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By the morning of Friday, June 24, the Cedar Wildfire, located southwest of Show Low and Pinetop-Lakeside, east of Highway 60 on the Fort Apache Indian Reservation, was 42 percent contained.With a capacity of 15,000 gallons, a helicopter fights the Cedar Fire from the sky. Two members of the Verde Valley Fire District were dispatched to the fire, charged with making sure there was enough water for the helicopter.

Among the nearly 1,000 personnel attending to the fire, two members of the Verde Valley Fire District were hard at work, making sure the 15,000-gallon capacity helicopter had enough water to continue dousing the approximately 46,000-acre blaze.

The Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce is losing its president and CEO, Lana Tolleson.Lana Tolleson has served as the president and CEO of the Cottonwood Chamber of Commerce for nearly a decade. Now Tolleson is stepping down from the position, as her family is moving to Texas.

In charge of the organization during one of the city’s greatest periods of economic growth — what some might even call a cultural revitalization, due in no small part to the ascendancy of the wine industry — Tolleson has labored for the past seven-and-a-half years to place Cottonwood on the map.

Former Cottonwood City Council member Randy Garrison is running as one of two Republican candidates for Yavapai County Supervisor District 3. Recently, he answered three questions pertaining to his family’s history of public service and his current bid with the county.Randy Garrison is one of two Republican candidates for Yavapai County Supervisor District 3, representing the Sedona and Cottonwood areas of the Verde Valley. Garrison is a fifth-generation Verde Valley resident, the descendant of pioneers to the region.

“We all know the issues we face,” Garrison stated in introduction. “They include water, transportation, growth and an aging demographic, overloaded infrastructure, high levels of poverty and threatened natural resources. We face them with the challenges of limited resources, a slowly rebounding economy, rising costs and a state legislature that diverts relied upon funding while steadily removing local control.

“Add to all of that the necessity of working with four other county supervisors in a cooperative and effective manner.”

A mandatory water restriction is in place in Jerome.Jerome Town Hall

Approved by a majority vote of the Jerome Town Council Wednesday, June 22, Resolution 537 imposes "restrictions on water irrigation and sprinkling" and declares an emergency.
The stated reason for doing so reads, "the town is currently experiencing a water shortage due, in large part, to extended drought conditions."

Even small towns are not immune to this national election season’s partisan politics.Arizona State Sen. Sylvia Allen [R-District 6] spoke about education and defended her vote against publication of public notices.

On June 14, three Republican legislators representing Arizona’s Legislative District 6 addressed members of the Mingus Mountain Republican Club, offering pointed criticisms of Democratic party officials and policy.

City of Cottonwood Mayor Diane Joens is running for Yavapai County Supervisor District 3. Recently, she discussed what compels her to seek public office with the county.Diane Joens

After a nationwide search, St. Joseph’s Catholic School has named its new principal: Jackie Kirkham.Jill Barteau, left, and Jackie Kirkham stand together in front of a statue of St. Joseph. Barteau is the new preschool director at St. Joseph’s Catholic School, and Kirkham is the new principal. The school itself will soon be renamed to Immaculate Conception Catholic School, to match the parish it sits next to.

Kirkham replaces her husband, Greg Kirkham, who will be retiring as of the start of the 2016-17 school year. Greg Kirkham acted as principal for the previous eight years, overseeing numerous changes including the school’s move in the fall of 2015 to the property adjacent to Immaculate Conception Catholic Church.

One of the lasting legacies of the mining industry is that people don’t think of Cottonwood as a food-producing region.Nancy Gottschalk presents “Reveal the Bounty: Food Mapping for Cottonwood and Community,” one of 80 ArtPlace America 2016 National Creative Placemaking Fund finalist projects, eligible for a portion of an allocated $10.5 million. The project would help Gottschalk increase participation in Cottonwood’s local food system.

The truth, according to local food researcher Nancy Gottschalk, is that the area is steeped in the traditions of horticulture.

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