SanTan Sun News - September 2, 2017

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September 2–15, 2017

Seton ‘house system’ building student bonds, leaders


Harry Potter made them famous and British schools have extolled their virtues for years. Now, Seton Catholic Preparatory in Chandler has debuted a “house system,” a student-led program that divides every grade level into groups that meet every week for bonding, community service, mentoring and competition. Every student is assigned to one of Seton’s 15 houses, each named after patron saints. Each house has 30 to 40 students in grades nine through 12, while staff and faculty members serve as advisors. Students stay with the same house their whole time at Seton, and juniors and seniors are expected to guide and set positive examples for younger students. The goal is to help students feel connected as the private Catholic high school on North Dobson Road grows. About 580 students are enrolled and that number is expected to increase to 800 in three or four years. “We’ve been working on this system for several years now,” said assistant principal

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

As part of Seton Catholic Preparatory’s new “house system,” juniors Nick Wade (back to camera), and, from left, Luke Bell and Mike Kenney and sophomore Billy Bennett engage in a bonding exercise by trying to build the tallest tower they can using objects in their backpacks.

David Sorkin. “About three years ago, we in administration said, ‘How do we keep that community feeling that Seton is known for when we’re a school of 800 students?’ The solution we came up with is the House system.

“It’s 100 percent a student-led system,” Sorkin added. “It is based on the British model of houses. The easiest way to wrap your brain around it is Harry Potter without all the wizardry and magic.” Seton students wrote the guidebook

and the mission statement for the system, which is to provide a “student-led community fostering faith and solidarity.” Schools around the United States are moving toward or implementing house systems, Sorkin said. He said he saw the “transformation” and “positive cultural benefits” of that system when he was dean of students at Providence Academy, a pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade Catholic school in Plymouth, Minnesota. The house system started in England as a way to organize boarding school students into buildings, according to the National Catholic Educational Association’s “NCEA Talk” blog. The systems first came to the United States in the 1930s when Harvard and Yale used them to divide students into dormitory groups. The house method today refers to organizing students into groups, rather than in buildings. Students at Seton typically meet in their houses once a week for 55 minutes, not including their time spent doing community service and special projects. They engage in many activities togethsee

SETON page 6

Chandler Unified spending nearly More millennials gravitating $900,000 for school parking lot to home buying in Chandler BY COLLEEN SPARKS Staff

Chandler Unified School District is spending nearly $1 million to buy land for another parking lot at Casteel High School to accommodate students and visitors as the campus grows. The district governing board late last month unanimously approved spending $900,000 to buy about 10 acres at the northwest corner of Ivy Lane and Mandarin Drive in Queen Creek. “We’re very, very excited about that,” Casteel Principal Sandy Lundberg said. “We have a need for parking because as we’ve grown quicker than we’ve expected, we need to have more parking for our upperclassmen. It will help for our events. We’ve got a great community that loves to come to our events.” The high school on South Power Road in Queen Creek has 569 parking spaces now and without the additional parking

area, the campus would not have enough spots to accommodate its upperclassmen next academic year, Lundberg said. Casteel has students in grades seven through 11 this year and will add seniors next year. The new parking spots will be mostly for juniors and seniors but available for the public to use for football games, open houses and other extracurricular events, Lundberg said. It’s unknown exactly how many spots will be built but, she said, it would be at least 300. The parking lot will be on the north side of the football field near the softball facilities. Casteel expects to have 320 seniors and 430 juniors next school year, Lundberg added. The money will come out as a result of the 2015 bond election and the district expects to close on the sale Sept. 29. Frank Fletcher, associate superinten-



LAND page 9


Millennials as a whole may have put off home buying longer than generations that came before them, but market trends show that the largest generation in history is beginning to warm to the idea of home ownership. Older millennials – people ages 27 to 36 – made up 28 percent of home buyers in the country in 2016. That ties them with Gen Xers for the largest representative share of total home buyers last year, according to the National Association of REALTORS Home Buyer and Seller Generational Trends Report 2017. Add in younger millennials, which made up 6 percent of buyers, and the demographic group as a whole represented the largest demographic of home buyers in 2016, according to the report. Chandler and Gilbert are uniquely

poised to take advantage of this market shift, Realtor Mindy Jones Nevarez said. Nevarez is one of the agents behind, a website that provides comparison information for people considering a move to either of the two East Valley cities. The website is a collaborative project from Nevarez’s Amy Jones Real Estate Group and Merrill Jencks’ Big Helper Real Estate Group and is geared toward younger home buyers in particular as they are more apt to look online for information. East Valley millennials, who have gravitated toward rentals in recent years and helped spur an apartment boom throughout the Valley, are now interested in home buying due in large part to rising rents. “Cost for rent has gone up significantly, especially in (the) Southeast Valley,” Nevarez said. “(Millennials have) really gravitatsee


F E AT U R E STO R I E S Legislature may decide Confederate statues’ fate . . . . . . . . . . . . Big-box stores growing in EV for more than retail . . . . . . . . . . AIA addressing heat, heart and head for HS athletes . . . . . . . Students excel in classical language competition . . . . . . . . . . Rawhide cuts back public hours, turns to special events . . . .

Page 03 business . . . . . . . . . Page 21 sports . . . . . . . . . . . Page 32 neighbors . . . . . . . Page 46 arts . . . . . . . . . . . Page 58 community . . . . . .

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Mesnard: Legislature may decide Confederate statues’ fate BY HOWARD FISCHER Capitol Media Services

Gov. Doug Ducey’s assertions that he has no role in deciding the future of four Confederate monuments on state land appear not to be backed up by statute, according to a key state lawmaker from Chandler. House Speaker J.D. Mesnard said any decisions about removing monuments and memorials likely have to come in the form of legislation that has to be signed by the governor to take effect. And Mesnard said it’s appropriate to have a “thoughtful’’ conversation about each of the monuments on state property when the Legislature reconvenes in January. By contrast, Ducey recently declared he does not favor removal of any of the monuments. “I don’t think we should try to hide our history,’’ the governor said, including one within view of his office window at the Capitol that was not even erected by the United Daughters of the Confederacy until 1961, a century after the Civil War and nearly 50 years after Arizona became a state. Governors in several other states already had moved to take down some of these statutes even before the violence at the white supremacist demonstration in Virginia. Ducey, however, is seeking to distance himself from the debate, saying if people have concerns they should approach the Legislative Governmental Mall

Commission, which has purview over the park across from the state Capitol where one of the monuments is located. But Kevin DeMenna, who chairs that panel, said neither he nor his commission has any authority to actually require that a monument be removed. The decision, he said, ultimately has to come from the Legislature and the governor would have to sign any measure. That’s also the way it appears to Mesnard. “The mall commission’s more of a manager,’’ he said. Senate President Steve Yarbrough agreed. “The only way a memorial gets put on the mall or gets removed from the mall is with a bill,’’ he said. Yarbrough said if someone introduces legislation in January to get rid of any or all of the monuments he will assign it to one or more committees for a hearing. And if it passes the Senate and House, that puts the question squarely in the governor’s lap. Ducey, however, wants no part of the controversy. Gubernatorial press aide Daniel Scarpinato cited a law that says the commission can ask to “relocate’’ any monument or memorial. And he contends that includes the ability to relocate it right off state property. Even assuming Ducey is correct about who controls the memorial on the mall, that still leaves three others dedicated to remembering the Confederacy that are on state property. But unlike the Capitol mall, they are under the purview of state

Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Services

This memorial to the Confederacy at the state Capitol is one of several in Arizona.

agencies whose directors all serve at the pleasure of the governor. But Scarpinato deflected questions about how his boss thinks the public could weigh in about having those monuments removed – other than petitioning Ducey himself, the situation the governor is trying to avoid.

“I have no answer for you on that,’’ he said. Mesnard said any legislative decisions should be made on a case-by-case basis, as there are some clear differences not only between the monuments but the text on each. see

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Cell phone leads Chandler police to double-killing suspect BY JIM WALSH Staff

Information found in a cell phone helped Chandler police identify and track down a suspect who eventually was arrested and accused of shooting two victims to death and critically wounding a third, according to court documents. Taron Lavelle Watkins, 23, of Glendale, was arrested by police on suspicion of two counts of second-degree murder and one count of attempted seconddegree murder in an Aug. 26 shooting in the parking lot of a Chandler apartment complex. All three victims were inside a red Toyota Corolla when they were shot, Detective Seth Tyler, a police spokesman, said. Chandler police arriving on the scene found a 20-year-old man dead in the parking lot. The car sped away but was stopped by

Mesa police at Alma School and Baseline roads after the driver called 911 to report he had been wounded in the shootings. While the driver is expected to survive his wounds, a 16-year-old girl was found dead in the backseat after suffering multiple gunshot wounds. Police also found the cell phone inside the car. Watkins, known as “Wiz,’’ had a history of drug arrests and was wanted on a warrant for marijuana possession. The group had planned to smoke marijuana inside the car before shots rang out, according to a court document. The group watched the Floyd Mayweather versus Conor McGregor boxing match earlier in the evening. Police found a boarding pass for an airline flight inside the cell phone that identified Watkins, according to the court document. Police also recovered nine shell casings fired from a .45-caliber handgun.

The federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms examined the shell casings and determined that they were all fired from the same gun, according to a court record. Chandler police put Watkins under surveillance and spotted him leaving a hotel in Scottsdale on Sunday afternoon, according to the document. Officers seized the Chevrolet Impala in which Watkins had been riding and found an empty .45-caliber magazine. Court records show that Watkins was one of four suspects found by Phoenix police inside a house during a home invasion robbery in 2012, but there was no record of him being prosecuted. Police say home invasions are often drug-related, with suspects looking for drugs or cash used in the drug trade. Police did not release the identities of the victims, pending notification of their families.

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Taron Watkins is accused of killing two people.

Institute takes credit for forcing Chandler sign law changes SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

The conservative Goldwater Institute is taking credit for forcing Chandler city officials to change its sign ordinance so that small businesses “will no longer face unconstitutional restrictions on the way they communicate with their customers.” The institute represented three local businesses that challenged the ordinance and said it is now dropping the lawsuit because of the city’s revisions. “Chandler had a sign code that imposed

different rules for signs based on what they said and who was saying it in direct contradiction to the Supreme Court’s ruling in Reed v. Town of Gilbert,” the institute said. The code divided signs into 11 different categories based on the messages they conveyed, and it imposed different size and location requirements on the different categories. The Goldwater Institute said it filed the suit “to vindicate two of the most venerated rights protected by the constitutions of Arizona and the United States: the rights to

free speech and to equal protection under the law.” The revisions to the sign code address most of the plaintiffs’ concerns and will enable them to exercise their right to speak freely, meaningfully and responsibly, the institute said. Adi Dynar, the Institute’s lead attorney in the case, said, “Numerous cities in Arizona and across the country continue to violate the Reed decision with outdated sign codes that discriminate based on the message the business is communicating.”

“This result would not have been possible without people like Mr. Michael Pollack and Mr. Robert Schure, who stood up to protect the Constitution and worked tirelessly to ensure that the city of Chandler does not violate people’s right to speak freely,” Dynar continued. “We are glad that Chandler has amended its sign code, but should the city go back on its promises to follow the First Amendment, the Goldwater Institute will be back in court to defend the free speech rights of small businesses.”


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SETON from page 1 er, including community service work, celebrating Mass and taking part in academic and athletic competitions, Sorkin said. Each house will take a turn planning and hosting an all-school Mass, and occasionally students will attend the service with just their fellow house members. Besides participating in athletic competitions that may include wiffleball, students will also conduct academic contests, including a “Jeopardy!”-style event. Halloween pumpkin painting and Christmas decorating contests are also being planned. All students must each complete community service projects in order to graduate from Seton, and they will have to do five hours a year of community service efforts as a house. “They develop a familial, collegial feel,” Sorkin said. “It’s about fostering faith and solidarity. Solidarity we take from the Catholic social teachings, finding yourself in the other, that we’re all one. “The world is in a place where students need to experience and are longing for that sense of connection. Students and society is more disconnected than they ever have been.” Each house has a male and female leader who are seniors, and a male and female leader who are juniors. The leaders have the authority to handle disciplinary issues with younger students in their house, Sorkin said. The new system replaces the school’s student council and gives more students the opportunity to become leaders.

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“We’re significantly expanding the opportunities for students to engage in leadership,” Sorkin said. “All of the seniors in the house are mentors to the underclassmen. Everybody in the house has an obligation and responsibility towards leadership.” Seton senior Mary Rose Fugger, the Speaker of the House and member of the House of St. Katherine Drexel, is optimistic about the new system. “I think that the house system is going to enhance the student experience at Seton because it is going to promote more student interaction with each other,” she said, adding, “A freshman won’t be afraid to ask a senior or junior for help. We are really embracing, ‘Whatever hurts my brother hurts me,’ meaning that every student will have each other’s back, no matter what. There won’t be a gap in between grades. We will all be a family.” Most Seton students live in Chandler, but others live in Mesa, Tempe, Scottsdale, Phoenix and Casa Grande. “Every house system has to be molded to the community that it’s embedded in,” Sorkin said. “It was designed by our students to fit our community, our school, its charisms, our school’s desires.” Though it’s still early, enthusiasm for the system is high, he said. “Students are excited about it,” he said. “So far it’s going really well. The student leaders are excited. They came in for a leadership retreat over the summer to go over the playbook, establish routines, activities. “At the end of the day humans are social beings and so how do we help teach students to be engaged students within their community? It starts with our school.”

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Casteel High School will add a senior class next year, increasing the need for more parking spaces.

LAND from page 1

dent of support services, said the seller originally had asked for $1.076 million but an appraisal obtained by the district estimated the land was worth $775,000. Fletcher told the governing board at its Aug. 23 meeting that the $900,000, which is about $2 per square foot, “is a fair and reasonable price for this location.” Lundberg said the district has been “proactive to try to avoid problems” in the future that could be caused by insufficient parking. “People might not think that parking is a big deal, but it really is so you can have people feel welcome. You have spaces for them,” she said. Governing board members had few comments and questions about buying the land. The purchase was approved in a 4-0 vote with board member Karen McGee, outside the office, voting “yes” on the phone. Board member Barb Mozdzen was absent. McGee asked when the parking spaces would need to be added. Superintendent Camille Casteel said she expected the “latest we would need it” would be by 2018 because the school will have a senior class next school year.

Casteel added that a timeline would soon be developed for construction of the parking area. Governing board vice president Annette Auxier asked what responsibilities the district would have for the land. Fletcher said mainly the district would be responsible for doing dust and weed control on the site. Casteel High School, which has about 2,390 students this academic year, opened in 2015. Lundberg said the K-12 model is a great way of eliminating the transition from junior high to high school. Meanwhile, the same bond issue that is funding the parking lot also will cover a $6.8 million addition to Hamilton High School that will include 20 classrooms, a 9,585-square-foot weight room and locker room. The work will be done by Chasse Building Team. The 20 classrooms will be contained in a 27,530-square-foot, two-story addition. The cost works out to $183.44 per square foot, according to district documents. Construction is expected to begin within a few weeks and completed by next June.

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Ahwatukee, Chandler chambers endorse school overrides BY PAUL MARYNIAK Executive Editor

Two local chambers of commerce are urging Chandler voters to approve school funding measures that three school districts are putting up for election this fall. The Chandler Chamber of Commerce is urging approval of all the measures that have been put on the Nov. 7 ballot by the Tempe Union High School, Chandler Unified and Kyrene districts. The Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce board has urged voter approval this fall of Kyrene School District’s operating and capital budget overrides and a bond authorization. Its board is taking up the Tempe Union override measure at a meeting this month. Chandler Unified is asking for a continuation of a 15 percent override for its maintenance and operations measure, meaning there would be no tax increase and only continue a previously voterapproved override for seven more years. Tempe Union wants to increase a previously voter-approved 10 percent maintenance and operations budget override to 15 percent, with the additional 5 percent gradually phased in

over the next few years exclusively for pay increases for teachers and other staff. Kyrene has two override measures and a request for bond authorization that would allow the district to borrow almost $117 million over the next few years, primarily to update school buildings, many of which are nearly 30 years old. Voters will be casting ballots in all-mail elections beginning Oct. 11. Registration to vote in that election ends Oct. 9. Yes for Chandler Students, the political action committee urging voters to approve Chandler Unified’s override, noted that a citizens budget committee that studied the district’s financial picture earlier this year recommended continuation of the override. It said the funds will be used for “manageable class sizes,” “attracting and retaining great teachers” and “maintaining effective programs.” Noting state audits found that Chandler Unified spends the most money in the classrtoom among comparably sized districts, the committee said: “Students and staff are routinely recognized at the state and national levels for their excellence in academics, fine arts and athletics. The graduating

STATUES from page 3 For example, Mesnard said he is uncomfortable with the verbiage on a monument at a cemetery run by the Arizona Department of Veterans Services in Sierra Vista – placed there in 2010 – saying it is a memorial to “Arizona Confederate veterans who sacrificed all in the struggle for independence and the constitutional right of self-government.’’ “If you read the Articles of Secession, they sound very similar to the Declaration of Independence except for one monumental difference,’’ he said. “And that is the right to own slaves.’’ Mesnard said he is a supporter of states’ rights. But he called it “horrifying’’ that “the South hung their state sovereignty hats on slavery.’’ “That’s not what I mean by state sovereignty,’’ he said. He has not taken a position on a separate monument along a stretch of US 60 near Apache Junction on the right of way owned by the Arizona Department of Transportation.

Howard Fischer/Capitol Media Service

Speaker of the House J.D. Mesnard.

Originally placed along a different state road in 1943 by the Daughters of the Confederacy, it marks the Jefferson Davis Highway, which was supposed to become a coast-to-coast road honoring the president of the Confederate States of America. Earlier this week, it was vandalized with tar and feathers. Then there’s Picacho Peak State Park,

classes of 2017 earned a combined $118 million in college scholarship offers, 30,096 hours of college credit and 112,993 hours of community service.” The Keep Kyrene Strong PAC has noted that its maintenance and operations override totals $12.8 million a year and funds about 200 teacher positions. “Without continuation of the M&O override, the continued implementation of the employee/teacher compensation plan will be interrupted,” it said. It said the loss of that money “will result in increased class size” and pose a risk to the continuation of special elementary enrichment classes such as music, art and physical education. “Course offerings in coding, foreign language, culinary and performing arts, music, PE, art and STEM – which was recently restored – will also be at risk,” the Kyrene PAC’s fact sheet states, adding: “Loss of M&O override will also jeopardize the instructional supports for students (reading and math interventions) and school based support services (library, speech and hearing, etc…).” Kyrene’s $6.8 million capital budget override “will risk elimination of Kyrene technology program” and adversely

impact school safety and parent services, the panel said. Failure to approve the measure also would cause a “loss of funds to maintain school buses and maintenance vehicles.” Voters last authorized a Kyrene bond measure seven years ago. “Loss of bond authorization will severely impact the district’s ability to move forward with much-needed repairs and maintenance of school facilities,” the committee fact sheet states. It also said failure to approve the bond measure would adversely impact Kyrene’s expansion of early-learning and preschool centers as well as the ability to buy books and other education materials. The Kyrene Governing Board already has adopted a statement urging voter approval of all three measures. “This governing board has made teacher compensation a priority and we have worked hard to adopt a longterm strategy for increasing teacher salaries,” it says. “Continuation of our (maintenance and operating) budget override will allow us to continue that important work and honor our commitment to our teachers.”

maintained by the Parks Department, where the only Civil War battle in Arizona was fought. Erected there is a sign about the battle that has a Confederate flag and refers to the “War Between the States.’’ There also is a plaque “dedicated to those Confederate frontiersmen’’ who occupied the Arizona territory the Confederacy had claimed as its own and fought off Union soldiers. Mesnard said there are things to consider when tearing down monuments to soldiers. “They were drafted,’’ he said. “And probably most of the soldiers didn’t own slaves or probably couldn’t afford to own slaves anyway.’’ But Mesnard said he’s not blind to what the war was about. “They were fighting about slavery, which is an abhorrent institution,’’ he said. Rep. Reginald Bolding, D-Laveen, said Ducey should take the lead in removing all of the monuments to the Confederacy and those who fought for it. “These were people who were saying

people who looked like me should not have equal rights, we should be slaves,’’ Bolding said. And he said it is “appalling’’ that African Americans have to have these on public property and, in some cases, maintained at public expense. Megan Rose, spokeswoman for the state Department of Administration, said her agency is responsible for maintenance and cleaning of all the monuments across from the Capitol as well as tending the areas around them. And when someone put white paint on the Confederate monument there this past week, it was state employees who cleaned it off. Scarpinato said the public sides with Ducey in wanting to keep the monuments in place. He cited a national Marist Poll done for NPR and PBS that said 62 percent of Americans think the monuments and statutes to the Confederacy should stay, with 27 percent saying they should be removed because some find them offensive.

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Around Chandler Our Stories series looks at Chandler, region in ’50s and ’60s

A discussion celebrating the 1950s and 1960s in Chandler and the East Valley is the next topic in the continuing Our Stories Speaker Series. “First Stop and Last Stop: Car Culture of the East Valley’s State Route 87” takes you back to the heyday of car travel in the 1950s and 1960s. Explore the history of the hotels, service stations and neon signs associated with them where travelers made their last stop before heading south to Tucson or their first stop on their return to the Valley. The series, from 10:30 a.m. to noon Saturday, Sept. 9, at the Sunset Library, 4930 W. Ray Road, features Vic Linoff, East Valley historian and president of the Mesa Preservation Foundation. He will discuss the motels and neon of Mesa’s Main Street. Chandler Museum administrator Jody Crago will cover the stops along Arizona Avenue in Chandler when “color television” on a hotel sign made people hit their brakes and check in. The event is free, open to the public and presented by the Chandler Museum, Chandler Public Library and Chandler Historical Society. “These two talks will have you take a step back into time and into the world of mid-century architecture and urban planning,” said Jody Crago, Chandler museum administrator. “This is always a fun era to explore. And attendees will get to see how the period was taking hold in the Phoenix area and the culture of the East Valley’s State Route 87.” Our Stories is an ongoing series of Chandler and Arizona history presentations by guest speakers sharing stories and firstperson accounts that are enhanced with multimedia presentations, demonstrations and music. Information: 480-782-2751,

Kyrene governing board adopts policy for student transport

Kyrene School Board has approved a policy stating that during school or school-sponsored functions, students may be transported only in school-approved vehicles operated by district-authorized personnel unless specific approval by the superintendent has been obtained. The board specifically forbids any employee to transport students for school purposes without prior authorization by the superintendent.

Each district employee or governing board member authorized to use a private vehicle for district purposes shall be notified in writing that their personal automobile insurance is the primary coverage and district insurance coverage is secondary.

Red Cross blood donors in Chandler can get a free haircut

People who donate blood or platelets to the Red Cross at any of its upcoming drives in Chandler can get a coupon for a free haircut at Sport Clips. Drives will be 1-6 p.m. Sept. 6 at Chandler Gilbert Family YMCA, 1655 W. Frye Road; 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sept. 10 at the Hilton Phoenix Chandler, 2929 W. Frye Road, and 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Sept. 12 at MidFirst Bank, 4900 S. Gilbert Road. The coupon is valid through Nov. 11 at participating Sport Clips locations. Donors must have a valid email address on record to receive the coupon. Donors can an appointment to donate using the free Blood Donor App, online at or by calling 1-800-733-2767.

Sun Lakes Ladies Chit and Chat Club meeting Sept. 6

The Ladies Community Chit and Chat Group Breakfast will meet at Cottonwood Country Club in the Sun Lakes Ballroom at 9 a.m. Wednesday, Sept. 6. All women in the community are invited to attend and share their ideas and talents with new and old friends. According to the group, women can share memories, discuss accomplishments and even unburden themselves about a loss. They also can find solutions to everyday problems, frustrations and maybe even conquer updates on computer and technology usage. Answers to trusts, health issues and investments also might be discovered. Attendees order off the menu and each person will be able to pay for their own breakfast. For reservations, information or questions: Rose Pachura at 480-802-0775 or

Local coffee shop, nonprofit honor veterans with live music People can honor veterans while listening to live music and getting a coffee buzz in Chandler. Nonprofit organization Notes for Knights is honoring military members who never came home, as well as those who did

return to the United States on POW/MIA Day 7-9 p.m. Sept. 15 at SoZo Coffeehouse, 1982 N. Alma School Road. Musicians will perform and people can bid on items in a silent auction, as well as enter a 50/50 raffle. Customers can also write cards that will be sent to veterans. The first 100 veterans at the event will get a free drink and bag of goodies. Veterans can register at Chandlerbased Notes for Knights provides letters of gratitude to veterans.

Chandler Public Library awarded grant for early literacy programs

The Chandler Public Library has been awarded a $15,000 federal grant through the Library Services and Technology Act to help get preschool-age children ready to start school. The money will aid programs such as “Ready, Set, Kindergarten!,” a seven-week program for 4- and 5-year-olds preparing to enter kindergarten. The program helps children work on social, emotional, academic and fine and gross motor skills, which their caregivers can then help the children with at home. The grant was presented by the Arizona State Library, Archives and Public Records, a division of the Secretary of State, with federal funds from the Institute of Museum and Library Service. Information:

New owner planning upgrade of Radisson Hotel in Chandler

A new owner is planning a multimilliondollar upgrade of a Radisson Hotel in Chandler. CBRE Hotels said it has arranged for the sale of the hotel at 7475 W. Chandler Blvd. to a private partnership based in California for an undisclosed price. Granite Hospitality of Phoenix had owned it. Jennifer Bergamo, vice president of CBRE Hotels in Phoenix, along with Mark Darrington and Larry Kaplan, senior vice presidents of CBRE Hotels, represented the seller in this deal. “The national marketing process for the Radisson was extremely robust as the hotel offered multiple value levers and provided investors the opportunity to enter the Phoenix market at a price below replacement cost,” Bergamo said. The new owner is expected to start the multimillion-dollar hotel renovations in the next year. The Radisson Hotel Phoenix

Chandler is just off Interstate 10, centrally located to many corporate and leisuretype operations.

Chandler to honor Labor Day with office closures

The City of Chandler offices will be closed Sept. 4 in observance of Labor Day. While the city’s administrative offices will not be open, trash and recycling collection will take place as usual. The Recycling-Solid Waste Collection Facility for residential self-haul will also be closed. The downtown, Basha, Hamilton and Sunset libraries will be closed, as will the Chandler Tennis Center at Tumbleweed Park. The Tumbleweed Recreation Center will be open from 7 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Sept. 4. Also closed will be the city’s Environmental Education Center, Snedigar Recreation Center, Senior Center and downtown Community Center. The Chandler Museum at the McCullough-Price House will be closed, as it is every Monday. Lap-swimming sessions will not be held at Hamilton or Mesquite Groves aquatic centers. However, Arrowhead Pool, Desert Oasis, Hamilton, Mesquite Groves and Nozomi Aquatic centers will be open from noon to 5 p.m. on Sept. 4, but Folley Pool will be closed. Information:

Dancers can audition for Chandler “Nutcracker” ballet

Young dancers can audition for a part in “The Nutcracker” production that will be on stage at Chandler Center for the Arts as well as Mesa Arts Center. Auditions are Sept. 9 for Ballet Etudes’ 31st anniversary of the ballet, one of the longest-running shows in the Valley. It will be performed over four weekends. The technique audition for girls will be 1-3 p.m. Sept. 9 at Ballet Etudes and BE School of Dance, 2401 E. Baseline Road, Gilbert. Registration for those auditions runs from noon to 12:45 p.m. Boys may audition 3-3:30 p.m. with registration 2:30-3 p.m. An advanced audition, where female dancers must be able to do pointe work, will be 3:30-6:30 p.m. The registration fee for auditions is $15. “The Nutcracker” typically has a cast of more than 100 dancers, and those ages 7 to 18 are welcome to audition. Information:













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DAYS ON MARKET 24,641 23,520

77 Days

-5 month over month -6 year over year



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HOME BUYERS from page 1 ed toward renting in (the) last five years, but we are able to show them that they can spend less on a mortgage payment (than they currently spend on rent).” Median apartment rents in Gilbert have gone up 3.4 percent over the past year. Median rents in Chandler have risen 5 percent in the same span, according to rent reports from Apartment List, an online rental marketplace. Nevarez and Jencks also said rising interest rates are a motivator, spurring members of the generation to buy homes now rather than later when their money will not go as far. Predictably, age is also playing a role. “A lot of millennials are at the age for starting families and suddenly living close to nightlife is less important,” Jencks said.

