Friday, March 10, 2006

Wednesday Ulu winners
Alpine skiing Dene games Gymnastics Snowboarding Snowshoe biathlon

Games biathlon range can’t stay at Skyview High School
The biathlon range Arctic Winter Games athletes are using for ski and snowshoe events this week is top flight, with 10 sets of targets, 8-foot fluorescent lights for night shooting and hoods covering the targets to keep off snow.

In their blood
The Arctic Winter Games has both athletic and cultural components. In some venues, the two components are one and the same.

Cool hobby is in high demand
Making a curling sheet out of a hockey rink is both a science and an art.

Reporters’ Notebook
Editor’s note: The Reporters’ Notebook is an opportunity for Clarion reporters to share their experiences with our readers as they cover the 2006 Arctic Winter Games.

Nice ice
From the frozen tip of North America to the end of the road, the tight-knit curling community is getting tighter and expanding at the same time this week in Homer.

Games cuisine — nachos, pizza and whale blubber
Contestants and visitors in Kenai and Soldotna are getting their fill of local cuisine this week.

Kenai Peninsula Online - Alaska Newspaper -

Clear skies mean smooth skiing, shooting for biathletes
Biathlon skiers welcomed the clear skies stretched above the Tsalteshi Trails during Thursday afternoon’s races, after they faced blizzard-like conditions on Tuesday. But skiers still had to contend with Team Yamal, a small team of Russian skiers that has so far taken the Arctic Winter Games’ ski biathlon by storm.

Focus on: Badminton, At Soldotna Middle School
· Goal of game: Best of three games; 15 points wins men’s games, 11 points wins women’s games; scoring is only when serving, and when, 1) having hit the shuttle over the net and onto the floor of the opposing side’s court; 2) your opponent hits the shuttle into the net or out of bounds; 3) the shuttle hits the opponents’ clothing; or 4) the shuttle is hit by your opponent before it crosses the net.

Kenai Peninsula Online - Alaska Newspaper -

Event is fair game for Alaska crafts
Eskimo doll pins with faces of reindeer leather and seal fur for coats, cribbage boards with bears, moose, caribou and conifers, nature photos, salmon-themed mosaic art, Inuit-inspired jewelry and jars of fireweed jelly are all on display and sale at the Kenai Mall through Sunday as part of the Arctic Winter Games cultural festivities.

Games competitors speak language of sports
When it comes to communication, sports seem to be the great equalizer.

Jeans are hot among cold-climate shoppers
One team found their jerseys to be somewhat see-through and created an emergency run on sports bras.

What team is that?
As you wander around town during the Arctic Winter Games seeing new faces, you may wonder how you can tell what teams those faces represent. Team Alaska is easy enough to identify, as their jackets say “Team Alaska” on the back in yellow writing with bright Northern Lights. What about the rest of them? Below you’ll find a listing of the colors found on each team’s jacket.

Personal best the thing to beat in Inuit games
In the one foot high kick, part of the Inuit games at the 2006 Arctic Winter Games, competitors aim to improve their own records.

Games athletes take to the stage to display cultural heritages
As spectators watch the many Arctic Winter Games athletes, from the skiers hidden behind masks to the speed skaters all uniformly suited in spandex, it can be easy to forget that each athlete represents a unique cultural heritage.

Northern gymnasts have no problem gaining altitude
Coming off a gold medal performance in team competition earlier in the week, Team Alberta North gymnasts appeared to be the ones to beat in individual events Thursday.

Illness can’t keep Gilday from gold
Jill Gilday of Team Northwest Territories has not always had a healthy body at the Arctic Winter Games. Her body of results, on the other hand, has been plenty healthy.

Spirited exhibit
As the athletes and visitors scuttle back to their respective Northern communities, there is a piece of Arctic Winter Games history that will be a visible reminder for the city of Kenai. The Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center is the first venue for the Alaska State Museum’s Arctic Winter Games exhibit.

Business Briefs
Area chambers set schedules Canned food drive events planned Small business workshop planned Seafood training available Builders seek entries for Parade Natural gas authority to meet Tax refunds available

Around the Peninsula
Art for kids classes planned Quilt competition winners announced Stained glass classes offered Irish dance class planned Young writers, performers have chance to play Kids’ art wanted Arts scholarships available Carving workshops slated Dance club seeks members Storytellers wanted LeeShore Center sponsors design contest Writers contest accepting submissions Winter drama camp announced Kenai photos wanted

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

Film festival adds nice touch to Games
The Arctic Winter Games are upon us. Actually, by the time you read this, they’ll nearly be over, but from my point of view, they stretch out to a seemingly endless horizon. It feels as though nearly every entity on the Kenai Peninsula, from tourist organizations to quickie lube places, have been gearing up for the games. There’s sporting events, plays and even a film festival (aha! there’s the relevance.)

Survey’s success will make community better informed
The youth surveys are done, and while the results will not be tabulated for a few weeks (stay tuned!), we are delighted to report that approximately 43 percent of the students (over 760 students) in grades six, eight,10 and 12 completed the Prevention Needs Assessment. More than have ever participated in a survey of this kind before, this will allow the central Kenai Peninsula to have information that is specific to our area regarding how youth are handling such factors as availability of drugs, peer pressures to engage in alcohol, tobacco and drug use.

Reader: Long-term mine effects need to be considered
I see one local business leader is complaining about people opposed to development. He seems to be for development no matter what the long term cost. I am quite sure he is gung ho for the Pebble project. Short-term greed must be balanced against long-term environmental damage.

Business support ensures D.A.R.E. program’s success
The Kenai Police Department and the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District have worked cooperatively for the past 15 years to teach fifth-grade students the D.A.R.E. program at the Mountain View Elementary School in Kenai.

Conger gets 45 years after murder, eluding officers
William D. Conger was sentenced in Kenai Superior Court on Wednesday to 45 years in jail for the 2003 murder of John Tulin in Seward.

Old oil well may spring to life
Banking that an old capped well may yet give up riches in oil and natural gas, one of Cook Inlet’s relatively new players is set to begin drilling near Anchor Point later this month.

Unocal workers keeping jobs
Former Union Oil Co. of California employees in Cook Inlet whose jobs were in limbo following the purchase of Unocal by Chevron Oil Corp. last year are going to keep their jobs for awhile and will have some new co-workers this year.

Boy, 8, dies in crash
A boy died and four people were taken to the hospital after a sport utility vehicle spun out of control and into oncoming traffic at Mile 74 of the Seward Highway on Wednesday.

Budget leads task list for new Kenai city manager
As the city of Kenai heads into budget planning for the next fiscal year, which begins in July, its newly hired city manager does not appear to be looking at too much of a transition period into his new role.

Troy R. Willis
Soldotna resident Troy R. Willis died Saturday, March 4, 2006, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. He was 52.

Dora Ann Kamluck
Lifelong Alaskan and Port Graham resident Dora Ann Kamluck died Tuesday, March 7, 2006, at South Peninsula Hospital Long Term Care in Homer. She was 75.

City acquisition of private golf course a poor idea
Two points may help qualify the objectivity of the following analysis of the Feb. 11 Clarion article “Soldotna may opt ‘fore’ fun,” a proposal by the city (Tom Boedeker) to purchase the Birchwood Golf Course.

Spirit makes future brighter
From the looks of things, our future is in good hands. If the Arctic Winter Games are any indication of what we have to look forward to, there’s a lot of potential for good things to happen.

Government reaching in wrong pockets
Assessments are going up while (Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor John) Williams whines over proposition 5. It seems that no matter how loudly the people protest, the government gangsters continue to oppress us. The sales tax increase will be back on the ballot in October. Not surprising if we understand the nature of the beast. Like hungry lions, they continue to gnaw and like locusts they just keep coming.

Determination keeps Kasilof musher in race
What could have been an unfortunate turn of events for Kasilof musher Paul Gebhardt in the Iditarod Sled Dog Race may turn out to be an interesting side note.

Razor clams available year-round
As the year progresses and daylight eats deeper into morning and night, one of the first activities to announce spring’s arrival is seeding the minds of hungry Alaskans.

Arctic bird makes extremely rare appearance on peninsula
While Peninsula residents have been focused on international visitors from throughout the Arctic region, other visitors have slipped in relatively unnoticed. Chunky white birds that also reside in the Arctic region have made an extremely rare appearance on the Kenai River Flats; three McKay’s buntings have been spotted at the end of Cannery Road, feeding on seeds among the dunes near the mouth of the Kenai River.

Around the Peninsula
Amnesty International presentation set Counseling service board meeting slated Parenting seminar scheduled Bear baiting clinic planned

Around the Peninsula
Genealogical society plans eventsSoHi after-grad committee to meetSoHi to host parent nightWomen invited to take a breakBlood drives set to draw

Fatal crash leads to legislation that regulates DVDs, TVs in vehicles
Watching a DVD movie on a television monitor while steering your car down the highway may defy common sense but apparently it isn’t against Alaska law.

Cities on hold on gay benefit rights
City officials on the Kenai Peninsula are in a holding pattern to see what the state is going to do about gay-partner employment benefits.

SoHi cagers open NLC tourney with wins
The Soldotna High School girls basketball team took a big step toward a state tournament berth Thursday, defeating Palmer 48-45 in overtime in the opening round of the Northern Lights Conference tournament at Colony High School in Palmer.

Christianity, an experience of the heart
For 18 years, I was a fly fishing guide.

Church Briefs
Addictions group meetsCommunity outreach service setChurch to host Olympic serviceMatrix church to meetKenai Aglow meeting slatedSoldotna aglow to meetNikiski holds bible studyCross art exhibit set

Hakkinen 11th in World Cup race
Kasilof’s Jay Hakkinen, 28, maintained the momentum he picked up in the Olympics by placing 11th in the 10-kilometer sprint in World Cup biathlon action in Pokljuka, Slovenia. It is Hakkinen’s fourth top-15 finish this season, bettering his three top 10s last year.

Gebhardt not penalized for using snowmachine
Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race officials decided not to penalize Kasilof musher Paul Gebhardt for borrowing a snowmachine to track down his team during the race.

Games a Rewarding Experience for Translators
In an excited Norwegian accent, Tor Holmboe talks about meeting some, “wonderful Smi, and absolutely thoroughly enjoy rubbing shoulders with them.” With a slight Russian accent, Natalia Johnson tells of enjoying, “the truly international spirit in the schools.”

Nunavut iced by NWT, but takes loss in stride
The Nunavut midget hockey team may have lost to Team Northwest Territories in midget men’s hockey, but they certainly aren’t showing it.

‘Want some fries with that?’ Food servers unsung heroes of Games
Saturday marked the arrival of thousands of guests and participants for this year’s Arctic Winter Games, but what a lot of people didn’t consider was how hungry they all were.

Alaska girls jump over Nunavut in basketball
The Alaska girls basketball team’s aggressive play and offensive rebounding led them to a 90-44 win over Nunavut Wednesday at Cook Inlet Academy.

Catch your breath! Miss the target or run the loop in biathlon
The 3-kilometer snowshoe biathlon sprint on Wednesday forced athletes to run quickly then instantly switch over to being a calm rifle shooter. “Catching your breath” takes on a whole new meaning in this sport.

One-Foot High Kick takes center stage
During most Arctic games, the One-Foot High Kick takes the spotlight and it was no different on the Kenai Peninsula this week.

Speed skater chooses Arctic Winter Games over “Canadian Idol” TV show
Multitalented Bracken Burns, speed-skater of Northern Alberta, had to make a choice between skating with the Northern Alberta team at the Arctic Winter Games, or singing for the televised talent show “Canadian Idol.” Much like “American Idol,” if you’re chosen to perform on “Canadian Idol,” you have a chance for fame and fortune in the music industry. Burns chose Alaska, and the Arctic Winter Games.

Curlers in Homer hurry the house as stones hit the button
From the sounds of the stones echoing through the rink, to the vocalizations of the throwing team encouraging teammates to sweep the stone into the house, the Homer Ice Rink has been the stage for extreme curling action since the Games began.

