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Thursday, March 11, 2004

A-Rod blasts tater, Sheffield ducks surgery
Alex Rodriguez showed off his power and made a mistake on defense.

Lawmakers: Congress will crack down on steroids if baseball doesn't
WASHINGTON Sen. John McCain told the baseball players' association Wednesday that Congress will step in unless the union agrees to toughen the sport's steroid-testing rules.

Business Briefs
Area chambers set scheduleUniversity of Alaska president to speak in HomerIntroduction to hormones seminar offeredEntrepreneurship and banking workshop scheduledWeb site development workshop offeredInstitute offers scholarships to architectural studentsExporter of the Year nominations soughtInternet companies sue spam suspects

Nostalgic boomers turn scrapbooks into big-time business
NEW YORK For Lisa Tantillo, preserving memories of herself, friends and family meant throwing photos in a big box. But since her twins were born three years ago, the Westport, Conn., resident has become what the scrapbooking industry describes as a serious cropper.

EDD contest seeks brightest biz ideas
In an attempt to discover economic ideas people may have, the Kenai Peninsula Economic Development District has launched a new contest and is planning an "opportunities forum" at Kenai Peninsula College next month.

Markets fall as investors continue stock sell-off
NEW YORK Stocks tumbled Wednesday for the third straight session as investors, increasingly adopting a defensive strategy, bailed out of technology and other higher-risk shares. The Dow Jones industrial average shed 160 points and other major indexes also dropped sharply.

Robot guard dog has plenty of byte
SEOUL, South Korea (AP) A new household robot guardian won't do the laundry or fix dinner. But the vacuum-cleaner-sized gizmo will instantly notify its master of burglars, fires and gas leaks.

Swingley scratches with eye trouble
TAKOTNA Four-time winner Doug Swingley, blinded in one eye, dropped out of the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race on Wednesday.

Backen sets quick pace
NIKOLAI, Alaska Norwegian Kjetil Backen took the lead Tuesday in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, but said that was not his intention.

Kasilof's Mackeys among four sets of brothers running in the Iditarod
TAKOTNA Dick Mackey has a challenge for any man big enough to try to break his Iditarod record.

Iditarod Web site goes down
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) The official Web site for the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race was virtually frozen part of Tuesday by an unusually heavy rush of hits by Internet surfers, Iditarod officials said.

Art Briefs
Arts summit to be heldLogo design contest announcedStudents' stories, photos wantedSolstice festival T-shirt design wantedContest entry deadline coming upArt workshops offeredAssault awareness writing contest heldChurch soliciting for religious art entriesStatewide poetry contest announcedOilers hold mascot naming contest

What's Happening
Best BetsEvents and ExhibitsEntertainmentUpcoming EventsFilmsDown the RoadAnchorage Events

Ballet avoids complications to let dancers shine through
With 60 years experience as a dancer, dance instructor and choreographer, there isn't much in the realm of dance that Norma Cooper hasn't seen or done before, but for her new show, "Les Sylphides," she has managed to come up with something different.

Alan Jackson collects leading 8 ACM nods
LOS ANGELES Singer Alan Jackson, who received a leading eight Academy of Country Music nominations Wednesday, can justify celebrating as early as he wants because as the title of his hit song tells listeners ''It's Five O'Clock Somewhere.''

Anti-smokers call for R-rating against smoking in movies
LOS ANGELES If Nicolas Cage lights a cigarette in a movie, Hollywood's ratings board should respond as if he used a profanity, according to authors of a new study that criticizes glamorous images of smoking in movies rated for children under 17.

Tiny Native village produces epic stories
Nikolski, population 34, on Umnak Island in the Aleutians, is one of Alaska's smallest and most isolated communities.

School spending gets big push
JUNEAU Gov. Frank Murkowski is willing to go along with an increase of more than $80 million in school funding next year to prevent districts from having to lay off teachers.

