Category Archives: D5 Newsletters

District 5 Newsletter • November 2019

Thank you for signing up to receive my Council newsletter. As always, it is my goal to email you a monthly newsletter with information regarding current events and items that may be of interest to you. In addition, you can find me at www.facebook/district5councilmansanders for regular updates. Each month, I conduct a Facebook Live interview that highlights different businesses, institutions, and people in District 5. Be sure to tune in! You can always reach me at or 623.222.1325. Also, please feel free to visit my webpage at As always, it is my distinct honor to serve you.

Care and Share Expo

This collaborative effort between the Human Services & Community Vitality Department and the Surprise Veterans, Disability & Human Services Commission was an amazing success. This free community event provided information regarding numerous community programs at one, central location. I was humbled to see and meet so many of our community members.

Surprise Day of Service

Surprise Day of Service was held on Saturday, October 19. The Day of Service is a community clean-up and reinvestment event that is free to the neighborhoods served, and is organized with the intent to foster community pride. It includes painting, landscaping and removal of refuse.

It was impressive to see more than 300 volunteers assembled for this event! Thank you to all of our residents who participated! If you are interested in participating in future events, please register at 623-222-3241. Everyone is welcome!

Fiesta Grande

The 6th Annual Surprise Fiesta Grande event was nothing short of amazing. We were honored to welcome special guests Barry Wong, Executive Director from Governor Ducey’s Office of Equal Opportunity, as well as Deputy Consul General of Mexico Armando Esparza. This street-style celebration, held at the Original Town Site, celebrates our city’s cultural heritage. The event is always free, and it is a great way to spend time with your family. If you didn’t attend, I hope to see you next year!

Ottawa University

Ottawa University (OUAZ) has added two new buildings to their growing campus! The Student Union offers a cafeteria, indoor and outdoor dining spaces with a fireplace, Spirit Fan Shop, conference center, student lounge and designated quiet study spaces. The new Residence Hall has over 300 beds, four student lounges and a campus security office. Soon, the highly anticipated O’Dell Center will be open and will include five classrooms, recreation center, athletic center and much more.

Greater Phoenix Economic Council (GPEC) Fest

GPEC Fest is an annual event that provides the opportunity to meet and network with hundreds of leaders across the valley. I was fortunate to attend this event along with our Economic Development team as we celebrated our successful and collaborative relationship with GPEC.

Dysart College and Career Expo

Over 1,000 students, parents, and various community members attended this event. A variety of programs were presented including Dysart’s Career and Technical Education programs, business, military, local colleges and West-MEC.

G.A.I.N. Night

This free, family-friendly public safety event not only brings the community together but also contributes to a good cause. Many families were in attendance and enjoyed such things as laser tag, face painting and public safety demonstrations. I would like to thank everyone for donating cans of food for the Salvation Army. This is a great way to give back to our community.

West Valley Council Mixer

I would like to thank the City of Peoria for hosting the West Valley Council to Council Mixer at Scorpion Bay and providing a scenic, sunset cruise. These events provide a valuable networking opportunity for West Valley councilmembers.

WHAM Art Association

I recently met with Connie Whitlock, WHAM Art Association Executive Director, to discuss her ongoing dedication to the arts. WHAM is a 501(c)3 non-profit art organization that was founded in 2006 by Mrs. Whitlock. The organization has grown to more than 150 artists that work in a variety of different mediums. In addition to helping to promote local artists through exhibits throughout the West Valley, WHAM is also involved in numerous projects such as public art murals, art festivals, art walks, veteran initiatives and community art classes.

Councilmember Sanders and WHAM Art Association Executive Director, Connie Whitlock.

I really appreciate how that continues to help the community and Surprise residents. Connie, we thank you for all you do!

Homeowner Associations

I continue to meet with HOAs to provide updates. If any HOA would like me to attend, please contact the Council office at 623-222-1331, and I would be happy to facilitate the request.

Meet and Greet

I enjoyed meeting a number of you at my October Meet and Greet. My Meet and Greet events are held at Starbucks, 14369 W Bell Road, from 9:00-10:00 a.m. on the last Saturday of every month. Please feel free to stop by to introduce yourself and let me know if I can be of service to you!

Upcoming Events

  • November 11, 2019 – all City of Surprise offices will be closed in observance of Veterans Day
  • November 28-29, 2019 – all City of Surprise offices will be closed in observance of Thanksgiving
  • December 6-7, 2019 – Annual Surprise Party celebration, Surprise Recreation Campus

District 5 Newsletter • October 2019

Thank you for signing up to receive my Council newsletter. As always, it is my goal to email you a monthly newsletter with information regarding current events and items that may be of interest to you. In addition, you can find me at www.facebook/district5councilmansanders for regular updates. Each month, I conduct a Facebook Live interview that highlights different businesses, institutions, and people in District 5. Be sure to tune in! You can always reach me at or 623.222.1325. Also, please feel free to visit my webpage at As always, it is my distinct honor to serve you.

Ottawa University Football

City Council attended the first Ottawa University home football game on Saturday, September 7, against Western New Mexico. The stands were full and school pride was dominant. The Spirit have only two home games left, October 19 and November 2. I hope to see you there soon! Also, be sure to check out my Facebook Live interview with Ottawa Head Football Coach, Mike Nesbitt. What a great coach!

Fire Station 304

As the City of Surprise continues to experience growth in the northern area, a permanent fire station is necessary. The current developer plans indicate construction of over 17,000 new homes and the current temporary facility is not equipped to support this growth.

Fire Station 304 will be the largest station in Surprise with a total of 18,000 square feet. It will be complete with multiple bays which will accommodate a number of different service vehicles. The new addition to the Surprise Fire-Medical Department will be completed in the fall of 2020.

Mayor Hall and Surprise City Council hold shovels to break ground at the Fire Station 304 groundbreaking ceremony.

