Gilbert Edition – April 2022

GILBERT EDITION

VOLUME 4, ISSUE 8 APR. 12
MAY 9, 2022

ONLINE AT

Inflation hits home

Prices for urban-area consumers have spiked faster in the Phoenix area at 10.9% annually, compared to the 7.9% national rate, as measured by the Consumer Price Index for All Urban Consumers through February. However, experts said Gilbert’s higher-than-median incomes make more residents able to withstand the in•ationary pressures. Phoenix MSA Nationwide 10.9%

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IMPACTS

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+10.3% increase between Dec. 2020 and Feb. 2022

7.9%

2022 CAMP GUIDE LOCAL CAMPS

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6.1%

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4.2%

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Pandemic begins, 3.1%

1.9%

Lowest point: 0.6%

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SOURCE: U.S. BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICSCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Gilbert sees economic pinch alongwith rest of US Town watching ination, Federal Reserve Board as it prepares to issue bonds

HAIR OF THE DOG

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BY TOM BLODGETT

2.1% over January and February. Nonetheless, Gilbert’s businesses and government are relatively well positioned to withstand the current

response depending on the size of the business, the industry,” said Sarah Watts, Gilbert Chamber of Commerce president and CEO. “Overall, I think that many people still feel a sense of growth and prosperity.” For the town, ination has mixed eects, increasing revenue from sales tax while also increasing expenses associated with operations of town services, such as water and trash col- lection, o˜cials said. It also could mean bonds, like those from the referendum the town of Gil- bert passed in November, could grow more expensive to repay just as the town prepares to go out for $200 mil- lion in bonds for streets, transporta- tion and infrastructure.

Gilbert can point to a sterling employment recovery, but ina- tion and supply chain woes know no municipal boundaries and are aect- ing town business, experts said. Unemployment in town was down to 2.6% in February, and the number has been lower since September than it was before the COVID-19 pandemic, when it stood at 3.2%, according to Ari- zona Commerce Authority data. However, ination in February was at 10.9% in the Phoenix area, worse than the national 7.9%, according to the U.S. Labor Department. Accord- ingly, the Consumer Price Index—the average change over time in the prices paid by urban consumers for a market basket of consumer goods—was up

“I DON’T THINK WE’RE GOING TO BE INARECESSION THIS YEARORNEXT, BUT IT’S DEFINITELY ON THE RADAR.” JIM ROUNDS, ECONOMIST

BAGEL NOSH

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economic pressures, experts said. “Like everything else over the past two years, I think there’s a dierent

CONTINUED ON 14

Q&AWITH EDDIE COOK

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THIS ISSUE

ABOUT US

Owners John and Jennifer Garrett launched the rst edition of Community Impact Newspaper in 2005 with three full-time employees covering Round Rock and PŠugerville, Texas. We have expanded our operations to include hundreds of employees, our own printing operation and over 30 hyperlocal editions across three states. Our circulation is over 2 million residential mailboxes, and it grows each month with new residents and developments.

HIGHLIGHTS FROMTHISMONTH

FROMAMY: It’s only April, but summer (and the heat) is just around the corner. Another school year will soon be in the books. For those of you looking for something for your children to do, check out our Summer Camp Guide (see Page 9) for possibilities of all kinds—fun, active or educational. Amy Lawson, PUBLISHER

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FROMTOM: Gilbert’s unemployment rate has in recent years been ahead of the curve for the Phoenix area, even through the pandemic. But inŠation and supply-chain issues do not respect city boundaries much. This month our front- page story examines how the town and its businesses are aŒected by the current economic conditions. Tom Blodgett, EDITOR

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GILBERT EDITION • APRIL 2022

IMPACTS

Businesses that have recently opened or are coming soon, relocating or expanding

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Philadelphia Sandwich Co.

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TOM BLODGETT¥COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

TOM BLODGETT¥COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

E. WARNER RD.

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9 Manor will open in the fall at 3150 E. Ray Road, Ste. 188, Gilbert, in the Epicen- ter mixed-use development in Agritopia. It sells premium footwear, apparel and accessories for men, women and children. www.manorphx.com 10 Texas-based Mutts Canine Cantina will open its ˜rst Arizona location at SanTan Village mall, north of the Dillard’s in Gilbert, in 2023. It is an o•-leash dog park bar and grill with locations in Dallas; Fort Worth; and Allen, Texas; and has planned expansions in the Phoenix and Tucson areas; Denver and three more Texas cities. 11 Planet Fitness will open its fourth Gilbert location April 18 at 915 S. Gilbert Road in the Gilbert Warner development. The gym is running membership presales now. The 17,000-square-foot club will of- fer a variety of cardio machines, strength equipment, and Black Card Spa for PF Black Card members, including hydro- massage, massage chairs and tanning. 480-372-2555. www.planet˜tness.com 12 The Phoenix home goods store urbAna will open a location this fall in the Epicenter mixed-use development in Agri- topia at 3150 E. Ray Road, Ste. 162, Gilbert. It describes itself as selling curated luxury gifts, artisan decor items, party goods, entertaining decorations and designer furnishings. 13 Why I Love Where I Live , a Tucson- based resource center and shop, will open another shop in the fall at 3150 E. Ray Road, Ste. 148, Gilbert, in the Epicenter development at Agritopia. The shop sells a variety of products that are Arizona-themed in some manner, includ- ing accessories, books, cards, clothing,

