Wednesday, January 9, 2008

“Wailin!” in the New Year
World Music for the Kenai (WMFTK), founded by Kasilof’s own Michael J. Morgan Ph.D. has promised since the organizations inception to present, “Some of the greatest artists you’ve never heard ofand will never forget.” With recent concerts that included Po’Girl and Antje Duvekot, Morgan is fulfilling his mission, “To bring world class, multi-cultural music and performing artists to the Central Kenai Peninsula.” Many of WMFTK’s memorable concerts have taken place in Morgan’s Moose Pasture located at mile 107.3 of the Sterling Highway, but has also included concerts at the Kenai Visitor & Cultural Center, Old Town Playhouse, Soldotna Senior Center and Peninsula Grace Auditorium. Morgan is devoted to bringing music and joy into people’s lives through performing and teaching.

Central Peninsula Christmas Bird Count circle expands
Twenty two adults and three children officially participated in the 108th annual Christmas Bird Count in the Soldotna-Kenai area last week. The Central Peninsula has been participating in the unique international count that includes all of Canada and Mexico since 1983 with the center of the 15 mile diameter circle being the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge. The local count was discontinued in 1992 and restarted in 1999 as a result of the interest of Jack Sinclair, a local birder who coordinates the event in addition to his work as Supt. of Alaska Department of State Parks, “We’ve seen the interest and participation increase each year,” says Sinclair, “It’s probably one of the best programs you can get into as far as introducing yourself to birding and becoming acquainted with the wildlife that surrounds us in the winter and not getting lost in a crowd as is typical in other locations.”

Northern Lights Archers
The ancient sport of archery is alive and well on the Kenai Peninsula at Northern Lights Archery off Kalifornsky Beach Rd. on Poppy Lane. Randy Hedman and his family recently opened the 14 lane, 20 yard archery range and full line pro shop “I’ve been shooting archery for about 19 years and use to work at an archery shop in Anchorage. I love teaching and working with people so when we moved down here I saw the need for a local archery facility and pro shop, so we took the opportunity to open Northern Lights Archery,” Hedman told the Dispatch.

Each fall I eagerly await just enough cold weather to get the lakes froze up so I can return to my favorite winter time activity, ice fishing. Several times in the past ten years I have really had my patience tested waiting for the lakes to freeze over. This year was no exception as the ice was slow to arrive and on several of my favorite lakes it still is not safe to fish on.

Donation of start-up items gets school going
Peninsula Optional High School opened our doors this past fall with many start-up items in place except for an established student account. Thanks to Agrium, this crucial aspect of the school is now well taken care of.

Family event takes many to succeed
The Rotary Club - Kenai River, Soldotna wishes to express our gratitude to all who made the recent "From China with Fun" a wonderful fun-filled, family event. Funds raised from the evening will go toward literacy programs on the peninsula that include the Read to Your Baby Program, providing new moms and babies born at Central Peninsula Hospital with information on how to raise a reader and baby's first hardback book in a nice cloth book bag.

Reader expects more from Palin when it comes to mining
There are many Alaskans who are still waiting for our new, very popular governor to erase more of Frank Murkowski's legacy. With persistence and courage, Sarah Palin could be the best governor in Alaska's history.

Donations make a difference
On behalf of the Redoubt Elementary School PTA, we would like to thank the following businesses, organizations and individuals for their generous contributions to our Holiday Kindness Program: Professional Home IV, Tesoro Alaska, Dr. Carole Bucholz, Walters & Associates Insurance, Wells Fargo Bank, Soldotna Dental Clinic, Eric and Teresa Fiebelkorn, B. Diane Ireland, Rick and Bobbie Baldwin, Les and Malinda Crane, Greg and Savannah Smith, Sean and Lynn Dusek, Richard and Ann Fraser, Jim and Ruthann Truesdell and John and Sheilah-Margaret Pothast.

