Wednesday, January 14, 2004

Bandwagon for 2006 Arctic Winter Games continues to roll
The latest sponsors to pony up checks for $100,000 toward the 2006 Arctic Winter Games (AWG) to be hosted on the Kenai Peninsula are Aspen Hotels and Wells Fargo Bank.

United Way hoping for New Year's push
The United Way campaign is almost 60% of the way to meeting their $550,000 goal for the current campaign chaired by Rod Cason of Tesoro. The old year went out with a $35,000 boost from a corporate Conoco/Phillips donation to United Way.

Winter along the mighty Kenai River
Professionals call them "photo-ops," for shutterbugs it's simply getting lucky, and for anyone with a camera they are "Kodak moments."

It's about winter fun in the land of the midnight sun
Even though this time of year the illumination of the land of the midnight sun is more by the light of the silvery moon, Alaska's Playground; The Kenai Peninsula, is preparing for a whole lot of fun starting next week.

KPC celebrates an enthusiastic 40th Birthday
Some people may see a 40th Birthday as an over the hill marker, but Kenai Peninsula College (KPC) celebrated their 40th Anniversary last week as a mere trailhead for new beginnings and a renaissance of learning opportunities.

Mushers, skijorers lend a hand to help novices learn the ropes
Mushing and skijoring are fascinating sports, but for those not already in the know, they can be difficult to learn about.

Too bad there's no capital punishment in Alaska
Your coverage on the death of John Watson was outstanding. I went to the funeral. The service was one filled with compassion and love. When I was a state trooper and before retiring, I talked to John on occasion. He was always in good spirits and and left you feeling good when you left. He was a true down-to-earth-natured person, who cared about others.

New year presents another opportunity to serve God
Some make it sound like coming into a new year is a bah-humbug kind of thing. Do I have to change? Do I have to make a New Year's resolution? Lose 20 pounds? Spend more time with family? Work less?

Despite one's familiarity with lakes, it's easy to misjudge safety of ice
In reference to Mr. Bill Twohy's letter of condemnation regarding the unfortunate circumstances our fine public servants found themselves while vigilantly upholding the fishing regulations of our great state, I find your lack of compassion and pompous arrogance beyond belief.

Another view on whether KRSA uses sound science
In a Peninsula Clarion article, Kenai River Sportfishing Association president Ron Rainey says, "Our organization prides itself on utilizing sound science and supporting verifiable scientific studies rather than emotion and hyperbole." As a scientist who has worked in Upper Cook Inlet for over 20 years and has interacted with KRSA, I disagree.

Bridging gap between life, death
Death is a part of every life. But just knowing it's a common experience doesn't make the process of letting go any easier. That's where the staff members and volunteers at Hospice of the Central Peninsula come in.

Forster hearing delayed
A court hearing to decide whether David S. Forster qualifies for a court-appointed attorney was postponed Monday until Jan. 21.

Hospice provides lots of opportunities to help
Hospice of the Central Peninsula provides a range of services to individuals who are dying or grieving, but it also provides opportunities for other community members interested in helping their neighbors.

Snowmachine accident kills Ninilchik man
A Ninilchik man was killed in a snowmachine accident Saturday night or Sunday morning near Mile 3 of Oil Well Road in Ninilchik.

No action on bonus expected
An effort to turn back Gov. Frank Murkowski's veto of the Longevity Bonus Program appears dead in the water.

Keystone residents push for upgrade
Public facilities including boat launches and a parking area on Keystone Drive are attracting far more traffic than the narrow, unpaved section of borough road can bear, according to residents who want the borough to name the road a high priority on its federal and state road priorities lists.

Wells Fargo joins list of sponsors for Arctic games
Corporate sponsors for the Kenai Peninsula 2006 Arctic Winter Games continue to line up with the announcement last week by the Wells Fargo Bank that it would provide the games with a $100,000 grant.

First day of session starts with crash
JUNEAU It wasn't the sort of excitement state officials expected Monday morning.

Fire damages home off Ciechanski
A mid-afternoon fire caused extensive damage to a log home at the corner of Ciechanski Road and Woods Drive on Monday. No one was in the home at the time of the fire.

Eric (Jack) Johnson
Kenai area resident Eric (Jack) Johnson died Monday, Dec. 29, 2003, in Mesa, Ariz. He was 69.

