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The Camp Verde Journal looks back at 2010
Written by Mark Lineberger   
Thursday, 30 December 2010 00:00

As another year comes to a close, The Camp Verde Journal looks back on the events that made the headlines in 2010. While there are still a few days left in December for something earth-shattering to happen, quite a bit has already taken place since we said goodbye to 2009.

There was finally closure to a long-running legal battle between the town and a local wood yard. There were efforts by local government and citizens to keep the heart of the town, Fort Verde, open in the midst of trying financial times. There were elections, sports victories and defeats and plenty of people who worked hard to improve the community. Here’s a look at some of the issues that made 2010 the year that was in Camp Verde:

January

Danny Howe was nominated to eventually take over duties as principal of Camp Verde Middle School, replacing part-time principal Russ Snider, the former principal of Sedona Red Rock High School. Snider had been serving as principal since former principal Dan Brown was promoted to superintendent of the Camp Verde Unified School District.

With state budget cuts threatening the future of Fort Verde State Historic Park, the Camp Verde Town Council offered $36,000 to Arizona State Parks in order to keep the fort open through July.

Military drills and information about life at Fort Verde State Historic Park, during its years of use were the activities of the fort's annual History of the Soldier weekend in April. Town funding and volunteer efforts kep the fort open when Arizona state park's funding fell through.The Camp Verde Town Council reconsidered the future of the 1980s-era Rio Verde shopping center on Main Street. The town-owned property had been slated for demolition after the town decided to get out of the commercial property business, but the council decided to save the building for future renovations to serve as needed government office space, an alternative to some of the town’s current aging buildings.

James Bleicher was appointed president of the Verde Valley Medical Center. Bleicher had served as vice president of medical affairs with the organization since 2007.

Camp Verde escaped the worst from a winter storm system, even though initial predictions had called for flooding potentially worse than the storms of 1993.

February

James Arthur Ray, motivational speaker and self-help author, was arrested after turning himself into authorities in Prescott. Ray was charged with three counts of manslaughter stemming from a fatal sweat lodge incident the previous October at a resort outside of Sedona. James Arthur Ray, motivational speaker and self-help author, was arrested after turning himself into authorities in Prescott. Ray was charged with three counts of manslaughter stemming from a fatal sweat lodge incident the previous October at a resort outside of Sedona. Ray’s trial is set to begin February 2011.

Camp Verde Unified School District Director of Operations Chris Schultz outlined a potential $1.3 million plan to upgrade the district’s energy efficiency, based on the results of an energy audit conducted by consultants with APS. The plan looked at everything from light bulbs to more efficient climate control.

The town came up with a $75,000 arrangement with Arizona State Parks that, along with a local volunteer effort, promised to keep Fort Verde State Historic Park open through March 2011.

The Yavapai-Apache Nation remembered the anniversary of Exodus, the 1875 forced removal of Yavapai and Apache from their local lands and their arduous three-day march to the San Carlos Reservation 180 miles away. The natives were not allowed to return back to the Verde Valley for 25 years.

The Yavapai-Apache nation shared just over $80,000 of its casino gaming revenue with the Town of Camp Verde, money the town spent on a Native American tutoring program, slated to eventually help build a new library and used to help keep the local town-owned swimming pool open for the summer.The Yavapai-Apache nation shared just over $80,000 of its casino gaming revenue with the Town of Camp Verde, money the town spent on a Native American tutoring program, slated to eventually help build a new library and used to help keep the local town-owned swimming pool open for the summer.

Former Camp Verde Town Manager Mike Scannell, who held the position since October 2007, accepted a job offer in Chino Valley.

March

A donation of $50,000 brought the Citizens Committee for the Camp Verde Library, a nonprofit dedicated to the construction of a new library, that much closer to their goal.

The South Verde High School girl’s volleyball team defeated Leupp to win their first championship title.

The annual Verde River Canoe Challenge was cancelled due to near-record high flows in the Verde River.

After more than seven decades of operation, Boler’s Bar closed its doors on Main Street. The establishment opened soon after the repeal of Prohibition.

April

A group of residents announced the beginning of a project to renovate the old county jail off Hollamon Street in Camp Verde. The jail, constructed through a New Deal work program in the 1930s, has since served as a library and a meeting spot for the local Lions Club.

The town council voted 4-3 against a 1 percent sales tax increase instead deciding to defer the decision to voters.

Light Heart Foundation volunteers honor the spirit of founder Beth Carrigan, who died on Jan. 16, with a balloon release during a closing ceremony for non-profit in early April. Light Heart volunteers served many in the senior citizen population of Camp Verde.The Cottonwood-based Light Heart Foundation, which provided support and gifts for senior citizens throughout the area and in Camp Verde for years, was forced to close its office doors.

A basket made by a local Indian more than a century ago sold for $110,000 at a national auction, highlighting the problems local Yavapai-Apache cultural officials often face when attempting to recover their own artifacts.A basket made by a local Indian more than a century ago sold for $110,000 at a national auction, highlighting the problems local Yavapai-Apache cultural officials often face when attempting to recover their own artifacts.

May

Inspired by the story author and holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel tells in his novel “Night,” Camp Verde High School students in Alissa Novoselik’s 10th-grade English class collected 1 million wildflower seeds to plant in honor of holocaust victims.

Visitors tour the new waste water treatment facility in Camp Verde on May 22.Progress toward the construction of a new fire station on Arena Del Loma took another step forward when the Town Council agreed to waive $20,000 in building permit fees and $10,000 in impact fees for the Camp Verde Fire District in exchange for the district continuing not to bill the town for firefighting activities at town-owned structures.

