Authors Articles byRaquel Hendrickson

Raquel Hendrickson

Raquel Hendrickson
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Raquel, a.k.a. Rocky, is a sixth-generation Arizonan who spent her formative years in the Missouri Ozarks. After attending Temple University in Philadelphia, she earned a bachelor’s degree from Brigham Young University and has been in the newspaper business since 1990. She has been a sports editor, general-assignment reporter, business editor, arts & entertainment editor, education reporter, government reporter and managing editor. After 16 years in the Verde Valley-Sedona, she moved to Maricopa in 2014. She loves the outdoors, the arts, great books and all kinds of animals.

This story has been updated to reflect a change in day/time.

Alcurtis Turner. Photo by Dean Crandall

Six weeks of basketball training for kids in kindergarten through eighth grade is available in Maricopa starting Aug. 26.

Alcurtis Turner of Kids Basketball Association (KBA) is returning to run the camp he started in Maricopa in 2013. He is expecting 20-25 students. He limits it based on the number of volunteer assistants he has available.

“The first year I came down, we had 80 kids,” Turner said. “That was too much.”

The camp is Saturdays from 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at Pacana Park at a rate of $10 per session.

“They’ll basically be ball-handling, running, a lot of cardio, passing and shooting,” Turner said. “We end a lot of times on defense. I give them a little motivational speech to try to build their confidence up.”

Most players who come to his camps are new to the game, and he’ll be drilling fundamentals for them.

“It’s very repetitive,” he said. “Sometimes I’ll switch it up when they get better. You can’t move on to something else until you master what you’ve been learning. Once kids buy into training, it makes it easier for them play in the games.”

Photo by Dean Crandall

Turner was a minor-league basketball player, playing street ball well enough to join semi-pro teams in Arizona. He said a lot of parents of would-be basketball players do not know the amount of work and patience required to become good.

Participating in the KBA camp is not just about basketball. Players are expected to be involved in Turner’s community service Sundays, doing work like picking up litter or painting over graffiti.

“It’s not going to be easy. This is not an overnight process.” Turner said. “It takes time, but they will learn from the best to become the best.”


This story appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

Aaron Gilbert. Photo by William Lange

By Aaron Gilbert

When you are well-hydrated and conditions are awesome in your body, various processes preserve fluid and electrolyte balance. If you become dehydrated due to illness, stress, exercise, climate variations, supplements, foods or beverages, life-threatening imbalances may occur – major bummer.

Symptoms of dehydration include:

  • thirst
  • dry skin
  • fatigue and weakness
  • increased body temperature
  • muscle cramping
  • headaches
  • nausea
  • dry mucous membranes (mouth, nose, eyes)

Severe dehydration can also include:

  • muscle spasms
  • vomiting
  • dark urine
  • vision problems
  • loss of consciousness
  • kidney and liver failure


Exercise and Dehydration

During exercise, we need more water. The enhanced metabolic rate of muscle contraction requires a larger delivery of nutrients and oxygen along with faster waste and heat removal from the body – water makes this happen.

Loss of plasma volume during prolonged exercise by dehydration diminishes performance in part because of the associate reduction in stroke volume and increases in heart rate known as cardiovascular drift. So, to maximize your performance potential while exercising, stay hydrated.


If no fluids are going to be consumed during exercise, pre-hydrate with the following regimen:

  • 16 ounces of fluid on the night before exercise
  • 16 ounces of fluid in the morning
  • 16-30 ounces of fluid, 1 hour before exercise
  • 8-16 ounces 20 minutes before exercise

While dehydration is a concern, over-hydration or water intoxication is also something to watch for when consuming your fluids. Hyponatremia is a sodium electrolyte disorder that is associated with drinking excessive amounts of water that can result in death. EEK! Don’t be alarmed, cases are rare and you’d have to consume gallons and gallons of water in a relatively short amount of time for it to be a concern.


Tips for Avoiding Dehydration:

Be aware of thirst cues.

For men, an average of 16 cups or 128 ounces of water a day from fluid and non-fluid sources (e.g. fruits and vegetables) is adequate.

For women, an average of 11 cups or 88 ounces.

Keep in mind there is extreme variability in water needs based on climate and physical activity levels.

Consume nutrient-dense foods/beverages after exercise to assist in the re-hydrating process.

Those with a history of cramping and “salty sweat” should consider adding salt to foods/beverages after exercising (a quarter to half teaspoon).

For every pound of sweat lost during exercise, rehydrate with 2 cups of fluid.

Aaron Gilbert, CSCS, is founder/owner of Longevity Athletics.


This column appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

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“Overall team speed is better. I think that we’re bigger and stronger than we were last year,” head coach Chris McDonald said of the Maricopa High School football team.

What: Maricopa High School Rams Football Season Opener
When: Aug. 18, 7 p.m.
Where: Ram Stadium, 45012 W. Honeycutt Ave.

The Rams start their season at home Friday at 7 p.m. against Willow Canyon.

The team has a new vibe after Maricopa’s first season in 5A Metro left them with a .500 record. The players talk a lot about chemistry, making it an important part of team-building with a mix of veterans, up-and-comers and new faces.

“Our chemistry for the team is really good this year,” junior center Jake Meyer said. “We’re all pretty much family-oriented.”

“Chemistry is like anything else, it’s got to be developed,” McDonald said. “We do a lot of team-bonding activities. I think the most important part is if the kids understand how it relates to having a better team, which in turn is going to give them a better experience and have a more successful season; if kids buy into that, that’s when it really starts to develop.”

The 2017 edition of the Rams is still not the biggest of 5A division teams, but they are quick. Two speedy running backs who made an impact on last year’s squad are returning. Cam Sanders and Kemo Akins are seniors and team captains.

In his own way, Sanders has become a virtual spokesman for the team, which is currently studying Willow Canyon.

“We’ve been preparing since the beginning of summer,” he said. “That was the only team we had our mind focused on. We take them a week at a time.”

Senior co-captains Cam Sanders and Taylor Belcher. (Not pictured Kemo Akins)

The Rams scrimmaged at Notre Dame Prep on Friday. McDonald called it a “vanilla” outing, but it was a chance to get up to game speed.

“It wasn’t just JV. That’s another varsity team,” Sanders said. “When I got hit the first time, I was like, ‘Yeah, we’re ready to play. I like it. It feels good.’”

While Sanders led the team scoring last season with seven touchdowns, Akins was second in team rushing yards with 283.

