Monday, February 16, 2004

Yankees on verge of signing A-Rod
NEW YORK Alex Rodriguez is one step from New York.

Yankees pursue A-Rod
NEW YORK (AP) Alex Rodriguez was just a day or two away from joining the Yankees in a trade that will surely rank as one of the biggest in baseball history.

Spring training opens with optimism and a dark cloud
A year ago, right after flipping his Mustang on a California highway and somehow surviving the crash with hardly a scratch, a 21-year-old lefty who had never pitched above Class A walked into his first major league camp. He was promptly assigned No. 77.

NOW PLAYING: 50 First Dates
About fifteen or twenty minutes into Adam Sandler's Valentine's Day offering,

Fiscal solutions presented so far do nothing to diversify economy
Gov. Frank Murkowski hand-picked seven people to select 48 more people and orchestrate a 55-delegate conference, representing a wide cross-section of Alaska to work his agenda.

National media should let go of president's service record
I would like to put George W. Bush's (indeed all junior officers') service in the late Vietnam era of the early 1970s in perspective.

Junior wins Daytona
DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. Dale Earnhardt Jr. nearly traded paint with the car ahead of him, snatching the lead at the Daytona 500 with a brash, fearless move.

Looking like breakup
Motorists sail through standing water on the Kenai Spur Highway in Kenai on Saturday afternoon. A high of 40 degrees was reported Saturday. Forecasters are calling for more typical February weather through Wednesday, with highs in the 20s and lows in the single digits. Warmer weather is again expected later in the week.

Area delegates laud outcome of conference
Returning from the three-day Conference of Alaskans in Fairbanks, the four delegates from the Kenai Peninsula lauded the unprecedented summit, saying it had gone much better than expected.

Poll: Borough residents don't want to pay for more services
Mitigating land-use conflicts, supporting economic development, expanding fire and emergency services, and aiding senior service programs were among the issues raised most often and seen as important in a telephone survey conducted by a contractor working on the update of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Comprehensive Plan.

Home sustains substanial damage in Saturday blaze
A two-story residence with an attached garage sustained substantial fire damage early Saturday afternoon.

Assembly considers betting on gambling
Their cards should be on the table Tuesday when members of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly vote on a resolution supporting state legislation that would legalize a new form of gambling in Alaska.

Adding some kick to winter activities
Norma Smith had never stood on the runners of a kicksled before she tried one out at the Kenai Peninsula Winter Games. Three hours later, she entered a race and kicked 150 yards across the finish line.

School board again talks finances
The future finances and program offerings in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District once again will be a topic of discussion for the district's board of education.

Many offices closed for Presidents Day
Most government offices, including federal, state, borough and city offices, will be closed today in observance of Presidents Day. Many financial institutions also are closed.

Cold cash needed for center fix
Hundreds of hockey players, coaches and fans from around the state flocked to the Soldotna Sports Center over the weekend to watch what's arguably the crown jewel of Alaska's high school sports season, the state 4A hockey championships.

David Allen Pat Colby
Kenai resident David Allen "Pat" Colby died Thursday, Feb. 12, 2004, at his home in Kenai. He was 66.

Kathryn Marie Dent
Kathryn Marie Dent died Tuesday, Jan. 27, 2004, in her home in Montrose, Colo. She was 45.

Debra C. Byers
Sterling resident Debra C. Byers died of natural causes Monday, Feb. 9, 2004, at her home in Sterling. She was 43.

Lyndsey Marie Kvasnikoff
Former Kenai resident Lyndsey Marie Kvasnikoff died Sunday, Feb. 8, 2004, at her home in Kirkland, Wash. She was 18.

Lyndsey Marie Kvasnikoff
Former Kenai resident Lyndsey Kvasnikoff died Sunday, Feb. 8, 2004, at her home in Kirkland, Wash. She was 18.

Conference did its work; now it's time for legislators to act
Congratulations are in order to those who participated in last week's Conference of Alaskans. In three days, the 55 delegates of all political persuasions from all regions of the state were able to reach consensus on some of the thorniest questions facing the state.

Text of Conference of Alaskans letter
Fellow Alaskans, The 55 of us have spent the past three days in Fairbanks at the Conference of Alaskans called by Governor Murkowski to consider the fiscal future of our state and the proper role of the Permanent Fund in that future. We believe there are five basic facts that Alaskans must and do acknowledge.

