical for us to provide,” Narducci explains. Nationally 25 percent of families cannot afford to feed their

family on a regular basis. “We’re doing whatever we can to ensure that the youth in Chandler, and the families in Chandler, have an opportunity to obtain meals.” Meals are similar to those served in the schools, during the school year. There is a hot and cold item available daily. Narducci expects to be able to serve 75,000 meals over the course of the seven weeks of the program. In addition, the program employs 60 people during the summer. “I think we do have a lot of options. Hopefully we’ll be able to best serve any child that will come for a meal.” For more information, call (480) 812-7240. The following facilities are offering B = Breakfast; L = Lunch; PM = Snack; D = Dinner: • Bologna Elementary, 1625 E. Frye Rd.: B 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.; L 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. through Friday, June 27. • Boys and Girls Club, 300 E. Chandler Blvd.: L 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; PM 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. through Friday, July 18. • Chandler High School, 350 N. Arizona Ave.; L 2 p.m. to 1 p.m. through Friday, June 27. • Frye Elementary, 801 E. Frye Rd.: B 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.; L 11:30 a.m. to

12:30 p.m. through Friday, June 27. • Galveston Elementary, 661 E. Galveston: B 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.; L 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. through Friday, June 27. • Hartford Elementary, 700 N. Hartford: B 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 a.m.; L 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. through Friday, June 27. • ICAN, 600 N. Morales: L 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; PM 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. through Friday, July 11. • Salvation Army, 85 E. Saragosa: B 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.; L 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. through Friday, July 11. • San Marcos Elementary, 451 W. Frye Rd.: L 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. through Friday, June 27. • YMCA, 1655 W. Frye Rd.: L 11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.; PM 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. through Friday, July 11. Pool Meal Service, Monday through Friday, through July 11: • Arrowhead Pool, 1475 W. Erie St.: B 8 a.m. to 9 a.m.; L 12:30 p.m. to 2 p.m. • Desert Oasis Aquatic Center, 1400 W. Summit Pl.: L 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.; PM 2 p.m. to 3 p.m. • Folley Pool, 600 E. Fairview: PM 2 p.m. to 3 p.m.; D 5 p.m. to 7 p.m. Tracy House is the news editor for the SanTan Sun News. She can be reached at

June 7 – 20, 2014


Child abuse prevention speakers available The Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Coalition helps educate neighbors, friends, family and citizens about child abuse. Chandler residents can schedule child abuse prevention speakers free of charge through the coaliation. Membership in the coalition is open to any area resident who has a dedication and commitment to the prevention of child abuse. The key focus of The Child Abuse Prevention and Awareness Coalition is to empower communities to prevent child abuse through reporting. Membership meetings are held quarterly, with the next meeting being held at 12 p.m. Wednesday, June 11, in the third-floor meeting room at 63 E. Main St., Mesa. To schedule a speaker, free of charge, call or email Sgt. Joe Favazzo at (480) 782-4108 or joseph.favazzo@


June 7 – 20, 2014



ICAN’s Color Dash a success ICAN’s Color Dash attracted more than 1,000 walkers and runners to Tumbleweed Park in Chandler on May 17, raising about $15,000 for the organization. “The ICAN 5K Color Dash was a tremendous success,” says Becky Jackson, president and CEO of ICAN. “Everyone had a great time running through the rainbow of color. We thank our presenting sponsor, DPR Construction and the Color Dash team for helping make this event so great.” Sponsors of the Color Dash included DPR Construction, AlphaGraphics, Chandler Firefighter Charities, Burch and Cracchiolo, the Chandler Compadres and Chandler

HAVING FUN: ICAN CEO Becky Jackson celebrates with youth volunteer Daija Harris. Submitted photo

