A public hearing on an application requesting rate
adjustment for Ajo Improvement customers came at the same time
Southwest Gas Corporation filed an application to reduce its rates.
While the gas rate decrease went through, Ajo Improvement later
withdrew its request.
The Red Raiders basketball team ended its season with a 7
and 25 record for all games played. The Lady Raiders were in fourth
in the conference with a 9 and 5 record for conference games.
Ajo Stage Line celebrated its 10th anniversary with a
party in the Plaza.
The Ajo District Chamber of Commerce sponsored the annual
Community Clean-up. A few businesses and organizations and many
participated, although the turnout was not as large as organizers had
Ajo Masons provided a picnic lunch for participants following the
Ajo Vision, a volunteer group working to implement aspects
of the Ajo Comprehensive Plan completed last year, received a grant
Neighborhoods to hold a community forum in April.
The Ajo office of the Pima County Public Health Department
has added new services including making travel vaccinations available
for international travelers.
The Cabeza Prieta Natural History Association continued
its winter lecture series and Childs Mountain tours.
State Senator Elaine Richardson announced her candidacy
for the newly created 7th Congressional District for the US House of
The Phoenix bus route under contract with Ajo Stage Line
was threatened due to lack of funding. Pima County stepped in and
the service on a one-trip-a-day basis through April. The service was
supported by Pima County until May. Alternate sources for funding have
yet to be identified.
Don Olsen and Dave Rollins of Olsens IGA Marketplace broke
ground for the new IGA at McMahon Road and Hwy 85. Completion was
anticipated about October 1, but no construction had begun by the end
of the year.
A group of volunteers from Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife
Refuge, Cabeza Prieta Natural History Association, and International
Sonoran Desert Alliance worked to eliminate the invasive plant known as
from the road to Childs Mountain.
It snowed! Close to two inches of snow fell on Ajo on
Wednesday, January 30. It was the most snow since about 1968, according
A phone call from an alert resident to Pima County
Sheriff's Department on January 28 resulted in the arrest of at least
two men and
recovery of 357 pounds of marijuana hidden in a culvert behind the
The Old Time Fiddlers Contest brought more than 100
fiddlers, and even more listeners, to the Mocambo Ballroom. Fiddlers
could be heard for days practicing, jamming, playing for dancers, and
The monthly meeting of the Western Pima County Community
Council had speakers from the State Preservation Office. They talked
about the newly designated historic district and benefits available to
owners of property in the district.
The annual Vaudeville Show put on by the Ajo Community
Players and other talented people in the community played to a full
An automatic blood pressure machine was purchased with
funds donated by Ajo residents to Desert Senita Community Health Center.
Money for the Bob Poole Scholarship Fund was raised at a
recital by several students and school staff members at Dicus
The Sonoran Shindig, a nature-related event, was attended
by a crowd of several hundred. The winners of photography and poster
contests were announced. A Coyote Howling Contest, free entertainment,
and lots of activities kept folks busy throughout the day.
The community was invited to participate in the selection
of a new superintendent for the Ajo Unified School District. The
committee was made up of three community members, two certified staff
one classified staff member, and the school financial director.
The Ajo School Arts Partnership received a grant to
conduct activities pairing students and local artists throughout the
school year. Performing and cultural arts were included in the program.
The Lady Elks and the Piecemakers donated the proceeds of
fundraisers to the Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department.
Eighth grader Ashley Maya won the Spelling Bee and Elinor
Campion was the runner-up. The event was revived this year; the last
was held in 1993.
Dr. Seuss' birthday celebration included prominent
residents reading to kids and telling stories. PYP held its meal and
with games and prizes, and free books from the Reading Is Fundamental
program. The next day kids celebrated Read Across America day with
reading and cupcakes.
Parents Anonymous held workshops to teach participants how
to deal with anger. The free workshops were held in addition to their
regular Friday sessions for parents.