Eve’s Place Drive for Survivors

I was honored to participate in the fundraising event for Eve’s Place on Sunday, September 15. The City of Surprise regularly partners with Eve’s Place. They even have a satellite location at our Surprise Resource Center. This non-profit organization provides assistance to victims of domestic, sexual and teen dating abuse.

Constitution Day

I had a great time attending Constitution Day at Canyon Ridge Elementary School. The celebration included Freedom: A History of the United States Traveling Exhibit. Seventh grade social studies classes performed in costumes as Founding Fathers and Mothers, while offering details on colonial life and the importance of America’s seminal documents. Thank you Canyon Ridge for another year of outstanding work displaying your patriotism.

Ribbon Cutting

SeaCa Plastic Packaging held their ribbon cutting on Wednesday, September 25. SeaCa Packaging is owned by Seattle Tacoma Box Company, which has been a family owned and operated business for over 125 years. They produce quality wooden, plastic and corrugated shipping containers. We welcome this new addition to Surprise.

Peace Pole

The Rotary Club of Surprise, in partnership with the Arts Commission, placed a Peace Pole at City Hall. The Peace Pole is a monument that displays the message, “May Peace Prevail on Earth” in the four most commonly spoken languages in Arizona: English, Spanish, German and Navajo. Thank you for this remarkable art piece.

Hollywood Night

Surprise Elementary School, in conjunction with Dysart Community Coalition and Saigon Kitchen, hosted a Hollywood Night Fundraiser. This event brought elected officials and residents together for a night of entertainment and fun.

Care and Share Expo

The Surprise Care and Share Expo is a free community event creating connections to human service organizations, health resources and medical checks. This is your chance for accessing programs and services that promote health resources, financial growth and self-empowerment. There will be fun events for the entire family! Please stop by the City Hall Courtyard, 16000 N. Civic Center Plaza, on Saturday, October 5 from 10:00-12:00 p.m.

Surprise Day of Service

The City of Surprise is searching for over 200 volunteers to participate in the Fall Day of Service on October 19. There are several indoor and outdoor community projects planned throughout the city. Volunteers are asked to meet at the Surprise Senior Center, 15832 N. Hollyhock Street, at 8 a.m. to receive their assignment; and should plan to serve until noon. Groups of 10 or more are required to register with their group name and estimated number of volunteers. Group leaders should contact Ervin Cutwright at 623-222-3241 to sign up. This is a great volunteer opportunity and all who participate are encouraged to attend an Island Party afterwards which will include food, music, games and more.

Sunday in the Park Food Truck Festival

The next Sunday in the Park Food Truck Festival is Sunday, October 20 from 4:00-8:00 p.m. at Mark Coronado Park, 15960 N. Bullard Avenue. This month, the family event will feature live music by Steven P. & Diversity Jukebox. Admission is free. As a friendly reminder, all dogs must be on leashes!

Public Safety G.A.I.N Night

Mark your calendars for Saturday, October 26 as Mark Coronado Park, 15960 N. Bullard Avenue, transforms into a family-friendly event. The Getting Arizona Involved in Neighborhoods (G.A.I.N.) event, hosted by the city’s public safety teams, will consist of a gaming trailer, dinosaurs, trick-or-treating and much more that will keep your kids entertained from 5:00-9:00 p.m.

Admission is free! Food and drinks will be available for purchase. If you bring two cans of food for the Salvation Army, you will earn a raffle ticket for a chance to win some prizes.

Memory Café

Beginning on October 8, the Salvation Army, 17420 N. Avenue of the Arts, will open the Memory Café. As part of Dementia Friendly Surprise, this café will provide a social and resource place for people living with memory loss and their care partners. The program is free of charge and no reservation is required. They will meet the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of each month from 9:30-11:30 a.m. For more information, please call 623-832-6637.

District 5 Newsletter • September 2019

Thank you for signing up to receive my Council newsletter. It is my goal to email you a monthly newsletter with information regarding current events and items that may be of interest to you. In addition, you can find me on Facebook for updates. Each month, I will be doing a Facebook Live interview that focuses on different businesses in District 5. You can always reach me at or 623.222.1325. Also, please feel free to visit my webpage at As always, it is my distinct honor to serve you.

Advanced Meter Infrastructure (AMI) Replacement Project

The City of Surprise has begun the process of replacing approximately 16,000 residential, commercial, and irrigation mechanical water meters with new automated meters. These new water meters will allow customers to monitor their water usage in real time, allowing them to set usage alerts and detect possible leaks. The new meters are completely funded by the City of Surprise water fund and will not impact customer rates. For more information, please visit

Arizona League of Cities & Towns Conference

I had the opportunity to attend, and represent Surprise at the annual Arizona League of Cities & Towns Conference, held in Tucson. While there, I was able to meet numerous representatives from across the state of Arizona while sharing ideas and best-practices on issues facing several cities across the state. We were also able to discuss similarities and differences between our individual cities and gain a broader perspective on a range of topics.

Governor Doug Ducey at the Arizona League of Cities & Towns Conference.

Recycling in Surprise

The City of Surprise has temporarily suspended its recycling program, due to soaring operational costs. Effective August 19, 2019, the city began diverting all materials to the landfill while staff continues to search for cost-effective solutions. In the meantime, the city encourages residents to continue their usual recycling habits, and would like to remind everyone that only bagged trash may go in the black container. If you choose to place recyclable materials in the black container, please continue to follow state regulation, and bag all the contents. For more information and a list of frequently asked questions, please visit

HOA Academy

The City of Surprise hosts an HOA Academy annually to give residents the opportunity to learn more about living in an HOA community or serving on a board. It also provides information on the laws that govern HOAs. Classes will be held Wednesday, October 16, 23, and 30, and November 6 and 13 from 6:00-8:30 p.m. in the Public Safety Building Auditorium. Space is limited, so reserve your spot today by calling 623-222-3242.