“They want to live in safe family neighborhoods and don’t want to be super-far away from work, which makes Chandler and Gilbert attractive.” Both cities have done a good job of developing a variety of different housing, employment and entertainment opportunities while still maintaining things like good schools and low crime rates that are hard to find in larger cities, Nevarez said. The concentration of high-paying jobs in Chandler and Gilbert is another attraction for young home buyers. Factors that have historically kept millennials from buying homes include concerns about income and debt. In 2015, the average income of people ages 25-29 was $27,100, well below the average of $30,300 in 2000, according to Harvard University’s State of the Nation’s Housing Report 2017. This has led millennials to put off home

buying in favor of living with their parents longer or opting for renting. However, as millennials age they should form households at rates similar to previous generations, according to the report. With employers like Intel, Orbital ATK, Banner Health, Go Daddy, Verizon, Bank of America and others, Chandler and Gilbert have access to millennials with the incomes necessary to purchase a home. According to Gilbert Department of Economic Development, the town’s “Up and Coming Families” demographic has an average age of 30.7 years and a median household income of $64,000. In Chandler, the average age of all residents is 34.9 years old and the median overall income of the population is $75,633, according to the city. Those incomes also work as an incentive to buy.


“In addition to soaring rental prices, there are the tax benefits,” Jencks said. “(Millennials) are getting well-paying jobs and paying more in taxes than ever before.” The types of homes millennials are buying run the gamut. While many younger buyers are interested in older homes with character, there is a limited supply of those types of properties in Chandler and Gilbert, Jencks said. Both Jencks and Nevarez have seen younger buyers gravitate toward new builds and homes that are updated over fixer uppers. “The whole idea of sweat equity is not of interest to them,” said Jencks. “They would prefer to pay top dollar for a home that is move-in ready.” They are also willing to purchase smaller homes with higher-end amenities over larger dated properties.

Chandler area residents come together for United Food Bank BY JIM WALSH Staff

While white supremacists were marching on Charlottesville, Virginia, and Americans were mourning an increasingly divided country, Chandler and other residents were uniting behind a simple but important cause: that no one should go hungry. Tempe residents opened their hearts by donating 6,000 pounds of food to a food bank were supplies were running low. The shortage at the Tempe Community Action Agency’s Food Pantry was at least partially related to the catastrophic failure of a compressor at the United Food Bank’s freezer in Mesa. When United employees returned to work on Aug. 7, they found 21,650 pounds of spoiled food, including frozen meat, dairy products and fruit products. Defrosted turkeys and other food that could be salvaged was sent immediately to East Valley soup kitchens and food banks to avoid waste, while deliveries to food banks in Gila, Navajo and Pinal counties were postponed. The United Food Bank’s primary mission is to distribute food to 222 food programs in the East Valley and other counties, including Mesa’s Paz de Cristo soup kitchen and the Tempe food bank. United still operates an emergency food box program on Fridays at its former location at Mesa Drive and Javelina.

But United’s emergency quickly became an opportunity for caring as East Valley residents and businesses responded by contributing $10,000 to repair the freezer. Now, there is a new hashtag campaign (#fillthefreezer), and a Go Fund Me page aimed at replenishing the spoiled food, expected to cost more than $38,000. It was a great relief to Dave Richins, the United Food Bank’s president and CEO, when he walked into the large freezer on Tuesday morning and noticed that the temperature was a frigid 12 degrees. Frozen food was stored for a week in a refrigerated truck that ran constantly in United’s parking lot for a week. Employees used forklifts to move the perishable items into the freezer. “The generosity of the community has been truly incredible,” Richins said. “I feel like Jimmy Stewart at the end of ‘It’s a Wonderful Life.’ It’s really humbling.” Richins said that no one wants to see someone go hungry, especially children, and that the cause of fighting hunger transcends politics. “While politicians argue, people sit there hungry,” said Richins, a former Mesa City Council member. “Feed them first.” Boeing, Cox Charities and the Walmart Foundation were among the charitable donors to United, along with many individuals. One promising sign was that about half the donors had not made contributions to United before.

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Randy Land puts food into United Food Bank’s freezer after it was repaired.

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Joe, Manavy, Joey and mom Vikki Gleb (L to R) and their trunk full of donations.

“The United Food Bank has been here for many years. People believe in the mission of this organization. It’s the reputation this organization has established for many years,” Richins said. Although the Tempe food bank receives food for several sources, United is a primary source. The cupboard was so bare at the Tempe food bank that officials took the unusual step of appealing to the public directly, scheduling a food drive that collected 6,000 pounds of food at Daley Park in only a couple of hours. “It’s a really good sign. We were really happy, ecstatic, that the public responded to this,” said Deborah Arteaga, the executive director of the Tempe Community Action Agency. “It will help us get through the week.” She said United’s broken compressor percolated down to her food bank, which experienced a shortage of milk, eggs, cheese and frozen foods. “We saw, definitely, a decline in what we had to offer,” Arteaga said. “We had no meat last week.” Ed Baker, president of the Tempe food bank’s board of directors, said people look at the glittering buildings along the city’s waterfront and forget that one out of four children qualify for free or reduced lunches. Richins said west Mesa has the same problem, with 80 percent of children at some schools qualifying. Summer is typically a bad time for food banks, which are often forgotten by

donors with other things on their minds until Thanksgiving and Christmas, the traditional season for remembering the less fortunate, Baker said. In addition, demand from low-income people, living paycheck to paycheck, grows when children are home and not receiving two free meals a day at school. Items containing protein, such peanut butter, tuna fish and canned meats, are highly prized as donations. “We were in a dire situation. It was a perfect storm,” Baker said. “It is incredibly reassuring that we had individuals who were previous clients, who wanted to give.” Richins said the biggest impact of United’s freezer breakdown was on the rural food banks because they were scheduled to receive deliveries that week and got nothing instead. He said he hopes to resume deliveries as quickly as possible, after the freezer is re-stocked. Renea Shaffer, site manager for the Gila Community Food Bank in Globe, acknowledged that United’s freezer breakdown had an impact on her operation, but she said she was able to obtain enough food from other sources to get by, using salvage from grocery stores and available funds to buy items that were otherwise unavailable. “We’re doing OK,” she said. “There’s nobody without food. United takes care of us really well. We were pretty well stocked.” – Reach Jim Walsh at 480-898-5639 or at




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Budding chefs can bake at Chuck Wagon Cook-off SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

Budding young chefs can get a taste of historical desserts and engage in some friendly competition at Chandler’s upcoming annual Chuck Wagon Cook-off. The deadline is 5 p.m. Sept. 29 for Valley youths ages 10 to 15 to submit their entries if they want to compete in the Junior Chuck Wagon Cook-off on Nov. 10. In the special youth event, chefs will get help in cooking one of three desserts in a Dutch oven over a wood fire that were common in the period of 1880s chuck wagons. Children and teens do not need any previous cooking experience to enter the competition, where they will explore making dishes such as cobblers,

upside-down cakes and buckles found in immigrants’ recipes and commonly eaten by pioneer families. Event staffers will provide the ingredients needed at the cook-off and the young cooks may add their own 1880s-era spices and sweeteners. The competition starts at 10 a.m. at Tumbleweed Ranch. The Chuck Wagon Cook-off is in its eighth year and features teams from around the West delivering the tastes, smells, sights and sounds of 1880s chuck wagons. For rules and applications: chandleraz. gov/chuckwagon. Those with questions can contact the competition’s coordinator at 602-430-0242 or at

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City of Chandler Insider



Chandler offers diverse recreational amenities BY THE CITY OF CHANDLER

There are few people who have been to every one of Chandler’s 60-plus parks, every recreational facility or every aquatic center. With so many outstanding amenities, it’s likely that there are some unique recreational opportunities that are hidden gems, unknown to most residents and visitors. Many of the niche amenities that exist in Chandler today were developed in response to suggestions from engaged residents who approached the mayor and City Council with their ideas and then worked closely with the city’s Parks and Recreation divisions to turn them into reality. Here are some of the specialized recreational amenities that you may not know about, but they help make Chandler such a great place to live and play. • Archery The archery range on the north end of the Paseo Vista Recreation Area (McQueen and Ocotillo roads) is one of the best in Arizona, with 25 90-meter lanes, five 60-meter lanes and four 30-meter lanes. It is open for use every day, from sun-up to sundown. The range is managed through a partnership between the city and the Paseo Vista Archery Club, which organizes classes, tournaments and maintains the facility. Information on classes can be found at chandleraz. gov/breaktime or on the club website at • BMX Bikes Chandler’s 25,000-square-foot Espee Bike Park is a BMX rider’s dream and a

Photos courtesy of the City of Chandler

Youths get ready to shoot targets at the Paseo Vista Recreation Area.

perfect example of the city working with residents to meet their unique recreational needs. This free, non-supervised, bike-only (BMX, freestyle, grind) public facility is located at 450 E. Knox Road. It incorporates features that allow users of varying ability levels to be challenged. Espee Bike Park is regarded as one of the best in the country, and it gives Chandler youth and other Arizona communities an alternative riding place to business districts, school grounds, canal banks, dirt lots and other unconventional locations. A special competition will be held there Nov. 18. Details can be found at ricket •C Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players each on a cricket field. At the center of the field is a rectangular 22-yard-long “pitch” with

Louis Wakefield is one of many RC aircraft enthusiasts who fly their small planes at the Chandler Bowl at Thude Park.

a target called the wicket (a set of three wooden stumps topped by two bails) at each end. Chandler has a dedicated pitch at the Snedigar Sportsplex. • Disc Golf The wide open spaces found at the Paseo Vista Recreation Area offer a perfect location for a disc golf course. Disc golf is played much like traditional golf, but instead of a ball and clubs, the players use a flying disc, or Frisbee. A second shorter disc golf course in Chandler is at the Mesquite Groves park site, on the west side of Val Vista Drive, a quarter mile north of Riggs Road. • Equestrians There are several places in Chandler to ride horses, including sections of the Paseo Trail along the Consolidated Canal in east Chandler, and at Veterans Oasis Park, 4050 E. Chandler Heights Road. This 113-acre park features a lush wetland habitat with horse trails accessible through v-notches or horse step-over gates in the fence at three access points. • Fishing Chandler has two community (urban) fishing lakes that are stocked by the Arizona Game and Fish Commission every two weeks from mid-September through June, with species including catfish, trout, sunfish and bass. Visitors ages 10 years old or older must have a current Arizona fishing license, and details are available at • Pickleball This paddle sport combines many elements of tennis, badminton and pingpong into a simple game that can be played indoors or outdoors. In Chandler, the Tumbleweed Recreation Center has

two indoor courts available for play every Tuesday and Thursday, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and from 7-10 a.m. on Saturday. Six outdoor courts are being added to Arrowhead Meadows Park. • RC Aircraft Radio-controlled (RC) aircraft hobbyists have an airfield available to fly their craft at Thude Park, just east of the Price Freeway frontage road on Galveston Street. The “Chandler Bowl Flying Field,” as it is called by RC pilots, has a small dirt runway, a covered ramada and open skies for flying aircraft and helicopters. Weekends and evenings are often the most popular times to watch the fun. • Skateboarding Since the day it opened to the public (on March 24, 2000), the Chandler Skatepark has attracted some of the best skateboarders in the world to south Chandler. This spacious, 35,000-square-foot facility is a free, non-supervised facility for use by skateboarders and in-line skaters of all skill levels. The Skate Park is located at 4500 S. Basha Road. • Table Tennis More commonly known as Ping Pong, this is another fun paddle sport that has been played casually by almost everyone. New tables were purchased and times set aside at the downtown Community Center, 125 E. Commonwealth Avenue. The new Chandler Table Tennis Club conducts free open play Mondays and Wednesdays, 8:30-11 a.m., and Wednesdays and Thursdays from 5-9 p.m. No paddle? No problem. Just go and check it out!” For more table tennis details, including upcoming special events and tournaments, call 480-782-2727. In addition to these activities, park visitors can enjoy specialty activities and attractions at these parks: • Veterans Oasis Park GeoCaching, Demonstration Garden, Solar System Walk, Reptile Center • Tumbleweed Park Arizona Railway Museum, Chandler Tennis Center, Playtopia Playground, Tumbleweed Ranch esert Breeze Park •D Desert Breeze Railroad & Carousel, Hummingbird Habitat, Demonstration Campground There also are six pools and aquatic centers, three spray pads, four dog parks and much more. Information:

Cricket is a bat-and-ball game played between two teams of 11 players each on a cricket field. Chandler has a dedicated pitch at the Snedigar Sportsplex, and groups also play cricket in other city parks and school fields.


City of Chandler Insider




Game on: City recreation staff meets residents’ demands BY THE CITY OF CHANDLER

Demographic shifts in population are not only driving residential and retail development patterns in the city; they also are affecting Chandler’s recreational programs and amenities. The increase in cultural diversity, more residents moving in from outside Arizona and an aging population are all prompting the city’s Parks and Recreation divisions to conduct regular needs assessments to guide future programs and services. Chandler recreation manager Joe Petrella is part of the leadership team working Photos courtesy of the City of Chandler to keep the city’s facilities and programs Chandler recreation manager Joe Petrella is relevant to the people who live, work and part of the leadership team striving to keep play here. the city’s facilities and programs relevant to the people who live, work and play here. Petrella is on his second stint with the city of Chandler. From 2001 to 2005, he oversaw operations at Snedigar Recreation “We are always adjusting our programCenter. After recreation-related career ming and looking at ways we can modify stops in Connecticut, Virginia and Montana, existing amenities or add new ones,” Petrelhe returned to Chandler in January to man- la added. age the Recreation Division. “People recreate differently depending “I loved working here, and when the op- on where they are from or their stage in portunity to return opened, I was excited life. Some cultures are drawn to paddle about the possibilities to work in a city with sports like badminton and ping-pong; otha progressive recreation model,” Petrella ers to extreme sports like skateboarding or said. “Chandler leaders are committed to riding BMX bikes. We have to adapt to the building and maintaining a diverse collecpeople we serve.” tion of facilities and programs that meet Sometimes, it takes active and engaged the needs of the community.” residents advocating for their particular Meeting those wide-ranging recreation sport or hobby to drive changes in parks needs is an ongoing challenge as people and recreation. age or move in and out of the city. The most recent example in Chandler

People can play pickleball at the Tumbleweed Recreation Center, which has two indoor courts available for play every Tuesday and Thursday, from 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., and from 7 to 10 a.m. on Saturday. Six outdoor courts are being added to Arrowhead Meadows Park.

is a resident who asked the city to develop a health and fitness program centered on ping-pong. There were few opportunities in the East Valley for fans of the sport, and Scottsdale was the closest program. Petrella visited Scottsdale and spoke with a number of participants from the Chandler area who said if the city added more pingpong tables that they would be used. “They were right,” he said. The Recreation Division purchased four new tables a few months ago, added day and evening hours at the downtown Community Center, and the impact was immediate. “Ping-pong is already exceeding our expectations, and we are considering

adding more tables,” Petrella said. “All that happened because a resident made a case for ping-pong, we researched the issue and responded to meet the need.” A similar process happened with the growing sport of pickleball, a paddle sport popular among retirees and active adults. Pickleball was introduced at the Tumbleweed Recreation Center on a limited basis last year and has been so successful that six outdoor pickleball courts are currently being built at Arrowhead Meadows Park. Petrella acknowledges that not every sport or activity can be accommodated in the city, due to limited space and competing needs, but he says Chandler Recreation staff is always looking for new ways to get residents to come out and play.

The End of The Year is Coming!

Time to remove wisdom teeth Nish Shah, D.M.D., M.D.

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Wisdom teeth are almost certain to cause problems if left in place. This is particularly true of impacted wisdom teeth, such problems may occur suddenly and often at the most inconvenient time. While the kids are out for summer vacation, there couldn’t be a better time to take care of this preventative procedure. The average mouth does not have room for the third molars, also known as “wisdom teeth,” to come in properly. These poorly positioned impacted teeth can cause many problems such as swelling, stiffness, pain and illness. The pressure from the wisdom teeth may move other teeth and disrupt the orthodontic of natural alignment of teeth. The most serious problem occurs when tumors or cysts form around the impacted wisdom tooth, resulting in the destruction of the jawbone and healthy teeth. It is now recommended that impacted wisdom teeth be removed early to prevent these problems. Most commonly we remove wisdom teeth between the ages of 14 and 22 years whether they are causing problems or not. The procedure is technically easier and patients recover much quicker when they are younger. What is a relatively minor procedure at 20 can become quite difficult in patients as they get older. Also, the risk of complications increases with age and the healing process is slower. We utilize the latest technologies and techniques to make your procedure go smoother and your healing process faster. For a consultation, please call Dr. Shah or Dr. Nguyen at 480.814.9500. Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon. Board Certified, American Board of Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery.

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EV experts offer help for summer seasonal affective disorder BY CHRIS BENINCASO Cronkite News

Mike Johnson, a 50-year-old Phoenix flight reservation agent, endures summer’s blistering heat and hours of relentless sun behind his home’s shuttered blinds, saying he loses sleep and weight. It isn’t clear whether he has summer depression, a rare seasonal disorder, but he feels especially sad and frustrated at this time of year. An East Valley medical expert said seasonal affective disorder can strike people in the Valley and other warm climates and there are resources to help those impacted by the weather in Chandler. Dr. Rena Szabo, psychology director for Banner Medical Group, said an estimated 1 percent of Americans suffer from summer seasonal affective disorder. Summer SAD is a “type of depression” that “can be related to heat, humidity, light or a combination of the aforementioned,” said Szabo, who practices out of Banner MD Anderson Cancer Center in Gilbert and Banner Behavioral Health Hospital in Scottsdale. She added that the summer “onset of SAD includes more agitation, anxiety, weight loss, loss of appetite, difficulty sleeping” than winter SAD. “The Valley’s summer temperatures, humidity and long days are a perfect trio to instigate summer SAD symptoms

for those who are vulnerable,” Szabo said. Medical experts say heat, light, circadian rhythms and even the empty streets during a sizzling day could be triggers to summer SAD. Ian Cook, who directs the UCLA Depression Research and Clinic Program, said people may not realize they have summer depression. “For some people, isolation is the big factor,” Cook said. “For other people feeling low self-worth is a major driver of it. For some people, it’s their inability to think clearly and function. There are many different ways that a person can experience depression, and they’re all awful.” Johnson, who moved to Phoenix from Chicago three years ago, said he was miserable his first summer. He thought his deflated mood was abnormal. Johnson hadn’t heard of summer depression but said it explained his response to Phoenix summers. “Without talking about it, especially when it comes to mental health, a lot of people are stigmatized,” he said. He said winter depression, which he faced in Chicago, was more readily accepted and generated more resources, like UV lamps designed to provide vitamin D. Szabo recommends anyone who believes they might be suffering from summer SAD seek help from a psychologist or psychiatrist. She

also suggests they stay in the airconditioning and indoors. Other tips Szabo recommends are exercising, maintaining sleep hygiene and keeping a schedule. She said exposure to early morning light also might help. Integrated clinical psychologists work with primary care physicians at Banner Health Primary Care clinics in Chandler, Gilbert, Queen Creek and Phoenix to manage patients’ behavioral health and medical needs, Szabo said. Banner Behavioral Health Hospital also provides two satellite clinics in Chandler and North Scottsdale, where Intensive Outpatient Programs are provided for behavioral health issues. Treatment is also available at other Banner centers around the Valley. Despite the many resources in the East Valley, some dispute that seasonal depression exists. A study of more than 34,000 participants published last year in “Clinical Psychological Science” says they reported no change in depressive symptoms during different times of year. But other medical experts and information on websites including WebMD and in publications like “Psychology Today” say summer SAD is real. Thomas Wehr, former chief of clinical psychobiology at the National Institute of Mental Health, said his studies uncovered people who use a range of coping strategies.

He said one, known as the mole, would flee from one air-conditioned setting to another, be that a building or his car. Another woman swam in cold lakes every day. Another, based in China, built a refrigerated stronghold in his basement. Johnson said commiserating with others on social media and writing in journals has helped. He said he also finds community in his husband, pets and activism. “I have to find ways to force myself to go outside,” he said. “Or even if it’s just going to the store, forcing myself to get out of the house to get that interaction.” Cook said people with symptoms of depression should seek help from a care provider for consultation and treatment. He also recommended more social contact and simple measures like rest, healthy eating and exercise. “Depression is a serious disorder,” Cook said. “It’s associated with more disability than heart disease or cancer, according to the World Health Organization. And as one of the advocacy groups coined the slogan many years ago, ‘depression is a flaw in chemistry, not in character.’ These are brain conditions, at least, and deserve to be treated.” To learn more about the treatment locations and resources Banner Health provides, visit – Colleen Sparks contributed to this story.

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Tempe Union superintendent candidates have long history with the district BY PAUL MARYNIAK Executive Editor

The two internal candidates vying to become Tempe Union High School District’s next superintendent are longtime educators with a record of service to the district. The governing board earlier this month said Associate Superintendent Kevin J. Mendivil and Assistant Superintendent Anna Battle are the only two of five top district administrators who indicated an interest in replacing Superintendent Kenneth Baca, who has made his resignation effective next June 30.

The board also outlined a process for considering Mendivil and Battle that included updated resumes and three letters of reference and an interview by a former district solicitor who will then report to the board in a closed-door meeting. At a closed-door meeting Sept. 6, the board will develop its own interview questions for the two candidates and develop some additional topics they will be asked to write about. AFN asked to conduct a limited interview with the two candidates, but district spokeswoman Jennifer Liewer said, “It wouldn’t be appropriate for the

She has taught administration, leadership, and “principalship courses for universities in Arizona.”

– The Arizona Alliance of Black ​School Educators

The board has indicated a preference to look inside for his successor and hopes to name either Battle or Mendivil at a meeting Sept. 13. However, board members said if they cannot agree on either candidate, they will extend their search and possibly look outside the district. Not in the board’s plan is any general public outreach to see what parents, community leaders and other people in the district might want in Tempe Union’s next leader. Gilbert Public Schools board is currently looking for a new superintendent and attracted more than 5,000 respondents to an online survey it launched as part of its search. But board President DeeAnne McClenahan and some of her colleagues said at several meetings that all board members speak with the public often and that there were internal administrators whose qualifications made them worth considering first.

candidates to answer your questions prior to conducting their interviews with the board.” The board will interview Battle and Mendivil in a closed-door session Sept. 13 prior to announcing its decision. Mendivil joined the district in 2011 as assistant superintendent for human resources until he attained his current post three years later. He oversees human resources and benefits as well as community relations. As assistant superintendent for human resources he was responsible for a range of employee-related matters from recruitment to mediation to evaluating performance. Before coming to Tempe Union, Mendivil was the director of human resources–certified personnel at Mesa Public Schools, in charge of employee issues related to teachers and other certified staffers.

Photos courtesy of Tempe Union High School District

Kevin Mendivil, associate superintendent for Tempe Union, also is seeking the top job.

Anna Battle, associate superintendent for operations, is a candidate for Tempe Union’s next superintendent.

An Arizona School Boards Association biography says Mendivil “has an advanced knowledge of academia, student needs, key issues in education and employee relations from his background beginning as a special education teacher, later becoming principal of an elementary school.” He obtained his bachelor of education in special education degree from Arizona State in 1986, his masters in 1996 from the University of Phoenix and his doctorate from ASU in 2008. Battle is the former principal of Desert Vista High School and the mother of four children. She has been with the district for more than 20 years, and started as a teacher for six years. As assistant superintendent for district operations, she oversees transportation, athletics, student affairs and safety and the operation of the district’s physical facilities. Earlier this year, she was one of three finalists for the job of executive director of the Arizona Interscholastic Association.

She is vice president of the AIA board. “As collegiate athlete at Arizona State University and then a teacher and coach of high-school students for a myriad school sports, Dr. Battle takes every opportunity to teach teachers and administrators effective strategies to improve academic, athletic and leadership skills to high school students and other adults in secondary schools,” the Arizona Alliance of Black ​ School Educators says in a biography. She obtained her bachelor’s, masters and doctoral degrees from ASU. “She has taught administration, leadership, and principalship courses for universities in Arizona,” the alliance added, noting Battle was honored by the National AdvancED Council for her leadership at Desert Vista. She also received the AIA Pursuing Victory with Honor Award in 2013 and the NAACP Education Image Award, and has authored a book and coauthored another.

Retired teacher asks Tempe Union board for superintendent forum SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

A retired Tempe Union teacher said she is dismayed that the district’s governing board is not including a community forum in its process for selecting a new superintendent. In a letter to all five board members, Cindy Glick, who worked for the district for 20 years, wrote: “Since you have two internal candidates for superintendent, it is very important for the stakeholders to feel they are a part of this selection process. Mrs. Helm stated at the last Board meeting that you don’t want to turn this into … I am suggesting that you hold a forum in which the staff can ask vital questions to the candidates.” Glick said only board member Michelle Helm replied to her letter. In that Aug. 23 reply, Helm said, “We are talking to principals and other internal employees, but not holding a forum.” Stating she had worked under four different superintendents during her career in the district, Glick told the board that “the one virtue that

remained constant was the support they offered to all teachers and staff, which made all the difference in the world in our morale.”

added. “People might come up to you in public and chat, but the pressing issues that weigh on a teacher’s mind are oftentimes not addressed.

All the years that teachers and staff had to work “ without any pay raises, yet didn’t leave the district, is an example of our dedication and loyalty because we knew that our superintendent supported us.

– Cindy Glick, 20-year district employee “All the years that teachers and staff had to work without any pay raises, yet didn’t leave the district, is an example of our dedication and loyalty because we knew that our superintendent supported us,” she continued. She said a forum “would go a long way to help the staff feel that they have some input on this selection that will greatly affect them.” “No member of the board knows what concerns teachers have,” Glick

“Opening up a forum in which concerned folks can pose the same question to both candidates will not only benefit their emotional component, but just as important, it will provide all of you with a more complete perspective of each candidate and their vision for TUSHD.” Glick told the board that a forum would be “a win-win in helping you make the biggest decision which will affect the greatest number of

people” and suggested it could set the parameters for such a session could be conducted. Glick offered her services in helping to interview the two candidates, telling the board, “Too often teachers complain to one another that there is no transparency in the board. Having a teacher in the process would go a long way in how teachers view the board and increase their understanding and support of your decisions.” Glick told STSN that a number of teachers shared her concerns about the way the decision process has been structured, but said current employees likely won’t step forward. “The reason people don’t come forward is because there will be hell to pay if they are still employed by the district,” she said. “It is no lie when I tell you that your life will become unbearable should you decide to speak out on any issue that they perceive to bring negative attention to them. If you bring a problem to light, their solution is to make you go away, not fix the problem.”