Police Department along with supporters Coach and Willie’s and Back in Line Spine and Wellness. ICAN is a free, family-centered youth service in the East Valley. It provides a full complement of programs proven effective in equipping youth to achieve personal and academic success by tackling substance abuse, gang involvement and juvenile delinquency. Specifically, eight out of 10 young people in the areas they serve are living in extreme poverty. Four of those children will go to bed hungry at night and eight will be using drugs or alcohol to cope with the harsh realities they face. Joining gangs becomes a more viable choice than graduation in the community. ICAN exists to combat these issues and build a strong future for the community. ICAN is accredited by the National Council on Accreditation and was recently named “Outstanding After School Program” by the Arizona Center for After School Excellence. For more information about ICAN, call (480) 821-4207 or visit

June 7 – 20, 2014

Weninger files signatures for house run Chandler City Councilman Jeff Weninger filed the necessary signatures on Friday, May 23, with the Secretary of State to run for the Arizona House of Representatives in Legislative District 17. Weninger is serving his second term on the Chandler City Council, for which he previously served as vice mayor. He is a Republican Precinct Committeeman in District 17. In addition to his public service, Weninger is a successful small businessman. He has been the co-owner of five successful Valley restaurants for the past 18 years. Jeff Weninger. Weninger made the decision to run for the Submitted photo state legislature after numerous requests from Republican leaders throughout the state. He is supported by Reps. J.D. Mesnard and Tom Forese, and Sen. Steve Yarbrough, all of whom represent the district. “Jeff has long demonstrated his commitment to our community in his professional endeavors and through his service on the Chandler Council,” Mesnard says. “He has the right principles and I’m excited about the chance to serve with him in the House.” Yarbrough emphasized that Weninger has been a strong conservative voice representing the values of East Valley residents as a family man and a businessman. “He will be a great addition to the state House of Representatives,” Yarbrough says. “I am honored to have the support of so many respected Republican leaders, particularly those who have been faithfully serving this district,” Weninger states. “I am looking forward to hearing from the citizens in District 17 as my family and I explore this important decision on running for the State House.” Weninger is a lifelong Republican and has lived in the Valley for 20 years. He and his wife, Janet, have been married for 15 years. They have three children and reside in Chandler.

SUCCESS: More than 1,000 walkers and runners enjoy the Color Explosion finale at the Color Dash. Submitted photo

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June 7 – 20, 2014


My Sister’s Attic Chandler expands BY LYNETTE CARRINGTON

The three sisters who own My Sister’s Attic celebrated the expansion of their Chandler store with a grand re-opening on May 31, complete with swag bags of goodies from nearby merchants. The store is now 9,300 square feet, up 3,000 from more than 6,000. “The landlord offered a deal we couldn’t refuse and we have at this moment about 10 storage units full of furniture,” explains Ann Siner who cofounded the business with sister, Jennifer Siner, and where sister, Tess Loo, serves as chief fashion stylist. “We are bursting at the seams with furniture that needs to be sold and this has been our situation for months. Even with four Attic locations, we still have so much beautiful furniture and furnishings coming in, we really just needed more space.” My Sister’s Attic is located at Fulton Promenade, 4955 S. Alma School Rd. (south of Chandler Heights Road) with an additional location in Phoenix, two in Scottsdale and two in California. Call (480) 722-1823 or visit www. for additional information. Siner explains her customers throughout the Valley are excited about the expansion. “I think customers are going to be heading down to Chandler from the far reaches of the Valley,” Siner notes about the projected success of the recent

MORE CONSIGNMENT TO LOVE: The expansion of My Sister’s Attic in Chandler brings the store to 9,300 square feet. Submitted photo

expansion. My Sister’s Attic is stocked with “gently loved” furniture, home décor, lighting, floral arrangements, rugs, china, dishes, children’s furniture and art that most often could pass for new. “Our furniture items are from the Valley,” says Siner. “One of the reasons we’ve been around 23 years is that we do a really good job selling people’s items. After the items are sold, they can come in and get paid whenever they want. They don’t have to wait six months. We try to be customer driven and convenient.” The store accepts consignments from around the greater Phoenix area. “We do have a fleet of moving trucks and professional movers so we can come to their house and pick up furniture,” says Siner. “Once items sell, we pay either 55 percent of the selling price as in-store credit that can be used at any one of our