Parts of the Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge and
Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument were closed to public access from
through July 15. The closing was court-ordered in response to a
of Wildlife lawsuit citing the need to protect endangered pronghorn
birthing season when they are particularly vulnerable to disturbances.
Desert Senita Community Health Center added three new
board members raising the total to fifteen. The new board members were
Sarah Haas, Stella Capoccia, and Sonja Wade.
The health center received a rural health grant to focus
on diabetes in the community. The program will provide $200,000 each
year for the next three years to help those with diabetes recognize the
disease and learn to deal with it.
The high school drama club presented The King & I with
students joined by teachers and other community members in forming the
cast and crew.
The Ajo Community Players presented a melodrama that
delighted their audience.
The Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department began its annual
fund drive. The firefighters needed to raise money not only for
expenses but also for a new fire truck.
AIMS test scores were low for many students throughout the
state. Arizona's Instrument to Measure Standards is a controversial
testing tool. Passage of the test may be required for graduation from
Arizona schools in the near future. Ajo's administrators and staff said
they continue to work
to meet the standards and help kids succeed in school.
The 12th annual O'odham Traditions Day at Organ Pipe
Cactus National Monument featured demonstrations, games, talks, and
hands-on activities as part of the day-long program.
The Ajo Masons continued to reward fourth graders for
reading by giving away awards, prizes, and pizza.
Fourth graders participated in the Great American Backyard
Bird Count with assistance from the Cabeza Prieta Natural History
Minerals Research & Recovery's Ajo operation submitted
a permit proposal to Pima County Department of Environmental Quality.
permit appeared less restrictive than the previous one, it was because
the corrected status for the company from a primary source to one with
impact on the air quality. Several residents from the community spoke
the permit at the hearing on March 19, saying they were plagued by dust
that the permit neglected to address off-site particulates in the air.
changes were made to the permit as a result of the hearing.
Easter Sunday, now called Resurrection Sunday by some
churches, was celebrated with the traditional sunrise service in the
More than 300 people attended a community forum in the
Curley School. Most responded positively to a proposal to create a
complex combining low-cost housing and work space for artists with
space for retail businesses and community activities. Grant writing was
successful bringing in two large sums that are being used for
feasibility studies, architectural and financial planning, and surveys.
Several Ajo elementary students received awards for
posters entered in the Fair Housing Month poster contest. The poster of
the grand prize winner, first grader Cinnamon Robles, was exhibited
throughout southern Arizona.
About 100 people attended the Aloha Party sponsored by the
Ajo Council for the Fine Arts. Several Ajo men showed off their skills
as hula dancers.
US Customs agents confiscated more than four tons of
marijuana during an investigation at Menager's Dam. One smuggler was
shot and a US
Customs agent was injured during the incident.
Mike Hipp, Ajo's UPS guy for 25 years, was given a
surprise retirement party by the community.
Students First remodeling of the public school campus
began in April and continued throughout the summer and into the fall.
Rehabilitation of two injured birds culminated in their
release at Bud Walker Park and at a site on Well Road by Stella Capocci
with Cry in the Wilderness Rehabilitation Center. They have a 75%
of survival following rehabilitation and release in the Ajo area.
Golden Eagle Distributors provided a one-time award of
$500 to each of five Ajo organizations whose members spent a day
picking up trash along Highway 85 between Ajo and Why. A picnic lunch
prepared by Ajo Lions Club members for the volunteers followed the
Roger Di Rosa returned to Ajo as manager of Cabeza Prieta
National Wildlife Refuge. He worked for USFWS in Ajo from 1979 to 1985
spent the intervening years at refuges in the Caribbean and the Pacific.
Amy Alvillar, Judy Salcido, and Elinor Campion were
awarded scholarships to attend NAU's summer music camps by the Desert
and the Ajo Council for the Fine Arts. Megan Candelaria was selected to
attend a summer seminar on medical careers.
Pima County Department of Transportation continued to
support one trip a day by Ajo Stage Line from Ajo to Phoenix for two
months while alternative funding sources were sought. Since no funding
sources were identified, service was terminated.
