Pfeifer: Encanterra should become part of Queen Creek

There are many small towns that are beautiful communities but not many can be called great. Before we explore what makes Queen Creek a great small town, I think we should ask ourselves what kind of a community are we and what do we in Encanterra hope to become?

What binds us together and what tears us apart?  Do we want to be part of one of Arizona’s great small towns or do we want to take our chances and stay like we are and hope we never get incorporated into San Tan Valley or annexed into another town?

What makes a small town great anyway? I’m no expert on great towns, but I have been around this planet for many years and have visited countless towns and cities. I was a planning commissioner and sat on state boards with multi-million-dollar budgets and have learned to appreciate the expertise and planning it takes to make a great town.

Here is what I think makes a great small town: The components of greatness are a cadre of dedicated citizens with creative ideas and the energy to implement them; a progressive government willing to meet them halfway; opportunities to get close to nature, arts and cultural programs to feed the soul; a desire to meet the challenge of building infrastructure such as roads and transportation; and meet the challenges of moving towards renewable energy and at the same time protect the environment.

Sounds like a big order to fill, but doesn’t Queen Creek come pretty close in most areas?:

  • Outdoor activities abound: Being close to outdoor adventures (or within reasonable drive) such as jogging, biking or visiting one of the many trails, and access to numerous golf courses are just some of the qualities Queen Creek offers.  Have you hiked the many trails, have you tried the bike paths?
  • Access to medical care: This is important for all residents, but especially for seniors and families with young children.  Banner Hospital right across the road and medical offices within a short drive is key for many people in various stages of their lives.
  • Great schools: Good schools are important for families with children. They make a town more valuable and more sought after, keeping property values strong.  Queen Creek offers an array of school choices from public and private.
  • Culture: The town of QC is a vibrant, thriving center of culture that offers a wealth of opportunities to engage in and experience the local community. You’ll find a ton of great options to choose from: restaurants, local artists, theater, local concert venues, clubs, festivals, parks and much more. There is no shortage of activities that can match your personal interest or hobbies.  What about the gorgeous views of the Superstitions and San Tan mountains? Queen Creek has demonstrated a strong will to preserve the town’s local heritage.  Its leaders are civic-minded and the town is full of high spirited “do-it-yourselfers.”
  • Convenience: The convenience of QC life is another point in its favor. You have everything within easy access via a short drive or even walking distance for some.  Have you spent an afternoon at the community theater?  Visited the many family friendly parks? Talked to any of the local artists?
  • Dining: Dining options in QC are both plentiful and diverse. Whether you’re looking for a coffee shop, a deli, or the best pizza in town – QC dining has it all.  Of course, there will always be the chains you know and love, but QC is diverse and offers Italian, Chinese, Mexican, Thai, Greek and many more.  There is just about something everyone will love.
  • Shopping: QC shopping presents a range of options. You’ll find the classic larger-brand stores to the smaller artisan craft shops all within a relatively small radius. You can get your groceries at your favorite big store or shop at a neighborhood market offering locally grown produce and other goods. Clothing options can be found at stores like Target or perhaps a small thrift store. Have you purchased fresh vegetables at a local farmers market? Visited the many local small businesses?  Shopped the dozens of boutiques and stores?
  • Low crime rate: Low crime rates like in QC give a town a sense of ease and calm. As safety and security are everyone’s concern, crime is a quick way to tell if a town is improving or not.
  • The future: The QC town leaders plan ahead and make thoughtful decisions while keeping an open mind and always think about what’s best for the future of Queen Creek and its citizens.

The town of Queen Creek has a rich history and there is something about an area with history that makes it desirable. QC is a perfect example of what a great small town can be.

We live in one of the most beautiful communities in Arizona. The choices we make today and, in the future, will determine the legacy we leave for future generations.

For my family, it’s an easy choice.  We want to be part of the great town of Queen Creek.

Merle Pfeifer
Encanterra resident

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