June

Some members of the Yavapai-Apache Nation, concerned with finances and transparency, initiated a second recall against members of the nation’s tribal council.

The annual Crawdad Festival went off without a hitch thanks to the Verde Valley Rangers, another local group that stepped up to organize a popular event after the town dropped its sponsorship.

Camp Verde Fire District paramedics treated the injured pilot while Yavapai County Sheriff’s Officers awaited Federal Aviation Administration investigators at the crashsite of a small, experimental ultralight plane that went down around 8:10 a.m., June 28.Resident Tom Nelson helped keep 80-year-old Robert Worgull conscious until paramedics arrived after Worgull crashed his experimental ultralight aircraft near the Verde River off Middle Verde Road.

The Nature Conservancy announced it was protecting more riparian habitat with the purchase of the historic Shield Ranch, a 306-acre tract along the Verde River between the Coconino and Prescott national forests.

Rimrock Public High School earned accreditation from the North Central Association Commission on Academic and School Improvement.

July

Deputies with the Camp Verde Marshal’s Office thwarted a kidnapping attempt during a high-risk traffic stop on I-17. Pe Tut, 29, was arrested after attempting to force his ex-girlfriend on a trip from the Phoenix area to Oklahoma.

The Camp Verde Visitor Center on Main Street announced it broke visitation records during the last quarter of the fiscal year.

Sylar Newton, 2, disappeared from the Beaver Creek Campground, launching a massive search that eventually turned into a criminal investigation.Sylar Newton, 2, disappeared from the Beaver Creek Campground, launching a massive search that eventually turned into a criminal investigation.

Camp Verde Fire District Chief Phil Harbeson, who started working for the organization in the early 1970s, announced his retirement.

The Town of Camp Verde announced it was hiring Russ Martin to serve as the new town manager. Martin came from Hayden, Colo.

The Camp Verde Majors All-Stars, the local age 11 to 12 Little League team, brought home a title after beating Williams 12-2 to win the District 10 Little League All-Star tournament championship game.

Ten years after the project was announced, APS announced the completion of efforts to decommission the Childs and Irving hydroelectric power plants along Fossil Creek, plants that were built more than a century ago to, among other things, provide power to early mining operations in the area.

August

A settlement between the town of Camp Verde and the Zellner family over a wood yard finally came in mid-August after a three year legal battleAfter years of legal wrangling, the Town of Camp Verde reached a settlement with a company that owns a wood yard operation and the family that established the business decades ago. Arguments about where the business formerly known as the Zellner Wood Yard could legally operate kept lawyers busy for months.

Russ Martin moves from Hayden, Colo., to Camp Verde to take over as Camp Verde town manager in early August.Rimrock resident Robert Gustafson, 54, was arrested after engaging in a shoot-out with Yavapai County Sheriff’s deputies.

Around 40 percent of Yavapai County voters performed their civic duty by casting ballots in the primary election.

September

The Verde Valley was covered with smoke for a few days as the Weir Fire burned near Stoneman Lake.

The visitor center at Montezuma Castle National Monument turned 50 years old.

Ashley Roth won the title of Colonel’s Daughter in the 50th annual contest.

Rainbow Acres, a local home for developmentally disabled adults, announced plans to begin operating a charter school for students from across the Verde Valley with developmental disabilities.

David Kwail, former chairman of the Yavapai-Apache Nation Tribal Council, was elected to a fourth term in the position after defeating Roberta Pavatea. Kwail started working for tribal government in 1971.

A mosquito in Camp Verde tested positive for carrying the West Nile virus.

Camp Verde’s third annual Relay For Life raised more than $10,000 for the American Cancer Society. The money is used to help find a cure and to provide services for people fighting the disease.

October

The town celebrated the 54th annual Fort Verde Days, one of the town’s longest-running traditions. The Camp Verde Cavalry honored former member C.A. McDonald, who passed away, with a riderless horse in the festival’s parade.

"Kingdom of the Spiders," a film shot in Camp Verde in 1977 and staring William Shatner - best known for playing Capt. James T. Kirk on "Star Trek" - was brought back home to much fanfare with an Oct. 30th showing on the town field sponsored by film fans Steve and Barbara Goetting, center.A resident organized the town’s first “Kingdom of the Spiders” Reunion, a celebration of the 1977 William Shatner horror flick filmed in Camp Verde and the surrounding area.

One of the few events the town still sponsors was a success, as little ghouls and goblins took to downtown for the town’s fourth annual Trick or Treat Main Street event.

November

Two proposed tax measures on the ballot failed. The measures would have increased local sales taxes and were designed to help the town continue to provide services and to raise money for a new library and development of the town’s park land.

The Camp Verde Fire District reorganized its governing structure. Run for years under a president/secretary system, the district now runs under a five-member board.

December

The final slate of candidates seeking seats on the Camp Verde Town Council was set. In addition to Bob Burnside and Steve Goetting seeking the mayor’s seat, incumbents Carol German and Norma Garrison will face residents Bruce George and Alan Buchanan for three open seats on the council.

The Camp Verde Unified School District Board agreed to allow South Verde Technology Magnet School to stay in its Main Street location.

Redeeming Life put forward a plan to turn the former Boler’s Bar building into a teen center. The group is currently looking for community support.

Santa Claus flew through Camp Verde, dropping off a few things here and there for the good little boys and girls.

 

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