Wednesday, February 2, 2005

Knuppenburg captures Monopoly title
The traditional Peninsula Winter Games kick-off at the Aspen Hotel in Soldotna crowned a new Adult Monopoly Tournament champion last week.

Soldotna Chamber hosts elegant awards reception
The 46th Annual Soldotna Chamber of Commerce Awards Reception drew a capacity crowd to the Soldotna Sports Center last week.

I'm Loving It, Ronald McDonald visits Peninsula
One of the most well known celebrities of the new century visited the Kenai Peninsula last week, none other than Ronald McDonald himself.

Outdoors with John Perkovich
This time of year, many Alaskans head to Las Vegas for some sunshine, gambling and a show or two. At the end of next month our daughter, Kim goes to Vegas to shoot in the World Archery Festival.

10th Aluminum can round-up hits half-way mark
For a decade now the Kenai Peninsula Borough in cooperation with Peninsula Sanitation, Green Star, and Unocal Alaska has been sponsoring a Great Aluminum Can Round-Up.

Area gas prices out of whack; legal action should be taken
Is there a good class action tort lawyer on the Peninsula? If so, there is a bundle of money just sitting out there waiting for that hungry hard hitting lawyer. The Alaska Attorney General's office assures me there is nothing they can do for our problem. The price gouged gasoline-buying citizens of the Peninsula need better sharks than the local gasoline distributors.

Donations from many go toward helping community members
The Board of Directors for Love In the Name of Christ has begun the new year with a wonderful new executive director.

Bake sale generated aid for tsunami victims in Asia
I am writing this letter today to thank everyone who helped to make the garage/bake sale for the tsunami victims on Jan. 15 a great success. I would like to thank Winona Rich and Joann Earsley for their hard work and dedication to round up donations and baked goods, as well as put forth their time and efforts to set-up, run, and tear down the sale. I would also like to thank Sears Elementary and Kaleidoscope Charter for the use of the gymnasium as well as the wonderful staff that also donated items for the sale. I also would like to send out a huge thank you to The Peninsula Clarion and KSRM Radio for the publicity they gave us, as well as the community members who donated items.

School funding issue too important to ignore
As a member of this community, I am writing to express my concerns about the inadequate state funding for Alaskan schools and the effect it is having on our local district and ultimately all of our children.

Nikiski mentors deserve thanks for hard work with young people
I want to offer a hardy thank you to the five Aspirations mentors working at Nikiski Middle/Senior High School. These inspiring mentors, Amanda Feagin, Judene Van Cleave, Pam Clark, Bob Harrison and Marian Nickelson have been coming to the school weekly since early November to meet with their students.

Dinner auction supporters help with church's Mexico trip
Aspen Hotel, Peninsula Processing and Smokehouse, Signatures Salon, Soldotna Florist, Tesoro, Ultimate Tan, Longmere Grocery, Inner Peace Outer Beauty, Regal Foods, Acapulco Mexican Restaraunt.

Outstanding area youth receive Elks scholarships
The Soldotna Elks Scholarship Committee has completed the Elks National Foundation Most Valuable Student judging for Greater Soldotna area. The committee was extremely impressed with the sixteen outstanding students (five boys and eleven girls) who put forth applications.

Good morning. Words to ponder this week: "One may give without loving; but none can love without giving." — Author unknown

Last week I attended a most wonderful concert, the Soldotna High School Jazz Band dessert concert. The conductor-director Vernel Schneider had a great selection of music to compliment the jazz band musicians and vocalists.

Hi, neighbors. February already! The month brings to me the feeling that winter is half over. The lengthening of days makes a gardener start thinking of what seedlings to start first. There are some that need to be started very early or not at all.

Howdy, neighbors. I've been getting rose bush catalogs for a couple of months now, and that surely has to be a harbinger of spring, don't you think?

Cooper Landing
Hello, neighbors. George Siter, president of Cooper Landing Volunteer Fire Dept., reported on the current building construction and the future plans of the fire department to about 30 residents at the Jan. 27 Cooper Landing Community Club meeting.

Hi, neighbors. Allan Miller, who teaches at Sterling Elementary School, said his class has set up a lake ice setting station on Scout Lake. This is a project they are doing with Professor Martin Jeffries from University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Greetings from Kasilof. Welcome to February. It can only stay 28 days this year and for those who are counting. There's only 47 more days until spring officially begins.

Small boy faces big odds
Two-year-old Landon Rogers of Kenai has a mighty big spirit but without further specialized help, his tired and diminutive body might not be able to grow big enough to accommodate it.

