Community Info

Thursday, February 14, 2019

Eviction Highlighted in Series of Library Events

Posted By on Thu, Feb 14, 2019 at 12:12 PM

Eviction is an issue of national importance, but it also plays out locally. Last year in Pima County, more than 13,000 evictions were filed in court and any more  happen that never make it to court.

In February and March, select Pima County Public Library book clubs will read Matthew Desmond's Evicted: Poverty and Profit in the American City, a book that will change the way we look at poverty in America.

The series will culminate with a community dialogue, "The Eviction Problem in Pima County: What can we do?," led by Stacy Butler, director of the Innovation for Justice Program and founding member of Step Up to Justice.


Tuesday, Feb. 19, 10 a.m. – noon
Oro Valley Public Library (Registration is required for this event. Please call 594-5580)

Saturday, Feb. 23, 10 – 11 a.m.
Murphy-Wilmot Library

Thursday, March 7, noon – 1 p.m.
Joel D. Valdez Main Library

Monday, March 11, 1:30 – 3 p.m.
Dusenberry-River Library

PANEL DISCUSSION (You don't need to have read the book to attend)

Thursday, March 21, 6 – 8 p.m.
Joel D. Valdez Main Library

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Tuesday, February 5, 2019

Girl Scouts: Here's a Sure Sale for Your Cookies!

Posted By on Tue, Feb 5, 2019 at 4:23 PM


One Tucson company is celebrating the 2019 Girl Scouts cookie season with a big promise: They will buy cookies from every girl who visits them this Thursday, Feb. 7.

For the fourth year in a row, Trusting Connections nanny agency and sitter service co-founders Rosalind Prather and Caroline Wesnitzer are vowing to purchase cookies from every scout that visits between 3:30 p.m. and 5:30 p.m. while they set up shop at the Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona headquarters (4300 E. Broadway Blvd.)

The cookie sales don't just help fund Girl Scout programming. Young women also learn entrepreneurial skills and self confidence.

From the Girl Scouts website: “It's about the experience of running her very own cookie sale, working with others, and building a lifetime of confidence as she learns five skills (goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills, and business ethics) essential to leadership, success, and life.”

In the spirit of the programs’ educational goals, girls will be asked to give either individual or group sales pitches to Prather and Wesnitzer. The scouts will then draw from a jar with notes indicating how many boxes the company will purchase—between one and 25.

Signs, posters and other sales props are welcomed.

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Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Three Great Things to Do in Tucson Today: Wednesday Jan. 23

Posted By on Wed, Jan 23, 2019 at 1:00 AM

The Presidio District Experience: A Food Heritage & History Tour. We all know Tucson has one of the richest food histories around the country. But have you truly experienced it? On this tour, you can get in deep with the City of Gastronomy and learn about the old and new ingredients that make Tucson’s food what it is today. It’s a history lesson and a meal all in one! Hosted by the Presidio San Agustín del Tucson. 12:30 to 4:30 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23. 196 N. Court Ave., corner of Court Avenue and Washington Street. $75. Details here.

Reflections About Bears Ears: An Evening in Honor of Karen Strom. In 2015 and 2016, the Bears Ears Inter-Tribal Coalition in southern Utah advocated for the establishment of Bears Ears National Monument, and in 2017, it already had to respond to a downsizing of the monument. At this event, Keynote speaker Carleton Bowekaty, member of both the coalition and the Pueblo of Zuni Tribal Council, will speak. Also on the lineup is astronomer and photographer Stephen Strom, who made a recent gift of Native American art to the Arizona State Museum in memory of his late wife. He’ll be talking about his project documenting Bears Ears, and will be signing copies of his new books, Bears Ears: Views from a Sacred Land and Voices from Bears Ears (which he wrote with Rebecca Robinson). 7 p.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23. Center for English as a Second Language, 1100 James E. Rogers Way, room 103. Reception and book signing to follow program. Free. Details here.