Senior Taylor Belcher, 6-foot-4, 230-pound linebacker, was also chosen by the team as one of the three permanent captains. Coaches choose a fourth captain for each game.

“I feel pretty honored that my team put my name in their votes to name me captain this year and walk out to the coin-flip every game,” Belcher said.

Injury caused Maricopa to have rotating quarterbacks in 2016. This season, senior Alec Smith has played his way into the position. Smith moved to Maricopa from Illinois in the middle of his sophomore year, after the football season. Though he had played a little quarterback during spring ball, he wound up as a tight end his junior year.

This year during spring ball, he was asked if he wanted to play quarterback again.

“I said, ‘Yeah,’ and then it just happened,” Smith said. “I’ve been playing quarterback like my whole life, so I pretty much still had it.”

Game 1 quarterback is scheduled to be senior Alec Smith.

McDonald announced Smith as the Game 1 starter.

“It’s his job to lose,” McDonald said. “He’s been with us all off-season and done a great job picking up the offense, and he’s getting better as a leader. [Senior] Devin Parady is a kid that came on late, if you will, in summer and is a kid who’s really started to blossom in pushing Alec, which is only going to make Alec better.”

A newcomer drawing notice, and not just for his size, is senior Zion Saole. After playing on an overwhelming, undefeated freshman team in Anchorage, Alaska, Saole moved with his family to Maricopa last fall.

“I would have played, but then I would have had to sit out for more than half the season,” said Saole, who is a 6-foot-4 lineman weighing around 330 pounds.

“He’s worked his tail off,” coach McDonald said. “He was about 380 pounds when we first got him in January. He’s lost almost 50 pounds. It obviously takes dedication to do that.”

Saole is only 16 years old.

McDonald said he’s passionate about the game and a “high-character kid.”

“The first week of school I had two different teachers already communicate with me what a great role model, what a great leader he’s been in their class,” McDonald said. “So that really speaks volumes about what he’s about. He’s kind of an old soul. He understands the big picture of things.”

One thing McDonald learned in the scrimmage was the amount of “mental-mistakes” cleanup that may need to be done. The players know it, too.

“We need to work on a lot of improvements, particularly myself,” senior Edward Donaldson said. “I’m also looking to go to college, and I need some scouts to come look at me so I can make it out. We need to work together better as a team, so better communication and better teamwork.”

McDonald is also concerned about the health of the team, calling them “banged up.” And while he pined a bit for some “prototypical, old-school throwback, tough football players” from last year’s team, he said this year’s Rams are still pretty tough, and they have an edge.

“I think they have a chip on their shoulder. I think they understand what’s ahead of them,” McDonald said. “They want to accomplish something. They want to get over the hump. We’ve always been a game here and a game there short of making the playoffs.”

Junior wide receiver Jacob Cowing has his long-term goals set there.

“I’m looking forward to making it to the playoffs,” Cowing said. “I think with our team chemistry this year, we can make it happen.”



DATE                     TIME                      OPPONENT

Aug. 18                 7 p.m.                   Willow Canyon

Aug. 25                 7 p.m.                   @ Paradise Valley

Sept. 1                  7 p.m.                   @ Desert View

Sept. 8                  7 p.m.                   Centennial

Sept. 15                7 p.m.                   North Canyon [HOMECOMING]

Sept. 28 (Thu)    7 p.m.                   @ Ironwood*

Oct. 6                    7 p.m.                   Apollo*

Oct. 13                  7 p.m.                   @ Sunnyslope*

Oct. 20                  7 p.m.                   @ Kellis*

Oct. 27                  7 p.m.                   McClintock* [SENIOR NIGHT]

*5A Metro

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Photo by Mason Callejas

The most expensive home sold in Maricopa from June 16 through July 15 was a two-story, five-bedroom house in Rancho El Dorado that went for $380,000. With one owner since it was built in 2002, it was on the market just over a month. It sold for $1,000 over its list price. The 4,000-square-foot home is on a 12,000-square-foot lot that overlooks the golf course and has a private pool.

1. 43304 W. Little Drive

Sold: June 24
Purchase price: $380,000
Square feet: 3,958
Price per square foot: $96.05
Days on market: 42
Builder: Hacienda
Year built: 2002
Bedrooms: 5
Bathrooms: 3
Community: Rancho El Dorado
Features: Three fireplaces, pebble tech pool with waterfall, patio, bedrooms on both floors, RV gate, three-car garage, surround sound, entertainment bar, granite countertops, water softener
Seller’s agent: Tamra K. Yelavich, Re/Max
Buyer’s agent: Brian French, The Maricopa Real Estate Company

2. 18359 N. Falcon Lane, Glennwilde, $335,000
3. 21841 N. Celtic Ave., Cobblestone Farms, $310,000
4. 44557 W. Garden Lane, Cobblestone Farms, $299,900
5. 20226 N. Madison Drive, The Villages at Rancho El Dorado, $299,000

This item appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

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Photo by Mason Callejas

The least expensive home sold in Maricopa from June 16 through July 15 was a short sale in Senita that sold for $110,000 in two days. Considered to be in fairly good condition but needing a little work, it has four bedrooms in its 2,275 square feet. The 5,000-square-foot lot has desert landscaping in front and dirt in back.

1.       43299 W. Elizabeth Ave. 

Sold: June 29

Purchase price: $110,000

Square feet: 2,275

Price per square foot: $48.35

Days on market: 2

Builder: Pulte

Year built: 2006

Bedrooms: 4

Bathrooms: 2.5

Community: Senita

Features: Patio area, laminate flooring, eat-in kitchen, two-car garage, basic amenities

Seller’s agent: Mario Beltran Espinoza, neXGen Real Estate

Buyer’s agent: Mario Beltran Espinoza, neXGen Real Estate


2. 40740 W. Sanders Way, Homestead, $125,000

3. 41158 W. Granada Drive, Glennwilde, $126,000

4. 41322 W. Lucera Lane, Glennwilde, $130,000

5. 36029 W. Velazquez Drive, Tortosa, $130,000

This item appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

A new club softball organization is hosting two first-time “friendly” tournaments in August dubbed “Maricopa Mayhem.”

Maricopa Sandlot fields fast-pitch 12-under and 14-under girls’ teams. The club launched in 2016 to give the girls more competitive opportunities, coach Michael O’Dell said.

The 12U tournament is Aug. 12-13 and the 14U tournament is Aug. 18-20 at Copper Sky Regional Park, 44345 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd. Sixteen teams are being accepted for each.