also o•ers monthly memberships. 480-899-9109. www.trutanning.com COMING SOON 5 Advance Auto Parts plans to open a store near the northwest corner of Queen Creek and Higley roads in Gilbert. The nationwide auto parts retailer stocks new and remanufactured automotive parts, maintenance items, and accessories such as batteries and oil ˜lters for all makes and models. Construction has not started, and no opening date has been announced. 6 Bubbakoo’s Burritos plans to open a location at 2649 S. Market St., Ste. 104, Gilbert. This will be the ˜rst Arizona fran- chise of the fast-casual Mexican eatery out of New Jersey, which is undergoing a rapid expansion from 67 stores in 10 states to 93 stores in 17 states. Customers can choose the type of entrée, the protein and the toppings. No opening date has been announced. www.bubbakoos.com 7 Contender eSports Gaming Center expects to open a center at 888 S. Green˜eld Road, Ste. 104, Gilbert, likely in June or July. The center will have 47 PCs, ˜ve Xboxes and 12 Nintendos with a variety of games and will host tourna- ments. 480-818-6197. location/gilbert-az 8 L’Mage Salon Studios will open a lo- cation at 1422 W. Warner Road, Ste. A-102, Gilbert. It o•ers high-end salon spaces for rent from a locally owned company that has 10 Phoenix-area locations. No opening

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E. RIGGS RD. NOWOPEN 1 Café Morning Buzz opened March 17 at 2540 S. Val Vista Drive, Ste. 107, Gilbert. The locally owned restaurant has a scratch kitchen specializing in traditional breakfast dishes and serves craft cocktails, mimosas E. HUNT HWY. and has a bloody mary bar. It also will serve dinners on weekend evenings. The restaurant replaces the Val Vista location of Eatalio Pasta & Wine. 480-398-8529. www.morningbuzzgilbert.com 2 Nails Creation opened March 1 at 743 S. Lindsay Road, Ste. 104, Gilbert. In addition to nails, it does permanent eyebrow makeup, lash extensions and

HUNT HWY. dipping powder. 480-813-5988. www.facebook.com/nails.creation.gilbert 3 Philadelphia Sandwich Co. entered into a partnership March 4 with Flying Bassett Brewing at 720 W. Ray Road, Gilbert, to provide the kitchen service at the brewery. Customers can dine in at the brewery or order for takeout. The eatery provides hot and cold sandwiches, signa- ture appetizers and desserts. 480-207-0699. www.facebook.com/ philadelphiasandwichcompany 4 Tru Tan opened March 28 at 2540 S. Val Vista Drive, Ste. 111, Gilbert. It has traditional UV beds and o•ers spray tans, red-light therapy and teeth whitening. It

date has been announced. www.lmagestudios.com

Specializing in Advanced Cataract Surgery and Glaucoma Care Personalized Care by One Doctor Trent Bowen, MD Board Certied Ophthalmologist Please Call for an Appointment at (480) 590-2039 1760 E. Pecos Rd, Suite 201, Gilbert, AZ 85295 • saguaroeye.com

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TODO LIST

April-May events

COMPILED BY TOM BLODGETT

APRIL 12 THROUGHMAY 07 TAKE INANAWARDWINNING MUSICAL ON LOCAL STAGE “The Music Man,” the six-time Tony Award-winning musical, comes to Gilbert with a story about a fast- talking salesman, posing as a boys band organizer, and the no-nonsense librarian who sees through him. The production is in revival on Broadway. 7:30 p.m. (Wed.-Sat.), 4 p.m. (Fri.-Sat.). $26-$42. Hale Centre Theatre, 50 W. Page Ave., Gilbert. 480-497-1181. www.haletheatrearizona.com 20 CELEBRATE THE EARTHAT TOWN’S ARBOR DAY Gilbert will mark Earth Day and Arbor Day with a number of activities, including recycling-inspired crafts and games; upcycled, recycled and repurposed do-it-yourself ideas; a tree-planting ceremony; live animal display; vendor booths; prizes and giveaways. 10 a.m.-noon. Free with no registration requirement. McQueen Park Activity Center, 510 N. Horne St.,

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Tru Tan

Planet Fitness

TOM BLODGETT¥COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

TOM BLODGETT¥COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

APRIL 1225

SEE DISPLAY OF GEMS, MINERALS

games and toys, hats, holiday items, home goods, jewelry, stickers and items for kids. www.whyilovewhereilive.com RELOCATIONS 14 Brown Chiropractic & Acupuncture moved to a new location March 1 at 1772 E. Boston St., Ste. 107, Gilbert. The o¨ce formerly was located at 3451 S. Mercy Road, Ste. 101, Gilbert. It o•ers chiroprac- tic and naturopathic services, medical and laser acupuncture, massage therapy and a number of products. 480-377-1226. www.brownchiro.com ANNIVERSARIES 15 Batch Cookie Shop celebrated its ˜rst anniversary April 9 at 1495 N. Higley Road, Gilbert, in the City Gate development. The family-owned shop makes gourmet cookies and does cater-

ing. 480-818-6454. www.batchcookieshop.com RENOVATIONS

HD South is presenting an extensive selection of gems and minerals from the Southwest region. Each object is on loan from the private collection of mine engineer, geologist and Gilbert resident Les Presmyk. Presmyk has served on town committees and Town Council in addition to his professional activities. The exhibit is included in the price of museum admission. 9 a.m.-4 p.m. (Tue., Thu., Sat.). $3 (ages 5-12), $5 (age 60 and older), $6 (adults). HD South Museum, 10 S. Gilbert Road, Gilbert. 480-926-1577.

16 Flancer’s Incredible Sandwiches & Pizza reopened March 5 from a remod- el of the back of the house that closed the restaurant at 610 N. Gilbert Road, Gilbert, from Feb. 23. The restaurant o•ers gourmet sandwiches on fresh bread baked in house as well as salads, hamburgers, breakfast and pizza. 480-926-9077. 17 Liberty Market reopened its patio March 3. The American fare restaurant at 230 N. Gilbert Road, Gilbert, had been closed since Jan. 22 to conduct a remod- eling. The interior remains closed as the remodeling continues. 480-892-1900.

Gilbert. 480-503-6200. www.gilbertaz.gov/events

Find more or submit Gilbert events at communityimpact.com/event-calendar. Event organizers can submit local events online to be considered for the print edition. Submitting details for consideration does not guarantee publication.

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GILBERT EDITION • APRIL 2022

REGIONAL PROJECTS

TRANSPORTATIONUPDATES

COMPILED BY TOM BLODGETT

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ONGOING PROJECTS 1 Val Vista Drive/Eastern Canal bridge repair Crews will reconstruct the bridge deck on Val Vista Drive and the Eastern Canal. Status: Construction was still awaiting a permit from water and electric public utility Salt River Project to start. It will impact trac. Timeline: March-August 2022 Cost: $2.89 million

3 Val Vista Drive intersection improvements

areas are covered with steel plates during o›-work hours to protect the work zone. Timeline: September 2021-September 2022 Cost: $6.16 million Funding source: town of Gilbert 5 Recker/Warner roads reclaimed water vault Crews are constructing an enhanced reclaimed water vault at the intersection of Recker and Warner roads to eliminate the need for sta› to stop trac several times a week to operate valves in the intersection. Status: Construction is in progress as work continues on a trac-control plan approval to switch trac from the median lane to the curb lane. Coordination with the developer’s project on the north side of Warner is necessary for the switch. The developer’s delayed completion schedule has pushed the project completion back to April. Timeline: November 2021-April 2022 Cost: $715,000 Funding source: town of Gilbert

E. BASELINE RD.

The town is modifying intersections to improve safety of left-turn lanes and traf- ”c congestion. The next three intersec- tions scheduled for the improvements are on Val Vista Drive at A Guadalupe Road, B Elliot Road and C Ray Road. Status: Design on those three intersec- tions is complete. Construction at Val Vista and Elliot was completed in March. Construction at Val Vista and Ray started March 15. Trac is reduced to one lane each way near the intersection. Timeline: January-May 2022 Cost: $8.23 million Funding sources: town of Gilbert, state grant 4 Tankersley water line replacement The project replaces and upgrades the water mains, individual water services, and ”re hydrants of the former Tanker- sley Water System in the area generally located between Green”eld and Higley roads and Pecos and Frye roads. Status: Pipeline construction in 164th Street from Fairview Street to Frye began in March. Testing of the water line in this area is expected to take place the week of April 18. Roads remain open during this work; however, a šagman may be in place to assist in managing trac or providing access during the work activity. Trenched

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East Germann Road is being widened to six lanes. The project also includes Lind- say Road improvements between Loop 202-Santan Freeway and 1/4-mile south of Germann. Status: The project will continue the construction work on Germann through the end of May. The last phase of construction on Lindsay will begin the middle of June with an expected project completion date of July pending material availability. Timeline: October 2020-July 2022 Cost: $27.43 million Funding sources: town of Gilbert, Marico- pa Association of Governments, develop- er contributions

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ALL INFORMATION ON THIS PAGE WAS UPDATED AS OF APRIL 4. NEWS OR QUESTIONS ABOUT THESE OR OTHER LOCAL TRANSPORTATION PROJECTS? EMAIL US AT GILNEWS¥COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM.

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

TOWN&EDUCATION

News from Gilbert, Gilbert Public Schools, Higley USD & Chandler USD

COMPILED BY TOM BLODGETT

MEETINGSWE COVER Gilbert Town Council April 12, 26 • 6:30 p.m. 6860 S. Power Road, Gilbert 480-503-6871 • www.gilbertaz.gov Gilbert Public Schools Board April 26, May 3 • 6 p.m. 140 S. Gilbert Road, Gilbert 480-497-3300 www.gilbertschools.net Higley USD Board April 20 • 5 p.m. 2935 S. Recker Road, Gilbert 480-279-7000 • www.husd.org pro-rated for part-time employees. HIGLEY USD Open enrollment is now available for all families interested in the district’s early childhood development preschool. Among other programs, it oƒers Mandarin, Spanish, and gifted programs. CHANDLER USD The board approved March 30 a project to give all schools in the district a standardized public-address system for announcements. The upgrade to a standardized system would allow technicians to learn one system and ensure every school will have the same announcement system quality. SCHOOLHIGHLIGHTS GILBERT PUBLIC SCHOOLS The governing board unanimously approved March 29 proposed raises for all levels of employees plus a retention stipend for next school year. The raises start by taking 3% stipends the employees received this school year and making them part of the employees’ ongoing base pay, then giving them 2% raises from the adjusted base pay. Additionally, employees who remain for the year will receive a retention stipend of $1,500 for full-time employees, Chandler USD Board April 13, 27 • 7 p.m. 1525 W. Frye Road, Chandler 480-812-7000 • www.cusd80.com Follow us on Twitter: @impactnews_gil

Mayor, leaders look towhat is next in State of Town

GILBERT Mayor Brigette Peterson took some of the town’s leaders on a victory lap and looked ahead to what is next in her State of the Town presentation March 24 at the Higley Center for the Performing Arts. The town used #whatsnextgilbert as the theme this year, with Peterson giving a few introductory and closing remarks wrapped around a series of presentations from town leaders. In particular, Peterson highlighted the town’s €nancial successes, marking accomplishments without having a primary property tax as most municipalities do. “Our town also provides more services for the lowest cost than any city in the region,” she said. “It’s often di…- cult to describe to people just how €scally responsible and successful we are, but my dedication to e…ciency today and to the future will not change.” Among the successes highlighted were the introduction of the town’s ambulance service and the €rst graduating police class from the Public Safety Training Facility.

Mayor Brigette Peterson looked ahead in her State of the Town remarks. (Courtesy Gilbert Chamber of Commerce)

The look-ahead included a possible victims advocacy center; a larger public safety dispatch center; a police crime lab; the updated master plan for Gilbert Regional and Desert Sky parks; road projects to be funded under the streets, transportation and infrastructure bonds; and plans to expand the town’s €ber broadband infrastructure.

Council gives OK to CARES Act spending GILBERT Gilbert Town Council approved using federal COVID-19 relief funding on employees’ health insurance premiums and building a natural-gas •eet maintenance facility. Council approved both uses of Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security funding on 5-2 votes. Aimee Yentes and Laurin Hendrix dissented. The town will transfer $2 million in remaining CARES Act funds from the general fund to the self-insured health trust fund for town employees to help o›set COVID-19-related costs and transfer $1 million from a capital improvements program contingency fund to upgrade the South Area Ser- vice Center Fleet Maintenance facility.

Gilbert High School adding accelerated middle school to campus for next school year

GILBERTPUBLIC SCHOOLS Gilbert High School is shifting from serving grades 9-12 to grades 7-12 with the addition of an accelerated middle school program for next school year. The Gilbert Public Schools govern- ing board unanimously approved a resolution March 29 requesting the Arizona School Facilities Board agree to a reduction of space at Gilbert High for 9-12 instruction with the space being reallocated for the “Middle Years” program. Superintendent Shane McCord said the district hopes the change will result in increased enrollment at the school and allow for full use of

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the Gilbert High facility. According to the resolution, stu- dents will gain access to the instruc- tional expertise of high school- and college-level faculty. They will be immersed in an honors and accel- erated curriculumwith access to all resources of a comprehensive high school, while in a supportive cohort of other seventh- and eighth-grade students.