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Chandler attorney turning to advocacy for seniors BY PAUL MARYNIAK Executive Editor

In a world of caretakers, guardians and probate lawyers, Don Scher sees a near void. He doesn’t see many trustworthy friends and advocates for people too old or infirmed to handle their financial and lifestyle affairs. That’s why he is giving up his Chandler law practice to devote himself to a new business, hiring himself out as a “personal counselor, agent, advocate and protector” for elderly people who want to protect themselves in the future and caring relatives or friends of elderly and other people who cannot take care of themselves. The Southern California native, a father of five and grandfather of 11, has been a lawyer for 30 years, gravitating to the profession because he wanted “to protect my clients’ interests, both personally and financially, and in business matters as well.” “I have emphasized in my practice, protection of the elderly, with particular interest in combatting elder abuse and financial exploitation of vulnerable adults,” he explained. “My law practice involves wills, trusts, estate planning, guardianship, conser-

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Chandler attorney Don Scher has decided to drop his law practice and become an advocate for seniors and dependent individuals.

vatorships, probate and trust administration, in addition to corporations, real estate, entity formation, franchise, contracts and general business matters.” But while taking care of his widowed mother, he saw the ravages that time and dementia can exact. Recalling how in that time spent his

mother “went from an independent widow of 77 to age 92 and didn’t know who she was or where she was,” Scher said he saw “the challenges facing seniors, how they are treated by the community and how they are exploited.” And now he’s somewhat more cynical of the odds of being scammed.

“Thirty years ago, people used to think that 10 percent of the people were dishonest honest and 90 percent were honest. Now, it’s 10 percent of the people are trustworthy and 90 percent are crooks.” Scher said his clients “are parents and grandparents who want to protect themselves by effective estate planning” or “by anticipating the challenges in their families.” They also include “children who find that their parents have been exploited by a family member or some third party, and want to stop the exploitation, or family members who need legal authority to care for a parent or family member, both medically and financially, or the surviving widow or widower, who is without friends or family support who wants to be sure that there is someone to step in to take care of them if they become ill or lose the capacity to make medical and/or financial decisions.” His goal for them all: “I want to keep them out of the court system. I want their golden years to actually be golden and pleasurable.” “That’s why I am starting this new practice,” he added. “I want to be able to act as their best friend and confidante, someone they know who is in their corner.” As an advocate, Scher said he acts as see

ADVOCATE page 22

Big-box stores grow in city for more than retail BY WAYNE SCHUTSKY Staff

Big-box stores – the oft-referenced poster child for the struggling retail market – are experiencing an uptick in Chandler and the East Valley as grocers and non-traditional users aggressively expand in the market. Half of the 14 big-box completions in metro Phoenix in the last 12 months are in the East Valley, including two of the largest facilities on the list, according to CBRE’s Phoenix Retail Big Box Report for Q2 2017. “It just goes to show us that retail isn’t dying; it is adapting,” said Jami Savage, CBRE first vice president. The Fry’s Marketplaces at Mulberry Market in Mesa and Artesian Marketplace in Chandler each total 123,000 square feet. Fry’s has been especially active across the Valley, accounting for six of 14 completions on the list. The Southeast Valley leads all East Valley submarkets with 40 big-box spaces totaling 1,338,833 square feet. “When we look at it as a whole, retail follows rooftops. There is a ton of activity and growth with residential expansion in Southeast Valley,” Savage said. Growth in the East Valley marketplace largely has been driven by grocers and nontraditional users – such as entertainment venues and fitness centers – that face less online competition than traditional retailers. Main Event Entertainment has been especially active in the East Valley and opened its third location near SanTan Village shopping center in Gilbert. The new building is just over 50,000 square feet.

The Main Event, a build-to-suit location, is a rarity in the market. Leasing and sales of existing space accounted for roughly 90 percent of the nearly 500,000 square feet of big-box space absorbed in the second quarter, while new build-to-suit projects accounted for only 10 percent, according to the CBRE report. Alamo Drafthouse, the Austin, Texas-based movie theater chain, is another entertainment brand active in the market. It opened its first Arizona location at the end of 2016 in a 35,467-square-foot space at the revived Chandler Crossings center, at Arizona Avenue and Chandler Heights Boulevard. Alamo’s second Arizona location will anchor the The Collective, a mixed-use project set to open in early 2018 at the northwest corner of Baseline Road and Lakeshore Drive in Tempe. Chandler Crossings is the site of another non-traditional user, BASIS Chandler. The charter school occupies a 69,533-squarefoot space at the center. Discount stores are other users that have been active in the market over the past 12 months. Goodwill opened three new 25,000-square-foot locations in the Valley over that period, including stores at Artesian Marketplace in Gilbert and Heritage Square in Queen Creek. Despite accounting for a relatively small area, the Ahwatukee/Tempe submarket also supports a strong big-box market, with 10 spaces totaling 373,100 square feet. The enclave’s proximity to the high-traffic Interstate 10 is a contributing factor to that. “Because (Ahwatukee) is a smaller

Special to SanTan Sun News

Alamo Drafthouse is looking for big-box locations such as the space it opened at the revived Chandler Crossings senter.

area, you have everything in two intersections and along an interstate,” Savage said. “Having a big-box presence along that interstate (allows retailers) to reach their consumers.” Savage also pointed to the strong housing market and above-average incomes in Ahwatukee as factors driving big-box absorption in the area. Ahwatukee boasted two of the largest big-box completions in the second quarter of 2017 in the forthcoming Mountainside Fitness and Burlington Coat Factory. Both sites are approximately 42,000 square feet at the intersection of Ray Road and 48th Street. Savage expects the high level of big-box

activity to continue in the near future. “Downtown Chandler, Downtown Gilbert and the San Tan area is particular will bring new retail out in that area,” she said. “That is going to be the exciting area in the Southeast Valley to watch in the next quarter.” There is also the possibility of increased big-box development in east Mesa as the Eastmark community continues to grow. Safeway recently announced it will open a 62,000-squarefoot store to anchor the first retail development in the community. – Reach Wayne Schutsky at 480-898‑6533 or



ADVOCATE FROM page 21 his client’s “advisor, agent and representative, working with family members and their own CPA, attorney, insurance and financial advisor. “I will be first and foremost protecting my clients’ from abuse and exploitation as their shield from anyone asking for money in any form,” he said, adding he also plays other roles as well. “I will be there to resolve family disputes, to help deal with family members who have special needs, to mentor family members about how to handle wealth and about education for business and financial matters, and to educate the clients about their options to enzjoy life and to facilitate that enjoyment, without regard to age, mobility or other limitation,” he said.


His background positions him well. With a bachelor’s degree in accounting and law degrees from two universities, he has managed several businesses, developed an office complex and consulted for the state Land Department. He is dismayed by the number of firms and solo practitioners who offer free dinners and lunches under the guise of giving advice, but then end up selling products such as life insurance. His services just aren’t aimed at seniors. There can be issues, for example, that parents can face in caring for a special-needs child or even a son or daughter who has become addicted to drugs or alcohol. “My intention to do personal advocacy business,” Scher said. “I want them to know my sole purpose is to advise them, counsel them.” Information: dscher@cox. net, 602-478-3555.

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An experienced operations leader is handling new responsibilities at TurbineAero, a Chandler-based company. Kevin Parmenter has been appointed to director of customer relations for TurbineAero Repair, TurbineAero’s Auxiliary Power Unit (APU) and Line Replaceable Unit (LRU), Maintenance, Repair, and Overhaul (MRO) business unit. Parmenter will be responsible for program leadership, “along with propelling commercial high quality for the largest business unit of

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Microchip Technology announces record net sales and earnings BY SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

For the quarter that ended June 30, Microchip Technologys recorded net sales of $972.1 million, up 21.6 percent from the same quarter a year ago. The Chandler-based company is a provider of microcontroller, mixed signal, analog and Flash-IP solutions. “Our June quarter financial results were extremely strong and represent an acceleration of our organic growth with our Microchip 2.0 initiative,” Microchip CEO Steve Sanghi said, adding: “Microchip 2.0 combines the product, technology, system and employee strength of Microchip and its previous acquisitions and allows us to provide total system solutions to our customers by selling multiple products into the circuit boards that drive their end applications.” The company reported that cash flow from operations in the June quarter was a record $345 million. As of June 30, the consolidated cash and total investment position on its balance sheet was $1.65 billion. Its inventory was at 100 days – the lowest in seven years. “Our microcontroller businesses performed very strongly in the June quarter with revenue being up 9.5 percent sequentially compared to the March quarter, setting a new record in the process,” said Ganesh Moorthy, Microsoft’s president and COO. “We continue to see customers using microcontrollers that originated from Atmel’s heritage express confidence in Microchip’s stewardship of these product

families,” he continued, adding: “As a result, we are seeing more designs that are in the pipeline going to production and ramping in volume. We are also seeing continued growth in our design-in funnel, which we expect will drive future growth as these designs progress into production over time.” Microchip’s board of directors has declared a record quarterly cash dividend on its common stock of 36.2 cents per share, payable Sept. 5 to stockholders of record on Aug. 21. The company received a 2017 Preferred Supplier Award from Flex. Additionally, Sanghi was honored with the Lifetime Achievement Award from Photo courtesy of Arizona Genius. The SAM D5x and SAM E5x microcontroller (MCU) families are now available from Microchip Technology Inc. Microsoft has also Both the SAM D5x and E5x families said Rod Drake, vice president of announced that it has contain comprehensive cryptographic Microchip’s MCU32 business unit. launched two new SAM microcontroller hardware and software support, enabling “The SAM D5/E5 microcontrollers families with extensive connectivity developers to incorporate security provide an excellent migration path for interface options. The company said measures at a design’s inception. developers wanting a cost-effective these new 32-bit microcontroller families “Applications are becoming increasingly solution with powerful performance, offer extensive connectivity interfaces, complex and there is a great need to move comprehensive interface options and powerful performance and robust to faster MCUs with better connectivity built-in security,” Drake added. hardware-based security for a wide options and flexible peripheral support,” Information: variety of applications.

Attention Back Pain and Sciatica Sufferers: Back by Request...

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Company drives mobile urgent care to patients’ doorsteps BY WAYNE SCHUTSKY Staff

Colorado-based Dispatch Health has brought its mobile urgent care platform to Tempe with plans to expand service to the rest of the East Valley later this year. The company provides mobile urgent care units staffed by a board-certified physician assistant or nurse practitioner and an EMT who can treat patients at home or work. The Honda Priuses used by Dispatch are preloaded with a litany of supplies that allow the team to handle various low-level injuries and illnesses. The teams are equipped to treat a range of issues, including common illnesses, joint and back pain, allergies, rashes, eye infections, gastrointestinal distress and respiratory issues. They also can provide on-site services like IV placement, rapid infectious disease testing, Foley catheter insertion, splints, medication and advanced blood-lab testing. Potential patients can reach the service by phone, online or using smartphone apps for Android and iOS. The company began service in Tempe and select areas in Phoenix and Scottsdale on Aug. 15, marking its first foray outside its home state. The company is the first mobile urgent care service operating in Tempe, though similar services exist in other parts of the Valley. Dispatch Health plans to add a car in the Phoenix metro area in October and expand its coverage area. “We will likely (pursue) East Valley expansion first and then move into the West Valley,” chief strategy officer Kevin Riddleberger said.

Riddleberger said. It is also currently in talks with fire agencies in the Phoenix area to potentially be an option for less-critical calls in the Valley. The company has targeted the senior demographic as a primary user for its services, though it provides care to all age groups. Rather than a replacement for traditional medical services, Special to SanTan Sun News The Honda Priuses used by Dispatch Health are preloaded with a litany Dispatch Health is positioning itself as of supplies that allow the team to handle various low-level injuries a complement to and illnesses. things like emergency services, hospitals and Dispatch Health launched in 2013 in a small primary-care physicians. area in Denver in partnership with the local For instance, the company claims it can emergency management system. It started save users money by avoiding costly emeras a service to respond to some less-critical calls to 911 that did not require an emergency gency room trips for less-critical health issues that do not require that level of care. room transfer in order to free up resources The median charge for the 10 most comfor high-acuity calls, Riddleberger said. The company now has six vehicles in Den- mon emergency room outpatient condiver and one in Colorado City and expects to tions in the U.S. is over $1,230, according to an article published in the multidisciplinary see 10,000 patients in Denver alone in 2017. open-access journal PLOS ONE. In Colorado, it accepts Medicare, Medicaid The uninsured rate for Dispatch Health and many major insurers. customers costs a flat fee of $275, said In Arizona, Dispatch Health works with Riddleberger. Medicare and Medicaid and will begin This is part of a larger trend in the accepting insurers Humana and United health-care industry as a whole, which is Healthcare in September with plans to “experiencing a shift toward preventive and work with other insurers in the future,


! E E FR

value-based care,” according to Stanford Medicine 2017 Health Trends Report. Urgent care services, specifically, are experiencing growth. There were 6,400 urgent cares in the U.S. in 2013 versus over 7,100 in 2017, according to a report from physician employment and consulting company Merritt Hawkins. The company leverages its dual roles as medical provider and technology platform to gather patient data in an attempt to increase the quality of care and reduce repeat visits for the same condition. It does this by checking in with patients three days after a visit and then checking with local health information exchange 14 and 30 days after care to determine whether the patient visited a hospital for that same complaint. Dispatch Health providers also have the ability to gather information on site that can contribute to patient illness or injury and share that information with primary-care providers and hospitals. The increased access to data in health care is a key factor allowing doctors to more effectively treat patients, according to the Stanford report. When sharing information, the company uses industry standard practices and has the proper HIPAA business associates agreements in place to ensure confidentiality, Riddleberger said. The service is open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. 365 days a year. – Reach Wayne Schutsky at 480-898-6533 or

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Clynes still spirited about their tequila line BY CHRISTINA FUOCO-KARASINSKI Staff

Founding Mexican Moonshine Tequila has been educational for Roger and Alisa Clyne. The Tempe couple learned, in particular, that the musician’s name wasn’t going to carry the brand. “Roger likes to call himself ‘The World’s Most Famous Unknown Band,’” she said about her husband who fronts Roger Clyne and the Peacemakers. “Roger has some notable fame in Arizona and a little in the United States. But his notoriety isn’t going to sell it. It comes down to whether it’s a good tequila or not.” Fans can make their own decision. Clyne will sign purchased bottles of Mexican Moonshine Tequila from 1 to 3 p.m. Sunday, Sept. 10, at Costco, 1445 W. Elliot Road, Tempe. For more information, call 480-496-6651. Mexican Moonshine Tequila was named after the Peacemakers’ song “Mexican Moonshine,” a double entendre about the country’s moon and the blue agave juice. The company’s three marques – Silver, Reposado and Añejo – are double-distilled and triple-filtered and harvested from the valleys of Jalisco, Mexico. The process makes the tequila extra smooth and removes the ingredients that give consumers hangovers. “Ours is a nice, clean, pure spirit,” she said. Silver is the pure agave essence with no wood barrel inclusion in the flavor profile. Reposado is aged for nine months in Kentucky bourbon barrels of American

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Musician Roger Clyne of the Pacemakers has started his own tequila, which is distilled in Mexico.

white oak, giving it buttery, oaky notes. Meanwhile, Añejo is aged for 18 months in Kentucky bourbon barrels of American white oak, lending smoky, tobacco and vanilla tones from the charred barrels. Arturo Fuentes, the master distiller, creates small batches of tequila at La Fabrica de Tequilas Finos in Tequila, Mexico. Alisa Clyne said her husband carefully walks the line between tequila brand owner and musician. Even though Roger is the face of the product, the entire band shares in its ownership. “You have to be delicate when you have commerce that’s following art,” she said. “His music is the most important thing.

That has to take the front seat over all of everything. He has to produce art that’s quality and what the fans love. He’s not writing new songs about tequila.” Mexican Moonshine Tequila was founded six years ago. Alisa Clyne, as well as the Peacemakers, bottled 1,000 units of the Reposado for Circus Mexicus, the band’s annual music festival in Rocky Point. “We sold out,” she said. “We thought we might have something here. It’s always important for Roger to make sure we have a great tequila. He didn’t just want to slap his name on something and make money.” Soon, they had Mexican Moonshine under their belt.

“One thing we love about the distillery is they were very conscientious about the ecosystem,” she said. “They took it a step further and they take leftover liquids and turn it back into drinkable water and compostable solids. The water goes back into the water table for Tequila, Mexico, residents and the solids go back out on the field for the next generation of agave.” Recently, the distillery installed solar panels, which impressed the Clynes. “Over 40 percent of electricity to run the distillery is solar power,” she said. “We’re hoping by 2017, the numbers will be higher.” Mexican Moonshine Tequila has been a hit. Alisa Clyne is adamant about attending festivals where she can offer tasting and pairings. It is also the official tequila of the Arizona Diamondbacks, for whom Roger Clyne penned its victory song, “D-backs Swing.” Words to the track have been painted on walls near the staff elevator on the upper concourse and by the Audi Quattro lounge. “That was a real delightful surprise,” she said. “The D-backs have been wonderful. Our first season was last year. They had a rough season, but a lot of people still went to the games.” There are 22 tap handles at Chase Field selling classic margaritas. Bars that can free pour serve blackberry margaritas. “The whole project has been challenging,” she said about Mexican Moonshine Tequila. “You have to be careful not to let it take over everything and dominate everything. But at the end of the day, it’s rock ‘n’ roll and tequila. It’s fun.”

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Restoration firm owner: Be wary of heat damage BY COLLEEN SPARKS

The old saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure” is especially true when it comes to protecting Valley homes from scorching temperatures and powerful monsoon storm. So says Adam Webster, CEO and president of Rocky Mountain Restoration, which serves customers mainly in Chandler and other parts of the East Valley. The Gilbert business restores commercial and residential buildings, including single-family homes and hospitals. Webster, of Mesa, said extreme heat and monsoons can damage roofs, cause exterior paint to crack and harm HVAC systems. “Make sure to keep up on maintenance on the home, and when there are issues… make sure to take care of them right away,” he said. “Failure to maintain and properly repair properties only increases costs and creates more problems. Prepare your home before the heat and monsoon hits to weather the storm.” Webster said the “summer heat can really take a toll” on roofs, adding the average life span of a shingle roof is about 20 years, but in the Valley it might be just 15 years. “The excessive heat causes the shingles (to) break down faster than in cooler climates,” Webster said, adding that shingle roofs in the Valley do not necessarily need to be replaced when they are 15 years old, but “it should be on the radar.” Webster said if people do not fix damaged roofs before monsoon storms soak

them, often their roofs will leak, “causing water damage to ceilings, walls and flooring.” Another common problem involves damaged or broken awnings, especially in manufactured home parks, he said. “If the awning is damaged by a storm, it is important to make the repairs before the next storm comes rolling through and further damages, or in some cases, completely rips off the awning, causing more property damage and posing a health and safety risk to neighbors,” Webster said. If a home or commercial building gets a leak in its roof, Rocky Mountain Restoration can remove moisture inside the structures. The goal is to “remove the moisture in order to “prevent any mold or bacteria growth in the affected areas,” Webster said. Besides protecting buildings from roof leaks, it’s important to keep air-conditioning systems in good condition, Webster said. “The HVAC system is working overtime, especially during the high temperature months,” he said. “Due to the demand placed on the unit during these months, there is an increased risk for mechanical failure on the unit. Most units have 10-year warranties; however, if maintained (they) can last much longer. “Another problem is condensation leaks from AC units,” Webster added. “This is when condensation builds up and then drips typically from the attic and damages the walls and ceilings below. This type of damage can be prevented by having a licensed HVAC company service the unit at least annually.”


The good news is many homes in Chandler are newer than houses elsewhere in the Valley, so they might not have as many structural problems from the heat and monsoons, he said. But homes that are 15 to 25 years old may need their roofs and HVAC systems to get replaced or serviced “very soon,” Webster added. “My suggestion would be that these property owners start preparing financially to make those upcoming repairs to their homes,” he said. Webster said replacing a shingle roof on a standard 1,500-square-foot house typically costs between $4,000 and $7,000. Painting the whole outside of a 1,500-squarefoot house with standard, two-tone exterior paint typically costs from $1,500 (Photos by Luke Stallings)/Special to SanTan Sun News to $1,800, he added. Replac- Adam Webster, CEO and president of Rocky Mountain Restoing a central air-conditioning ration, recommends people in the Valley maintain their roofs, unit inside a house that size HVAC systems and paint on their homes and businesses to precould range from $3,500 to vent damage from the extreme heat and monsoon storms. $8,000, depending on the and paint your home if the paint is fading unit, Webster said. and wearing thin in certain areas. Doing “Maintenance is the key to protecting these things can protect the property from your home and your wallet,” he said. “Have more severe issues in the future.” the HVAC serviced regularly, make sure the Information: roof is in good condition, repairs are made



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CHANDLER CHAMBER OF COMMERCE NEWS Content provided by the Chandler Chamber of Commerce

Michele Reagan to speak at public policy meeting BY PAULETTE PACIONI Guest Writer

The Chandler Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce Secretary of State Michele Reagan will be speaking at the September 22 Public Policy Series meeting. The event will take place from 8 to 9:30 a.m. at the Chamber, 25 S. Arizona Place. Reagan will be giving an update on voter registration and outreach and new efficiencies she has put in place. Arizona’s 20th secretary of state, Reagan has transformed an antiquated paper-based bureaucracy into an efficient digital state agency in less than three years. Her work to transform the Department of State has made it easier to start and run a business and she has improved public access to everything from political contributions

to genealogical records. Her efforts have earned her a leading role on the National Association of Secretaries of State (NASS) and that arm formed the Cybersecurity Task Force. Reagan also sits on the Executive Board of the National Lieutenant Governors Association. Before her election to the state’s second highest elective office, her experience running a small business led her to serve in the Arizona Legislature, where she was named chairwoman of the House Commerce Committee. Later she was selected to lead the Elections Committee in the Senate, where she fought to improve election integrity and ballot security. Register: -Paulette Pacioni is marketing and communications director for the Chandler Chamber of Commerce.

Chandler Chamber expands Business Development Department BY PAULETTE PACIONI Guest Writer

The Chandler Chamber of Commerce is proud to announce that Mala Hayes and Celeste O’Reilly have joined the Chamber’s Business Development Department. Hayes was born in London, England and grew up in New York City before her family relocated to Arizona. She has lived in the Valley of the Sun since 1990, attending Desert Mountain High School and studying psychology at Arizona State University. She spent four years in Waikiki, Hawaii, working in the membership department for the Hawaii Visitors & Convention Bureau. Her focus at the Chandler Chamber of Commerce includes public policy and business networking. O’Reilly moved to Phoenix in September of 1999 from Virginia and does NOT

miss the East Coast! She studied administration of justice at Virginia Commonwealth University, and has a background in law enforcement. She left public safety in 2003, after the birth of her son, and began a career in transportation and logistics. This led her into business development within the logistics vertical, where she spent 12 years. She enjoys engaging with businesses and is excited to be using her skills with the Chandler Chamber. “We are thrilled Mala, and Celeste have joined our team,” Chamber CEO/ President Terri Kimble said. “They are a welcome addition to our talented team and their experience and skill sets are sure to complement our Business Development Department.” -Paulette Pacioni is marketing and communications director for the Chandler Chamber of Commerce.

Women in Leadership to explore inclusion and diversity BY ALLYSON WITTEKIND Guest Writer

The Chandler Chamber Women in Leadership welcomes Angela Hughey of ONE Community as the keynote speaker on September 19 for its monthly luncheon. It will be held at SoHo 63 at 63 E. Boston Street in Chandler. Mentoring sessions start at 10:30 a.m. and the luncheon will begin at noon. Hughey is co-founder and president of ONE Community, which is a member-based coalition for socially responsible businesses, organizations, and individuals who support diversity, inclusion and equality for all Arizonans. In 2013, she and the ONE Community team launched the UNITY Pledges, which is a

concerted effort by Arizona businesses and individuals to advance workplace equality. Over 2,000 businesses and organizations and more than 10,000 Arizonans have taken the UNITY Pledge, which is reportedly the largest equality pledge in the country. The ability to build a thriving economy depends on the state’s ability to attract and retain top businesses. During Hughey’s presentation, attendees will hear why an inclusive Arizona is competitive and sustainable, and how people can get involved to create an Arizona that is welcoming and truly open for business to everyone. To register: Information: 480-963-4571. -Allyson Wittekind is a Chandler Chamber of Commerce intern.

Special to SanTan Sun News

Angela Hughey of ONE Community will be the keynote speaker on September 19 at SoHo 63 at the Chandler Chamber Women in Leadership monthly luncheon.

Special to SanTan Sun News

New employee Mala Hayes with the Chamber’s Business Development Department will focus on public policy and business networking.

Special to SanTan Sun News

Celeste O’Reilly has joined the Chandler Chamber of Commerce’s Business Development Department.

Erickson Companies helps ex-convicts re-enter workforce ALLYSON WITTEKIND Guest Writer

Since 1975, Erickson Companies has been a pioneer for the production and delivery of panelized framing systems. It is a leading provider of construction services and pre-fabricated building components. In addition, Erickson has a Door Sales & Installations (DSI) component in Chandler, which is gaining recognition for an innovative workforce program. Recently, it has developed a program for ex-convicts to re-enter the workforce. Erickson CEO Rich Gallagher feels there are many benefits to allowing former prison inmates to work for the company. “For our business, it helps address a widening gap in construction labor,” Gallagher said. “There are a fair number of individuals incarcerated today that have a background in carpentry, or a passion to learn the trade that are currently going untapped by us relying on traditional recruiting methods. Secondly, for those re-entering the workforce, it gives them a chance to hit the ground running. “From a corporate citizenship perspective, we can appreciate the difficulties that these folks may have trying to get that first job given the resume that they are bringing to the table,” he continued, adding: “If people much smarter than I have said those convicted of a crime have paid the price and have demonstrated behaviors to ready them for release, who are we to cast judgment otherwise? Lastly, from a community standpoint, we all have much to gain by helping these folks succeed and avoid going back to prison.” Gallagher added, “Arizona has a very high recidivism rate as compared to other states.” “This means that we are locking up a large amount of taxpayer dollars in continuing to house and feed those that can’t stay out of the system,” he said. “Just think about how that money could be repurposed towards education, healthcare, infrastructure, and so forth.” While many businesses might be skeptical about a program of this kind, Erickson

took on the challenge. “By nature I think there is a general sense of uneasiness when it comes to hiring ex-convicts,” Gallagher said. “As an employer, you certainly need to be diligent in understanding and vetting the backgrounds of those you employ as it relates to what role they are filling. After all angles are checked, then it’s all about looking forward and not backward. “All our employees are treated with the same level of respect, given the same chances for advancement, but also held to the same level of expectations,” he added. “If you have the right foundational work environment and culture, it’s much less concerning to mix in individuals with varying or checkered backgrounds and history. “We have to remember that the lion’s share of convicts were not put in prison for being bad workers, rather they made one or more bad decisions that altered their life path.” While in the program, participants learn new hands-on skill training as carpenters that enhances their experiences. He said Erickson has seen great success with its re-entry pipeline. “Essential to the success of this platform is the support of our builder customers and builders’ association. The Homebuilders Association of Central Arizona (HBACA) has been instrumental in opening new doors and ensuring alignment with respect to embracing new and innovative paths for solving the critical labor crunch. “Our company is deep with tenured and experienced leaders and front-line workers that take personal responsibility to on-boarding new employees and demonstrating the Erickson way with respect to safety, organization, quality, cadence, customer service and company culture,” Gallagher said. “They continue to be the reason for our ongoing successes and future growth.” Erickson has been a strong leader in its business and with its new re-entry program, paving a path for other companies to follow. Information: -Allyson Wittekind is a Chandler Chamber of Commerce intern.


