Phoenix Parks and Rec seeks nonprofits for shuttered facilities

The Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department is seeking area nonprofit organizations interested in operating and maintaining city facilities that have been closed due to budget reductions. Over the next six months, the department will issue requests for proposals seeking organizations to operate and maintain more than a dozen shuttered facilities.

The first phase of the process begins July 20 and will cover RFPs to operate and maintain five facilities: the South Mountain Environmental Education Center, the North Mountain Visitor Center, South Phoenix Youth Center, Thunderbirds Teen Center and Arizona Horse Lovers Park. Additional facilities, including Telephone Pioneer Park and Telephone Pioneer Park Pool, will be posted later this summer.

Interested organizations will be able to download the first of the RFP materials on the city website at beginning July 20. Until the RFP process officially opens on this date, organizations with questions may call (602) 534-1504 or request information by sending an e-mail to

Overall, the Parks and Recreation Department is seeking organizations that share the department's mission - "Building healthy communities through parks, programs, and partnerships" - understand each facility's intended use and demonstrate the capacity to provide services at a level similar to those the city offered prior to budget reductions. By issuing RFPs, the departments is insuring a competitive, fair and streamlined process that can be adapted to the unique requirements for each facility and the community it serves.

Chandler BBQ Co. set to open

The new Chandler BBQ Co. at 2040 S. Alma School Road in Chandler will have a soft opening on July 20 and a grand opening on July 23.

For more information, visit or call (480) 688-8351.

Sheraton Wild Horse Pass offers Native American Family Exploration Camp

In an effort to continue its commitment to tourism that inspires while it teaches, Sheraton Wild Horse Pass Resort & Spa has created the all new Native American Family Exploration Camp. During the camp, the whole family will be led through an authentic and respectful journey of the ancient cultures of Pima and Maricopa People who have called the Gila River Indian Community home for thousands of years.

Offered July 23 and 24, July 30 to Aug. 1 and again Aug. 6 and 7, these packages provide the ideal way to expand your children's horizons, keep their minds engaged during the summer months and build lasting family memories.

This package is suggested for children ages 5 to 12.

For complete details, (602) 225-0100 and mention the CSI2010 promotion code or visit

Liles named President, CEO of Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association

The Arizona Hospital and Healthcare Association (AzHHA) Board of Directors has named Ahwatukee Foothills resident Laurie Liles as its new president and chief executive officer, following an extensive national search. Liles, who now leads AzHHA's legislative and regulatory advocacy team, will begin her new role on Sept. 7.

Currently senior vice president of public affairs, Liles joined AzHHA in 1991. Through her successful implementation of AzHHA's strategic advocacy agenda, Liles has positively influenced public policy on behalf of the state's hospitals and healthcare community.

Liles has held progressively more responsible positions during her 19-year career with AzHHA, culminating most recently with her multiple leadership roles in public affairs. She has worked closely with the chief executive officers of AzHHA member hospitals throughout Arizona and looks forward to her new role.

Liles will succeed John Rivers, who has served as AzHHA president and CEO since 1986. Rivers will be available in a consulting role until his retirement becomes official in Jan. 2011.

Lewis joins JDRF board

Kimberly Lewis of Ahwatukee Foothills-based Sovereign Finance is one of five new members of the board of directors of The Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) Desert Southwest Chapter.

The board of directors drives the fundraising and outreach efforts of the Desert Southwest Chapter, which raised nearly $5 million in fiscal year 2009 through fundraising events such as The Promise Ball and annual Walk to Cure Diabetes.

For more information about the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation, visit

Ahwatukee Chamber events

July 19, 26, 8 to 9 a.m., Ahwatukee Chamber Professionals Leads Group, Chamber offices.

July 21, 28, 8 a.m., LeadzSmart Networking Group, Chamber offices.

July 20, noon, Business Builders Leads Group, Chamber Offices.

July 29, 8 a.m., Get to Know Your Chamber, Chamber Offices. RSVP to

The Chamber offices are at 10235 S. 51st St., Suite 185. For more information, call (480) 753-7676 or visit

M&I Bank hosting school supply drive

Across Arizona, schools are facing record budget cuts. Even in the best financial years, it is estimated that a teacher will spend between $400 and $700 of their own money on supplies for their classroom. This includes writing and creative tools, motivational materials, audio/visual aids and books, among other things.