In both tournaments of Maricopa Mayhem, games start at 8 a.m. both days and are timed for 60 minutes. Saturday’s games will run into the evening, and Sunday’s games will end with the championship game in the mid-afternoon.

The team entry fee is $350. There will be a team trophy and prizes for first and second place.

The tournaments are for fun and sportsmanship and are not United States Specialty Sports Association qualifiers. O’Dell said he and the other parents have worked hard to recruit teams to participate.

“We’ve done quite a bit of legwork, and we’ve posted it on [a softball forum],” he said.

Maricopa Sandlot started with one team of 12 players in spring of ’16 as the girls and their parents were looking for stronger competition than they could find locally. The parents coached and formed a club with uniforms and logos.

After playing in the Tempe Lady Hawks Softball League, eight of the players went on to a higher level of competition, leaving the Sandlot with just four girls.

O’Dell thought that was the end of the experiment, but more parents approached him that fall and asked if the team was going to continue. They soon had enough girls for 12U and 14U teams. O’Dell said they plan to add 10U.

Maricopa Sandlot plays spring and fall seasons.

This story appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

Photo by Mason Callejas

As Phase 1 construction of a multi-million-dollar expansion nears completion this fall, Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino is planning a job fair in August to fill new positions.

What: Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino Job Fair
When: Aug. 10, 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
Where: Central Arizona College – Maricopa, 17945 N. Regent Drive


Talent Specialist Jamie Westmiller said the facility will be hiring 50-75 people, about half of them full-time.

“They will be mostly hospitality positions with a few security positions mixed in,” he said.

Available positions include cooks, food servers, host/cashiers, housekeeping, facilities maintenance, restaurant supervisor and beverage supervisor. All positions have a 401K, Westmiller said. Full-time positions get heath care, dental and vision.

Westmiller said Ak-Chin Indian Community members will get preference. Because the job fair will have on-site interviews and on-site hiring, potential applicants are asked to fill out an application online at before arriving at the job fair.

And be prepared to turn on the charm.

“We always hire for personality and train for skills,” General Manager Robert Livingston said. “We’re looking for upbeat, positive energy.”

Phase 1 includes the new restaurant and wine bar Oak & Fork. Livingston said those hired to work there will need to be passionate about wine and educating customers about wine, though the restaurant will “not be a snooty place.”

The current construction involves “basically everything to the north,” Livingston said. That includes a parking garage, 18,000-square-foot ballroom, expansion of the casino floor, expansion of the buffet into the space now occupied by The Range Steakhouse, dedicated Diamond Lounge, upstairs BINGO hall and other changes for office space.

Separately but simultaneously, Ak-Chin Indian Community is constructing an elevated walkway linking the casino property to UltraStar Multi-tainment Center. Ak-Chin is working with Arizona Department of Transportation to move the traffic light north to Ak-Chin Parkway, to make that the main entry to the casino and hotel.

Next year, Phase II will include the hotel tower that adds another 230 rooms to the 300 existing, a new restaurant called Chop Block & Brew and a spa and fitness center. Late in 2018 will be the beginning of the renovation of the pool and resort rooms around it.

While the construction has been inconvenient or confusing for some long-time customers, Livingston said they’ve enjoyed the portholes cut into the temporary walkway walls that provide a view of the construction.

“It’s going to be a great addition to Maricopa and the whole of Pinal County,” he said. “We’re running short on rooms right now, and this will allow us to expand on what we do.”

 Westmiller said a second job fair is planned later in the year.

Photo by Mason Callejas

This story appears in the August issue of InMaricopa.

Vintage Partners Leasing Director Casey Treadwell speaks at the ceremonial groundbreaking for Edison Point July 31. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

A project 10 years in the making hit another milestone Monday morning with a ceremonial groundbreaking.

Edison Pointe, a commercial development south of Fry’s Marketplace, is scheduled to include Ross, Planet Fitness, Brakes Plus, Burger King and Dunkin Donuts. The mayor, councilmembers, Vintage Partners Leasing Director Casey Treadwell and Economic Development Director Denyse Airheart participated in turning earth at the site where areas have already been prepped for foundations.

“We’ll be done with all of the main construction in February,” Treadwell said. “There will be some stuff that could actually open earlier.”

That includes Burger King, which is planned for the northwest corner of the property near Fry’s gas station.

“They’re way ahead of everybody else,” he said. “They’ve been chomping at the bit, but they’ve been very patient. They’ve spent a lot of money in order to go forward.”

Ross and other anchor establishments are expected to open in February and March. With a shared boundary, Vintage Partners has been coordinating with Fry’s during development.

“All of these properties are tied together in their agreements, so we had to maintain certain things for Fry’s,” Treadwell said. “In exchange for the help they’ve given us, we’re going to give them a little land so they can add another gas [island] at the end. It’s just a tiny piece.

“We had to get the property subdivided, which will happen next month.”

The property was planned for development in 2007 but became a victim of the recession. Vintage took over the project four years ago.

“We’ve all been waiting for this project for a very long time,” Mayor Christian Price said. “One of the things I think it’s important that everybody understands is how much work goes into a project like this… Just because you see this land sitting here, it doesn’t make it so easy to suddenly pop something out of the ground.”

Price said Vintage understands the community and what it wants.

“I’m excited to welcome these new retail amenities to the community because this is what keeps the residents here local and supporting these businesses,” Airheart said.

Councilmember Henry Wade praised Vintage for being “smooth and comfortable but impactful and effective.”

“I’m happy as a former Planning & Zoning commissioner to know that things actually do get done,” Wade said.

“When people ask us what cities we like to work with, Maricopa’s at the top of the list,” Treadwell said.


National Junior Honor Society hosts 3 ice cream socials at Maricopa Wells this week.

This week has many activities related to going back to school, but there are also a long-awaited groundbreaking and a new art display to enjoy. Below, members of the National Junior Honor Society talk about back-to-school ice cream socials at Maricopa Wells Middle School. For information on these and other calendar listings, or to add your own, visit


Edison Pointe Groundbreaking is at 7:30 a.m. at the site of the new shopping center, 20595 N. John Wayne Parkway.

Budget, Finance and Operations Council Subcommittee meets at 10 a.m. at Maricopa City Hall, 39700 W. Civic Center Plaza.

Color Me Calm is at 12:30 p.m. at Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road.

SPA Meet the Teacher Night is 5-7 p.m. at Sequoia Pathway Academy, 19287 N Porter Road.

