Fridays are free dump days

Maricopa County Solid Waste Management is offering the public Free Fridays in October (7 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 9, 16, 23 and 30) to dump trash and recyclables at any one of its six transfer stations across the county as part of its “Take It to the Dump” campaign. Locations are Aguila, 48848 N. 531 Ave., Aguila 85320; Cave Creek, 3955 E. Carefree Hwy., Phoenix 85331; Hassayampa, 32450 W. Salome Hwy., Arlington 85322; Morristown, 40135 N. Hwy. 60, Morristown 85342; New River, 41835 N. Lake Pleasant, New River 85087; and Rainbow Valley, 17795 S. Rainbow Valley, Goodyear 85338.

Anyone taking advantage of these free Fridays will also be given a coupon for their next visit when they come back with a bag of recyclables.

Illegal dumping, sometimes referred to as desert dumping, blight and open dumping, is a crime punishable by up to six months imprisonment and a $2,500 fine. With so many locations across the county, Maricopa County Solid Waste Management makes is easy to do the right thing.

For details, go to or call (602) 506-DUMP (3867).


Lions Club sponsors children’s program

The main focus of the Ahwatukee Lions Club is making sure no child in need of eyeglasses has to go without them. Per requests from school nurses, every child from a low-income family that needs eyeglasses is referred to the club. The club then sends those applications on to the Arizona Lions Vision Center or PerSpectacles Optical, where the children are tested and receive new eyeglasses as needed. Although a small co-pay is requested, if the family cannot afford it, the glasses are given at no charge. Every child in Ahwatukee Foothills, as well as some from Roosevelt School District, can receive exams and eyeglasses from the club.

Club members will be taking donations in front of Fry’s at 36th Street and Ray Road on Oct. 17 and 18.

If you are interested in joining the club or have any other questions, contact Gene Hardin at (480) 893-2525. The club meets for lunch on the first and third Wednesday of each month at the Grace Inn.


Food drive starts at The CoffeeBuzz

The CoffeeBuzz, 4804 E. Chandler Blvd., Suite 110, is hosting a food drive for St. Mary’s Food Bank from Oct. 1 to Jan. 1. Non-perishable foods (pasta, canned food, cereal) and donations are being accepted.

For information, call (480) 393-3430.


Doomtown at Rawhide - ‘Refuge of the Unwanted’

Rawhide’s annual Doomtown event returns this year, adding extra goblins and goo to complement the already haunting experience. The new Halloween season brings a new saga for the residents of Doomtown. The Rawhide Roughriders bring you fantastic stunts and bone rattling explosions, plus the spine chilling Train of Terror and the Haunted Hike.

Rawhide will decorate in Halloween theme. Children and adults alike are invited to experience two spine-chilling haunted houses this year, The Crypt and The Asylum, brought together by Cryptic Illusions.

Rawhide is located at Wild Horse Pass Boulevard, Exit 162, off Interstate 10 east. Doomtown is open evenings Wednesdays to Sundays.

For more information, visit


Save on advance State Fair admission tickets

The Arizona State Fair will run Oct. 16 to Nov. 8 (closed Mondays) at the fairgrounds, located at 1826 W. McDowell Road.

Get a bargain on Fair admission when you purchase tickets in advance online at The public has until midnight on Oct. 15 to take advantage of this pre-sale deal. Admission tickets will be discounted by 40 percent to $6 for adults, $3 for children (ages 5 to 13) and seniors. Children under 5 are free. Also available, with 10 percent more value per card, are the RCS Fun Passes (good on rides and games).

Check out for full details and other discount offers.



AUTOstesiologist, PlastLOC Surgeon, VISAcular Specialist and LOANcologist HELP with finances

On Oct. 1, Tempe Schools Credit Union launched its first HELP program. The program, which stands for Health Education Loan Program, will concentrate around reduced interest rates on the most popular loan products and loan consolidation with “fiscal checkups” and special loan experts that can help members by consolidating loans and providing the HELP they need in this tough economy.

In October the staff at Tempe Schools Credit Union will wear scrubs and be identified with their name badges and area of expertise. For information, visit or any of the three branch locations in the East Valley. The nearest branch is at 4850 W. Chandler Blvd. in Chandler.


Free spay/neuter and rabies vaccination clinics

Maricopa County Animal Care and Control’s Uno por Uno program is offering three free rabies vaccination clinics and two free spay and neuter clinics in the HALO parking lot at 5231 N. 35th Ave.

