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Sedona Arizona news and information articles are presented on this page. Press releases, official notices, and news items involving the Verde Valley communities are included.

Sedona Arizona news also displays certain community meeting and special event notices. Most information regarding community events and festivals is listed on the Sedona Arizona Events page.

Sedona Recycles provides drop-off locations around the Verde Valley. They conduct recurring electronics and battery recycling events, and special events. Please visit the Sedona Recycles website regularly.

News items are displayed here for a period of time. Deletions occur when the news item becomes stale... or the event date is past.




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Sedona Arizona News and Information

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April 18, 2014



State Route 89A switchbacks to close for up to five weeks after Memorial Day


Closure north of Sedona necessary to safely perform repaving, rockfall mitigation work


PHOENIX — On arguably one of the most narrow and winding roadways on the state’s highway system, the Arizona Department of Transportation will soon begin a project that will restore the pavement along a three-and-a-half-mile segment of State Route 89A through the Oak Creek Canyon switchbacks.

Beginning on Monday, April 21, crews will start work on the $2 million improvement project that will repave the roadway between Pine Flat Campground and Oak Creek Vista overlook (mileposts 387-390). The project area is located in the Coconino National Forest midway between Sedona and Flagstaff, just north of the popular tourist destinations in Sedona and Oak Creek Canyon.

SR 89A SwitchbacksIn order to complete the work in safe and timely manner, a full closure of SR 89A through the switchbacks, which have steep grades with little to no shoulders, will be necessary for up to five weeks following the Memorial Day holiday and prior to the Fourth of July holiday (May 27 – July 2). While the closure isn’t expected to last more than five weeks, ADOT is offering incentives to the contractor to complete the work as quickly as possible, while focusing on safety and quality. During construction, access will be maintained for emergency vehicles.

During the first phase of the project from April 21 through May 22, a single-lane restriction during daytime hours will be required Monday through Thursday throughout the project length as crews begin preparations for a full closure of SR 89A. The roadway will be open, without lane restrictions, during the Memorial Day weekend, May 23-26.

Read more



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April 18, 2014

SoFA Staff


Climbing Lane Progresses


Starting Monday, April 21 crews will begin the milling and paving work on I-17 through the project. For the next two weeks, overnight work will require a single lane restriction in both directions and drivers are encouraged to allow extra travel times to reach their destination.

Work hours are from 8 p.m. to 6 a.m. and drivers can expect minimal delays.

During construction, bicyclists are not permitted through the project work zone as the shoulders along I-17 are closed.

This project is expected to be complete by the summer 2014.

The work zone will be clearly marked by temporary barricades and signage. ADOT advises drivers to allow additional time to reach their destinations and to proceed through the work zone with caution, comply with the reduced speed limit, and be alert for construction equipment and personnel.



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April 17, 2014

City of Cottonwood


City of Cottonwood fire restrictions begin 04-18-2014



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April 17, 2014

City of Sedona


Kids Photo Hunt and Hike at Sedona Wetlands Preserve


The City of Sedona Parks and Recreation Department invites you to get off the couch and enjoy nature during the Kids Photo Hunt and Hike at the Sedona Wetlands Preserve on Saturday, May 3, 2014 at 8:00 a.m.

Children ages 6 to 12 can take photographs and learn about the surrounding nature, and along with their parents can enjoy this unique hour-long guided adventure. The Sedona Wetlands Preserve is located at 19655 SR 89A between Sedona and Cottonwood.

A naturalist/guide from the Flagstaff Nature Conservancy will lead participants through the preserve while they search for a given list of items. Children are encouraged to learn about and photograph all the items on their list in order to complete a field journal. Each journalist must bring his or her own camera to use, however, journals are provided. After successfully photographing the items on the list, participants may develop their pictures and create an adventure field journal of their hike at home.

There is no fee to participate in Kid’s Photo Hunt and Hike, but there is a class maximum of 15 children. Please call the Parks and Recreation office at 282-7098 to reserve your child’s place in the class. For more information on this and other events, visit



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April 17, 2014

Verde Valley Medical Center


Verde Valley Medical Center News


Have you “Liked” the hospitals’ Facebook pages?