A Ray of Hope meeting of Narcotics Anonymous is at 7 p.m. at Maricopa Community Church, 44977 W. Hathaway Ave.


Coffee with Friends of the Maricopa Library is at 1:30 p.m. at Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road.

Tutu Tea Party for all princesses age 2-5 is at 3 p.m. at Desert Sun Performing Arts, 19756 N. John Wayne Parkway, Suite 107. RSVP.

Celebrate Recovery Coffee & Karaoke is at 5 p.m. at Maricopa Community Church, 44977 W. Hathaway Ave.

City Hall Art Gallery Reception is at 5:30 p.m. at Maricopa City Hall, 39700 W. Civic Center Plaza.

City Council Work Session is at 6 p.m. at Maricopa City Hall, 39700 W. Civic Center Plaza.

MWMS 8th Grade Ice Cream Social is at 6:30 p.m. at Maricopa Wells Middle School, 45725 W. Honeycutt Ave.

Celebrate Recovery Large & Small Group Meeting is at 7 p.m. at Maricopa Community Church, 44977 W. Hathaway Ave.

City Council Regular Session is at 7 p.m. at Maricopa City Hall, 39700 W. Civic Center Plaza.


Sequoia Pathway First Day of School is 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at 19287 N Porter Road.

Lapsit for ages 0-12 months is at 9 a.m. at Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road.

Harrah’s Club 777 Toastmasters meet at 3 p.m. at Harrah’s Ak-Chin Casino, 15406 Maricopa Road.

Maricopa Police Explorer Post Meeting is at 5 p.m. at Maricopa High School, 45012 W. Honeycutt Ave.

MWMS 7th Graders Ice Cream Social is at 6:30 p.m. at Maricopa Wells Middle School, 45725 W. Honeycutt Ave.


Leading Edge First Day of School is 8 a.m.-3 p.m. at 18700 N. Porter Road.

Freshman First Day is 8 a.m.-noon at Maricopa High School, 45012 W. Honeycutt Ave.

Movers & Shakers for ages 1-2 years is at 9 a.m. at Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road.­Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road.

Meet the Teacher Night is at 5 p.m. at Pima Butte Elementary School, 42202 W. Rancho El Dorado.

Meet the Teacher Night is at 5:30 p.m. at Butterfield Elementary School, 43800 W. Honeycutt Road.

Meet the Teacher Night is at 5:30 p.m. at Maricopa Elementary School, 18150 N. Alterra Parkway.

Meet the Teacher Night is at 5:30 p.m. at Saddleback Elementary School, 18600 N. Porter Road.

Meet the Teacher Night is at 5:30 p.m. at Santa Rosa Elementary School, 21400 N Santa Rosa Drive.

MWMS 6th Grade Ice Cream Social is at 6:30 p.m. at Maricopa Wells Middle School, 45725 W. Honeycutt Ave.

A Ray of Hope meeting of Narcotics Anonymous is at 7 p.m. at Ak-Chin Social Services, 48227 W. Farrell Road.


Childcare & Babysitting Program for ages 10-16 is at 5:30 p.m. at Copper Sky Multigenerational Center, 44345 W. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.

Strength & Hope Al-Anon Meeting is at 7 p.m. at Community of Hope Church, 45295 W. Honeycutt Ave.


Copa City Dems Meeting & Social is at 4 p.m. at Copper Sky Police Substation, 17985 W. Greythorne Drive.


A Ray of Hope meeting of Narcotics Anonymous is at 7 p.m. at Maricopa Community Church, 44977 W. Hathaway Ave.  

Elliott D. Pollack & Company analysis

Pinal County has high hopes for several projects promising many jobs. At least one could have a significant impact on Maricopa’s workforce.

Elliott D. Pollack & Company, known for its economic prognostications, produced an economic analysis of the plans for Attesa, a planned motorsports complex on 2,500 acres near Casa Grande that intends to include a hotel, conference center, driving club and other retail space along with racetracks. Its price tag is $1.1 billion.

The Pollack company completed the study last year. This month, it added a memo from senior economist Danny Court to Dan Erickson, member/manager of Danrick Builders, which intends to develop Attesa. The memo breaks down the employment the project could create in Pinal County communities.

The intended property is south of Interstate 8 between Montgomery and Bianco roads. The county has a public hearing related to the project scheduled for Wednesday.

Court said the Attesa project “is expected to create over 13,300 onsite jobs, which will provide Pinal County residents a significant opportunity for local employment.” Many of those are construction jobs, but more than 6,000 are expected to be permanent jobs.

For Casa Grande, that would be 4,900 part-time and full-time employees earning $88.7 million in wages. For Maricopa, the forecast number of employees is 1,537 earning $27.8 million.

The Pollack company predicted 61 percent of employees on the project would be from Pinal County.

“It will start with construction and then go from there,” county Economic Development Director Tim Kanavel said. “Jobs are going to be created, ongoing, and most of those people will live in Casa Grande, Maricopa, Eloy and Coolidge. The influx of new visitors and residents will create more jobs at restaurants, retailers and other consumer companies.”

Attesa has calculated a groundbreaking in the first quarter of 2018. Developers have experienced a slow process in getting appropriate zoning, however. The county Planning & Zoning Commission recommended approval of a text amendment that adds a citizen-initiated, multi-purpose community master plan (MP-CMP) Zoning District. At its June 21 meeting, the Board of Supervisors decided to delay a hearing on the issue until Aug. 2 because it was improperly agendized.

“Without this text amendment, we really can’t move forward in our zoning,” said Nick Wood, attorney from Snell and Wilmer, representing the developers.

“We’re essentially going to build a mini-city,” Erickson said in a press release from Attesa. “We’re going to welcome tech companies who need to research, develop and test, and people who have a passion for performance cars and driving them at speed, and guests who want to be entertained with uncompromised customer service. To provide the best experience possible, in all those areas, we’re going to need people. And most of them will be local, with the county.”

But Attesa has also been a shadow on the periphery of another planned motorsports complex in Maricopa. Apex Motor Club is planning a much smaller, private course only for club members on the northwest side of Maricopa. After the city council approved a conditional use permit, a petition drive was formed by Maricopa Citizens Protecting Tax Payers Political Action Committee to force it to a public vote. City Hall turned back the petitions, and that resulted in a lawsuit by the PAC.

Those heading the PAC are not residents of Maricopa, and former Arizona Attorney General Grant Woods spoke on behalf of the “anonymous” opposition. The lawsuits have delayed work on the Maricopa project. Apex President Jason Plotke pointed the finger squarely at Attesa officials.

