Waste Not 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.

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 www.wastenotaz.org or call (480) 941-1841.


Credit Union to help with home 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 www.tscu.org 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 free rabies vaccination clinics and spay and neuter clinics in the HALO parking lot at 5231 N. 35th Ave.

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

Check-in for the spay and neuter clinic begins at 7 a.m. Oct. 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.

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 www.unoporuno.org.


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.


Swing into savings with chamber golf card

The Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce is offering a golf savings card for $20 that can save you thousands. The card boasts savings with seven courses in the East Valley, each offering savings on golf fees and some on golf and dining costs.

The courses include the Ahwatukee Country Club, The Lakes Golf Club, The Duke at El Rancho El Dorado, The Raven Golf Club at South Mountain, Club West Golf Club, Ocotillo Golf Resort and Arizona Grand Resort.

The cards are good through Dec. 31, 2010.

The golf savings cards are available at the Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce, 10235 S. 51st St., Suite 185, or online at www.AhwatukeeChamber.com. If your group or organization would like to sell the golf cards, you can make a 50 percent profit with no up-front cost. 

Call (480) 753-7676 for details.


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 www.Rawhide.com.


 Food drive at CoffeeBuzz

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

For information, call (480) 393-3430.

Save by buying State Fair tickets in advance

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 www.azstatefair.com/store. 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 www.azstatefair.com for full details and other discount offers.


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, through Nov. 15; the Fall Music in the Garden Concert Series, through Nov. 6; Legacy: An ASBA Exhibition of the Diane Bouchier Founders Award for Excellence in Botanical Art Recipients, through 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 www.dbg.org.


 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 www.appledumplingcafe.com 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.


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 www.corningware.com.


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 www.designateddriversinc.com or www.designateddriversfoundation.org.


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 www.thetreasurebox.org. For more information about the program or to become a community partner, call Koni Gould at (602) 663-0350.


 Candy buy back to benefit troops

Chamberlain Orthodontics, located at 1055 W. Queen Creek Road in Chandler, is having a Halloween candy buy-back from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Nov. 3, where participants will earn $1 per pound of surrendered candy. The candy will then be sent to troops in Iraq along with notes from kids. Dr. Chamberlain will match $1 per pound to benefit the office’s third annual Giving Tree.

For information, e-mail info@smilestraight.com or visit www.smilestraight.com.


 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 www.zanyzak.com.


 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 cfossum@mvlutheran.org.


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.


 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.


 8th Annual Haunted House and Hayride

The Ahwatukee Community Swim and Tennis Center is offering everyone a spooktacular good time during its 8th Annual Haunted House and Hayride, taking place 6 to 10 p.m. Oct. 23 to 25 at 4700 E. Warner Road, just west of 48th St. behind Blockbuster. A special time slot, 6 to 7:30 p.m., is designated as a “less scary” time for all the younger goblins. 

Visitors will enjoy a haunted hayride through the park and encounters with … well … various creatures of the night. And just as you thought it was safe, more fear awaits as you are dropped off at the front of the eerie, heart thumping, eye closing, scream-curdling … haunted house. But don’t worry - a candy treat awaits brave visitors that successfully escape the house.

Admission is $6 for adults and $4 for kids two to 12. Concessions will also be available. All proceeds will benefit the Center’s youth programs. Tickets are available at the Center in advance or at the door.

For additional information, call (480) 893-3431 or (480) 893-1942. 


 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.


 Bondurant School of High Performance Driving offers gift certificates

Give the gift of a lifetime this holiday with a gift certificate to the Bob Bondurant School of High Performance Driving. Gift certificates are available in any denomination and can be redeemed for all racing and driving courses, as well as Bondurant merchandise. 

To purchase a gift certificate, visit www.bondurant.com or call 800-842-RACE (7223). Course dates are not required at the time of purchase, and gift certificates are valid for one year from date of purchase.


 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 jeffrey.hattrick@ritzcarlton.com, call (602) 522-6643 or visit www.jeffreystea.com/specialevents.


 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.

This year’s event will be held from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. at Durango Juvenile Court, 3131 W. Durango. Children will enjoy hanging out with the Suns Gorilla, face painting, ice cream, and a free family portrait. Volunteers and donations are needed.

For more information, call Gina Meyer at (602) 532-4090, ext. 4261.