The AHS golf team ended its season with a 5 and 10 record.
The softball team had a 9 and 3 record. The baseball team's record was
6. The boys' track team's record was 16 and 27; the girls' record was
The Cinco de Mayo fiesta offered fun, food, and
entertainment to an appreciative crowd.
Alma Montijo, Eduardo Padres, and Ashley Pearson, students
in the Ajo public school, and Jonnie Morgart from Ajo Calvary Baptist
Academy were among Arizona entrants who received awards for their
Junior Duck Stamp designs. All the Arizona entries were judged at the
Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge.
Ashley Pearson, Dominique Pacheco, and Kimberly Robles
received awards for their posters in the annual contest sponsored by
the Desert Music Club.
Dr. Robert Dooley was selected as the superintendent of
Ajo public schools. A former financial director for the Ajo public
School, he and his wife returned and bought a house in Ajo. He began
working July 1. Controversy surrounded an ad hoc committee formed to
help choose the new
school superintendent. Some members of the committee believed their
recommendation was ignored by the school board. The board said they
believe they selected the best person for the position.
Dooley replaced Marc Alop who retired at the end of the
2001-2002 school year. Alop had been with the district for seven years
principal, coach, and superintendent.
Mail carriers conducted their annual food collection and
gathered 1884 pounds of food for the Ajo Food Bank.
The Greenway house was included on the Arizona
Preservation Foundation's Most Endangered Property List for 2002. The
APF said that the buildings on the list were threatened most by
vandalism, neglect, and encroaching development.
Barbara Silva, Dan Morales and Cruzita Avalos retired from
the Ajo Unified School District. They provided a combined 82 years of
service to the district. Morales continued in his position as
for the 2002-2003 school year.
The Desert Senita Community Health Center continued its
efforts to start an assisted living center. Bids for materials and
services required for designing, fabricating, and erecting a modular
building and associated site work for the unit on the campus of the
health center were accepted
in May. The bid was awarded to ESB Modular Manufacturing of Marana.
the federal government releases the funds, construction will begin.
Graduating senior Ryan Orr signed a letter of intent to
play college football at Dakota State University in the fall.
The members of the Ajo High School Class of 2002 were
awarded diplomas Thursday evening, May 23. Ramona Michele Yanez was
valedictorian and Danita Lynn "Pita" Allen was salutatorian. Both young
women graduated with distinction, as did Kerry Lynn Williams.
Graduating with honors were Ryan Michael Orr, Samantha Marie Roland,
and Erica Barragan. Other class
members were Jesse Dean Adams, Stacy Bryant, Jose Eli Campa, Jason
Manuel, Julia Araceli Moreno, Ashley Danielle Paul, Cesar Renteria,
Robles, Maria Teresa Rivas, Danielle Kristine Trebes, Christina
and foreign exchange students Nicolas Gomez Haensel and Martina
Rob Petersen of the AHS Class of '73 was the guest speaker
The Ajo High School stadium was dedicated as part of the
graduation ceremonies. Jack Petersen Stadium was named in honor of the
former teacher, coach, principal, and superintendent of Ajo schools.
Graduating seniors and underclassmen celebrated by
attending Pima Youth Partnership's Grad Night Party from the time the
ceremony ended until breakfast at 5 a.m.
Katherine Walters took the responsibility of the Ajo
Community Swimming Pool for the summer. She was a lifeguard in past
years and took
over for Margot Bissell who had more time to spend with her family this
Leslie Segura represented Ajo when she participated in a
national volleyball tournament in Hawaii.
Drug seizures and deaths due to exposure to the extreme
heat were near-daily occurrences dealt with by US Border Patrol and
other border law enforcement agencies. Desert deaths had reached 20 by
A modular unit purchased by Desert Senita Community Health
Center was relocated to Lukeville for clinics for those who cannot
travel to Ajo for care. Permits must be obtained and regulations dealt
with before the facility can begin operations.