Borough digging in to landfill job
On Jan. 1 of this year, the Kenai Peninsula Borough assumed operational control of the Central Peninsula Landfill, taking over from Waste Management Inc., a Houston firm that ran the landfill through its subsidiary Peninsula Sanitation.

Rocket launch slated around fisheries
KODIAK (AP) — Military officials are working around the cod and tanner crab fisheries to determine the best date for an upcoming target missile launch from the Kodiak Launch Complex.

Proposed budget earmarks $1.43 billion for peninsula
Gov. Frank Murkowski's proposed capital budget, which would spend nearly $1.43 billion on various projects around the state, includes funding for much-needed improvements and planning efforts on the Kenai Peninsula.

CPGH expansion contract draws healthy interest
Thirty-two contractors have expressed interest in working on the Central Peninsula General Hospital expansion, according to the hospital's top executive.

Construction labor shortage expected to only get worse
Brought on by the field's growth and an aging work force, thousands of jobs in Alaska's construction industry could go unfilled — or be filled with untrained or inexperienced workers — over the next eight years.

Community spirit gets Nikiski pastor service award
Denver Copeland loves finding opportunities for his church community to get involved. He was recognized for this attitude at the Nikiski Chamber of Commerce's 22nd annual awards banquet Saturday at Agrium Camp with the Community Service Award.

Skiing permit sparks lawsuit
Three environmental groups, along with several private citizens from Moose Pass, filed a lawsuit Tuesday in federal district court challenging a U.S. Forest Service permit that would expand the area available to heli-skiing in the Chugach National Forest.

Alaska to join slavery fight
Each year, an estimated 600,000 to 800,000 men, women and children around the world are spirited across international borders and into involuntary servitude and sexual slavery.

Room with a view
A bald eagle sits near a nest recently and takes in the unobstructed sights along Snug Harbor Road off the Sterling Highway in Cooper Landing. The nest has been active for years and is known among birders as a good spot to see eagles.

Velma Ruth Edens
Longtime Homer resident Velma Ruth Edens died Monday, Jan. 31, 2005, from cancer at the South Peninsula Hospital in Homer. She was 67.

Henry 'Hank' Brooner
Soldotna resident Henry "Hank" Brooner died Monday, Jan. 31, 2005, at Alaska Regional Hospital in Anchorage. He was 49.

Research into hydrogen well worth the price
Earlier this month, a spit-polished hydrogen-powered shuttle bus was introduced in Orlando. Eight of them are being developed for use in 2006 in one of the most traffic-intensive areas of the state. What was a twinkle in the eye of automakers just a few years ago is now a reality, albeit a small-fleeted reality.

Election proves democracy can work in Mideast
Ink-stained index fingers put their mark on history Sunday. Despite the ever-present threat of violence and death, Iraqis voted by the millions. Participation exceeded even the most optimistic forecasts.

Around the Peninsula
Retirement set for Harris Women's ski races Sunday NPRSA sets gym schedule Fish and Game to meet Caregiver support meeting planned

Around the Peninsula
Gillnet fishers to meet Soroptimist gathering planned Special Olympics set meeting SoHi parents of juniors to meet Teen night set

Soldotna man indicted for first-degree murder
The 22-year-old Soldotna man accused of stabbing his mother to death was arraigned on a first-degree murder charge in Kenai Superior Court on Sunday.

There are testing materials in the office but some need to be ordered now for arrival before testing.

Tustumena Elementary
Tustumena students will travel to Kenai Central High School on Thursday to attend the Alaska Jr. Theatre production "Sharon Katz and the Peace Train." This group has performed world-wide and features contemporary jazz-folk music. Students in grades four through six will attend the morning session and grades kindergarten through third will attend in the afternoon. Written parent permission is required.

Soldotna High
Seniors are asked to bring baby and senior pictures to Mrs. Smith in the library for the senior video.

There is a Web site available for you to see what is happening at school. Thanks to Stephani Green for her time in designing this. Visit

Hands-on class has helping hands
Sherri Baktuit, second-grade teacher at Soldotna Elementary School, has found that students respond to learning through real, personal experience and she decided to capitalize on that through a national program celebrating its 32nd year in Alaska.

Kenai Middle
Congratulations to Character Counts winners Audrey Forrest and Ben Gilman.

Grace Lutheran
Congratulations to seventh-grader Ryan Burow for winning the school spelling bee. He will represent the school at the state spelling bee in Anchorage.

Mountain View Elementary
Congratulations to students who participated in the Kenai Middle School-Mountain View Talent Show. First place went to Katarina Anderson, second to Keir Johnson and third to David Dormady.