UPCYCLE, RECYCLE: My Sister’s Attic in Chandler accepts consignments from around the greater Phoenix area. Submitted photo

14 stores or we pay 45 percent in cash. You can stop into any one of our 14 stores and collect your cash literally 20 minutes after your item is sold.” The sisters also own the women’s clothing store My Sister’s Closet and Well Suited for men, each of which has multiple locations. The trio of sisters recently started a 501(c)(3) foundation called My Sister’s Charities. There will be a thrift store connected to the charity that will open in the summer in Fulton Promenade, too.

The store will take unsold furnishings, accessories and clothing items from all of the My Sister’s Attic, My Sister’s Closet and Well Suited stores and sell them at bargain basement prices. “Proceeds from that will go to our favorite groups that will benefit homeless pets, women and the environment,” Siner finishes. Lynette Carrington is a freelancer for the SanTan Sun News. She can be contacted at

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‘Rock the Block’ returns to downtown Chandler The fifth annual Achen-Gardner Construction “Rock the Block!” returns to downtown Chandler with a variety of festivities and entertainment on Saturday, Nov. 8. The event will run from 12 p.m. to 10 p.m. on Arizona Avenue between Chandler Boulevard and Frye Road. Rock the Block! is an annual free family friendly block party that celebrates the fun, dynamic lifestyle that Chandler offers while promoting Chandler-based businesses. The event garnered more than 18,000 attendees in 2013 and is expecting to attract even more this year. The annual block party, which is organized by the Downtown Chandler Community Partnership and Steve LeVine Entertainment and Public Relations, will feature: • Live entertainment on multiple stages • A Kids Zone including interactive games and rides, face painting, inflatables and a zip line • More than 150 retail, arts and crafts vendors • Top food trucks in Arizona • Beer and wine garden The community stage will feature “Chandler’s Got Talent,” an annual variety act talent show. Online submissions will be accepted via YouTube or Vimeo and the top acts will be chosen to compete

ROCK THE BLOCK!: The annual event features a Kids Zone, more than 150 retail, arts and crafts vendors, and a beer and wine garden. Submitted photo

on the day of the event. For more information on how to submit, email Individuals interested in being volunteers or who have inquiries about military or promotional trailer space can contact For information regarding vendor applications and sponsorship opportunities visit www. For more information about Rock the Block! visit or contact Jennifer Lindley at Jennifer@

June 7 – 20, 2014


Yarbrough set for re-election Sen. Steve Yarbrough, a 12year legislative veteran, chairman of the Senate Finance Committee and former chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee, has filed his petitions for RUNNING FOR re-election SENATE: Sen. Steve to the Senate Yarbrough has filed for District 17 his petitions for rewhich includes election to the Senate East and South for District 17 which includes East and South Chandler, Chandler, Northwest Northwest Gilbert and Sun Lakes. Gilbert and Sun Submitted photo Lakes. Yarbrough has an unparalleled record of perfect attendance and faithfully casting roll call votes. Part of a family committed to public service, he is executive director of a large scholarship awarding charitable organization and served 24 years on the school board of Chandler Valley Christian High School. His wife of 46 years, Linda, is a music teacher and serves on the board of the Chandler Cultural Foundation. Two of their sons are East Valley police officers—a Chandler lieutenant and a Gilbert officer.