Fatima McCasland began working as Outreach Coordinator for
a diabetes outreach program at the Desert Senita Community Health
by a rural health grant for education of diabetics with the assistance
aides called promotores. More than 100 people were signed up for the
first series of classes and are awaiting the hiring of a nurse
instructor by Pima County, a partner in the project.
Ajo Calvary Christian Academy concluded its first year of
educating young people. One eighth-grade student finished the program
the school said it would add ninth grade so he could continue his
The US Post Office raised its rates for first class mail
at the end of June. The Ajo post office lobby hours changed, too, with
a reduction of hours due to budget restrictions. Declining mail volume
and revenue were cited as the reasons for the changes.
Long-time resident Chuck Rasmussen and his dog died in the
desert after his car apparently became stuck in the sand.
The Fourth of July celebration included a parade,
festivities in the Plaza, and swimming in the afternoon for the kids,
but no fireworks. All area fireworks were cancelled due to high fire
danger throughout Arizona.
The Ajo Copper News newsstand rates increased from
to 35¢ per issue. Subscription rates increased as well.
US Border Patrol personnel, including BORSTAR agents
trained in emergency medical services, were joined by a controversial
Patrol made up of volunteers from metropolitan areas to search for
in the desert.
People arrested on weekends and holidays now must wait for
a corrections officer to drive them to Tucson to appear before a
magistrate there rather than being seen by Carlton Oglesby acting as a
justice of the peace. All temporary justices of the peace must be
according to a new court order that forced Oglesby to vacate the post.
need to transport prisoners to Tucson for arraignment was said to be a
solution while problems with a video link are ironed out.
Pima Youth Partnership conducted a Life Choices and
Challenges workshop as part of its summer day camp for kids.
About 400,000 Pima County voters received new voter
registration cards in the mail reflecting federal, state, and precinct
Karen Galliazzo was named the new coordinator of the Ajo
Plans for school improvement were made by members of the
School Improvement Team consisting of teachers, parents, and
administrators. The plan includes professional development, making use
of outside facilitators, and tying state standards into every lesson.
The focus on academics may
involve additional effort on the part of the staff, students, and
but elimination of the designation "school in need of improvement" is
goal, team members said. The plan was instituted when school opened.
Funding was awarded to Desert Senita Community Health
Center to provide oral health services including primary prevention,
restorative services, emergency services, rehabilitative services, and
specialty services. A dental facility with equipment has been
as well as a lot to put it on.
The Desert Sharks swim team placed fourth out of eight
teams in the championship meet on July 20 at Flowing Wells in Tucson.
Kandice Duvall began working as Ajo's public health nurse.
She and her husband had been winter visitors for several years prior to
relocating here permanently earlier this year.
A Tucson group to recall Pima County Supervisor for
District 3 Sharon Bronson was formed. The group was unsuccessful in
required number of signatures.
Kris Eggle, a National Park Service law enforcement
ranger, was killed at Organ Pipe Cactus National Monument while
US Border Patrol agents to intercept a vehicle illegally crossing the
border. One of two Mexicans who were being pursued by Mexican officers
killed at the scene. The motorcade in honor of the fallen ranger
of more than 100 vehicles and a helicopter. About 600 people attended a
funeral service at Ajo Calvary Baptist Church where Eggle was a member.
He was buried in Michigan.
Gibson Park was renamed in honor of Forrest "Rick"
Rickard, a former resident who was influential in establishing parks
and preserving history for future generations.
The Students First renovation construction remained
incomplete but school started on schedule. Five new teachers were on
Kment teaching sixth grade, Vally Maddala teaching physics, chemistry,
biology, and physical science, Ilsa Castillo teaching math and Spanish,
Susan Spitzer teaching music, and Katie Walters teaching fifth grade.