  • Courtesy of Arizona State Museum

School of Art’s Letterpress Lab. You probably didn’t know that the UA has a letterpress lab, just like you probably didn’t know how many different kinds of printing methods and practices there are in this great big world: letterpress printing, experimental printing, paper techniques, binding and a booker. And in terms of the technology: board shears, paper cutters, book presses, guillotines, wire-o-binder, a laser cutter, a photopolymer plate maker and an industrial sewing machine. The School of Art’s Letterpress lab has it all! Go check it out at this special tour. 10 to 11:30 a.m. Wednesday, Jan. 23. School of Art Graduate Studios, 1231 N. Fremont Ave. Free, but reservations required. Details here. Events compiled by Briannon Wilfong, Emily Dieckman, B.S. Eliot and Jeff Gardner.

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Monday, January 21, 2019

Pima County Hepatitis A Outbreak Reaches 34 Cases

Posted By on Mon, Jan 21, 2019 at 2:58 PM

Pima County health officials continue to respond to an ongoing outbreak of hepatitis A cases in Pima County. - COURTESY OF PIMA COUNTY
  • Courtesy of Pima County
  • Pima County health officials continue to respond to an ongoing outbreak of hepatitis A cases in Pima County.

Nearly three dozen Pima County residents have reportedly contracted hepatitis A in Pima County in the last three months, according to the county health department. Twenty cases of already been reported in 2019.

People experiencing homelessness and those who are using or trying to quit using illicit drugs are particularly at risk, and the county has urged they receive the hepatitis A vaccine. Of the 34 cases linked to the outbreak since Nov. 1, 27 have resulted in a hospitalization.

“As we continue to see cases, we are diligently working to protect the people most vulnerable from becoming infected,” said Deputy County Health Director Paula Mandel, in a release. “We are seeing this outbreak hit users of illicit drugs, those trying to quit illicit drugs, and people experiencing homelessness. We want to get the word out that the safe and effective vaccine and good hand hygiene can help protect you.”

Pima County is already working with area service providers, community health clinics, substance treatment facilities and other similar institutions to establish vaccination clinics.

“We are taking action to get ahead of this; to stop this infectious disease from continuing to spread,” said Dr. Carlos Perez-Velez, Health Department Deputy Chief Medical Officer, in a release. “With the continued support and cooperation of partners throughout the community, we have been able to provide more and more hepatitis A virus vaccinations to the vulnerable residents at high risk.”

Hepatitis A is a vaccine-preventable infectious disease that can damage the liver. Infected people shed the virus in their stool in high concentrations from two to three weeks before to one week after onset of clinical illness, and thereby spread the virus during this time. They often carry it on poorly washed hands. It spreads to others when they swallow invisible amounts of the virus through food, drink, sexual activity or after touching contaminated objects. While proper hand washing can prevent spread of infection, vaccination provides long-term protection against the virus.

Symptoms include jaundice, fatigue, stomach pain, nausea and diarrhea. People can be contagious for two weeks before, and one week after, symptoms appear, and unknowingly spread the virus. Rarely, the virus can cause liver failure and death – especially in persons with impaired immune systems or chronic liver disease.

HAV vaccine is readily available at doctor’s offices, health clinics, and pharmacies. People who cannot pay for vaccinations or who do not have health insurance should contact the Health Department or a community health clinic near them. Places to get vaccinated can be found at

The county has provided more information about hepatitis A infection and where to get the HAV vaccine, at or over the phone at (520) 724-7797.

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Furlough Freebies Extend Beyond Food

Posted By on Mon, Jan 21, 2019 at 12:43 PM

  • Unscrewed Theater Facebook
Local restaurants have been providing free meals to government workers affected by the shutdown, but now other local business are stepping in to help out.

Tucson's Unscrewed Theater announced a program called "Furlough Freebies, Taking the Money Out of Funny." Starting Jan. 18 all federal employees with federal ID's can see any show for free.

Unscrewed Theater's executive director Chris Seidman said that the free shows were inspired by a member of Unscrewed Theater, making the government shutdown hit home.

