Originally Published: September 19, 2012 9:10 a.m.
Cordes Lakes Day started early with American Legion and community members helping to put up flags on the Avenue of Flags at Henry Cordes Park. Walk-a-thon participants were ready to walk from Henry Cordes Park to the Community Center and started at 8 a.m. sharp. Parade participants started to arrive and were lined up in the parking lot. The FHA sign holders and the Mustangs ball team were walkers and did an awesome job of covering the 1.7 miles on foot.
Opening ceremonies started with the American Legion Post 122 color guard posting the colors. Parade Grand Marshal Cal Cordes led the Pledge of Allegiance and Heidi Dahms Foster led everyone in the Star Spangled Banner. It was then a matter of "let the fun begin."
Parade judges Mayer High Principal Jeff Duncan and Mayer Fire Chief Glenn Brown declared Church on the Hill first place for its musical float; American Legion Post 122 second; and High Desert Heritage Museum third. The walk-a-thon tied with Dee Bryant and Roger Phelps, who was represented by his daughter, Regina.
The Friends of the Library had a booth with used books for sale and their new container for "Drop Your Change Here." The library uses the money for various programs.
The children's game area was busy throughout the day, including storytime with Miss Tina. The cake walk was very popular, with not too many of the cupcakes making it home. Games for the younger set included ducks on a pond and bean bag tosses, along with the ever-popular bounce house.
The dunk tank was very popular, especially when Mayer High School football coach Rick Lashley took the seat. He quickly was dunked, and didn't get much time to dry off. County Supervisor Tom Thurman urged the crowd to try to dunk him, which they succeeded in doing rather frequently. Jack Bennetto wasn't quite as voluble, but that didn't stop the crowd as Mark Thomas managed to dunk him more than once.
The Ghostriders captivated the audience with their Wild West skits. Each one was different, but each ended with the bad guys stretched out on the ground. The tables and chairs under the shade of the big tree were a perfect setting for the Beer Garden, which was fenced in and allowed only the over-21 crowd. Jim Porter and Jim Scott provided music in between events, and also had Randy Weaver assist in singing. A few dancers took the floor.
Vendor tables had an abundance of varied items from fantastic wood cut-outs to Avon, knitted caps, jewelry, hand-made whistles, and more. The Cordes kitchen was open with hot dogs, sloppy joes and chicken sandwiches so they could cater to just about any food restrictions and tastes.
Lee Digges was the auctioneer for the auction of the Arcosanti Bell which was won by Mary Seppala, who also won the raffle for the flat screen TV and Blue Ray player. Jim Long wasn't present for his win of the rifle. Our thanks to Moses Felix for pulling the winning tickets from the jar. Anice Grant won two southwest paintings and Les Jensen took home a western package of bola tie, belt buckle, lighter and seven books.
A highlight of the day was when Cal Cordes' talked about Old Cordes and the current Cordes Lakes. Cal said his brother Henry didn't mind the new area being called Cordes Lakes as long as they had the Lakes behind Cordes. Cal stated his grandfather immigrated from Germany and arrived in the Mayer area in 1883. When in Prescott, he was a puddler, which is someone who mixed mud for brick. The existing old Cordes, which was known as Antelope Station was purchased with $100 down. He became a sheep herder and had from 25,000 to 30,000 sheep that were moved to the Glendale area in winter and to Flagstaff/Winslow in summer. Henry was responsible for many of the sheep stops between the Cordes area and Flagstaff. Henry put in for 13 claims and worked them prior to when the road came through. The Highway Dept condemned the existing station, bar and cafe, then razed it. Henry sued and then was able to build the service station, bar and cafe that used to be across from McDonalds. Cal is still very active at 85 and volunteers with Good Samaritan, Prescott High School, city recreation with the softball association.