Community Development Block Grants were awarded. A grant
of $100,000 for development and preservation of the Curley School went
to the Curley School Project. Another $100,000 was awarded to AGVFD
purchase of a new fire truck. Both were supported and encouraged by
supervisor Sharon Bronson. AGVFD later received another grant for the
purchase price of a fire truck, so they did not accept the CDBG funds.
Desert Dialysis met in Ajo and expressed an interest in
providing dialysis services. Their subsequent search for nursing staff
and other employees identified no potential employees so the project
The Primary election, September 10, gave voters the
opportunity to decide which candidate would represent each party in the
The campaign of Elaine Richardson brought a crew from
KGUN-TV 9 to Ajo to do a story on Desert Senita Community Health Center.
Marty Branson took over as chairman of the Ajo Lukeville
Health Service District board of directors while Kate Garmise became
chairman of the Desert Senita Community Health Center board.
A survey conducted by the Ajo District of the Pima County
Sheriff's Department showed that most of Ajo's citizens were satisfied
the services of its deputies. When asked what they thought were the
problems, they said motorist driving behavior on Hwy 85 and in
areas including erratic, reckless, and unlawful driving, speeding, and
while under the influence of alcohol. The second biggest problem, they
was drug smuggling. The increasing numbers of undocumented aliens
in the area was third. That was a change from the results of a similar
done in 2000 when the biggest concern was smuggling, second was
with undocumented aliens remaining at third.
Winning entries in the Ajo Copper News "You Know It's Hot
in Ajo When..." contest were announced. Michelle Pacheco took first
with "You know it's hot when you throw a block of ice in your swamp
to cool your house off (and think it's just like air conditioning)."
place went to Robert Maxfield for "You know it's hot when you go to
mailbox and get your mail and take your frozen food out and put inside
thaw and cook for dinner!" The other second place was Gil Campos for
know it's hot when your dog starts growing camel humps."
Ajo Calvary Christian Academy began its second school year
on September 3. The private school has a Christian-based curriculum for
pre-school through ninth grade students.
Several ceremonies honoring the victims of the September
11, 2001, terrorist attacks took place in Ajo including a service in
Ajo Calvary Baptist Church, a memorial in the Ajo Cemetery conducted by
the VFW and
its Ladies Auxiliary, and a candlelight vigil in the Plaza.
A man calling himself Dwayne Thompson was taken into
custody by deputies. The Arizona Republic had published his picture,
him as William Novick, a fugitive suspected of being a serial child
molester. As soon as Ajo residents saw the picture, they began calling
the Pima County Sheriff's Department in Ajo to identify an elderly man
who was a frequent visitor at the Ajo CofC office and the public
library, and a bagger at Olsens Marketplace. Arrested on charges of
child molestation in Arizona, Wisconsin, and Texas, he was taken to a
Maricopa County jail by the US Marshal's Office before being moved to a
A Native American reunion was held near the Ajo Historical
Museum. Many current and former Ajo residents enjoyed getting together
for food, festivities, and visits with their friends.
The Arizona Fire Training Association named Sonja Wade
Fire Trainer/Instructor of the Year. Wade is a firefighter for the Why
Fire Department and organized an interagency training program in
Western Pima County. She owns First Link, headquartered in Ajo.
About 50 people attended a school board candidate forum
held by the Ajo School Parent Teacher Organization. The eight
candidates -- Fred Fout, Lisa Lopez, Andrea Mulcahy, Lisa Rossi,
Ken Kermode, Malin Lewis, Jerry Scott, and Karen Fry -- for three
vacancies on the school board were introduced and then answered
questions submitted by members of the audience. Keith Stone was the
Candidates for all offices were invited to a WPCCC
meeting. Candidate for US Representative for District 7 Ross Hieb,
Arizona representatives for District 25 Jennifer Burns and David
and a representative from candidate for governor Matt Salmon attended
with local school board candidates Ken Kermode and Lisa Rossi.