Verde Valley Medical Center's Community Care Network wins Amerinet Healthcare Achievement Award for Quality and Patient Care Delivery/Patient Satisfaction

Northern Arizona Healthcare an innovator in percutaneous coronary interventions safety

Free diabetes and heart health screenings in April

Primary Care Now Available Saturdays in Cottonwood



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April 16, 2014

City of Sedona


Multi-Use Space Available for Performance Artists and More


The City of Sedona Recreation Room located within Posse Grounds Park is available for rental through the Parks and Recreation Department. This 860 square foot room is ideal for birthday parties, Girl Scout troops, HOA/club/organization meetings, performance artists, or specialty classes. The space is available on a year-round basis for a nominal rental fee depending on the intended use.

The facility is near shaded picnic ramadas, a playground, a multi-use grass field, and has attached restrooms. The interior has linoleum flooring, air conditioning and heating, mirrored walls, a sink, tables, and chairs. It is within walking distance of West Sedona School and the Sedona Teen Center. Pricing for rentals is dependent on the nature of the activities and the organization in question (private party, non-profit, or for-profit).

Special attention has recently been given to performance artists needing an inexpensive space for practicing their craft. All performance artists need only pay the “non-profit” rate to reserve this space, which is $5 per hour with applicable key and room deposits that are refundable.

Though the Parks and Recreation Department utilizes this space throughout the year for seminars and workshops, there is still plenty of time available for private parties/rentals. If you have been searching for a space for your group, please call (928) 282-7098. Photos of this facility are available at



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April 16, 2014

City of Sedona


Sedona Citizens Connect Available on City’s Website


Earlier this year, the City of Sedona launched a new smartphone application, which allows Sedona residents to help improve their neighborhoods and the city by reporting non-emergency civic issues, such as potholes, flooding, abandoned vehicles, and loose animals. In addition, it is now available on the City’s website at On the homepage, click on the Citizens Connect button or go to the “I Want To” tab, “Report”, “Citizens Connect – Service Request.”

This mobile and online reporting platform is an incredible collaborative opportunity between the citizens of Sedona and the City. In addition, it will improve how the City delivers services to its neighborhoods.

Sedona Citizens Connect allows a user to capture a photo, video, or audio of the problem. The user then uploads the media, and along with GPS location information pulled directly from the device, submits a report directly to the City. Once a report is submitted, feedback is provided to the user based on the action taken by the department handling the report.

Using “Sedona Citizens Connect” allows the City to use technology to save time and money while improving accountability. In addition, the application verifies that the item being reported is within City boundaries. For instance, if there is a pothole outside the City boundaries, the GPS tracking service from the device the sender is using will identify the location of the issue reported and notify the sender.

Sedona Citizens Connect is free to download and use. To download App, search for “Sedona Citizens Connect.”

For questions, please contact Sherri O’Connor at 203-5032 or email



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April 15, 2014

City of Cottonwood


Verde Valley Leadership Needs Your Help


“Inspiring individuals to action” is the vision of Verde Valley Leadership, Inc., whose mission is to develop leadership skills, build community awareness and diverse influential networks. In the tradition of each graduating class leaving a legacy, Verde Valley Leadership’s Class VII is focusing its efforts on a Legacy Project in the Verde Valley, which is sure to make a difference. The Class is working with Cottonwood Parks & Recreation to install a shade structure over playground equipment at Riverfront Park. It will not only protect our children from harmful UV rays of the sun, but also protects the city’s investment of playground equipment.

Read more



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April 14, 2014

Coconino County Sheriff’s Office


Short Haul Rescue Person Injured While Canyoneering in Wilbur Canyon


Flagstaff, AZ; On April 12th at approximately 6:30 pm the Sheriff’s Office received a report of a SPOT beacon alert in the West Clear Creek area.  The owner of the SPOT beacon, a 45 year old male from Phoenix, was on a solo canyoneering trip in Wilbur Canyon.  A Department of Public Safety Air Rescue helicopter was requested to search the area while ground based search and rescue resources were responding.  DPS Air Rescue located the subject on a steep ridge where he appeared to be stranded on a cliff. 

Search and Rescue personnel hiked into West Clear Creek and climbed up to the patient on the ridge while another team hiked to an area on the rim above the subject.  At approximately 2:30 am the team above the subject made voice contact and determined that the subject was injured.  He had apparently fallen 100-200 feet while canyoneering.  SAR personnel were able to climb to the subject’s location at approximately 4:00 am and provided initial care. 

Based on the subject’s injuries it was determined that a helicopter short haul rescue would be the best way to transport the subject out of the area to a waiting medical helicopter so that he could be transported to the hospital.  A short haul rescue involves the subject and rescuer suspended 150 feet below the helicopter and flown from the scene to a location where the subject can be transferred to another medical provider. 