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GILBERT EDITION • APRIL 2022

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

2022

C A M P G U I D E GUIDE

A noncomprehensive list of camps in the area

COMPILED BY TOM BLODGETT

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6 Kindercamp fromGilbert Public Schools keeps a low sta˜-to-student ratio with special- ized instructors for the many age-appropriate activities that will be o˜ered to keep a child’s body active and mind stimulated throughout the summer. Every week, each campus will have a special theme, water day and an in- house „eld trip. Ages: 35 (toilet trained) Dates: June 2July 20 Cost: $50 registration, $40 per day, $180 per week DAY A Spectrum Elementary School 2846 SpectrumWay B Oak Tree Elementary School 505 W. Houston Ave. C Augusta Ranch Elementary School 9430 E. Neville Ave., Mesa D Highland Park Elementary School 230 N. Cole Drive E Finley Farms Elementary School 375 S. Columbus Drive 4808929089 www.gilbertschools.ce.eleyo.com 7 The Phoenix Suns basketball camp provides boys and girls, from beginners to advanced players, one-on-one instruction in a safe, positive atmosphere to learn about the game, hone skills, and learn tips and tricks from experienced coaches with a certi„ed athletic trainer present. Ages: 617 Dates: June 2024 Cost: $350 SP DAY Williams Field High School 2076 S. Higley Road 6025942267 www.nba.com/suns/kids/jr-suns- basketball-camps 8 School of Rock music camps range from beginner camps to intermediate and advanced sessions. The camps include performance boot camps, artist-themed camps, songwriting and recording, and more. Most music camps end with the campers performing a live show. Ages: 718

9 VIK (Very Important Kids) summer campers will get to go on one „eld trip and swim day per week. While on campus they will participate in many activities that will encour- age learning, friendships, team building and keeping active in a fun, hands-on group setting. Campers will explore topics such as science, arts and crafts, active games, sports, cooking, team building, computers and free play. Grades: 15 Dates: June 2July 20 Cost: $50 registration, $40 per day, $180 per week DAY A Spectrum Elementary School 2846 SpectrumWay B Oak Tree Elementary School 505 W. Houston Ave. C Augusta Ranch Elementary School 9430 E. Neville Ave., Mesa D Highland Park Elementary School 230 N. Cole Drive E Finley Farms Elementary School 375 S. Columbus Drive 4808929089 www.gilbertschools.ce.eleyo.com 10 The Zone for tweens and teens has activities that include age-appropriate sports/ active games, cooking classes, team building, team and individual challenges, iron chef, arts and crafts, computers and more. Grades: 68 Dates: June 2July 20 Cost: $50 registration, $40 per day, $180 per week DAY Mesquite Junior High School 130W. Mesquite St. 4808929089 www.gilbertschools.ce.eleyo.com 11 USA Youth Fitness Summer Camp is planned with daily nonstop activities in the gym. The camp includes a variety of activities throughout the day and week, such as tram- poline, dance, obstacle courses, group games, special guests and weekly themes. Ages: 512 Dates: May 30July 22 Cost: starting at $65 per day SP DAY USA Youth Fitness Center 1530 S. Gilbert Road 4809261480

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Parents looking for camps for their children have a number of options to choose from in the Gilbert area. This list is not comprehensive. A+ Academics ART Arts DAY Day SP Sports

E . O C O

Gilbert 1 Center Stage Academy camps include three weeklong performance camps, vocal training, singing activities, acting coaching, improv activities, casting and scripting, the- ater jazz choreography and an end-of-week production. Ages: 516 Dates: June 625 Cost: $170 (ages 56), $215 (ages 716) ART 2335 S. Lindsay Road, Ste. 102A 4804660642 www.centerstage.academy 2 Dragon Camp will feature daily martial arts and weapons training, animal-themed days, a „eld trip to Bowlero and a water day „nale. Ages: 512 Dates: June 610 and June 26July 1 Cost: $250 SP DAY Gilbert Defense Arts 1094 S. Gilbert Road, Ste. 107 4808557586 www.gilbertmartialarts.com/summercamp 3 Engineering for Kids Phoenix Metro is holding STEAM camps on various topics from nutrition science to astronomy camp. Full-day, half-day, weekly sessions and extended care are available. Grades: K9 Dates: May 31July 29 Cost: varies by session, starting at $165 weekly E. HUNT HWY.

