Thursday, March 3, 2011

Business Briefs

Chambers set schedules

Local Foster kids to get a helping hand from Royal Family Kids' Camps
Truths that led to the forming of the greatest country on earth, yet life isn't always fair and 235 years later our nation still has children that are abandoned, neglected, and abused. "Pretty rough way to start out life," says Devin Johnson, from Nikiski who first heard of Royal Family Kid's Camps when she was 16. "That's the daily story for the over 100 children on the Kenai Peninsula, who have been removed from their homes and placed into the foster care system. Once taken out of harmful situations however, what can a child do to overcome the massive emotional scarring that has taken place in their lives?" Johnson says one thing is a Royal Kid's camping experience.

2010 CFK winner Freya Chay honored with Alaska Spirit of Youth Award
As a KCHS freshman, Freya Chay's Caring for the Kenai (CFK) idea was to give private property owners an incentive to invest in alternative energy sources by making such investments free from added property value. Starting at the Borough Assembly level she learned it would take state legislation to make that possible. Through Rep. Mike Chenault and Kurt Olson, Chay lobbied to have an amendment added to an energy bill that then passed the Alaska House and Senate. After taking top prize in the 2010 CFK competition she was then able to convince Governor Parnell to sign the legislation into law, which he did last June.

Kenai Chamber Afterhours spotlights Kenai Catering
Anyone who didn't attend last month's Kenai Chamber Afterhours missed some delectable tastes unique to the Central Peninsula. The Kenai Chamber of Commerce meets weekly at the banquet room in the Kenai Merit Inn, but at one of the organization's periodic "Thursdays Afterhours" there were some mystery delights that were new to even the most dedicated luncheon attendees. Steve and Bobbi England, owners of Kenai Catering, formerly known as Charlotte's Kenai Catering, went to great lengths to stump even the most sophisticated pallet with their creations. "We had a lobster manicotti, ginger crab wantons, chicken salad croissant, and Bobbi and our pastry chef made some wonderful stuffed cupcakes, and of course our chocolate fondue fountain had some secret accents to richen the flavor as well for all our wonderful guests," said Steve.

U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski visits Peninsula for President's Day
U.S. Senator Lisa Murkowski was on the Peninsula for the President's Day holiday to visit with constituents about issues effecting Alaska and to thank her constituency for returning her to office in a history making election. "It's all about saying thank you to all Alaskans who took a risk and said the traditional way of advancing through an electoral process was not the way that 103,000 Alaskans were going to go and I am honored to be able to serve all Alaskans for another six years and I look forward to the opportunities and challenges as they will present themselves," said Senator Murkowski in an interview with the Dispatch.

Crisp Cod or Other Fish Steaks with Orange Sauce
About 1 cup all-purpose flour

Cooking fish for Lent: Starting with quality fish can be the most challenging step
Lent starts next week and people will be eating fish with greater frequency. But, Lent season or not, if folks were consistently happy with the fish offered at their supermarket, they'd be eating it more often. In "How To Cook Everything: 2,000 Simple Recipes for Great Food," the completely revised and expanded tenth anniversary edition to 1998s now classic "How To Cook Everything: Simple Recipes for Great Food," author Mark Bittman writes, "In fact, buying is the only challenging part of working with fish, and even that isn't that big a deal once you understand the basics." Those basics, as Bittman outlines, includes buying fish fresh with bright reflective skin, firm unmarred flesh and a fresh seawater smell. If you're lucky enough to live in a community with a fresh fish market, you'll enjoy buying your fish there. Whole fish will look alive when you buy it and everything presented to you will taste as good as it looks. You can trust the fish will be of high quality and suited to your purpose. Bring your recipe with you to the market if you wish. If they don't have exactly the fish you are looking for, they'll know what to offer instead. For the days you don't want to eat fish, Bittman's cookbook, as much a cooking manual as it is a cookbook, will guide you through cooking everything else. For more information about "How to Cook Everything" and other Bittman titles, visit his website at

Quick-Braised Fish Fillets or Steaks in Tomato Sauce
Extra virgin oil as needed

Keep your butts to yourself
Have you ever noticed all the cigarette butts left on road sides and trails? Or the person you see driving to work flicking their used butt out the window? Well, what most people don't understand is the environmental hazards those little butts pose to our pets and wildlife. Many smokers think that cigarette butts are harmless and biodegrade like paper. However, the filters actually contain plastic that can take up to 15 years to decompose. Not only that, as they rot they release into our environment the toxic chemicals that the filter was designed to trap -- deadly, cancer causing poisons such as nicotine, benzene and cadmium, arsenic, ammonia, acetone, sulfur, etc.