M&I Bank Arizona is helping support these valuable community members by hosting a school supply drive during the month of July. Each branch has partnered with a neighborhood school to help teachers provide the most enriching educational experience possible. The M&I branch at 4835 E. Warner Road (at 48th Street) has partnered with Ahwatukee Foothills Prep, and community members are invited to stop in and donate school supply items. All supplies are appreciated; the most requested items are Kleenex, hand sanitizer and pencils.

"Teachers are some of the most valuable and impactful people in each of our lives, which is why every community should value and support them," said Stephen Johnson, M&I Bank Arizona President. "At M&I Bank, we enjoy taking an active role in aiding local educators and encouraging residents to do the same. This year, most school requests include items as simple as pencils, copy paper, Kleenex, and hand sanitizer."

Chandler Chamber needs golfers

The Chandler Chamber of Commerce is looking for people who want to have a fun day of golfing while helping raise funds at the annual Chandler Chamber Golf Challenge. The event will begin at 7:30 a.m. Tuesday, Sept. 14, at Ocotillo Golf Resort in Chandler and features breakfast, goodie bags for golfers, raffles, a silent auction, team photos, golfer gift and awards luncheon.

Tournament fees are $175 for an individual player or $700 for a foursome. Corporate sponsorship foursomes are available. Raffle and auctions donations are also requested. Registration forms are available on the Chamber's website at or by calling the Chamber.

Proceeds will be returned to the community through many business development programs and events presented by the Chandler Chamber of Commerce throughout the year.

To reserve your foursome or to advertise your business by donating a raffle item, call Karen Hall at (480) 963-4571.

Foothills Floral Gallery hosts weekly flower happy hours

Foothills Floral Gallery at 4910 E. Ray Road hosts flower happy hours from noon to 5 p.m. every Friday featuring half price on select loose stems and 30% off all gift items (through July 31).

For information, call (480) 496-0202 or visit

Promote your business, cater Chamber breakfast

Are you a new business? Or, maybe an existing one that would like to donate your culinary selections to let people in the community get a taste of what you are all about? Then the Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce's monthly Get to Know Your Chamber breakfast is the place for you! The breakfasts are generally attended by about 30 people that you would need to cater for.

If this is something you are interested in, contact Christine Hamel at (480) 753-7676.

East Valley Business Breakfast Group

The East Valley Business Breakfast Group meets on the third Thursdays of each month from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. in the Community Room at the Chandler Police Department, 251 N. Desert Breeze Blvd., Chandler.

The EVBBG is a not-for-profit volunteer organization promoting growth of small, minority, women and diverse business owners. No membership is required, and services are provided by experts and professional mentors.

For more information, e-mail

LeadZSmart business meetings on Wednesdays at chamber

A LeadZSmart Leads Group meets every Wednesday at the Ahwatukee Chamber of Commerce, 10235 S. 51st Street, Suite 185. A meet and greet starts at 7:30 a.m. and the meeting is from 8 to 9 a.m.

All who attend will have a 60-second intro at the beginning of the meeting, followed by a 10-minute member presentation. The meeting will also include a helpful lead referral lesson and group discussion.

For more information, e-mail Christine Marek at or Judy Young at

Interested in hosting a chamber event?

Hosting an event for the Ahwatukee Foothills Chamber of Commerce is a great way to get your business noticed.

Tuesday morning mixers are from 8 to 9 a.m. on the second Tuesday of each month, and Wednesday evening mixers are from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. on the third Wednesday of each month.

For detailed hosting information, contact Christine at (480) 753-7676.

Organizations come together to advance civic engagement and civil dialogue

Five of Arizona's premier organizations have joined forces as a collective catalyst for civic action to help advance the important interests of Arizona. The organizations involved in this special collaboration will host a unique event, It's Up to Me AZ: A Day of Civic Action, from 7:30 a.m. to 8:30 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 23, at the Wyndham Phoenix Downtown, 50 E. Adams St.

All concerned Arizonans are invited to attend either half or full day. Individual full day tickets are $225, the luncheon only is $125 and dinner only is $150. Corporate tables and sponsorship packages are also available. Please contact Tara at (602) 252-9600 or Mary Lee at (602) 452-7000, ext. 7043. A special online portal has been established for this collaboration and event day registration at


(480) 898-7924




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