Friday, August 8, 2014

Cactus Drive-In Theater Kickstarter: Let's Bring Back a Drive-In

Posted By on Fri, Aug 8, 2014 at 12:24 PM

Back in 2010 when we mourned the closure and then demolition of Tucson's last drive-in, the De Anza, Tucson artist Charlie Spillar was there with a group of volunteers who saved components of the drive-in's giant screen with the idea to use them for a new nonprofit drive-in project they coined the Cactus Drive-In, the name of the original drive-in at the same Alvernon Way location in 1951.

Four years later, Spillar is still in Tucson and he and other drive-in enthusiasts haven't given up on the dream, and Weekly World Central is glad they have that tenacious desert spirit. They formed the Cactus Drive-in Theatre Foundation and they launched a Kickstarter today to make it happen—they want to raise $18,000.

C'mon Tucson. We love outdoor movie theater experiences, but there's nothing like a drive-in. Let's do this.

From Charlie:

The Cactus Drive-In Theater Foundation is a non-profit (501C3) with plans to bring a drive-in theater back to town. Their ultimate goal is to establish a permanent, community-owned drive-in theater in Pima County. This Kickstarter project will bring them one step closer to fulfilling that dream.

In April of this year the original founders George Cohn and Charles Spillar of the CDITF took back control of the non-profit, elected a total new board of directors, and this new energized group has revitalized the efforts to have a drive-in theater back in Tucson. Originally the Cactus Drive-In Theatre, it was renamed the DeAnza in 1977 and kept the name until its closure & destruction in 2009. Many mourned the downfall of Tucson's last drive-in theater. As a result the Cactus Drive-In Theatre Foundation was formed, and its Facebook page blossomed to nearly 1500 followers since April of this year and new supporters are joining daily.

The funds raised through this project will go towards the purchase of a large inflatable movie screen, a high-quality movie projector, and generator. These materials, paired with their existing FM transmitter and authentic restored drive-in movie speakers, will allow them to host "pop up" drive-in movie events throughout Pima County. This "pop-up" model is currently being implemented successfully in Punta Gorda, Florida to show monthly drive-in movies for their community.

When the non-profit acquires a permanent location in the future for a drive-in, CDITF will be able to continue to use the inflatable screen for several years. A special digital movie projector is required to show new, first-run movies (which is not in the scope of this Kickstarter project). Other infrastructure (a permanent snack bar, flush toilets, etc.) will be added over time.

Tags: , , , , ,

The Final Slate: TUSD School Board Candidates

Posted By on Fri, Aug 8, 2014 at 9:30 AM

H/T to Blog for Arizona's Carolyn Classen on the nine people who met Wednesday's 5 p.m. filing deadline for Tucson Unified School District's governing board.

The candidates for the Nov. 4 election, including incumbents Adelita Grijalva and Michael Hicks, according to Classen:

Rene Bernal , applied software engineer at Honeywell, political newcomer

Debe Campos-Fleenor, owner of financial/ insurance agency, ran before in 2012

Don Cotton, self-employed businessman, ran before in 2012, father of 2 TuSD students

Miguel Cuevas, former TUSD board member, elected in 2008, lost in 2012 (came in 4th for 3 seats, out of a pool of 12 candidates), project coach at AFNI,

Jenifer Darland, policical newcomer, community activist, mother of 2 TUSD children, www.,

Adelita Grijalva, current board member and President, has served since 2004,, daughter of CD 3 Congressman Raul Grijalva, mother of 2 TUSD students

Michael Hicks, current board member, elected in 2010,, father of 2 TUSD students

Betts Putnam-Hidalgo, community activist & part time teacher, ran before in 2012, mother of son at TUSD school,

Francis Saitta, Pima Community College adjunct math/ science teacher, ran unsuccessfully for PCC Governing Bd. in 2012

Want to know more about the candidates and ask them questions? The Racial Justice Team at St. Mark's Presbyterian Church is hosting a candidate forum on Wednesday, Aug. 27, 6:30to 8:30 p.m. at St. Mark's, 3809 E. 3rd St.

The Weekly is planning coverage for this particular election. Some of the candidates maybe familiar to our readers, as they ran in the 2012 election, a contentious race with 12 candidates on the ballot, including three incumbents. Read that story here.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Thursday, August 7, 2014

Howard Salmon Left Us This Morning

Posted By on Thu, Aug 7, 2014 at 3:33 PM


Tucson artist and friend to many of us (and former Phantom Limbs drummer) Howard Salmon died early this morning, finally succumbing to the brain cancer he fought so hard for almost two years.