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Chandler High football team takes national stage BY GREG MACAFEE Sports Editor

On Aug. 26, the No 8-ranked Chandler High Wolves took on No. 4-ranked IMG Academy in a nationally broadcast game on ESPNU. The game was also one of the most highly anticipated games in high school football. But, this isn’t the first time that the Wolves have played on a national stage. In fact, it has become something of a regularity in Arizona high school football. In the past, Chandler High has played in games against the best teams in the nation. Last season, the Wolves beat Valdosta High School from Georgia in the Geico State Champions Bowl Series. This came after they played Centennial High from Corona, California, in the first three weeks of the season. Before Centennial and Valdosta, the Wolves have played nationally ranked teams like Bishop Gorman from Las Vegas and St. John Bosco from California in past years. Bishop Gorman and St. John Bosco are ranked No. 1 and No. 4, respectively, in USA Today’s Super 25 rankings. Chandler head coach Shaun Aguano believes that playing against the top competition from around the country gives his team an idea of where they are on a national level. It said it also prepares them for the rest of the season. “The last five years, two of the five teams we’ve played out of state were national champions,” Aguano said. “So, we like playing big games, against huge opponents just to see where we are at nationally and then kind of evaluate where we are going through the season.” The seventh-year head coach at Chandler brought up the idea of playing on the national level when he took over the program. He thought it would give his players a big advantage in the big moments. “Prior to me coming on as a head coach, I thought Chandler had a kind of a mental block against the Hamiltons of the world. When taking on these national teams, I wanted to make sure our kids knew how to play in these big games.” So far, the strategy has worked out for Aguano and the Wolves as Chandler has captured two state championships since his arrival in 2011. Other teams have been known to take the same approach. During their run as state champions, the Hamilton Huskies played out of state on a yearly basis against top teams. Since 2013, the Mountain Pointe Pride have played four games against out-ofstate teams. Their only loss came in 2014 when they fell 66-13 to Reed High School in the Sollenberger Classic. They also

Photos special to the San Tan Sun News

Above: Linebacker Zach Bowers attempts to bring down IMG running back Noah Cain (22) during one of his two touchdown runs last Saturday night at Chandler High School. Right: Xavier Thomas (19), the No. 1-ranked recruit in the nation, gets around the edge as he tries to take down Jacob Conover (17) in the backfi eld. Below right: DeCarlos Brooks (25) tries to fend off IMG defenders during their matchup Saturday night at Chandler High School.

played Bishop Gorman. But since 2015, the Pride have taken their talents to California to compete in the UA Brothers in Arms Classic. They have won their last two matchups against California schools, Bakersfield and Upland. On Sept. 1, Mountain Pointe traveled to California for a third straight year to try and earn another win in the Golden State, taking on Chaminade High, a team that finished 8-4 last season. While the two teams are competing against top teams from around the country, they also don’t have to travel far to take on top talent. Chandler and Mountain Pointe are both ranked in the top 30 teams of USA Today’s Super 25 rankings, Chandler at No. 6 and Mountain Pointe at No. 29. Mountain Pointe and Chandler High are only separated by 12 miles, so they don’t have to travel far for a nationally ranked match up. The two teams will clash on Sept. 8 at Chandler High in a rematch of the 2016 6A state championship that ended in a 36-17 Chandler victory. – Contact Greg Macafee at gmacafee@ or at 480-898-5630 or follow @greg_macafee on Twitter.


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Survey: Brain studies Affect School Football BY GREG MACAFEE Sports Editor

The Barrow Neurological Institute released its newest findings on concussions in high school sports with a poll showing that onethird of parents around the Valley will not allow their kids to play football. The survey results stand consistent with the participation levels in football throughout Arizona. According to the National Federation of State High School Association, 17,858 athletes played high school football last year, a 15 percent decline from the previous season in which 20,929 played. While the participation rates show a decline, the survey also showed that 85 percent of parents in the Valley would still allow their kids to play other contact sports. Dr. Javier Cardenas, the director of the Barrow Concussion and Brain Injury Center at Barrow Neurological Institute, said that parents continue to view football as more dangerous than other contact sports. Cardenas serves on the NFL Head, Neck and Spine Committee as an unaffiliated neurotrauma consultant and sideline observer at Arizona Cardinals home games. He also serves as a sideline concussion observer at Arizona State University home games. Cardenas said there is no question that football is the spotlight sport for concussions. “In terms of CTE and the evaluation of deceased football players and recording this incidence,” Cardenas said. “That indeed has the greatest concern for the people who are participating in athletics.” Chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE) is a degenerative brain disease found in those

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Chandler high schools have no trouble attracting football players despite brain injury data.

with a history of repetitive brain trauma. In CTE, a protein called tau forms clumps that slowly spread, killing brain cells. Even though participation in football is declining, high school athletes continue to play because of the protections and policies being implemented to prevent concussions. Since 2011, the Barrow Neurological Institute and the Arizona Interscholastic Association have partnered up to provide concussion education to more than 350,000 Arizona high school athletes via Barrow’s Brainbook. The AIA also has been one of the nation’s leaders in implementing policies relating to the prevention of concussions. In 2011, the association developed a helmet dislodgement rule that was later adopted by the NFSH in 2012. The NFSH also adopted Arizona’s blindside block rule that the AIA

established in 2016. Even though parents know the risks that playing football brings, they still feel safe allowing their children to play because of the policies and precautions that are being implemented to make the game as safe as possible. Jodi Haire, the mother of Mountain Pointe High player Will Haire, said he loves playing football, so she would never pull him away from the sport. She said he has become smarter about playing football and preventing concussions because of the education he has received on brain injury. “He knows about the concussions. He always has, but he’s smart about it, or at least he’s much smarter now,” Haire said. “With the concussion testing in school and teaching them to be safer with their helmets. I tell him all the time if you feel something in the game,

like you have a concussion then you need to take yourself out.” David Campbell, a father from Sandra Day O’Connor, and his son play at the recreational level. Campbell said his son knows the risks, but if he wants to keep playing he is going to allow him to do so. He thinks it’s just about playing the game as safe as possible. “I’m sure parents will pull their kids out of [it],” Campbell said. “But, I think more than anything it’s just about being safer, you know learning how tackle correctly instead of bashing their helmets together like they’re used to.” Barrow has delivered more than 150,000 baseline concussion tests and 23,000 post injury concussion tests to Arizona high school athletes. Cardenas said Barrow Neurological Institute also estimated a total of $2 million in health care savings for Valley athletes. Arizona was also the second state in the nation to offer a concussion health insurance policy to all AIA athletes. The participation numbers for football in Arizona are declining, but according to the NFSH overall participation numbers for all sports throughout the United States increased for the 28th consecutive year. With the increase in numbers, Cardenas is set out to make every sport safe. “We continue to endorse participation in athletic activity and we continue to do our best to make it as safe as possible and work on prevention education and working on treatment to provide for the Arizona community,” Cardenas said. “Lastly, we continue to be leaders in this field and try to set an example for the nation.”




Despite heat, premium courses attract bargain-hunting golfers BY FAITH PHARES Cronkite News

With a floppy hat on her head and sunblock in hand, Viv Hynes prepares to play a round at the TPC Scottsdale golf club. It is above 100 degrees outside. “It’s mostly the prices,” she resident said. She’s not alone. With consistently nice weather and more than 300 courses – including ones that play host to PGA, LPGA and Champions Tour events – Arizona is a popular place for golfers in the winter. And the summer, too, for a hardcore subset who wants to play some of the country’s top courses at a highly discounted rate, even as temperatures hit triple digits. “Golf in Arizona in the winter can be very expensive, but if you’re willing to put up with the heat, you can get a good price, play quickly and have a good time,” Hynes said. The TPC Scottsdale, for example, hosts the most heavily attended tournament on the PGA Tour and was ranked one as of the top courses in Arizona by During non-summer months, rates can hit $300-plus for the well-manicured course. During the summer? Try one-third of that. “It’s more accessible to more people where you might not be able to, or want to, pay $339 to play in the month of March,” said Doug Hodge, the TPC Scottsdale’s assistant general manager. “Playing for $127 or $99 during the

summer months is a reality. … Golf courses are still in really good condition, service level is still the same, so we try to drive demand with a little bit lower price to get people out when it’s hot.” Starting in October, prices rise until December, when maintenance procedures are finished and the weather starts to cool down. From January through March, prices are still high, and golfers can find the best temperatures along with the highest prices as tourism is at its busiest. Typical prices at Scottsdale’s highly regarded Troon North, for example, are $259 in the winter and $69 in the summer. At the popular Boulders Golf Club in Carefree, common prices are $250 for the winter and $75 for the summer. Those who opt to play are reminded to proceed with caution. Arizona temperatures reached 119 degrees this summer. It could be worse. The Furnace Creek Golf Course in Death Valley, Calif., sits a quarter mile from the highest temperature ever recorded in the Western Hemisphere: 134 degree in 1913. Yet the course remains open in the summer and even has a tournament during that time called the Heatstroke Open. “That’s pretty much the goal out here,” Las Vegas resident Matt Muscari said. “Just make it through without passing out.” When golfers check in at Valley courses in the summer, they are often reminded of the importance of staying hydrated. Most courses have multiple water stations throughout. With temperatures reaching triple

Special to SanTan Sun News

San Marcos Golf Resort is among the courses drawing players despite the heat.

digits, the courses have had to make accommodations. “Some bring out these towels that are dipped in ice and usually some kind of flavoring. And then it drips down your neck and you scream like a little girl. … That’s nice,” Hynes said. Every staff member at the TPC Scottsdale and Arizona National Golf Club in Tucson are trained in First Aid and CPR in case of an emergency. While this is good news for the golfers, it is also important that they know how to stay hydrated and are aware of signs that indicate heat exhaustion or dehydration. Valley resident Robert Schlack plays often during the summer. He has a list of ideas, from experience, to stay cool in hot temperatures, including: Wear a hat with a large brim to shade head and ears and to avoid heat and skin cancer. Some hats can be cooled with water. Dress in light fabric materials such as cotton that are sun reflective in color. Soak a towel to wear around the neck and to pat head, hair, etc. If there is a beverage cart on the course, ask the workers to replenish beverage cups and coolers. “I bring a big glass of ice water,” Hynes said. “I drink a lot of water throughout the day. I wear a nice floppy hat that has shade.”

The Texas Heart Institute recommends drinking approximately five ounces of cool water for every 10 minutes of play and to stay away from juices and sodas. Starting early in the morning makes sense, too. Temperatures reach their peak in the mid- to late afternoon Another local golfer, Fritz Klink, said he survives by wearing “lighter clothing. And I bring extra waters and an apple.” Experts say stop playing if dizziness, blushing skin tone or headaches occur. “Your buddies should, and will, understand,” Schlack said. “If you notice any of these signs with your playing partner, make him/her aware and discuss a good solution to help them overcome the problem. “Have an emergency cell phone handy and a call number in case of a medical emergency. The course should be able to recommend the best contact for this.” Although some play golf in extreme heat conditions for the price, others play simply for the love of the game. “It’s TPC Scottsdale, Waste Management Phoenix Open. It’s prestigious I guess you could say… It’s always been a dream to play at some of these courses,” said Presley Wade, a visitor from Mississippi. “You play in all conditions, no matter what. Just play it as it lies.”

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7,000-seat GCU Arena,

student recreation center, Ethington Theatre, resort-style pools, contemporary housing and more Approximately

63% live on our

218-acre expanding campus


* Average tuition after scholarships is approximately $8,600. Scholarships may be awarded based on 6th semester transcripts. At the time in which final, official transcripts are received, GCU reserves the right to rescind or modify the scholarship if it is determined that eligibility was not achieved. GCU reserves the right to decline scholarship awards for any reason. If a student does not meet the minimum renewal criteria, their scholarship will be forfeited. GCU reserves the right to change scholarship awards at any time without notice. If a student does not meet the minimum renewal criteria, their scholarship will be forfeited. Prices based on 2016-17 rate and are subject to change. ** Housing and meal plan rate includes triple occupancy, suite-style residence hall and $1,350 Dining Dollars, plus applicable sales tax as required by state law. Prices reflect 2016-17 and are subject to change. The information printed in this material is accurate as of May 2017. For the most up-to-date information about admission requirements, tuition, scholarships and more, visit Important policy information is available in the University Policy Handbook at https://www. For more information about our graduation rates, the median debt of students who complete the program, and other important information, please visit our website at Please note, not all GCU programs are available in all states and in all learning modalities. Program availability is contingent on student enrollment. Grand Canyon University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (800-621-7440; GCU, while reserving its lawful rights in light of its Christian mission, is committed to maintaining an academic environment that is free from unlawful discrimination. Further detail on GCU’s Non-Discrimination policies can be found at ©2017 Grand Canyon University 17GTR0279





Club sports provide access to recruiters BY GREG MACAFEE Sports Editor

Every February, hundreds of teams and thousands of spectators from around the United States converge on the Reach 11 Sports Complex in North Phoenix to compete in one of the largest soccer tournaments in the country. With more than 400 teams, the President’s Day Tournament has established itself as one of the premier club soccer events in the nation, attracting college coaches and recruiters. “I have been down here every February for probably 15 years, probably even more than that, recruiting at that event,” said Grand Canyon University assistant men’s soccer coach Kevin Doyle, who recruited for Air Force, Virginia Tech and Creighton before coming to GCU. “We primarily focus our recruiting efforts on club events. It’s a lot more efficient. You have one of those events where there’s a couple hundred teams in town that are made up of good players,” Doyle said. Massive club tournaments in a variety of sports pit the top athletes against each other and draw top recruiters, but participation can cost families thousands of dollars a year, potentially putting the important pathway to a college scholarship out of reach of those who cannot afford the fees and travel expenses. Gilbert High School twins Danny and Robby Baca have played for Phoenix soccer club Sereno for the past seven years. In February, the two brothers

signed to play soccer at Fort Lewis College in Colorado. Danny said he received a lot of scholarship offers from Division I colleges and doesn’t think he would have if he didn’t play club soccer. “Most of my looks and offers came from club,” Danny said. “It is a very good way of showcasing yourself in front of these coaches while they are there, so I believe that it is very beneficial.” Their father, Pat, said the family paid about $6,000 per year in fees and travel expenses. They made multiple trips to Dallas, Denver, Southern California and Las Vegas. In the end, Baca said it paid off for his twins. “We feel the expense is just a temporary thing and since we’ve got it, we might as well share the wealth when we can,” Baca said. “Were there sacrifices on our end? Certainly. Did we forego certain things or vacations because of club soccer? Absolutely. But, those tournaments became our vacations.” The Bacas were able to afford the club and tournament fees and often helped other players on the team when their parents could not afford to travel. That’s not always the case for players who can’t afford to play club soccer, but many clubs do offer scholarship opportunities. “What we do probably more than anyone else is we break it down to the team,” said Sereno executive and technical director Brent Erwin of their scholarship program. “We break it down so that each team is able to provide opportunities for kids. “Sometimes you picture financial as being a downtrodden, but everyone

Special to SanTan Sun News

The Arizona Gremlins Basketball Club in Chandler is quickly becoming recognized as a unique and enriching experience for young area athletes.

goes through challenges. Everyone goes through good times and bad times. So we try to be there and be flexible and be able to help people when they need it.” Sereno is affiliated with the Major League Soccer team Real Salt Lake and on occasion receives help from the organization. In the past year, Erwin said that Sereno has spent more than $50,000 in scholarship money. They are not the only club to follow this philosophy. SC del Sol executive director Mark Lowe said the club’s scholarship fund totaled $140,000 in the past year and is awarded based on need, not just ability. Other clubs offer different options to make sure money isn’t a problem as well. Chicago-based F.C. United travels more than 1,700 miles every year to compete in the President’s Day Tournament. Senior boys director Baer Fischer estimated that

the cost was $600-$700 per player for travel costs, accommodations and the tournament fee. “We make sure that every player is included,” Fischer said. “When you join our club there is other avenues you can take if you can’t afford it. Players can fundraise, they can work it off at the club, there’s opportunities to ref for the younger teams games or helping out at the indoor facilities. We always find a way to make sure every player attends.” Playing club soccer doesn’t guarantee that athletes are going to be able play at the next level, but it does increase a player’s chance of doing so. According to, 86 percent of student-athletes played club soccer before moving on to the collegiate level. That percentage of participation in club sports was consistent across sports with a large club scene.

Is it too early for braces?


From Dr. Chamberlain’s Desktop


n my Orthodontic practice, many parents have commented that they noticed the average age of children getting braces has decreased. Dr. Thomas This is true. The timChamberlain ing of treatment has changed. This has to do with the changing role orthodontics has taken in the whole health perspective of the growing child. In the past, orthodontics could be related to a car body-shop mechanic. The crash has happened and the orthodontist would come in to put the car (or teeth) together as best as possible. With the newer technology that I will be writing about later, we have moved from a mechanic to more of a crash detector to warn

and prevent the crash from happening. Listen, if we can prevent canines from being impacted with early intervention (and we can), then that prevents future surgical interventions. If we can develop arches early, then we can have full eruption of teeth and prevent the extraction of permanent teeth in the future. If we can prevent sleep interrupted breathing and possibly sleep apnea, then we may prevent adverse issues ranging from child snoring to bedwetting, to moodiness and poor school performance. There are just too many benefits to ignore early treatment and prevent certain

Dr. Thomas Chamberlain

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November September 5 - 18, 2–15, 2016 2017

“An award winning publication”

SanTan Sun News


Hoops program offers life lessons BY COLLEEN SPARKS Staff


Summer 2017

In a quiet Chandler park on a recent weeknight, children were burning up a basketball court, dribbling, shooting, passing and running laps with intent expressions on their sweating faces. The nine boys and one girl were focused on their coach Alcurtis Turner, a former semi-professional basketball player and founder of the KBA (Kids Basketball Association). They followed his commands without interrupting, complaining or goofing around. Even after practice ended, several players kept hustling on the court. It’s easy to find basketball programs in Chandler and other parts of the East Valley, but what’s unusual about the KBA is its free three-week training camp on an outdoor court. Youngsters in grades kindergarten through eighth learn the fundamentals of the sport and life skills in the organization’s D-League before joining more competitive teams through the KBA, their schools or other organizations, if they choose. The “D” stands for “developmental” and players learn the rules of the basketball court and basic skills including shooting, passing, dribbling, footwork and fitness. The boys and girls in the KBA training camp also get a lesson in giving back. They perform community service such as handing out water bottles and clothes to homeless people in Phoenix and cleaning up litter in downtown Chandler. “It’s about teaching the kids the right way and making sure that they improve,” said Turner, a Chandler resident. “You learn all the fundamentals, but you also learn how to be an athlete. It’s about mixing basketball and life lessons together.” He provides three weeks for free to youths in the D-League. If the children want to continue after the complimentary sessions, it costs $125 for 12 weeks, with four days of practice a week in the D-League. Community service is also part of the program. Turner started the KBA about five years ago, but this summer is the first time he has offered the free training camp. The young players in the free training camp practice for an hour Tuesday nights at Arbuckle Park, on South Norman Way.

Photos by Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Alcurtis Turner teaches, from left, sons Austin and Arian along with Omari Kallian.

They also do conditioning work for an hour every Saturday morning at Hamilton High School’s track, running and focusing on footwork, speed and agility. Turner said the group will also

giving back to the community, as well as the importance of hard work, discipline, respect and other values to help them thrive in life. “Not every kid is going to be a

teaching the kids the right way and “ It’s about making sure that they improve.”

– Alcurtis Turner founder, the KBA

practice at Folley Memorial Park on East Frye Road in the future on Saturdays when they are not at Hamilton. Once enrollment is high enough, the D-League players will play scrimmages. A former point guard and shooting guard, Turner played for the American Basketball Association’s Phoenix Fury and Arizona Rhinos teams in 2009 and 2008 respectively. The father of five said kids in the training camp learn about sharing and

What’s inside Page 2,3 Santan Family Fun Calendar

Alcurtis Turner wants his Kids Basketball Association to teach children character and the game.

professional basketball player,” Turner said. “It teaches them how to be good American citizens.” About 12 to 15 youths, mostly boys and a few girls, usually show up for the free outdoor camp led by Turner. Besides coaching and playing for the Arizona teams, Turner used to play streetball in 2006 as part of the “AND1 Mixtape Tour,” a traveling basketball competition and exhibition TV show on ESPN’s “SportsCenter.” He says playing outdoors helps players to get better at their game. Though he’s not playing in front of large crowds or on TV any longer, Turner still had plenty of fans at the training camp recently. “I am very impressed with the program,” said Dara Gibson, a Chandler parent whose son, Garrett, 12, attends the camp. “I feel that Alcurtis Turner has really developed something that can be a very successful program.” Gibson said the program helps kids to “not just gain dribbling or running” skills but also to “develop the whole person.” “I am grateful for this opportunity for Garrett,” she said. “We had been with various other programs. We felt we had outgrown our last one and needed more of a challenge.” Garrett, a seventh-grader at Bogle See



September November 5 2–15, - 18, 2017 2016


Always call to verify information as some events change or cancel after the calendar is printed. Send family events and activities to



Get Animated! Phoenix Mercury vs. Atlanta Dream


Get Animated! Tumbleweed Tots

10Marvel Universe Live!:

11 Tumbleweed Tots

17 Get Animated!

18 Tumbleweed Tots

Age of Heroes Diamondbacks vs. San Diego Padres


Diamondbacks vs. San Diego Padres

25Tumbleweed Tots





Tumbleweed Tots Family Storytime Lego Club STEAM Club Toddlertime Tumbleweed Tots Lego Club STEAM Club Family Storytime Toddlertime Diamondbacks vs. Houston Astros

Tumbleweed Tots Family Storytime Lego Club Toddlertime

Tumbleweed Tots Family Storytime Lego Club Toddlertime

6 Tumbleweed Tots


Lapsit Babytime

13 Tumbleweed Tots

Lapsit Babytime


Tumbleweed Tots Lapsit Babytime

Tumbleweed Tots Lego Club STEAM Club Toddlertime

14 Tumbleweed Tots



ImprovMANIA Tumbleweed Tots Marvel Universe Live!: Age of Heroes


Lego Club STEAM Club Toddlertime

Lapsit Babytime

20 Tumbleweed Tots


21 Tumbleweed Tots

22 ImprovMANIA

Tumbleweed Tots Lego Club STEAM Club Toddlertime


ImprovMANIA Marvel Universe Live!: Age of Heroes

16 ImprovMANIA Read to a Dog

23 ImprovMANIA

Tumbleweed Tots

STEAM Club Toddlertime


ImprovMANIA Tumbleweed Tots STEAM Club Rhythm and Rhyme

Get Animated! ImprovMANIA


ImprovMANIA Tumbleweed Tots A Taste of Greece Festival

Read to a Dog


ImprovMANIA A Taste of Greece Festival



BASKETBALL from page 1 Junior High, has been playing basketball since he was 6. He’s planning to try out for the school’s basketball team. “I think it’s pretty fun and it’s getting me in pretty good shape for my junior high team,” Garrett said. “It’s improving my dribbling skills a lot. The coach is a really good coach.” Jacques Jones, 12, an Ahwatukee eighth-grader at Kyrene Middle School in Tempe, is also enjoying the training. “It’s fun, a learning experience,” Jones said, adding Turner has helped him to “improve my jumper, my layups and my dribbling.” “He’s very knowledgeable,” Jones said. “He knows his basketball.” Jacques’ father, Christopher, said he and Jacques met Turner for the first time at an L.A. Fitness, where they were on the basketball court. Turner started playing with Jacques at the health club and Christopher has been impressed with the coach. “He’s very thorough and he’s doing it from a good place to help the kids,” Christopher said. “He made it clear; it’s not about making money. I like how they teach discipline.” Julie Alley of Gilbert brought her daughter Lily, 10, to participate in the camp for the first time recently. It was Lily’s first time in a basketball program and Julie likes the teamwork aspect of it. “It’s a great way to try it,” Julie said. “It’s competitive, it’s team-driven. It’s all about sharing the play rather than hogging the

Turner teaches Omari Kalian how to dribble correctly.

Garrett Gibson practices his dribbling during a session with KBA in Chandler.

play.” Raffi Kalian of Gilbert said he likes how children learn important skills like ball control and how the rims are not lowered, as they are in some kids’ programs. He said his son, Omari, 6, a first-grader at Chandler Traditional Academy-Independence, has been playing basketball since he could walk and their goal is to “shoot for the pros.” “I love it,” Raffi said. “(Turner’s) like a dream come true. He’s very firm, but at

the same time he’s understanding and compassionate with the kids.” The KBA also offers a competitive Amateur Athletic Union (AAU) team, Desert Cactus, which competes in the Valley and out-of-state. It costs $75 a month, and parents also must pay about $250 for their children’s backpack, jersey, customized socks and warm-up shirts. Parents are also responsible for paying for their children’s travel costs to tournaments.

