Thu, Jan. 23

What's Happening: August 23, 2017

Camp Verde Parks and Rec: Grasshopper Basketball registration open

Camp Verde Parks and Rec: Grasshopper Basketball registration open

Grasshopper Basketball registration open

Camp Verde Parks and Recreation announces that registration is open for another season of its highly popular youth Grasshopper Basketball Program. This program for boys and girls in 1st thru 4th grade is a fun way to learn basketball and teamwork. Co-ed teams of boys and girls, led by volunteer coaches, are grouped by grade level and practice one night per week and compete on Saturday mornings. The league is intended to allow kids to have fun, learn the fundamentals of basketball and develop teamwork. Lower baskets are used as well as smaller sized basketballs to make the game more enjoyable and successful for the kids. Last year over 100 kids had a great time playing basketball – you could be next!

Volunteer coaches are always needed for these teams. Coaching experience is not required, only the desire to help your kids and others have a good time. Without enough coaches this program is not possible. Parents interested in coaching should sign their kids up early and check the coaching box on the form.

Registration is only $40 per child and $35 for each additional child from the same family and includes a uniform jersey. Scholarships may be available to help those in need courtesy of the Kiwanis Club of Camp Verde. Sign up is due by September 30th and teams will be assigned by Parks & Recreation. Sign-up forms will be available at the schools or the Parks & Recreation office at 395 S. Main Street. Games are scheduled to start Saturday, October 21st and finish in early December.

For more information or to register come to Parks & Recreation at 395 S. Main St. or call (928)554-0829.

Open Mic night Monday at Thanks a Latte!

Are you a musician, singer, poet, comedian, or performer?

Then come on over to Thanks a Latte this Monday, September 4 for Open Mic Night!

Open Mic is the perfect way to finish off your three day Labor Day weekend with just one more evening of fun! This one will be an evening of good music, wonderful atmosphere, great food and coffee.

Highly respected local musician, singer, and composer, Gary Simpkins, hosts this Monday night tradition at the coolest coffee shop in the Verde Valley.

The Monday Open Mic Night dates back to 2011 and is being continued by the café’s new owners, the Olinicks.

At 5 PM, Simpkins -- who is a very experienced sound engineer -- sets up his excellent sound equipment which assures you of a great musical experience. It’s because of the quality of his sound system and the fantastic performer-audience camaraderie which draws the very best musicians to Thanks a Latte’s Monday Open Mic.

Want to perform? Great! Arrive at 5 p.m. this Monday to sign up.

Just want to listen? Perfect! Performers are on stage from 5:30-8:30 p.m.. Join your fellow attentive listeners and have a wonderful evening!

Simpkins starts off the night at 5:30. Then the performers take the stage. Designed as a showcase for local musicians, Open Mic allows them to debut new music or new arrangements of old favorite songs. Performers include experienced professional musicians as well as talented, new, rising performers.

If You Go:

• When: Monday, September 4, 5:30-8:30 p.m.

• What: Open Mic Night with Gary Simpkins

• Where: Thanks a Latte, 348 South Main St., Camp Verde

Talk politics - but how?

Do you find it hard to speak to family, friends and colleagues with opposing political viewpoints? Would you like to learn some approaches to try? According to Barbara Litrell, President of the League of Women Voters Greater Verde Valley, “We must continue to speak to one another to ensure our democracy functions. Democracy is built on productive discussions and consensus building around important issues affecting our society.” 

The League has invited Corey Harris to be the guest speaker and facilitator at “Let’s Talk Politics” a League event on Thursday, August 24, 8:30AM-10AM at the Sedona Community Center, 2615 Melody Lane, Sedona. The program is free and open to the public. 

Corey Harris enlisted in the Army and served two combat tours in Iraq. He served as both a sergeant and an officer mentoring city and state councils on effective governance for which he was awarded the Bronze Star. His life has been spent on community relations and bringing sides together to talk about important issues in order to solve problems. He is currently the VP of the Arizona Veterans and Military Leadership Alliance where he collaborated with ASU to develop ASU into the 6th most veteran supportive campus in the nation. Corey makes things happen by bringing people with opposing viewpoints together. Corey will share ways to do this. For more information, contact Barbara Litrell 659-0135 or

Birding 101 at Camp Verde Community Library

A Birding 101 class will take place Saturday, September 23, 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., and Sunday, September 24, 8 a.m. to noon at the Camp Verde Community Library, 130 Black Bridge Road.