Hazardous Household Waste Collection

Following the success of the spring Household Hazardous Waste event, the city will continue with the scheduled appointment format. Residents will be able to book an appointment beginning September 9. Please keep in mind this is not a bulk trash appointment. For more information, as well as a list of acceptable items, please visit

Surprise Day of Service

The City of Surprise is looking for over 200 volunteers to participate in the Fall Day of Service on October 19. There are several indoor and outdoor community projects throughout the city. If you are interested in getting involved, please contact Ervin Cutwright at 623-222-3241. This is a great opportunity and all who participate are encouraged to attend an Island Party afterwards which will include food, music, games and more.

Facebook Live

Be sure to check out my Facebook Live videos on my Facebook page @district5councilmansanders. I am touring the city and interviewing the owners of local shops, restaurants and other places of interest. So far, I have interviewed the owners of Nothing Bundt Cakes, Firehouse Subs and My Goodies. I have also toured the new Ottawa Athletic Facility and interviewed a star football player. This month, I look forward to meeting new people in the community. If you know of a local place you would like to see, please feel free to contact me.


Sundays in the Park Food Truck Festivals are back! I hope you all take the opportunity to come to Mark Coronado Park on September 15 from 4:00-8:00 p.m. to enjoy the festivities. Sundays in the Park bring residents together to enjoy live music and delicious food from local food trucks that line the park.

Teens, gather your friends and form a team for a fun, competitive night of Bubble Soccer. This tournament will be held at Mark Coronado Park on Saturday, September 21 from 5:00-9:00 p.m. Games begin at 6 p.m. Residents are $10 each. More info: 623.222.2000.

The first movie night of the season will be held on Saturday, September 28 at 7:00 p.m. at Mark Coronado Park. Enjoy “Wonder Park” on the big screen with free admission. Food and drink will be available for purchase.

The West Valley Arts HQ will be hosting their newest exhibit from August 30 until October 4. Come out to the Arts HQ Gallery for Painting with Light; A Photography Exhibit.

District 5 Newsletter • August 2019

Thank you for signing up to receive my Council newsletter. It is my goal to email you a monthly newsletter with information regarding current events and items that may be of interest to you. In addition, you can find me on Facebook for updates. Each month, I’ll be doing a Facebook Live interview that focuses on different businesses in District 5. You can always reach me at or 623.222.1325. Also, please feel free to visit my webpage at As always, it is my distinct honor to serve you.

City Center Master Plan Community Meeting

Please mark your calendar for Thursday, August 8 at 6:00 p.m. as Mayor Hall and I will be hosting the first Surprise City Center Master Plan feedback session in the City Council Chambers at Surprise City Hall, 16000 N Civic Center Plaza. This meeting will allow representatives from the Surprise Center Development Company (SCDC) to present and discuss the City Center Draft Master Plan based on feedback provided by residents earlier this year. The plan includes concepts for possible land use, landscaping, water features, walkability and open spaces, themes, designs and much more. I hope to see you there!

City of Surprise master plan concept image.

Surprise Dog Park

The city’s Parks & Recreation staff has been working on improving the conditions at the Surprise Dog Park. Staff is currently in the process of developing and implementing a turf maintenance program which will be dedicated to improving the conditions over time. This will include top dressing, fertilizing and aerating the soil to relieve the compaction and provide oxygen to the existing plant below. It will no longer require over seeding the turf with winter rye.

City Council takes great pride in our parks, and we will continue to work with City management and staff to remedy the conditions and deliver the best possible dog park for our residents. I assure you that staff is working on these long term solutions.

Local Events

I had the privilege to attend “Lemonade with a Cop” hosted by Raising Cane’s on July 9. This event was an opportunity for residents to meet and talk to representatives from the Surprise Police Department.

Thank you to the entire Surprise Police Department for all they do to protect and serve our community. Thank you, Raising Cane’s, for organizing this family fun event.

City of Surprise Police Department and residents at Raising Cane's.

West Valley Arts Headquarters

West Valley Arts HQ held a great family event on Friday, July 12 for the opening of their newest exhibit, Bugs & Blooms, which is on view until August 22, 2019. West Valley Arts HQ is located at 16126 N. Civic Center Plaza. For more information, you can visit

Growth and Development

Ottawa University

Ottawa University’s O’Dell Center for Athletics is well underway. This indoor activity center is almost 100,000 square feet which includes a 30,000 square foot gym. It will also be the home of student lab classrooms and athletic department offices. The City of Surprise is looking forward to the opportunities this facility will bring to the community.

Councilmember Sanders and Assistant City Manager Mark Schott at Ottawa University's O'Dell Center for Athletics.

Texas Rangers Housing Complex

The Texas Rangers are developing a new player housing and development center across from the Surprise Stadium. The new facility will house players and team staff year round. Completion is scheduled to be prior to Spring Training 2020.

Mucho Burrito Grand Opening

Mucho Burrito, a fresh Mexican grill, hosted a ribbon cutting on July 11. They are located at 14345 W. Bell Road. Welcome to Surprise!

Oscars Taco Shop

Oscars Taco Shop has completed the permit phase and is looking to open their new shop at 16811 N. Litchfield Road.

Growing Minds Preschool

Growing Minds Preschool hosted a ribbon cutting ceremony and open house on Monday, July 8. The preschool, located at 17999 W. Surprise Farms Loop S, is welcoming children aged 2-5, and it will focus on core academic areas as well as the arts and athletics. Creative expression and physical play will be part of all the activities utilized to create a fun, hands-on learning environment. For more information on registration and tuition, please visit

Mayor Hall with Coucilmembers Sanders, Hayden and Winters at the Growing Minds Preschool ribbon cutting ceremony.

Road Work

Driving around the city can be a little frustrating while we diligently work to make our roads safer and more efficient. Waddell Road from Bullard Avenue to Litchfield Road is being widened, as well as Peoria Avenue from Cotton Lane to 175th Avenue. These projects are scheduled to be completed mid-September. A new traffic signal will be in place, by the end of the month, at the intersection of Cactus and Sarival.

Please keep in mind that utility companies have planned projects throughout the city during the upcoming months. The city works closely with these contractors to minimize traffic issues.


The Surprise Aquatic Center will host its last Dive-In Movie on Saturday, August 17. Gates will open at 6:00 p.m. with resident pricing of $5 per ticket. Come relax in the water and enjoy watching Dumbo on the big screen. Concessions are available for purchase and, as always, children must be supervised.

Sunday in the Park Food Truck Festivals are coming back! Beginning next month, residents will be able to hear live music and enjoy an array of food trucks at Mark Coronado Park. The first Sunday in the Park will be held on September 15 from 4:00-8:00 p.m.

Monthly Community Meetings

I am launching monthly community meetings to create additional opportunities to meet with you and answer your questions.  These meetings will be held on the last Saturday of each month at various times and locations. This month, I hope you will join me Saturday, August 31 at 8 a.m. at the Starbucks located at 14369 W Bell Road.

District 5 Newsletter • July 2019

Councilmember David Sanders July Newsletter
July 1, 2019

Business Spotlight

For my very first business spotlight, I interviewed Robert Kelly of Nothing Bundt Cakes, a local business in Surprise. This is a great, local bakery we have right in our backyard here in District 5. Robert Kelly and I had a great discussion on a variety of topics. Following are the highlights of our discussion:

Q: What drove you to start your business in Surprise?

A: We had wanted to start our business in Surprise since 2014 and had started our search at that time. However, we felt that the community wasn’t ready for our brand at that time. There was a lot of turmoil with the Highway 60 overpass under construction, and we couldn’t find the right consumer energy. When Prop 206 was passed by the voters in 2016, this delayed things as we had to find out how guests were going to handle the increase in costs and resultant prices. So we waited until we felt the time was right and then started our location search again early last year. We feel the Surprise market is now a diverse and growing community and we look forward to many years of bringing smiles to our many guests.

Q: What helped your passion of owning a bakery?

A: My wife, my sister-in-law and I have all had long careers in the health care industry. In fact, my wife just recently retired from her “real job” as a nurse at Mayo Clinic. We’ve always been in a career focused on the public benefit, but let’s face it, health care is a challenging environment and can be very stressful and takes an emotional toll. At the same time, all three of us have always been “foodies”, the girls are both fabulous and often experimental cooks… and I love to eat good food. So when Donna and I were finally burned out on our health care careers, we started looking for a business opportunity in the food industry where we could combine our passion for good food while making people (our guests) happy. There is also a funny “circle of life” story to this for me personally as the first job I ever had as a young teenager growing up in Northern Ontario, Canada was baking bread in my mother’s kitchen and selling it locally to make some money. Baking was my first career and will be my last.

Q: What is your professional or personal motto? Why this particular motto?

A: I don’t have any specific catchphrase or documented motto per se, but I would say, if pushed to put my beliefs or ideals into words that goal is to help make the lives of our employees better and help make our communities a better place to live through excellence of the service and products we provide. We believe if we do this, our personal success will be automatic. “Sharing happiness and success, one cake at a time.”

Q: How has the growth been since opening here in Surprise?

A: Simply put, we have been blessed. We opened in mid-February with certain expectations based on the openings of our other two locations in the West Valley. We immediately realized, we needed to hire more team members because the Surprise location was markedly busier that either of the other two locations first years. Since that readjustment of expectations, we have had steady growth. Of course, like pretty much all retail businesses in the Phoenix Valley in the summer, sales have dropped off after Father’s Day as the snowbirds have left and school is out so families start leaving for summer vacations. We expect this and know that come late August into early October, it starts ramping up again. We always use the summer for implementing new programs for operations or training or renovations/repairs as needed.

Q: Where do you see Nothing Bundt Cakes in one year? Five years?

A: As a brand, we continue to grow, dramatically expanding all over the country and that growth hasn’t slowed down at all. This is significant to local owners like us because it creates greater and greater awareness and, in our case, trust due to the very high standards we demand in our products and service. Combined with our local efforts in marketing and our community involvement, we expect to have grown by 20% next year and 80% by 5 years.

Q: What are you looking forward to seeing in Surprise as a small business owner?

A: For many years, the West Valley communities, especially in the northwest part of the valley, have been seen only as retirement communities. Such a community can become stagnant in growth and diversity. We currently see, and hope to continue to see, much more diversification in our Northwest Valley…. More primary industry and employment which leads to greater diversification in our demographics which leads to greater business employment and opportunities, which leads to better tax revenues for our cities, which leads to better community services, planning and development…etc. We feel that Surprise, and the surrounding area is finally on this positive feedback loop and as a small business owner, this is fabulous.

Q: How many employees do you have here?

A: Including full-time and part-time team members, our roster is currently at just 13 for the summer. As we move into the fall and with our continued growth, we will be back in hiring mode again and by November we should we at about 17.

Q: What’s your favorite baked good here?

A: For me, a huge part of eating enjoyment is texture. I love food that has different textures that you can enjoy with your teeth. For this reason, my favorite flavors of our cakes are our Pecan Praline Cake and our Carrot Cake. The pecan cake is loaded with a praline mixture we make of chopped pecans, brown sugar and spices while having a crown of chopped pecans such that every bite should have some bit of crunch. We don’t put nuts or raisins in our carrot cake but the crushed pineapple and julienned carrots give great texture.

Q: Tell us why people should get a bundt cake from Nothing Bundt Cakes?

A: In a word… happiness. Whether it is for personal indulgence or as I like to say, sharing the love, our bundt cakes make people happy. At the very least… how can you not say “bundt” without a smirk or grin?

If you missed my Facebook Live interview with Robert, please see it here.

I want to thank Robert for the time he gave me so I could learn more about him and his business. We are fortunate that they call Surprise home.