Roger Alan Ceglie
Homer resident Roger Alan Ceglie died Wednesday, Jan. 7, 2004, at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer. He was 64.

Anna J. Nelson
Kenai resident Anna J. Nelson died Sunday, Jan. 11, 2004, at her home in Kenai. She was 83.

John Kersten
Longtime Soldotna resident John Kersten died Sunday, Jan. 11, 2004, at his home in Soldotna. He was 64.

Greg S. Lee
Ninilchik resident Greg S. Lee died Sunday, Jan. 11, 2004, from injuries sustained in a snowmachining accident in Ninilchik. He was 36.

John Henry Kersten
John Henry Kersten of Soldotna died at home Sunday, Jan. 11, 2004, of pancreatic cancer with his loved ones around him. He was 64.

Leslie (Butch) Gordon Parling III
Former Kenai resident Leslie (Butch) Gordon Parling III died unexpectedly in Tehachapi, Calif., on Thursday, Dec. 4, 2003. He was 59.

Government bodies hiring lobbyists to get public funds bad policy
There is something unsettling about government entities using the public's money to hire lobbyists to wrangle even more of the public's money from government entities. To the average person, it looks something like feeding time at the trough.

Hispanics influencing politics
While much of the political world's attention is focused on the battle in Iowa among Democratic presidential contenders, a commonly ignored but important story is unfolding in Republican circles. The GOP is moving quietly but forcefully to build and consolidate a viable political relationship with Hispanic Americans.

Campaign will consume millions
WASHINGTON President Bush's lack of a Republican challenger and the expected early sorting out of a Democratic foe points to a protracted general election campaign, challenging both parties to find creative ways to hold voters' attention.

Natural gas authority should do more than 'try' to live within law
Government should operate in the open.

Around the Peninsula
PFLAG to meetSocial Security reps to visit peninsulaSoroptimists to meetWomen's club plans brunchRep. Wolf to hold town meeting

Around the Peninsula
Blood Bank to hold open houseDrivers safety class scheduledConservation and development meeting slatedParents support group to meetFish and Game committee to meetCharter school informational meeting plannedFamily day at Challenger Center setFine wine, gourmet appetizer fund-raiser planned

Students are invited on a field trip to H2Oasis in Anchorage at 10 a.m. Friday. The cost is $8 for students ages 3 to 12, and $11 for those 13 and older. To sign up, call the office at 262-6315.

Sears Elementary
Sears Elementary will host a community informational meeting on the possibility of an arts and sciences charter school in Kenai at 5:15 p.m. Thursday. The future of the existing magnet classrooms also will be addressed. All central peninsula parents and community members are invited to attend.

Distinguished principals program announced
The National Association of Elementary School Principals is seeking nominations for the 21st annual National Distinguished Principals' Award and the Alaska Distinguished Principals' award, recognizing exemplary school leadership.

Kalifornsky Beach Elementary
First-graders continued reviewing machines and started editing book pages in writing. On Monday, they celebrated Student In Good Standing participation with ice cream treats. Every student in class was a Student In Good Standing.

North Star Elementary
This is the last week to vote for a new name for the consolidated North Star and Nikiski elementary school. The community is invited to help select a name. Interested people may vote at either North Star or Nikiski Elementary until Friday and from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday at Nikiski Fire Station 1.

Cook Inlet Academy
Students of the Week are Patrick Michels, for being a great listener; Noah Leaf, for always being a happy helper; Amber Hamar, for improvement in dribbling a ball; Kayla Moore, for friendliness; Mac Wynkoop, for great behavior and attitude; Bethany Estes, for eagerness in participation of vertebrates discussion; Albert White, for excellence in Bible memorization; Jessie McNutt, for getting 100 percent on a math test; and Haley Michel, for doing an awesome science presentation.

Tustumena Elementary
The following Tustumena students participated in the Elk's Hoop Shoot last Saturday at Soldotna Middle School: Dalton Pearson, Kailiee Skjold, Cameron Harvey, Casee Penrod, Derek Pace and Shelby Dykstra. Congratulations to all six young athletes for their outstanding efforts this year.