The Ajo elementary school, kindergarten through eighth
grade, received a rating of "maintaining adequate performance" by the
Arizona Department of Education, which evaluated all the schools in the
state and gave each
an achievement placement rating. The high school rating, based on
from the AIMS test, was "underperforming." A School Improvement Plan
already been approved by the state and is being implemented. The high
was given a rating of "above average" for having a low dropout
With the addition of three new deputies, the Ajo District
of the Pima County Sheriff's Department was at full staff for about a
month. Lt. David Allen said he had hoped to maintain a full staff
longer than that but people keep moving on. He said he would continue
to advocate for a full staff of deputies for the Ajo District.
Among the many activities at the Salazar-Ajo Branch
Library were a lecture by author Patricia Preciado Martin and, as part
of One Book, One Community, a discussion of Bless Me Ultima.
The Arizona Game & Fish Department responded to
reports of danger from coyotes entering neighborhoods. Agents relocated
or killed coyotes, especially in the Why area where a coyote reportedly
bit a youngster.
The Lyons Hotel ruins were removed from property on
Estrella following its purchase by the Desert Senita Community Health
Center. While it was located within the historic district, it had not
as a historic building and serious deterioration made it a hazard that
The Ajo Red Raider volleyball team ended its season with a
17 and 7 record. The football team ended its season with a 5 and 3
Progress continues on the Head Start Early Childhood
Learning program. Organizers of the program, which will initially be
geared to four-year-old children whose families are at or below the
federal poverty level, are hoping to have a building in place on the
school campus and two teachers hired
so classes can begin in January.
Some area residents were briefly stranded when fishermen
in Puerto Peñasco, Sonora, Mexico, formed a barrier across the
highway connecting Rocky Point with Lukeville. The fishermen were angry
over a new Mexican law that prohibits trawling for shrimp in a marine
reserve in the Upper Gulf of California created to protect endangered
species. Fishermen said the enforcement of the law was hurting them
Fifteen propositions, state candidates, and local
candidates were on the general election ballot on Tuesday, November 5.
On the state
level, District #25, which includes most of Western Pima County, will
represented by Manny Alvarez and Jennifer Burns in the Arizona House of
Representatives, and by Marsha Arzberger in the Arizona Senate. In
#7, Senator Raul Grijalva will represent Western Pima County. Locally,
Ajo-Lukeville Health Service District filled one of two positions when
Feidt ran unopposed. Because her candidate forms were received late,
Gonzales' name was not on the ballot, but she was notified by the board
elections that she was elected. The ALHSD board will decide whether she
been elected or appoint her to the second position at its January
Three positions on the Ajo Unified School District board were filled by
re-election of Lisa Rossi and Malin Lewis and new member Ken Kermode.
unopposed for two positions on the Why Fire District board were Norm
and Jesse Denning. Also re-elected were Justice of the Peace John Casey
Constable Bob Harral.
Desert Senita Community Health Center reorganized its
management. Former consultant Ed Sicurello began his new position as
executive director on December 1. His former partner, Marty Schaller,
continued as consultant, and Bertha Hickman, who was executive
director, stepped aside and is now
director of operations for the health center.
Vandalism at Minerals Research & Recovery in early
November destroyed equipment and ruined products. The company offered a
reward for information about the incident.
A fashion show was held to raise money for the Desert
Senita Community Health Center. About 100 attendees were rewarded with
fashions, fun, and prizes.
Birds on Bikes, motorcycle riders with turkeys to donate,
filled the Ajo Food Bank's freezer with 20 birds for Thanksgiving
for those in need.
A draft of an Environmental Impact Statement for
Immigrations & Naturalization Service and US Border Patrol was
available for comments.
The newly formed Ajo Garden Club held a community clean-up
and made plans for other activities to beautify Ajo.
The Lions Club annual turkey shoot brought residents out
to try for top scores.