Check-in for the spay and neuter clinics begins at 7 a.m. Oct. 4 and 18 and is first come, first serve. Show up early as the mobile unit only takes an average of 25 animals, depending on size. Do not give food or water to pets after 10 p.m. the night before the surgery. No hernias or cryptorchid males, pregnant or in-heat females. Animals must be at least 2 pounds. There is a limit of two pets per household.

The rabies vaccination clinics run from 8 to 11 a.m. Oct. 7, 15 and 28. Animals must be in good health and at least three months old.

For all clinics, dogs must be on a leash less than 6 feet in length, and cats need to be in carriers. 

For more information, visit


Green Fuel Technologies celebrates with Fall Festival

Fall colors will include green this year as Green Fuel Technologies celebrates its annual Fall Festival. From 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 3, Green Fuel’s Phoenix headquarters at 2801 Willetta St. will buzz with an open house celebration featuring music, food and drink, education, exhibitions and entertainment for all ages.

For more information and directions, call (602) 269-9206 or visit


Shoe drive to benefit Soles4souls

In recognition of its National Boot Week, Bakers invites shoe lovers everywhere to donate a pair of gently-worn boots to people in need Oct. 4 through 13. In return for donating, Bakers will reward each customer 10 percent off a pair of new boots. All 222 Bakers stores will donate all boots collected from customers to Soles4Souls. In addition, Bakers will collect a $1 donation at the register from any customer that chooses to provide further support to Soles4Souls. 

The gently-worn footwear and/or monetary donations will be collected to give to a person in need, whether they are victims of a natural disaster or subject to living in extreme poverty.

The nearest Bakers is at Chandler Fashion Center, 3111 W. Chandler Blvd., Chandler.

People and companies interested in donating may also visit


Top gift-wrapper will win $10K cash prize

On Friday, Dec. 4, eight gift-wrappers – four amateurs and four professionals (anyone who is currently or has previously earned income as a gift wrapper at a department store, specialty store, etc. is considered a professional) – will leave no bow untied as they compete for a $10,000 cash prize and the title of the “Scotch Brand Most Gifted Wrapper” for 2009. Held at New York City’s Rockefeller Center, the eight contestants will show off their creativity, technique and style as they go bow to bow in this gift-wrapping competition.

To enter, describe in 100 words or less why you or someone you know has what it takes to be crowned this year’s best gift wrapper. The person who nominates the grand-prize winner will also receive $1,000 for his or her winning recommendation. For a complete set of rules, visit

Entries must be received no later than Oct. 5 and may be e-mailed to, faxed to (212) 679-6607 or mailed to Scotch Brand Most Gifted Wrapper Contest, c/o Hunter Public Relations, 41 Madison Ave., 5th Floor, New York, NY 10010.


Free emergency food boxes

Local families are eligible for free food boxes sponsored by Divine Word Ministries in partnership with the United Food Bank of Mesa.

The Emergency Food Boxes distribution takes place from 8 a.m. until 3 p.m. every Saturday at Divine Word Ministries, 2115 W. Guadalupe, Suite 103, Mesa. Emergency food boxes are limited to one food box per family.

Divine Word Ministries is a nonprofit organization dedicated and committed to reaching the community and drawing families and individuals who are in need of spiritual guidance and a life changing experience.

For more information, or if you would like to donate food, contact the church at (480) 820-0224.


What’s happening at the DBG

The Desert Botanical Garden, 1201 N. Galvin Parkway, is offering a variety of events and exhibitions, including Mariposa Monarca, Sept. 26 to Nov. 15; the Fall Music in the Garden Concert Series, Oct. 2 to Nov. 6; Legacy: An ASBA Exhibition of the Diane Bouchier Founders Award for Excellence in Botanical Art Recipients, Oct. 3 to Jan. 3; Fall Plant Sale, Oct. 17 and 18; The Great Pumpkin Festival, Oct. 22 to 29; Dia de los Muertos, Oct. 31 and Nov. 1; Native American Recognition Days Music Celebration, Nov. 7 and 8; Corks & Cactus, Nov. 13; Chiles & Chocolate Festival, Nov. 14 and 15; Allan Houser: Tradition to Abstraction, Nov. 21 to May 31; Berlin Agave Yucca Forrest opens, Nov. 21; and Las Noches de las Luminarias, selected nights Dec. 3 to 30.

For more information, call (480) 941-1225 or visit




Aunt Chilada Salsa Cup Challenge Oct. 14

Aunt Chilada’s, 2021 W. Baseline Road, Tempe (next to Arizona Grand Resort), will host its first Salsa Cup Challenge from 6 to 9 p.m. Oct. 14. Local fire departments will compete for the title of “Best Salsa,” and the winning salsa will be featured at Aunt Chilada’s Tempe for one month.

