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Tuesday, March 2, 2004

Reporter's notebook from Fort McMurray:
Before starting today's Reporter's Notebook, I probably should take a moment for the legal disclaimer. In an effort to avoid an international incident ala late night talk show host Conan O'Brien, let me just say, I am not making fun of Canada, Canadians or unfamiliar cultures. Rather, these observations on life in Alberta are an attempt to educate Kenai Peninsula readers about the cultural differences between the two regions and poke fun at my own lack of knowledge, as well as the many moments I have found myself feeling like an idiot.

Peninsula results for Sunday
The Arctic Winter Games events kicked off Sunday in Fort McMurray, Alberta, Canada. Kenai Peninsula youth are participating on a number of Team Alaska teams.

Different worlds: Games open doors to learn others' cultures
FORT MCMURRAY, Alberta, Canada Beating sticks and shaking rattles to keep time, a group of Kenaitze Indian Tribe drummers and dancers shared their traditional songs and dances with residents at Northern Lights Regional Health Centre in Fort McMurray on Monday.

Games bring big bucks to communities
FORT MCMURRAY, Alberta, Canada Kenai Peninsula officials have estimated the 2006 Arctic Winter Games will bring between $10 million and $20 million to the community during the two-week cultural and athletic exchange two years from now.

Cubs' Prior must rest Achilles'
When the Chicago Cubs start spring training games, Mark Prior will be resting his right foot instead of firing fastballs.

ACS contributes connectivity for Challenger Center
Keeping the Challenger Learning Center of Alaska connected and making E-missions possible in remote locations is expensive. An expense that Alaska Communications Systems is happy to be able to contribute, "We're very proud to able to support the Challenger Center for another year.

Local nursing students receive scholarships
It will take thousands of communities like the Kenai Peninsula, and thousands more individuals like Don Bradford to meet the nursing shortage that is facing our nation, but the local effort of the Nursing Education Consortium is having an impact.

7th Annual Trustworthy Ice Fishing Derby draws to a close
It's been a great winter for ice fishing, and a banner year for the 7th Annual Trustworthy Ice Fishing Derby. Scott Miller, store manager of the family owned Trustworthy Hardware Store in Soldotna, created the Derby and says its been growing year after year.

Standing with the Shadows
So when did you decide what you wanted to be when you grew up, what school would be best to help you meet your goals, and what any of your interests were really like in a 9 to 5 setting.

Peninsula AWG delegation heads to Wood Buffalo
What is probably the largest and broadest representative delegation of Kenai Peninsula residents ever assembled in one place other than here at home, is now in Wood Buffalo, Alberta, Canada for the 2004 Arctic Winter Games (AWG).

AWG 2006 Host Society names Sports Manager
In just a few weeks the 2004 Arctic Winter Games in Alberta Canada will be history, and the eyes and hopes of athletes from participating nations will turn to the Kenai Peninsula, host for the 2006 Games.

NOW PLAYING: The Passion of the Christ
Growing up in a moderate Baptist family, we were always taught that Jesus died for our sins. While the concept was difficult to understand (why?) the implications were not. Someone, God, had actually died for us.

Salmon that escape into watershed aren't wasted; they feed ecosystem
Re: Fishers want borough backing for suit

Many contribute to success of Alaska Junior Miss program
The Alaska Junior Miss Scholarship Program held its annual competition Feb. 7 at the Soldotna High School Auditorium. Twenty-three high school seniors from around the state converged on the peninsula for a week-long stint to compete for the coveted title of Alaska's 2004 Junior Miss. Because we are a nonprofit organization, it takes the generosity of others to make our program a success. Therefore, I would like to thank the following individuals and businesses for their contributions:

Ski meet goes smoothly, thanks to terrific community participation
The Regions III Nordic Ski Meet recently was hosted by Skyview High School and staff along with our very supportive community. Thirteen teams participated in this two-day event. Congratulations to all the skiers who competed and for those who headed to Fairbanks for the state finals.

Better question on fish lawsuit is: Should borough invest in itself?
After reading your editorial Wednesday I just thought perhaps it was because of the lackluster response to the recent story by Hal Spence. In the economic insert Thursday, I saw a full front page on the Kenai Landing and only a couple of paragraphs on Kenai Wild and the salmon branding program.

Helping fishing group with lawsuit would be poor use of borough funds
I attended the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly meeting on Feb. 17. I listened to the Cook Inlet Fisherman's Fund, which claims that the state of Alaska has financially damaged them by placing restrictions on their commercial fishing like it has done to many other fishery uses.

Too many people destroying too much habitat, hurting fish and game
The Native Americans now in Alaska's wilderness and those in dire need should be the only people to receive the right to subsistence living. Alaska's precious predators are now becoming victims to non-Native people and their explosive ways. The game numbers remaining the same or decreasing is because of these people taking more than they need or there sheer unnatural numbers impacting the environment for what they need.

Donations will benefit kids
Soldotna Little League's board of directors would like to express their deepest gratitude to the family and friends of Lowell Gdula who so generously donated money in his loving memory to this nonprofit organization. These funds will benefit hundreds of children in our community who take part in Little League baseball and softball.

Gibson's film an embarrassment to informed people of faith
"The Passion of the Christ" is a very disappointing movie. It is not really about the suffering Christ who endures humiliation for me. It is a brutal horror film that could be called, "The Torture of Christ."

Crime Stoppers alert
Central Peninsula Crime Stoppers is offering a reward for information leading to the arrest of suspects involved in the theft of aviation headsets from aircraft and buildings at the Homer Airport.

Trees may be finding way to fight back against beetle
Alone, standing green and tall, a healthy white spruce seems almost out of place amid the stand of graying deadwood killed by bark beetles.

