Gas firm can assist low-income users

Southwest Gas has a special discount rate for low-income households, the natural gas company said in a release.

The Low Income Ratepayer Assistance program offers a 20 percent monthly discount on the first 150 therms of gas usage each month, "which can be a significant savings during the coldest months of the winter," the release said. The LIRA program is available Nov. 1-April 30.

In addition to a discounted gas rate, LIRA includes a reduced monthly basic service charge of $7.50.

Assistance is available to any Southwest Gas customer in Arizona whose total household annual income does not exceed 150 percent of the federal poverty level. For example, a family of two can qualify if their total household income does not exceed $21,855. The maximum total household income for a family of four must not exceed $33,075.

Natural gas customers can call Southwest Gas at 1-877-860-6020 to see if they qualify for the Arizona Low Income Ratepayer Assistance program. Additional information may be obtained at

First aid, CPR classes at  Northwest

Northwest Fire/Rescue is offering basic first aid, basic cardiopulmonary resuscitation and health care provider CPR classes in November and December.

The schedule is:

Basic First Aid — Thursday, Nov. 5, 6-10 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 3, 6-10 p.m.

Basic CPR — Thursday, Nov. 12, 6-10 p.m.; Thursday, Nov. 19, 6-10 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 10, 6-10 p.m.; Thursday, Dec. 17, 6-10 p.m.

Health Care Provider CPR — Saturday, Nov. 14, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.; Saturday, Dec. 12, 8 a.m.-1 p.m.

All classes are held at Station 30, 1520 W. Orange Grove Rd. Class space is limited, and people must register in advance, a release said.

Registration fees for the First Aid and Basic CPR classes are $20 for district residents and $25 for those living outside the district. Health Care Provider CPR is $25 for district residents and $30 for those living outside the district. Registration fees are nonrefundable.

Call Northwest Fire Life Safety Services at 887-1010, extension 5000, for additional information.

Whyde new president of SAHBA

Jessica Whyde has been named president of the Southern Arizona Home Builders Association.

"SAHBA represents a major economic force in our community," said interim president Art Flagg, who announced the appointment. "We will be looking to Jessica for innovative ideas to help our members navigate the ever-changing home building industry."

Whyde, a graduate of Sahuaro High School in Tucson, earned degrees in business administration and economics at Western State College in Gunnison, Colo. She has nearly 15 years experience in corporate leadership positions, including work with Boeing; a partnership at Vaco, LLC in Tucson; ownership of a consulting firm; and management of the nationwide settlement services division of First American Title in Santa Ana, Calif.

Most recently, Whyde worked to reactivate the Tucson Chapter of the American Society of Women Accountants, a professional not-for-profit networking organization. Whyde is currently president of the chapter's board of directors.

SAHBA is a non-profit trade organization representing more than 650 member businesses and 20,000 jobs in the residential construction industry in Pima and Cochise counties.

Arts, crafts fair at HH this Sunday

For the fifth year, the Heritage Highlands community on Dove Mountain holds its annual arts and crafts fair this Sunday, Nov. 8, from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The event takes place in the clubhouse at Heritage Highlands, where all rooms are filled. More than 50 vendors are selling jewelry, pottery, gourds, holiday decorations, quilts, bath and body products and much more.

Everyone who attends is asked to bring a non-perishable item for the Marana Food Bank. Last year, "we collected a whole truck load of food," a spokeswoman said.

There's also a raffle for the Arizona Cancer Center.

Specials are available at the Heritage Highlands Grille.

Kitt Peak has special 'MeteorMania' Nov. 17

Kitt Peak is offering a special "Meteor Mania" program to see The Leonid meteor shower on Tuesday, Nov. 17, from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m.

Guests can view "a spectacular meteor shower under the pristine dark skies of Kitt Peak," a release said. The Leonid is one of nature's "most spectacular cosmic shows."

Registration deadline for the November program is Friday, Nov. 13. Cost is $35 for adults, $25 for children ages 8-13, and $30 for Kitt Peak members.

To make a reservation, call 318-8726. For more information, go to

People should dress warmly. Parking will be provided at the picnic area, with guests shuttled to the mountain. Snacks and refreshments are served. Blankets and reclining lawn chairs are advised.

Kitt Peak National Observatory, featuring the world's largest collection of optical telescopes, is located 56 miles southwest of Tucson.

2 legislators 'arts heroes,' group says

Two Tucson area legislators have been named 2009 "arts heroes" by a statewide arts organization.

Rep. Nancy Young Wright, a District 26 Democrat, and House Democratic Policy Leader Steve Farley, a District 28 Democrat, were chosen because they played "key roles in supporting the arts and arts education issues during this year's legislative session," a release said.

"I'm honored to receive such special recognition," Young Wright said. "But the true heroes here are the teachers who make this happen every day in each classroom in Arizona. These programs and teachers build on children's abilities to creatively solve problems, sharpen their minds and be successful members of our communities."

Young Wright and Farley are receiving their awards Friday, Nov. 6, when the Tucson Symphony Orchestra presents its Patriotic Pops concert.

Indian fair at Saguaro West this Saturday

Native American craft demonstrators, dancers, musicians, and speakers gather again at Saguaro National Park for the ninth annual American Indian Heritage Cultural Fair this Saturday, Nov. 7.

The event runs from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Red Hills Visitor Center in the Tucson Mountain District (Saguaro West), located at 2700 N. Kinney Road.

Artisans from several Arizona native nations display their craftworks, share American Indian dances, and give insights into Southwestern native cultures, a release said.

Navajo and Acoma silversmiths, along with Tohono O'odham Nation basket weavers and wood carvers, demonstrate and display their crafts throughout the day. Some artisans will have their own crafts available for sale.

A special children's activity area features craft activities and demonstrations from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.  Traditional food will also be available for purchase.  Entrance fees for the park's Tucson Mountain District are being waived for this special event.

Saguaro's annual American Indian Cultural Fair is sponsored by the National Park Service, with financial support provided by the Western National Parks Association and the Friends of Saguaro National Park. For additional information, contact the Red Hills Visitor Center at 733-5158.

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