“Unscrewed Theater’s very own volunteer Gayla Gongwer is a federal employee who has been hit by this unfortunate shutdown" Seidman said in a release.

The theater is working to alleviate some of the stress on federal workers through comedy. The non-profit improv theater released a statement:

“Unscrewed Theater” wants to remind all of the federal workers in our community that they are not facing this very difficult time alone. 
Another local business is getting in on the giving with a promotion on alignment. KS Mission Automotive is giving away free alignments for government employees during the shutdown. For more information visit

Some restaurants around town that are offering free food specials are breakfast at Hotel McCoy, burgers and mac and cheese at Pastiche and a buffet at Saffron Indian Bistro. 

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Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Stella Tucker, Tohono O’odham Keeper of Saguaro Fruit Harvest, Dies at 71

Posted By on Tue, Jan 15, 2019 at 10:20 AM

Local author and artist Kimi Eisele remembers Stella Tucker who passed away on Wednesday, Jan. 9. Memorial services will be held on Saturday, Jan. 19 at San Xavier beginning at 9 a.m.

   Tohono O’odham elder and teacher Stella Tucker passed away on January 9, 2019 at the age of 71, surrounded by family. Stella, a mother of three daughters, was known publicly for her work upholding the tradition of the annual baidaj, or saguaro fruit harvest, a tradition she learned from her parents, grandparents, and her late aunt, Juanita Ahil.

Juanita Ahil harvested from desert lands west of Tucson, lands that in 1961 were designated by U.S. Department of the Interior as Saguaro National Monument. That designation threatened the camp as officials initially prohibited the continued harvest. Friends and educators from the Arizona Sonora Desert Museum wrote a letter on behalf of Ahil prompting then-Secretary of the Interior Stuart Udall to grant permission for the harvest to continue.

Stella took over the camp in 1994 after Ahil’s death and received a special permit from Saguaro National Park every year to continue the harvest. (Saguaro National Monument was upgraded to a National Park in 1994.)

For 25 years, Stella received visitors, students, scientists, artists, and family at the camp to share with them the declining tradition of saguaro harvesting and promote the interrelationship between the O’odham people, the saguaro cactus, and the Sonoran Desert. She also taught many workshops at the Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum.

Stella’s primary interest was engaging Tohono O’odham youth in order to keep the tradition alive. She expressed gratitude that her daughter, Tanisha Tucker, had joined her in running the camp and offering workshops. In a 2017 issue of Edible Baja Arizona magazine, Stella said, “It’s a dying culture. One day nobody will know how to do it. I want them to learn. It’s really important to me that they learn and keep this culture going.”

Tina Vavages-Andrew, the Ancestral Ranger at Saguaro National Park, organized educational visits to the camp for nearly 50 schoolchildren and others every year. “Stella was very patient and willing to share the knowledge she possessed. I most enjoyed her personal stories of her harvesting experiences,” said Vavages-Andrew.

Barbara Rose, who runs of Bean Tree Farm and offers workshops about desert foods, met Stella in the mid-1990s when she went to help her harvest saguaro fruit. “Stella shared her homeland so graciously with all who came to Saguaro Camp. We were fortunate to experience her love and care for the desert and its gifts, the sweetness of its fruits. She kept generations of wisdom safe, and now her daughter Tanisha carries that love and wisdom forward. We will miss her,” Rose said.

In 2018 Stella was awarded a Master-Apprentice Artist Award from the Southwest Folklife Alliance in honor of her work upholding, preserving, and teaching the tradition. The award supported her work in passing along the tradition to her daughter, Tanisha Tucker.

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Tuesday, January 8, 2019

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona Hosting Kids’ Healthy Cooking Contest

Posted By on Tue, Jan 8, 2019 at 10:26 AM

  • BigStock
Is your child a culinary wunderkind, whipping up delicious meals with ease for amazed house guests? Or maybe they’re just handy in the kitchen; more than willing to help out when it’s time to make dinner.