Yarbrough has sponsored much of Arizona’s economic development legislation enacted in recent years including the sales factor bill regarding calculating corporate income tax and infrastructure cooperation legislation both important to Intel’s expansion in Chandler. He also authored legislation reducing business personal property taxes and reform of TPT (sales tax) collection to the great benefit of small businesses. This past session his bill eliminated sales tax on electricity and natural gas used by manufacturers large and small. A strong proponent of school choice and improved student academic achievement, Yarbrough is a graduate of Phoenix Union High School and earned finance and law degrees from ASU. He is a former ASU student affairs administrator and legal counsel and Mesa Community College business law instructor. He practiced law for many years in Chandler in partnership with former mayor, Boyd Dunn. For more information visit www.



June 7 – 20, 2014

Allred Park Place rezoning OK’d The Chandler City Council met at 7 p.m. on Thursday, May 22, and took action on 33 agenda items, including: • Approved the final adoption of an ordinance at Allred Park Place rezoning approximately 73 acres located at the northeast and southwest corners of Price and Willis roads for a business park, hotel, conference center and service retail uses, including a MidRise Overlay for buildings up to 150 feet high. • Authorized the submittal of a $681,495 pass-through Indian Gaming Grant application from The Payne Foundation Inc., dba Driver’s Edge, to the Gila River Indian Community. • Authorized the submittal of a $377,000 pass-through Indian Gaming Grant application from Seton Catholic Preparatory High School, to the Gila River Indian Community. • Authorized the submittal of a $1,047,031 pass-through Indian Gaming Grant application from Dignity Health Foundation, East Valley, to the Gila River Indian Community. • Approved the submittal of a ballot argument in support of Proposition 470, the Local Alternative Expenditure Limitation known as Home Rule, for inclusion in the publicity pamphlet for the Aug. 26,

Chuck Wagon Cook-off offers vendor opportunities

election. • Council also held a public hearing on and voted to authorize the 2014-15 Annual Assessment for the Downtown Chandler Enhanced Municipal Services District. At the conclusion of the meeting, Mayor Jay Tibshraeny mentioned that FedEx recently held a groundbreaking for a new 300,000-square-foot building creating new jobs for Chandler. He also congratulated Chandler for being named a Playful City for the eighth consecutive year and thanked council for its efforts in supporting recreational amenities for the City. Vice Mayor Rick Heumann noted that Cox rolled out its highspeed Gigabit service to residents, improving Internet speed in the region. Councilman Kevin Hartke invited residents to attend the Council Candidate Forum sponsored by the Chandler Chamber of Commerce on June 5 in the City Council Chambers. The meeting was adjourned at 7:30 p.m. The next City Council meeting will be a study session at 7 p.m. Monday, June 9. Council meetings are aired live, as well as replayed, on Chandler Channel 11 and streamed on the Web at During a study session on Monday, May 23, mayor and council recognized

several City employees for their service, including Robin Becker on her retirement from the Municipal Utilities Division after nearly 18 years of service, Neighborhood Programs Coordinator Judy Ramos for 10 years of service, and Sgt. Randle Meeker for 20 years of service in the police department. Tibshraeny recognized the graduates of the City’s Traditional and HOA Academies for their commitment to Chandler neighborhoods. The mayor, joined by Councilwoman Nora Ellen, proclaimed May 1824, 2014, as National Public Works Week recognizing the work the City does ensuring smooth operations of services to its residents. He also proclaimed May 18-24, 2014, National Emergency Services Week in Chandler, for the lifesaving work of the Fire Department.

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Opportunities are available for select vendors who want to participate in the City’s fifth annual Chandler Chuck Wagon Cook-off, which will be held at Tumbleweed Ranch Nov. 7 to Nov. 9. This family friendly culinary event features competitors working from authentic chuck wagons as they cook in the style of 1880s cattle drives. The cook-off is produced by the Chandler Museum and its support organization, Pardners of Tumbleweed Ranch. Food and merchandise vendors and nonprofit organizations are invited to participate on Saturday, Nov. 8, and Sunday, Nov. 9. Some activities will take place Friday, Nov. 7, which is an optional vendor participation day. Preference will be given to vendors who specialize in cooking, local foods and Western or historic food items. Sponsorships are also available for the event. Vendor applications and sponsorship details are available online at chuckwagon or by calling (480) 7822751. The deadline to submit a vendor application is 5 p.m. Friday, Sept. 19. The Chandler Chuck Wagon Cook- |