Youths who want some extra help upping their game can get private, one-onone training from Turner through the KBA for $50 an hour. During schools’ fall break, he also plans to lead a basketball camp for five days in Gilbert for about $60. Prices for other youth basketball leagues in the Valley vary, with a competitive one charging $280 a month and a city program charging $70 for about two months of play. Information:

November September 5 - 18, 2–15, 2016 2017

CALENDAR from page 2 2, 3, 4 Get Animated!, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. The Arizona Science Center’s newest exhibit allows guests to take a behind-the-scenes look at animation. They will have the opportunity to create a storyboard and make a stop-motion animated movie. The exhibit is produced by Stage Nine Exhibitions, with the support of Warner Bros. and Aardman Animations. Arizona Science Center, 600 E. Washington Street, Phoenix, general admission price plus $5.95 to $7.95, 602-716-2000, 2, 8, 9, 15, 16, 22, 23, 29, 30 ImprovMANIA, 7 p.m. Join ImprovMANIA Friday and Saturday nights for a familyfriendly comedy show. ImprovMANIA’s improv comedy shows are fast-paced and made up on the spot based on audience suggestions, like on the show “Whose Line Is It Anyway?” Prepare for a night of laughter in downtown Chandler. ImprovMANIA, 250 S. Arizona Avenue, Chandler, $10, 480-699-4598, 3 Phoenix Mercury vs. Atlanta Dream, 6 p.m. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson Street, Phoenix, $27.26, 602-379-2000, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29 Tumbleweed Tots, 12:30 p.m. Monday, Wednesday and Friday and 9 a.m. Tuesday and Thursday. This indoor play area is designed for children age 5 and younger to have fun under parental/guardian supervision. This fun, safe and clean area will have plenty of toys, equipment and activities that are sure to keep the kids entertained. There is a maximum of four children per adult. Tumbleweed Recreation Center, 745 E. Germann Road, Chandler, $2 to $3, 480-7822900, 5, 12, 19, 26 Family Storytime, 6:30 to 7:30 p.m. Read books, sing songs and play with puppets at Family Storytime. This week, families will build forts, select a couple of books and read. Materials to build the forts will be provided. Sunset Library Monsoon Room, 4930 W. Ray Road, Chandler, free. 480-782-2800, 5, 12, 19, 26 Lego Club, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Come meet

new friends and have fun building. Legos are supplied, imagination required. No registration required. Lego Club is a Vertex program, where Chandler Public Library intersects with STEAM and makerspace. Sunset Library Monsoon Room, 4930 W. Ray Road, Chandler, free, 480-782-2800, 5, 12, 19, 26 STEAM Club, 4 to 5 p.m. Come to the Chandler Library STEAM Club and have fun every Tuesday with science, technology, engineering, art and math. Play games, dig up dinos, participate in weird science, and make fun crafts, Lego cars and more. Win prizes just for showing up. Ages 6-11. STEAM Club is a Vertex program, where Chandler Public Library intersects with STEAM and makerspace. Downtown Library Copper Room, 22 S. Delaware Street, Chandler, free, 480-7822800, 5, 12, 19, 26 Toddlertime, 10:15 a.m. Toddlers are welcome to morning storytime at the library. There will also be singing and puppets to engage the children during this 30-minute program. Sunset Library Monsoon Room, 4930 W. Ray Road, Chandler, free, 480-782-2800, 6, 13, 20, 27 Lapsit Babytime, 11 to 11:30 a.m. Read books, listen to music and interact with fun puppets at play time. All activities are designed for newborns to 18-month-old children. One parent for each child is highly recommended. Downtown Library Copper Room North, 22 S. Delaware Street, Chandler, free, 480-7822800, 7, 14, 21, 28 Lego Club, 3:30 to 4:30 p.m. Come meet new friends and have fun building with Lego. No registration required. Lego Club is a Vertex program, where Chandler Public Library intersects with STEAM and makerspace. Downtown Library Copper Room North, 22 S. Delaware Street, Chandler, free, 480-7822800, 7, 14, 21, 28 STEAM Club, 4 to 5 p.m. Come to the Chandler Library STEAM Club and have fun every Tuesday with science, technology, engineering, art and math. Activities include games, dinosaurs, weird science, crafts and Lego cars. Win prizes just for showing up. Ages 6-11. STEAM Club is a Vertex program, where Chandler Public Library meets STEAM

and makerspace. Sunset Library Monsoon Room, 4930 W. Ray Road, Chandler, free, 480-782-2800, 7, 14, 21, 28 Toddlertime, 9:10 a.m. Toddlers are welcome to enjoy morning storytime at the library. There will also be singing and puppets to engage the children during the 30-minute program. Downtown Library, 22 S. Delaware Street, Chandler, free, 480-782-2800, 8, 9, 10 Marvel Universe Live!: Age of Heroes, various times. Join forces with more than 25 Marvel characters to complete one epic quest. Characters such as SpiderMan, Doctor Strange, the Guardians of the Galaxy and the Avengers team up to find the Wand of Watoomb before Loki finds it. The journey is filled with fast-paced action scenes with many special effects including pyrotechnics. This show is designed for audiences of all ages. Talking Stick Resort Arena, 201 E. Jefferson Street, Phoenix, $15 to $90, 602-379-7833, 10 Diamondbacks vs. San Diego Padres, 1:10 p.m. Watch the Arizona Diamondbacks take on the San Diego Padres at Chase Field. Celebrate Grandparents Day with a special photo taken with a ticket pack. Use code GRAND to receive the offer. Chase Field, 401 E. Jefferson Street, Phoenix, $7 to $180, 602-462-6500, arizona. 15 Rhythm and Rhyme, 11 to 11:30 a.m. Young children are welcome to join in a musical celebration at the library. During the event, they can sing and dance, as well as play instruments. Hamilton Library, 3700 S. Arizona Avenue, Chandler, free, 480-782-2800, 16 Rockin’ Taco Street Fest, noon to 9 p.m. Tacos of every kind, from chicken to carnitas, will be served by more than 24 restaurants. Other activities include a lowrider car show, extreme midget wrestling and mariachi bands. Food lovers can participate in the salsa or taco-eating competition. For children, there will be a niños play zone and piñata party. Downtown Chandler Stage Plaza, 178 E. Commonwealth Avenue, Chandler, $8 to $75, 602-276-2499,


16 The Constitution Fair, 5 to 9:30 p.m. Come learn about the U.S. Constitution while celebrating America’s patriotic spirit. Visitors can meet founding fathers like Benjamin Franklin and George Washington. In addition, there will be Revolutionary War reenactments, a fallen soldier memorial, vendor booths, live entertainment and food trucks. Children enjoy the bounce houses, climbing walls and arts and crafts. The evening will end with Gilbert’s largest fireworks show. Gilbert Civic Center, 50 E. Civic Center Drive, Gilbert, $4 to $15, 17 Paw Patrol Live!: Race to the Rescue, 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. Clap, sing and dance along with the characters from “Paw Patrol” in this live show. Purchase the Very Important Pup package to meet Ryder and other characters. This show is designed for children ages 1 to 6. Comerica Theatre, 400 W. Washington Street, Phoenix, $17 to $74, 602-379-2800, 23 Read to a Dog, 10 to 11 a.m. Children of all ages can practice their reading skills with a furry friend – a certified therapy dog. Downtown Library Copper Room, 22 S. Delaware Street, Chandler, free, 480-7822800, 24 Diamondbacks vs. Miami Marlins, 1:10 p.m. Watch the Arizona Diamondbacks take on the Miami Marlins at Chase Field. Military and first responders receive half off tickets to this game when purchased online with a valid account. Chase Field, 401 E. Jefferson Street, Phoenix, $7 to $180, 602-462-6500, arizona. 29, 30 A Taste of Greece Festival, 5 to 10 p.m. Friday, and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Saturday. Celebrate Greek culture at St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church. There will be plenty of traditional Greek food from savory dolmathes to sweet and airy loukoumathes. Greek folk dancers will perform throughout the weekend. Vendors will be selling a variety of goods such as jewelry, crafts and other Greek imports in the “agora” market. St. Katherine Greek Orthodox Church, 2716 N. Dobson Road, $3, 480-899-3330,

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September November 5 2–15, - 18, 2017 2016 Mayor Jay Tibshraeny and the Chandler City Council

FALL into FUN with

CHANDLER PARKS & RECREATION! Just because summer is over, it doesn’t mean the fun has to stop! Whether you take the lead with our Leaders In Training teens, stretch your wings at the annual Dragonfly & Butterfly Bash or blaze your own trail with our Green Teen Corps, Chandler Parks & Recreation offers a variety of ways for your to fall into fun. For a complete listing of upcoming activities or for more information on programs highlighted below pick up Break Time magazine at Chandler facilities, visit

visit or call 480-782-2727.


WED., SEPT 6 5:30–7 p.m.

TUMBLEWEED RECREATION CENTER They’re colorful, they’ve got crazy hair, and they love singing, dancing, hugging, and cupcakes. Yep, everything about Trolls sounds like a party to us! From tie-dye to glitter families can enjoy imaginative crafts and games.




Follow the leader and turn fall break downtime into leadership opportunities with Chandler’s awardwinning Leaders In Training (L.I.T.) program. Teens between the ages of 14 and 17 can gain valuable work experience as an L.I.T. Over the course of two weeks, young adults participant in a series of leadership development workshops, and are guided by an esteemed mentor and shown tools for success in both the private and civic sectors. Application deadline is September 15. For more information, please call Trevor Groth at 480-782-2730 or email



SAT., SEPT 23 9 a.m.–Noon



Is your budding baker sugar crazed for cupcakes? Then, this is one delicious Family Night you don’t wanna miss. Mix it up and join us for cupcake decorating and frosted crafts. It’s an evening sure to satisfy everyone’s sweet tooth.

For more information, visit




It’s time to stretch your wings at the Environmental Education Center’s annual Dragonfly & Butterfly Bash. Be a social butterfly and flutter over to the EEC Saturday, September 23 from 9 a.m. to noon for a fun-filled morning amongst hundreds of free-flying insects. Enjoy guided nature walks, hands -on crafts, presentations and more. Walks are approximately 20-mintues in duration over easy terrain. For more information, visit Green Teens Corps provides eco-conscious greenagers with outside jobs, inside community. Corps members volunteer at various times throughout the year alongside environmental stewards, assisting with:



School just started, but before you know it your kids will be home for fall break. Chandler Parks & Recreation offers students, ages 5 to 13, an opportunity to break away and enjoy well-deserved vacation activities over fall. From art and sports to nature and science, you’re sure to find something exciting for every child in your family. Flexible options include your choice of all day, half day and specific weeks. For more information, please visit

Garden and Trail Maintenance | Education Outdoor Adventures | Special Events and Projects Expand your knowledge, enjoy being active and know you are making a real difference in your community. Volunteers must be between 13 and 17 years of age. For more information, please contact Dexter Belling at (480) 782-2895 or email

Stay connected with us! Follow us on Twitter and Instagram @ChandlerRec

Find us on Facebook and YouTube Chandler Recreation

November September 5 - 18, 2–15, 2016 2017



September November 5 2–15, - 18, 2017 2016





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September November 5 2–15, - 18, 2017 2016




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Taking a tiny step toward meeting a massive need BY PAUL MARYNIAK Executive Editor

It has been at least a decade, if not longer, that I’ve handled occasional stories about a Christian organization called Feed My Starving Children. Between the organization’s own announcements and news releases from groups that have helped further its mission, I’ve always been impressed not only by the zeal of FMSC but by its seeming efficiency. Last week, I experienced both firsthand. I felt like I was part of a Swiss watch. Joining my colleagues from Times Media Group, publishers of San Tan Sun News and about 20 other community newspapers and magazines, I learned why so many individuals and organizations – from scout troops to church groups – so enthusiastically embrace FMSC. It’s not only because Feed My Starving Children for 30 years has been fixed on one goal: easing the hunger that afflicts untold millions of kids around the world. It needs people to physically help do it. FMSC has perfected a recipe of four high-protein ingredients that volunteers assemble into life-saving bags. Volunteers measure the ingredients for each bag, seal the bags, pack the bags in boxes and tape up and stack the boxes on pallets that end up in dozens of poverty-stricken countries around the world. Located in a small, empty shopping center across from Fiesta Mall in Mesa, FMSC’s packing center for the East Valley has a “kitchen” that probably is cleaner than many Valley restaurants. Its approach to handling those bags of life certainly seem a lot more sterile than the food-handling techniques I’ve seen in others. Donning hairnets and latex gloves and guided crisply by the directions of a tiny staff, dozens of volunteers form mini-assembly lines that engender a camaraderie and proficiency that become a marvel to behold –

Pedro Pablo Pirella/San Tan Sun News Staff

Times Media Group employees fi ll bags of food at Feed My Starving Children’s packing center in Mesa.

and even more marvelous to be a part of. Before and after a packing session, you not only get schooled in the suffering that you are joining FMSC to help alleviate. You also get to check out and buy crafts and products from the countries you are helping – coffee from Nicaragua and Haiti, bracelets from Uganda, beaded toys from Swaziland, to name just a few. Volunteers also get an introduction to the vast global network through which FMSC distributes those bags of life and the other ways it helps rescue at least some of the suffering little ones. During a brief video following our 90-minute packing stint, we heard the story of a 4-year-old Haitian boy whose mother could not care for him while tending to his three siblings. He had rickets and couldn’t walk. So, day after day, she just left him sitting outside

in the mud under the hot sun with no one to even talk to, let alone play with. He came to the attention of FMSC volunteers, who took him to a doctor. The doctors didn’t think he would make it, had all but given him up for the grave. Flash forward two years. The boy was in a classroom, writing on a blackboard, running around and looking healthy. After watching that video, I thought about the little boys and girls in dirt-poor regions of the globe who can’t run to the fridge for a glass of milk, sit down at breakfast to a bowl of Cheerios or run over to a cupboard for a snack. I thought about how our company took two hours of its time away from covering news and serving advertisers to join the finely tuned watch that is Feed My Starving Children to show those kids a little love –

indeed, give them life. I wondered what would happen if every business in Ahwatukee, the East Valley, the Phoenix metro region organized its employees into groups that could head over to Mesa and spend two hours packing bags of food. For a mere two hours, business owners, supervisors and employees could join the countless church groups, civic organizations and individuals who have done the same thing and help the millions of children among the estimated 161 million people in the world who are starving every day. We were told that by the end of our shift, we helped feed 69 children for a year. Seemed to me like a heartbreakingly tiny fraction of the need out there. Maybe it’s time that you head over to and sign up.

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Current Chase Field deal is good for Maricopa County taxpayers BY DENNY BARNEY Guest Writer

As the legal process plays out in the lawsuit the Arizona Diamondbacks have filed against the Maricopa County Stadium District, I’d like to take a minute to address some of the facts of the case, which can get muddied by well-intending people on both sides. Let’s start with the oft-cited “$180 million” number from the 2013 facility assessment study. In many respects, this is a wish list of possible improvements at Chase Field over the life of the contract. As a wish list, it includes both necessary capital repairs as well as discretionary upgrades. Under the contracts, the team is not entitled to anything it wants.

Many things on that list are just suggestions to be done at the end of the current term, on the assumption the stadium remains a ball field. For example, one of the items on the wish list is a new Jumbotron in 2027. I’ve heard some talk that because the study is over four years old, the list of needed repairs has probably grown. Actually, the opposite is true, because capital repairs are made every year. The Stadium District has spent nearly $50 million on capital repairs and additional amenities requested specifically by the team. The reserve fund will have enough money to cover all capital repair projects, so long as the Diamondbacks keep paying the same rent. Another issue involves money from nonbaseball events. The team has argued that the Stadium

District does not make enough money from those events and, therefore, does not have enough money to pay for needed repairs. This is not true. Revenue from outside events was never intended to be the primary source of funding for capital repairs. The Diamondbacks were originally the booking agent of non-baseball events at Chase Field but had limited success and turned over booking management rights to the county. The county has done far better. Recently, it has been suggested that supervisors allow the team to explore other stadium options as long as those options are within Maricopa County. Here is the reality: There are no public funds going into the stadium today, nor is there authority to collect additional taxes. The current deal protects taxpayers. The Diamondbacks signed

a 30-year agreement that runs until 2028. In 2024, the team could begin looking for another place to play. If the team were to leave early, we would have an empty stadium. Leaving a hole in the ground in the middle of downtown Phoenix is not good for anyone. The bottom line: Taxpayers do not spend anything to maintain Chase Field, and it is and will continue to be well maintained. New stadiums are extremely expensive. The new one in Arlington, Texas, is expected to cost more than $1 billion – and public appetite for the bonds that fund them may be lower than Congress’ approval rating. The current arrangement was designed to protect taxpayers, and your board members will continue to be good stewards of Chase Field. -Denny Barney is chairman of the Maricopa County Board of Supervisors

Confederate memorials should remain – but only in museums BY DAVID LEIBOWITZ Tribune Columnist

The first time someone ever mailed me a swastika was back in my New Jersey days, when I made a full-time living peddling opinions in newsprint. Some members of the Aryan Nation announced an upcoming rally to protest gay rights and, to honor the event, I explained that Neo-Nazism seemed to me like a disease begging to be cured at the business end of a Louisville Slugger. We didn’t have email back then, which was a blessing, because people who hated you had to draw memes by hand and spend 40-some cents on postage. The mail was more of an event then, full of misspelled vitriol and chickenscratch hate. Rest assured, when your last name is Leibowitz and you anger the Hitler Youth, you will see swastikas. The ugly symbol never made much of an impression on me. I used to tell myself

it was a German mark denoting idiocy – an emblem that said more about the drawer’s lack of intellect than anything about the viewing audience. Easy for me to say, I see now. Because the hateful images people mailed – the swastikas, the cut-out pictures of old Adolf, the slurs – were not commissioned as statues displayed on public grounds. I did not have to walk past, say, the Nazi equivalent of the memorial to Confederate soldiers that sits across the street from the Arizona state Capitol. Nor have I ever had to drive on a public highway named after the Third Reich equivalent of Jefferson Davis, the president of the Confederacy who has been honored with a stretch of the U.S. 60 southeast of Apache Junction. That’s why I support the idea of banishing these Civil War memorials to a museum, and erasing Jefferson Davis Highway and also Robert E. Lee Street, which cuts east-west across north Phoenix and Scottsdale above Bell Road.

You say, “Gosh, people are way too sensitive these days. It’s just a statue, just a street name, just a reminder of America’s history.” I say, “To you maybe. But to other people, these things are scars, reminders of wounds so deep they still ache generations later.” Let me be as clear as I know how to be. General Lee and those Confederate soldiers we’re honoring took up arms against this nation in the support of slavery and secession. They were not heroes. They were traitors. Slavers. They killed Union soldiers – Americans. In a few weeks, when our country pauses on September 11 to honor and recall the civilians, firefighters and police officers murdered in cold blood on that awful day in 2001, we won’t also offer a few kind words and prayers for the 19 murderers who brought the terror. To do so would be unseemly, unpatriotic, un-American. Not unlike, say, flying the Rebel flag over the state Capitol – an event that

actually happened in 1961, to mark the 100-year anniversary of the Civil War. That was also the year the Confederate memorial was erected in Wesley Bolin Plaza. We’re a different Arizona today than we were almost a half century ago – though perhaps not yet different enough when it comes to the issue of race. You say, well, they’re only statues, markers, streets names. Great. If they’re “only” meaningless words and objects, then let’s remove them. Most of us will never notice the difference. And most of those who do notice will fall into one of two categories: People who see these memorials as hurtful, unnecessary celebrations of America’s ugliest legacy. Or idiots who think General Lee, Jefferson Davis and those Confederate war dead were a bunch of great guys. So, friend, which are you? – David Leibowitz has called the Valley home since 1995. Contact david@

The power of mindset can keep students from ‘checking out’ BY MIKE SISSEL Guest Writer

Pencils sharpened. Check! Backpack organized. Check! Lunch made. Check! Mindset prepared. Huh? Over the last few weeks, kids of all ages jumped (or rolled) out of bed prepared (or not) for the first day of school. With this annual event comes a wide range of emotions. Whether it’s the fear of forgetting a locker combination or a general apprehension about a new curriculum, this time of year can be challenging for many. Thankfully, many of these back-toschool fears subside during the first few weeks as teachers work to develop a safe classroom culture. The daily routine eventually becomes part of a new normal, and before long, the early fears and worries are nothing but a distant memory. It’s during this new normal that mindset becomes more important than ever. While the early fears may be absent, they are often replaced with a brand new set of emotions, including boredom,

frustration or discontent. These new emotions, left unmanaged, often lead to a lack of engagement or occasions of kids simply checking out. Here’s where the power of mindset comes in. While students often point the finger of disengagement in the direction of someone or something else (i.e., teacher or homework), a shift in mindset ultimately places responsibility in the hands of students. This is the essence of personal responsibility. Below are three of the most common student mindsets that lead to disengagement. In addition, I’ve provided a new mindset that will likely lead to more engagement. Disengaging: My teacher is so boring. Whether it’s a monotone delivery or a lack of positive energy, kids will often find evidence to prove that boredom is real. I truly believe that boredom is a function of the mind. In other words, you can’t find boredom out there. What may be boring to one may be interesting to another. Having said this, I invite kids to shift their mindset away from what the teacher is saying or doing and focus more on what the learner is saying or doing. At a fundamental level, the teacher is simply

teaching. A student’s job is not to change the teacher, but to take responsibility for the learning. Engaging: I’m taking full responsibility for the learner (me). Disengaging: I’ll never be as smart. Unfortunately, the almighty letter grade continues to be the primary means of identifying smart students. Although teachers don’t often advertise grades for other kids to see, kids have a way of finding out. It’s a well-known belief, albeit distorted, that those who are scoring the highest are the smartest. Therefore, if a student is consistently scoring Bs or Cs, it’s natural for them to throw in the towel mentally. Thankfully, there’s another kind of smart rarely talked about in classrooms. Unlike school smarts, which are based solely on content knowledge, self-smarts have everything to do with self-knowledge. In other words, it’s not just about how much core content I know, but more importantly, it’s about my knowledge of the way I think, the way I feel, and the choices I make. Not surprisingly, when a student works on his/her self-smarts, school smarts naturally improves. Engaging: I can identify what’s stopping

me from achieving greater academic success. Disengaging: Homework is a joke. Truth be told, I’m not a big fan of homework. Having said this, I recognize that it’s still a reality in most schools throughout the country. Essentially, students have two choices with regard to homework – to fight it by complaining or to accept it as a reality. When they fight it, it often leads to less than desirable work or even a refusal to do the work. Sound familiar? I mentioned earlier that teachers are simply teaching. Well, homework is simply homeworking. Simply put, the homework itself has absolutely no power to change the mood of a student. It’s just a stack of papers to complete or a book to read. The papers or book could care less about a student’s feelings. Fighting homework only drains mental strength. Engaging: I choose to accept homework for what it is. Instead of calling it homework, I’ll call it brain training. -Mike Sissel is a former Kyrene teacher who owns and operates KaleidoEye, a youth leadership company providing emotional intelligence training for students and athletes. Information:




N. Korean challenge puts U.S. in a dangerous vulnerability BY TOM PATTERSON Guest Writer

Americans are finally finding out what it takes for the Left to support anti-missile defense in a nuclearized world. The answer: an immediate existential danger from a crazed dictator with nothing to lose from terrorizing us. Now, we’re faced with a lunatic who has the capability of obliterating parts of our mainland, an achievement that has made him a player on the world stage. The current crisis has been predictable for a long time. As nuclear capability gradually became within the technical reach of rogue states and terrorists everywhere, our leaders studiously ignored the signs of danger. The first anti-missile defense was the Strategic Defense Initiative, conceptualized by President Reagan and ridiculed as “Star Wars” by his political adversaries. Even when it proved effective in bringing about the end of the Cold War, opponents still followed a strategy of repeatedly underfunding and undermining the technology, then complaining about the lack of progress achieved. President Obama was a prominent opposition leader, helping to stall the program and then, as president, pronouncing it “unproven.” He canceled previously negotiated anti-missile installations in Poland and Czech Republic. Later, he was caught on a hot mic telling a Soviet official that he would later be “flexible with Vladimir” with respect to missile defense. We are now in a dangerously vulner-

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able situation. Experts say it would take up to three years to implement a system that would fully protect us from North Korea and eliminate China’s first-strike capability. Still, our inability to protect ourselves wouldn’t be such a big deal now if not for the weak diplomatic efforts that failed to contain the North Korean menace. After North Korea first began developing nuclear capability, President Clinton in 1994 struck a deal in which North Korea agreed to come clean and pursue only nonmilitary uses of nuclear power. But the Commies negotiated harder and smarter than we did, preserving multiple loopholes and avoiding effective compliance checks. The treaty probably did more to facilitate North Korea’s missile program than to hobble it.

Unfortunately, President George W. Bush did nothing to end the dithering and confront reality. Obama, for his part, raised appeasement to an art form around the world. He complained about wasting money “making some version of this Cold War daydream into reality,” as one pundit put it. In the end, Obama had a change of heart when his truculence had put our country in obvious danger and only then authorized anti-missile bases in the West. The lessons of history are clear. Diplomacy succeeds only when practiced from a position of strength. Appeasement doesn’t stop aggressors. When tyrants show you who they are, believe them. Unfortunately, our leaders have kicked the can down the road until there’s no more road, as Charles Krauthammer said.

Now that our mortal enemies have well-developed nuclear capabilities, our options are limited. Israeli forces in 1981 attacked the Iranian nuclear base Dosirak and were able to inflict telling damage, but most observers agree that approach today would produce unacceptable consequences. Russia and China, North Korea’s main patron and trading partner, should be urged in the strongest terms to help persuade North Korea to stand down. The hard truth is that a nuclear North Korea, hostile to the U.S., is in the strategic interests of both, so it’s unlikely we can win them over. Teddy Roosevelt’s foreign-policy advice was to “speak softly and carry a big stick.” President Trump seems to have it backwards, issuing bellicose threats, like he has so often, without seeming to realize that he must be willing and able to carry out the threats for them to have effect. That leaves missile defense, the best of the bad options out there. We need to bear down and pour all the resources we can into this national emergency. Fortunately, missile defense doesn’t have to be perfect to be effective, as we found in the Cold War. Just the credible prospect of an anti-missile strike degrades the value of the enemy’s nuclear arsenal and greatly reduces the possibility of a first strike. But we never would have come to this perilous point if our leaders had put America’s security interests above politics. – Tom Patterson, a Chandler resident, is a former state legislator.

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Fall prevention program at A.T. Still University celebrates 10 years BY DAVID M. BROWN Tribune Contributor

A few years ago, retiree Stan DuFrane lurched backward while returning a tennis ball. After a few hours in the emergency room and follow-up treatment, his medical provider, Iora Healthcare, told him about the Still Standing Fall Prevention Outreach at A.T. Still University (ATSU), just a few blocks away in Mesa. He’s playing recreational tennis again. “The program made me aware of the dangers of falling. I’m more careful now,” said DuFrane, a full-time Mesa resident for 20 years. The largest and longest-running program of its kind in Arizona, the Still Standing Fall Prevention Outreach has served 4,000-plus people who have either been injured in a fall or want to learn how to avoid dangerous situations that can cause one. Apache Junction’s Don and Judy Link also heard about the fall prevention program from their Iora provider, Dr. Kimberly Shipman. “The program helped us recognize some of the fears that people might have after falling and how with positive thinking we can work through and overcome the fear of falling again,” Don said. Illinois natives, the couple retired to Arizona three years ago. “The importance of exercise to help with strength and flexibility was emphasized, and there were also discussions on fall hazards in our homes and our environment and action plans to correct and avoid these problems,” he added, commending the two ATSU students hosting the program. “And we were able to discuss falls with others who actually had experienced

them, and their insight was beneficial in our discussions throughout the course,” Don Link added. Entering its 10th year this fall, the free program is part of the Aging Studies Project at the university and partners with East Valley businesses and municipalities. “The goals of the program are to provide a substantive interdisciplinary service learning experience for our students and our community members with an effective, evidence-based fall prevention program,” said Elton Bordenave, director of the Aging Studies Project and associate professor in the Department of Audiology. The need is significant. Each year, 2.8 million older people in the United States are treated in emergency departments for fall injuries, and at least 300,000 of them are hospitalized for hip fractures. Adjusted for inflation, the direct medical costs for fall injuries are $31 billion annually, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In 2014, the average hospital stay for Arizonans was 4.6 days, and the average charges for inpatient visits were $56,510, totaling $678.9 million, the Arizona Department of Health Services Office of Injury Prevention said. Emergency department hospital visits resulted in charges exceeding $245.2 million, The ATSU Aging Studies project launched in 2003, and work began in 2004 with various trial efforts. For the students, this became today’s Matter of Balance curriculum at ATSU. The fall prevention program followed in the 2008-09 school year with 30 students participating in classes at 15 sites throughout Phoenix and the East Valley. More than 1,000 seniors participated that first year.

Special to SanTan Sun News

Celebrating their completion of the fall prevention program with A.T. Still staffers are, from left, front row: Dolly Trumbauer, Madeline Maharry and Aarshee Talwar; standing: Frances Lyon, Emma Alaestante, Fartun Jama, Opaline Halley and Elton Bordenave.

