Letters to the Editor – August 7

Save the kings
Real stewardship of Kenai king salmon is not best served by fishing where kings spawn, hook and release mortality, or targeting the remaining genetic giants. More of the “same old stuff,” Dan Coffey is a Bob Penney employee again. There is a new nonprofit. Will this organization grub money from the hospital or eavesdrop on a UFA meeting? What Coffey did not do as board of fish chairman, 1,- limit guides, 2, – address habitat, 3, – complete the wake study, 4, – protect kings in the river. Beating up on set-netters while prosecuting an unlimited fishery in the river demonstrates a blatant hypocrisy in the current so called conservation measures. Will KKCA receive nonprofit status from the IRS? Will they have forceful influence at the 2014 fish board meeting? Will the river be more crowded next year? Will Kenai king salmon continue to shrink in size? The true answer is “D”, all of the above!
 John McCombs

Riptide tears into SBS to take city softball title
I am writing you with some feedback on your recent sports piece, “Riptide tears into SBS to take city softball title.” I found the piece engaging and the photo montage a nice touch. I do play in the league and happen to be on the Riptide squad.
I first want to point out that the Riptide sponsors are Home Run Oil and Alaska Training Room (not Best Western—as with the basketball team). Secondly, while it makes for more story appeal, SBS was far from a potential Cinderella story—they came in as a No. 4 seed, it was their second appearance in four years in the finals and they were the only team in the league to have handed the top three seeds a defeat during the regular season (Growlers lost only two during the season).
Neither Beluga Lake Lodge nor Riptide were able to do the same. Thirdly, as far as tournaments go, four games in a day is a routine event.(In the losers’ bracket, it many times is more; we’ve played as many as seven in one day, and they are typically always back to back-to-back. This is why it is referred to as the “whiners” bracket vs. the winners bracket.)
And lastly, the final score was 16-4—not a big difference, but accurate.
I was a bit surprised that second-place SBS was the story of the day. Their comeback victory was impressive, but did you know that Riptide beat the Growlers for the first time this year in the semifinals on a last-at-bat? It, as well, was one of the best games of the tournament.
Growlers scored two in the top of the seventh to tie the score, after it was back and forth the whole game. Riptide eventually loaded the bases with one out and a need for only a sacrifice fly to bring in the winning run. Tanya Norris stepped up to the plate and said, “I can do that,” and she proceeded to hit a grand-slam. Unfortunately, Riptide was up one home run, thus producing an out instead. With two outs, Rob Green was up and ultimately delivered the two-out, bottom of the seventh, winning RBI. (The final was 13-12 final.) It produced a back-to-back championship run.
You may tire of reporting on another Riptide title, I don’t know. Maybe some time to talk to players and coaches of the teams involved would produce a perspective that creates a fuller picture of it all. I’m pretty sure one doesn’t go to the athletic director when looking for a recap of a game. Jessica Marx does a phenomenal job and the hard work she does is invaluable to the league. {But, she has little appreciation for those who make a habit of winning and longs to find some other story with some other ending.}
All that being said, I do appreciate that you actually take time (unlike your competitor) to give some print space to the league. There was a day when it was covered weekly. With seven to 10 teams and 15-plus players on each team, it creates a group that would rival any other community recreation group. There is a story there and people would follow.
This is not meant to be an indictment of any kind. I have not only played in the league for 25 years, but been heavily involved in its transformation over that time. I’m passionate about the sport and maybe have given it too much over the years. But man, do I love the game!
Heath Smith

Veterans family picnic
The VA Volunteer Services of the Kenai Peninsula invite all veterans and their immediate families to the Southern Kenai Peninsula Annual Veterans Free Picnic at the American Legion Hall on Sunday, Aug. 18. (The Legion is located at Mile 2.5, East End Road.) The picnic will run from noon to 4 p.m.
The barbecue will offer hamburgers, hotdogs and ribs, as well as all the trimmings. Soda will also be provided. Door prizes, children’s games and musical groups will help round out the day’s enjoyment.   Representatives from the VA Medical Clinic in Kenai will be present to answer questions, give flu shots if available and provide blood glucose screenings and blood pressure checks. Bring your VA card or DD214.
You do not need to belong to a Veterans Organization to attend this picnic, it is for all veterans and their families.
Come out and dance on the grass; sit back and relax, let the kids play and have a fun day. And if it rains, we’ve got you covered.
For more information, call the Legion Post at 235-8864, or Darlene at 235-6789.
Darlene Sheldon