Here's why women should have access to safe, legal abortions
A woman who becomes pregnant and who does not want to be pregnant has an unwanted pregnancy and, logically, an unwanted child. Without researching the precise statistics, if in fact they exist, let's assume that, if the option of abortion is not available, this unwanted pregnancy becomes over the nine-month period a "wanted" pregnancy/child by the mother in 50 percent of the time or 60 percent or 70 percent. The remaining percentage of pregnancies, it seems logical, would result in an unwanted child.

Road to Point Possession would hurt peninsula's quality of life
Your quality of life on the peninsula is soon to be extremely impacted if the borough gets its way with its plan to extend the North Road to Point Possession. This is not new, but it's in its planning stages. Some people, mostly ones with monetary goals in mind, want the road and progress.

Challenge: Find other financial resources, protect permanent fund
Dear Creative-Thinking Alaskans:

Story unfairly portrays budget increase for governor's office
A recent Associated Press article claimed that the governor's office is seeking a 21.9 percent increase in its budget "that administration officials say is necessary to pay for increased employer costs."

Alaska in big trouble
In 44 years I never approved of anything any member of the Begich family said or did until Anchorage Mayor Mark Begich engineered the well deserved no-confidence vote on the Alaska Legislature.

'Passion' did not offend viewer; letter about Gibson's film did
Re: Mr. Walters' letter printed March 2: His views of Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" were extremely one sided. I also viewed the film and did not find my intelligence insulted. I was happy to finally view a non-sugar coated film of Christ's final three days. I didn't "feel sorry," nor did I "pity" him as you stated. My spirituality was strengthened more than ever. I was able to finally see and feel what I've read and meditated on for years.

Marriage intended to be union between man and woman
I know this issue hasn't come to much attention locally, but I have to respond to the national media regarding gay marriage.

Major theme of 'The Passion' not violence, but truth, love
There has been much discussion in our culture and churches above the movie, "The Passion of the Christ." The highly popular movie is a moving, authentic and powerful representation of the events surrounding Christ's death, showing in a stark way the brutality and humiliation that Jesus endured on our behalf.

Homer man arraigned on child pornography charges
A Homer man was arraigned in Kenai Superior Court on Wednesday on 30 counts of possession of child pornography.

House agrees to ask feds to appeal Tustumena ruling
The Alaska House or Representatives approved a measure late Wednesday afternoon asking the federal Department of Interior to challenge a recent decision of the 9th Circuit Court of Appeal that effectively bans a long-running salmon-stocking program in Lake Tustumena.

Not through yet
Snow flurries scurry across the Kenai Spur Highway near Nikiski on Tuesday. Forecasters are calling for snow showers for most of the week, with temperatures topping the mid-30s and bottoming out in the mid teens.

Show featuring Soldotna teen to air Thursday
An episode of the television show "Switched" featuring Skyview High School senior Amber Spauld-ing is scheduled to air Thursday.

Kucinich delays visit
Presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich, who was scheduled to visit Kenai on Friday, postponed the trip due to medical problems, according to a Kenai campaign representative.

Presidential candidate to visit peninsula
In advance of the upcoming Kenai Democratic caucuses, presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich will visit the Kenai Peninsula on Friday.

Open seats draw HEA candidates
Three open seats on the Homer Electric Association board of directors have drawn five candidates in this year's cooperative election.

Photo feature: Clearing out
Iris Tressler sends the snow flying at the end of her driveway on Aliak Drive in Kenai on Wednesday afternoon. Forecasters are calling for rain and snow showers today, turning to snow tongiht and Friday. Temperatures are expected to range from lows in the teens to highs in the mid-30s throughout the weekend.

Future bright for Alaska gas line, says board CEO
The growing world market for natural gas promises a bright future for a gas pipeline project in Alaska, the head of the Alaska Natural Gas Development Authority said Wednesday. The comments came a few days ahead of an important public meeting of the authority board scheduled in Kenai on Monday.

Assembly members get no promises
No promises. That's what a contingent of Kenai Peninsula Bor-ough Assembly members heard from the Alaska congressional delegation last week during a trip to the nation's capital.