Birdwatching is fast becoming one of the most popular outdoor recreations in the United States. Ask any birder, they will be able to tell you why! It is the enjoyment of being outdoors, the confidence gained from reconnecting with the natural world, and the excitement of that unexpected flash of color in the trees and being able to identify it! Friends of Verde River Greenway, Jays’ Bird Barn of Sedona and Norther Arizona Audubon are please to Birding 101 to the community. This is a great workshop for the novice or the experienced birder.

Dena Greenwood, biologist and bird guide for over 30 years, is offering a Birding 101 workshop Sept 23 & 24.  She will introduce you to the art of birding. Saturday’s class, going from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., will be a classroom experience covering bird anatomy, flight, migration, breeding behavior, song and habitat. This class will be held at the Camp Verde Community Library. The second day, Sunday, will be held outside. Participants will meet at Rezzonico Family Park near the library along Beaver Creek from 8 a.m. to noon.

Cost is $50 per person for the weekend.

For registration visit

For further information contact Laura Jones at (928) 451-6860.

Alzheimer’s Association to meet Sept. 6

According to the Alzheimer’s Association, one in eight older Americans suffers from Alzheimer’s disease. It is the sixth leading cause of death in the U.S. and the only cause of death among the top 10 in the nation that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed. As the disease becomes more prevalent as people live longer, their caregivers often find themselves in need of support and resources. The free support group program addresses such issues. These meetings for caregivers of Alzheimer’s patients are held the first Wednesday of each month from 10 to 11 a.m. (please arrive by 9:45 a.m.) The next meeting will be held on Wednesday, September 6, 2017.

The group meets at Verde Valley Medical Center in Cottonwood, Meeting Room A. Enter the hospital at the Outpatient Services Entrance. The organizers are excited to host this support group at VVMC as it is a more central location. And, experts from the hospital will be asked to speak periodically. This support group is open to everyone, and we are extending an invitation especially to people who have not been able to attend before. Vast amounts of information is available, so if you have ANY interest in memory disorders, please come check us out. Bonnie Shimko from AZ Care Management Solutions is an official facilitator and will be making as many meetings as she can. For information, call Bonnie at (928) 300-0172 or Barbara at (928) 634-2638 or Fran at (928) 301-3852.

Yavapai College Sedona Center Reopening, Tour on Sept. 12

Members of the public are invited to attend the reopening ceremony of Yavapai College’s Sedona Center (4215 Arts Village Drive, Sedona) following major renovations to upgrade the facility for the re-launch of the school’s Culinary Arts program on Tuesday, Sept. 12 at 3:45 p.m.

Verde Valley Campus Executive Dean Dr. James Perey will make opening remarks, after which he will introduce special guest speakers, including Yavapai College District Governing Board member Dr. Connie Harris, Sedona Mayor Sandy Moriarty, and Yavapai College President Dr. Penny Wills, who will all speak about the occasion.

A tour of the Sedona Center will follow, with a ribbon cutting ceremony and refreshments.

The work to refurbish the Sedona Center over the summer resulted in adding two new teaching kitchens. “These kitchens are specialized—there is the baking and pastry side, and the savory side,” said Yavapai College Verde Valley Campus Associate Dean Dr. Barbara Waak. “The baking and pastry kitchen has very specific equipment, such as a proofing cabinet for breads and a steam oven for foods such as croissants.”

The savory kitchen has eight large working stations with ovens, ranges, fryers, grills, and many reach-in freezers and refrigerators. The kitchen also includes three walk-in coolers.

“With the state of the art equipment, we will provide students with the knowledge, confidence and hands-on experience necessary to immediately contribute at any restaurant, hotel, or resort,” said chef and Yavapai College instructor Jen Jackson.

Jackson is a Culinary Institute of America Certified Professional Chef, and had a cooking studio and taught over 200 classes to the Sedona community. Joining her are chef Darryl Tingler, who has 30 years of experience in the food industry and is chef and owner of a 40-seat Prescott restaurant; and chef Kat Biermann, owner of Verbena Pastries and a chef at the Tourist Home Restaurant in Flagstaff.

