Teen works to help the homeless

Local youth, Casey Marsh, is dedicated to helping the homeless in Homer.
“If I see people struggling, I have empathy and I want to help,” she said. “Everyone has their struggles, but those struggles shouldn’t have to include not knowing where they will sleep tonight, or when their next meal will be.”
Inspired by role models, Marsh volunteers her time with many local homeless advocacy groups.
While a junior in high school, Marsh watched her older sister, Chelsea, work on her senior service project, called Teens in Between, with J.J. O’Rourke, local resident and founder of homeless youth advocacy organization, Teens United for a Future (T.U.F.F. Teens).

Louisiana man heads call to help Alaska youth

For years, Troy McMorris has had a heart for youth ministry.
“Youth are the future and we can’t risk losing a whole generation to the hopeless trappings of the bad aspects of society and culture,” he said. “We have to act, we have to become advocates within the community and we have to avail ourselves to be participants in the solution.”
Born and raised in Louisiana, McMorris shared that his own childhood was tumultuous. While his mother was pregnant with him, his father left to fight in Vietnam. After he was born, his mom enlisted in the United States Army.

Food pantry receives $5,000 grant for Martin’s service

The Homer Community Food Pantry will receive a $5,000 grant from Wells Fargo in recognition of Homer Business Relationship Manager Cinda Martin’s volunteer efforts with the nonprofit. The grant will help Homer Community Food Pantry provide food and assistance to approximately 100 families a week and 12,000 individuals a year in the southern Kenai Peninsula.
Martin is one of only 34 team members across the company to receive a $5,000 Volunteer Service Award. The award recognizes Wells Fargo team members who make an exceptional impact through volunteerism.

Local youth meets her muse in music

Throughout her young life, Ella Parks has been surrounded by artists who inspire her, including her aunt – a ceramics artist, her dad – a photographer and her mom – a musician.
Now a junior at Homer High School, she is sharing her own talents with local and Anchorage audiences, belting out blues and jazz songs from some of her favorite singers, including Etta James, Nat King Cole, Ella Fitzgerald and Adele.

Kayak angling offers more than just ‘good vibes’

Kayak angler Rudy Tsukada first started seriously fishing from a kayak in 2011, but he still considers himself “relatively new” to the sport. That “newness,” however, appears to have little bearing on his overall knowledge and experience with the whole process.
With the help of the Kachemak Bay Water Trail Committee and Dave Brann, Tsukada will host a workshop this weekend: Water Safety and Tips on Fishing from Your Kayak. The two-day event offers a 6-9 p.m. Saturday presentation at Land’s End, followed by an on-the-water demonstration Sunday.
Tsukada spoke with the Homer Tribune earlier in the week, and offered some insight into human-powered fishing in Kachemak Bay.

Beth Carroll wears many hats around town

Growing up in a row house in Philadelphia, Beth Carroll had limited access to natural and open spaces.
“My mother used to talk about how she would love to live in the country,” Carroll said. “We moved to New Jersey, which to my mom was a dream – we had an acre, trees and a tiny patch of forest near our house. To my family, that was nature and a love of nature, earth and wild places was instilled in me.

NOAA to remove Endangered Species Act protections for most humpback whales

Humpback whales, a species that migrates to Alaska and is famous for singing below the water’s surface and leaping above it, are now so numerous that most no longer need the Endangered Species Act protections that have sheltered them since the 1970s, federal officials said on Tuesday.
The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration issued a final rule designating 14 distinct population segments of humpback whales and removing listing for nine of those segments. The ruling will go into effect in early October.

Acorn Enterprises: vacuum and mops ‘part of the family’

Candy Edwards refers to her vacuum as “Nigel,” her mop as “Cinderella” and her feather duster as “Rex.”
For the past 27 years, Edwards has provided janitorial services to Homer residences and businesses; she considers it a privilege that people entrust her with their homes, their families and their businesses.

Baking treats and building dreams

Adrienne Leffler is a stay-at-home mom who juggles caring for her family with providing baked goods for the Homer community.
“I started out baking just for people I know,” Leffler said. “But so many people told me I should go into business for myself, so I thought I would give it a shot.”
Leffler created Dren’s Creations, and her baking and sweet treats can be found every Saturday at the Alaska Wildberry Emporium Market on Pioneer Avenue.

KHLT speaks on land projects

Icy roads and Nutcracker practice didn’t stop the Homer community from gathering for Thursday’s Kachemak Heritage Land Trust’s annual meeting at Islands and Ocean Visitor Center. Some 50 people came to hear stories of the Anchor River — the evening’s theme — from special speakers, like award-winning author Richard Chiappone.
Other speakers included Coowe Walker, Watershed Ecologist with the Kachemak Bay Research Reserve. Walker explained that much of her current time is consumed by being the parent of a “mouse” in the Nutcracker Ballet. She added she’d be leaving early to get back to rehearsal — but that’s how it goes when a town is dedicated to its community.
While the Nutcracker and the Land Trust may not seem to have much in common, Walker said she found heartwarming analogies. Both evoke a commitment to community and an understanding that a lot goes on behind the scenes.

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