All proceeds will be donated to the Foundation for Burns and Trauma for its Camp Courage program.

With entry fee ($10 for adults, free for children 12 and under), guests will enjoy street tacos, tours of fire department trucks and live music provided by Jaleo, an Arizona-based Latin band offering Afro Cuban, Puerto Rican and Columbian rhythms.

For information, call (602) 431-6470.


Waste Not 19th Annual Empty Bowls event Oct. 16

Waste Not, a Phoenix-based organization dedicated to collecting and distributing perishable food to a diverse network of agencies that feed the hungry, will hold its 19th annual Empty Bowls Event from 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m. Oct. 16 in the Grotto at the Arizona Center, 400 E. Van Buren.

A wide array of one-of-a-kind bowls made by the Arizona Clay Association will be available for purchase, most for a $12 donation to help support Waste Not’s food recovery and delivery program. Other specialty items will also be available, and Sam’s Café will supply lunch to all those purchasing a bowl.

The Empty Bowls event was created to raise awareness for the great number of Valley residents that go hungry each day. In fact, the $12 cost of the bowl provides 75 people with a nutritious meal. Waste Not’s refrigerated trucks pick up good, perishable food from local restaurants, caterers and resorts and delivers to over 80 local agencies that supply food and meals to those in need.

For more information, visit or call (480) 941-1841.


SanTan Apple Festival taking applications

The Apple Dumpling Café will host its fifth annual SanTan Apple Festival, Apple Barn Bazaar and A-Peeling Apple Cooking Contest from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 7, at Higley High School, 4068 E. Pecos Road, Gilbert. Higley Educational Foundation, The Wellness Community Arizona – Southeast Valley Project and Pan de Vida Foundation of Queen Creek will benefit from this year’s charity event.

Vendors, artists, family cooks, health care providers, car enthusiasts, celebrity judges and family style entertainers are encouraged to apply by the Friday, Oct. 16, deadline. Applications are available at or by calling Sue or Floyd Bailey at (480) 279-3879.


SAMHSA awards grant to Arizona Behavioral Health and the Hope Network

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) is awarding grants totaling almost $81.5 million over five years to local organizations throughout the country working to end chronic homelessness in their communities. Arizona Behavioral Health Corporation (ABC) and the Hope Network are among the 43 recipients nationally to receive this award.

Under the grant program, ABC will be awarded up to $400,000 per year for up to five years and will serve approximately 100 individuals each year. This grant program will be administered by SAMHSA’s Center for Mental Health Services.


AF garage sale extravaganza

Ahwatukee Foothills will join together to have one big weekend of garage sales and more on Saturday, Oct. 24.

The Ahwatukee Foothills News will map garage sales, fundraisers, pet rescues, sidewalk sales and more on a big map – making it one great day for getting out and about in Ahwatukee!

Take advantage of the traffic and have your group, organization, school/church group or pet rescue raise awareness by hosting an event at your home or business. For details, call Elaine, AFN classified manager, at (480) 898-7926.


Haunted House needs volunteers

Volunteers are needed for the Eighth Annual Haunted House and Hayride taking place 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 23 to 25 at the Ahwatukee Community Swim and Tennis Center, 4700 E. Warner Road. Volunteers may work two to four hours on one day, two days or all three days. The hosts are primarily looking for dependable high school students in need of community service hours and/or have an interest or background in theatrical productions.

Proceeds from this annual event help raise money for youth programs.

Call Susan at (480) 893-1942 or e-mail if you are interested.


Eighth Annual Holiday boutique seeks artists, crafters

Artists and crafters are invited to participate in the Eighth Annual Holiday Shoppe at Arizona Community Church, 9325 S. Rural Road, Tempe. Vendor registrations will be accepted until Oct. 16 or until all spaces are sold.

Over 100 spaces are available. Vendor setup will be from 4 to 7 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 12, and the Shoppe will run from 9 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. Friday, Nov. 13, and 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 14.

To download a vendor packet, go to, click on “Ministries” then “Women’s” then “Holiday Shoppe.” Or stop by the church between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to pick up a packet, contact Kay at (602) 549-2267 or to have one e-mailed to you.


Lite baking recipe contest

To highlight the relaunch of CorningWare SimplyLite, the CorningWare brand is sponsoring a national recipe contest inviting consumers to submit original low-fat, low-calorie “lite” baking recipes.

The recipe contest runs through Dec. 31, and the grand prize winner will receive $5,000.