Soldotna Middle
The spelling bee winner was Chelsea Magee and the runner-up was Jasmine Woodland. Chelsea will respresent the school at the state spelling bee in February.

Nikiski Middle-Senior High
Community members interested in the process of finding a new principal should attend a meeting with Dr. Peterson on Thursday at 6 p.m. in the library. Peterson also will take comments about this position at her e-mail address, by Feb. 11.

Wings Christian Academy
The students have begun practicing a play titled "The Tale of Three Trees." For the time being, practices will be held on Mondays from 3 to 5 p.m.

Interior Distance Education
The winter curriculum sale is Thursday from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Everything is 50 percent off the marked price.

Student seeks Alaska information
Dear Readers,

Ninilchik School
The following students earned ribbons for science fair projects:

Cook Inlet Academy
Congratulations to scholarship winners Jenna Zufelt and Thomas Minelga, who each will receive $1,500 from the Vera Horwath Memorial Scholarship; and Ramsey Arneson will receive $1,000 a year for two years from the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce. The students thank staff member Rhonda Orth for helping to prepare scholarship applications.

February Book It goals will be sent home Monday. Call the office for more information.

Kalifornsky Beach Elementary
Year books are available.

Redoubt Elementary
Teachers will send home conference forms this week which should be returned as soon as possible to confirm conference dates and times.

Nikiski North Star Elementary
Students will participate in a safe, low-impact sport ideal for cardiovascular and total-body conditioning. Students' social skills, direction following, sportsmanship and outdoor skills will be enhanced.

Kenaitze Head Start
Head Htart will be closed Thursday as the staff will attend "The Ten Habits of Successful Couples" class. The school will be open the rest of the week.

Kenai Central High
The school has been raising money for tsunami victim relief through its annual Penny Drive. The final count is over $500 was collected for Red Cross relief efforts.

Senior Briefs
Nikiski Soldotna

Senior Menus
Nikiski Soldotna

Sports views: NFL plays battle of the bulk
Brad Culpepper particularly remembers the Thanksgiving dinners, when he would stuff himself silly with food and then two hours later try to find a way to cram some more down his throat.

Worth the effort
For Kenai Central High School senior Kelsey Dunn, it's not about the basketball. It's about working toward goals and learning about herself as a person in the process.

Bizarre firing for groundbreaking coach
Sally Anthony's antics fit perfectly in the colorful, crazy history of the American Basketball Association, the red-white-and-blue ball league where fans once hanged an owner in effigy.

Sports Briefs
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Running back Emmitt Smith is expected to announce his retirement Thursday, according to several media reports.

Sixers sneak past Pacers 89-88
PHILADELPHIA — Kyle Korver made a go-ahead jumper with 6.5 seconds left, and Allen Iverson returned from a three-game absence to score 27 points in the Philadelphia 76ers' 89-88 victory over the Indiana Pacers on Monday night.

Hockey talks set to resume
NEW YORK (AP) — The NHL and the players' association will hold their next round of labor talks Wednesday in yet another undisclosed location.

White stays grounded amid growing X Games celebrity
ASPEN, Colo. — For this year's Winter X Games, snowboarder Shaun White is staying at a vast chateau that sits above this posh town, the walls covered with prints of him in action. There are slippers at the door for guests and jars filled with candy are everywhere.

Illinois bombards Michigan State
EAST LANSING, Mich. — Dee Brown backpedalled with his right arm held high and wrist cocked after making a 3-pointer.

T.O.'s subordinates as important as the man himself
And it worked so well for the Philadelphia Eagles that their other wide receivers barely got any notice — from the media and even from Donovan McNabb, who connected with Terrell Owens 77 times through 14 games. The other regular Philly wideouts had 75 catches scattered among them.

Orlando spoils LeBron's return
ORLANDO, Fla. — Steve Francis scored 30 points and tied a season high with 13 assists, and the Orlando Magic beat the Cleveland Cavaliers 105-102 on Tuesday night to spoil LeBron James' return.

Labor talks looking bleak
NEW YORK — The NHL and the players' association are now disputing whether they have anything to talk about.

Owens says he will play in Super Bowl
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. — Terrell Owens strolled onto the field, claiming a podium near the 25-yard line. It would have been more appropriate to put him right in the middle of the field.

Seward boys sink Soldotna
The host Seward boys basketball team defeated Soldotna 59-58 Tuesday night in nonconference action.

No. 3 Kansas wins
LAWRENCE, Kan. — Wayne Simien had 22 points and Aaron Miles had 14 points and 10 assists, rallying third-ranked Kansas to a 73-61 victory over Missouri on Monday night.

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