Chino Valley's annual celebration features food and fun; Wall-to-wall entertainment marks 15th annual Labor Day weekend celebration

Theresa Rheingens of Chino Valley has her goat down and ready for tying. Rheingens won the event last year.

Courier photos/Jo. L. Keener

Early birds on Saturday morning can go to the Lions Club pancake breakfast at the Chino Valley Senior Center from 6 a.m. to 11 a.m. Tickets cost $4 for adults and $2 for children. Proceeds go to the Lions Club to assist local folks with sight and hearing problems.

The club also raises money in support of programs for the training of guide dogs, the Blind Center in Prescott and a summer camp for needy kids.

The third annual 10K run starts up at 7:15 a.m. at Memory Park. Runners pay $12 for the 10K run, and $8 for the two-mile fun run. Chino Valley runners may pick up registration forms at Safeway or Chino Valley High School. Runners outside the Chino Valley area may pick up forms at the YMCA or Champion Awards. Prizes include medals, awards and t-shirts. The cross-country team will provide aid stations and fruit. Proceeds benefit the Chino Valley High School Cross-Country team.

The parade kicks off at 10 a.m. on Road 1 West near the senior center. This year's parade theme is "The Window to the West of Yesterday and the West of the Future." The grand marshals for this year's parade are Tom and Margaret Perkins.

Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. at Heritage Middle School, with the entries in place by 9:30 a.m. The parade will travel down Butterfield Road to Horizon Way, then down Horizon Way to Palomino Road, and down Palomino Road to Memory Park on Road 1 West.

The Town of Chino Valley will close off the aforementioned streets from 9:30 a.m. to noon for the parade, as well as Perkinsville Road, from Highway 89 to Road 1 West; Voss Drive; and Road 1 West from Road 2 North to Road 3 North.

This year's parade contains 41 entries, down from 56 last year. Chino Valley Recreation Director Robin Dye explained that many of last year's entries included political entries, so the numbers even out.

Some of the entries this year include Head Start, VICTORY, the Valley Plainsmen, the Roughriders presenting the color guard at the beginning of the parade, Chino Valley High School's 65-piece marching band, Harold Pelot with his Belgian horses, Special Olympics, the Chino Valley Fire District, Mothers Against Drunk Driving, and much more, including rodeo queens from Chino Valley, Prescott, Prescott Valley, Glendale and Gilbert.

Vendors will also set up shop from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. in Memory Park. Some of the attractions include the Pepsi Challenge, the High Desert Artists showcasing some of their paintings, I'm Game with game booths, Cookie the Clown doing face painting and much more. The Virg Warner Band from Phoenix will provide musical entertainment.

The Yavapai Chili Society will sponsor a chili cook-off at 1 p.m. at Memory Park. Proceeds from the cookoff benefit the Chino Valley Community Theater.

At 3 p.m., the 51st Annual Corn Dinner begins at Del Rio Elementary School, sponsored by the Chino Valley High School Future Farmers of America (FFA) and the FFA Alumni Association. Tickets for the corn dinner cost $7 for adults, $5 for senior citizens 55 and up, $5 for children ages 6-12, and free for children under age 6. A family ticket is available for up to five family members for $25. Proceeds benefit the FFA for their trip to the FFA National Convention in Louisville, Ky.

The Family, Career and Community Leaders of America Club of Chino Valley High School is looking for dessert donations for this year's feast. Folks may drop off desserts at Del Rio's cafeteria as early at 11 a.m. on Saturday. To sign up, call 636-2298.

CYRA will hold rodeo events Saturday through Monday, all at the rodeo grounds. Slack competitions start at 8 a.m. (Saturday and Sunday only) and finals start at 2 p.m. for the Rodeo Connection.

The Rodeo Connection is a series of 15 rodeos starting in Rawhide, Ariz. on Memorial Day and ending with the finals in Chino Valley.

Also at 2 p.m. each day is the open rodeo, which includes a wild horse race and youth events. The youth events include steer riding, calf riding mutton busting and girls' tie-down calf roping.

The wild horse race involves three people — a mugger, who tries to hold the horse down; a shank, who tries to control the horse with a rope; and the rider, who tries to put a saddle on the horse and ride him to the finish line.

Tickets for each rodeo performance are $6 for adults, $5 for senior citizens, $3 for children ages 4-12 and free for children age 3 and under.

For more information about the rodeo events, contact Katrina Isaacs at 636-1917. For more information about the corn dinner, contact the Chino Valley High School agriculture department at 636-2214. For more information about other Territorial Days events, contact Recreation Director Robin Dye at 636-9780.

Lee Pulaski is a reporter for the Chino Valley Review, Contact him at lpulaski@prescottaz.com