December 4, 2004 issue

So much poverty, so many smiles
Lions and tigers and…kids, oh my! Okay, so maybe they’re not the exact words Dorothy and company uttered while traversing the yellow brick road, but they might have been. If, that is, the gang had tagged along with Kyrene Corridor dentist Dr. Kelly Cook last August during a big-game safari hunt in South Africa.

By Melissa Hirschl

Holiday Shopping Guide
Gift-giving, with style

Be prepared to be beguiled, enchanted and very, very intrigued with this year’s holiday gift guide. If you can’t find something irresistible in our selection, you probably don’t have a pulse--and you definitely shouldn’t be out shopping. 

Compiled by Melissa Hirschl

Techno Files...with Riley Gay
And for the techies among us...
It’s beginning to look a lot like that time of year again. You’re making a list (and checking it twice) in hopes of finding the perfect gift for everyone on it. Happily, your neighborhood retailers are more than willing to help you find it.

Discerning Diner...with Elan Head
Warm up with a cup of home-brewed cocoa

For the five months that comprise the Valley’s summer, a container of Valrhona cocoa powder in my pantry goes virtually untouched. Once the weather reaches some facsimile of winter, though, it’s on my counter almost every day—in service of that best of cold-weather beverages, hot cocoa.

Sports Notebook...with Brian Gomez
Corona bounced in early exit from volleyball playoffs
In a quick but painful ousting that cast a shadow on a third straight Central Region title, Corona was eliminated from the Class 5A state tournament last month after suffering a 25-12, 25-20 loss against Gilbert.

Playoff run sets stage for next season
Corona del Sol High School football coach Gary Venturo could second-guess himself until he’s orange in the face. It won’t do much good. He might as well look toward next season. After all, there’s no shame in that, considering what his team accomplished this year.
By Brian Gomez  

Holiday candles: Enjoy them, but please be careful
Over the past 10 years, candles have become more popular than ever. According to the National Candle Association, an estimated $2.3 billion worth of their members’ products are purchased annually in the United States. That’s a lot of wax in the age of electricity.
Unfortunately, however, the number of residential candle fires has increased in proportion to candle sales. In the last 20 years candle fires have risen 750 percent, accounting for more than 13,000 house fires each year.

By Mark Moorehead

Chandler among best U.S. bike cities
Chandler is one of only 29 communities around the country to attain the bronze-level designation and one of 44 nationally to be recognized for its bicycle-friendly attributes.

By Matthew Garcia

Marketing prof named Arizona’s best of year
Amy Ostrom, assonate professor of marketing in the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University, has been named Ar9izona Professor of the Year by the Council of Advancement and Support of Education (CASE) and the Carnegie Foundation for the Advancement of Teaching.


Film Fare...with Mark Moorehead
The Machinist

Hitchcock-like psychological thriller about a man wrapped up in a ball of confusion, paranoia and guilt. Will keep you guessing until the end.

Screen gems...with M.V. Moorhead
DVD: The Butterfly Effect
This lurid metaphysical melodrama is bursting with feverish angst, horrific plot twists and its own brand of flaky illogic. But it isn't dull, and it's at least as unintentionally funny as My Boss's Daughter was unintentionally unfunny. It has the potential to become a kitsch classic.

Gift of toy pays off with free carriage ride at Casa Paloma
Shoppers at Casa Paloma Shopping Center, 7131 W. Ray Road, are being invited to give and receive this holiday season.

Glass artistry theme of free exhibition at Chandler Center
used-glass creator Alex Shaffer, glass blower David Vogt and fantasy-bead designer Nancy Pilgrim—all Arizona-based artists—will be featured in a colorful journey through a whimsical world of glass coming to town next month.