The funeral is this Sunday, Aug. 10, at Temple Emanu-El, 225 N Country Club Road, 10 a.m. followed by a burial service at Evergreen, 3015 N. Oracle Road. The family will be observing shiva for seven days. In Judaism, this is the week-long traditional mourning period for relatives and close friends. I was told those close to Salmon who may want to participate and visit with his family should call to find out what time they are taking visitors. It's customary to bring food to the family during this time.

Back in October 2012, we mentioned a Facebook status Salmon had just posted on his prognosis—the doctor telling him he had until the end of the year:

Please drop me a line while I'm still alive. I've got an aggressive brain tumor, and my doctors say I'll be a goner by year's end (that is, in 3 months). I plan on spending my remaining days drawing, painting, and blogging. If I know you, thank you for your friendship. If you want to write me, please do so sooner rather than later, because I'm getting a little foggier everyday ...

We're reaching out and talking to close friend's of Salmon's for a story on the artist and musician, and if we have any updates, we'll be sure to share. Meanwhile, wouldn't hurt to sit back and spend some time with him on his blog. His last post in April, after not blogging since his diagnosis, was on his drawings. He was always happy to share those with all of us.

Yeah, we were damn lucky.

Tags: , , ,

Center for Biological Diversity Keeps Up Fight for Santa Rita Wildlife

Posted By on Thu, Aug 7, 2014 at 9:15 AM

According to the Center for Biological Diversity's Randy Serraglio (yes, that Serraglio, a past Tucson Weekly contributor and columnist), the Tucson-based organization sent a letter yesterday urging U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service to "again take an in-depth look at how the proposed Rosemont copper mine in southern Arizona will affect endangered species, including jaguars, ocelots and rare fish. Agency scientists, in earlier drafts of their 'biological opinion' of the project, concluded the mine would not be compatible with endangered animals in the area, including the only jaguar known to be living in the United States. That conclusion was later reversed by a supervisor. The Service, though, announced earlier this year it would revisit that opinion in the face of new information"

Go here to read the letter sent to Benjamin Tuggle, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's regional director.

More from Serraglio:

“The science is clear: The Rosemont Mine cannot coexist with jaguars, ocelots and other endangered wildlife whose survival is on the line,” said Randy Serraglio, a conservation advocate with the Center. “The agency’s own scientists agreed repeatedly in draft opinions that the mine would cause unacceptable harm to the jaguar, but they were overruled by a supervisor for dubious reasons.”

The Rosemont Mine would directly destroy thousands of acres of public land in the Coronado National Forest officially designated as critical habitat essential to the survival and recovery of U.S. jaguars. And hydrological analyses have determined that insatiable groundwater pumping by the mine would create a permanent hydraulic sink that threatens to damage or dry up nearby Cienega Creek, a designated “outstanding water of the United States” that provides critical habitat for endangered Chiricahua leopard frog and two fish, Gila chub and Gila topminnow.

“Aquatic species such as endangered fish and frogs have nowhere to go if the Rosemont Mine sucks the life out of the creek where they live,” said Serraglio, adding that the Cienega Creek watershed also contributes 20 percent of the annual natural recharge to the aquifer that provides Tucson’s groundwater supply. “The permanent damage Rosemont would cause to our water security is not worth any amount of copper.”

“The Service’s earlier decision to ignore the conclusions of its own scientists and give a free pass to the Rosemont Mine appears to be the latest example of the Obama administration’s disturbing tendency to allow politics to trump science,” said Serraglio. “We’re encouraged that the Service has chosen to revisit its mistaken opinion on Rosemont, but we’re also very concerned that politics will continue to muddy the waters when it comes to decisions affecting America’s most endangered wildlife.”

Tags: , , , ,

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Sarah Palin on Doug Ducey: "Right On!"

Posted By on Wed, Aug 6, 2014 at 5:45 PM

A whole bunch of endorsements in the Republican primary are rolling out this week:

Yvonne Wingett Sanchez of the Arizona Republic/AZCentral/WhateverTheyCAllThemselvesTheseDays brings us the news that Gov. Jan Brewer will be endorsing Scott Smith at the Chicago Cubs newish spring-training facility, which was one of Scott's wins when served as mayor of Mesa.