Residents must come together to avert pending financial disaster
Every day we are thankful to be Alaskans. We have the most beautiful place to live in the world and the best neighbors. We are most proud of the Alaska tradition of helping each other when times are tough. Think of the 1964 earthquake. Alaskans put the state back together by facing the challenge head-on and working side by side.

Valentine's Day full of irony
Once in a lifetime, there comes a day when the stars align in just the right manner, the cosmic powers that be become benevolent toward your lowly mortal soul and the fickle Fates decide to stop thumbing their noses at you and cut you a break.

Probe into intelligence on Iraq must help U.S. rebuild trust with others
Presidential commissions can play a key role in analyzing White House scandals. The 1986-87 Tower Commission investigated the Iran-Contra affair and concluded that by ''failing to insist upon accountability,'' President Reagan permitted dishonest staff members to try to sell arms to Iran to gain release of U.S. hostages and illegally fund Nicaraguan rebels.

Soldotna chamber of honors residents for service
Honoring a number of community members whose contributions to Soldotna go far beyond the typical, the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce handed out its annual awards earlier this month.

Club News
Soroptimists present annual awardsElks table tennis results announcedSPCA to hold fund-raiserHistory center, Totem Tracers plan open house

Around the Peninsula
Fishing cooperative lecture plannedReception for T-200 volunteers setPeace vigil plannedSwim coaches neededHealth center plans board meetingRoad service subcommittee to meetKenai River advisory board meeting slatedSoHi selling discount cardsInternet class slated

Around the Peninsula
Health center closed todayChildbirth classes offeredSoroptimists plan board meetingFrontier Community Services to hold blood driveMaster gardeners to discuss water gardensKPC showcase to present Irish musicNikiski talent show entrants soughtSafety day participants sought

Peninsula People
Gibbs makes honor societyFranzmann named to Alumni Hall of FameSoldotna couple serving in ArmyArea residents make deans' lists

Swanson, Guido wed in Kenai
Brittany L. Swanson and Evan R. Guido were married at 6 p.m. Saturday, Nov. 15, 2003, at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center. The Rev. Charles Thornton officiated.

Widow's ring returned to daughter after 30 years
EVERETT, Wash. (AP) Shortly after her husband died, Judie Vann gave her prized gold and diamond ring to his best friend in appreciation for the kindness he had shown her family.

Zakikhani, Stonecipher marry in January
Sahar (Mim) Zakikhani and Nathon L. Stonecipher of Kenai were married Thursday, Jan. 22, 2004, at the Kenai Court House.

Groups offer awards, scholarships
Several area organizations are offering contests, awards and scholarships for area youth. Among them are:

Kit provides samples of basics to newlyweds
ARDMORE, Okla. A surprise awaits every couple that applies for a marriage license in the Carter County Clerk's Office on the second floor of the courthouse.

Community Schools
The following list of Soldotna Community Schools classes and activities beginning this week is printed as a reminder to preregistered participants. Anyone interested in a class or activity should call the Community Schools office at 262-6768.

Deaf couple hearing each other's voices for first time
MAYWOOD, Ill. The young couple sat in the small room, waiting for a click on the computer that would transform their lives.

Community News
Nikiski talent show entrants soughtReserve celebrates 5th anniversary, plans workshopUSS Maddox to hold reunion

Susie and Heath Strausbaugh Elizabeth and Nathan Dunn

Program aims to prepare women for great outdoors
In the area of Louisiana where Pam Godair lives, it hasn't snowed in more than 20 years. In Soldotna, where Godair spent last weekend, there was about four feet of snow on the ground with more falling as she was introduced to the winter weather activities of snowshoeing, cross-country skiing and dog mushing.

Keeping creepy crawly colonies
Bugs most people can't stand the sight of them and few would entertain the idea of intentionally keeping and breeding them in their homes.

My best friend
Kyle Caligan of Soldotna loves to hang out with his Bichon Frise, Max.

Shaq or Kobe, who takes over All-Star game in Los Angeles?
LOS ANGELES More often than not in recent years, the NBA All-Star Game has ended up revolving in some way around Kobe Bryant or Shaquille O'Neal.

Cyclist Pantani found dead
RIMINI, Italy (AP) Marco Pantani, the former Tour de France and Giro d'Italia winner who has been plagued by doping accusations and suspensions in recent years, was found dead Saturday, Italian news reports said.

