The News print version

The current and back issues of the Apache Junction & Gold Canyon News are available to read online or for download in PDF form. Click on the button below to see the entire publication, including the business directory, advertisements, coupons, classified ads and crossword puzzle.

Community Service Crews

People make mistakes in life. You shouldn’t have to live with that for the rest of your life. I believe in redemption.” This quote from Virginia Governor Terry McAuliffe reminds us that fortune and misfortune can turn on a dime.

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Retirees Recognized

With 466 collective years of service to our community between them, a story that can be told in many ways by the 17 long-term employees who are retiring from the school district this year.

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First Responders Resuscitate Child

An Apache Junction 2-year-old was saved last Thursday, thanks to the quick response of first responders. On June 14, 2018, at approximately 8:30 a.m., the Apache Junction Police Department responded to a residence in the 900 block of West 21st Avenue, Apache Junction.

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Ready for Our Closeup

An independent feature film The Unhealer will include some familiar scenery to Apache Junction denizens. Apache Junction High School and the Bluebird Mine have hosted the crew in the past weeks, and there have been just a few murmurs about the heat. The film explores teen bullying and abuse of power with supernatural twists.

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McIntyre's Journey to A’s Camp

Aiden McIntyre got the baseball bug at age 8, and with it the dream of many young players – getting to The Show. “We lived in Pennsylvania before and baseball wasn’t really that big.

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Sons of the American Legion Fund Playground

The Sons of the American Legion Post #27 came to the rescue of Desert Vista Elementary School, 3701 E. Broadway in Apache Junction, by donating the $4,267.18 needed to complete the inclusive playground equipment on the west side of the campus.

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Roundabout Progress

Those who have recently taken a drive up Apache Trail on their way to the lakes, restaurants, roadside attractions or parks, have seen the extensive construction underway at the road’s intersection with Superstition Boulevard. Passing through the construction zone without delays has been relatively smooth, but soon that will change.

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Mare Saved by SFMD

On May 22, I received a call for help from Velma, who is a friend and neighbor in our Gold Canyon neighborhood.Her horse, Lucy, had been down for more than 6 hours and couldn’t get up. Velma and her husband, Curtis, had tried everything they could think of, and even though she struggled to rise, she still could not stand.

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Donors Thanked

The Mayor and City Council spent time at their meeting on June 5 to thank individuals, organizations and agencies who have generously donated time and money over the past quarter to community projects administered by the city.

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6/5 City Council Meeting

At the Apache Junction City Council Meeting on June 5, 2018, Jan Mason, Deputy City Clerk, was presented with a 25-year Service Award and thanked by City Manager Bryant Powell on behalf of city staff.

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Overdose Reversed

An apparent drug overdose was reversed when local first responders were able to administer Narcan to a victim in time. In a statement from Apache Junction Police Department (AJPD), officials said: “On Friday, June 8, 2018, at approximately 3:24 a.m., AJPD was dispatched.

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Youth Matter Session

The Youth Empowerment Partners will be hosting their next event on Saturday, June 16, at Apache Junction High School, 2525 S. Ironwood Drive. The event is scheduled from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. and is for high school and middle school age students and an additional track for parents/ guardians and adults.

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Kachina Greets AJ

Local artist Merrill Orr presided over the installation of his ‘Kachina’ sculpture in downtown Apache Junction on May 31, 2018. The 23 ft. tall steel sculpture stands like a sentinel in the center of downtown, facing the setting sun.

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City Election Candidates

Two candidates for Apache Junction mayor and four city council hopefuls have turned in the required paperwork to the Apache Junction city clerk’s office. The deadline was at 5 p.m. on Wednesday, May 30. The election will be held August 28, 2018.

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Brilliant Students Shine

Students in Apache Junction Unified District’s Gifted/Talented program recently showcased an array of amazing student projects before taking off for summer break. Linda Gering and Robyn Gonzales from the Educational Services Department visited the gifted/talented students at Desert Vista Elementary School to view and evaluate the projects. Both women said the student work was amazing.