Beatrice Lou Stanford
Lifelong Kenai resident Beatrice Lou Stanford died Wednesday, March 10, 2004, at Alaska Regional Hospital in Anchorage after a long battle with lung cancer. She was 73.

Sheri Ann Fain
Soldotna resident Sheri Ann Fain died Friday, March 5, 2004, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. She was 23.

Mildred Yarmak
Lifelong Alaskan Mildred Yarmak died Tuesday, March 9, 2004, at Alaska Regional Hospital in Anchorage. She was 71.

Lola T. Turner
Kenai resident Lola T. Turner died Wednesday, March 10, 2004, at Heritage Place in Soldotna. She was 68.

Parents need access to kids' library records
Have you ever wondered when in history it was decided that librarians' views on privacy somehow trumped parents rights? Were you at that meeting? We missed it.

Iraq takes landmark step in right direction
The landmark document signed Monday by Iraq's Governing Council could prove to be a truly epic moment in world history the birth of the Mideast's first democratic constitutional republic outside of Israel.

Telling nation it should stay the current course not enough to win re-election
I'll be the first to admit that the Bush campaign's recent TV ads appear to be a huge waste of money. With references to Sept. 11, they appeal only to his core supporters, while giving his detractors misplaced but effective ammunition with which to attack both the president and his political tactics.

Around the Peninsula
Healthy Communities meeting slatedCPCS board to meetMembers sought for drum groupKPC seeking representativesHistorical society to meetGreco to speak at Solid RockBlood bank schedules driveAssociation to discuss harvest proposalsFish and game advisory group to meet

Around the Peninsula
Food bank to hold open house Charter school enrollment deadline today Fish and Game committee meeting set Developmental screening offered Social Security reps to visit area Johansen to discuss hydroponics Preschool to hold fund-raiser Soroptimists to meet

Community Schools
This list of Soldotna Community Schools classes and activities beginning this week is printed as a reminder to preregistered participants. For more information, call 262-6768.

School board to meet
The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Board of Education will meet at 7:30 p.m. Monday in the assembly chambers at the Borough Building in Soldotna. The meeting is open to the public.

Connections
The Boys and Girls Club will offer Saturday dance classes. There will be a movement and music class for children ages 3 to 5, a ballet class for those ages 6 to 8 and a jazz dance class for students ages 9 to 11. The cost is $50 per class. For more information, call Kim Lee at 283-2682.

Kenai Central High
Elementary forensics will be Saturday at the school.

Kenaitze Cuya Qyut'anen Head Start
Brenda Trefon will present in the classrooms today.

Kalifornsky Beach Elementary
Dates to remember:

Education on wheels Kenai family takes home-school studies on the road
Blair and Ronna Martin school their kids at home, which usually means at their house in Kenai. However, for four and a half months last fall, home was a vintage 1976 school bus and the classroom was the western United States.

Wings Christian Academy
The high school basketball teams won all of their home games against Eagle River Academy last weekend. Teams will be traveling to the state tournament at Peters Creek. The tournament runs Thursday through Saturday.

Tustumena Elementary
Mrs. Worsfold is coordinating the memory book. The task of gathering pictures for this publication is a huge undertaking that requires many hours of work by dedicated parents and staff members. Parents are asked to submit their photos and special messages to the school by Friday.

Sterling Elementary
Congratulations to the students who were honored Friday at the awards assembly: Kathrine Vengley, Jacob Kirk, Tyler Dolan, Georgia West, Kassey Ferganchick, Jaimee Morris, Bud Sparks, Sean Dean and Catherine House.

Soldotna Montessori Charter
Mrs. Overturf's kindergartners learned about the different layers of the earth by building each layer with a different color of clay.

Mountain View Elementary
The third-graders are participating in an IditaRead race to Nome. For every 15 minutes a student reads, he or she gets to move one checkpoint closer to Nome. There will be a Nome celebration March 19 for all children completing the trail.

Soldotna High
Showin' Off the Kids and the Village Fair will be Friday and Saturday.