Former KPC student urges reconsideration of budget cuts
Dear Mayor Carey,

Recycling is the answer
I am writing regards to my project for school: Caring for Kenai. I have come up with an idea for recycling in the Kenai Peninsula. This is my letter for all peninsula residents.

Disappointed in airport vehicle impoundment
I returned to the Kenai Airport Saturday evening (Feb. 26) to find my truck missing. Eventually I found I had not paid the parking fee and my truck had been impounded.

Crucified on the altar of public opinion
It was disappointing to read the Letter to the Editor on Monday, Feb. 28, about a comment made by Sarah Palin concerning the "toughest men on the planet." I have never met Mrs. Palin before, but I imagine that her high opinion of the Iron Dog contestants is a legitimate and heartfelt one. That being said, taking someone's words considerably out of context, putting a "spin" on them and applying a severe social penalty to them is not only wrong, but hateful and small minded.

Drift fleet nets more restrictions: Fish board makes changes based on coho salmon concerns
The Alaska Board of Fisheries began working its way through the hundreds of proposed regulation changes for Upper Cook Inlet finfish at the Egan Center in Anchorage Tuesday.

Youth spirit honored: Peninsula teens recognized for contributions
As the public perception of teenagers grew from bad to worse in the 1990s, Alaska responded by creating Spirit of Youth, an organization geared toward dispelling the myth of the troubled teen. Founded in 1997, the group seeks to create, encourage, and highlight Alaskan youth who actively invest in and engage with their communities, and hosts an annual awards banquet to honor especially impressive kids in 11 different fields.

Assembly sets minimum for schools funding
The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly on Tuesday agreed to a minimum level of funding for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District earlier than it has in the past.

Kenai takes a look at playground designs
The City of Kenai's Parks and Recreation committee is still considering its options before blazing down the trail to a new playground at the Municipal Park.

Committee cuts pre-K pilot funding

Fish board process draws mixed reviews
Central Kenai Peninsula fishermen from all sides of the spectrum have mixed emotions on how the Alaska Board of Fisheries meeting on Upper Cook Inlet fishing issues has been going so far.

Photo: Sky lights
The northern lights fill the sky above a home on Cook Inlet View Drive early Tuesday morning during a magnetic storm that affected the earth's atmosphere. The storm was expected to generate moderately active auroras again Tuesday night, according to the Geophysical Institute at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.

Fish board ups Kenai goals; Setnetters handed closure period
Commercial fishermen took another hit at the Alaska Board of Fisheries meeting on Upper Cook Inlet finfish policies at the Egan Center in Anchorage Wednesday.

George Edward Goerig
Alaska resident George Edward Goerig, Jr., 67, passed away Tuesday, March 1, 2011, at his beloved cabin on the Kenai in Sterling.

Justin Keith Tennison
Anchor Point and Homer resident Justin Keith "J.T." Tennison, 33, died Tuesday, Feb. 22, 2011, in Homer.

KPC asks mayor to weigh cuts carefully
Dear Mayor Carey:

Around the Peninsula

Time to be Irish in Soldotna

Around the Peninsula

Kenai Community Library closure

CIA hoops teams begin march to state
Last year, the Cook Inlet Academy girls won their first Peninsula Conference championship since 1988. If this year's regular season is any indication, the Eagles won't have nearly as long of a coronation wait this time.

Reeling It In: And the Oscar goes to ... Billy Crystal?
Last Sunday night marked the official end to the awards season, at least as far as movies are concerned, and it's none too soon. The Oscars, traditionally the last among a seemingly neverending host of gala ceremonies including the Director's Guild, the Screen Actors Guild, the Golden Globes, and the Razzies, put a cap on it and summed up quite succinctly what everyone had known from the beginning: Billy Crystal was the best host of all time.

What's Happening

First Thursday

Art Briefs

Writers' reading slated

Poet's Corner

I Am From ...

Nikiski set to host Southcentral tourney
After 22 games and thousands of miles of travel, the Seward boys basketball team used a little lady luck to assume postseason pole position.

Ninilchik boys earn OT victory
The Ninilchik boys basketball team let an eight-point halftime lead slip away, but held on for a 52-49 overtime victory over Nikolaevsk in the opening round of the Class 2A Peninsula Conference tournament at Bristol Bay School on Wednesday.

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