If you have a recommendation for where I should go next, please call me or my staff at 623-222-1300 or email Brandon Hiller at I look forward to your input.

City Manager’s Budget

At the beginning of June, City Council adopted the FY2020 Budget. This budget addressed city growth, while maintaining our existing assets. We voted to approve $412.7 million for Fiscal Year 2020. This budget focuses on Council’s commitment to maintain quality public services and infrastructure, while addressing the needs of a growing community.

The recommended budget includes $105.8 million for Capital Improvement Projects. These funds support new projects such as facilities and roads as well as support asset replacement and maintenance needs to existing infrastructure, including public safety vehicle replacement; road maintenance; information technology, recreation and utility infrastructure.

The overall general fund revenues are expected to increase seven percent from the FY2019 adopted budget, due largely to population growth and a favorable economy.

Youth Entrepreneurship Boot Camp

On June 7, Councilmember Duffy and I were honored to judge the AZ TechCelerator’s 6th Annual Surprise Youth Entrepreneurship Boot Camp. This was a fun event where our youth got to display their talent and ideas.

Thirteen students from Paradise Honors, Willow Canyon, and Valley Vista high schools and several home-schooled teens participated. The teens worked at the city’s AZ Techcelerator business incubator to identify a community need and develop a product or service to address that need.

The winning team of this year’s Youth Entrepreneurship Boot Camp created and pitched a concept for a peer-to-peer tutoring service, TutorFLY, which connects students to peers who can assist them with achieving academic excellence.

Please join me in congratulating the winners:
Dylan Tluczek, homeschooled
Bryan Main, homeschooled
Prince Alino, Paradise Honors High School
Gabby Roberts, Valley Vista High School

Councilmember Sanders and Councilmember Duffy pose with participants of the AZ TechCelerator Surprise Youth Entrepreneurship Boot Camp.

Hilton Garden Inn

I was honored to attend the ribbon cutting for the Hilton Garden Inn, located at 16601 North Stadium Way, on June 14. This is located right here in D5! This hotel will truly fit into our community and assist with the countless tournaments and Spring Training games being held at Surprise Stadium.

The Hilton Garden Inn offers 124 rooms to assist with our growing tourism market. We are grateful that the Hilton Garden Inn is able to call Surprise home! We are excited to continue to build a great relationship with them! Welcome to Surprise, Hilton Garden Inn!

Surprise City Councilmembers attend the Hilton Garden Inn grand opening.

Veterans Reflection Circle

On June 24, we hosted a touching groundbreaking ceremony for our new Veterans Reflection Circle that will be built in honor of our late Surprise resident and combat wounded veteran, Brian Mancini.

The Veterans Reflection Circle is being built within the Surprise Community Park, next to the fishing lake. It will open on Veterans Day 2019. This site was selected for a special reason, Brian loved nature, fishing and quiet self-reflection. These are things Brian hoped would inspire countless other veterans.

The thoughtful project design will be completed at no cost to the city. Everything will be generously donated. We are honored to have partners who will be honoring our veterans. For more information on the Veterans Reflection Circle please visit

Surprise City Councilmembers break ground at the Veteran's Reflection Circle.

HOA Meetings

This past month, I met with the Mountain Vista Ranch Home Owner’s Association and listened to the latest happenings in the neighborhood and shared about things going on in the city. If you or your HOA would like to know more, please reach out to me, and I will be happy to set up a meeting.

Every month, I look forward to meeting with residents. If I have not yet attended your meeting, please contact me at 623.222.1325. I always enjoy spending time with residents and listening to their concerns.

Councilmember Sanders meets with the Mountain Vista Ranch Home Owner's Association.

4th of July Celebration

The City of Surprise will be hosting its 36th Annual 4th of July Celebration on Thursday at the Mark Coronado Park, 15850 N. Bullard Ave, from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m.

The event admission is FREE! There will also be live music from Steven P and Diversity Jukebox, food trucks, yard games, and contests, and much more. Gates will open at 5:30 p.m. The city’s Independence Day fireworks display will start at 8:40 p.m.

There is also an option to hang out by the pool for 4th of July; Parks and Recreation is hosting a pool party at the Surprise Aquatic Center, 15831 N. Bullard Ave, from 6 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. This event is limited to the first 400 Surprise Residents. Admission fee is $6, which includes games, activities, and poolside view of the city’s annual firework show. Reminder, this event is for Surprise Residents only.

District 5 Newsletter • June 2019

HOA Meetings

This past month, I met with the Orchards HOA and listened to the latest happenings in the neighborhood. I was able to get our water resource portfolio management team to schedule a meeting with the board to see how the Orchards can save money on their water bill with regards to landscape. If you or your HOA would like to know more, please reach out to me. and I will be happy to set up a meeting.

Every month, I look forward to meeting with residents. If I have not yet attended your meeting, please contact me at 623.222.1325. I always enjoy spending time with residents and listening to their concerns.

District Meet & Greets

Thank you to everyone who attended our District 5 & 6 Meet and Greet on May 20 at Panera Bread in the City Center. This was an informative meeting where residents had the opportunity to ask questions, and give their comments and concerns. We provided the residents an update on what is happening around the city, such as new businesses that are coming to the community and city work being done. Please keep an eye out for future meet & greets with other councilmembers.

Councilmember Sanders meets with residents

Surprise Police Department Appreciation Dinner

My fellow City Council colleagues and myself attended the Surprise Police Department Appreciation Dinner on May 17. We had the honor to see the heroes in our community awarded for the great efforts. Please join me in congratulating:

Officer of the Year: Corbin Claxton
Detective of the Year: 
Lucas Jensen
Rookie of the Year: 
Dillon Bleicher
Civilian Employee of the Year: 
Erin Rivera
Supervisor of the Year: 
Michael Robbins
Volunteer of the Year: 
Barbara Jones
Citizen Patrol Volunteer of the Year: 
Marylene Cayro

Lifesaving Awards: Officer Gerald Graziosi, Officer Fredrick Cuthbertson, Officer Joshua Bucur, Officer William Bisson, Officer Shawna Ebey, Officer Tyler Johnson, Sergeant Garrick Boxberger | Unit Citation- Traffic Unit: Sergeant Michael Robbins, Leonard Collins, Drew Persha, Richard Malone, Steven Shernicoff

Congratulations to these outstanding individuals, and thank you to the first responders of our city!

