Desert Digests

Cave Creek’s public libraries offer an oasis of events year-round By Lauren Wise   As fortresses of history, knowledge and escapes to worlds beyond imagination, libraries have been sanctuaries for both the written word and people for hundreds of years. A library is the heart of a community, often run by volunteers, frequented by people looking to enrich their lives. Or maybe they’re just looking for so ...

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Oh, My Gourd!

Ray Villafane’s pumpkin art is the centerpiece of Halloween By Lynette Carrington   Fall is the ideal time to get acquainted with Ray Villafane, a talented artist who has literally carved a niche of his own. It’s safe to say Villafane owns Halloween. The world-renowned talent will take center stage once again in the Enchanted Pumpkin Garden in Carefree from Friday, Oct. 19, to Sunday, Oct. 28. Hailing ...

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Art Breaking

Hidden in the Hills studio tour gives guests an in-depth look at local creatives By Sue Kern-Fleischer   Like a geode, the artistic gems of the North Valley are hidden inside. You have to crack the surface to see all the treasures. Luckily, art collectors and those seeking original holiday gifts can get inside the proverbial geode during the 22nd Annual Hidden in the Hills artist studio tour and sale, ...

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Like Winning the Lottery

Pitcher Danny Farquhar to discuss harrowing brain aneurysm   By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski   A year ago, Chicago White Sox pitcher Danny Farquhar didn’t have to worry about his three children climbing on him, or mishaps on the diamond. But on April 20, in a game against the Houston Astros, his life changed. Farquhar, 31, suffered a brain hemorrhage caused by a ruptured aneurysm. Farquhar collapsed ...

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Talk of the Town Hall

By Eric Newman   The Anthem Area Chamber of Commerce held a Legislative Town Hall on Aug. 14, featuring the Arizona State legislative candidates in District 1. Incumbent Karen Fann (R), along with Jo Craycraft (D), Noel Campbell (R), Jodi Rooney (R), Jan Manolis (D) and Dr. Ed Gogek (D) took questions from Anthem-area citizens and press concerning their viewpoints on noteworthy political issues in Ariz ...

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To the Letter

Bigfish Creative Group coins new ‘Five Cs of AZ’ By Alison Bailin Batz   Bigfish Creative Group coins new ‘Five Cs of AZ’ Exactly 100 years ago — in 1918 — there were 1.75 million cattle in Arizona. “There were nearly two million cows and only about 300,000 people,” says Joe Pizzimenti, owner of Bigfish Creative Group in the North Valley. “Similarly, thanks to irrigation that started here in the late 1 ...

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Daisy Chain

Flower Child opens fourth Arizona location at Desert Ridge By Madison Rutherford   Flower Child proves it’s the little things in life that mean anything. For the fast-casual health food chain, it’s things like serving seasonal lemonade out of mason jars and ensuring each table is adorned with fresh flowers or succulents. The restaurant is the newest addition to a fast-growing family of approachable, ch ...

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Something Special

Flo's Fetes 20 years of chinese food with new recipes By Catherine Hathaway   When a restaurant has been around for 20 years, you know there has to be a good story behind it. Flo's  is no exception. A Hong Kong native, Florence "Flo" Chan has been in the restaurant business since college. "I've always worked in a restaurant," Chan says. "I loved the restaurant business. Especially after I met Dustin an ...

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Meteor Moments

Look to the sky to see some memorable sights in August and September By Steve Kates   With summer well underway, breaks in the annual monsoon will reveal a host of amazing sky events. Get set for the annual Perseid meteor shower, which may be the best meteor shower of the entire year. This year promises to offer up a near moonless sky for this big event. Meteors from this shower start to appear in the ...

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Smash Factor

In part two of fundamentals far a better game, golf pro Scott Sackett explains why inconsistent contact across the club face translates into lost yards. By Scott Sackett In part two of this 10-part series on fundamentals for a better game, I discuss smash factor. It's important for golfers to understand what smash factor is, how it contributes to distance, and what you can focus on to increase yours. First, ...

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Pay Dirt

Ed Schieffelin finds his tombstone.   By Marshall Trimble The tall, lanky prospector brushed back his thick, matted, unkempt hair and looked out across a jumble of high mesa hills, scanning the rough terrain east of the San Pedro River. Somewhere out there he reckoned, lay the vast riches he had long sought. It was a well-known fact that this virtually uninhabited area, some 60 miles southeast of Tucso ...

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Beautifully Made

Clothing designer instills confidence and empowerment with her creations.  By Sondra Barr Photos by Chadwick Fowler   Growing up in Kazakhstan while it was still part of the Soviet Union, Lyudmila Aspeleider experienced the country collapsing around her. Food was scarce and new clothing was hard to come by, so her mother would painstakingly tear her own clothes apart and repurpose the fabric to make cl ...

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On Borrowed Time

Insurance battle continues for area firefighter   By Christina Fuoco-Karasinski   Austin Peck always wanted to be a firefighter. He was sociable as a student at Cave Creek's Cactus Shadows High School, about the same time his uncle, then a Glendale fire chief, introduced him to the occupation. "Not to boast, but I was really physical," says Peck, a Goodyear firefighter. "I've been a helpful person ...

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The “Suitest” Thing

Rooms with a view...and so much more. It's no secret that Arizona boasts some of the most luxurious resorts in the world. Here's the insider's guide to some of the most jaw-dropping, sweetest suites at our favorites: JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort & Spa This nearly 2,300-square-foot presidential suite offers some of the most stunning views-and the most luxurious balcony-in the Valley, not to mention oc ...

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Daniel Shepherd

Artist's vintage collages and minimalist paintings fascinate viewers A self-taught artist based in Phoenix, Daniel Shepherd creates fascinating abstract paintings and collages. Shepherd's abstract paintings are contemplative and minimalist in style. He refers to his painting technique as ambient painting and works with bright, saturated colors that often collide with pastels or minimal abstractions that bec ...

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