Several area veterans received military medals years after
their service was finished. Some of the men were from Sells. Those from
Ajo were Leonard Garcia (postumously), Angelo Mattia, and Alex
A Citizens Corps Council was formed in Western Pima County
under the leadership of Lt. David Allen of the Pima County Sheriff's
Department. The Citizen Corps is a component of the USA Freedom Corps.
Organizing volunteers and devising ways to be better prepared for
disasters and other emergencies are the priorities, said Allen.
The Stockmen's Bank and Ajo District Chamber of Commerce
closed Lomita Avenue for the first annual Ajo Copper Days & Great
Western Street Fair on Saturday, November 23. Everything from blood
pressure checks, contests, and flowers to jewelry, raffle tickets, and
Kachina dolls were there. A
dinner and dance followed that evening.
Pollinator gardens have been planted along a corridor from
Gila Bend to Puerto Peñasco. Ajo students participated with help
from Pima Youth Partnership and the International Sonoran Desert
Alliance. It is
part of a project to monitor migratory pollinators such as
and other pollinating insects, and provide food for caterpillars.
Students at the San Simon School took part in a science
fair. Maria Lopez, Leboria Lopez and Monique Victor were the Judges'
Choice winners in the grade 2-4 division, Diana Lopez, Sarah Cruz, and
Melody Monte in
the grades 5-8 division, and Lisa Lopez in the grades 9-12 division.
of Show winners were Jericho Parra in the grades K-1 division, Cody
in the grades 2 – 4 division, Breeanna Miranda, Alvaleah Ortega, and
Juan in the grades 5-8 division, and Robin Santos in the grades 9-12.
Public comment was encouraged on a proposal to evaluate
the environmental impacts of constructing a vehicle barrier that would
the length of the international border in two national parks – Organ
Cactus and Coronado. The purpose of the barriers is to reduce risks to
security and to public and worker health and safety, and to protect the
in the two park units. Organ Pipe superintendent Bill Wellman said the
barriers would deter dangerous vehicular traffic but are not expected
to reduce foot traffic.
The school board changed its meeting night to the second
Thursday of each month. Changes may be made due to sports or other
schedule conflicts. The new policy will begin with the January meeting.
One steam generator headed for the Palo Verde Power Plant
near Buckeye made its journey from Puerto Peñasco along Hwy 85
far as Gila Bend. It remained there through the end of the year. The
is still parked in Lukeville and should be moved along Hwy 85 sometime
the future. The trek from Peñasco to the power plant was
scheduled to take place in October.
The Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department indicated that
bidding was in progress for the new fire truck and, once the contract
was awarded, the vendor would provide an estimate for the completion
Donations are being taken for the Ajo High Athletic Banner
Fund. The school hopes to place championship banners in the high school
The resignations of physician assistant Newell Belnap and
of board member Esperanza Workman were accepted with regret by the
of Desert Senita Community Health Center. The departure of Belnap
questions that the board attempted to answer.
Representatives from the Bureau of Land Management
explained the procedure for developing a long-term management plan.
They said they
will be conducting public meetings beginning in the spring for the plan
will guide BLM management activities for the next 15 to 20 years. A
process is being conducted at Cabeza Prieta National Wildlife Refuge.
The Ajo/Gibson Volunteer Fire Department personnel said
they will be conducting assessments of buildings to help them determine
how to handle a scene prior to an emergency.
The Ajo School Arts Partnership finished a six-week
session and will begin a new session in January with artists giving
students experience with various art forms and media.
The holidays were heralded by two concerts by the
community choir, with a prelude by the community band, in Ajo Federated
Church. Both groups were directed by Susan Spitzer. Pageants and other
celebrations also added to the festive season.
As usual, Santa's first stop on Christmas Eve was the
Plaza where a huge crowd welcomed him. A Christmas concert followed at
Federated Church. Throughout the season, residents enjoyed parties and
around town to check out the holiday light displays.
On Christmas Day, many people headed to church to
celebrate the birth of Christ.
Happy New Year!
In the 2002 issues of the Ajo Copper News, we
printed birth announcements, welcoming to our world: