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Horizon senior outside hitter Taylor Johnson leaps high above the net for a kill attempt during the 5A state volleyball final Nov. 13 at Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Phoenix.

Horizon volleyball sweeps Millennium in dominant 5A final display

This trip to the 5A girls volleyball final was far different for Millennium than the previous three. In 2018 and 2020 the Tigers were the overwhelming force, sweeping their way to state title.
The Liberty defense, including Keaton Stam (far right) and Jax Stam (8), swarmed Brophy players all night en route to a 21-9 victory on Nov. 5.

4-year Liberty starter Stam remains student of the game

At this point the first Liberty football game without Jax Stam will be, well, weird. Stam started at safety in the first varsity game of his freshman year and has not left the lineup since — …
The Northwest Christian boys and girls cross country teams pose for a photo after both won the Division IV state titles at Cave Creek Golf Course in Phoenix Nov. 13. It is the first championship in school history for both teams.

Northwest Christian doubles up on history with first boys, girls cross country titles

While the Northwest Christian Crusaders girls had every reason to expect they could grow into state champions this fall, the boys team was a bit more of an unknown quantity. Yet the boys team grew during the offseason, and joined the girls in winning their first team title in school history.
O'Connor linebacker Brevin Czosnyka leans in to tackle Mountain Ridge junior tight end Conrad Curley during the rivalry game Nov. 12 at O'Connor.

O'Connor grounds, then pounds, rival Mountain Ridge

The O'Connor defense allowed the first points of the night in its home rivalry game against Mountain Ridge, a field goal  with 4:06 left in the first quarter. This dominant unit did not allow …
Sunrise Mountin won its regular season finale

2021 West Valley Preps Week 12 football scoreboard

Games Nov. 11 4A #21 Northwest Christian (3-7) 42, #19 Greenway (5-4) 20 Games Nov. 12 (last night of regular season) 6A #4 (#6 Open) Liberty (8-2) 42, #18 Centennial (3-7) …
Phoenix Metropolitan News

On the road again: Travelers emerge in time for Thanksgiving

DALLAS (AP) — Determined to reclaim Thanksgiving traditions that were put on pause last year by the pandemic, millions of Americans will be loading up their cars or piling onto planes to gather …
Hikers descend a trail on Piestewa Peak northeast of State Route 51 and Lincoln Drive in Phoenix. The city is making permanent a pilot program tested during the summer to close trails on Piestewa Peak and Camelback Mountain during the hottest hours of the hottest days of the year. [Submitted photo/Phoenix Parks Department]

Phoenix moves to close select trails on hottest Valley days

Phoenix will continue to close some of the city’s most popular and most dangerous hiking trails during midday on the hottest days of the year, making permanent the policy from a pilot program …
Catholic Charities is collecting toys, clothes, books, hygiene products and more gits for kids and teens for its annual Emergency Santa program.

Catholic Charities collecting toys, gifts, clothing for Emergency Santa program

Catholic Charities Community Services is now collecting toys, books, clothing and hygiene products to help struggling families give their children gifts for the holidays.
The exterior of Cibola Vista Resort & Spa, one of nine hotels in the city of Peoria.

Wanted: West Valley hotel developments

When COVID-19 hit Arizona, the state’s robust tourism and hospitality industries were the hardest hit. But Arizona leaders say tourism is on its way back in a big way, and there’s a tremendous need for additional lodging to house all the visitors flocking to the Valley.
President Joe Biden speaks about COVID-19 vaccinations after touring a Clayco Corporation construction site for a Microsoft data center in Elk Grove Village, Ill., Thursday, Oct. 7, 2021. (AP Photo/Susan Walsh)

Phoenix-area businesses uncertain about vaccine mandate

Uncertainty looms over whether some Valley businesses will be held to a standard by a federal vaccine mandate that requires workers to get vaccinated or get weekly tests by Jan. 4. On Tuesday, the …
Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg told a news conference Friday in Phoenix that the federal government is prepared to help fund local transportation solutions.

Buttigieg visits Phoenix to sign grant for light-rail expansion, tout infrastructure bill

Light rail in metro Phoenix will get a funding boost from federal coffers, which is in addition to millions of dollars headed to Arizona under the infrastructure bill President Joe Biden signed this week.
Caroline Maloney stands outside HonorHealth’s Scottsdale Osborn Medical Center at the end of her overnight shift early Friday, June 26, 2020, in Scottsdale. Nurses are in high demand across the Valley, with the cost of travel nurses skyrocketing.

Valley hospitals grapple with skyrocketing cost of travel nurses

In a normal year, hospitals have no problem staffing their halls with travel nurses to fill in gaps or prepare for the busy winter months. But 2021, much like the year before, has not been a normal year for the health care industry.