Spring break approaches
There will be no school March 22 to 26 in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District for spring break. March 19 will be a minimum day for students, as well, with school letting out early. Parents and students should check with their school for the March 19 dismissal time.

Skyview High
The staff congratulates the Battle of the Books team. They took the state championship honors with a nearly perfect score, missing only one question throughout the entire day's competition. Team members were Kim Martin, Becky Kilfoyle and Rachel Osterman. Rachel Beatty was the alternate. Twenty-three teams competed in this year's event.

UA President Mark Hamilton brings his message to the Kenai
KPC is excited to host University of Alaska President Mark Hamilton's visit to the central and southern Kenai Peninsula on Tuesday and March 17. Hamilton will tour the campus and address the KPC faculty, staff and students on both the Soldotna and Homer campuses. He also will speak to the KPC College Council.

Ninilchik
Sophomore Nicole Osmar claimed the Junior Iditarod championship. She has competed in this event twice before. This year she came in nine minutes in front of the runner-up.

Nikiski Middle-Senior High
Region basketball will be hosted this year in Anchorage by Grace Christian. Thursday games will be played at Grace Christian. Friday and Saturday games will be at Dimond High School. Please check for game times.

Cook Inlet Academy
Students in grades three through eight participated in the Cook Inlet Academy speech meet. Speech categories included puppets, dramatic poetry and patriotic oration.

Grace Lutheran
In seventh- and eighth-grade science, students are wrapping up their module based on the physics of motion. Students have been learning how gravitational forces affect the planets and comets in the solar system. They also have studied Einstein's general theory of relativity and its relationship to why gravity exists.

Redoubt Elementary
Parents are reminded that students may safely exit and enter vehicles at any point along the sidewalk in front of the school, which will allow several students to be dropped off simultaneously. This will greatly reduce traffic congestion before and after school. The parent support is greatly appreciated in this matter.

Sears Elementary
Students are reminded to continue to bring hats and gloves to school even though the weather is warmer. Students will be going out in all kinds of weather.

Soldotna Middle
School counselors from Skyview and Soldotna high schools will visit the eighth-graders from 9:30 to 10:20 a.m. Monday. They also will be in at lunch times next week to answer any questions students may have about their high school schedule.

Cleveland gets Garcia
Jeff Garcia's search for a new team ended quickly in Cleveland.

Flyers rip Devils, control Atlantic Division
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. John LeClair had a goal and two assists, and the Philadelphia Flyers opened a seven-point lead over New Jersey in the Atlantic Division with a 3-1 victory over the Devils on Tuesday night.

Alaska Sportswriters Prep Basketball Poll
The Alaska Sportswriters Prep Basketball Poll, compiled by the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner, with first-place votes in parentheses, records through games of March 7 and total poll points awarded on a 5-4-3-2-1 basis.

NHL on a death watch
One of these days, the National Hockey League will finally get it.

Nuggets break Wizards, three-game skid
WASHINGTON Voshon Lenard scored 27 points and rookie Carmelo Anthony had 26 in his first NBA homecoming to lead the Denver Nuggets to a 117-87 rout of the Washington Wizards on Tuesday night.

Sports Briefs
CIA girls, boys to play at 6 p.m. FridayTeam Alaska has a down day

Bertuzzi in trouble for punch
VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) Colorado forward Steve Moore will miss the rest of the season with a broken neck, the result of a sucker punch from Vancouver's Todd Bertuzzi that is being investigated by police.

Nikiski, Seward shoot for District 3/3A title, trip to state tournament
When the District 3/3A tournament tips off today at Grace Christian School in Anchorage, the Nikiski boys will be looking to try and get to state despite the absence of star senior guard Jeremiah Taylor.

Peninsula's Region III/4A squads look to unseat Northern Division
Colony, Wasilla and Palmer the three schools from the Matanuska-Susitna valleys have traditionally had the upper hand in claiming the three berths both boys and girls teams can earn to the state tournament at the Region III/4A tournament.

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