Picture Rocks Pride

Volume 5, Number 10 November, 2007

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 November 20, 2007. Everyone is welcome to attend — membership not required, but highly recommended! 


More than 250 Picture Rocks neighbors came together on October 13 as part of statewide activities to celebrate "Getting Arizona Involved in Neighborhoods."

information tables cooking hot dogs entertainment

There were a dozen informational tables with literature, and music by the Picture Rocks Community Center's Hummin' & Strummin' musicians. Dozens of volunteers dished out 260 hot dogs and 45 pounds of potato and macaroni salad provided by Citizens for Picture Rocks, as well as hundreds of cookies brought in by neighbors. The Red Cross collected 13 pints of blood, and $154 was donated to help purchase a sound system for musicians and community groups using the Community Center.

sherrif volunteers Bronson refs basketball firefighters & bloodmobile;

Dist. 3 Supervisor Sharon Bronson officiated at a basketball game which saw the Picture Rocks Pride team best off-duty Picture Rocks Fire Department players by a score of 22-15. State Rep. Jennifer Burns' mother represented her daughter who was stuck in an airport.

Jamie Kisthardt coordinated the first-ever free event, which many said should become an annual get-together, a celebration of our community.

Group to Meet Again on Dec. 1

Thirty-four young Picture Rocks residents attended a meeting on Oct. 20 with Pima County Neighborhood Reinvestment Program Coordinator Bennett Bernal and a skate park designer who showed what might be possible at Picture Rocks Park. The project grows out of 2004 bond money designated for Picture Rocks by Supervisor Sharon Bronson, but Bernal made it clear that there is a long process to be worked through before final approval.

CPR Youth Advisory Council Coordinators Tammy Cameron, Dann Barr and Sam Mattison said that community support is vital to winning approval, and letters from neighbors and businesses would be helpful. Letters of support for a Picture Rocks BMX-Skatepark should be addressed to Supervisor Sharon Bronson, and sent to Tammy Cameron, 12420 W. Lord Lane, Tucson, AZ 85743 (phone 260-4923).

The project has received the support of Lt. Scott Martin, Commander of the Tucson Mountain District Sheriff's Station, who said at the October 16 CPR meeting, "Kids need a place to go, a sense of community... Keep on doing what you're doing!"

Another youth meeting is set for Saturday, Dec. 1, at 1 p.m. at the Picture Rocks Community Center, and all interested young people are urged to attend.

Citizens for Picture Rocks plans to submit proposals for Community Development Block Grants to fund other park projects, including a shade cover for the children's playground and amenities (e.g., lights, fences, bleachers, water fountains) for the BMX-skatepark.

Tuesday, Nov. 20, 7:00 p.m.

Picture Rocks Community Center
5615 N. Sanders Road

On the Agenda:
Dave Liss, Director of Safety & Security, MUSD
Patricia Cadigan, Principal, Picture Rocks Intermediate School
Review of Membership Applications
Updates on BMX-Skatepark and Other Projects

There will be NO meeting in December, BUT
plans are underway for our New Year's Eve Bash!


Editor's Note: Jack - not his real name - has lived in Picture Rocks most of his life. He has used drugs and alcohol since he was 13 years old, has five arrests, a DUI, and two convictions related to possession of marijuana and cocaine. He has been a thief and a dealer. He has been clean for five years, and is now a family man with a job. He agreed to be interviewed by Picture Rocks Digest (PRD) because he wants people to know what life in "the game" is like, and why no one should even try it once. PRD cannot vouch for the details of Jack's story, and his opinions are his own, but his is not an unusual story.

PRD: When did you start using drugs?
JACK: I was 13, in the seventh grade, and I went to a birthday party where everyone was smoking marijuana. There were some cute girls there and I wanted to keep up. I'd been drinking liquor off and on for years. Actually, I was a late starter, most of my friends had been smoking pot for a long time.

PRD: Did your folks know?
JACK: Not really. My Mom was really in denial about why I was acting out, but my Dad had a clue, and things got really nasty between us.

PRD: What was the school situation like?
JACK: I went to school stoned every day. Most of my friends did. There were only a handful that didn't use anything. We were using pot, booze, pills, acid, whatever it took to get us high. All anyone had to do was go to the bathroom and there would usually be someone there with a stash. I never used in school, but I went there high. I used acid just about every day for a year! I think Marana High School graduated us just to get rid of us. When I went to sleep I didn't want to wake up unless I could get high.

PRD: When did you start meth?
JACK: I was 14. We kids swore that we would never snort anything up our noses, that was too hard-core for us. But a school buddy told me, 'Hey, you'll like this," and I snorted meth. It was the best feeling I've ever had, before or after. I had a job and went to work singing, I was so happy.

PRD: Did you become addicted right away?
JACK: I used it as it came along for a couple of months, but nothing ever equaled that first high. And I wanted to chase that high, to feel that good again, so I never turned it down. It wasn't long before I was stealing from women's purses to buy meth, and after a couple of months I had the opportunity to start selling it. I was smoking it every day now and selling enough to maintain my habit. I never sold meth in school, but I did sell pot, acid and pills there.

To be continued next month. In Part 2 Jack talks about life in "the game" and quitting.

Notes: Pot is marijuana (grass, weed, smoke, ganja), a hemp plant usually dried and smoked. It causes mood exaggeration and can be a stimulant or a depressant. Acid is lysergic acid diethylamide; it overloads the brain stem, causing hallucinations. Pills may be prescription or street uppers (amphetamines) or downers (codeine, oxycontin, morphine, demerol, other painkillers, Quaaludes, barbiturates, valium, etc.), or lab-created new "designer drugs." Meth is methamphetamine (speed, crank, ice, crystal, the poor man's cocaine). It causes a rush and mild euphoria; long-term effects include paranoia, malnutrition and rotting teeth. PCP (angel dust, ice, krystal) is a veterinary anesthetic resembling meth that makes users confused, paranoid and often fearlessly violent. Coke is cocaine, derived from the coca plant. Snorted and smoked, often as crack cocaine, it gives an intense rush and disrupts brain functioning.


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