For its 10th year, the program will expand with 200 students serving 70 sites across Maricopa County, a third in the East Valley. From an initial two community partners, the program now has more than 50, including major health systems and most Valley municipalities, said Bordenave, an East Valley resident for 30-plus years. One of the students participating this year is Mesa’s Dalton Ishmail, who is enrolled in ATSU’s Physician Assistant Studies program. Classmates and students from other university programs such as physical therapy, occupational therapy and osteopathic medicine are also involved. For eight weeks, Ishmail and his fellow students visited a local senior center and

worked with the elderly, who are at a particularly high risk of falls in their daily life and suffer more intense, even fatal, injuries. “We were able to have open discussions about plans and practice exercises that can help prevent future falls from happening,” said Ishmail, an ultrasound tech before entering the P. A. program. ATSU’s fall prevention program has been recognized locally with a Community Impact Award from the Living Well Institute in 2015 and was nationally profiled in the Wall Street Journal the following year. In 2015-16 the program received a $95,000 grant from the Baptist Hospitals and Health Systems Legacy Foundation. To participate, contact a local senior center.

Students excel in classical language competition SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

Socrates and Julius Caesar might have been impressed with some East Valley students who demonstrated their knowledge of ancient Greeks and Romans at a recent competition. A student from BASIS Chandler and several students from Gilbert Classical Academy earned top honors at the 2017 National Junior Classical League Convention recently at Troy University in Troy, Alabama. They competed against 1,700 students from around the country in academic, athletic and creative contests. They also voted in the national student elections and took part in service projects to help Alabama schools. The National Junior Classical League is an organization for junior high and senior high school students and is sponsored by the American Classical League. Its aim is to spark an interest in and appreciation of the literature, language and culture of ancient Greece and Rome, as well as to convey an understanding of what modern culture owes to that classical antiquity.

Adrian Palumbo, 13, of BASIS Chandler competed in numerous categories and took second place in the modern myth competition, part of the Middle School Division for Creative Contests, as well as second place for a large model of Mount Etna, in the Middle School Division for Graphic Arts Contests. Adrian took fourth place in the essay category of the Middle School Division for Creative Contests, and 10th place overall in Creative Contests for all levels. Gilbert Classical Academy students Victoria Hays, Anika Kang, Ashlyn Robinette, Esteban Salas and Ainsley Snyder also competed in the Classical League convention and took home several awards in various categories, including High School Division for Graphic Arts Contests and High School Division for Athletic Contests. Anyone interested in starting a chapter of the Junior Classical League at their school or a Latin program may email Sarah Palumbo, state chairwoman of the Arizona Junior Classical League and Latin teacher at Gilbert Classical Academy, at

Photo by Sarah Palumbo

From left: Adrian Palumbo, a BASIS Chandler student, with Gilbert Classical Academy students Esteban Salas, Ainsley Snyder, Anika Kang, Ashlyn Robinette and Victoria Hays show off their honors after participating in the 2017 National Junior Classical League Convention at Troy University in Troy, Alabama.






Apprende eclipse viewing

Lauren Clark/Kyrene School District

Students at Apprende Middle School in Chandler got to watch the Aug. 21 solar eclipse thanks to CORE Construction, which donated NASA-certified solar lenses to students, parent-teacher association members and staff. In the photo on the left, students, from left, Mia Malone, Areil Farmer-Narvaez and Leah Gunter join Kollin Parish (front). At right, Gabriel Ramirez, Fermin Hernandez, Leanna Myers and Gabriella Campa enjoy the view.

Chandler residents making the grade at colleges SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

Several Chandler natives are making the grade at universities around the country, either earning degrees or making the dean’s lists. Chandler residents Kurt Fernandez and Michelle Rosen have graduated from Upper Iowa University, a private university in Fayette, Iowa. Fernandez

graduated magna cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in business administration and Rosen graduated cum laude with a nursing degree. Samuel Curl of Chandler graduated summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering from ASU’s Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. He also graduated from ASU’s Barrett, the Honors College, after

Oh Baby!

completing his bachelor’s honors thesis, “An Experimental Study of the Effect of Induction and Exhaust Systems on a Vehicle’s Fuel Efficiency.” Chandler native Youjong Kim was named to the dean’s list, with a 3.5 GPA or higher for the academic term, at Massachusetts College of Pharmacy and Health Sciences for the spring 2017 semester. Kim is expected to graduate in

2022 with a doctor of pharmacy degree. Tori Wolter, a finance major from Chandler, has achieved dean’s high honors for the spring 2017 semester at Nichols College in Dudley, Massachusetts. Alexa Austin of Chandler earned dean’s list honors for the spring 2017 semester at Saint Joseph’s University. Austin studies English in the University’s College of Arts and Sciences.


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Once Kyrene taught them, now they’re teaching there BY PAUL MARYNIAK Executive Editor

Some people never get over their early years at school. Just ask nine of the 100 or so Kyrene teachers who started working in district schools this month. They attended Kyrene schools as kids. Indeed, three of the nine are teaching at the same schools they attended as students. Those nine teachers aren’t the only ones whose paychecks are now paid by the district that played such an important role in their formative years. “We have about 100 overall employees who work here and were educated here,” Kyrene spokeswoman Nancy Dudenhoefer said. Earlier this month, the nine teachers and their 91 colleagues attended a multiday orientation program organized by the Kyrene Education Association and Kyrene Business and Community Development office along with district sponsors. “As new employees, they learn how various departments will support their work as teachers, observe mock classroom teaching practices and receive important school site information,” Dudenhoefer said. Each teacher received a $50 Target gift card from the Kyrene Foundation to welcome them. School supplies and other donated items were provided by local

sponsors, including Realtors Diana Keller, Carly Gibbs and Pattie Agnew with Keller Williams Realtor Group, Grand Canyon University, Papa John’s, Stratum Laser Tag, P.F. Chang’s and BR Fitness. The nine teachers and their workplaces are Alexis Lupercio, Mirada Elementary; Lauren Scott, who splits her time among Kyrene Traditional Academy, Norte and Waggoner; Kaitlin Blay, Manitas; Michelle Lucas and Taylor Soggie, Pueblo; Sarah Rees, Mariposa; Esperanza Gonzalez, Norte; Brittney Bazuin, Kyrene Middle School; and Ashley Lindsay, Colina. Blay, a special education resource teacher for third-fifth grades at Manitas, said the orientation “was nothing like I had ever experienced before.” “I felt like I had been part of the Kyrene team for years already,” she said. In some ways, she was on a different Kyrene team as a kid: she was a student at Cielo Elementary and Apprende Middle School. A teacher for four years at Scottsdale Unified School District, she signed up with her district alma mater because “I had heard from others how well Kyrene takes care of their teachers and I knew I wanted to be a part of it. It has been a dream of mine to be a teacher in the district I grew up in. “I have heard so many great things about working in the Kyrene School District and I knew it was time for a change,” Blay added.

Michelle Lucas, a seventh-grade social studies teacher at Pueblo, attended Norte Elementary and Kyrene Middle School praised the district’s treatment of new employees. “I have never attended a new teacher orientation that was as thorough as this,” she said. “Kyrene is amazing in their offerings and delivery of staff development. I actually took advantage of a few trainings at the district office this summer.” “We received trainings on how to use the technology we’re expected to access throughout the year and breakout sessions that were relevant to our level (elementary or middle school) and our content,” she said. “I was so very impressed,” she added, saying her welcome made her feel “completely respected and valued as a new employee.” “The trainings were valuable and allowed us time to network with other new teachers,” Lucas said. “I felt like I immediately had contacts and resources available to me.” A Corona High School graduate, Lucas worked 18 years for the Tempe Union High School District, teaching at Tempe High for five years and Desert Vista High for 13 before taking four years off to be a stay-at-home mom. “I chose Kyrene because my children attend Kyrene schools,” said Lucas, whose son is in second grade at Paloma

Elementary and daughter who is a seventh grader at Pueblo. “As a parent, I loved the district and education they were receiving,” added Lucas, who returned to work last spring as a math assistant at Paloma. She jumped at the chance to become a seventh-grade teacher. “I loved working with the younger kids and realized that I truly missed teaching,” she explained, adding: “I was excited to see an opening for a seventh-grade social studies teacher at Pueblo because I was impressed with the district as an employee and knew that if or when I returned to teaching, that I’d want to stay in Kyrene.” Lauren Scott, who is in her first teaching job and teaches Spanish and drama, said she also feels “it is such an honor and privilege to be surrounded by such a caring and supportive community” in the district. “I am a Kyrene kid,” she added. “My mentor during student teaching, Michael Krill, was my first band director. Student teaching with him was an enriching experience, and it inspired me to apply within the district. “I picked this district because of all the different opportunities it offers families,” she added. “All of the employees that I met during my college years had only wonderful things to say about working for Kyrene. I love it here.”

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Local millennials embrace trend of lab-grown diamonds BY ALISON STANTON Contributor

When Ruben Padilla of Chandler proposed to his girlfriend, Justine Palmisano, he presented her with an engagement ring featuring a sparkling diamond solitaire. In addition to looking beautiful, the diamond in Palmisano’s ring represents a growing trend among millennials. Instead of being mined in the traditional manner, the gemstone was created in a lab. Padilla, 29, purchased the lab-grown diamond from Robbins Brothers in Scottsdale. Padilla decided to propose to Palmisano, 28, also of Chandler, during a July trip to Vancouver, British Columbia. With less than two months to select and purchase the ring, he got busy shopping. Unfortunately, Padilla said, his first experiences shopping for a ring left him feeling overwhelmed. “I visited a couple of jewelry stores in town and could not seem to find the right engagement ring,” he said. “I wanted to be certain that my fiancée would love the ring I had chosen for her.” Padilla said Robbins Brothers general sales manager Sharon Lehew, of Chandler, and her staff explained lab-grown diamonds. As Lehew explained, the main differences between lab-grown and mined diamonds are that the former are eco-friendly and typically priced at 25 to 30 percent less than the latter – features that she said make them very attractive to millennials who are interested in sustainable and affordable products. “Miners can dig up to 200 to 250 tons of ore, but they may only get one 1 carat diamond,” Lehew said. There are two different ways to create a diamond in the laboratory, Lehew said: the high-pressure high-temperature (HPHT) method and chemical vapor deposition, or CVD. “HPHT starts out with a small carbon seed that is put into a chamber, and it actually replicates the Earth’s environment with extreme heat and pressure to create the diamond,” Lehew said, adding that lab-grown diamonds are made in the United States and in other

countries. “With the CVD method, the diamonds are made from varying amounts of gases in a chamber, and the carbon source comes from hydrogen. All diamonds must have carbon in order for the crystal to form.” The resulting diamond, Lehew said, is chemically exactly the same as a diamond mined from the Earth. “It takes a very, very expensive machine to tell the difference between a mined diamond and a lab-grown one. The machine can see the formations in the crystal and that the lab-grown diamond shows less stress. But you have to look at it in an expensive computer. This is not something a jeweler’s loupe can determine,” she said. “We like carrying both types, and we like giving our customers options,” she said, adding that when they present their customers with diamonds, she and her staff members do not say which gem is which. “Everyone looks at diamonds differently, so we want to find out which ones really speak to them without them knowing what is what.” Lehew said she and her staff thoroughly enjoyed working with Padilla and teaching him about the different types of diamonds. “It was really fun to work with Ruben,” she said. Padilla appreciated the lesson he got. “The best part was the amount of teaching Sharon did for me when it came (time) to choose the diamond,” he said. “Sharon took her time to teach me about the different aspects and made sure I was well informed during my search for the perfect ring.” After looking over four diamonds that matched the carat size and cut of what he had in mind, Padilla chose an oval shaped, lab-grown E3 diamond, which is Robbins Brothers’ signature brand. “The brilliancy of the lab-grown diamond outshined the natural diamonds that it was being compared to,” he said. Padilla reported that Palmisano said yes to his proposal, and she is very happy with the diamond and ring that he selected. “My fiancée is in love with the ring and we are getting married in the spring of 2019,” he said.

Special to SanTan Sun News

Ruben Padilla and Justine Palmisano, both of Chandler, are engaged and plan to get married in the spring of 2019. Padilla bought Palmisano an engagement ring with a lab-grown diamond.

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Neighborhood Networks Call ahead to confirm information, as details occasionally change after they’ve been published. If you have a recurring monthly meeting you would like to see listed in Neighborhood Networks, email complete details to Note: SanTan Sun News has a Spiritual Connections column in the Spirituality section for ongoing religion-related events. About Care Monthly volunteer training, by individual appointment A nonprofit serving homebound Chandler and Gilbert residents; provides transportation, shopping and errands, friendly visits, reassurance phone calls, and minor home repairs. Info: 480-802-2331, Absolute Business Builders: Business Networking International 8 to 9:30 a.m. Wednesdays Chompie’s 3841 W. Frye Road, Chandler Info: Nikki Janulewicz, 480-570-1835, Action Networkers: Business Networking International 11:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. Wednesdays Chompie’s 3841 W. Frye Road, Chandler Info: Marty Recht, 602-315-2056, Alzheimer’s Association Desert Southwest Chapter, Chandler 5:30 p.m. second Thursday of the month Support group for caregivers of people with dementia. Free and no preregistration required. Chandler Regional Medical Center, Mor-

rison Building, Learning Resource Room 1875 W. Frye Road, Chandler Info: Mindy, 602-528-0545, ext. 201 American Legion James O. Schroeder Post 55 7 p.m. third Tuesday of the month Sun Lakes Country Club, Navajo Room 25601 N. Sun Lakes Boulevard, Sun Lakes Info: Commander Byron Weston, 480-802-6623 Arizona Special Education Network, Chandler area Provides disability-related education, advocacy and resources to help parents navigate the complex special education system. Info: 602-531-0230 Breast Cancer Support Group 2 to 4 p.m. second Monday of each month Free, no preregistration required Ironwood Cancer and Research Centers 685 S. Dobson Road, Chandler Info: Kelly, 480-340-4013, Build Your Own Business: Chandler 8 a.m. first and third Thursday of each month East Valley networking and referral organization, meets in Ahwatukee at a private location; address will be provided upon

contact. Info: Lisa,, Cancer Caregiver Support Group-Chandler 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. third Saturday of each month Support group for caregivers of people with cancer. Free and no preregistration required. Ironwood Cancer and Research Centers 685 S. Dobson Road, Chandler Info: Kelly, 480-340-4013, Caregiver Support Group 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. third Saturday of each month Ironwood Cancer & Research Center 685 S. Dobson Road, Chandler Info: Kelly Huey, 480-340-4013, Chair Yoga Class-Chandler 10 to 11 a.m. Wednesdays Free, no preregistration required Ironwood Cancer and Research Centers 685 S. Dobson Road, Chandler Info: Kelly, 480-340-4013, Chandler Airport Commission 7 p.m. second Wednesday of each month The commission makes recommendations to the Chandler City Council regarding airport operations, physical growth, economic development and proposed land use. Chandler Municipal Airport terminal 2380 S. Stinson Way, Chandler Info: 480-782-3540


Chandler Business Alliance 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. Thursdays Professional business coalition dedicated to the economic and social development of its members and the Chandler community as a whole. BLD 1920 W. Germann Road, Chandler Info:, Chandler Chamber Business Golf 7 a.m. tee time, first and third Wednesdays of each month Includes nine holes of golf, continental breakfast and networking opportunities. Preregistration required online. Golf venue varies. Info: Chandler Farmers’ Market 3 to 7 p.m. Thursdays Weekly market with more than 30 vendors selling fresh produce, baked goods, gourmet food and handmade crafts. Free admission. Dr. A.J. Chandler Park, on the east side of Arizona Avenue, Chandler Info: 480-855-3539, Chandler Lions Club 6:30 p.m. first and third Tuesdays of each month Area residents are invited to come join like-minded volunteers and make new friends. Atria Chandler Villas, Community Room 101 S. Yucca Street, Chandler Info: RuthJon Wick, 480-895-3569,




Crossing guards train to keep kids safe around school BY JESSICA SURIANO Tribune Staff Writer

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Brandon Forrey walks crossing guards through training at Dobson High School.

and people out on the streets.” Lydia Marquez, a staff member for the Creighton and Balsz school districts in Phoenix, has been a crossing guard for 15 years. She originally started the job out of convenience because both of her children were in school. She said her biggest challenges as a crossing guard occur when people are in a hurry and don’t respect signs or kids crossing the street. On one occasion, Marquez said she saw a parent in a rush almost run over their own child’s foot at a school drop-off.

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About 150 people from all over the East Valley attended the 12th annual Maricopa Association of Governments crossing guard training at Dobson High School recently. Participants learned everything there is to know about safely guiding children to and from school, including sun and water safety, traffic laws and the correct conduct of a crossing guard. Jean DeStories, fire and life safety education specialist for the Mesa Fire and Medical Department, gave a presentation about the different measures crossing guards can take to protect themselves from dehydration, sunburn, heatstroke and other issues that can arise from working outside for extended periods of time. “Take care of yourself so you can take care of others,” DeStories said. Ashley Barinka, traffic safety educator for the Mesa City Transportation Department, said it is important for crossing guards to go through training every year and stay up to date on instructions, even if they have been a crossing guard before. She said with the additional two training workshops held at Washington High School and the Rio Vista Community Center in Phoenix earlier in the week, about 400 people total went through the programs this year. “With school starting back up, be more cautious out there, drivers,” Barinka said. “Pay attention. Cellphones down. Drive slower. There’s going to be a lot more kids

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Officer Mike Kuntz and Sergeant Efren Carmona of the Mesa Police Department and Officer Jeremy Logan of the Chandler Police Department gave a presentation on traffic laws for crosswalks, pedestrians and jaywalking at the Aug. 3 session. According to the most recent data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 5,376 pedestrians were killed in traffic crashes in the United States in 2015. In the same year, nearly 129,000 pedestrians were treated for non-fatal injuries related to traffic crashes. Children and older adults are the most

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Diana Perez tries out her stop sign during crossing guard training at Dobson High School in Mesa.

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Chandler-Gilbert faculty member given award SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Marla Felix, Ann Harbin and Diana Perez, from left, went through crossing guard training at Dobson High recently. More than 150 people from all over the East Valley learned about protecting children, sun and water safety, traffic laws and the correct conduct of a crossing guard.

CROSSING GUARDS from page 53 under the age of 15 killed in a traffic crash was a pedestrian. In a 2016 study researching 39,000 middle and high school students and 56,000 drivers in school zones, Safe Kids Worldwide observed unsafe street crossing behavior in about 80 percent of students, unsafe drop-off and pickup behavior in nearly one in three drivers and a 13 percent increase in pedestrian death rate of teenagers ages 12 to 19 since 2013. Ray Parmigiani, a traffic studies analyst

for the Mesa City Transportation Department, has participated in the crossing guard trainings for about eight or nine years of the 11 he has worked with the city. Every few years, he said, the training is revamped to educate crossing guards on the most up-to-date information to keep everyone safe, including education on new advancement in traffic technology. “It’s important that we just keep reinforcing and reiterating the traffic laws and what they need to do to be safe out there,” Parmigiani said

A Chandler-Gilbert Community College faculty member known for his passionate sharing of his culture is being honored with a literacy/arts award. David Munoz, a Residential Philosophy and Religious Studies Department faculty member, is receiving the Alberto Rios Outstanding Literacy/Arts Award Sept. 6 at The Victoria Foundation’s 8th annual Arizona Higher Education Awards event at the Arizona Biltmore Hotel. The Victoria Foundation selects local educators for their impact on literacy and art in education for the honor, named after Arizona poet and longtime Arizona State University professor Alberto Rios. Munoz has worked in the literary and academic fields for more than 40 years. A Mexico City native, he started his college career at the Universidad Nacional Autonoma de Mexico in the Philosophy and Letters Department. After graduating from that college, Munoz moved to the United States in 1975. He has earned several other degrees including a master’s degree in Hispanic literature from Arizona State University, and a Ph.D. in philosophy of religion from Trinity Theological Seminary. Besides his love of education, Munoz also loves Hispanic/Chicano writing. A bilingual writer, he has written in many genres, including short stories, es-

Special to SanTan Sun News

David Munoz, a Residential Philosophy and Religious Studies faculty member at Chandler-Gilbert Community College, will receive the Alberto Rios Outstanding Literacy/Arts award.

says, chronicles and textbooks. Some of his work includes “Insanities, Soundness, and Reality: A collection of short stories told perhaps by the same person,” “Editorial Garabatos” and “El Santo Don Patricio.”

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Shelters seek Chandler homes for two dogs, two cats Animal rescue agencies are hoping some Chandler residents can help give new homes to two cats and two dogs. One cat, Silky Sally, had a family that fell on hard times, according to Jannelle Cosgriff of Friends for Life Animal Rescue. “Silky Sally is very cuddly and likes to play,” Cosgriff said. “She enjoys the company of other cats that also enjoy playing.” A 2-year-old black domestic short-hair, the cat may need time to acclimate to a new environment, “but once she acclimates to new surroundings and people, she’ll quickly become your shadow.” She has been altered, vaccinated, microchipped, de-wormed and are tested for FELV/FIV. Her adoption fee is $95. Cosgriff also is looking to find a home for a year-old hound-shepherd mix named Nessie. The 75-pound dog “enjoys outings with her human kennel buddies and is a wonderful companion with her humans” but “is not, however, fond of other dogs so her ideal home is one where she’s the only dog and there are no young kids, due to her size.” Her adoption fee also is $95 and she is spayed, vaccinated, microchipped and licensed. For either Silky Sally or Nessie, contact the shelter at 480-497-8296 or Meanwhile, Jenny Bernot of Arizona Rescue also has a dog and a cat in need of new homes. Frito is a 3-year-old terrier mix that “loves everyone he meets,” Bernot said. “He loves to be with people regardless if it’s playtime, walk time, or snuggle time,” she added. “Frito loves having his ears/neck

scratched and his chin rubbed. He loves to sit on your lap and when given the opportunity will snuggle against your chest/shoulder as closely as possible.” Moreover, he gets along well with dogs and cats. Although he “isn’t into rough housing,” Frito “does enjoy a good game of chase or simply hanging out with his canine friends. Frito loves to walk and does it well.” Bernot said Frito “is very inquisitive and loves to sniff everything during his walks or visits to the dog park” and loves to play, whether it involves fetch or squeaky toys. “This friendly, affectionate, well-mannered, fun-loving guy has been on TV and has made a classroom visit where he charmed his way into many laps. The one thing he hasn’t done yet is found his forever family,” she added. Also at Arizona Rescue is a 3-year-old cat named Angie, who Bernot said “was in sad shape, suffering from terrible food allergies that left her feeling itchy, miserable, and not enjoying life very much” when she was first brought to the shelter. Now, “Angie’s scabs are healing nicely, she’s enjoying interactions with both people and other kitties, and she is beginning to dabble in playtime. Angie is clearly feeling much better.” “Angie is very affectionate with her people, happy to cuddle on your stomach or chest for hours. She sat on a volunteer’s stomach for over an hour without moving an inch except to head butt her face into the palm of the volunteer’s hand,” Bernot said, adding: “This certified lap kitty also loves being petted, scratched, and held. Angie is also

a fan of being brushed. This sweet, gentle girl has a loud, clear meow that she will use when she decides she wants your attention. Angie knows her name and will come from across the room to trot right over when you

call her name.” “Seeing Angie’s transformation has been incredible,” Bernot added. Either Angie or Frito can be found at

Photo courtesy of


Photo courtesy of


Photo courtesy of Friends for Life Animal Rescue

Silky Sally

Photo courtesy of Friends for Life Animal Rescue




Vice Mayor of Chandler welcomed at Town Hall CAMILLA MCLOUGHLIN Guest Writer

THE Vice Mayor of Chandler, Arizona, Kevin Hartke was welcomed to the offices of Tullamore Municipal District last Monday afternoon by the Cathaoirleach of Offaly County Council, Councillor Liam Quinn and the Cathaoirleach of Tullamore Municipal District, Councillor Sinead Dooley. Chandler is a sister city of Tullamore and there have been a number of exchanges, notably by students from the Sacred Heart School who regularly visit and attend Seton Catholic Preparatory, while students from there came here. In his address, Cllr Quinn said: ‘’It has been a great experience for me to have you over here and I think the town twinning programme is a great idea.’’ He said local businessman Tony McCormack had done a lot of work on the project and he thanked him for that. He also paid tribute to the President of the Board of Trustees for ChandlerTullamore Sister Cities project, Ellen Harrington and Camilla Cullen from Tullamore, who he said have ‘’put in a huge effort into the project.’” ‘’In Offaly we have to work that little bit harder to carve out our niche around the tourism brand and attract people to see what we have here, such as Clonmacnoise, Birr Castle the Slieve Bloom mountains. We work very hard to promote Offaly. We have it all developed around the notion of Ireland’s hidden gem and when people

come to the county they realise that there is more on offer than they would have experienced or thought before. Anything you can do to promote that, on your side of the pond is very welcome,’’ he said. ‘’It has been an honour for me as cathaoirleach to welcome you. I want to wish you the very best of luck. This time next year you are hoping to be elected Mayor of Chandler and hopefully we will see you back in Offaly in the not too distant future.’’ Cllr Sinead Dooley. told the visitors that she had been involved with the twinning and the whole Sister Cities project from the outset with Tony McCormack, who was a councillor at the time. ‘’It was an idea which grew completely from Camilla Cullen and her husband David who was employed with Intel a wonderful company which I wish we had an outreach of in the Tullamore electoral area,’’ stated Cllr Dooley. ‘’But when Dave moved to Chandler in Arizona, one can only imagine the huge upheaval and upset for the whole Cullen family. But Camilla being Camilla, did not take it sitting down and she created something wonderful. I’m very grateful that Camilla met up with Ellen Harrington and out of that we have the sister cities. ‘’I know the chamber are very active as well and Tony McCormack has managed to foster some relationships with chambers and companies as well. The exchange we have in the Sacred

Special to SanTan Sun News

Pictured from left at the Exhibition of Postcards at Aras an Chontae were Lauren Koll, Arizona Rose, Cllr. Liam Quinn, Chandler Vice Mayor Kevin Hartke and Lynne Hartke, Kevin Hartke’s wife.

Heart School with Seton (Catholic Preparatory) is a wonderful example of how it has been extended,’’ she said. Cllr Dooley said she hoped there would be more developments in the future, especially opportunities for growing business in Tullamore. Mr Tony McCormack said he wanted to clarify that the Sister Cities project

was started by the Tullamore Chamber of Commerce who set up a subcommittee led by Brian Garvin, about 8 years ago. In his speech, Mr Hartke said he was thoroughly enjoying his trip to Tullamore. see



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Special to SanTan Sun News

(From left) Lynne Hartke (wife of Chandler Vice Mayor Kevin Hartke), Chandler Vice Mayor Kevin Hartke, Cathaoirleach of Tullamore Municipal District Sinead Dooley and Cllr Liam Quinn Chairman Offaly County Council gather in Tullamore. The Hartkes were welcomed to the offices of Tullamore Municipal District.

TULLAMORE from page 56 ‘’I understand why for economic reasons people might move to the United States, but this is truly a gem,” he said. “Your community is a gem, the Midlands is a gem and your people are a gem. We enjoyed being at the Tullamore show and your hospitality is second to none; your beauty as a country is outstanding. “Its character is beyond our belief. We celebrated our 100th anniversary as a city; 100 years as a city seems very significant, but to come and walk in the shadows of buildings and ruins that make that a small child was outstanding. So I have thoroughly enjoyed this. I believe that relationships are where most things

start and I would love to see some economic push that would be mutually beneficial,” he added. Mr. Hartke was then presented with a book written by Heritage Officer, at Offaly County Council, Amanda Pedlow, called 101 Quirky Things about Offaly. He also received a local authority pin. His wife Lynne was presented with a scarf with the Offaly County Council logo. In turn Mr. Hartke emptied a suitcase of gifts and items, which he presented to Cllrs Quinn and Dooley before handing out smaller items to everyone present. He and his wife Lynne then took some refreshments before departing for Down and are planning on visiting Dingle in Kerry later this week.