Dead trees ignite talks
If its vegetable matter, it can ignite, and in that regard, fire has always threatened the Kenai Peninsula spruce forest and the human communities built in and around it.

School board to discuss cuts
Area schools will have their first look at what next year's budget may bring as the district struggles to bridge its ever-expanding budget gap.

Director: Axing AHFC not going to save money
The executive director of the Alaska Housing Finance Corp. responded last week to suggestions that cutting the state lending organization is the answer to the state's fiscal problems.

James B. McMahan
Sterling resident James B. McMahan died Saturday, Feb. 28, 2004, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. He was 76.

James Blake McMahan
Sterling resident James Blake McMahan died Saturday, Feb. 28, 2004, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna from a lengthy illness. He was 76.

Rodney Craig Nicholas
Rodney Craig Nicholas died Tuesday, Feb. 24, 2004, at Providence Hospital in Anchorage of complications from a long illness. He was 51.

Bartlett's predictions come true
When the 55 "elected" delegates met in Fairbanks to frame Alaska's Constitution, they predicted that someday outside interests would hold sway over Alaska's elected officials and resources. In anticipation, they built protective barriers into our constitution.

Laws bad substitute for good parenting
Here's a tip for moms and dads who are getting a little tired of all their parental duties: Get a legislator to sponsor a bill so someone else will pick up your responsibilities.

Greenspan speaks truth; Social Security can't last without some repair work What others say
Was that Social Security that Federal Reserve Board Chairman Alan Greenspan was talking to Congress about the other day, or did he set off weapons of mass destruction?

Democrats play it safe with guns
WASHINGTON Doug Hattaway tells a cautionary tale for the candidates of 2004 from the annals of the last campaign.

Soldotna teen prepares for trip to Guatemala
All roads do not lead home for Soldotna resident Eric Fischer. The path that he is taking heads to South America.

Around the Peninsula
Dr. Seuss birthday celebration set for todaySenior service board meeting slatedNikiski senior parents to meetHEA nomination deadline loomingCharter school to hold enrollment lotteryVillage Fair seeking vendors, volunteers

Community News
Little League seeking umpires Peninsula Oilers to offer scholarships Reading celebration planned Applications available for summer page program

Around the Peninsula
Kenai pool begins swim lessons Fish and Game committee meeting set Cooper Landing to hold winter festival Wolf to hold town hall meeting Scorekeepers clinic slated Preschool to hold fund-raiser

Theme for 9th annual conference for young women is 'Inside Out'
Soroptimist International of the Twin Cities will present its ninth annual Young Women's Confer-ence from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at Solid Rock Conference Center.

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

Club News
P.E.O. elects new officers

Births
Hailey Jo Alfson James S. Childers Jr. Melanie Kaye Misner Nathaniel Evan Villa

Peninsula People
Dent named Youth of the Year Area residents make deans lists

Senior Briefs
What activities are available for our area seniors

Federal judges leaving bench for greener pastures
PITTSBURGH U.S. District Judge Robert Cindrich has a lifetime job and could have retired in less than six years with full pay though not a pension of more than $155,000 a year.

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

President Bush calls for 'steroid summit'
The White House wants to organize a summit of representatives from the major sports leagues and the U.S. Olympic Committee to discuss steroid use by athletes.

Canadiens top Devils, stretch win streak to five
MONTREAL Jason Ward gave the Montreal Canadiens their latest last-minute win.

Lady Vols end SEC season undefeated
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. Shyra Ely scored 25 points and No. 2 Tennessee beat No. 15 LSU 85-62 Sunday to finish undefeated in Southeastern Conference play for the second straight season.

Blount's 20-20 propels Celtics past Orlando
BOSTON Mark Blount had career highs of 28 points and 21 rebounds the Celtics' first 20-20 game in 10 years and Boston scored the first 25 points of the fourth quarter Monday night in beating the Orlando Magic 117-96.

Barnes' play, not his deafness, draws attention on hardwood
Kenai Central senior Nick Barnes is deaf, but that's not the reason Barnes frequently draws attention on the basketball court.

Oklahoma State claims Big 12 championship
STILLWATER, Okla. Joey Graham scored 20 points, including a thunderous dunk on an alley-oop pass from John Lucas seconds before the buzzer, helping No. 8 Oklahoma State claim a share of its first Big 12 title with a 76-67 victory Monday night over 10th-ranked Texas.

Smoltz says tough drug policy needed
John Smoltz is one player who's clearly concerned about steroids in baseball.

McNamara comes up big for Syracuse
PITTSBURGH Gerry McNamara, held scoreless by No. 3 Pittsburgh for the equivalent of nearly a game and a half, hit a go-ahead 3-pointer and two key free throws in overtime and Syracuse ended the Panthers' 40-game home winning streak with a 49-46 upset Sunday.

Raptors drop ninth straight to Celtics
TORONTO Paul Pierce scored 12 of his 22 points in the fourth quarter, helping the Boston Celtics beat Toronto 91-82 Sunday and hand the Raptors their season-worst ninth straight loss.

Ilya's still the man
ATLANTA Ilya Kovalchuk bounced back from a one-game benching to score his NHL-leading 34th and 35th goals, and the Atlanta Thrashers held off the New York Rangers 3-2 Sunday.

Sports Briefs
Judge delays testimony of Bryant's accuserTexas' Crocker sets 50-meter butterfly record

Tiger tames Love to take match title
CARLSBAD, Calif. Tiger Woods made it sound so simple, even after making it look so hard.

Anxiety pervades in Athens
The Olympic stadium and swimming pool remain roofless. Housing is unfinished. The marathon route is still not all paved.

Portis agrees to deal with Redskins
On a day other teams were figuring out ways to cut costs to get under the salary cap, the Washington Redskins as usual were spending money.

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