 Tempe holiday events schedule

Downtown Tempe will offer the following holiday events:

• APS Fantasy of Lights Opening Night Parade, Presented by Kiwanis Club of Tempe, Nov. 28, 5 to 9 p.m., Mill Avenue District, free admission. Features Light-Up-A-Luminaria sales and special exhibitors, the parade and the arrival of Santa Claus.

• 41st Annual Fall Tempe Fall Festival of Arts, Dec. 4 to 6, Mill Avenue District, free admission. Features original fine art and crafts, the Arizona Wine Festival, Kids Innovation Station Presented by APS and other activities and entertainment.

• APS Fantasy of Lights Boat Parade, Dec. 12, Tempe Beach Park and Tempe Town Lake, free admission. Features free hands-on kids activities, special “Town Lake Turns 10” birthday celebration displays and activities, live entertainment, food and beverage vendors, Santa’s arrival, a concert by as many as 85 tuba players who comprise “Tuba Christmas,” Light-Up-A-Luminaria display throughout the park, METRO Light Rail’s grand illumination of the Tempe Town Lake bridge and the Lighted Boat Parade showcasing dozens of festively-decorated and lighted boats.

• Mill Avenue Holiday Lighting Display, Nov. 28 to Jan. 1, free viewing. Features festively-lighted trees along Mill Avenue and adjacent streets for pedestrian holiday enjoyment.

For more information on the APS Fantasy of Lights, go to www.downtowntempe.com and click on “FOL.” For Tempe Festival of the Arts details, go to www.tempefestivalofthearts.com.


 Fiesta del Tlaquepaque holiday events

Tlaquepaque, an arts and crafts village nestled beneath the shade of the sycamores on the banks of Oak Creek in Sedona, will host the following holiday events:

• Festival of Trees, 10 a.m. to close Nov. 27 through Dec. 6. Area artists and galleries will have over 30 Christmas trees on display fully decorated in fun and exquisite ways. Kick off your holiday season with a beautiful themed tree already pre-decorated by making a bid on the silent auction bid sheets. Bids may be checked through 4 p.m. Dec. 6. Proceeds from will benefit Toys for Tots, Camp Soaring Eagle and the Waldorf School. For additional information, call (772) 643-2742.

• Festival of Lights, 3 to 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 12. The cherished tradition involves the lighting of 6,000 luminarias in the courtyards and walkways. Dozens of entertaining events, including performances by carolers, musicians and dancers, will take place, along with a visit by Santa. Hear the River of Life Tabernacle Choir at 5:30 p.m. Specially designated luminarias honoring cancer survivors and victims may be purchased in advance. For details, call (928) 282-4838.

To learn more about Tlaquepaque, visit www.tlaq.com.


 Applications now being accepted for 2010 Master Gardener training

The University of Arizona Cooperative Extension Maricopa County Master Gardener Program holds certification classes throughout the Valley twice yearly. The classes teach future Master Gardener Volunteers the details on how to successfully garden in the Valley.

Topics that will be covered in the Master Gardener class include Basic Botany, Propagation, Cacti and Succulents, Turf, Citrus, Plant Diagnosis, Soils and Fertilizer, Vegetables and Herbs, and much more.

In 2010, classes are being held on the following dates and locations: Tuesdays Jan. 12 to May 4, 2010, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Desert Breeze Police Substation, 251 N. Desert Breeze Blvd., Chandler, application deadline is Nov. 30; and Tuesdays July 13 to Nov. 2, 2010, 9:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, 4341 E. Broadway Road, Phoenix, application deadline is May 31, 2010.

The Web site http://cals.arizona.edu/maricopa/garden/mgclass.htm will acquaint anyone interested in becoming a Master Gardener volunteer with all the information needed to apply to the program.

For more information, contact Debbie at (602) 827-8200, ext. 308 or dmauldin@cals.arizona.edu or Kristen at (602) 827-8200, ext. 311 or krwagner@cals.arizona.edu.


 Farmers Market

The Arizona Community Farmers Markets Group hosts a farmers market on Sundays in the Ahwatukee Swim and Tennis Center parking lot at 4700 E. Warner Road, just west of 48th Street. Summer hours are 8 to 11 a.m.

Admission is free. The market is family friendly, and canine good citizens are welcome.

For more information, visit www.arizonafarmersmarkets.com.