Alaska volleyball team unable to dig out from Alberta North
Competition and friendship were part of the volleyball matches on Tuesday when the Alberta North Team boys spiked the Alaska Team in four sets.

Yamal contingent misses borscht, but enjoys competition, friendliness
This is only the second time Yamal—representing Russia—has participated in the Arctic Winter Games but they brought a country-size contingent with them.

Team Alaska woman ties Alaskan high kick record
Just before the kick, a hush fell over the gymnasium at Kenai Central High School. With a pause and a rocketing leap, Team Alaska’s Tanya Slim from Kipnuk tied the junior women’s Alaskan high kick record of 5’10” and will take home a gold Ulu from Tuesday’s Arctic Winter Games.

Kenai Peninsula College student journalists publish the Ulu News
If you like what you’ve been reading in the newspaper you’re holding, credit Kenai Peninsula College journalism students who are serving as the credentialed reporters for the Ulu News, the official publication of the Arctic Winter Games.

Sportsmanship reigns as Yukon musher races with borrowed team
Yukon dog musher Dylan Salvisberg almost didn’t get to run the races he had come so far to compete in.

Think Pink! NWT musher makes fashion statement while winning Gold Ulu
What’s pink and furry, and runs like the wind?

‘Awesome, dude!’ Athletes dance their cares away
Hundreds of Arctic Winter Games athletes took a break from competing Wednesday night and attended a dance in their honor at the old Sears mall in Kenai.

Terry Brooks brings magic to the Arctic Winter Games
Terry Brooks’ official Arctic Winter Games badge identifies him as “Chair of the Accommodations Committee 2008.” But you wouldn’t know that to listen to him.

Team Alaska skiers battle snow whipped slalom course to take gold, silver
Two Alaska Team men took home the gold and silver Ulus in the Arctic Winter’s Game men’s slalom event Tuesday at Alyeska Resort in Girdwood.

Jabila’ina Dancers join the Games festivities
“We were invited by the Arctic Winter Games,” said Wanda Reams, explaining simply the Jabilaina Dancers’ presence at the Games.

Figure skaters jump their way to Gold Ulus
Arctic Winter Games figure skating kicked off Tuesday with opening ceremonies at the Soldotna Sports Center. Once the competition had ended, Team Alaska had skated to two gold Ulus while Yamal and Northwest Territories skaters each pocketed a gold.

Cultural contingents’ performances dazzle AWG 2006
The Arctic Winter Games continued its tradition of honoring the cultures of the circumpolar peoples involved by producing cultural performances throughout the week.

Team Alberta tumbles to Gold Ulu in women’s gymnastics
Northern Alberta won the Gold Ulu in the Women’s Artistic Gymnastics Team Competition on Tuesday at Kenai Middle School.

President of AWG Host Society: Bagley’s personal look at the Games
Dale Bagley, President of the Host Society for the 2006 Arctic Winter Games, shared his personal thoughts with the Ulu News on this year’s Games and the preparation that led to this circumpolar event on the Kenai Peninsula.

Dene ancient traditions embodied in Games participants
The Dene Games, part of the Arctic Winter Games, was born from ancient tradition with each of the competitions based on activities once integral to Native village life. The Games are keeping these traditions alive with five sports being contested on the Kenai Peninsula.

Team Yukon overcomes challenges, hones their Badminton skills at AWG
A fledgling badminton team from the Yukon has come to the Arctic Winter Games to gain a little more of something they lack. Team Yukon’s inexperience may not be evident when they’re on the court, but truth be told, most members have been playing only since last spring.

Wrestlers demonstrate extraordinary sportsmanship
The wrestling tournament at the Kenai Recreation Center has been one of the most sportsmen-like competitions Dave Carey has ever seen.

Native elders enjoy celebration of traditional values at Games
Many Native elders remember when the traditional skills contested at the Arctic Winter Games were a matter of work and survival. They know the tradition and history behind many of the Inuit and Dene events, such as the pole push or the knuckle hop.

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