Meanwhile, Arizona Treasurer and primary frontrunner Doug Ducey has landed the endorsement of none other than Sarah Palin, queen goddess of the right wing.

Here's Palin's statement, via Team Ducey:

Doug recently shared his vision with me, which he will carry with him each day as Arizona’s governor: "I’m a believer in private enterprise, the dignity of work, limited government and the possibilities of freedom. I am a forthright defender of the right to bear arms — which is guaranteed not only by the US Constitution, but by the Constitution of Arizona. I am a believer in the rights of the unborn and the goodness of every life, and I have promised that as governor I will champion those values.” Right on!

In other endorsement news:

Continue reading »

New Cyclovia Tucson Route Announced for November 2nd Event

Posted By on Wed, Aug 6, 2014 at 11:30 AM


For the first time in five years, the extremely popular Cyclovia biking event will have a new route come Sunday, November 2, one in which organizers say will link "the thriving Sixth Avenue and Sixth Street business district to University Boulevard, Fourth Avenue shopping and entertainment districts, to the Sun Link Modern Streetcar, and the University of Arizona to neighborhoods in the north via Tucson’s newest bicycle feature: the Fourth Avenue / Fontana Bicycle Boulevard."

In this its second cycling-celebration of 2014, Clyclovia's host Living Streets Alliance expect up to 30,000 residents to participate, but they are hoping to get donations to cover expenses, which cover police barricades, maps and the various entertainment hub activities along the route. Living Streets' goal is $15,000, and you can help them achieve this by donating to Cylcovia Tucson Fundraiser.

Scroll down for a download of the complete route, and below is the full Living Streets Alliance press release.

Plans for a fall Cyclovia event have been in the works since early 2013. For the first time in the five-year history of the event, Cyclovia Tucson organizers have announced a new route for the second event of 2014, which will take place on Sunday, November 2nd. “Tucson is exceptional for walking and bicycling between the months of October and April,” says Ann Chanecka, City of Tucson Bicycle and Pedestrian program Coordinator, “and we see big jumps in the number of people using these options for transportation during these months. Switching Cyclovia to a spring / fall schedule is a great way to celebrate the return of cooler weather to Tucson and encourage people to get out and give biking and walking a try.”

Organizers have released information about the route which links the thriving Sixth Avenue and Sixth Street business district to University Boulevard, Fourth Avenue shopping and entertainment districts, to the Sun Link Modern Streetcar, and the University of Arizona to neighborhoods in the north via Tucson’s newest bicycle feature: the Fourth Avenue / Fontana Bicycle Boulevard. The route will take participants on a tour of some of Tucson’s most beloved parks — Mansfield and Catalina — and spans seven central Tucson neighborhoods. Organizers expect 25,000 to 30,000 people from across the region to participate in the seventh event of its kind.

On August 1st, Living Streets Alliance — the organization that presents two Cyclovia events each year — launched Cyclovia’s Fall Fundraising campaign with a goal of raising $15,000 by August 15th. Donations can be made via the Cyclovia Tucson website and are tax-deductible to the extent allowed by law. One-of-a-kind artwork, t-shirts, and bandanas celebrating the grassroots enthusiasm this event has generated across the region are available by donation at All proceeds go directly towards expenses for the November 2nd event which include police, traffic barricades, printed maps, and the activity and entertainment hubs.

Cyclovia Tucson has grown into one of the region’s most exciting initiatives to promote the benefits of active transportation and healthy lifestyles. With dozens of free activities, games, entertainment, and local businesses located within easy walking or biking distance along the route, Cyclovia Tucson helps make the possibilities of Tucson’s streets visible to all who attend.

Continue reading »

Tags: , ,

Press Conference at Noon on Gutierrez BP Abuse Case, Charges

Posted By on Wed, Aug 6, 2014 at 11:07 AM

A noon press conference will follow today's 9 a.m. hearing of Shena Gutierrez, founding member of the Border Patrol Victims Network, at the DeConcini Federal Courthouse, 405 W. Congress St.

Gutierrez and two other activists contend they were physically and verbally abused by BP officers at the Nogales Port of Entry on Saturday, May 24.