For details, visit


Designated Drivers Foundation comes to Valley

The Designated Drivers Foundation is a non-profit 501c3 organization designed to create awareness about the perils of drinking and driving, educate the public about available driving programs and fund sensible alternatives to drinking and driving.

The program also offers a designated driver service, which provides drivers to transport clients in their own vehicle, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

For more information or to take advantage of the free ride service, bar owners and restaurateurs may call 1-877-456-RIDE (7433) and request a free ride card or visit or


Food distributor launches food drive benefiting Ariz. residents

The Treasure Box, an economical meal program developed by San Diego-based Good Source Solutions, provides quality, nutritious food for everyone trying to stretch their food dollars. Treasure Box can feed a family of four for almost a week or an individual for nearly one month!

The Treasure Box is able to leverage its buying power through partnerships with more than 500 well-known and popular food brands to provide a pre-assembled, frozen box packed with $75 to $100 worth of food offered to individuals and families for just $30 per week.

The program has partnered with churches across the Valley to offer this unique opportunity. Pickup locations include Tempe Nazarene Church, 3929 S. Rural Road, and First Baptist Church of Tempe, 4525 S. McClintock Drive, in Tempe. Deliveries are made monthly, and October orders must be placed by Oct. 7 for pickup on Oct. 24.

Individuals and families may place their orders online at For more information about the program or to become a community partner, call Koni Gould at (602) 663-0350.


Golfland Fright Nights return in October 

Golfland, located at 155 W. Hampton Ave. in Mesa, will evolve into a chilling site for Halloween thrill seekers from Oct. 1 to 31 featuring the The Gauntlet Haunted House. For those too squeamish for The Gauntlet, visit Spooktacular Golf, the 18-hole miniature golf course that has undergone a terrifying transformation.

Tickets for The Gauntlet are $12 and operating hours are 7 to 10 p.m. Thursdays, 7 p.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays and 7 to 10 p.m. Sundays.

Spooktacular Golf will be available 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Mondays to Thursdays, 11 a.m. to midnight Fridays and Saturdays and 11 a.m. to 10 p.m. Sundays. The cost is $6.50 for children and $7.75 for adults. Golf sales end one hour before closing time.

An Unlimited Fear and Fun Package is available for $29.95 and features unlimited visits to The Gauntlet, miniature golf, race cars and bumper boats.

For more information, call (480) 834-8319 or visit


Breast Cancer Awareness Month honored the Zany way

In honor of October being Breast Cancer Awareness Month, Zany Zak is launching new Breast Cancer Awareness products in the form of pet leashes and collars. Twenty-five percent of the sales from these products will be donated to the Susan G. Komen for the Cure Foundation.

For details, visit


Church offering rent-a-space parking lot sale

Mountain View Lutheran Church, 11002 S. 48th St., will host a parking lot sale from 7 a.m. to noon Saturday, Nov. 7, and community members are invited to rent a space to bring their stuff, staff their booth and handle their own money.

Booths are available for $25 each and must be reserved in advance. The fee includes chairs for each booth and advertising. Six-foot tables are available for the first 60 reservations.

The sale is sponsored by Outreach Ministries and proceeds will go to local charitable organizations. A donation truck will be available after the sale for unsold items. The Outreach Ministry will also hold a coffee and bake sale.

For more information or to make a reservation, call Cindy at (480) 893-2579 or e-mail


Arizona’s Ultimate Women’s Expo

Arizona’s Ultimate Women’s Expo will take place from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Oct. 17 and 18 at the Phoenix Convention Center, featuring inspiring keynote speakers Valerie Bertinelli and Olivia Newton John, 500 shopping booths and a weekend of pampering and rejuvenation for Arizona women.

The expo takes place in October, during National Cancer Awareness Month, with a special emphasis on early detection and healthy living.

Admission is $10. For more information, visit or call (866) 618-3434.  


YMCA offers Monster Ball, Family Fun Night

Gather up the whole family and head over to the YMCA for an evening of monstrous fun on Friday, Oct. 23. The Monster Ball – a Halloween dance, trunk or treat and haunted house family fun event all rolled up into one – will be held from 6 to 8:30 p.m. at the Ahwatukee Foothills YMCA, 1030 E. Liberty Lane.

Windy City DJ’s will emcee the event, and guests are invited to come dressed in costume if they wish. The evening includes dance games, prizes, two haunted houses for young and older children and “trunk-or-treating.”

The cost is $5 for the entire family and includes a slice of pizza, drink, popcorn and the haunted houses.

The trunk-or-treating is free and will only run from 6 to 7:30 p.m. (guests do not have to pay the $5 fee to the Monster Ball if they will only do the trunk-or-treat). Guests that volunteer to decorate their trunks will receive free admission into the Monster Ball.