“Apparently, they believe their own project so insufficient that they cannot compete with ours,” he said at the time.

No documentation has been produced directly linking Attesa representatives with the Apex opposition.

Other projects that have been announced for the Casa Grande area are PhoenixMart (under construction), Lucid Motors (in development) and the proposed amusement park DreamPort Villages (in development).

Photo by Victor Moreno

The American Legion baseball team representing Post 133 of Maricopa took on community leaders in a friendly game of softball July 13 at Copper Sky. The teens played elected officials and employees of Maricopa City Hall and Ak-Chin Indian Community.


Maricopa features over a dozen subdivisions with an array of amenities including community pools, golf courses and parks. Many HOA agencies are located in The Valley and a few have local offices. Every Homeowners Association has a community manager assigned to each subdivision in the city. Contact information for each of them can be found below.

Acacia Crossing HOA

Linda Huggins, Community Manager

(602) 437-4777 ext. 2151

4645 E. Cotton Gin Loop

Phoenix, AZ 85040


Alterra HOA

Travis Jack, Community Manager

(623) 251-5260 ext. 101

21639 N. 12th Ave. Suite 102

Phoenix, AZ 85027


Cobblestone Farms HOA

Jamie Crowell, Community Manager

(602) 216-7510

1600 W. Broadway Rd. Suite 200

Tempe, AZ 85282


Desert Cedars HOA

Mark Miller, Community Manager

(602) 437-4777 ext. 2153

4645 E. Cotton Gin Loop

Phoenix, AZ 85040


Desert Passage/Smith Farms HOA

Andi Chaira, Community Manager

(480) 422-0888 ext. 1022

4025 S. McClintock Dr. #205

Tempe, AZ 85282



Glennwilde Groves HOA

Michael Munroe, Community Manager

(602) 674-4375

1600 W. Broadway Rd. Ste 200

Tempe, AZ 85282


Homestead North HOA

Jennie Nathey, Community Manager

(602) 216-7507

1600 W. Broadway Rd. Suite 200

Tempe, AZ 85282


The Lakes at Rancho El Dorado HOA

Tiffani Horton, Community Manager

(602) 395-2731

1600 W. Broadway Rd. Suite 200

Tempe, AZ 85282


Maricopa Meadows HOA

Jen Amundson, Community Manager

(480) 759-4945

16625 S. Desert Foothills Pkwy.

Phoenix, AZ 85048


Palo Brea

Rhett Homan, Community Manager

(602) 437-4777 ext. 2173

4645 E. Cotton Gin Loop

Phoenix, AZ 85040


Province Community Association

Debbie Harper, Community Manager

(520) 568-8315

20942 N. Province Pkwy.


Rancho El Dorado HOA

Joy Pagel, Community Manager

(480) 551-4300


Rancho Mirage HOA

Tiffani Horton, Community Manager

(602) 395-2731

1600 W. Broadway Rd. Suite 200

Tempe, AZ 85282


Santa Rosa Springs

Rhett Homan, Community Manager

(602) 437-4777 ext. 2173

4645 E. Cotton Gin Loop

Phoenix, AZ 85040


Senita HOA

Kriss Lindberg, Community Contact

(480) 396-4567 ext. 239


Sorrento Community Master Association

Tiffani Horton, Community Manager

(602) 395-4731

1600 W. Broadway Rd. Suite 200

Tempe, AZ 85282


Tortosa HOA

Chris Hashisaki, Community Manager

(520) 423-9706

36340 W. Picasso Street


The Villages at Rancho El Dorado HOA

Kim Gonzalez, Community Manager

(520) 568-8255

20991 N. Butterfield Pkwy.

Maricopa, AZ 85138

Constable Bret Roberts (left) and Mayor Christian Price serve customers at Water and Ice. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

The Streets Don’t Love You Back intervention program based in Maricopa raised funds to print more program booklets with a party at Water and Ice on Saturday. Mayor Christian Price, Councilmember Henry Wade, state Sen. Steve Smith, Police Chief Steve Stahl and Constable Bret Roberts were behind the counter with owner Tonya Thompson and her staff serving up ice cream on a hot day that was also TSDLYB co-founder Lucinda Boyd’s birthday. Co-founder Rob Boyd, releasing new music, also prepped a video.

It was the first fund-raiser for the organization, which teaches its program in Maricopa and Phoenix and is also in state prisons to battle recidivism rates. As the program grows, more booklets are needed for the courses. So far, TSDLYB has relied on donations.

Photo courtesy Maricopa Historical Society

The historic California Zephyr railcar (right) makes its 2001 debut in Maricopa and is greeted by a modern Amtrak train (left). The railcar, which was first in use in 1949, ran the Chicago-to-Los Angeles route until its retirement in 1970. Pinal County purchased the car and brought it to Maricopa in 2001 as a symbol of the town’s historic past. Maricopa Historical Society was allowed use of the Zephyr for occasional tours and history displays. This year, the historical society bought the Zephyr from the county for $1.

This article appears in the July issue of InMaricopa.

The former Green Zone Nutrition received a business license as Desert Rose Nutrition.

The following businesses applied for business licenses in the city of Maricopa May 16-June 15.

Commercial: American Fire Equipment Sales & Service, Desert Rose Nutrition, Drotz Venture LLC, Jordan Law LLP

Home-based: Designs by Diane, Hand-Crafted by Lani Girl, Mobile Auto Body Specialist, Gilbert Barela’s Landscaping, PinalCo Re-Bath, Robert Frederick CPA, Scoopy Doo, Unwind Massage Therapy by Annalisa

Out of town: Ausi’s Building & Construction LLC, Bayou Bistro, Cobb Event Designs, Interstate Restoration LLC, Pat Thompson Food Vendor, Santa Rita Landscaping, Starlight Home, Temperature Pro of Metro Phoenix, Tri-State General Contractors

Special Use: Redemption Tattoo

This article appears in the July issue of InMaricopa.

Though only eight eateries in Maricopa were inspected between May 16 and June 15, two were inspected twice in that period. Only one restaurant did not receive an excellent rating.

At Dairy Queen/Shell, the inspector listed ongoing problems. One was a prep table that was not cold-holding food at 41 degrees or cooler as required. The other was holes in a wall next to the ice machine and gaps at the back door, which had been written up in February. The business was also ticked for not having a food thermometer in the prep table.