In a press release from Border Action Network, Gutierrez was traveling to Mexico to tell her husband's story when the incident occurred. Her husband Jose was allegedly nearly beaten to death by CBP agents in Arizona in 2011. Gutierrez returned to the Port of Entry with two other Border Patrol Victims Network volunteers to demand the name of the agent she alleges abused her so she could file an official complaint.

From the LA Weekly on Jose Gutierrez:

After the L.A. Immigration Court deported him on March 21, Wilson says she lost touch with her husband, but guessed he would try to come back, seeing as their youngest — a five-month-old baby girl — was in the hospital. (Not to mention he has no roots in Mexico.)

The next she heard of him, Gutierrez was in a coma at St. Joseph's Hospital in Phoenix.

Wilson got a call from the Mexican consulate in Yuma, Arizona, saying, "We have to let you know that there has been an accident."

U.S. Customs and Border Protection will only tell Wilson that, on March 30, her husband made it to the second inspection at the San Luis point of entry in Arizona before he "got scared and tried to run back." When he allegedly tried to fight off CBP agents, they whipped out a taser.

Here's the CBP account:

An individual being processed for entering the country illegally March 30, at the San Luis Port attempted to flee into Mexico. The man was combative, ignored commands to halt and subsequently was subdued by CBP officers using an electronic control device (ECD). Initial reports say the man struck his head on the ground during the incident.
Emergency medical personnel responded to the scene and took him to a local area hospital for further medical attention.

We regret the injury and will continue to actively cooperate with the ongoing investigation.

More on Shena's case from Border Action Network after the jump.

Continue reading »

Tags: , , , , , ,

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Wingspan Board Update on Move to SAAF

Posted By on Tue, Aug 5, 2014 at 12:00 PM

Wingspan's board of directors issued an update this week on the LGBT community center's programs move to the Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation:

The board of directors for the Southern Arizona AIDS Foundation (SAAF) unanimously voted Tuesday evening to move forward with plans to acquire Wingspan, Tucson's Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender (LGBT) community center, and its programs. The SAAF Board has agreed to immediately take on and continue 2 of Wingspan's most vital programs, the Anti-Violence Project and Eon Youth Lounge. These 2 programs and associated staff will move to SAAF this Friday August 1.

SAAF Board President Miguel Cruz stated, "This is an incredible opportunity to enhance SAAF's already strong programs while maintaining Wingspan's vital & critical community outreach. Simply put, the SAAF Board of Directors could not imagine a community without these programs and our vote to continue Wingspan's work is well-aligned with SAAF's mission of creating and sustaining a healthier community."

Over the next several months, staff from SAAF and the Wingspan board of directors will work together to ensure a smooth transition and begin planning for the long term success & revitalization of Wingspan. SAAF Executive Director Wendell Hicks says, "We recognize and respect Wingspan's brand and reputation in the community. Our hope is to maintain and grow that brand. There is no doubt that the LGBT landscape is constantly changing and we at SAAF feel that there is still an important role for an LGBT center to play in the community. We're excited to continue the amazing work Wingspan has been doing over the past 26 years."

The annual Wingspan Dinner, originally scheduled for Saturday September 13, will be moved to spring 2015 and details of the event will be forthcoming.

SAAF's mission is to create and sustain a healthier community through a compassionate, comprehensive response to HIV/AIDS.

Wingspan's mission is to promote the freedom, equality, safety and well-being of LGBT people.

Tags: , , , , , , ,

Staff Pick

Center for Creative Photography

Performance: Contemporary Photography from the Douglas Nielsen Collection. Presenting more than 100 works from the private collection… More

@ Center for Creative Photography Aug. 9-Jan. 4 1030 N. Olive Road.

» More Picks

Submit an Event Listing

Popular Content

  1. Here's an Article About Chimichangas Designed to Make You Angry (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  2. Linda Ronstadt Not a Fan of Downtown These Days (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  3. Stalinist Architecture or UA Off-Campus Student Housing? (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  4. Charlie Sheen Uses Ice Bucket Challenge to Talk to Former 'Two and a Half Men' Co-Stars (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)
  5. Arizona's Economic/Education Divide (The Range: The Tucson Weekly's Daily Dispatch)

Facebook Activity

© 2014 Tucson Weekly | 3725 Mona Lisa Rd. Ste. 125, Tucson AZ 85741 | (520) 797-4384 | Powered by Foundation