Community off has been hailed as one of the best chuck wagon cook-offs by American Cowboy Magazine. The costumes, equipment, music, tastes and smells at this event transport guests back in time to show a rare, up-close look at the Old West lifestyle. Using historic cooking methods, the authentic 1880s chuck wagons from around the west prepare five-course meals, and share the history of food and life on cattle drives. Judges decide winners in meal course categories as well as best authentic wagon and best overall meal. A limited number of chuck wagon lunches are available for purchase on Saturday, and breakfast on Sunday. Vendors provide additional food and beverage options. The event will feature stage entertainment, historical demonstrations, campfire glows with marshmallow roasts and shopping opportunities. KFYI radio personality and Arizona’s foremost foodie, Jan D’Atri, will stop in for cooking demonstrations, and young cooks can register to pair up on Sunday with a wagon team for the second annual Junior Chuck Wagon Cook-off. The Chandler Chuck Wagon Cookoff at Tumbleweed Ranch is held within Tumbleweed Park, which is on the southwest corner of McQueen and Germann roads. The 2014 Cookoff is presented by the Pardners of Tumbleweed Ranch, Chandler Museum, Biscuit Flats Chuck Wagon and other sponsors.

June 7 – 20, 2014

Patience a virtue as summer roadwork begins June will bring construction activity to several major streets in Chandler. Access to homes, neighborhoods and businesses will be maintained during the work, but officials are asking motorists for patience and to remain alert to traffic control changes.

at which point traffic will be shifted back to its normal alignment. Left turn lanes will be maintained for both eastbound and westbound traffic at Gilbert Road. The work is expected to take 30 days to complete.

Chandler Boulevard

Chandler Heights Road

Lane restrictions began June 2 on Chandler Boulevard between McQueen and Cooper roads to accommodate a water main tie-over project. The fivemonth project involves the abandonment of an old water main and the installation of new service connections to an existing, newer water main. Two westbound lanes of Chandler Boulevard will be maintained throughout the construction, but eastbound traffic on Chandler Boulevard will be restricted at times to a single lane, except during rush hour when at least two lanes will remain open. Minimal restrictions will occur on McQueen and Cooper roads at Chandler Boulevard.

Paving work associated with the widening of Gilbert Road in southeast Chandler will require the closure of Chandler Heights Road between Four Peaks Way and Gilbert Road from approximately 4 a.m. until 8 p.m. on Thursday, June 12. Eastbound traffic on Chandler Heights Road will be detoured north and south at Gilbert Road. Westbound traffic on Chandler Heights Road will be detoured at Lindsay Road to either Riggs Road or Ocotillo Road.

Queen Creek Road Roadwork associated with a commercial development (FedEx) on the northwest corner of Queen Creek and Gilbert roads have resulted in lane shifts through the intersection. Westbound traffic on Queen Creek Road will be shifted to the south side of the existing center median on the west side of the intersection until it passes Emmett Drive,

Traffic on Gilbert Road will be shifted to the west side of the median during the paving. Left turns onto Chandler Heights Road from southbound Gilbert Road will be prohibited, as will right turns for those travelling northbound on Gilbert Road. For more information, call (480) 7822225.

DEADLINES FOR SANTAN SUN NEWS The deadline for news and advertising is 5 p.m. Wednesday, June 11, for the Saturday, June 21, issue of the SanTan Sun News. All news must be submitted to news@santansun. com by that day to be considered for the next issue or by filling in the “submit a news release” form on the newspaper’s website at To send an item for consideration in the SanTan Family Fun, email it directly to Send advertising files and information to account reps or contact For deadline information, visit and click on “About us” and call (480) 7320250 for advertising rate details.



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