Either way, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Southern Arizona is challenging all junior culinarians to submit their healthiest (and most delicious) side dishes for a chance to win plenty of prizes, including the title of Arizona’s Top Kid Chef.

The ninth annual Walk On! Kids Cooking Challenge launched on Jan. 1, and runs through Wednesday, Jan. 23. Children between the ages of 9 and 12 years old living anywhere in Arizona can participate.

Recipes should be for “delicious, nutritious and kid-friendly” side dishes, and can be submitted online at Finalists will serve their submissions at a Phoenix Suns home game Monday, Feb. 4 and compete to win prizes.

Recipe submissions must be an original recipe for a hot or cold side dish, include at least one fruit and/or vegetable and be cooked within 20 minutes (not including prep time).

“Year after year I am in awe of the creations these kid chefs come up with,” said Myrna Collins, health promotion executive, Blue Cross Blue Shield of Arizona, in a release. “The contest inspires participants to try nutrient-rich ingredients like quinoa, cabbage, avocados, beets and zucchini, which are foods many kids shy away from. It’s also a great opportunity for parents to work side by side with their kids in the kitchen, trying fruits and vegetables in new ways.”

The top five recipes will be selected by a panel of experts based on nutritional value, taste and originality. After the cooking demonstrations, recipes will be posted online for a public vote. Voting will be open from Feb. 4 through Feb. 15.

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Monday, January 7, 2019

Northwest Healthcare Planning Eastside Hospital

Posted By on Mon, Jan 7, 2019 at 2:31 PM

  • BigStock
Northwest Healthcare recently announced the development of a 70-bed hospital near Houghton Road and Old Spanish Trail as part of its “No Boundaries” strategy to increase access points to quality healthcare services for Tucson and surrounding communities.

While the company recently announced its intentions, the plan is contingent upon approval of the primary jobs incentive by the Tucson’s City Council and closing on the land purchase.

The eastside hospital follows an announcement last May when Northwest shared plans to build an 18-bed neighborhood hospital and medical offices facility in Sahuarita that will open in early 2020.

“We stepped outside of our ‘northwest’ footprint more than eight years ago when we opened an urgent care in Green Valley,” said Kevin Stockton, Regional President and Market CEO for Northwest Healthcare, in a release. “Since then, our commitment to deliver quality care at convenient access points throughout Pima County has not wavered. We have long wanted to provide acute care services for residents on the east side of Tucson. With the success of our freestanding emergency room and physician clinics in Vail, this new hospital is a logical and very exciting next step.”

According to Northwest, the eastside hospital will offer a “broad range of services designed to keep residents close to home.” Expected services will include an emergency room, cardiac cath lab, comprehensive surgical services, labor and delivery including a NICU, outpatient imaging and a medical office building housing primary care, orthopedics, cardiology and OB/GYN.

Joe Snell, president and CEO of Sun Corridor Inc., said, “With the addition of nearly 600 jobs, this expansion of Northwest Healthcare will deepen the healthcare assets on the east side of our region.”

Sun Corridor also announced the news via press release, welcoming Northwest Healthcare’s expanded footprint in Southern Arizona.

"Access to quality healthcare is always a top concern of both area employers and site selectors, and we congratulate Northwest on choosing Tucson and southern Arizona once again," Snell said.

Northwest Healthcare already includes Northwest Medical Center, Oro Valley Hospital, Northwest Emergency Centers in Vail and Marana, five Northwest Urgent Care locations, The Women’s Center at Northwest, Northwest Allied Physicians, Northwest Cardiology, Northwest Tucson Surgery Center, Tucson Surgery Center and Center for Pain Management.

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Staff Pick

Rosanne Cash & Her Band – She Remembers Everything

The Fox is pleased to welcome back to our stage, Tucson Favorite Rosanne Cash. This time, she’s… More

@ Fox Tucson Theatre Wed., Feb. 20, 7:30-9 p.m. 17 W. Congress St.

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