Grace Lutheran
The students of Grace Lutheran enjoyed preparing a Christmas luncheon as a gift of service to their parents. Families, together with the Grace Lutheran preschoolers, gathered at noon on the last day of school before vacation to enjoy a student-prepared sloppy joe lunch. The afternoon featured classroom gift exchanges, carol singing and Christmas bingo. Students also participated with recitations and songs in the Christmas Eve candlelight service.

Wings Christian Academy
The third quarter has started, and that means a new theme for physical education. This quarter, Mr. Ruffridge is teaching the Upper Learning Center students how to bowl. They are learning all the correct techniques and having a lot of fun.

Kalifonsky Christian
After Christmas break, the students at Kalifonsky Christian School are getting back to work. Mrs. East's preschool through second-grade class will follow Stanley Lamb Chop's (a flat story book character) travels around the world. He is starting his journey to the United Kingdom and being sent around the globe while the student track his journey on a world map.

Travel contest offers scholarships
The AAA Travel High School Challenge, a national contest designed to expose students to the importance of travel and geographic literacy, is offering scholarships totaling $156,000 and more than 50 expense-paid trips to Universal Studios in Orlando, Fla.

Sharing a good book
Ann Takata loves a good book.

Mountain View Elementary
Mrs. Keating's fifth-graders are selling McDonald Peelers at $10 for 30 peelers. For each item you buy, you get a like item for free. Profits go to the class field trip at the end of the year. If you'd like to buy a packet, contact Mrs. Keating at the school or ask one of the students in her class.

Time remains to register for spring semester classes
Classes started this week at KPC, but that doesn't mean you have missed your opportunity to attend college this semester. The late registration period is designed to allow students, who for whatever reasons weren't able to make it to walk-in registration, to get into the classes they want.

Redoubt Elementary
The site council meets at 3:45 p.m. today in the conference room.

Students of the Month
The following students were named Citizens of the Month at Sterling Elementary School and Bus Students of the month at Sterling Elementary School.

Sterling Elementary
Mark your calender for I-Safe (Internet Safety) training from 7 to 8 p.m. Jan. 22. I-Safe is to assist parents in helping their children understand Internet safety. Parents will learn what they can do to help protect their children while they are using the Internet. This evening is being made possible by the Title I program.

Kenai Middle
The student council will sponsor a KMS Family Night from 5:30 to 7 Feb. 5. A parent or guardian must accompany students who attend. Hot dogs, chips, cookies and beverages will be served in the commons for $1 from 5:30 to 6 p.m. Activities will be from 5:45 to 7 p.m. Activities include Bingo, boat building, an art station, paper rocket building, "sink or swim," a hoop shoot and use of the climbing wall.

IDEA (Interior Distance Education of Alaska)
Today, the Wednesday activity is board games from 2:30 to 4:30 p.m. at the IDEA office. Next Wednesday's activity is scrapbooking.

Soldotna Middle School
Make sure to check out the Community Schools brochure for a class about homework management for parents. This class will be facilitated by two teachers from SMS, Mrs. Shirley and Ms. Heite. The class will help parents develop effective homework management strategies. Parents will learn to monitor homework time, help children develop effective homework habits, plan long-term assignments, evaluate the effectiveness of assignments and construct effective intervention plans with their child's school. Sharing of problems and solutions will be encouraged. The class is open to adults with a 20-family or 40-person maximum. It will meet from 7 to 8:30 p.m. Thursdays for six weeks beginning Jan. 29 in Soldotna Middle School room 1. The cost is $30, and preregistration is required through Soldotna Community Schools.

Kenai Montessori Preschool
Thanks to all the parents and children who attended the winter solstice celebration event Dec. 21. The children were studying the solar system and how the earth's rotation affects weather, tides and daylight in Alaska.

Skyview High
Skyview held the 13th annual Peninsula Challenge last weekend, hosting seven other schools. Skyview would like to thank the following sponsors and volunteers for making it a great tournament: Wells Fargo Bank, Godfathers, Coca-Cola, Kaladi Brothers, Skyview Basketball Booster Club, Janet St. Clair, Charlene Smith, Emily Sims, Skyview culinary arts students, Wade Marcuson and Angie Wheat.

Swimming lessons for preschool-age children are offered from noon to 12:45 p.m. through Jan. 21. The cost is $25 per child. If your child can touch the bottom of the pool at the shallow end, you need not get in the pool with him or her. For more information, contact Ginny Johnson at (907) 567-3730.