Proceeds from this event will be donated to the YMCA “Strong Kids Campaign.”

For more information, call (480) 759-6762.


Winery hosting Kokopelli Krush

Kokopelli Winery, located at 35 W. Boston St. in Chandler, will host the 8th annual Kokopelli Krush Oct. 23 to 25. The Krush is a fun grape stomping competition in which teams of two get in barrels and compete to stomp as many grapes as they can and produce as much juice as possible to win prizes.

The event will feature live music from Jazz to Reggae to Blues, as well as great food and award-winning wine all weekend long.

Hours are 5 p.m. to midnight Friday, Oct 23, with Krush heats starting at 7:30 and 10 p.m. Three heats take place on Saturday - 1:30, 7 and 10 p.m. Sunday will have one heat at 1 p.m., and then the finalist from each day will compete for the grand prize. Group participants such as  local schools, churches and businesses are invited  to compete in the new corporate category.

There will also be sponsors displaying their wares, local arts and crafts exhibitors, a kids inflatable play area, travel companies and more. Along with the grand prize trip for two, awards will be given away each day for best krush style and best costume. Corporate team awards and a children’s division 12 and under are new Krush categories this year. Even the worst krushers receive recognition this year with the Hollow Foot Award for the last place finishers in each heat.

There will also be local celebrity hosts.

Registration for the Krush is $20 per team and can be done in advance or the day of the event. Tastings are $10 and include the Kokopelli Krush commemorative glass, six tasting tickets and $2 off every bottle of Kokopelli wine purchased.

If you can’t Krush, come out and cheer, laugh and get great pictures of the event that is sure to please.

For more information, call (480) 792-6927.


Eye Priority offers donations, prizes to teams in November

Ahwatukee optometrist Dr. Kelly de Simone of Eye Priority has an offer for local teams and activity groups: protect your eyes from the sun at bargain prices and raise some cash for your team – or just come in to the office and win a prize.

In an effort to assist groups with much-needed fund-raising, Eye Priority has dubbed November Team Booster Month. Local groups can register to participate, and their players, coaches, parents and fans will receive a 25% discount on prescription and nonprescription sunglasses for the month. Prize drawings will go on all month with no purchase required, and the prizes include designer sunglasses, perfumes and gift cards. At the end of November, Eye Priority will tally each team’s sales, and 10% of the proceeds will be returned to the team in cash! 

Eye Priority is located at 15725 S. 46th St., south of Chandler Boulevard.

For details and sign-up forms, call (480) 893-2300.


Teddy Bear Holiday Teas to be highlighted by Jeffrey Bear Storybook Contest

The Ritz-Carlton, Phoenix Afternoon Tea Mascot, Jeffrey the Bear, takes center stage for the first annual Jeffrey Bear Tea holiday story-telling competition, to be conducted throughout this fall’s Teddy Bear Tea season.

Teddy Bear Tea will served Friday through Sunday Nov. 28 through Dec. 19 in the Lobby Lounge. Adults will enjoy a traditional afternoon tea while children will nibble on sandwiches followed by teddy bear treats. Hot chocolate and marshmallows complete the Tea. Children can also look forward to a visit from Mr. Ted E. Bear and special story time with Jeffrey. 

Teddy Bear Tea moves into the Grand Ballroom Dec. 20 to 22, when Mrs. Claus will be in charge of story time and Santa comes for a visit.

Teddy Bear Tea is $35 for adults and $25 for children under 12. Reservations are available by calling (602) 468-0700.

This year Jeffrey the Bear also wants to travel the world, and guests are invited to tell the story of his voyage. Children and the young at heart may write a one-page (approximately 500 words) story about one of his adventures to be included in the book titled The Magical Journeys of Jeffrey Bear. Entries are due by Nov. 20. For details, e-mail, call (602) 522-6643 or visit


National Adoption Day is Nov. 21

National Adoption Day is held one day a year (Nov. 21) and is a collective national effort to raise awareness of children in foster care waiting to find permanent, loving families. National Adoption Day has made the dreams of thousands of children come true by working with policymakers, practitioners and advocates to finalize adoptions and find permanent, loving homes for children in foster care.

Since 2000, the goal of National Adoption Day has been that every community in the U.S. will have an annual, institutionalized, self-driven celebration of National Adoption Day on or near the Saturday before Thanksgiving, which can include finalizing adoptions of children from foster care and celebrating all adoptions. In total, more than 25,000 children have been adopted from foster care on National Adoption Day.

Last year Phoenix was No. 1 in the nation with over 250 adoptions completed.

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