Homer Huskies go pink for Breast Cancer Awareness

In honor of Breast Cancer Awareness month, many schools on the Kenai Peninsula are raising money to help with the many costs associated with the disease. Last week, Homer Middle School students rose to the challenge and raised more than $800 in five days.
Staff members Rand Seaton and Brian Carper offered up their beards as additional incentive. Urged on by principal Kari Dendurent, both men agreed to dye their beards pink if enough money was raised. Seaton was even brave enough to allow the student council to “shape” his beard.
Who’s got spirit? We’ve got spirit! What are you doing for Breast Cancer Awareness Month?

‘Elder in training’ teaches attentive crowd how to butcher a seal

FAIRBANKS — She didn’t have her big ulu or her special slanted board but Marjorie “Kunaq” Tahbone smoothly sliced blubber and meat from a ringed seal before an audience Monday during a hands-on lesson.
Not many conventions offer food workshops like this one at the First Alaskans Institute Elders and Youth Conference.
The topic was “Food Sovereignty: Working on Seal” and the lead instructor in caring for the animal was Tahbone, a skilled 27-year-old who calls herself “an elder in training.”

New rules restrict who can give invocations at Assembly meetings

Atheists who want to read an invocation before a meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly are out of luck.
The assembly voted 6-3 in favor of a resolution at its Tuesday meeting that says the person delivering an invocation must be a representative of an Assembly-approved religious association that fits specific parameters.
The borough clerk will create and maintain a database of qualified religious associations and chaplains that send in written requests to deliver the prayers.
The resolution comes after several months of conversation and controversy over whether the assembly should continue with invocations at all, who should be allowed to deliver them, or if a moment of silence should be adopted as a replacement.

Walrus congregation apparently short-lived

A congregation of walruses spotted on a Northwest Alaska beach Friday numbered about 6,000, but the animals had departed within days and were probably heading out on their fall migration, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service said on Tuesday.
The walruses are likely swimming south to coastal haulout areas in Chukotka, Russia, Joel Garlich-Miller, a Fish and Wildlife walrus biologist said in a statement issued by the agency.
The walruses were gone from the barrier island on the eastern Chukchi Sea coast as of Monday, the Fish and Wildlife Service said.

Pondering the infinite on the Yukon Flats

YUKON FLATS — Out here, in a smooth plain stretching over Alaska’s wrinkled face, water and tree and mud dissolve to fuzz at each horizon. No hills or bumps. An ocean of sky. An observer once said Yukon Flats looks like a place where God forgot to put something.
Garrett Jones and I are camped on a giant island not far from the Yukon River map feature labeled “Halfway Whirlpool.” Surrounded by gritty islands of silt and poplars and leafless willows, we are in the center of a river channel more than three miles wide. We feel like ants twitching for a hill to climb.

Plane crash victims identified

Alaska State Troopers have identified the passenger and two pilots killed recently when the Hageland Aviation Cessna 208B they were in en route from Quinhagak to Togiak slammed into a mountainous area northwest of Togiak.
The passenger has been identified as Manokotak resident Louie John, 49.
Efforts to reach John’s family members last week were unsuccessful.

Man ends high-speed chase with boatyard crash

Homer area residents don’t often see a high-speed chase, but last Thursday, that was the scene as pedestrians and drivers dodged out of the way of a man careening through the Homer area pursued by Alaska State Troopers and Homer Police Department cars.
On Thursday afternoon, troopers received a report of a red Chevrolet Lumina speeding near Anchor Point. Troopers responded and attempted a traffic stop but the vehicle failed to yield. Troopers pursued and found the vehicle crashed in a ditch. The driver, later identified as Paul Suter, 30, fled into the woods, evading arrest.

Beth Wythe honored for service to city as mayor

Outgoing Homer City Mayor Beth Wythe was honored for her service to the community, receiving praise from many who served with her over the years. Wythe was first elected to the council 12 years ago, serving on the council for eight years before being elected to the mayor’s seat in 2012. She served two terms as mayor, and turned the gavel over to newly elected Mayor Bryan Zak at Monday’s meeting.
Former council member Francie Roberts spoke at the council meeting of Wythe’s ethics and tireless hard work on the city’s behalf.

Community news – Oct. 13

Ready to climb the walls? The Bay Club is looking for climbing instructors. If you are interested in instructing Homer youth in rock climbing on Monday, Wednesday and Friday afternoons please attend the climbing instructor round-up on Oct. 14 at 5 p.m. Please call Chris Alfiche at 299-5216 or Dana Jaworski at 399-8177 for more […]

When self-reliance goes too far

We Alaskans like to be known for our self-reliance, but when we cross the line to suffering in silence, it’s no longer a good thing.
Alaska has had one of the highest rates of suicide in the nation for decades. Suicide Prevention Awareness Month, September, is now behind us but the tough topics behind these painful statistics are relevant year-round.

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