Nikolaevsk boys beat Glenallen to win Nenana Tourney; Warrior girls place fifth
Jake Bailey poured in 30 points Saturday night to lead the Nikolaevsk Warriors boys basketball team to a victory over Glenallen and a first place finish in the Nenana Invitational Basketball Tournament.

Kenai's Barnes downs Nikiski at buzzer
Kenai Central senior Nick Barnes capped a stirring duel with Nikiski senior Jeremiah Taylor by nailing a buzzer-beating 3-pointer from deep in the corner to give the Kardinals a 68-65 nonconference victory Friday in Nikiski.

Sun shines on Kenai boys, SkyHi girls
Early Saturday morning, things were looking rather bleak at the Kenai Nordic Trails, as rain and unseasonably warm conditions had Kenai head coach Dave Feeken worried the 2004 Kenai Peninsula Borough Cross Country Championships might not go off.

Nikiski boys topple Seward
Jeremiah Taylor hit four 3-pointers on his way to a game-high 30 points as Nikiski picked up a District III/3A win Saturday at Seward, winning 65-57.

Avalanche crush Wings in front of Detroit faithful
DETROIT Alex Tanguay scored the go-ahead goal early in the third period and David Aebischer made 28 saves in the Colorado Avalanche's 5-2 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Saturday.

West Valley ends season of Wasilla
West Valley outshot Wasilla 46-18, and the Wolfpack scored three goals in the third period to put the consolation bracket game away Friday at the Soldotna Sports Center.

New Jersey steals late win from Kings
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. Defenseman Paul Martin scored 3:53 into overtime, lifting the New Jersey Devils to a 3-2 victory against the Los Angeles Kings on Sunday.

Thomas sends Van Horn to Bucks in three team deal
LOS ANGELES (AP) Isiah Thomas made yet another move Sunday in his transformation of the New York Knicks, trading Keith Van Horn to Milwaukee and acquiring Tim Thomas and Nazr Mohammed in a three-way deal that also involved Atlanta.

Homer cruises to fourth
The Homer High School Hockey team bumped Nikiski from the Greatland Conference Tournament, sticking the Bulldogs with a 5-4 overtime loss at Brett Memorial Ice Arena in Wasilla Friday.

N.C. State hands Duke first loss since Shootout
RALEIGH, N.C. Marcus Melvin scored 18 points and Julius Hodge made two clutch free throws with 7 seconds left to lead No. 21 North Carolina State to a 78-74 victory over top-ranked Duke on Sunday night, snapping the Blue Devils' 18-game winning streak.

Jones beats Richardson in miss-filled dunk contest
LOS ANGELES (AP) Indiana's Fred Jones won the NBA dunk contest practically by default on Saturday night, dethroning two-time champion Jason Richardson when both missed their final jams.

Lady Vols keep SEC streak alive with win
NASHVILLE, Tenn Tasha Butts scored a career-high 37 points with a nearly perfect performance, and No. 3 Tennessee extended its Southeastern Conference winning streak to 30 straight by beating Vanderbilt 94-88 Sunday.

Stanford, Saint Joseph's keep perfect records intact
BERKELEY, Calif. Rob Little scored 16 points to lead No. 2 Stanford to its school-record 21st straight victory, 69-58 over archrival California on Saturday night.

Kards stop Malemutes
The Kenai Central High School hockey team overcame a sluggish start to defeat Lathrop 6-2 in the consolation bracket of the Alaska School Activities Association State 4A Hockey Championships to advance to Saturday's fourth-place game.

Service edges West for another crown
The Service High School hockey team won its third straight state championship, and eighth overall, defeating West High School of Anchorage 2-1 in the Alaska School Activities Association State 4A Hockey Championships at the Soldotna Sports Center Saturday.

Kardinals drop fourth-place tilt
The good news for the Kenai Central High School hockey team was that it was able to extend its season as long as possible, playing its final game on the final day of the state tournament.

Sports Briefs
KPHA Squirt B drops two in AnchorageInformation meeting to be held on tax planTwins to hold informational meeting

'Long John' shows he's still got it
SAN DIEGO John Daly buried his face in his hands and cried, a winner again thanks to a shot that epitomizes his turbulent career.

West slams East in All-Star showdown
LOS ANGELES In an All-Star game that was all about dunks, Tim Duncan's made free throw a rarity on this evening with 2.1 seconds left provided an anticlimactic ending to the NBA's showcase event.

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