In addition to the culinary arts, the Sedona Center will be the seat of the Hospitality program. Charlie Mormino (a professional hospitality recruiter and trainer) and Tonya Nolan (Yavapai College business management instructor and Assistant Manager at Adobe Grand Villas in Sedona) will be instructing courses including Property Management, Foods Systems Management, Financial Management, and Front Office Procedures.

Suicide trends explored by Mental Health Coalition Verde Valley

“Suicide Trends in Coconino County” is the subject of the August 28 Mental Health Monday program presented by the Mental Health Coalition Verde Valley. There are three parts to Mental Health Monday programs.  

From 9:30-11:00AM, Yasmine Sealy, Investigations Supervisor for the Coconino County Medical Examiner’s Office will do the presentation on suicide trends in Coconino County at Yavapai College, 4215 Arts Village Dr., Sedona. The meeting is free, open to the public and a partnership with OLLI. 

According to Barbara Litrell, President of the Coalition, “September is Suicide Awareness Month and this presentation at the end of August helps us understand the issues related to suicide in our area and the state and the extent of the problem so we can follow up with additional programs in September.”

Following the presentation, the Coalition will hold its business meeting from 11AM-Noon. The public is invited to stay and learn about and perhaps volunteer to work on Coalition programs related to community education, youth outreach, trauma, PTSD, criminal justice and law enforcement, suicide, Alzheimer’s support, and legislative advocacy.

In the evening at 7PM, the film “Crazywise” will be shown at Mary D. Fisher Theatre, 2030 West SR 89A in Sedona. The documentary explores the traditional wisdom of indigenous cultures which often contradicts modern views about a mental health crisis. Is it a “calling” to grow or just a “broken brain”? The film shows what can be learned from people around the world who have turned their psychological crisis into a positive transformative experience. 

“Emerging Proud” short will screen prior to “Crazywise”. 

Phil Borges with “Crazywise” and Katie Mottram with “Emerging Proud” will join the community conversation after the film via SKYPE. Tickets for the film are available at the box office or online at For information contact Barbara Litrell 649-0135 or 

World Cup of Joe Coffee Tasting at Thanks a Latte on Aug. 26

You have the amazing opportunity to sample six to eight world cups of coffee on August 26 at Thanks a Latte and learn what makes each cup truly unique.

Owner Darryl Olinick, a graduate of the Ivy League Barista Academy in California, will share his encyclopedic knowledge of coffee -- how coffee is raised in different parts of the world and which flavors are infused into which coffees. Do you want a coffee with a hint of strawberries? Try the Ethiopian coffee. Is chocolate more your style? Try the Colombian! Here’s a piece of coffee trivia: it’s the microclimates and the small, family farms on Kona that make Kona coffee one of the best in the world! Come find out why as Darryl imparts his knowledge at this World Cup of Joe Coffee Tasting.

Darryl Olinick buys his beans from the finest growers in Ethiopia, Panama, Mexico, Colombia, Kona, and many other nations. In Camp Verde, he roasts his coffee beans on site, giving you the freshest cup of coffee in the Verde Valley!

If You Go:

When: Saturday, August 26, 2-5 p.m.

What: Coffee Tasting

Where: Thanks a Latte, 348 South Main St. Camp Verde,

How much: $5 for 6-8 samples (includes cranberry scones)

Managing photos on a Mac

All those photos can be overwhelming:  finding, posting or pinning, and emailing them. 

The basics of how to do this on a Mac will be covered at the computer club’s 4th Friday Apple/Mac Group workshop on August 25 at 5pm.  Speaker is Alex Reed of the “Certified Computer Guys”, who describes his family as “the original computer nerds”.  Alex is CompTIA certified and says his favorite computer is his Macbook Pro.   Here is an opportunity to learn from the tech-savvy younger generation.   VVCC meetings are in Cottonwood at the Clemenceau building on the north side of the roundabout at Mingus and Willalrd.  See the Verde Valley Computer Club on Facebook or at or call 928-634-7889 for more info.