Schools turn to marketing deals
In California's Scotts Valley, the local school district faces the prospect of slashing $900,000 from a $15 million budget next year. So the district hired a marketing firm to find companies willing to sponsor a new swim center or theater at the local high school.

Soldotna High
The band hosts its annual dessert concert Thursday night in the SoHi theater.

Ad call brings out student creativity
BRAINERD, Minn. When Cheryl Craig, coordinator of the Crow Wing County Teen Pregnancy Prevention Coalition, asked area high school art students to create movie theater screen advertisements about teen pregnancy prevention, she wasn't sure what type of response she would receive.

No school Friday, Monday
Public schools in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District will be closed Friday for an end-of-semester in-service and Monday for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Classes resume Tuesday.

First-generation college students struggle with finals
KUTZTOWN, Pa. Anticipating good news, Victor Nivar leaped over a row of seats and bounded up the steps of the lecture hall, positioning himself among the first to check the psychology exam scores posted on the rear wall.

For rural elderly, a patchwork of care
WHEATON, Minn. Alice Heggen just turned 100, but she still lives on her own in an apartment here, getting by on natural grit, some good friends and neighbors, and the charity of small-town Minnesota.

Senior Briefs
What activities are available for our area seniors.

Senior Menus
What's on the menu for our area seniors.

Sports Briefs
Homer Christian wins End of RoadKPHA Squirt B drops two in AnchorageLemieux has hip surgeryLaettner violates drug policyHenin-Hardenne opens 2004 with win

Houston lifts Rocket off retirement chair
NEW YORK The Rocket splashed down in Spacetown on Monday, and Vladimir Guerrero finalized his big deal with the Anaheim Angels.

Lakers' Bryant injured in victory
LOS ANGELES Lakers star Kobe Bryant sprained his surgically repaired right shoulder Monday night and sat out the second half of Los Angeles' 89-79 victory over Cleveland,

Pass-happy Rockets break down Wizards
WASHINGTON Yao Ming scored 14 of his 21 points in the third quarter, and the Houston Rockets had a season-high 27 assists in Tuesday night's 93-80 victory over the Washington Wizards.

The Next Level
Seward's Smith scores silver medal

Maddux, Rodriguez top list of free agents
NEW YORK Now that most of the top stars have signed, Greg Maddux and Ivan Rodriguez are the biggest names left on the free-agent market.

Manning should be wearing a cape
Before nearly every play, Peyton Manning barks instructions to his teammates. He waves and points. Put a baton in his hand, and he could be an orchestra conductor.

Sports Briefs
William Kleedehn wins Copper Basin 300Selig mostly mum on RoseJayson Williams' trial beginsUConn still on top of men's Top 25Duke widens lead; Villanova joins Top 25

Texas knocks Wake from unbeaten status
AUSTIN, Texas Freshman P.J. Tucker scored 21 points and No. 18 Texas cranked up the nation's highest-scoring offense to hand No. 4 Wake Forest its first loss of the season, 94-81 Tuesday night.

Penguins extend Philly's misery
PHILADELPHIA Dick Tarnstrom and Tom Kostopoulos scored power-play goals, and the Pittsburgh Penguins held off Philadelphia 2-1 Monday night, extending the Flyers' winless streak to five games (0-4-1).

Rangers still own Islanders
NEW YORK Tom Poti had a goal and assist, and defense partner Brian Leetch set up two scores to lead the Rangers to their fourth straight victory over the Islanders, 4-1 Tuesday night.

Marino returns to Miami
DAVIE, Fla. Tall and tan, the most prolific passer in NFL history stood before a cluster of microphones, looking very much like he did during his final season four years ago.

Bryant sidelined with sprained shoulder
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. Kobe Bryant joined Shaquille O'Neal and Karl Malone on the sidelines Tuesday, leaving Gary Payton as the only healthy Los Angeles Lakers superstar.

Persevering through adversity forges Allemann's character
Most high school coaches have to worry about how a player will handle the adversity that is sure to come throughout the season.

Skyview skaters top SoHi
The Skyview Panthers notched a North Star Conference victory Tuesday, defeating the Soldotna Stars 4-2 at the Soldotna Sports Center.

Singh serious about bid to be No. 1
KAPALUA, Hawaii A new PGA Tour season brought a familiar name to the top of the leaderboard.

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