At about 7:00 am the short haul rescue was completed with a search and rescue member as the short haul technician.  The subject was then transferred to Guardian Air Transport and flown to John C Lincoln North Mountain hospital in Phoenix for treatment of serious but non-life threatening injuries.



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April 14, 2014

Coconino National Forest


Midgley Bridge Trailhead Temporarily Closed


Sedona, AZ – The Midgley Bridge Trailhead and parking area will be temporarily closed for construction activity from Monday, April 21st – Friday, May 2nd.  A fenced enclosure will prohibit public access from 89A to the parking area in an effort to reduce risk and exposure to construction activities.  There will be no access to Wilson Canyon and Wilson Mountain Trails from Midgley Bridge.

During this closure, an accessible toilet will be installed and an accessible path will be built from the parking lot to the restroom.  As there was no toilet previously at the trailhead, this addition should assist in reducing pollutants from reaching the Oak Creek Watershed.  This work is possible through a grant received from the Oak Creek Watershed Council, administered by Arizona Department of Environmental Quality’s water quality improvement grant program. 

Plan accordingly during this time period if your recreation includes this area.

For more information concerning this project, please contact the Red Rock Ranger District at (928) 203-2900.



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April 13, 2014

City of Cottonwood


Easter Egg-stravaganza


The City of Cottonwood Parks and Recreation department is excited to invite you to this year’s annual Easter-Egg Hunt at River Front Park, April 19, 2014. All festivities are free to the public and will begin at 10 A.M. for all children ages eight and under, with age groups of 1 to 17 months, 18 to 35 months, 3-4 years, 5-6 years, and 7-8 year olds. This year’s event will feature over $2,500 of candy, food coupons, stuff animals, movies, and toy filled baskets! This event is made possible by all of our sponsors; Verde District Kiwanis Club, Cottonwood Youth Advisory Commission, Wal-Mart Super Center, Pizza Hut, Taco Bell, Sonic Drive-In, KC’s Family Tae Kwon Do, and, McDonalds.



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April 13, 2014



Stars Shine Bright and Red Rocks Glimmer in Verde Canyon


CLARKDALE, AZ and SEDONA, AZ and JEROME, AZ--(Marketwired - Apr 10, 2014) - What Sedona and the Verde Valley lack in traffic signals and street lamps, they trade in exchange for brilliant star shine bursting with galaxies and distant planets. City slickers enjoy an awestruck adventure stargazing beneath the summer sky in Arizona's remote Verde Canyon wilderness. A canyon cruise by moonlight via Verde Canyon Railroad has long been one of the train's most popular seasonal specials.

Departing during the cooler temperatures of late afternoon and traveling through sunset, twilight and starlight, Verde Canyon Railroad's Summer Starlight rides take place on May 17, June 14, July 12, August 9 and end with the season finale on September 6th. Departing at 5:30 p.m. and returning at 9:30 p.m., the evening excursion serves up a wide-ranging mix of light, color and shadow. As the moon crests the horizon the riparian wonderland and its native creatures are illuminated amidst an unforgettable dreamscape.

In addition to first-class and coach seating, the Starlight schedule also features two special event options: the Grape Train Escape and the Tequila Sunset Limited.

The Grape Train Escape is perfect for leisurely sipping of a variety of specially-chosen vintages. Each month highlights a different wine-growing region from across the globe, including Italy, New Zealand, South America, California and Washington State. A tasting flight of five wines includes special accompanying hors d'oeuvres to complement each selection.

The featured Tequila Sunset Limited distillery for 2014, Luna Malvada, will offer a selection of three premium tequilas, paired with inventive appetizers to complement each selection. The agave-distilled liquor can boast a complex sipping flavor suited to any snifter.

The train provides a peaceful sanctuary from the ordinary as it travels a leisurely four hours from the charming Clarkdale depot to the ghost ranch at Perkinsville and back. Awe-inspiring rock formations, historic trestles, ancient cliff dwellings and soaring raptors are just a few of the trip's many highlights. First-class cars boast plush seating, complimentary appetizers and a full-service bar. Coach offers vintage Pullman-style seating, panoramic windows and snack bars.

Passengers may toast "Cheers!" under the night sky, enjoying star gazing opportunities galore from the unique vantage point of the train's open-air viewing cars.

Just 25 minutes from scenic Sedona and 10 minutes from historic Jerome, Verde Canyon Railroad is located in the heart of Arizona's Verde Valley, named one of Lonely Planet's top 10 destinations. With sky above, water below, and heaven in between, Verde Canyon Railroad guarantees an unforgettable rail adventure.