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Special to SanTan Sun News

(From left) Wife of Chandler Vice Mayor Kevin Hartke, Lynne Hartke receives a presentation by the Cathaoirleach of Tullamore Municipal District, Cllr Sinead Dooley in Tullamore, Ireland.

Chandler-Tullamore Sister Cities (CTSC) is a nonprofit organization created to bring to life the first Sister City relationship to the City of Chandler. The organization’s mission is “to cultivate and maintain a strong reciprocal relationship between the City of Chandler, Arizona, and Tullamore, Ireland, to encourage cultural understanding,

community involvement, economic development and educational exchanges,” according to the CTSC website. As part of the Sister city relationship, the “Tullamore Tribune,” a newspaper in Tullamore published every week, and the “SanTan Sun News” are exchanging stories. The following is a story published August 17 and photos shared by the “Tullamore Tribune.” The style, spellings and content are kept as published by the “Tullamore Tribune” with some minor edits for clarity.


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Rawhide cuts public hours, looks to events BY COLLEEN SPARKS Staff Writer

Rawhide Western Town & Event Center is dramatically reducing its hours starting Friday, Sept. 1, in response to a decline in attendance in recent years. Instead, the 1880s-themed Old West entertainment venue and steakhouse on the Gila River Indian Community is beefing up its concerts, festivals and other special events that require tickets. The business, at 5700 W. North Loop Road, is also urging people to rent space in its dusty-town setting for private parties. Rawhide has been open Friday, Saturday and Sunday throughout the year except in the hot summer months. It allows visitors who buy tickets to attend its Red, White & Rawhide Fireworks Spectacular in July and other paid, ticketed entertainment in the summer. Starting this month, though, the town will be open to the public for only a few days, regardless of the season. Mostly, it will be open only for its many concerts, festivals and signature happenings requiring tickets, such as Boo! Arizona 2017, Fiesta Dog Show and Rawhide Snowy Christmas. While attendance has dropped on its regular-admission days, more visitors are coming for festivals and other ticketed entertainment, said Cindi Carver, Rawhide general manager. “We had wonderful successes for our holidays,” Carver said. “Then they would come on a typical Friday night when we don’t have all the vendors. They would be like, ‘When I was here, we saw this show.’ The show’s still here but the town has a different atmosphere when it’s not home to hundreds of people. “This is what people love about Rawhide,” she said. “With the special events, there’s lots of crowds; there’s lots of people. They love that ambiance.” On regular days, when there are no special events, Rawhide draws 600 to 800 guests, Carver said. Festivals, concerts and other shows requiring tickets tend to attract about 3,000 to 5,000 customers, she said. Attendance on the non-event days is down about 20 percent from two years ago, Carver added. Rawhide is starting its fall season with its Summer Ends Margarita & Mojito Festival 2-9 p.m. Sept. 30, when participants can taste margaritas, mojitos, microbrews and Mexican beers. The usual attractions – including live stunt shows, gold panning, train rides, the steakhouse and shopping – are available for guests who buy tickets to the festival. A new ticketed festivity at Rawhide in the 2017-18 season will be the Goldrush Music Festival, where Mashmello, $uicideboy$, Dillon Francis, San Halo and other artists will perform Nov. 18-19.

Casey James/Special to San Tan Sun News

Rawhide Western Town & Event Center fills up for a special event. Although attendance has dropped on its regular-admission days, more visitors are coming for festivals and other ticketed entertainment, officials say.

People will have a chance to visit Rawhide for regular admission without having to buy tickets on Sept. 9 and Oct. 6, 13 and 21. More general admission, public hours might be added and would be listed on Rawhide’s website at rawhide. com. Admission is free to Rawhide

they also can come to us for their private events. We can work within their budget.” Carver said Rawhide has offered a buffet on Mother’s Day and other occasions and will start offering it every Sunday in the steakhouse starting in September.

This is what people love about Rawhide, with the “special events, there’s lots of crowds; there’s lots of people. They love that ambiance.”

– Cindi Carver, Rawhide general manager

during the public hours, but people still must pay for food, shopping and special features such as hay and train rides. With Rawhide open mostly just for ticketed events, the make-believe town will be available more often to rent for private and semi-private parties, Carver said. “With this new transition those private events can be customized to whatever it is that you may want to do,” she said, adding: “You can actually make it your Rawhide. We are really focusing on getting the message out to people that while we are an event center and people can come to us for festivals and concerts,

She said the reason for greatly decreasing the number of regular business hours does not have to do with finances. “Rawhide has been a Valley icon for 47 years and we’re not going to go anywhere,” she said. “We wanted to get creative and say, ‘OK, let’s listen to the people and see what the people had to say.’ Our Thanksgiving buffet is wildly successful, and that kicks off our Snowy Christmas.” Jeremy McClymonds, who is on the board of directors of the Chandler Compadres, a charitable nonprofit organization, said Rawhide’s decision to cut back on general public hours makes sense.

The Chandler Compadres have a big fundraiser at Rawhide every year and McClymonds said “they’ve been a good partner with us.” The Chandler resident said Rawhide is “a special experience” that people enjoy once in a while for the gun show and shops, but not the kind of place residents typically visit every weekend. “Over the last five years, Chandler’s opened up a lot more restaurants and competing businesses,” McClymonds said. “There’s only so many consumer dollars.” He added Rawhide is great for the Compadres’ fundraiser because Chandler does not have many indoor venues for large events. The Compadres typically attract 1,500 people every year to their November fundraiser at Rawhide. McClymonds is also supportive of Rawhide’s plans to expand ticketed entertainment. “I’d be open to them continuing to develop that and bring in all kinds of special events for kids and families and adults,” he said. Rawhide moved to its current spot from a north Scottsdale location in late 2005. Managers and employees told the East Valley Tribune then that the new park was an improvement over the Scottsdale location because the Chandler site has a modern steakhouse and bigger show facilities. Rawhide left 160 acres in north Scottsdale as part of a real estate deal.




Trash becomes treasures with recyclable couture at fashion show BY MEGHANN FINN SEPULVEDA Contributor

Buttons, bottle caps and bags of potato chips. These are just some of the unique items being recycled and reused to create wearable fashion garments that will be on display at the City of Chandler’s 3rd Annual Trashion Fashion Show. The event, at 1 p.m. Oct. 14 near Macy’s on the lower level of Chandler Fashion Center, is still accepting designers through Sept. 15. The show aims to not only provide entertainment, but to remind people that recycling is easy and prevents pollution, saves energy, reduces waste and helps sustain the environment. “We’re always looking for new ways to talk about waste reduction and recycling,” said Traci Conaway, recycling coordinator for the City of Chandler. “This event has really become a teachable movement.” Conaway said those who attend the runway event can learn about important recycling tips including how and where to properly dispose of plastic grocery bags and other household items. They will also learn about the potential danger to wildlife when garbage is left in nature. Designers can apply for the competition in three categories: ages 10 to 13, 14 to 17 and anyone 18 and older. Entry forms are available online and submissions are open to Chandler residents and students who attend Chandler Unified School District. To participate, designers must create garments made from a minimum of 75 per-

cent reused or recycled items and include a description and list of materials, along with an environmental fact and waste reduction tip. One winner will be awarded in each category. “Designers can choose to model their garment or have a family member or friend walk the runway on their behalf,” Conaway said. Approximately 18 designers competed in last year’s event, including Chandler resident Afrodita Ellerman, who made a dress from plastic dry cleaner bags, a purse out of cardboard and beer bottle caps and a matching hat using business cards. “The event is a great opportunity to show people how you can use recycled materials to make beautiful pieces,” Ellerman said. This year, Ellerman, 46, who works as a freelance photographer, plans to compete again and will focus on creating something more futuristic. “I already have an idea to design a piece that is white and black and incorporates plastic,” she said. “I will also accessorize with a hat or purse.” Now in its third year, the Trashion Fashion Show gives residents an opportunity to use discarded materials to create their garments. “We had a participant last year take plastic bags and create a wedding gown,” Conaway said. “We also saw garments made from paint swatches, broken up CD’s, and packaging from potato chip bags.” Following the event, several featured garments will be chosen to be on public display

Photo by Afrodita Ellerman

Sheila Coulam and her daughter Jordan model recycled items created by Chandler resident Afrodita Ellerman in a previous City of Chandler Trashion Fashion Show.

Oct. 23-Nov. 17 at Chandler City Hall. “We’ve seen some very talented participants come up with more creative pieces

than we could ever imagine,” Conaway said. Applications/information: chandleraz. gov/recycle.




Vision Gallery exhibit could alter views of contemporary art BY COLLEEN SPARKS Staff Writer

A new exhibit at a Chandler gallery will feature bold, bright colors and provocative subjects stretching the limits of what is perceived as contemporary art. Shape Shifters will feature the artwork of Phoenix artists Rachel Goodwin, Lisa Von Hoffner and Mike Jacobs at the Vision Gallery from Sept. 8 to Nov. 3. A public, free reception with the artists will take place from 5 to 7 p.m. Sept. 7 at the gallery at 10 E. Chicago Street. “Visitors to the gallery can expect

to see bright colors, recognizable forms and an interesting use of materials by all three artists,” said Peter Bugg, visual arts coordinator for the city of Chandler, adding: “While all three are trained in traditional painting, their work pushed beyond the boundaries of traditional paintings and extends into the three-dimensional realm.” Goodwin’s pop-style mixed media and abstracted installations of soft sculpture are designed to spark talks about commercial culture, the shopping experience and how people buy things to create an image of themselves they want others to see. Von Hoffner creates objects celebrating

womanhood and women’s sexuality in paintings and installation pieces enveloped in iridescent surfaces or neon light. Jacobs creates artwork that shows a group of ideas or memories. His concoctions layer traditional collage with screen printing and painting to produce three-dimensional pieces. “These three artists have works that complement one another well with bold colors and shapes that speak out loud,” Bugg said. “I am excited to see how they showcase their art in this exhibit. Each of them speaks strongly on their own, but together they will create a unique experience for visitors.”

The artists are also enthusiastic about showing their artwork at Vision Gallery. “I’m excited for the opportunity to display works in the Chandler community with two artists whom I admire and have always wanted to collaborate with,” Goodwin said. “Vision Gallery offers a great, contemporary space in the heart of downtown for us to have fresh, new perspectives into recently completed artworks among immersive installation experiences,” he continued. “I’m really See

VISION page 61

Photo by Mike Jacobs

Photo by Tim Bailey

Local artist Rachel Goodwin creates bright, pop-type pieces like this one, called “Baggage,” designed to spark conversation about our commercial culture. Her work will be part of the Shape Shifters exhibit at Vision Gallery.

“The Fox and the Grapes” is one of the pieces artist Mike Jacobs has created. His work will be on display at Vision Gallery, along with the work of Rachel Goodwin and Lisa Von Hoffner.



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VISION from page 62 looking forward to the conversations our pieces will have next to one another in the space.” Von Hoffner said it is a “really fun time for me to roll out some of my recent efforts in the studio. “My interest in composing space has yielded these dreamy, acidic, oracular places that allow the viewer to enter into a fantastical farce of reality,” she said, adding: “I am excited to segue into the growing art scene in Chandler alongside two accomplished artists who have developed their own singular language of color and form. A shiny contemporary space like Vision Gallery is the tabula rasa for us to coproduce this exhibition.” Jacobs said he is also excited about the exhibition and the chance to show pieces with Goodwin and Von Hoffner because their work “visually interacts together in a

very exciting and dynamic way.” “As emerging artists, showing work in Chandler is a great opportunity to get the work seen by a community outside of the Phoenix art scene,” he said. “I feel it is important for artists and galleries – thanks, Peter Bugg and Vision Gallery – to bridge the gap between communities; it is the only way that our artistic community will find support and continue to grow,” Jacobs said. The Vision Gallery is a nonprofit entity that the Chandler Cultural Foundation manages. The Vision Gallery and its sister gallery at the Chandler Center for the Arts represent over 300 regional artists and they are home to two Art-O-Mats, vending machines filled with artwork people can buy. Part of art sales are used to support VISION KIDZ, art education workshops provided free to the community. Information:

Photo by Mike Jacobs

Artist Mike Jacobs creates artwork that shows a group of ideas or memories. This piece is called “Between Two Worlds.”

GREAT Teachers






Photo by Lisa Von Hoffner

“Kimberly” is one of artist Lisa Von Hoffner’s creations. Von Hoffner’s work will be part of the Shape Shifters exhibit at Vision Gallery in downtown Chandler.

Photo by Peter Bugg

“Radical” is a piece Phoenix artist Lisa Von Hoffner made. Her work will be on display at Vision Gallery.

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Parties around movies big at Alamo Drafthouse BY KENNETH LAFAVE Contributor

Film is an art. But movies are a party. That’s been the unspoken motto of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema since the chain started as a single theater in Austin in 1997. Now that Chandler has an Alamo theater – the only one in Arizona – the party has begun. In August, Alamo Drafthouse Chandler hosted a 30th anniversary bash for the cult classic, “Monster Squad.” Two screenings sold out, and fans waited in line for half and hour and longer to meet the movie’s stars. Get ready this month for a sing-along “Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory,” with guest appearances by the actors who played Mike Teavee and Veruca Salt in the classic 1968 musical film. (Alert: They’re grown-ups now, going on senior-citizen status.) Plus… “Next month also starts a dystopian series where we’ll screen ‘Galaxy Quest’ and ‘Spaceballs,’ and a livestream event and party for ‘Robocop,’” said Lauren Knight, creative manager for Alamo Drafthouse Cinema. Creative manager? “Sometimes when I describe what I do, I say it’s ‘creative programming,’” Knight explained. “Whether it’s live events with a cast, or having cosplayers (costumed fans) in the lobby for a superhero movie, or just showing ‘Pulp Fiction’ for five bucks on a weekend, that’s all in my wheelhouse.” This year, Knight is steering hard, with an increased number of events honoring Alamo’s 20th anniversary. Hard to believe, but only two decades ago, movie theaters didn’t serve food beyond

popcorn, candy, and those rubbery things called “movie hot dogs.” Alamo was the first to include burgers and tacos and fish ‘n’ chips in their expanded snack bar. And more importantly, given the company name… “Alamo was literally the first theater chain where you could watch a movie and have a beer at the same time,” Knight said. Now that every chain in the country has copied Alamo’s trend, what’s left to innovate? The movie as an event. Last month’s “Monster Squad” party brought together fans of the film and movie buffs who’d never heard of it and wanted to see what the fuss was about. What fuels the parties and special screenings are movies like “Monster Squad,” which fall in the cracks on release but gain an underground following, or movies like “Willy Wonka” and “Spaceballs,” which enjoy modest success on release but earn a stronger following on video or cable. As actor Andre Gower, who played the leader of the title group in “Monster Squad,” said in a panel discussion before the screening: “If this movie had been successful at the box office in 1987, we” – Gower and fellow actors Ryan Lambert and Ashley Bank – “wouldn’t be sitting in front of you today.” A movie that might have had initial success would’ve gotten lost in history. But its very failure ensured a fanatic fan base, one that is so energized a documentary film is being made about them. Of course, it’s possible to see new films at Alamo, as well. “We show current releases, too,” Knight said. “But to be honest, they are a means to an end. They allow us to do programming like this, to pay for special guests. Any special guest we have is

Photos by Lauren Knight

Above: An eager audience watched a special viewing of the cult movie “Monster Squad” last month in Chandler Right: (From left) Actors Andre Gower, Ashley Bank and Ryan Lambert from the cult classic “Monster Squad” appeared at Alamo Drafthouse Cinemas’ 30th anniversary bash for the movie last month.

not free. And it’s possible to show John Carpenter’s ‘The Thing’ for just $5 because we’re also showing ‘Spiderman: Homecoming,’ and selling that out.” The celebration of Alamo Drafthouse Cinema’s 20th anniversary will continue in the fall with a series called “Food and Film,” pairing the menu with the theme of the movie. “Willy Wonka” is a part of that – expect candy. And for “World’s End,” a 2013 movie about the

apocalypse viewed from a London pub, there’ll be beer flights and pub food. No word yet, though, on the menu for “Silence of the Lambs.” Alamo Drafthouse Cinema is at 4955 S. Arizona Ave. Information: 520-213-8129 or

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On Stage The David Bromberg Quintet, Thursday, September 7, SCPA. David Bromberg considers Bob Dylan, George Harrison, Emmylou Harris, Jerry Garcia, Bonnie Raitt and The Eagles as some of his many collaborators, friends and fans. “The Blues, the Whole Blues and Nothing But the Blues (Red House Records) is his 18th album, the most recent one in a solo career that kicked off in 1971 with his self-titled debut. His lively show will feature Larry Campbell, Tom Rush and Teresa Williams and include a trio of “Belated Birthday Bashes.” Sure Fire Soul Ensemble, Saturday, September 9, CCA. Described as a “heavy cinematic soul” band from San Diego, the group appeals to fans of organ, gritty Funk and original soundtracks. We3 featuring Nicole Pesce, Saturday, September 9, WHP. Piano prodigy Nicole Pesce was born in Phoenix and started composing her own music at age 11. At 14 years old, she performed on the “Jerry Lewis MDA Labor Day Telethon.” Then she went on tour and had a residency in Las Vegas. Pesce’s “Happy Birthday Variations” video pokes fun at how classical composers have performed the popular song and has generated 3 million views on YouTube.

Celtic fanatics and rock ‘n rollers. The group has built a diverse fan base in modern music. “Chandler Symphony Classical Series,” Sunday, October 8, CCA. The Chandler Symphony Orchestra offers superior symphonic and orchestral music performances in this show with the theme “Grand Canyon.” “Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat,” Continuing through Saturday, October 7, HCT. Check out the biblical saga of Joseph and his coat of many colors, featuring lyrics by Tim Rice and music by Andrew Lloyd Webber. “Sons of Serendip,” Saturday, October 21, CCA. This dynamic quartet has a harpist, cellist, pianist and vocalist. The unique musicians were finalists on the TV show “America’s Got Talent.” Audiences will see them perform songs from artists including Stevie Wonder, Sam Cooke, Kansas, Adele and The Weeknd. “The Brothers Grimm Spectaculathon,” Thursday, October 12 through Saturday, October 14, ASWC. The 110-minute show at Chandler-Gilbert Community College features two narrators trying to recreate the 209 Brothers Grimm fairytales in a quick and wild journey. Complicating matters, they try to combine them into one big fable with

Chandler Center for the Arts

Jarabe Mexicano will perform renditions of classic rancheras, huapangos, sones, and boleros, as well as arrangements of cumbia, reggae, and rock & roll on January 19 at Chandler Center for the Arts. Movie,” scored the FX series “Baskets” and was a featured Ted Talk presenter. Jazz Night, Monday, October 30, ASWC. This popular performance features the ChandlerGilbert Community College Jazz Combo, Big Band and Vocal Jazz Ensemble.

“Kiss and Tell,” Tuesday, September 12 through Tuesday, November 14, HCT. Hugh Herbert’s 1940s romp entangles a family feud, a secret marriage, and a madcap dose of mistaken identity. Two teenage girls, Corliss Archer and Mildred Pringle, cause their respective parents much concern when they start to become interested in boys. The parent’s bickering about which girl is the worse influence causes more problems than it solves after both girls sell kisses for charity at the USO bazaar.

Comedy Improv, Friday, September 22 and Friday, November 3, ASWC. Get ready to laugh as Chandler-Gilbert Community College students show off their comedic skills. “The Velveteen Rabbit. Reborn,” Saturday, September 23, CCA. A young boy’s love and some nursery magic help transform the Velveteen Rabbit from a favorite toy into a real rabbit. The boy and Velveteen go on exciting imaginary adventures to deep, dark caves and the wide open sea, learning the real meaning of friendship. “18th Annual Mariachi and Folklorico Festival,” Saturday, September 30, CCA. Directed by Vanessa Ramirez, the artists will perform the music and traditional dances of Mexico, highlighting vibrant folkloric dancers, as well as popular Mariachi groups. Gaelic Storm, Sunday, October 1, CCA. This chart-topping Celtic band appeals to bluegrass fans, as well as country cowboys, Deadheads,

Lost That Lovin’ Feelin’,” the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame duo of Bill Medley and Bobby Hatfield topped the charts in four decades. Tori Amos, Thursday, November 29, MAC. One of the most successful, prolific and influential artists of her generation, she was nominated for many Grammy Awards, has had her songs turned into graphic novels. Amos has also produced ground-breaking videos throughout her career. Ronnie Lee Milsap, Sunday, December 10, WHP. An American country music singer and pianist, he was one of country music’s most popular and influential performers of the 1970s and 1980s. He became country music’s first successful blind singer, and one of the most successful and versatile country crossover singers of his time, appealing to both country and pop music markets with hit songs that incorporated pop, R&B, and rock and roll elements.

George Benson and Kenny G, Friday, September 15, MAC. Having sold over 125 million albums worldwide, earning 11 Grammy Awards recording 15 No. 1 albums and 10 No. 1 singles, the pair will perform songs from their career-defining album plus greatest hits. The Beach Boys, Sunday, September 17, MAC. One of America’s greatest rock bands, with songs including “Good Vibrations,” “Fun Fun Fun,” “Help Me Rhonda” and “Surfin USA,” is led by Mike Love and Bruce Johnston, along with Jeffrey Foskett, Brian Eichenburger, Tim Bonhomme, John Cowsill and Scott Totten.


“Straighten Up and Fly Right,” Thursday, December 15, CCA. Featuring Ramsey Lewis and John Pizzarelli, revisiting Nat King Cole’s smoky, smooth vocals and stringing, they will perform a huge number of solid hits right. Chandler Center for the Arts

“Chandler Symphony Classical Series” is coming to Chandler Center for the Arts on October 8. The Chandler Symphony Orchestra will perform symphonic and orchestral music. Cinderella, Hansel and Gretel, Rapunzel, Rumpelstiltskin, Sleeping Beauty and Snow White, among other less famous stories including “The Devil’s Grandmother.” Get the Led Out, Thursday, October 12, CCA. These musicians are fans of the legendary English rock band Led Zeppelin and strive to pay homage to the group. “Meet Me in St. Louis,” Thursday, October 12 through Saturday, November 25, HCT. A musical journey back to the brink of the 1904 World’s Fair chronicles the life of a happy family made up of Mr. & Mrs. Smith, their four daughters and one son. With the addition of romantic suitors, comedic misunderstandings and jovial pranks this musical is filled with nonstop entertainment featuring memorable musical numbers such as “The Boy Next Door,” “Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas,” and “A Day In New York.” Andrew Bird, Friday, October 13, MAC. An internationally acclaimed multi-instrumentalist, vocalist, whistler and songwriter, he performed as the Whistling Caruso in Disney’s “The Muppets

Flamenco Legends, Thursday, November 2, MAC. Javier Limón, longtime collaborator of Paco De Lucía, reassembles the original band that toured with the legendary flamenco guitarist in the last years of his career. The Underwater Bubble Show, Friday, November 10, CCA. In this colorful show, “Mr. B” is transported to a happy, special place called Bubblelandia, a spot in which to daydream. The “inhabitants” of Bubblelandia include seahorses, starfish, dragon fish, clown fish, mermaids and others, who carry Mr. B in his imaginary journey in the underwater world where fantasy becomes reality. Trio Jinx, Thursday, November 16, MAC. A classical core trio, offering an evening of classical music spiced with splashes of folk, jazz and improvisation. They are a part of the Young Artist Development Series by Peabody Conservatory, a program of Johns Hopkins University. “Tribes,” Thursday, November 16 through Saturday, November 18, ASWC. This play tells the story of a boy named Billy, who was born deaf though his family can hear. He grows up in a very idiosyncratic and politically incorrect bubble. Billy adapts to his family’s unusual ways, but they don’t return the favor. When he meets Sylvia, a young woman on the threshold of deafness, he learns how it feels to be understood. “The Nutcracker presented by Ballet Etudes,” Friday, November 24, CCA. Serious dancers from the local ballet school will perform the classical, winter holiday favorite based on the story “The Nutcracker and the King of Mice” by E.T.A. Hoffman. Starting with a festive Christmas party scene, a girl named Clara, who receives a beloved nutcracker gift, later goes on a journey to the Land of Sweets, where she encounters colorful multi-ethnic dancing treats.

Chandler Center for the Arts

Get the Led Out, performing songs by the legendary Led Zeppelin, will rock the stage on October 12 at Chandler Center for the Arts.

Righteous Brothers, Saturday, November 25, MAC. With a string of No. 1 classics, including the most played song in radio history, “You’ve

Jarabe Mexicano, Thursday, January 19, CCA. True to their name, the group performs a mixture of traditional as well as popular genres. Their renditions of classic rancheras, huapangos, sones, and boleros fill their listeners with romantic nostalgia while their dynamic arrangements of cumbia, reggae, and rock & roll hits bring people to their feet.

On Stage Venue Index ASWC—Arnette Scott Ward Performing Arts Center, Chandler-Gilbert Community College 2626 E Pecos Road, Chandler Tickets: 480-732-7343, CCA—Chandler Center for the Arts 250 N. Arizona Avenue, Chandler Tickets: 480-782-2680, HCPA—Higley Center for the Performing Arts 4132 E. Pecos Road, Gilbert Tickets: 480-279-7194, HCT—Hale Centre Theatre 50 W. Page Avenue, Gilbert Tickets: 480-497-1181, MAC—Mesa Arts Center One E. Main Street, Mesa Tickets: 480-644-6500, SCPA—Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts 7380 E. Second Street, Scottsdale Tickets: 480-499-8587, WHP—Wild Horse Pass Hotel and Casino 5040 Wild Horse Pass Boulevard., Chandler Tickets: 800-946-4452, wingilariver. com/wild-horse-pass




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Spiritual Reflections

Amid atrocities in the world, can we return God’s love? BY RABBI IRWIN WIENER Guest Writer

Brother against brother was demonstrated so vividly just 156 years ago. Hundreds of thousands of our countrymen were killed or wounded. The nation was torn apart and really has never fully recovered. In a most stirring speech, President Lincoln used some of the immortal words from our Declaration of Independence at the dedication of the Gettysburg battlefield: “Our fathers brought upon this continent a new nation, conceived in liberty and dedicated to the proposition that all men were created equal.” He reminded us of the words penned by Thomas Jefferson in a stirring, heartwrenching description of the cost of liberty. Throughout the ages, our leaders have attempted to bring to our attention the very essence of our existence, emphasizing the evils of slavery, but also including the terrible ordeals of antagonistic vitriol regarding religion and nationality. After all, are we not descendants of immigrants? Perhaps George Washington said it best in his famous letter to the Hebrew Congregation of Newport, Rhode Island, “For happily the Government of the United States gives to bigotry no sanction, to persecution no assistance.” If history has taught us anything,

it is that human beings are capable of unimaginable atrocities. World War ll made it abundantly clear that we seem to have a sordid need for annihilation. Between World War l and World War ll, over 60 million people perished by the sword. What a tragic reminder of what hate unabated can lead to. That was then. What about now? Today we are experiencing a resurgence of past atrocities. The most violent form of destructive bigotry pits neighbor against neighbor. History is eradicated because it offends and neglects the essence of our origins. Name-calling, shouting down those who disagree with our concepts, maiming or killing individuals because of the color of their skin or the faith they practice has become the norm once more. The flames of unchallenged hatred prevail in our society as never before or maybe not. If we look back at the growth and development of this magnificent edifice to the ideals established by sweat and sacrifice, we will see its desecration on many occasions. We may appear to be a little more sophisticated, but hate is hate, no matter when, no matter where. It appears that this frustration and the explosion of feelings have developed much stronger over the last 10 years.

