AJ Welcomes Community to 1st State of the City

Mayor takes opportunity to buff accomplishments and boost excitement for Apache Junction’s future

On a beautiful, cool, mid-winter’s night in Apache Junction, the city had an opportunity to show off many of the other reasons residents choose to live here.

At the first “State of the City” program, Mayor Jeff Serdy welcomed the community to an evening with city staff, elected officials and dignitaries from the region.

Those who attended the evening program on Feb. 7, 2018, were greeted at the entrance of the Apache Junction High School by smartly uniformed members of the Navy JROTC. With a click of their heels and a “good evening,” attendees were ushered to the Performing Arts Center’s entrance, where a “meet and greet” was in progress.

Classical string quartet music by students under the direction of Sandra Lean filled the air, and guests were encouraged to visit with Mayor Serdy, Pinal County Sheriff Mark Lamb, AJPD Chief Thomas Kelly, Pinal County Superintendent Todd House, SFMD Interim Chief Mike Farber, as well as AJUSD Superintendent Krista Anderson and AJHS Principal and Chamber of Commerce Chair Larry LaPrise.

Also in attendance were all six of the city council members and several city staff members who handed out programs and chatted with visitors.

The program began with a stirring rendition of the national anthem by AJHS sophomore Bria Teumohenga, followed by Mayor Serdy welcoming and listing the invited dignitaries, most of whom were seated.

Following a brief introduction, a video produced by the city’s marketing and production specialist Matt McNulty, featuring stunning drone video, was shown to the audience. The video highlighted Apache Junction’s award-winning water treatment plant, the new Fry’s Marketplace, library, multi-generational center, Flatiron Park and events such as the Lost Dutchman Days parade and rodeo, Veterans Day Parade and Festival of the Superstitions.

Cameos by city staff, elected officials and district leaders called attention to areas that the city is working to improve: providing a regional transportation system, planned land development and infill, holding the state’s feet to fire on restoring Highway User Revenue Funds and getting more community support for schools.

After the video, Larry LaPrise, speaking both on behalf of the high school and the Chamber of Commerce, thanked the JROTC, the music department and the Performing Arts Center for their contributions to the event and introduced the Chamber’s new president and CEO Michael Eastwood.

Mayor Serdy wrapped up the evening by further emphasizing how Apache Junction is reaching out to the region through its participation with Pinal Partnership, East Valley Partnership, Phoenix-Mesa Gateway Airport Authority and Greater Phoenix Economic Council. He stressed a desire to meet with community members who have ideas or concerns, “We would love to meet and mingle.” The featured video can be seen online by visiting https://tinyurl.com/ajsotc.

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