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House's Priorities

As Chairman of the Board of Supervisors, Todd House has verbally dragged his heels, providing rationalizations for Johnson Utilities’ actions even as the BOS voted to approve a resolution supporting the ACC investigation into complaints.

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Persistence Pays Off

Proving there’s something to be said for perseverance, Aiden McIntyre’s late-blooming baseball career will continue. McIntyre, a 2014 graduate of Apache Junction High, was selected by the Oakland Athletics in the 22nd round of the Major League Baseball First-Year Player Draft on June 6.

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Seabiscuit’s Jockey

This Saturday, Justify will try to become horse racing’s first Triple Crown winner since 2015 when he attempts to win the Belmont Stakes. Retired jockey Frank Sorci never rode a Triple Crown winner, but he did work with a racing legend. Sorci was a most successful jockey in the 1940s, and one of his side gigs was working out the famous Seabiscuit.

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Judge Fuller Won’t Be Charged

Steven Fuller, a judge for the Pinal County Superior Court will not be charged on allegations of sexually abusing a minor. According to Alan Goodwin, who leads the special victims bureau at the Pima County prosecutor’s office, prosecutors do not have the level of evidence needed to win a conviction.

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Mobile Home Fire

Nobody was hurt in a mobile home fire last Tuesday, May 22. The fire occured in the 900 block of North Acacia Road in Apache Junction. Firefighters from the Superstition Fire & Medical District (SFMD) arrived on the scene around 1:00 p.m. to find smoke showing from the home.

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Community Contributors Honored

The Apache Junction Chamber of Commerce held their 2018 Fry’s Food Community Awards Banquet on Thursday, May 24 at Roadhaven Golf & Tennis Resort in Apache Junction. The annual formal banquet honors outstanding small, medium, large businesses, non-profit, volunteer, teachers, firefighter, police officer and professors for their dedication and outstanding contributions to the community.

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Junior Bull Riding Champ

Logan Reichwald, a seventh grader at Cactus Canyon Junior High School, 801 W. Southern Ave. in Apache Junction, AZ, was named 2018 Arizona Jr. High School Rodeo Association Bull Riding State Champion. Logan has been riding bulls for two years. Before the end of 2017, Logan had won nine championship buckles and was invited to major rodeo and bull riding events for 2018.

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DVES Students Take Top Honors in DAR Contest

Several Desert Vista Elementary School students were recently recognized for winning local, state and national awards in the Junior American Citizens creative arts contest sponsored by the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). The students designed posters, wrote essays and did other work intended to allow students to express their patriotism through the visual and written arts.

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Gilgert, Haro Named to AIA All-4A Softball Squad

For the second consecutive year, Apache Junction senior Mikayla Gilgert was selected as a second-team all-4A softball player. Lady Prospectors outfielder Cori Haro was a first time selection to the all-state second team. Gilgert, who has signed to play collegiately at Georgian Court (N.J.), was earlier named as 4A Black Canyon Region player of the year.

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Road Work on SR 88

The Arizona Department of Transportation advises drivers to plan for delays while crews apply chip seal on State Route 88 beginning near Tortilla Flat and continuing for 7 miles east toward Roosevelt Lake. SR 88 will be narrowed to one alternating lane of travel while pavement preservation work is underway.

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Hitching Post CUP Approved by Council

The Hitching Post establishment was granted a conditional use permit (CUP) to expand its attractions and hold various outdoor activities if it complies with 27 recommendations made by the city’s planning staff. On May 15, 2018, the Apache Junction City Council held a public hearing of an appeal by Evan Bolick, who represents neighbors of the Hitching Post

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AJHS History Teacher Receives Award

Instead of merely teaching history, Alec McDaniel is making some history of his own. The Apache Junction High School History teacher was recently selected as a Claes Nobel Educator of Distinction by the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS). Mr. McDaniel was nominated by a student for showing outstanding dedication and commitment to excellence in the profession.