Excellent [No violations found]

Aliberto’s Maricopa (2)


Bashas’ – Deli

Culver’s of Maricopa

Fry’s Marketplace – Sushi (2)

Helen’s at Copper Sky

Honeycutt Coffee


Satisfactory [Violations corrected during inspection or given deadline]

Maricopa Shell – Dairy Queen


Needs Improvement [Critical items noted during inspection cannot be corrected immediately]



Unacceptable [Gross, unsanitary conditions necessitating the discontinuation of operation]



Global Water is among businesses with planned construction.

In the past month, an array of businesses landed permits for upcoming or ongoing work.

Global Water received a permit for a 1,200-foot wall for the perimeter of its campus in The Lakes at Rancho El Dorado. The company also received a grading-and-drainage permit as part of an expansion project valued at $1 million.

Volkswagen Group of Americanwas granted a permit for a 6,000-square-foot, factory-built metal building. It is being installed by Willmeng Construction and valued at $400,000.

Maricopa Unified School District is installing restroom additions for its CTE classroom at the high school, a project costing $75,000.

American Promotional Events received permits to sell fireworks and pyrotechnics in Fry’s and Wal-Mart.

The new Gyro Grill, located in the space formerly occupied by Radio Shack at 20917 N. John Wayne Parkway, was granted a permit for an illuminated sign.

This article appears in the July issue of InMaricopa.

Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Maricopa’s 12th annual Great American 4th brought four hours of fun to the fields of Copper Sky on Tuesday, celebrating Independence Day with games, a pool party, water zone, food and live music from Outside the Lines. Vice Mayor Marvin Brown delivered a city address before Maricopa Police Department presented the colors, and an entertaining fireworks show capped off the evening.


Maricopa Public Library is again hosting a Red Cross bloodmobile, allowing patrons to exchange a blood donation for a fine.

What: Blood for Fines
When: July 7, 10 a.m.-3:30 p.m.
Where: Maricopa Public Library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road
How Much: Free

Library Manager Erik Surber said fines up to $25 will be waived for those who give blood during the drive, which is set for July 7 from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the library, 41600 W. Smith-Enke Road.

To give blood, donors must bring a driver’s license or two other forms of identification.

The fine waiver does not apply to replacement charges, so if you lost a book, you’ll still need to pay for it. Library patrons who do not owe fines cannot use the blood donation as an opportunity to accumulate credit.

According to the American Red Cross, although an estimated 38 percent of the U.S. population is eligible to donate blood at any given time, less than 10 percent of that eligible population do so each year. That is around 6.8 million donors annually.

The Red Cross supplies about 40 percent of the nation’s blood supply. Around 36,000 units are needed every day.

To register for the blood drive at Maricopa Public Library online at or call the Red Cross at 1-800-733-2767. For a complete list of requirements and helpful tips for potential donors, visit

This article appears in the July issue of InMaricopa.

CAD instructor Patrick Ramirez (left) shows the scanning program to Maricopa Historical Society's Paul Shirk and Dorothy Charles. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

The California Zephyr railcar received a serious scanning Friday.

Maricopan Patrick Ramirez, a journeyman plumber and a computer-aided design (CAD) and laser-scanning instructor with UA Local 469, brought fellow instructors and high-tech equipment to the historic car next to the Amtrak station to give it a three-dimensional scan.

Using Faro software and equipment – a portable laser scanner and a laser scanner on a tripod – Ramirez, Dustin Baker and Michael Trask took several minutes to record the Zephyr 360 degrees, inside and out, from the dome to the wheels. That work will create a 3D model like those they create of buildings for plumbing and other utilities.

So, why the Zephyr?

“I’ve always been interested in it,” said Ramirez, who has lived in The Lakes at Rancho El Dorado for three years. “I love trains. Every time I drive by this thing, I’d love to go inside.”

Ramirez brought his idea to Paul Shirk, president of the Maricopa Historical Society, which recently acquired the railcar from Pinal County. The Society is mulling relocating the car once the land lease runs out, and the 3D modeling could be helpful in a move and setup.

Shirk said Ramirez is a “founding member” of what is becoming the Zephyr Guild, imagined as a collection of local skilled workers willing to donate their talents and knowledge to improve the railcar and fit it for historical displays.

Ramirez wants to use it as a teaching tool for the apprenticeship program at the Pipe Trades Training Center. He said the scanning process “allows the student to get hands-on, real-life data.”

“If it takes something that we just looked at, and we walk around and we talk about it and propose different ways of gathering information about this and what’s around it, that’s a talking point. I don’t like talking points,” he said. “I like showing points. I like things that convey information.

“So, when I talk about this, I’m over here on the computer and bringing up the file and I’m telling the students you can walk around and get information. And sometimes it’s six months later that you need this little bit of information, and you can drive four hours or you can pull up the file on your computer.”

In pipe trades, Ramirez said, the accuracy level of laser scans must be between an eighth-inch and a half-inch.

Shirk said the equipment is enhancing the typical blue-color trades of plumbing and steamfitting to make them high-tech careers. He said the laser-scanning instructors would like to bring students to Maricopa to see the Zephyr and compare the 3D renderings.


The plans for Apex Motor Club have gone through the Development Services Department, Planning & Zoning Commission and City Council.

A group calling itself Maricopa Citizens Protecting Taxpayers has filed a complaint against the City of Maricopa over its dismissal of a petition against Private Motorsports Group.

That club of car enthusiasts is seeking to construct Apex Motor Club on the west side of the city. In April, the city council approved a conditional use permit allowing the construction. MCPT, which lists non-residents Robert Rebich and David Prom as its officers, circulated petitions to force that decision to a referendum.

Though the petitions had enough signatures to make it a ballot issue, the city claimed the permit was not a legislative act but an administrative act and was not subject to referendum, according to the Arizona Constitution.

The suit filed Monday in Pinal County Superior Court lists the City of Maricopa, the mayor and all members of the city council, Private Motorsports Group and City Clerk Vanessa Bueras as the 10 defendants.

City spokesperson Jennifer Brown said the city had not yet been served but will follow the standard procedures for responding to a lawsuit. That includes evaluating whether the city’s attorney, Denis Fitzgibbons, should handle the case or outside counsel should be involved or the city should coordinate with the co-defendant in the case.

Apex has been represented in its land-use dealings by Rose Law Group. In this case, Apex is represented by Coppersmith Brockelman Lawyers. MCPT is represented by Timothy A. La Sota, PLC.

In deciding how to respond to the suit, the council will meet in executive session, which might be a special meeting outside the regular meeting schedule. Because of the Fourth of July next Tuesday, the next scheduled meeting of the council is not until July 18.