A+ A Quartz Hill Elementary School 3680 S. Quartz St. B Main Event Gilbert 1735 S. Santan Village Parkway 4807571281 www.engineeringforkids.com/phoenix-metro/ programs/camps 4 Higley USD Kids Camp provides quality care that is designed to highlight creative expression and promote physical and social development. Registration opens at the end of April. Ages: 3 (potty trained)-12 Dates: June 1July 22, 6 a.m.-6 p.m. Mon.-Fri. Cost: $40 daily DAY Gateway Pointe Elementary School 2069 S. Delatorre Drive 4802797055 www.husd.org/kidsclub 5 Kidz Kamp, the town of Gilbert’s day camp, o˜ers a variety of music activities, games, arts, crafts, music and science projects. Children are asked to bring a sack lunch, water and two snacks to camp each day. Ages: 513 Dates: May 30July 24 Cost: $175 weekly DAY Freestone Recreation Center 1141 E. Guadalupe Road 4805036202 www.gilbertrecreation.com HUNT HWY.

E. RIGGS RD.

Dates: May 30July 29 Cost: $500 per session ART DAY 885 E. Warner Road 4806327625 www.schoolofrock.com/music-camps

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GILBERT EDITION • APRIL 2022

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10

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

BUSINESS FEATURE Hair of the Dog

BY BECCA SMOUSE

Pet-loving couple celebrates bar’s anniversary of serving beer, wine and coee to Gilbert locals W hen Randy and Marleen Duren set out to start Hair of the Dog, they

as well as its wine. The Durens wanted to create a place where dogs were not only welcome, but also encouraged. The couple has two golden retrievers and a Great Dane, and those dogs will occasionally make an appear- ance at the shop. Randy Duren said this has helped create the unique community atmosphere, atypical for a bar. “We’re de’nitely a family-friendly happy-hour spot where people can come to relax,” he said. The majority of the o‰erings are sourced locally from around the state, including the beers, co‰ee, sodas and snacks. “We wanted to be Arizona-fo- cused and Arizona-centric,” Duren said. “We wanted to

Drinks on tap 24 beers on tap, 20 varieties of wine by the glass and 100 beers to go

had one goal in mind: to create a dog-friendly bar that specializes in high-quality drinks for morning, noon and night. Randy Duren said the shop was a product of his job uncertainty due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Inspired by a friend who owned a tap house in the East Valley, the Durens took the plunge to build their own spot on Pecos and Lindsey roads. “It’s been an adventure,” Randy Duren said. The bar, which features an indoor and outdoor space, is adorned with comfy sofas and lounge chairs. It caters to furry friends, o‰ering dog bowls, dog beds and dog-friendly sta‰. “We do a better beers on tap and is typically pouring 20 di‰erent wines a night. It also o‰ers lattes, chai, espresso, cold brew and hot co‰ee service, which came at the request of Marleen Duren, who wanted a non-alcoholic menu option. Randy Duren said a major driver of business is orders on the go. The shop o‰ers 100 di‰erent beers available for purchase to take home job of remembering our customers’ dogs’ name than their names,” Duren joked. The shop o‰ers 24

Co-owner Randy Duren opened Hair of the Dog with his wife, Marleen, a year ago.

PHOTOS BY TOM BLODGETTCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

DOGGONE GOOD TIME Here is what customers can expect at Hair of the Dog: Community events

Themed trivia nights, live music performances by local artists, and rotating food trucks and yoga are all o‰ered throughout the year. Private events Guests can reserve the tap house for special events and community gatherings. Ciders/meads Mesa’s Cider Corps and Prescott’s Superstition Meadery provide rotating selections. Yappy hour Hair of the Dog’s happy hour.

Hair of the Dog has a variety of beers available for to-go purchase.

have the boutique vibe that supported our immediate economy.” Duren said the bar likes to keep its social calendar full. It o‰ers regular trivia nights, live musical perfor-

“WE’RE DEFINITELY A FAMILYFRIENDLY HAPPYHOUR SPOT WHEREPEOPLECAN COME TORELAX.” RANDY DUREN, CO OWNER

Augie is a frequent customer of the bar with his family.

Mon.-Thu. 2-6 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

mances, food-truck appearances and even dog-speci’c events. It also welcomes reservations for private events at the bar. Duren said business has been great, and he hopes the bar will be able to expand its hours to become an around-the-clock spot. “People feel at home here,” Duren said.

Hair of theDog 3133 S. Lindsay Road, Ste. 107, Gilbert 480-219-5489 Hours: Mon.-Thu. 2-9 p.m., Fri. 2-10 p.m., Sat. noon-10 p.m., Sun. 10 a.m.-7 p.m.

E. PECOS RD.

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GILBERT EDITION • APRIL 2022

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12

COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

DINING FEATURE

BY BECCA SMOUSE

THREE DISHES TO TRY 1 Turkey Avocado Club ($9.99) Bacon, lettuce, tomato and provolone is served here on a chongo bagel, an everything bagel with cheese. 2 French toast bagel with honey walnut cream cheese ($4.99) Other available spreads include peanut butter, jelly, butter, Nutella, cinnamon sugar and honey. 3 Arizona Classic ($7.49) A breakfast sandwich with scrambled eggs topped with meat and cheese on a freshly made bagel of choice.