Surprise Chamber of Commerce

On Tuesday, May 28, I attended the Surprise Regional Chamber of Commerce’s Chamber Convener and Stakeholder Event. The main topic of this event was Arizona’s New Water Policy Landscape: Sustainable Water Solutions and How they Impact Businesses and Communities.

The State of Arizona just ratified a new Drought Contingency Plan with the other users of the Colorado River which will impact water policy for the state’s foreseeable future. This new plan will play a role in how well Arizona is positioned for future growth and a healthy business environment.

This event featured two speakers active in shaping Arizona’s water future; Lisa Atkins, President of the Board for the Central Arizona Project (CAP), and Rory Van Pouke, a water policy expert and General Manager at Apache Sun Golf Club in San Tan Valley.

Councilmember Sanders and Deputy City Manager Terry Lowe

In a panel discussion format, Ms. Atkins and Mr. Van Pouke provided an overview of their backgrounds in water and the current state of water from their perspectives. Rory explained that the perception that golf courses were a waste of water could not be further from the truth. Golf courses generate a significant amount of tourism revenue for Arizona and account for nearly 42,000 golf related jobs, 18,000 of those jobs are directly related to golf courses. From a water perspective, nearly all golf courses are watered with reclaimed water reducing the burden on water resources.

Lisa has over 43 years of public policy experience, the majority of which has been fighting for Arizona’s rights to its share of the region’s water supplies. From her perspective, Arizona has been a leader in innovative water uses, water conservation, and water storage. She believes there is plenty of water for Arizona; where it will ultimately come from and how it will be used and managed in the future is the challenge.

LA Fitness Grand Opening

My fellow City Council members and I attended the Grand Opening of LA Fitness (16635 W Bell Road) on May 18. The General Manager, Steve Mallory, provided us with a great tour of the facility. The Surprise community is fortunate to have a company like LA Fitness here. We are looking forward to the strength they will provide to our community. Welcome to Surprise, LA Fitness!

Surprise City Council attends the LA Fitness grand opening

Memorial Day Weekend Events

Annual Memorial Ceremony at the World War II Monument

On Saturday May 25, at the World War II Memorial at the Regional Library, the annual wreath laying ceremony took place. The monument honors all those airmen who trained at Luke Auxiliary Field #3, known as Fighter Field. The American Legion Post 96 and the White Tank Mountain Detachment #1246 of the Marine Corps League laid a wreath at the monument. George Van de Langeryt did a wonderful job of hosting the ceremony. Post 96 Commander Mike Elliott was a fantastic guest speaker. Numerous groups were also represented, including the Rosie the Riveters, and members of the Arizona Veterans Hall of Fame.

Surprise City Council at WWII Monument

Sun Village Memorial Day 2019

I had the great privilege of speaking at Sun Village Memorial Day Ceremony “Honoring our Fallen Heroes”. Thank you to the incredible sponsors who made this event possible and thank you to Tomas Garcia for organizing this remarkable event. A bigger thank you to the Veterans in attendance for your service. Our country is truly great for having men and women like you surrounding us in our everyday life.

District 5 Newsletter • May 2019

Veterans Bridge

The city hosted a celebration for the renaming of the Grand Ave/Bell Road overpass to Veterans Bridge on Friday, April 26. The Arizona State Board on Geographic and Historic Names approved the naming at their January meeting. The name change was lead by Senator Rick Gray after a discussion with Mayor Skip Hall and Councilman Ken Remley. It was an honor to welcome dignitaries from all over the state, especially Governor Doug Ducey and Congresswoman Debbie Lesko. The renaming of Veterans Bridge is truly special for our city with so many veterans residing in Surprise, the West and Northwest Valley.

If you are a Veteran seeking assistance, please contact the city’s Human Services and Community Vitatlity Department (623.222.1500), as they offer programs targeted at assisting veterans with finding employment and connections to housing and health and mental health care.

Council Conversation

I taped my first Council Conversation this month. I sat down with Ottawa University’s Vice President and Provost Dr. Dennis Tyner and Head Football Coach Mike Nesbitt. We discussed the new buildings on the campus, and what kind of work the football team and the Surprise Fire-Medical Department are doing together. I also interviewed Scott Phillips of Carefree Partners and the city’s Economic Development Manager Mike Hoover. We discussed the results of public input from the local community outreach meetings and what to expect in the future City Center. You can watch the show here:

City Manager Recommended Budget

At our City Council meeting on April 16, City Manager Michael Frazier released his FY2020 recommended budget. The recommended expenditure budget for FY2020 is $414 million and includes $106.3 million voter approved General Obligation Bond projects in the areas of Public Safety, Traffic Congestion, Mitigation, and Pavement Preservation.

As your Councilman, I am diligently working with staff on having a balanced budget for our city. I want to make sure residents are aware of how their tax dollars are being spent. A public hearing and Council’s Tentative Budget adoption is scheduled for the Regular Council Meeting on May 7; with final budget adoption scheduled for the June 4 meeting. Both of these meetings will be held at 6 pm in the City Council Chambers. This is an opportunity for residents to let the City Council know their thoughts on the budget in a public hearing. As always, you can contact me anytime and send your thoughts on the budget.

Surprise Fire-Medical Department Awards & Promotion Ceremony

I joined some of my City Council colleagues at the Surprise Fire-Medical Awards & Promotion Ceremony on April 4.