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19 Tons of Hazardous Waste Collected

Hundreds of area residents deposited more than 19 tons of hazardous waste during the city of Apache Junction’s most recent Household Hazardous Waste collection day. A recently completed final tally of the event showed that 38,145 pounds of hazardous waste was collected from Apache Junction and Pinal County residents.

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Couple Wounded in Domestic Dispute

Last week, two Apache Junction residents were wounded by a single bullet fired by another person. On May 16, 2018, at about 9:20 p.m., Apache Junction Police Department (AJPD) officers were called to a shooting at a residence in the 2200 block of W. Greasewood in Apache Junction.

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DeLoera Confirmed as CCJH Assistant Principal

At the May 17, 2018, Apache Junction Unified School District special Board meeting, Kenny DeLoera was confirmed as the new Assistant Principal at Cactus Canyon Junior High School. DeLoera was one of the three finalists for Apache Junction High School Principal, a position that went to  Chaparral High School Principal Dr. Angela Chomokos.

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May 16 Supervisors Special Session

On May 16, the Pinal County Board of Supervisors (BOS) met in special session. The agenda included a tourism video and discussions of pavement damage restoration fees and penalties, progress on the Pinal Regional Transportation Authority and FY 18/19 budget development. Supervisors also met in executive session for legal advice related to the ACC hearings regarding Johnson Utilities.

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Rx Take-Back Day Yields 514 Pounds

The Apache Junction Police Department (AJPD), in a partnership with the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), collected 514 pounds of surrendered unused and unwanted prescription medication during the National Drug Take-Back Day held on April 28, 2018.

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AJHS Regional Championship Squad

For the second consecutive year, Apache Junction senior Mikayla Gilgert was selected as 4A Black Canyon Region player of the year in a vote of the region coaches. As a pitcher, the right-handed Gilgert was dominant, fashioning a 17-5 record with a 2.71 earned run average, 12 complete games, 11 shutouts, and a no-hitter. She struck out 205, walked 35 and held opponents to a .233 batting average.

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City Talks Trash

The city of Apache Junction is one of the few municipalities in the state without mandatory residential solid waste collection. Homeowners make their own arrangements to hire a service, gather and dispose of solid waste at the local landfill or burn their waste when local and county restrictions are not in effect.

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13th Win for AJHS NJROTC

The Apache Junction High School’s Navy JROTC program received a letter from the Secretary of the Navy that the school’s program was, once again, awarded as a Navy Distinguished Unit. The honor acknowledges the AJHS NJROTC program as one of the best in the nation.

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National Police Week

Every year, the Apache Junction Police Department (AJPD) joins communities across the country that come together during National Police Week—May 13-19. Citizens and law enforcement agencies reserve this time to recognize, honor and remember those officers who made the ultimate sacrifice, as well as the family members, friends and fellow officers they left behind.

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New Principal at AJHS

On Tuesday, May 8, 2018, The Apache Junction Unified School District Governing Board unanimously approved Dr. Angela Chomokos as the new Apache Junction High School principal for the 2018-19 school year. Chomokos is currently principal at Chaparrel High School in the Scottdale Unified School District. Board Member Mike Weaver stated: “I think we’re darn lucky and I’m really appreciative that Dr. Chomokos has opted to come here.”

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Stansberry Leaving AJHS for Mesa Job

Scott Stansberry discovered recently that on the coaching carousel, not only can one door open after one closes, a preferred opportunity can be found at that same door. Stansberry had unsuccessfully applied for the head boys basketball position at Mesa High School, where he previously served as an assistant to Shane Burcar. Next thing he knew, he was the next man up

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Teaching Excellence Award

Jaclyn Chappel, band director and music teacher at Apache Junction High School, is one of four music teachers in the state of Arizona to receive Lead Guitar’s Teaching Excellence Award. Lead Guitar is an organization that establishes permanent classical guitar classes in public schools with low access to the arts.

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Flatiron Park Celebrates 1st Anniversary

The little gem known as Flatiron Community Park was bought out to sparkle last week when Liz Langenbach, director of Apache Junction Parks and Recreation, highlighted its first year. “We have a rough estimate of 10,000 visitors,” she said.

