Print Centennial committee works tirelessly toward February
Written by Greg Ruland   
Tuesday, 15 November 2011 00:00

Time grows short before the Arizona centennial celebration Tuesday, Feb. 14, but Yavapai County Arizona Centennial Committee has all the pieces in place for a memorable event.

When bells ring out across the county at 2:14 p.m. Feb. 14, announcing the 100th birthday of the Grand Canyon State, it will be the culmination of the committee’s work, which started in 2008, said Yavapai County District 3 committee member Mary Liggit of Cottonwood.

Image courtesy USPS The U.S. Postal Service announced the design for the Arizona Centennial stamp Sept. 17, selecting a stylized image of Cathedral Rock in Sedona to honor the state. The stamp will be affixed to special centennial greeting cards designed by students and specially postmarked as a first day issue on Tuesday, Feb. 14, Arizona’s 100th birthday.“We wanted to get started early to make sure we had some good ideas going,” Liggit said.

Liggit’s brainchild, an envelope with a cache mark designed by area schoolchildren, evolved into a greeting card with a historical theme designed by area schoolchildren. Students with the winning design were honored in three categories Monday, Nov. 7.

Winning designs will be published on greeting cards and sold through Yavapai County School Superintendent Tim Carter’s office in the same way Christmas cards were published and sold in the past.

In addition, all of the original designs will be collected and delivered to the post office, where a first-day postmark will be affixed on Feb. 14, along with the state’s official centennial stamp, then mailed to the students who created them.

The design for the centennial stamp, announced Sept. 17, focuses on a view of Cathedral Rock in Sedona.

U.S. postal officials assured the committee post offices in Arizona will have plenty of the centennial stamps on hand by the Feb. 14 deadline, Liggit said.

Another Yavapai County District 3 committee member, Bill Cowan of Camp Verde, saw his vision for a Monument in a Box reach fruition to become an officially sanctioned legacy event.

Cowan figured out a way for even the smallest Arizona town to celebrate the state’s centennial with a monumental gesture that can endure for generations. Packaging and a stable, reasonable price are key to the plan.

Cowan’s Monument in a Box Project fits the goals of the committee because it educates residents and tourists alike about the state’s colorful past, Cowan said.

The standardized monuments can be placed in town squares, parks, along roadways, at historic sites, historic trailheads and other locations where they can be appreciated during the centennial year and beyond, he said.

Six applicants, two in each of the three supervisory districts, may be awarded up to $500 by the centennial committee to pay for the construction of a legacy monument.

The monument consists of a flagstone tablet with an approved inscription mounted using portland cement, cinder blocks and stone facing according to a simple design.

Labor necessary to erect the monument must be supplied by the organization seeking committee approval.

Finally, in September, Yavapai County Board of Supervisors unanimously designated a type of treasure hunt as one of the official projects of the Yavapai County Arizona Centennial Committee.

Known as 48 Historic Caches Across Arizona, the project engages amateur geocachers, people who use global positioning systems to find things, to stash containers holding historic information in a variety of locations around the state.

The longitude and latitude coordinates of 47 of the cache sites will be published at Once a geocacher finds all 47, they will email confirmation of their finds to county volunteers, who will verify the accomplishment and respond with coordinates where the 48th cache can be located.

The first geocacher to locate all 48 will have his or her name inscribed on a plaque presented to Yavapai County, probably sometime in March, Committee Chairwoman Ann Sterling said.