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April 12, 2014

Yavapai County Sheriff’s Office


Recent Search and Rescue Incidents- Cell Phones a Critical Lifeline but those Rescued otherwise Unprepared


YCSO deputies and Search and Rescue volunteers have been extremely busy over the last few weeks helping lost and sometimes injured hikers out of various predicaments. Many involved in these rescues had already increased the risk of problems because they were hiking alone, did not carry adequate supplies, were not familiar with trail locations and topography, and began hiking just before dark. Fortunately though, they could rely on YCSO deputies and dedicated volunteers to bring them to safety. All were carrying cell phones which provided lifesaving contact with YCSO dispatchers and rescue personnel. Time is always a critical factor in such rescues. Without a working cell phone, these hikers would have likely experienced all night exposure in the desert and risk of serious injury or death.

These brief rescue overviews are shared in the hope others will not repeat the same mistakes.

April 4, 2014 – Around 9pm, deputies were notified of a lost 58-year-old California man on Cathedral Rock in Village of Oak Creek. The call originated from the man’s father in California who reported that his son called and said he was lost without food, water, or any supplies. Additionally, his son’s cell phone battery was almost dead. Very smartly, the father told his son to remain stationary and let rescue personnel come to him.

GPS coordinates were obtained from the hiker’s cell phone which placed the hiker near the top of Cathedral Rock. The Verde Search and Rescue (Verde SAR) team was called out and hiker’s vehicle was located in the Red Rock Crossing parking lot where a base camp was set. Just after midnight on April 5, Verde SAR found the hiker in good condition and very glad to see the professionals. Within the hour, the man was back to his vehicle heading to his hotel in Flagstaff.

April 6, 2014 – At approximately 7 pm, deputies were dispatched to the vicinity of Bell Rock in the Village of Oak Creek regarding a lost hiker identified as a 44-year woman from Grand Canyon, Arizona. She reported being lost and was trying to return to her vehicle before dark. She was out of water, but

wearing adequate clothing and did have a light source. The woman was directed to call 911 which would allow dispatchers to access GPS coordinates. Using this information and under the deputy’s direction, she was guided to the correct trail and arrived at the Court House Butte parking area just after 8PM. The deputy met her there, provided water and a ride back to her vehicle.

April 7, 2014 – Deputies were dispatched to Cathedral Rock in the Village of Oak Creek around 6:45 PM regarding two hikers, a husband, 58, and his wife, 57, who were lost. The couple, from Colorado, called in by cell phone. The wife had fallen into some cactus during their attempt to hike out and they could not find the trail, ending up near a cliff’s edge. The couple was directed to remain stationary.

The Verde Search and Rescue team was called out as deputies plotted GPS coordinates obtained from the cell phone call. The team obtained a verbal response from the couple around 9 PM as they attempted to reach their location. Just before 9:30 PM, the team made personal contact and was able to escort the couple to base camp arriving at 11:45 PM. Fortunately, no immediate medical attention was required.

Deputies noted the following – The couple was in no way prepared for such a hike. They were out of water, took no food, and wore light clothing and tennis shoes. When rescuers made contact, the female was shaking uncontrollably, her skin was cold and she had a difficult time moving. One of the Verde SAR members provided extra clothing allowing her to warm during the hike back to safety.



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April 9, 2014

Coconino National Forest


Sedona Business Paid Fine and Restitution for Illegal Activities on National Forest


Sedona, AZ - On October 25th, 2013, the Red Rock Ranger District was informed by representatives of the canyoneering community of an incident in a remote side canyon to Oak Creek. Investigators determined that a commercial business, Ropes That Rescue, conducted a week-long commercial outdoor training class September 21 – 27, 2013, which caused damage to the area.

An investigation determined that damage resulted from fires that were deliberately set as part of the training within the narrow canyon located in a part of the Red Rock Secret Mountain Wilderness that is also within the Oak Creek Research Natural Area. The canyon is home to rare plant and wildlife species and a sensitive riparian community.

Investigators determined that Ropes That Rescue had conducted a week-long commercial training on the Forest, sponsored by owner Reed Thorne who was present at the training. Ropes That Rescue does not possess a permit to conduct business activities on the Red Rock Ranger District and was charged with operating a commercial business without a permit and causing associated resource damage. Through an agreement reached between the United States Attorney’s Office, the United States Forest Service, and the defendant and with approval of the US magistrate judge, Reed Thorne agreed to a fine of $500 and $5000 in restitution for damages to the area.