After being served, “we generally have to file an answer within 20 days,” Brown said. Once an answer is filed, “the court basically dictates the next steps for us,” she said.

Rebich has not returned calls for comment on the Apex issue. He and Prom are listed as plaintiffs on the suit, along with MCPT. 

Zack Park (center) was voted Best Dad in Maricopa in a Facebook contest sponsored by InMaricopa and Maricopa Ace Hardware, winning a grill package. With him are his family, wife Kim and kids Taylor and Cooper, InMaricopa's Vincent Manfredi and Ace's Troy Ricci. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Zack Park came a bit late to fatherhood. In fact, he wasn’t much interested in it for the first 28 years of his life.

Now he has been voted the Best Dad in Maricopa, thanks to a serious online campaign by his 10-year-old son Cooper that was picked up by friends, family and colleagues across the globe. The contest ran on InMaricopa’s Facebook page and drew 25 nominations.

In the final days, Park was in a neck-and-neck, friendly battle with Matt Lincoln, ultimately garnering 344 “likes” to win a Traeger grill with a cover and wood pellets from Maricopa Ace Hardware.

“It’s awesome,” Park said. “I tried to keep [the nomination] on the down-low. ‘What are you people talking about?’”

Instead, his nomination was even Down Under, with likes coming from as far away as Australia. The Parks, it turns out, have a wide fanbase.

Zack and Kim Park have been married 11 years and are the parents of Cooper and 8-year-old Taylor.

“When I first met her, I never wanted kids,” Park said. “But after having these kids, I wouldn’t change it for anything.”

In nominating his dad, Cooper said, “He works all day in the hot sun and comes home and spends time with us. He makes sure we get to our sport events, tutoring, cheer and dance clubs on time and never misses a game. He is the best dad ever!”

“He works super-hard,” his daughter Taylor said.

“They keep us busy and keep us on our feet,” Park said. “I wouldn’t change it for anything,” he said again.

What they’re saying:

Stephen Joy He is a cool guy! Always there for his kids!

Casey Warner Zack is a pretty cool guy!

Stephanie Belanger Brown He’s an amazing dad!

Risa Shuman Zack’s got my vote for father of the year

Happy Father’s Day.

Matt Lincoln (far left) picks up his second-place prize from the Best Dad in Maricopa contest at Maricopa Ace Hardward. With him are (from left) daughter Talia, son Devin, son Nicholas, William Gonzalez and Troy Ricci of Ace, wife Yvette, son Matthew and son Jordan. Not pictured: Jeshuah Lincoln.

Among 25 outstanding nominees for Best Dad in Maricopa presented by Maricopa Ace Hardware, two ran away from the pack in online voting. Finishing in second place by just 16 “likes” on Facebook was Matt Lincoln.

The father of six, including two adopted children, holds down two full-time jobs, one in retail and one as the youth pastor over more than 100 kids at Church of Celebration. Lincoln said he was humbled by the support for his nomination, whch totaled 328 likes.

“It’s a blessing to even be considered for it,” he said. “That that many people actually voted and took the time to actually have an opinion about it is pretty amazing.”

Lincoln first became a father at the age of 19 when Matthew came into the world.

“It was life-changing,” Lincoln said. “I had to grow up really, really fast. I had to learn wisdom very, very quickly for survival. It’s probably the best thing that happened to me.”

He was nominated by wife Yvette and children Matthew, Jeshuah, Nicholas, Jordan, Devin and Talia.

“He leads, lives and loves wholeheartedly with the mindset of building up the next generation to succeed,” Yvette Lincoln said in her nomination. “He’s selfless, humble and he never gives up on anyone. He pushes through every battle.”

Matt Lincoln said his philosophy of fatherhood is “God first.”

“In order to be a great father, you have to learn from the creator of fatherhood, and that’s God,” he said. “So, I follow those principles, and that’s worked pretty well.”

Lincoln’s prize was an exterior paint project from Dun Edwards that included six 5-gallon buckets of paint, a 4-foot aluminum ladder, brushes, drop cloth, roller tray set and roller covers. The Lincoln family picked up their prize at Maricopa Ace Hardware on Friday. Yvette Lincoln said they recently received an HOA reminder that it was time to repaint the house.

Meet the winner

Engine 575 crew (from left) Anthony Stimac, Josh Eads, Capt. Chris Bolinger and Jimmy Herta with Zoe and Zolee Hicks. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Figuring they were old enough to comprehend the meaning, Maricopa mom Sherese Hicks brought her twin daughters to Maricopa Fire Station 575 on Saturday to have them meet the first responders who helped bring them into the world.

Zoe and Zolee, now 4, were born under extreme circumstances Feb. 27, 2013. Even before going into labor, Hicks knew the girls were not situated properly, and family members were telling her to prepare for a caesarian section delivery.

The girls did not wait around for that.

As Sherese was being driven by her uncle and aunt, it was clear she needed immediate help. The crew of Engine 575 met them at the Circle K at the corner of John Wayne Parkway and Smith-Enke Road, where firefighter/paramedic Josh Eads helped Hicks deliver the first twin. To his surprise, the girl came out feet-first.

After eight years on the job, it was Eads’ first baby delivery. His response was, “What is that?”

The baby was not only breech but also had the umbilical cord around her neck. Eads’ training had covered more typical birth scenarios, but he and the crew were able to sort out the situation safely and get Hicks ready for transport to the hospital.

The second baby was born – again feet first – en route to the Chandler Regional Medical Center.

“Typically, with a breech kid, we’re not going to deliver them in the field,” Eads said. “The idea is to give them that supportive care – IVs, fluids, medications if they need it – and then get them to the professional to do it.”

Eads said he was calm walking into the situation, both because of the consistent training the crew gets for emergencies and because of the naivete of never having the experience of delivering a baby. Hicks, who has three older children, was calm for a different reason.

“I wasn’t worried because I knew that it’s all part of God’s plan. I knew that it would be fine,” she said, including the firefighters in her faith. “They had to have been a part of God’s plan. For them not to ever have delivered a breech baby and [Eads] not to ever deliver a baby, it was like, ‘Oh, my goodness.’ It had to be.”

At the reunion Saturday, Zoe and Zolee hugged the members of the Engine 575 crew and received child-friendly goodies in return. The team on Engine 575 that night was Eads, Capt. Chris Bolinger, engineer Jimmy Huerta and firefighter Anthony Stimac.