Perhaps some of our expressions are determined by guilt. Perhaps some of our meaning is a result of no middle ground, no room for compromise. Perhaps what we are witnessing is nothing more than the disappointment resulting from one step forward and two steps back. Perhaps because we are human we cannot seem to reach the path to understanding the values we inherited. Perhaps faith has been dissipated to the point of no return, as our houses of worship remain empty, as do our hearts. We can utter the words to rally our comrades. We can rely on the Book of Books to remind us of our moral responsibilities. We can recite verse and chapter of the admonitions for civility and human allegiance. What we do not seem to be able to do is take the words and mold them into character, and in turn to love for one another. How sad that the few, a minority, have not only become mainstream, but also have been able to bring out the savage beast in us. How sad that this country founded on the principles laid out for us by the Prophets of old as they too attempted to relate the message given to us by God about equality and brotherly love, seem to have been lost waiting to be found once more. The Heavens are weeping, waiting for us

Special to SanTan Sun News

Rabbi Irwin Wiener, D.D.

to realize what we are doing to ourselves without regard for the generations that most assuredly will follow. I wonder what kind of a world they will find. I pray that God will be part of it. We were created in love and we are loved even now. Can we return that love? -Rabbi Irwin Weiner, DD, is spiritual leader of the Sun Lakes Jewish Congregation.

God’s challenge: Embrace, not Women’s Bible study in Sun ignore, someone else’s story Lakes examines ancient times BY LYNNE HARTKE Guest Writer

When we were two years into grandparenting, I realized it was long past time to buy our own baby things for when the grandchildren visited. Before purchasing a Pack ‘N Play, I decided to check out Craigslist, but the equipment in the ads looked old and worn. I popped up one more ad that advertised the collapsible crib as “like new.” The pics looked promising, the house was in my ZIP code, and the seller promised to take $10 off the price. I headed over. A young woman greeted me – all long legs and willowy arms with straight blond hair pulled back in a ponytail. “Do you want to see it set up?” she asked as we headed into their garage. As she unpacked, unrolled and popped open the Pack ‘N Play, I realized it didn’t just look new, it was new. Never used. “Why do you have a new Pack ‘N Play?” I asked. She looked up briefly, eyes shadowed by falling hair. “The baby died,” she said. She said it clinically. Brief. Short. But I heard the bandage over a gaping wound being torn off. “I’m so sorry.” “It’s OK.” But it was not OK. I knew. Two-plus decades later, I remembered the words, “I’m sorry, Mrs. Hartke, but we can’t find a heartbeat.” I remembered leaving the hospital overwhelmed by grief, angry

that the sun still dared to shine. But I said none of this to her. I didn’t mention my own loss or pain. I didn’t offer hope or speak of faith. My tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth as I found myself tiptoeing away from her pain. I pulled out my bills and unfolded the cash. I drove home. “Did you offer to pray for her?” my husband asked me later, the extrovert who lives a green light life – unlike me, the analyzing introvert who lives with a yellow light on her soul. A caution. A pause. A reluctance to invade someone else’s space. That caution is my constant wrestling point, where I try to push words around my guarded personality. I wait, yellowlight cautious and the moment is so often lost. This is my challenge – not to be an extrovert, but when I feel that nudge, that prompting of God, to take a step forward, not a step back. To embrace, not ignore, someone else’s story. To live the yes. Jesus, God with us. God in man, not just one step into humanity’s story, but all in. Fully human, yet fully God. God all in to mess and pain and confusion of earthly life. Jesus came wearing baby skin. As an image bearer of God, I come with skin – his hands, his feet, his touch in a world of painful stories. And somehow, some way, God moves through me – a person, yellow light cautious in this world of hurting people. This. Yeah, this. Amazes me. – Chandler author Lynne Hartke, a pastor’s wife, writes often on spiritual matters:


A Friday evening Bible study in Sun Lakes has been studying women of the Bible. This group is led by Robin Lotz, wife of Tim Lotz, associate pastor at Oasis of Grace Assembly of God in Sun Lakes. This study focuses on important women and their function in Bible times and leads to a greater knowledge of them and their ministry. A key verse in understanding the importance of women in the eyes of God is found in Galatians 3:28: “There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” After reading God's word many times, Robin found herself filled with not only curiosity but also many questions about the women of the Bible. She found several interesting facts: The women are now over 3,000 years old. They dressed different; they spoke different; they looked different. She often wondered what she could possibly have in common with these individuals of so long ago. As she began praying and asking God to show her, the clearer it became. It all started in the Garden of Eden. Genesis 2:22 states: "Then the Lord God made a woman from the rib He had taken out of man and He brought her to the man.” She is known as Eve, but it's much more than that. Eve was definitely a woman of unique distinction in so many ways from all the other women who have ever lived. She has many “firsts” to her credit. She was the first woman to live on the Earth. She was the first

woman to be called a wife. She was perfect and so was the most beautiful woman the world has ever known. She was the first and only woman made without sin. She was the first to be assailed by Satan resulting in her becoming the first dressmaker. She was the first mother to have a son who became a murderer and finally, she was the first to receive a divine prophecy of the Cross. Each woman studied by this group has many, many interesting facts but we are finding that all women are woven and threaded together by God. There are 93 women mentioned in the Bible and we are enjoying the study of each of them. The ladies study group is held on the first Friday evening of each month beginning at 6:30. Light refreshments are served before the study begins. All women interested in learning more about the women in the Bible are invited to join in a powerful, fun, and relaxing evening. In the fast and constantly changing world we live in, women's lives are full; perhaps too full. We fill the demands of time on us each day leading us to become run down, exhausted, and burned out. We can praise God for His unfailing love. He gave us His son, Jesus Christ. We can find great comfort knowing that no matter what we have been through or will continue to experience, Jesus is the anchor of our hope. He will never leave nor forsake us. We love Him because He first loved Us. For information about the study group and the address where they meet, contact Pastor Gary Nibbelink at 319-464-2872.




Spiritual Connections Call ahead to confirm as details occasionally change after print. If you have a recurring monthly support group or meeting to list in Spiritual Connections, email complete details to

SUNDAYS Celebration Service 10:30 a.m. Sundays All with peaceful beliefs are welcome to this inclusive, loving, thriving UNITY Community. Join the group at 10 a.m., preceeding the service, for fellowship. Youth and toddlers meet during service. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa 480-593-8798, Kids’ Sunday School 10 to 11 a.m. Sundays Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 Lift Your Spirit 10 a.m. Sundays Hear inspirational messages and music. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 Traditional and Contemporary Services 7:30 a.m. daybreak contemplative worship, 9 a.m. traditional worship and choral music,

11 a.m. contemporary worship with live Christian rock band. There is also a service at 12 p.m. Wednesdays. St. Matthew’s Episcopal Church, 901 W. Erie Street, Chandler 480-899-7386, MONDAYS The Art of Parenting 7:30 p.m. Mondays Six-session course from the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute and presented by Rabbi Mendy Deitsch of Chabad of the East Valley, designed to help parents at all levels of Jewish knowledge develop their own parenting philosophies and techniques. Cost is $99. Pollack Chabad Center for Jewish Life 875 N. McClintock Drive, Chandler 480-855-4333, TUESDAYS Silva Class and Meditation 6:30 to 8 p.m. Tuesdays Learn the Silva method with Lois Britland. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800

Sun Lakes Jewish Congregation invites you to worship with us on Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. free tickets for the High Holidays if you have not been a member here before. For information call: Betty Dar 480-882-9022 or Jeff Spear 480-556-1284

Career Connectors 8:30 a.m. to noon, fourth Tuesday of month Nonprofit organization connecting professionals in career transition to high-quality resources and hiring companies; each event includes professional career speakers with presentations on relevant job search topics, three to four hiring companies, networking, resume help, career coaches, LinkedIn coaches and business portraits. Central Christian Church, Gilbert Campus/Student Center, 965 E. Germann Road, Gilbert 480-442-5806, Christian Business Networking, Tri-City Chapter – Chandler, Tempe, Mesa 7:15 a.m. Tuesdays Offers members the opportunity to share ideas, contacts and business referrals. Crackers and Co. Café, 535 W. Iron Avenue, Mesa Maia, 480-425-0624, Christian Business Networking, Chandler Bi-Monthly Chapter 7:45 a.m. second and fourth Tuesdays each month Offers members the opportunity to share ideas, contacts and business referrals. Chandler Christian Church, Building B, Room 202 1825 S. Alma School Road, Chandler Maia, 480-425-0624, HOPE—Help Overcoming Painful Experiences 7 p.m. Tuesdays Free weekly small-group sessions helping people overcome emotional pain caused by divorce, grief, addictions and more; free child care for children ages 10 and younger. Desert Springs Church 19620 S. McQueen Road, Room 106, Chandler, Shalom Chapter of Hadassah 11:30 a.m. second Tuesday of each month Iron Oaks (Oakwood) Clubhouse 24218 S. Oakwood Boulevard, Sun Lakes Cyril, 480-802-0243; Kathy, 480-895-5194; Shirley, 480883-9159; or Joyce, 480-802-4902. Monthly Women’s Fellowship 6:15 p.m. fourth Tuesday of each month The monthly fellowship Bible study with the East Valley Chapter of Christian Women’s Devotional Alliance “ministers to women’s spiritual, emotional and physical needs.” Best Western-Mezona, 250 W. Main Street, Mesa 480-232-3773 Narcotics Anonymous (Nar-Anon), Chandler Chapter 7 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays Twelve-step program for families and friends of addicts. Faith Community Church 1125 N. Dobson Road, Chandler, WEDNESDAYS

Receive a 15-minute energetic tuneup. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 Gong Meditation and Yoga Nidra 7 to 8:30 p.m. third Wednesday Presented by Will Zecco, gong master. Bring yoga mat, blanket and pillow as desired. Love offerings will be accepted. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center, 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa 480-593-8798, “A Course in Miracles” with the Rev. Julianne Lewis 1 to 2:15 p.m. Wednesdays The weekly group is an interactive time of learning and sharing, appropriate for course beginners, as well as longtime students of ACIM. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa 480-593-8798, The Art of Parenting 9:30 a.m. Wednesdays Six-session course from the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute and presented by Rabbi Mendy Deitsch of Chabad of the East Valley, designed to help parents at all levels of Jewish knowledge develop their own parenting philosophies and techniques. Cost is $99. Chandler Jewish Community Center 908 N. Alma School Road, Chandler 480-855-4333 or Grief Care 6:45 p.m. Wednesdays A place to come share your feelings or just listen to others as we try to navigate through our grief. You don’t have to do it alone. Epiphany Lutheran Church, South Campus, old church building, 800 W. Ray Road, Room 325, Chandler Healing Prayer and Meditation Circle 7 to 8:15 p.m. Wednesdays Guided prayer, affirmations and visualization for those facing physical, emotional, mental or spiritual issues in their lives. Love offering requested. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 Meditation Moments 7 to 8:30 p.m. third Wednesday of the month An interactive time of learning and sharing, appropriate for beginners or longtime students of ACIM. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa 480-593-8798, St. Mathew’s Episcopal Church 12 p.m. Healing and Eucharist service St. Mathew’s Episcopal Church 901 W. Erie Street, Chandler 480-899-7386,

Panic Healing 7 to 9 p.m. every Wednesday See

SLJC is an established Reform congregation with more than 430 members who meet at the Sun Lakes Chapel on the 2nd Friday of each month beginning in October at 7:30 p.m. Membership - SLJC dues are $175 per person which includes a High Holiday ticket. Additional tickets for guests may be purchased. Contact Bety Dar at 480-882-9022 or Jeff Spear at 480-556-1284.


• Services • High Holiday Services • Choir • Mens Club • Sisterhood • Interfaith Activities • Bar/Bat Mitzvah lessons • Israel Commitee


CONNECTIONS from page 66 THURSDAYS Women’s Empowerment & Awakening 7 to 8:30 p.m. third Thursday Release negative beliefs. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 A Course in Miracles 7 p.m. first, second and fourth Thursday Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 Empower Model for Men 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays The three-class series is taught by author Scott E. Clark and designed to offer practical wisdom and tools to help men shift into their higher consciousness, based on the seven-step empower model detailed in Clark’s book, “Empower Model for Men.” Cost is $85. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road,, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800 Real Love Support Group 6:30 p.m. Thursdays For those who have a desire to acquire more “real love” and in the process find great personal happiness and more fulfilling relationships. Love offering requested. Unity of Tempe, formerly Unity of Chandler 1222 E. Baseline Road, Suite 103, Tempe 480-792-1800

grief and understand its effects and the steps toward healing. Each week a different stand-alone topic is presented as part of 13 sessions. Discussion follows, but participation is entirely voluntary. Call 480-895-1088 for information. The program is offered at First Baptist Church Sun Lakes. SATURDAYS


Spirit Night – Psychic Fair 4 to 8 p.m. third Saturday of each month The “Lightworkers” offer a wide range of services, including Reiki, facials, mediums, drumming, tarot, angel messages and more. Services range from $20 to $30. Cash only. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa Spirit Night – A Holistic Healing Festival 1 to 6 p.m. third Saturday of the month Lightworkers offer a wide range of services including Reiki, facials, mediums, drumming, tarot, angel messages and more. Services range from $20 to $30. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa Unity Drumming and Healing Circle 6:30 to 8 p.m. fourth Saturday of

Forever Marriage Ministries Marriage Restoration Support Group for Wives Offers hope to the hurting Valleywide through oneon-one Biblical marriage teaching, God-honoring wife discipleship and marriage restoration mentoring to wives seeking God’s will in the restoration of marriage. Lisa, 602-377-8847,,, Jewish Women International, Avodah Chapter 1581 Monthly luncheon. Social Box Eateries, 1371 N. Alma School Road, Chandler RSVP: 480-802-9304, 480-655-8812 Moms in Prayer International A group of mothers who meet one hour each week to intercede for their children and schools through prayer. Liane Wright, 480-699-7887, Bible Study Meets twice a month Members of the Women’s Life Group study the Bible and discuss how the lessons can relate to their lives.

Chandler United Methodist Church

FRIDAYS Temple Havurat Emet 7:30 p.m. first Friday of each month Lecky Center, Robson Library 9330 E. Riggs Road, Sun Lakes Grief 10 to 11:30 a.m. every Friday Each session presents a 45-minute videotape of expertise of counselors, pastors and others who have coped with

each month Beginner, expert drummers and observers welcome. Bring snack, appetizer or dessert to share. Love donation accepted. Interfaith CommUNITY Spiritual Center 952 E. Baseline Road, Suite 102, Mesa 480-593-8798,

Making and Deploying Disciples for over 100 Years.

Open hearts. Open minds. Open doors. SUNDAY WORSHIP


9 a.m. & 10:30 a.m.

9:10 a.m. & 10:40 a.m.


For Children


480-963-3360 | | 450 E. Chandler Heights Rd.

FirstFirst Baptist Church, Chandler Baptist Chandler 480-963-3439  480-963-3439




Sunday Schedule Sunday Worship - 9:00Schedule a.m. / 10:30 a.m. Worship 9:00 a.m. / 10:30 a.m.a.m. Sunday School - 9:00 a.m. / 10:30 SundaySpanish School -Worship 9:00 a.m. / 10:30 - 12 Noon a.m. Spanish Worship - 12 Noon Wednesday Activities at 6:30 p.m. Wednesday Students Refuge, Activities Choir Rehearsal, Activities will resume August Bible Studies (Meal atin5:30 p.m.)




Sun Lakes United Church of Christ, Chandler. Jan Olson: 480-802-7457, Joy King 480-588-1882 East Valley Jewish Couples Club Offers once-a-month social activities such as dining, movies and plays for Jewish couples in the 45- to 65-yearold age range. Melissa, 480-785-0744, Let us help you publicize your church or temple’s events in the Spirituality section by emailing details to Include a brief description of the event, times, days, dates, cost or free, if registration is required, venue, address, publishable phone number, website if applicable and contact information for verification purposes. We welcome photos, which must be 300 dpi JPEGs or taken on a digital camera on the “best” or “highest quality” setting. Information is due 10 days prior to publication date. Submission does not guarantee placement.

First Baptist Church of Sun Lakes A Church of Joy Committed to the perfect Word of God, living under the Lordship of Jesus Christ, and worshiping with psalms, hymns and spiritual songs.

Dr. Marc Drake, Senior Pastor invites you to join in our traditional worship service at 9535 E. Riggs Road Sun Lakes, Arizona 85248

480-895-1088 Sundays:

Bible Study: 8:30 am | Worship: 10:00 am Wednesday: Prayer & Bible Study: 6:30 pm





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Wild Horse Pass top chef juggles kitchen, office work whose brother and sister are also doctors, Romig for a time worked in a hospital operating room, taking care of instruments during surgeries. Ronald “Chip” Romig Jr. is as comfortable Then, finally motivated by the memories with a spreadsheet and calculator as he is of his grandmother’s cooking, he made the with a frying pan and spatula. leap to culinary school and got his first job He has to be. cracking string beans for a small restaurant As executive chef for Wild Horse Pass Caand ending up at a restaurant outside Philly sino, he ultimately is responsible for all the gaming complex’s restaurants, from the high- where he served stars like Robert Goulet, Harvey Korman and Tim Conway. end Shula’s Steak House to the food court. “I’ve been to a lot of great places,” he said. One minute he might be presiding over a Dover sole was one of his first dishes he menu-planning meeting, the next tasting the prepared as a chef, though he recalls as a latest dishes his team developed. youngster how his grandfather gave him a “For me, it’s really a 24-hour-a-day job,” he box of Chef Boyardee pizza mix and told said. “The phone on my nightstand rings all him to have at it. night long. There are closing reports every Now he ensures that Wild Horse visitors night… And if something happens, like a power enjoy their lunches, dinners or brunches.. failure, God forbid, I get the call.” “It’s all about time management,” the “I just don’t spend time in the kitchen,” Romig noted. “I actually do have office work.” cheerful chef remarked. “My time is split up between this restaurant and that restaurant.” Before he got his position in February His time is also split among a number of 2014, Romig pretty much fed people in a duties, both in the kitchen and the office. wide variety of settings, gradually taking “I am in charge of everything food,” he on the office work in addition to kitchen said. “I am involved with ordering, watchresponsibilities. He’s worked for small restaurants and bou- ing over production. I oversee each of the executive chefs at each restaurant. I have tique hotels from Florida to Philadelphia on the East Coast, served as chef for the Disney biweekly meetings to discuss menu develcomplex in Orlando and even oversaw meal opment, special menus, events.” Despite his busy schedule, Romig makes preparation for the San Diego Chargers, sure he spends time with all his staff, wheththeir support personnel (from cheerleaders er they be cooks, servers or food preparers. to sportswriters) and the fans who showed “I’m in every single kitchen every single day, up at their stadium. The Philadelphia native, who grew up next whether it’s to watch dinner or lunch service or graveyard in the cafe,” he explained. door to the late New Year’s Eve host and “I’m pretty hands-on. It shows my team “American Bandstand” icon Dick Clark and members I am just not a figurehead. I’m also near the home of TV personality Ed McMainvolved with their lives. It makes for great hon, didn’t start out in the kitchen. teamwork.” The son of a surgeon and a physican His baby is Shula’s, an eight-year presence at Wild Horse that is part of the high-end chain started by Don Shula, the legendary Miami Dolphins coach who in 1972 guided the only NFL team with an undefeated season – a record it still holds today. Though Shula’s corporate office dictates menus and recipes – and runs its own slaughterhouses – Romig still finds time Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer to visit the slaughter The surf ’n’ turf at Shula’s Steak House includes grilled scallops and filet mignon. operation in Las VeBY PAUL MARYNIAK Executive Editor

Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer

Ronald “Chip” Romig Jr., executive chef for Wild Horse Pass Casino, holds two scrumptious dishes from Shula’s Steak House, a dinner salad and a burger made from three cuts of beef.

gas to watch how butchers cut meat to the time for it to rest after being cooked. exacting standards developed by the chain’s Though he calls his job “a labor of love,” parent office. he cautions: “It’s not for the faint of heart.” He looks at meat in a variety of ways: “ViYoung chefs face a long, hard climb sion, taste, texture.” Indeed, he approaches through the industry ranks, he noted. most of his dishes with those three characThat’s a lesson the programs on the Food teristics in mind. Network might not teach enough. That attention to detail has paid off: For “I interview young culinarians and they the sixth consecutive year, Shula’s at Wild expect to be this Food Network star and Horse Pass has won the Award of Excellence make a million dollars,” he said. “This is a lot from Wine Spectator’s Restaurant Awards. of work.” It also has won a Readers Choice Award Reservations: 520-796-1972, or as one of the top 100 steak houses in the country – a big deal when you consider there are about 25,000 of them in the U.S. And he talks with enthusiasm about Shula’s entrees, warning dinner guests that they should expect an experience that properly should take about two hours and 15 minutes to allow for cart presentations, Kimberly Carrillo/Staff Photographer adequate preparaShula’s Steak House at Wild Horse Pass Casino offers a quiet retreat for tion of the meat and diners looking for quality food and an intimate atmosphere.

Chompie’s, Grimaldi’s helping children this month Two Chandler restaurants are helping children all this month when customers order from their menu. The Chandler Grimaldi’s Pizzeria, 7131 W. Ray Road, in The Shoppes at Casa Paloma, is supporting Share Our Strength’s No Kid Hungry in honor of Hunger Awareness Month. No Kid Hungry is a nonprofit devoted to ending childhood hunger in the United States. Patrons who donate up to $10 to No Kid Hungry at Grimaldi’s will receive the equivalent amount in bonus cards for

the pizzeria, a limit of one per customer per visit, which they can use on their next visit. All proceeds will go to No Kid Hungry. In honor of Childhood Cancer Awareness Month, which runs through the end of September, Chompie’s at 3481 W. Frye Road will donate $1 from every entrée ordered on its special new menu to Singleton Moms, a local nonprofit organization. see

HELPING page 74

Special to SanTan Sun News

Buying this pizza from Chandler Grimaldi’s will help fight childhood hunger.



Where Kids Eat Free Chompie’s

3481 W. Frye Road, Chandler 480-398-3008, Children 10 and younger receive one free item from the kids’ meal menu with an adult meal purchase of $8 or more on Tuesdays. Dine-in only.

Copper Still Moonshine Grill

2531 S. Gilbert Road, Suite 101, Gilbert 480-656-1476 Kids ages 10 and younger eat for free on Tuesdays with the purchase of an adult meal.

El Palacio Restaurant & Cantina

Floridino’s Pizza & Pasta

590 N. Alma School Road, Suite 35, Chandler 480-812-8433, Kids eat free from 4 to 9 p.m. Wednesdays. Receive one free kids’ meal per $8 adult purchase when customers dine in only.

The Hungry Monk

Pittsburgh Willy’s

48 S. San Marcos Place, Chandler 480-821-3197 Every day except Sunday breakfast, one child 10 or younger eats free with each paying adult, while additional kids eat for 50 percent off when they order from the Wee Willy menu only.

Andersen Fiesta Shopping Center, 1760 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler 480-963-8000 Kids eat free on Mondays with every purchase of an adult entrée.

Planet Sub

NYPD Pizza

1371 N. Alma School Road, Chandler 480-899-6735, Kids 12 and younger eat free from the kids’ menu with the purchase of an adult entrée on Mondays.

2950 E. Germann Road, Chandler 480-802-5770, Kids 12 and younger eat free when adult meals are purchased on Wednesdays.

2580 W. Chandler Boulevard, Chandler 480-722-0898, Kids eat free on Wednesday and Sunday after 4 p.m. with the purchase of a small or medium pizza. Dine-in only.

The SanTan Sun News now has a regular section called “Where Kids Eat Free.” Restaurant owners, please email us details such as days of the week kids can eat free at your establishment, and what

conditions apply, such as purchase of an adult meal, certain hours, etc. Include your restaurant name, address, phone and website and a contact name for verification. Readers, if you know of a location

Sidelines Grill

2980 S. Alma School Road, Chandler 480-792-6965, Kids eat free from the kids’ menu after 4 p.m. Thursdays with the purchase of an adult entrée. Dine-in only.

1920 W. Germann Road, Chandler 480-245-6503, Kids eat free with a paying adult on Mondays.

Social Box

that has a kids-eat-free program, email us with the restaurant name, a phone and/or email for confirmation and details. Email information to

Date Night

Every Night of the week at...

Special Dinner Menu ONLY $33

per person


Insalata Mista or Pasta e Fagioli


Pollo al Marsala | Salmone alla Griglia | Tagliatelle Toscana


Nutella Ricotta Cheese Cake or Limoncello Flute


Glass of House Red or White

Valid June through September • NO SUBSTITUTIONS






omelet for $12 and Classic Grandpa Ruby’s Reuben for $17. Throughout the year, Chompie’s also donates some proceeds from kids’ meals to help local families in which someone has cancer. Information:,,

Singleton Moms helps area single parents who are fighting cancer, as well as their minor children by helping with everyday, practical needs including groceries, supplies and financial help. The deli’s special menu offers Josh’s whole grain French toast for $7, a fitness

Photo courtesy of

Scramble prides itself on using local farmers and vendors whenever possible.

Fast-casual Scramble opening Chandler location SANTAN SUN NEWS STAFF

A popular fast casual breakfast and lunch restaurant is opening in Chandler. Scramble is expected to open next spring at 7131 W. Ray Road in The Shoppes at Casa Paloma. The eatery is also opening a new location at 2375 E. Camelback Road in December. “We’re not only thrilled to enhance Scramble’s footprint in the Valley overall, but we’re excited to finally expand our concept to the East Valley and to also have a new Phoenix location in the dynamic Biltmore Corridor,” said Scramble co-owner Clay Moizo. The contemporary appearance and

fresh ingredients found at Scramble’s other locations will also be part of the new spots in Chandler and Phoenix. Scramble’s menu includes its popular “brizza,” a breakfast pizza, as well as eggs Benedict, French toast, breakfast burritos, steak and eggs, buttermilk biscuits and gravy, omelets and vegan items. Wraps, brunch sammies, salads and other lunch meals will also be offered at the new Scramble’s locations. Customers enjoy beer, wine and limited specialty cocktails. Scramble offers free Wi-Fi and charging stations, as well as dog-friendly patios and LED TVs. Information:

Special to SanTan Sun News

Buying this salad at Chompie’s in Chandler will help parents battling cancer.

Happy Hour Mon-Fri 2-6pm Brunch Sat-Sun 9am-2pm Mondays - Bourbon & Burgers. $3 off select bourbons w/purchase of a burger. 4pm-close Tuesdays - Whiskey Wednesday Tuesday (We couldn’t wait!) $3 off all whiskey all day Wednesday - Wine Down Wednesday. 1/2 priced wines all day (bottle and glass) Thur-Sat - Live music on the rooftop 7-10pm

232 S. Wall St. Chandler, AZ 85225 HOURS:

Mon-Fri open at 11am Sat-Sun open at 9am


% 20 OFF Lunch

(from 11am-4pm Monday thru Friday)

a taste of the pacific




“...this is a tasty bit of the “reel” deal.” - Phoenix Magazine “It’s a little piece of paradise.” - Arizona Republic 1155 W OCOTILLO RD, SUITE 1 • CHANDLER, AZ 85248

480•247•7900 • COCONUTSAZ.COM