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AJ's 2018-19 Budget

At their work session on Monday, April 30, the Apache Junction City Council began discussions on the proposed 2018-2019 balanced budget submitted by City Manager Bryant Powell. The annual effort by the city’s staff and the professional manner in which the budget is prepared rarely results in controversy of any kind.

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Lady Prospectors 2-2 at 4A State

Apache Junction’s successful softball season ended Tuesday at the Rose Mofford Softball Complex, where Bullhead City Mohave eliminated the Lady Prospectors from the 4A playoffs with a 7-1 victory. The No. 6-seed Lady Thunderbirds (21-12) advanced in Pool B, but lost 4-3 on May 10 to No. 3-seed Glendale Cactus.

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Lost School Days

In an emergency meeting held on Thursday, May 3, 2018, the Apache Junction Unified School District Governing Board addressed two major issues arising from the five-day #RedForEd educator walk-out: approving a policy allowing the district to schedule instructional hours to compensate for school closures and striking an obsolete policy banning any kind of “work stoppage.”

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Chamber Board Members

The Apache Junction Chamber of Commerce, a dynamic business organization that provides opportunities for personal growth, business success and community leadership, is announcing the appointment of three new Board members and two Executive Council Board Members.

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Lady Prospectors Playoffs

Glendale Cactus resided at the top of the 4A softball power poll for most of the season. The No. 3-seed Cobras demonstrated why on May 3 with a 14-3 six-inning defeat of No. 2 Apache Junction in the state tournament Pool B semifinals at Rose Mofford Softball Complex.

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LDM Donates $60,000

The Lost Dutchman Marathon Inc., a volunteer-led organization, raised $60,000 to be given to youth agencies in the community. Funds were raised at this year’s marathon. Among the recipients this year were Apache Junction Parks & Recreation ($20,000) and the Girls on the Run youth running program ($1,250).

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AJ Teachers Joined Statewide Walk-Out

Many Apache Junction schools were closed on Thursday, April 26 when local educators and school support staff walked off the job to protest continued statewide cuts to public education. The coordinated effort was a signal to legislators that the education community is a formidable voting block.

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Business District Boundaries Discussion

Apache Junction is considering new boundaries for the city’s Single Central Business District (SCBD) that would follow the north side of Apache Trail and extend east to Tomahawk Rd. and west to Ironwood Rd.

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Farber Named as 11th SFMD Fire Chief

Mike Farber has been named the 11th fire chief in the 63 year history of the Superstition Fire & Medical District (SFMD) after serving in the interim fire chief position for the past 10 months. In Chief Farber’s short time as the interim fire chief, he has added a second engine company to respond out of Fire Station 263.

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New Fry’s Hitching Post

On Saturday, April 14 Superstition Horsemen’s Association (SHA) and the P&M Trail Riders teamed up and went to work putting in a hitching post at the new Fry’s grocery store. The hitching post is located on the east side of the parking lot near Wendy’s.

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Leo Club Legacy Project

The Apache Junction High School Leo Club dedicated their Legacy Project at the Apache Junction Learning Center (TLC) on Thursday, April 19. The students created original artwork, painting a child-friendly mural on the outside walls of the previously drab and uninviting administrative office, which serves as the entry point to the campus. “I noticed, as I was driving by on the highway, that there was nothing interesting about this building...”

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AJ Educators to Walk-Out April 26

The grassroots group Arizona Educators United (AEU) and the Arizona Education Association (AEA: teachers’ union) conducted a joint press conference at approximately 9 p.m., Thursday, April 19, 2018, to announce the results of the statewide vote. With 57,000 educators responding, 78% voted in favor of a walk-out.

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SUV Strikes Building

A Dodge SUV drove through a building last Friday afternoon taking out the front wall of a business at 1075 S. Idaho Rd. in Apache Junction. The vehicle was driven by one person who was treated at the scene for minor injuries by paramedics from the Superstition Fire & Medical District.

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