“Any time there’s more than one baby, it’s a high-risk delivery. In this case the babies were born breech,” MFMD spokesman Brad Pitassi said. “We train for worst-case scenarios, and this was a worst-case scenario … with the best outcome we could possibly imagine.

“Paramedics that responded that day as well as paramedics on the ambulance, the EMTs that assisted – this was a team effort, and everybody performed just like they’re trained to do in responding to such emergencies.”

Bolinger said the crew looks forward to continuing the relationship with the family and watching the girls grow up.

Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 12043 hosted a Flag Day ceremony Wednesday morning, with help from Boy Scout Troop 993 at Maricopa Veterans Center. It was the 240th anniversary of the adoption of the U.S. flag, which has remained essentially the same (with notable additions as the country grew) since 1777, when the Second Continental Congress passed the flag resolution, “That the flag of the thirteen United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field, representing a new constellation.”

Clear skies and high temperatures will be the norm for this week in Maricopa. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Monday’s relatively mild weather will lead into an increasingly hot week and an excessive heat watch this weekend, according to the National Weather Service.

Monday’s high is expected to reach only 93 while the day is sunny with breezes out of the west of 5-10 mph. The nighttime lows will be around 62.

Tuesday is forecast to warm up to 97 degrees and remain sunny with practically no wind. Overnight, the low will be around 65.

Wednesday’s forecast calls for a dramatic rise in temperature to a high of 105 and winds increasing to 10 mph in the afternoon. The low overnight will be around 69 and skies are expected to remain clear.

Thursday will be sunny and hot, with a high climbing to 110. The low will be around 73 degrees.

Friday is expected to be even hotter, with a predicted high of 112. The nighttime low will be around 75 degrees.

The weekend is forecast to be increasingly hot, with an NWS Excessive Heat Watch in place June 17-19. That indicates a significant increase in the potential for heat-related illness for those working or exercising outdoors or with adequate air conditioning.

NWS reminds residents to never leave children or pets unattended in vehicles, drink more water than usual and avoid alcohol, sugar and caffeine. Wear light-colored clothing and a wide-brimmed hat when outside.

Recognize the signs and symptoms of heat illness. Early symptoms include headache, thirst and muscle cramps. Serious symptoms include weakness, skin that is cool to the touch, fast but weak pulse, nausea, and fainting. Severe symptoms include hot and red dry skin, fast and strong pulse, sweating that has stopped, and unconsciousness. Untreated heat illness can lead to fatal heat stroke.

The corn is high and so are the temperatures and the haze this weekend in Maricopa. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

After toying with the “excessive heat” designation this week, the edge will come off the triple-digit temperatures only a little for the weekend, according to the National Weather Service. Afternoon breezy conditions and localized blowing dust are expected over the weekend and into early next week.

According to the Pinal County Air Quality Index, active children, adults and people with lung disease such as asthma should consider reducing outdoor activities.

Friday’s high temperature is forecast to be 107 with light breezes under sunny skies. Overnight, the low will reach 72 as winds pick up to 15 mph and gust as high as 20 mph.

Saturday, the high is expected to reach only 104 as the winds and clear skies continue. The nighttime low will be around 70.

Sunday’s sunny forecast calls for a high of 101, with winds increasing to 15-20 mph and gusting at 25 mph. Overnight, the low temperature is expected to be just 68 degrees.

That will lead to a Monday high of 94. Enjoy that while you can, as triple-digits return next week.

Craig Dourmashkin with his portrait of Bob Marley. Photo by Raquel Hendrickson

Maricopa artist Craig Dourmashkin has a celebration of color on the gallery walls at Maricopa Center for the Arts as the selected artist for June. He often works from black-and-white photographs so he is not distracted or biased by the colors in front of him, and then chooses his own palette of bright hues. Several of his latest works are portraits of late musicians, such as David Bowie and Bob Marley. Visit the gallery during MCE office hours at 20800 N. John Wayne Parkway, Suite 108.

Loren Aragon

School for Advanced Research’s Indian Arts Research Center in Santa Fe, New Mexico, has chosen Maricopa clothing designer Loren Aragon for a fellowship this summer. Three fellowships are given annually to advance the work of mature and emerging Native artists. As the 2017 Ronald and Susan Dubin Fellow, Aragon will be in residence June 15-Aug. 15 and will present an evening lecture and studio tour.

A mechanical engineer by trade, Aragon uses couture fashion to capture ideas predominantly influenced by the pottery culture and traditional dress of his native Acoma Pueblo community. During his time at SAR, he plans to research and employ new, perhaps less practiced methods and techniques in textile design, jewelry and fashion design. Aragon plans to display his work in a capsule collection made up of four one-of-a-kind pieces highlighting textile design and ornamental metal work.

For more on Aragon and samples of his work, visit

This item appears in the June issue of InMaricopa.

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Maricopan Bridger Kimball has file a political committee to run for a District 11 legislative seat. Photo by Tyler Loveall

Though the election is 17 months away, several Arizonans are lining up to run for the state Legislature, including a former Maricopa City Councilman.

Already, Bridger Kimball, a Republican, and Barry McCain, a Democrat, have filed political committees in preparation for campaigning for a House seat in 2018.

State Sen. Steve Smith’s announcement he will challenge Rep. Tom O’Halleran for his seat in the U.S. Congress was the harbinger of shifting within Legislative District 11, which includes Maricopa. The district’s current contingent is Smith in the state Senate, and Vince Leach and Mark Finchem in the state House. All are Republicans.

While Finchem, who lives in Oro Valley, has filed a committee to run for re-election, Leach has shifted his intentions to the state Senate. That leaves one representative seat wide open.

Leach said despite his work in the House, he is more familiar with the Senate side because his introduction to the Legislature came in 2009 when he worked with then-Sen. Al Melvin’s office to get an investment law changed.

Leach said he thinks it is important for the GOP to “retain and represent LD11 in a manner Steve brought to 11 and before that Sen. Melvin.” He said his party is actively “looking for and looking at” potential candidates to fill the House seat he would vacate. He said he has not yet spoken to Kimball.

Kimball was most recently a member of the Maricopa City Council, losing his bid for re-election in November. A former Marine, he owns Caswells Shooting Range in Mesa.

During the last legislative election, McCain ran as a write-in. He is a Navy veteran from Casa Grande.

Filing a political committee with the Secretary of State’s office is the first step to becoming a candidate. Official nomination forms cannot be filed until May 2.

Kimball did not return calls seeking comment.