1

2

3

PHOTOS BY BECCA SMOUSECOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Bagel Nosh Self-taught chef brings love for baking to Gilbert at breakfast-lunch café O wner Mason Sleiman, who has been cooking and baking for more than Sleiman’s own recipes. The self- taught baker said his personal favorite is the everything bagel.

butter and jelly or Nutella. The menu also includes break- fast and lunch bagel sandwiches. Sleiman says he tries to source his ingredients locally, especially his coŒees, to help support the community. As restaurants took a hit during the COVID-19 pandemic, Bagel Nosh stood strong. Sleiman credits the use of online ordering by his customers for keeping his business a€oat. “We expected [the pandemic] to be worse [for business], but thankfully, it wasn’t,” he said. Some Bagel Nosh customers travel across the Valley for the scratch-made goods, Sleiman said, and he has sights on opening more locations in the future.

Bagel Nosh 835 W. Warner Road, Ste. 109, Gilbert 480-507-8911 www.bagelnoshgilbertaz.com Hours: Mon.-Fri. 6 a.m.-2 p.m., Sat.-Sun. 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Owner Mason Sleiman (third from left) and his Bagel Nosh sta make more than a dozen types of bagels daily.

20 years, said it has always been a dream to work in the food business, particularly as a baker. He got his start making pizzas but soon found his true calling: bagels. Bagel Nosh on Cooper and Warner roads has been serving up fresh- made bagels for the past ve years. Bagels are the star on the menu with over a dozen varieties to choose from. The shop features traditional €avors, such as cinna- mon raisin and jalapeño, as well as some out-of-the-box options such as French toast and chongo, an everything bagel with cheese. All of the bagels are made from

“We make them fresh every day,” Sleiman said of his original bagel recipes. “We mix every day, and we bake every day.” Nearly every item on the menu is made in-house, including the croissants, danishes and muŠns, a customer favorite. The shop is also known for its unique cream cheese spreads, like the house-made roasted red pepper and honey walnut. “We are very creative with the cream cheeses,” Sleiman said. “We also bring out seasonal items.” Cream cheese aside, customers can choose from a variety of diŒer- ent bagel toppings, such as peanut

W. WARNER RD.

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13

GILBERT EDITION • APRIL 2022

In ationarypressures With wages up and in—ation running nationally at 7.9% and even higher locally at 10.9%, Watts said businesses have had to reassess their price points quickly. “I hear about it very regularly that they’re responding by increasing prices, and they’re doing, in some cases, substantial increases,” she said, citing a payroll company that had to double its cost of payroll processing to cover costs. For the town, in—ation is more of a mixed bag in terms of how the town can handle it, Gilbert Budget Director Kelly Pfost said. “There’s some of the town’s revenue that automatically adjusts and some that doesn’t,” she said. “For example, in our general fund sales tax, as the price of goods increases, sales tax automatically adjusts with that in—ation. …We get a little bit more revenue, and we’re able to use that to o“set the costs of goods that we’re seeing [from] the in—ation on our expenditure side. So that stays more balanced.” But it is di“erent with the town’s enterprise funds, such as water or environmental services, Pfost said. Unlike a business, the city does not

Unemployment Dropping

cover open positions, with some even changing plans to retire or phase out because of the employment shortage. “The other conversation right now that I hear more and more often is the talk about employee retention and how to balance bringing on new hires at what seems to be an increasingly competitive wage, while also accom- modating those who have been in their company for several years and have been loyal through the last years of hard times,” she said. Economist Jim Rounds, president of the Rounds Consulting Group in Tempe, said employment data has some discrepancies from how work has changed during the pandemic with more people freelancing and foregoing traditional employment. “The same person might be working there [at a business], but the person is working as a freelancer,” he said. “Now the business won’t be counting that person, but when you ask the person in a di“erent survey, they say, ‘Yeah, I’m still working.’ So, there’s some weird- ness in the employment numbers, and I always discount them when they show something too extreme because the peoplewho do the counting are still trying to resolve this issue.”

Gilbert’s unemployment rate has recovered to better than prepandemic levels, though Tempe economist Jim Rounds cautions the statistics may not completely represent how people are working now.