Operation Christmas Child information meeting

Operation Christmas Child is a non-profit organization that provides shoe boxes filled with gifts to needy children around the world. Often, these gifts are the only new things that child has received in their lifetime. To learn more about Operation Christmas Child come to the Cottonwood Public Library on Saturday, August 26 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. in Library Meeting Room B. The library is located at 100 S 6th St in Cottonwood.

Cottonwood Bahá’í community Course in Life and Faith

The Cottonwood Bahá’í community will host a Course in Life and Faith to be held at the Cottonwood Public Library free to the public.

This course will explore the existence of God, the need for religion, the oneness of Mankind, equality of the sexes, economic stability through spiritual solutions and many more topics.

If you are wondering about the path our world is taking, the causes of political strife and economic instability, this course may be for you.

The eighth class will be held on Saturday, August 26, 2017 at the Cottonwood Public Library from 12:30pm-1:30pm and will be titled: Progressive Revelation, Part 1.

The Baha’i Faith teaches “the well-being of mankind, its peace and security, are unattainable unless and until its unity is firmly established.” Baha’u’llah

Sponsored by the Cottonwood Bahá’í community. 

No fee, no homework, all are welcome. 

For further information, please call (928) 649-5845 or (928) 274-6289.

Verde Valley community invited to good causes potluck

The public is invited to attend the next Good Food for Good Causes Potluck of 2017 on Thursday, Sept. 14, at St Thomas Episcopal Church Parish Hall located at 889 First South Street in Clarkdale across from the post office from 5:30-8:30 pm.  The group is an adult giving circle which meets bi-annually. Each attendee brings potluck food and also a check (or cash) for $35 which is collectively donated to help fund good causes in the greater Verde Valley area. The dinner will benefit Cottonwood Middle School and Principal Matt Schumacher will attend to speak about how the funds will be used on student elective programs.

St Thomas Episcopal Church provides the local kitchen/dining venue and their existing 501c3 for responsible forwarding of all funds collected to the good cause of the evening.  For more information, call 928-592-2588 or email

Mental health first aid training call to local authors

The Cottonwood Public Library is looking for local published authors to participate in the 2017 Cottonwood Book Fair. The event will be held on Saturday, October 28th from 9 a.m. to noon. during the Fall Festival at the Verde Valley Fairgrounds in Cottonwood. The Book Fair will bring together 35 local authors who will be selling and signing their books. Please contact Kyle Smith at 928-340-2782 or to register. There is a $25 registration fee and table reservations will not be confirmed until payment is received. The first thirty-five authors to respond will be registered. The deadline to register is Friday, September 15th.

What do you when a loved one, a neighbor or an employee is experiencing a mental health crisis or an emotional meltdown? It’s a difficult situation to be in when you are not sure what is the right thing to do. Mental Health First Aid training can help. 

An 8 hour Mental Health First Aid training class is scheduled for Friday, September 15, 8AM-5PM at the Camp Verde Community Library, 130 Black Bridge Rd, Camp Verde. The program is offered by The Mental Health Coalition Verde Valley  and Spectrum Healthcare Group. The 8-hour training is free, open to the public, and each person receives a certificate of completion. Continuing education credit may be available to those attending the 8-hour session.

Professional instructors from Spectrum Healthcare Group teach the course, which includes lecture, videos, group activities and reference materials. The course covers first aid for developing mental health problems including depression, anxiety disorders, psychosis, and substance use disorders. The course focuses on recognizing the signs of addiction and mental illness and  the 5 step action plan to assess a situation and offer assistance. The course also teaches about local resources and where to turn for help.  Spectrum Healthcare Group has trained over 700 community members in Mental Health First Aid. 

According to Barbara Litrell,  President of the Coalition, “ We offer this training every two months so more and more of our community members are equipped to help someone who is having a mental health crisis. It’s a lot like CPR for mental illness. If someone is having a heart attack and you are trained in CPR, you would know what to do and how to help. That’s what Mental Health First Aid teaches you. We’re thrilled that the beautiful new Camp Verde Library is hosting this class.” 

The Mental Health Coalition Verde Valley is a 501C3 non-profit volunteer organization dedicated to building community support for families and individuals living with mental illness through education, advocacy, and community support services. Bring your lunch. Beverages and snacks will be provided.   Class size is limited to 24.  Please register early by contacting Barbara Litrell 649-0135 or 

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