Police officers' work affects kids in positive ways
The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Kenai Peninsula would like to thank the following police officers for their dedication to the youth of the peninsula: Officer Kelly George, Officer Ben Langham, Lt. Kim Wannamaker and Sgt. Gus Sandahl from Kenai and Officer Tony Garcia from Soldotna.

Photo feature: Glimmer of what's to come
Pillars of light break through clouds hanging above Cook Inlet shortly before sunset recently. The central Kenai Peninsula is gaining more than two minutes of daylight each day as the march toward summer begins.

Committee opposes subsistence hunt
For approximately three decades, trophy hunters have attempted to protect the moose population near Tustumena Lake by instituting hunts based on drawing permits only. Now a federal subsistence proposal would undermine their efforts by allowing subsistence hunters to take any bull moose regardless of antler size.

Kenai River boating safety to be addressed
While many Alaskans utilize boats for fun or to make a living by fishing, guiding, or transporting tourists, there are many dangers to being on the icy and often turbulent waters of the North but the state is working toward improving safety for boaters, specifically those taking to the Kenai River.

Wanted: Grandparents
It is no secret that elders are repositories of cultural knowledge, and a local organization is hoping to utilize the skills of the silver-haired sect of society to benefit youngsters.

11 public hearings on tap
Tuesday's Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting could be a long one.

Council seeks large refund
The city of Soldotna believes the state is not giving it credit for extra payments it made to the Public Employee Retirement System. So, the city wants a refund.

Seaton proposes energy credit for alternative power
Rep. Paul Seaton has pre-filed a bill to encourage small-scale, alternative energy power generation in Alaska by requiring electrical utilities to offer customers the option of installing net-metering systems.

Wildflower expert visits garden club
Tree limbs may be laden with snow, but now's the time gardeners bend their thoughts toward spring. Gardeners break out the seed catalogs, begin planning future projects and seek out ideas from more experienced gardeners on what to grow and how to grow it.

College invests in safety
In light of recent university tragedies across the nation, Kenai Peninsula College is implementing a system of campus-wide communication for emergency use called MIR3.

State toughens refund order
State regulators have strengthened language of an order requiring Enstar Natural Gas to give refunds to all qualifying landlords who have apartment buildings served by a single gas meter.

Claire Bela Barrett
Newborn infant Claire Bela Barrett of Corvallis, Ore., died Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2007.

Ludwig 'Babe' Osowiecki
Former Cooper Landing resident Ludwig "Babe" Osowiecki died Friday, Dec. 28, 2007. He was 61.

Wallace 'Wally' Darrel Van Sky
North Kenai resident Wallace "Wally" Darrel Van Sky died Thursday, Jan. 3, 2008, at home of natural causes, while surrounded by family. He was 87.

Joseph Dale Denison
Lifelong Alaskan Joseph Dale Denison died unexpectedly Friday, Jan. 4, 2008, from an aneurysm at Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna. He was 37.

Champagne is fantastic!
In the week or so since our New Year's Eve celebrations, some of us still have unfinished bottles of champagne taking up space in our refrigerators.Whether it still holds a bit of sparkle or has completely fallen flat, there's much life left in those bottles waiting to get out and take new shape in the form of dishes both savory and sweet.

Champagne Sabayon with Raspberries
6 large egg yolks

Healthy Bites
Add regular physical activity to your daily routine Antioxidants help you fight back against disease

Champagne Risotto
2 tablespoons butter

Champagne Chicken with Mushrooms and Cream
6 boneless chicken breasts,

Around the Peninsula
Re-Group meeting T-200 seeks volunteers After-prom, grad meetings set Steak dinner, auction fundraiser planned

Around the Peninsula
Historical society meeting set Women voters to meet Mycological society to gather Parenting to be discussed Swim lessons available Winter games planned FCS board meeting planned

Sports Brief
Knotted at one apiece, Soldotna's Tyler Best gave the Stars a 2-1 victory when he scored 52 seconds into overtime Tuesday night at the Jason Peterson Memorial Rink in Nikiski.

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