10.4% Reduction between Apr. 2020 and Dec. 2022

Feb. 2022

2.6%

Dec. 2021 1.9% Aug. 2021

3.5%

Apr. 2021

4.5%

Beginning of pandemic

Dec. 2020

4.8%

Aug. 2020

5.1%

Apr. 2020

12.3%

Feb. 2020

5.0%

SOURCE: ARIZONA COMMERCE AUTHORITYCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

CONTINUED FROM 1

cautioned that for local employers, employment still can be challenging. “Across the board, when I talk to our members, there is a sense of concern for workforce,” she said. That is particularly true in the ser- vice industry, Watts said, in which the number of youth available to ll some jobs, as once happened, has decreased as they stay busy with extracurricular activities outside of employment. Watts said she has seen some own- ers or managers have to work more to

Employment ‘weirdness’ The size of Gilbert’s labor force was in line with what it was prepan- demic in February, standing at about 145,000 employees, and was more than 150,000 for the rst time in the seasonally high employment months of November and December. Unem- ployment even dipped below 2% in December, according to data from the Arizona Commerce Authority. Even with those numbers, Watts

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COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER • COMMUNITYIMPACT.COM

have the ability to quickly change revenue sources to correspond with expenses. “Our utility rates don’t automatically adjust with in—ation,” she said. “We have to do a rate study and public hearings and consciously change the rate from one thing to another. And so we have to be more mindful of that.” Rounds said the economic outlook for the area is favorable but that it bears watching with a war going on in Ukraine and in—ation at home. What the Federal Reserve Board does to address in—ation could be critical, he said, as well as if Congress ramps down spending too quickly, he said. “I don’t think we’re going to be in a recession this year or next, but it’s denitely on the radar, and it’s worth talking about,” Rounds said. With that in mind, Rounds said people may want to prepare for the possibility of a mild recession. Amore severe one would require additional “shocks,” he said. “Gilbert’s in good shape because it has higher incomes,” he said. “It’s been a well-run town for a while, and I don’t expect things to change signicantly. I feel like there’s enough income in the area where it’s supporting the higher in—ation, the higher cost of retail and other things like that. The incomes have been going up even though costs have been going up as well. That’s not the case with every community.” Upcomingbondsales However, one area in which the town might be a“ected by Federal Reserve Board action is its upcoming bond sales. Voters passed a $515 million streets, transportation and infrastructure bond package in November, though a legal challenge to the election is at the Arizona Supreme Court with a review that was scheduled for April 5. As of press time,

GLOSSARY Yield —The rate of return an investor gets on a bond Term —The time between a bond’s issuance and maturity Yield curve —A line that plots yields at di“ering terms AAA rating —The highest rating the bond agencies can give an entity for its investments, indicating highest creditworthiness; Gilbert has AAA ratings from all three major bond agencies

Federal Reserve Board (Fed) —The governing board of the Federal Reserve System, the United States’ central bank Prime rate —The rate of interest banks charge to their most creditworthy customers Bond rate —The rate of interest a bond issuer pays on the face value of its bond

Going out for Bonds

Gilbert would like to issue $200 million in municipal bonds before interest rates rise much more, as town o cials note they already have been rising. That is demonstrated on the AAA-rating municipal bond yield curve from the end of 2021 against the week of March 25. Bond rates as of March 25, 2022 Bond rates as of Dec. 31, 2021

3.0 2.5 1.5 2.0 0.5 1.0

0

1

3

5

7

9 11

13 15

17 19

21

23

25

27

29

Term in years

SOURCE: RAYMOND JAMESCOMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

a decision had not been reached. Assuming the town clears the legal hurdle, it plans to seek Town Council approval to sell $200 million of bonds this year. At council’s nancial retreat in March, sta“ said each quarter-point increase in the municipal bond rate would cost the town $6 million in additional debt. Pfost said timing the bond sale is not a possible task, but the town will be watching what the Fed does. “The e“orts that they’re doing will be to raise interest rates,” she said. “When the town is looking to sell bonds, we would like to sell them before they rise, and they’re already rising right now.” At the retreat, some discussion challenged the notion that the Fed’s actions would denitely cost the town money.

Rounds said the town needs to implement public policy when it can and worry about nancial details later as renancing or consolidating debt can always be done. “Gilbert [policy] actually has been implemented pretty nicely, but infrastructure, for sure, and public safety—they can’t get behind on that kind of stu“,” he said. “When you get behind on infrastructure, it’s really hard to catch up because you’re dealing with such big dollar amounts.” Jared Roskelley, president and director of nancial planning for Jackson Roskelley Wealth Advisors in Scottsdale, said municipal bond rates, like all credit activities, do generally track with what the Federal Reserve does with its rates. In fact, the market already has risen in anticipation of Federal Reserve action, he said.

Roskelley noted that Gilbert’s AAA bonds rating means it will get the best rates as investors see the town as low risk. “At the end of the day, as a municipality, you have to go to the market and say, ‘please lend us money. At what rate of return is the minimum rate of return that we can pay you to get you to lock in money with us for the next 20 years?’” Roskelley said. “That’s really what it comes down to. Gilbert will be a great bond issue because they’re a great municipality. They’re growing. They have the resources as opposed to a much smaller town that doesn’t have those growth trends.”

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