Questions can be directed to Jennifer Burns, Recreation Staff Officer for the Red Rock Ranger District, (928) 203-7529. 



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April 8, 2014

Montezuma Castle National Monument


Native American Toys Highlight Junior Ranger Day at Montezuma Castle National Monument


CAMP VERDE, Ariz.—Have you ever tracked an animal or held a mountain lion skull? Do you ever wonder what it would be like to be a Park Ranger? Would you like to make your very own traditional cordage bracelet? Here's your chance! Montezuma Castle National Monument has special activities planned for Junior Ranger Day from 9am-3pm on the 19th of April. Activities are open to visitors of all ages. Special "Junior Ranger Day" certificates and buttons will be available upon completing a series of activities located at designated explorer stations along the 1/3-mile loop trail at Montezuma Castle National Monument.

An especially unique activity for the day includes Fred Kooyaquaptewa of the Hopi Bear Clan. Mr. Kooyaquatewa is from Second Mesa, AZ., and will be demonstrating traditional Hopi toys.  He began making and demonstrating Hopi toys when he was in his early teens. The artist’s specialty includes the making of playthings used before the introduction of modern plastic toys, including classic Hopi wooden tops and stickball games.   

National Junior Ranger Day is designed to encourage children and families to connect with parks in ways that engage them in exploring, learning, and practicing stewardship. There is no need to register. Simply arrive ready to explore, learn, and have loads of fun!

Junior Ranger activities will kick off National Park Week at Montezuma Castle, April 19–27, 2014. Entry fees will be waived at Montezuma Castle and all National Park Service sites April 19–20. Special programs are being held at national parks around the country. You can see what parks are doing throughout the National Park System by going to


Montezuma Castle National Monument is located at 2800 Montezuma Castle Road in Camp Verde, AZ. The monument is open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. every day except December 25. For more information, call 928-567-3322 ext. 0.



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April 7, 2014

City of Sedona


Sedona P.D. Taking Back Unwanted Prescription Drugs on April 26 at Sedona City Hall


On April 26 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Sedona Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its eighth opportunity in three years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Bring your pills for disposal to City Hall East parking lot at 102 Roadrunner Drive in Sedona. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.) The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

Last October, Americans turned in 324 tons (over 647,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at over 4,114 sites operated by the DEA and its thousands of state and local law enforcement partners. When those results are combined with what was collected in its seven previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 3.4 million pounds—more than 1,700 tons—of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.

DEA is in the process of approving new regulations that implement the Safe and Responsible Drug Disposal Act of 2010, which amends the Controlled Substances Act to allow an “ultimate user” (that is, a patient or their family member or pet owner) of controlled substance medications to dispose of them by delivering them to entities authorized by the Attorney General to accept them. The Act also allows the Attorney General to authorize long term care facilities to dispose of their residents’ controlled substances in certain instances.



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April 3, 2014

Sedona Recycles


News from Sedona Recycles



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March 31, 2014

City of Sedona


Parks and Recreation E-Newsletter


April Events

Pool Opening: The Sedona Community Pool is open for business on Saturdays, beginning April 5. Open from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. you can enjoy swimming laps or just playing around in the water. $2 for kids/seniors and $3 for adults. More information.

Dog Seminar: What is My Dog Saying at the Dog Park? Find out the answer to this question during a 3 hour seminar on April 2. Only $10 per person. Held at City Hall. More information.

Celebration of Spring: April 19 from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. This fantastic event has carnival rides, ponies, vendors, food for sale, an egg hunt and a scavenger hunt. Incredibly fun and affordable for only $2 for children 12 and younger. Tickets go on sale April 7 (in the Parks and Recreation office). Buy early so you don’t have to wait in line. See photos from last year’s event. More information.

Adult Softball League: Registration begins May 1 so start planning your team now. Two leagues this year for you to choose from: Recreation League and Competitive. Both leagues are $275 per team. Men and women welcome (men’s rules apply). More information.

Kid’s Photo Hunt and Hike: May 3 at the Sedona Wetlands Preserve. Children ages 6-12 years old may participate in this photo adventure through the wetlands preserve. A Naturalist for the Nature Conservancy will guide participants while they search for a given list of items. Each child must learn about and photograph all items on the list in order to complete their field journal. This is a free program. More information.



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March 30, 2014

Kaibab National Forest


Fire Danger High




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March 18, 2014

Coconino National Forest


Glass Containers Banned Along Oak Creek and Fossil Creek



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