 VNSA wants your books

VNSA (Volunteer Nonprofit Service Association), a local, all-volunteer nonprofit corporation, needs donations of gently used books, paperbacks, videos, CDs, DVDs, puzzles, books on tape or CD and any other book-related items for the 54th Annual VNSA Used Book Sale scheduled for Feb. 13 and 14, 2010. Proceeds from the book sale will benefit Valley nonprofit agencies that serve families and children in need.

Tax deductible donations of books can be made at the VNSA book collection box at Bashas’ at 4855 E. Warner Road (look for cream colored box featuring the VNSA owl). Home or business pickups can be arranged by calling (602) 265-6805.

More information is available at www.vnsabooksale.org.


 2010 Real Gardens for Real People Garden Tour

The Master Gardener volunteers from the University of Arizona Cooperative Extension, Maricopa County will host the Ninth Annual Real Gardens for Real People Tour to be held from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday, March 13.

The public is invited to view the home gardens of certified Master Gardeners in the historic vicinity of the Central Corridor in Phoenix.

Guest speakers will be onsite at the various gardens to give talks and answer gardening questions on many different topics, from soil and irrigation basics to attracting wildlife and growing edible treats in your garden.

For information or tickets, visit www.maricopamastergardener.com/gardentour.htm.


 Support domestic abuse awareness, recovery

Sunsational Cruises and Bravery Project are partnering to offer a journey of recovery. An escape to sea supporting domestic abuse awareness sets sail June 6, 2010, from Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The 2010 Bravery Project Cruise is a seven-night cruise to the eastern Caribbean with rates beginning at $979 per person for double occupancy. For each confirmed booking made through Polly Waln at Sunsational Cruises, a portion of the proceeds will be donated to support Bravery Project.

While enjoying the scenery from the deck, travelers will also be treated to original artwork exhibited by creator Florschuetz.

For details, visit www.braveryproject.org.


Classes offered for un- and under-employed

Training to YOU, a computer technology center located at 2200 N. Central Ave., Suite 100, is offering local un- and under-employed persons a unique opportunity to update their Microsoft Office skills. A number of half-day classes are available each week, and empty seats are available on a “pay-what-you-can” basis.

Class size is limited to 12, and each student receives instructor-led classroom training and a manual for ready reference. Fees are normally $120, but un- or under-employed people are only asked to pay what they can afford.

For more information or to register, visit www.trainingtoYOU.com or call (602) 266-1500..


Woodworkers looking for projects

The Ahwatukee Woodworkers Club gets together on Thursdays to work on charity projects and is currently looking for more projects to take on.

Past projects have included making plaques for Phoenix Children’s Hospital, building tables and chairs for preschools and even making model MRI machines for doctors to explain the procedure to children to ease their fears. A model doll house kit was donated to the group, so members built it and held a raffle to raise money to support the club. In another project, models of homes in Tempe were built for the Tempe Historical Society that were raffled in a fundraiser for the society. The group is currently busy making cubbies for a local preschool.

The club is located near the Ahwatukee Recreation Center and is part of the Ahwatukee Retirement Community.

Projects are needed, and organizations such as schools, hospitals, churches or other charities in need of something built or made are asked to contact president Tom Rosenthal at (480) 275-6631.


Older children and larger sibling groups need adoption, too

Christian Family Care Agency hopes to draw attention to two very special groups of kids who need adoptive homes – children over the age of 10 and children from larger sibling groups (three or more children).

Louise Gonzales, of Christian Family Care Agency’s Phoenix office, said while progress is being made in these two areas, the need for loving parents willing to adopt these kids is still tremendous.

Gonzales said parents willing to adopt children from these two areas often will move through the adoption process more quickly. She added that a parent’s age isn’t usually as big an issue when it comes to adopting an older child.

An adoptive parent’s bank account also isn’t necessarily a barrier. For more information, call (602) 234-1935 or visit www.cfcare.org.


YMCA’s OPAS program

Y OPAS (Outreach Programs for Ahwatukee Seniors) is a volunteer program of the Ahwatukee Foothills Family YMCA providing support services for seniors, 62 years and older, who live in Ahwatukee Foothills. Transportation, shopping and errands, friendly visiting, caregiver relief, business help and household assistance are some of the services provided by Y OPAS volunteers.

If you, or someone you know would like to use its services, or if you are interested in volunteering, call (602) 212-6088. Volunteers that can help seniors with transportation and friendly visiting are especially needed.

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