Cost of Thanksgiving: a few items actually cheaper in 2021

PHOENIX — For those of you who thought the Thanksgiving feast this year would break the bank, there's some good news. Prices are up. But not as much as you might have thought. The latest …
A person is vaccinated with the Pfizer vaccine against the coronavirus and the COVID-19 disease at vaccination bus in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021. Germany battles rising numbers of coronavirus infections. (Kay Nietfeld/dpa via AP)

Arizona deemed among most unsafe states for COVID-19

A combination of lower vaccination rates and higher positive testing rates has made Arizona among the unsafest states regarding COVID-19, according to a new Wallethub report. Arizona ranked No. 44 …

Far-right personality charged with damaging Hanukkah display

PHOENIX (AP) — Far-right social media personality Tim Gionet, who calls himself “Baked Alaska,” has been charged with misdemeanors over allegedly damaging a Hanukkah display in December 2020 …
Valley Youth Theatre is normally gearing up for its annual holiday classic, "A Winnie-The-Pooh Christmas Tail," the Phoenix-based group will not put on the performance this year citing continuing concerns about the coronavirus pandemic.

Valley Youth Theatre stops current season over coronavirus concerns

Valley Youth Theatre isn’t heading back to the stage for its 2021-22 season until it ensure the safety of its participants amid the continuing coronavirus pandemic. The move comes after the …

13th Annual Festival of Trees returns on Dec. 3 at the Renaissance Hotel

The Greater Phoenix Equality Chamber of Commerce will be kicking off the holiday season by hosting the 13th Annual Festival of Trees at the Renaissance Hotel in downtown Phoenix on Friday, Dec. 3, …

ASU Fashion Journalism Club hosts charity show

The Fashion Journalism Club at Arizona State University will be hosting a semesterly charity fashion show called Chic in the City, 8 p.m. Wednesday, Nov. 17. Put on entirely by the college …
Laura Spalding Best ‘Adrift’  to open at Walter Art Gallery.

Solo exhibition of Laura Spalding Best ‘Adrift’ to open at Walter Art Gallery

The Walter Art Gallery, 6425 E. Thomas Road in Scottsdale, will present “Adrift,” a solo show of new oil paintings on found objects by Phoenix based artist Laura Spalding Best.

Brelby returns to live performances in Phoenix, Glendale

Brelby Productions (previously known as the Brelby Theatre Company) returns to live productions this month with a new iteration of its successful celestial fairy tale “Luna & Solis.”

Experts: WHO needs harm reduction to escape unsuccessful tobacco strategy

Tobacco kills roughly 8 million people around the world every year, mostly in low- and middle-income countries. The World Health Organization has long aimed for complete eradication of the substance, calling it “one of the biggest public health threats the world has ever faced.”

Expert: Biden taps the Strategic Petroleum Reserve — But what does that mean?

President Joe Biden ordered a release of oil from the U.S. Strategic Petroleum Reserve on Nov. 23, 2021, as a part of a coordinated effort with five other countries to tamp down rising fuel prices. The U.S. plans to tap 50 million barrels of crude oil in the coming months, while the other nations  — the U.K., India, Japan, Korea and China  — are said to be releasing about 11 million barrels in total.

Merrill: Get ready for winter; the first Arizona highways close in November

It seems like just weeks ago that Arizona was sweltering under one of the hottest summers on record, with many Arizonans seeking refuge in pools or under tall trees in high country. But those days are in the rearview mirror.

Llywelyn: Prayer apps are flooding the market, but how well do they work?

Hallow, a Catholic prayer and meditation app that claims over a million downloads, has raised more than $52 million in investments. Prayer apps are not new. Silicon Valley startups popularized mindfulness and meditation apps as early as 2010, although many have criticized those apps for being spiritually shallow.
Kyle Thompson volunteers with the Altar Valley Conservation Alliance.

Adopt a Highway: ‘All the Way to the Border’ welcomes volunteers for 45-mile cleanup along SR 286

January 2022 will mark the seventh anniversary of Melissa Owens’ annual celebration of sun, fun and litter. Owens has been a part of Adopt a Highway for more than 22 years and began collaborating with neighbors and the community for more involvement seven years ago. January 2021 was similar to previous years.

Rigler: How to keep foodborne illness from spoiling holidays

The holiday season that begins on Thanksgiving and continues through New Year’s means many things to many people. One thing it means to most of us is food. Meals and appetizers with family and friends help make the holiday season special. But there can be a downside to all that delicious food.

Experts: Space law unchanged since 1967 — but now the UN aims to update laws and keep space peaceful

On Nov. 15, 2021, Russia destroyed one of its own old satellites using a missile launched from the surface of the Earth, creating a massive debris cloud that threatens many space assets, including astronauts on board the International Space Station.

Navidad: Here's 4 reasons to consider adopting a senior pet in Arizona

Many older cats and dogs tend to spend more time in shelters waiting for their forever home compared to their younger furry friends. Most people come to the shelter wanting to adopt puppies, kittens or young adult dogs and cats.

Dickerson:: Give new life to a deserving Arizona pet for Adopt a Senior Pet Month

At the Arizona Humane Society, we care for and love each and every one of the more than 15,000 sick, injured and abused pets that walk through our doors each year. But, of course, we can’t help but have some that pull on our heartstrings just a tad bit more than others … this includes our beloved senior pets.

Shinkoskey: American freedom must be balanced by common sense

A lot of people today think it is not right to stop people from doing whatever they want to …
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