Picture Rocks Pride

Volume 7, Number 4 April, 2009

Welcome to the Picture Rocks Digest, a free newsletter about issues and events in the community. The print version of this all-volunteer publication is distributed at area businesses and community sites. If you have calendar events or news items, or if you would like to be added to our email list, please contact us at PictureRocksDigest@comcast.net.

The Picture Rocks Digest is a publication of Citizens for Picture Rocks, Inc., a nonprofit 501(c)(4) civic organization dedicated to improving the quality of life in the community. Citizens for Picture Rocks meets the third Tuesday of each month at 7:00 pm in the Picture Rocks Community Center, 5615 N. Sanders Road. Meetings are free and open to the public. The next meeting is April 21, 2009. Everyone is welcome to attend. Membership not required, but highly recommended. Dues are $20/year for an individual or $25/year for a family.

Monthly Meeting
Tuesday, April 21, 2009
Iced Tea Social Time at 6:30 p.m.
Meeting begins at 7:00 p.m.

Picture Rocks Community Center
5615 N. Sanders Road

Special Guest: Saguaro National Park Ranger Chip Littlefield
Featured Topic: Desert Tortoises
Come & Meet a Live Tortoise!
Free and open to the public.


The Picture Rocks Pride Community Faire will be held on Saturday, May 9, from 2:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. at Picture Rocks Community Center and Park.

There will be more than 15 community information booths, hosted by the Pima County Sheriff's Dept., Picture Rocks Fire District, Red Cross, Food Bank, Library and many more. There will be game booths, hot dogs and soft drinks, clowns, face painting, a jumping house, a cake walk, a pie-eating contest and live entertainment.

Dist. 3 Supervisor Sharon Bronson will be on hand to help celebrate the installation of the shade cover over the children's play area and the start of the BMX-Skate Park. There will be lots of prizes, including hourly drawings for gift cards, and everyone who attends will be eligible to win one of three reconditioned computers or a telescope!

Everything is free, so don't miss this chance to celebrate our pride in Picture Rocks with family and friends. If you would like more information or wish to volunteer to help, call Jamie Kisthardt 520-682- 0287.

C4PR Secretary and Faire organizer Jamie Kisthardt (left) and Lisa Torres of PRO Neighborhoods finalized the paperwork on a $3367 grant to help fund the Community Faire and promote Picture Rocks Pride


The March Citizens for Picture Rocks meeting fell on St. Patrick's Day and featured an Irish-themed potluck followed by a presentation on home and personal security by Lt. Scott Martin, Commander of the Pima County Sheriff's Department Tucson Mountain Station.

Among the green-clad St. Patrick's Day revelers were Rita Taylor and Pat Anderson (left) and Chris Banks (right)

Lt. Martin advised the three dozen neighbors present to be responsible for themselves and be aware of what is going on around them. Most crimes depend on opportunity, he said, so it is up to us to avoid creating those opportunities. His suggestions: Don't leave cars with the keys in them. Don't put open purses in temptation's way. Don't walk into dangerous-looking situations.

Identity theft is a big problem, and he urged that mailboxes be checked daily, and outgoing mail put into USPS blue mailboxes. He advised keeping a list of valuables and credit card numbers, and shredding credit card and other mail solicitations. A post office box is a good investment.

He urged people to look self-assured on the streets, ready for anything, and to trust their intuition if something doesn't feel right. Check out self-defense charts as to where to kick, gouge, butt or hit to stop an assailant. If attacked, take a mental snapshot of the suspect and their vehicle to aid law enforcement.

Most home burglaries take place weekdays when people are at work. Home security can be improved with deadbolts, solid wood or metal doors, window locks or dowels, and keeping exterior doors locked whether you are at home or away. Exterior lights should be left on at night. Motion-sensing lights or timers are helpful. If away, leave a few indoor lights and a radio on to discourage burglars. And, Lt. Martin warned, never open the door unless you know who is on the other side..


The next Adopt-a-Roadway cleanup will be on Sat., April 25, meeting at PRCC at 7:30 a.m. Lunch, tools and safety vests will be provided to volunteers over age 14. For more information, or to volunteer, call Chris at 682-7229.


Part Three: Arrival of the Conquerors

Athabascan peoples like the Navajo and Apache came down from Canada about the same time that Spanish conquistadors and missionaries arrived in the Southwest in the 1500s. The O'odham came under attack from the newcomers, and the Sobaipuri O'odham were driven off the San Pedro River by Apache raiders and merged with other O'odham groups.

Spanish soldiers, who called the O'odham people Papagos in the Phoenix area and Pimas around Tucson and Tubac, were forced to leave Terrenate Presidio after five years of Apache attacks. Indians were enslaved by the Spaniards and often brutally forced to become Christians. At the "sky city" of Acoma, many young male Indian survivors of the Spanish siege had one foot cut off to "tame" them.

There were revolts throughout the Southwest. The most successful was the Pueblo Revolt of 1680, in the Santa Fe-Rio Grande area, which expelled the Spanish from the Southwest for a dozen years. Revolts took place at Tubac and Tumacacori, also.

The Spaniards returned, still seeking the golden cities of legend, and the Southwest became part of New Spain, not winning independence and becoming Mexico until 1821. Yaqui Indians came up from the south and created a mix of Catholic and traditional ceremonies.

After the U.S. war with Mexico in 1848, the southern Arizona border was the Gila River, near Phoenix. The Tucson area remained part of Mexico until the Gadsden Purchase of 1854, when the United States paid $10 million for the land and established the present border.

Ranches were built and the native peoples removed. One local family, the Garcias, traces its roots here to the early 1800s. Neighbors Tillie Garcia and Jennie Garcia-Gonzales's great-grandmother homesteaded in the Orange Grove Road area when it was still Mexican land. The Garcia's cattle ranged from Ajo Road to Avra Valley Road, from Gates Pass to the Waterman-Roskruge Mountains. Cotton, corn and dairy farming took place along North Sandario Road. (to be continued)

The Picture Rocks Digest is written by Albert Lannon (email: bluemoon@dakotacom.net; phone: 622-3561). Additional materials and design by Karen J. Zopf.