Please join me in congratulating these outstanding individuals that Chief Tom Abbott recognized that evening:

Chief’s Award: Firefighter Roy Michael
Perry Award: Assistant Fire Chief Darrell Johnston
Fire Medal: Firefighter Dave Anderson
Engine Company of the Year: Engine Company 302, A-shift: Engineer (Acting Captain) Steve Gilbert Engineer Steve Spirlong Firefighter Tim Penner Firefighter Donovan Maturan
Paramedic of the Year: Firefighter Sean Cullen
EMT of the Year: Firefighter Mike Naehrbass
Unit of the Year: SFMD Honor Guard
Individual Citations: Engineer Jenesa Dobrinski Firefighter Mike Meadors Engineer David Anderson, Volunteers from the Lockbox Program – Gordon & Barbara Birschbach, Barbara Pelligrino, Ray & Ramona Simpson, James Cooper, Ron Ottwell
Crisis Response Rookie Volunteer of the Year: Tim Tait
Crisis Response Volunteers of the Year: Don & Patti Nelson
Administrative Civilian Volunteer of the Year: Esther Gillett
Civilian of the Year: Administrative Technician Dana Smith

Thank you for your service Surprise Fire-Medical!

WHAM 6th Annual Recycle Fashion Show & Art Festival

WHAM hosted the 6th Annual Recycle Fashion Show and Arts Festival on April 6. The theme of the event was “Where Creativity Goes Green”. I enjoyed attending this event which showcased the innovation and design of these artists. This year, they showcased three exhibits which included the Recycled Arts Exhibit, the Youth Recycle Arts Exhibit, and the Find It, Fix It, & Flip It Exhibit.

The festival enlightens and educates families on the importance of recycling and reusing what normally is cast-off as trash while learning fun and innovated ways of keeping Earth clean. Be sure to keep an eye out for next year’s annual festival.

Kingswood Parke Spring Fling

I attended the Kingswood Parke Spring Fling on April 6. I enjoyed spending time with residents and getting to know more about them. The community did a great job of putting together a family fun BBQ and carnival that appealed to all ages. They also had local country western band for the live music. Thank you, Kingswood Parke for hosting a fantastic Spring Fling!

Taste of Surprise

The Rotary Club of Surprise showcased another great Taste of Surprise at the Surprise Stadium on April 6. The Taste of Surprise benefits local charities, while providing great live entertainment, a beer garden, and a car show. My fellow City Council colleagues and I even got into the dunk tank, where residents got the chance to show off their pitcher’s arm. Thank you to the Rotary Club of Surprise for your hard work and dedication to this truly great event.

Councilmember Sanders sitting in dunk tank

14th Annual Golden Rule Awards Banquet

The Arizona Interfaith Movement hosted the 14th Annual Golden Rule Awards Banquet on April 11 at the Mesa Convention Center. I attended the event with Councilwoman Nancy Hayden and city staff. The Arizona Interfaith Movement’s mission is to build bridges of understanding, respect, and support among diverse people of faith through education, dialogue, service, and the implementation of the Golden Rule.

Citizens Patrol Recognition Dinner

On April 12, City Council attended the Surprise Citizens Patrol Dinner. Members of the patrol were recognized for their dedicated efforts to our city. The Citizens Patrol have saved our city just under $10 million since their installation. It is remarkable what they do for our city, and it was an honor to be able to recognize them.

WHAM Fundraiser

WHAM held a local fundraiser on April 14 at Top Golf in Glendale. City of Surprise officials, along with Mayor Hall, Councilmember Duffy and myself had the chance to compete against each other. Councilmember Patrick Duffy, Deputy City Manager Terry Lowe, and myself, along with my family, competed against Mayor Skip Hall, Police Chief Terry Young, City Manager Michael Frazier, and Mike Hoover from Surprise Economic Development. While we did not win, we finished ahead of Mayor Hall and his team.

Marley Park Community Outreach Meeting

Carefree Partners hosted a community meeting in Marley Park on April 15. Approximately 25 residents attended the meeting and provided input on the development of the future downtown Surprise. I encourage all residents to keep an eye out for future meetings.

HOA Board Meetings

I met with Sun Village & Sun Village Condos HOA Board Members as well as the Orchards HOA last month to provide mutual updates in their communities and the city.

Surprise’s Spring EGG-Stravaganza

Eager egg hunters, from toddlers to 10 year-olds participated in a fun, family event on April 20. The fields were covered in over 50,000 eggs for children to collect. The event included inflatables and a surprise appearance by the Easter Bunny himself. It was a great, family fun filled event.

Surprise Youth Council “We Are” Art Installation

The Surprise Youth Council unveiled their “We Are” art installation on April 23. The art encourages unity within Surprise through a visual art piece. It is designed to bring people together as a celebration of our community’s unique identities and the power we have when we stand together as one. It was an honor to attend and support the Surprise Youth Council.

District 5 Newsletter • March 2019

Utility Rate Study Approved by City Council

City Council approved the Utility Rate Study during the February 19th Regular Council Meeting, effectively adjusting the five-year rate schedule for city serviced solid waste customers at the beginning of fiscal year (FY) 2020 which begins on July 1, 2019.

Single-family solid waste customers will pay a monthly base rate of $20.70 starting July 1. 2019 and with another scheduled increase to $23.40 on July 1, 2020. The rate schedule will then increase the rate by $0.10 each fiscal year beginning in 2021, bringing the rate to $23.70 on July 1, 2023. Residential water and wastewater utility rates will remain unchanged in FY 2020-2024. This is the first significant solid waste increase since 2010; a $0.33 rate increase did go into effect in FY 2019. For information regarding the Utility Rate Study, it can be found online at

Destiny Springs Behavioral Health Hospital

I had the opportunity to attend the ribbon cutting for the Destiny Springs Behavioral Health Hospital at the beginning of the month and to see what this state of the art facility has in store for our community

Destiny Springs Grand Opening

Surprise Fire-Medical Station 305 Open House

It was great to attend the open house for Fire Station 305 and meet our first responders. Here is some information regarding an upcoming open house for Fire Station 303:

March 2nd – Station 303,15440 N.
Cotton Lane Open house is from 9 a.m. – noon.