Wooden boat festival in September
The Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Society announces the dates of its annual Wooden Boat Festival as Sept. 5-8 in Homer. The Wooden Boat Society has designated 2013 the “Year of the Kayak,” and the festival will feature multiple kayak activities, in addition to a show of wooden kayaks, rowboats, sailboats, skiffs and umiaks.
Ageya Wilderness Education will bring several kayaks to the boat show.
Corey Freeman of the Skin Boat School will also speak, showing the umiak he hand-built this summer with Native youth at Ageya Wilderness Center. He will also build a kayak at the wooden boat show, and his website is www.skinboats.org.
This year’s exciting T-shirt art, “The Three Kayakers,” was drawn for the Wooden Boat Festival by Chelsea and Marissa Lind. The Lind sisters, 16-year-old twins, have been drawing since the age of seven. They joined the family artwork business at age 11. The twins are proud to bridge from their Aleut and Alutiiq family heritage to the modern art world.
“The Three Kayakers” logo will be available on T-shirts, hoodies and denim aprons.

Festival schedule
Thursday, Sept. 5, 7 p.m., Sea Chanteys, Tall Tales and Fisher Poets at the Salty Dawg on the Homer Spit.
Friday, Sept. 6, 7 p.m., Islands and Oceans Visitor Center:  Doors open at 6:30 p.m. Keynote speaker Corey Freeman, founder of the Skin Boat School (Anacortes, Washington), 7 to 8:30 p.m., followed by a program of kayak and wooden boat films. Shirts, hoodies, DVD’s, hats and cards will be available for purchase. Admission $5.
Saturday, Sept. 7, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., on the Homer Spit by Pier One, Wooden boat show, kayak building, kayak demonstrations, marine demonstrations including knot tying, net mending, bronze casting, maritime music. Food and beverages for sale. Shirts, hoodies, DVD’s, hats and cards will be available for purchase. Booth space is available for vendors.
Saturday, Sept. 7, 6 p.m., Alice’s Champagne Palace, live auction at 7 p.m. with auctioneer Bumppo, music and dancing with the Blues Trollers at 8:30 p.m. Cover charge $5.
Sunday, Sept. 8, noon to 5 p.m. on the Homer Spit by Pier One, wooden boat show continues, kayak building and demos continue, marine demos continue, live music jams, food and beverages.
Check www.kbwbs.org for updates on the 2013 Wooden Boat Festival. E-mail info@kbwbs.org with vendor inquiries and cultural suggestions.

Salmon Stock festival
Three days of fish, fun and music presented by the Renewable Resources Foundation successfully brought together over 5,000 wild salmon supporters in Ninilchik this weekend. The Alaskan celebration featured over 50 bands on four stages, the creations of talented Alaskan visual artists and opportunities for attendees to take “salmon action” and learn about Alaska’s renewable resources.
One of the most memorable moments of the weekend was when over 500 participants joined together to send a clear message of support for wild Alaskan salmon. Homer artist Mavis Muller arranged eager volunteers in a human mosaic before the aircraft came into position for photographer Carl Johnson to capture the moment.
The center of the design was created with colored fabric and the lettering made with alder branches. Alder is a shrub that grows along salmon spawning streams and is sustained by the nutrient rich carcasses of salmon.
“Art is communication,” Muller explains. “With our art we can inspire the world to rise to the challenges we face in sustaining Alaska’s healthy salmon and productive fisheries. We can inspire new possibilities and have fun doing it.”
Kate Huber

Contact the writer
Posted by on Aug 7th, 2013 and filed under Letters to the Editor. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

Comments are closed

Like us on Facebook