Special Announcements


Community Volunteers Needed

Portal is renowned not only for biodiversity and outdoor recreation, but also for the dedication of its residents to building and sustaining a vibrant community in which many of us work together for the benefit of all. Everyone has skills that can be put to good use while volunteering and connecting with new friends. So don’t hide out in your cabin alone in retirement; come join us! Many studies have shown that volunteering leads to a healthier, more fulfilling and longer life.

Here we list diverse volunteer opportunities, one or more of which will surely match your interests and abilities.

Planning and executing community activities

- Help to plan events like the Friends Garden Party and annual meeting, Portal’s Oktoberfest, Soup’s On (in February), the July 4th event, or Historical Society events.

- Set up and take down tables, or serve at one or more of these events or at memorial services.

- Help to plan programs and Forums for the Sew What Club.

- Help the Library organize donated books and music for sale.

  • Volunteer to help at the Library.

Are you an experienced cook?

- Contribute food (soup, bread, or dessert) to Soup’s On (a Portal Rescue

fundraiser), Oktoberfest (a Sew What fundraiser), FOCCC happenings, or other community events.

- Provide baked, canned, or other goods for sale and profit at a Farmer’s Market.

  • Bake a fancy cake for July 4th cake auction (proceeds to student scholarships).

Like the outdoors?

- Share your love of the area with visitors at the USFS Visitor Information Center managed by Friends of Cave Creek Canyon.

- Present your favorite natural history topic to kids visiting the Canyon, or to those at the Apache School.

- Help with periodic trail maintenance by Hiking Club members.

- Work to reduce brush at National Wildfire Preparedness events.

- Help to rid our surroundings of alien plants.

- Assist Friends of Cave Creek Canyon in the renovation of South Fork Road and parking and trailhead areas.

  • Help with habitat restoration at a premier birder’s destination ‐ Willow Pond.

Is gardening your thing?

- Grow veggies for our Farmer’s Market.

- Grow native plants for sale at the Friends Garden Party.

- Help maintain the native plant garden at the Visitor’s Information Center.

  • Donate seeds from healthy non‐hybrid plants to our seed library.

Do you have construction skills?

Tell us what kind of skills, and help with maintenance of the Portal Rescue

facilities (including classroom) or the Library.

Interested in health care, or just helping the ill and disabled?

See Our New Page On Home Health Care

- Volunteer with Portal Rescue, Fire‐fighter (FF), Radio Communications Operator

(RCO), or driver. Animas and Rodeo Fire Departments also need personnel.

- Run for the Portal Rescue Board, and even serve as an officer.

- Our new Hospice program (you may need it someday!) could use skilled nurses,

nursing assistants, and even folks willing to sit and talk with patients when

nurses are busy with other things.

- Could you help the ill and disabled with home services like meal preparation or

light house‐keeping?

Are you skilled at writing?

- Could you be Secretary of one of our many organizations? Pick an organization

and contribute in this way.

- How about writing and submitting relevant articles for the annual Portal Rescue

newsletter or the monthly Friends of Cave Creek Canyon, newsletter?

  • Choose one of our local organizations and consider helping with grant proposals.

Interested in politics?

- Revive the former Sew What Candidates Forum, which brought together

candidates for local and state offices (and representatives from candidates for

national office) for non‐partisan ‘town halls’ in the PR classroom.

  • Help out with voter registration at local schools or the Cochise County Fair.

Organizational and business solicitation skills

- Help raise funds for Portal Rescue by putting together the next issue of our local

phone book, including business ads at the end of the book.

- Help raise funds for Friends of Cave Creek Canyon for the reprinting of the book

Cave Creek Canyon ‐ Revealing the Heart of the Chiricahua Mountains.

Computer skills?

- Could you help one or more organizations with website design and


So you thought you were useless in retirement? Think again! Some of our best and

most dependable volunteers are ‘aging out’ of volunteer activities, and the community

needs ‘new blood’ – maybe yours? Your community will be what you make of it. Join us in keeping our community vibrant by signing up for some volunteer activity today.


If You Encounter A Rabid Animal

Submitted by Dinah Davidson

If/when you encounter a suspicious carcass, or a live animal behaving aggressively or unnaturally, you should contact the Sheriff’s office (800-362-0812). Given an uptick in rabies county-wide, all carcasses of common target animals (skunks, foxes, coyotes, bobcat, coatis) are now tested for rabies. Unnatural behaviors include, e.g., a nocturnal animal out in daytime and displaying aggression or even just lack of fear.

Ask the dispatch officer for a call-back from Al - the USDA guy who handles these matters for all of Cochise County. Most of the following advice comes from him.

If it is not necessary to handle a carcass, then don’t do it. But if you handle a suspicious carcass, make certain to wear protective gloves and steer clear of the mouth, which may contaminate you with virus-infected saliva.

Any human exposed to rabies through a scratch or bitemustbe treated for rabies. Any exposed petmustbe quarantined, sometimes for as long as 4 months, and perhaps even if the pet has been vaccinated. An animal control person will conduct a visit to assess the situation.

(Information I found online: Thorough and immediate cleaning and treatment of a bite or wound area can significantly reduce the chance of infection, but such cleaning cannot replace treatment for rabies. First flush the area with water for at least one full minute. Follow up by washing with soap or detergent to remove saliva containing the virus. Then apply a disinfectant such as alcohol, bleach, or tincture of iodine directly to the wound and under skin flaps to stop the virus from being absorbed into body tissue. Finally, go immediately to your doctor or an emergency room.)

Al cautions that your best protection from rabies is to have your pets up-to-date on vaccinations, so that they don’t bring the disease back to you.

He also urges that no one feed animals like skunks, foxes, coyotes, or bobcat, because even healthy animals will behave aggressively if expecting food, and someone unfamiliar with the fed animal will not recognize this behavior as something other than disease. As Al says, “a fed fox is a dead fox”; he will be forced to euthanize any animal reported as behaving aggressively. It is actually illegal in Cochise County to feed any animal the size of a coyote or larger.



Howard Topoff 2011