Come out and meet the firefighters, check out the living quarters, walk through the bays and see the fire trucks! Individuals that attend will even get to look at the medical equipment, firefighting gear, and tools used on emergency calls!

Valley Partnership February Breakfast

I attended the Valley Partnership Breakfast where I had the chance to listen to a panel of real estate, financing, and development executives. This panel discussed the Arizona economy and what they expect it to look like in 2019 and beyond.

Valley partnership

Spring Training Welcome Back Luncheon

To kickoff Spring Training here in Surprise, I attended the Spring Training Welcome Back Luncheon where I had the opportunity to listen to representatives from the Kansas City Royals and Texas Rangers talk about their eagerness to start their season off right here in Surprise. Be sure to check out them out this season at the Surprise Stadium. Tickets are available at

spring training luncheon

Building Home for Heroes

The City Council and I attended a great event here in the community where non-profit organization Building Homes for Heroes and Chase Bank partnered to donate a mortgage-free home to a veteran in our community. It was a special event to attend and see how these organizations teamed up to serve our community.

Welcome Home Heroes

Upcoming Events

City Center Community Meeting

On March 7th from 4:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m. there will be a Community Meeting at Sun Village in the multi-purpose room to discuss the development of City Center. Residents are encouraged to attend. Sun Village is located at 17300 North Sun Village Parkway

State of the City & City Hall Celebration

On March 28th from 6-8 p.m., our city will be hosting its annual State of the City. This year, we will also be celebrating the 10th anniversary of the opening of our City Hall. The festivities will start in the council chambers of City Hall, where Mayor Hall will kick the event off with a State of the City video presentation. Then, the community is invited to the celebration in in the courtyard and first floor of City Hall with food, entertainment and more! This will be a great event for residents to interact with their city government. I look forward to seeing you all there.

Surprise Youth Council is Recruiting

The city is recruiting new members for the Surprise Youth Council. Youth Council members serve the community by collaborating with local leaders, including the Mayor and City Council, to give youth a voice in city issues and to help solve youth issues through awareness campaigns, service projects, and community-building events.

Students who are currently in grades 7-11 may apply, as long as they are attending a middle or high school within the Surprise City limits, attending a Dysart Unified School District, or reside within Surprise city limits.

Applications are being accepted now through March 24. The application consists of a video submission, no longer than 1 minute and 30 seconds and should include the following information:

  • Your Name, grade, school you attend
  • Why you want to be on SYC
  • If you could bring one thing to this city or change one thing, what would it be? What can you and a group like SYC do about it?
  • Briefly tell us about a time you were fearless, creative, or hardworking

Videos can be submitted to Lord Garcillano by uploading your application video from your Google Drive and sharing it with

Applicants must also have a parent or guardian complete and return a Parent Acknowledgment Form.

Please visit or contact Lord Garcillano at 623.222.1035 or for more questions.

Spring Training

Spring Training is in full swing here in Surprise. Make sure you take the time to check out the awesome fan experiences and ticket promotions we have going on at Surprise Stadium. Visit for tickets and promotions. I hope to see you out at the ballpark!

Household Hazardous Waste Event

You no longer have to wait in line to drop off your household hazardous waste. Instead, we will be coming to you. Starting April 1-12, Surprise residents will now be able to schedule appointments to have their household hazardous waste picked up directly from their homes. Scheduled pick up will occur April 8-19. For more information, visit

District 5 Newsletter

District 5 Appointment

I am humbled and honored to have been appointed District 5 Councilman for the City of Surprise. Having lived in Surprise for the past nine years, I am proud to call Surprise home.

Councilmember David Sanders swearing in

My professional background is in International Business and Finance from the W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University and a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration from California State University- San Marcos. I have served on the city’s Community and Recreation Advisory Commission since 2013 and was a member of the Capital Improvement Funding Exploratory Committee in 2015.

The term expiration for this appointment will be December 31, 2020, and the remainder of the four-year term will be placed on the next scheduled council election in August 2020 per Arizona statute.

Events & Meetings Attended

Surprise Martin Luther King Celebration

Surprise Martin Luther King Celebration

In honor of the life and work of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the city of Surprise hosted a day of celebration and service on Saturday, January 19th. It was truly a great opportunity to be a part of this celebration.

Seventh Annual Surprise Fine Art & Wine Festival

I also had the opportunity to attend The Seventh Annual Surprise Fine Art & Wine Festival, presented by Thunderbird Artists and the City of Surprise, which was held January 11-13. It was a great atmosphere to be around with live music and a variety of food trucks.

Meeting with Sun Village

Mayor Skip Hall and I met with the Sun Village community manager to discuss the community and its needs.

Meeting with Surprise Center Development Company

I had a great meeting with the officials from the Surprise Center Development Company (SCDC). We discussed potential development plans for the city center. It is important that we start building a good working relationship with the land owners to help kick start the development in the heart of the city. Bringing in new businesses and venues generates the engine of economic growth for our city.

Upcoming Events

Surprise Fire-Medical Station 304 Open House

It was great to attend the open house for Fire Station 304 and meet our first responders. Here is some information regarding upcoming open houses for Fire Stations 305 & 306

February 2nd- Station 305 – 15517 N. Parkview Place Surprise, AZ
February 16th- Station 306 – 16645 W. Clearview Blvd Surprise, AZ

Both open houses are 9 a.m. – noon. Come out and meet the firefighters, check out the living quarters, walk through the bays and see the fire trucks! Individuals that attend will even get to look at the medical equipment, firefighting gear, and tools used on emergency calls!

Surprise Spring Training

Spring Training is right around the corner here in Surprise, especially right here in our own District 5! The road to the World Series starts February 23rd! Come check out the Texas Rangers and the Kansas City Royals! For tickets and game promotions, visit