Friday, March 3, 2006

Volunteers scramble to put Games to bed for athletes
Where chemical formulas and laws of physics once strove to penetrate the craniums of Kenai Central High School students, the mechanics of bunk beds and the covering of mattresses fully occupied those same heads on Thursday.

Safety first
With the Arctic Winter Games fast approaching, security officials are continuing to check and recheck a long list of preparations, ensuring the athletic event runs smooth.

Business Briefs
Area chambers set schedules Frontier elects new officers Challenger center has new director Canned food drive events planned Business start-up instruction offered Seafood training available Allstate opens new office in Soldotna Builders seek entries for Parade of Homes Natural gas authority to meet Unemployment tax refunds available

Johnny and June ‘Cash’ in on a winning combination
With the Oscars breathing down our neck, and with the usual dearth of high quality films at the box office this time of year, I decided to switch gears and review a relevant DVD release this week. Though I would have preferred to see this on the big screen, “Walk the Line” is one of those films that loses very little in the translation to your living room.

Game for entertainment
It would be hard to find more enthusiastic supporters of the Arctic Winter Games than the members of the indigenous rock group Pamyua (pronounced “bam-u-ah”).

What’s Happening
Best Bets Events and Exhibits Entertainment Upcoming events Films Down the Road Anchorage events

Art Briefs
Writers group to meet Fairbanks poetry contest submissions sought Stained glass classes offered Young writers, performers have chance to play Kids’ art wanted Arts scholarships available Carving workshops slated Art for kids classes planned Dance club seeks members Storytellers wanted LeeShore Center sponsors design contest Writers contest accepting submissions Winter drama camp announced Kenai photos wanted

Reader: Keep ports under our control
Let's give control of these ports to second generation Americans who have university degrees in that field. Keep vital jobs at home!

Volunteers make a good team
The Boys and Girls Club sends out a big thank you to the positive and caring individuals who took time out of their busy lives to coach a team in third- and fourth-grade basketball league.

Efforts for seniors go a long way
On behalf of present and future members of the Sterling Senior Center, we want to express a heartfelt thank you to the seniors of Sterling who conceived, planned and performed in the fundraising effort called “South Pacific in Sterling” on Feb. 18.

Dance company literally has a ball
The Peninsula Artists in Motion (PAM) Dance Co. hosted its first winter ball Feb. 4. We had a ball! The support of many individuals helped to make this event a success. PAM's mission to increase the opportunities for dance within our community, not only performance recitals but also dance events such as the ball, is to us a cultural necessity.

Soldier salutes community
My family and I would like to thank the people of the Kenai Peninsula for all the support you gave to us during my deployment in Iraq. Your thoughts, prayers, e-mails, letters and packages you sent to me were much appreciated.

Civil Rights Day should be recognized
Since it is a conflict of interest to have another holiday, I would like to see the name of Rosa Parks, the mother of the civil rights movement, written in the calendar as an unobserved holiday. But this will beat the meaning of writing to you. I would really like to see her remembered. Since there are so many holidays in a year already, I would like to see her remembered as a civil rights leader.

CIRCAC grateful to those who participated in discussion
The Cook Inlet Regional Citizens’ Advisory Council (CIRCAC) would like to extend its sincere appreciation to all who attended our panel discussion last Friday on the recent Seabulk Pride incident.

Reader remembers Gowdy
I was on my way to catch a flight at Orlando International Airport in early 1985 when I saw legendary television announcer Curt Gowdy walk past me. Despite being honored with the Ford Frick Award by the MLB Hall of Fame the previous year, Gowdy was by then considered “over the hill” and banished from live telecasts, probably due to his advancing years interfering with his ability to remember certain players’ names. He was at that time still narrating the successful “American Sportsman” television program with his friendly, distinctive voice.

Kenai loses court appeal
Controversy over Kenai’s decision to turn over management of its recreation center to the Boys and Girls Clubs of the Kenai Peninsula died down more than two years ago, but the city has once again found itself on the losing side of a court decision on the issue.

Agrium gets its gas back
Supplies of natural gas have migrated back to the Agrium plant and rebooted production. But due to a spell of cold weather, production levels have dropped to a reduced rate.

Fugitive killed in Homer; state troopers investigating
Alaska State Troopers have begun an investigation into a shooting incident at Homer Airport early Wednesday evening between police officers and a wanted fugitive that left the fugitive dead and a toddler with him wounded.

Marine expert: Safety not ‘rocket science’
The Kenai Peninsula dodged a bullet when the Seabulk Pride ran aground near Nikiski last month and was successfully refloated without a major oil spill. The risk of such future disasters can be reduced by 80 to 90 percent, marine safety expert Rick Steiner said last week.

School budget gets once over from assembly
Running district schools could cost as much as $7.6 million more next year, education officials told the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly last week, and deciding where to spend and where to cut is going to be no picnic.

Tyvek, boards can’t stay for long
Many Alaskans jokingly refer to blue tarps as roofing material and Tyvek as Alaska siding, but the weather-resistant building wrap won’t fly as a permanent protective coating in Kenai’s business district.

Women ready to ride for cancer
Women are gearing up and revving their engines to take on the snowy Caribou Hills and support cancer patients at the same time, at this weekend’s Way Out Women annual snowmachine ride.

Man dies in Homer shootout
Alaska State Troopers are investigating a shootout at Homer Airport early Wednesday evening between law enforcement officers and a wanted fugitive that left the fugitive dead and a toddler with him critically wounded.

UA land: Facts and fiction: Questions around campus have answers one might not expect
Every year at this time, I hear various comments around the Kenai Peninsula about University of Alaska funding. Along with this discussion comes the inevitable questioning of why does the university need as much as they’re asking for; aren’t there other funding sources available?

The muskrat winter Olympics: Endurance under the ice
I noticed while watching the 20th Winter Olympics at Turin, Italy, that the winning times of speed skating events were separated by mere hundredths of seconds. For example, only 0.09 seconds separated gold medal winner Enrico Fabris from silver medal winner Shani Davis in the 1,500-meter event.

Alaska has largely sidestepped the establishment of noxious weed species, a problem that costs millions in taxpayer dollars in the United States every year. But weeds are gaining ground and if not controlled could plunder Alaska’s economy and biodiversity.

Around the Peninsula
Budget survey deadline today Solar classes set to shine Historical Society to meet Tropical stories planned Special services set

Around the Peninsula
CPGH board of directors to meet AWG ceremony dress rehearsal set Global warming to be discussed Cold climate building workshop set Cancer fundraiser slated Fundraiser dinner primed

Sports Briefs
The Cook Inlet Academy boys and girls basketball teams picked up victories over Nikolaevsk Thursday in Soldotna.

Church Briefs
Prayer workshop slated Addictions group meets Clothes available Baha’i classes continue Kenai Aglow meeting slated Soldotna aglow to meet Nikiski holds bible study Group studies book of Joshua Band concert set to play

Dumb luck or intelligent design?
The trial against the school board in Dover, Pennsylvania for presenting Intelligent Design as an alternative to evolution has finally ended. Intelligent design is a growing movement among scientists and others that offer an alternative to evolution as the reason for our existence. Writing about the trial’s conclusion, Melissa Nann Burke of the Legal Intelligencer says:

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