Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Great Day for the Irish in Soldotna
Nineteen years ago when Mike Sweeney decided to have a St. Patrick's Day Parade down the Sterling Highway some may have thought it was an eccentric idea coming in the middle of March which can still be the middle of winter on the Kenai Peninsula. But given the luck of the Irish in a community that loves a parade the weather has never been a deterrent and the popularity of the event has continued to grow. From its original route down the Sterling Highway the parade has moved to the Kenai Spur Highway from Bailey's Furniture Store to the "Y" in Soldotna. "It may not be the longest parade in the state, but it seems to be the only St. Patrick's Day Parade in Alaska, and is always a lot of fun for participants and spectators," says Sweeney. The St. Patrick's Day celebration in Soldotna isn't limited to the short parade, but is followed by other events around town that include a traditional corn beef and cabbage dinner served up at the Senior Citizens Center, and a variety of other activities and parties including green beer and live music at Hooligan's and St. Elias Brewing Co.

Cutting down on light pollution neighborly thing to do
Hooray for Les Palmer for bringing to our attention the terrible light trespass of yard lights. Like Les, we love the beauty of a clear, dark evening and beholding the marvelous, magnificent night sky. That is a rarity however, as the glaring glow of our neighbor's yard light, reflected from high above his reflective white house, blasts our property with mercury vapor light, illuminating all of our buildings, property and home, creating an eerie green light that illuminates our closed bedroom lights and preventing us from observing our celestial magnificence.

Time for animal control in the borough
I am truly in a conundrum. I have exhausted my efforts, and am coming up with nothing. My problem? Stray dogs running in small packs in our subdivision! Yesterday, I was almost attacked by a pit bull that popped out of the trees on a walk with my own dog. He charged at me, barking, and we went the other direction to avoid it. Then, out of the other yard (didn't recognize whose dog) was a big mean rottie heading for us. We ended up on a 10 minute walk, and back inside with me yelling at the dogs to go home. I called animal control in Kenai, and because we are in the borough, we're outta luck.

Assessment doesn't smell right
Thank you Mayor Dave Carey, in keeping your campaign promise, given at my brother's house in Nikiski, you said, "I promise to bum, beg, borrow, or steal every dime I can from the government."

Nikiski senior center enjoys lunch
The Nikiski Senior Citizens would like to thank the Cook Inlet Lions for the delicious St. Patrick's Day lunch they prepared on Saturday, March 13. Many thanks to Richard, Heidi, Garrett and Jackson Dominick, Matt Yamaoka, Linda, KataLynn, Chris and Leanne Payton, Tonda Sutton, Raeliana Feik, Wes Piladn, Shayne Pope and Bob Harrison. As usual, the meal was wonderful and enjoyed by all.

Nikiski cabin burns, no injuries
A Nikiski cabin caught fire this morning. One man and four children were asleep at the time of the blaze. The Nikiski Fire Department says no one was hurt, but no livable space remains. Firefighters believe a heater on the home's back deck ignited the flames.

State's prisoner profile report released: Numbers help prison administrators anticipate needs of inmate population
When you're in the people business, like Spring Creek Correctional Center Superintendent Craig Turnbull says he is, it's nice to know exactly whom you're dealing with.

Tsunami warning system to be tested
A statewide test of the tsunami warning communications system is planned for 9:45 a.m. on Wednesday.

Kenai considers town hall meeting
After several weeks of discussion and public testimony on energy policies last fall, the Kenai City Council is planning to sponsor a $15,000 town hall meeting to brainstorm ideas on building a sustainable community.

Homer woman taken in by 'grandparent scam'
It isn't new -- consumeraffairs.com lists the grandparent scam as one of the top 10 scams for 2006 -- but it's still effective. Just ask Jolee Ellis of Homer.

Photo feature: Bald is beautiful
Darnell Hasty, right, jokes with her son Edward Britton about their now mutually bald heads after Hasty had her locks cut during the St. Baldrick's Foundation fund-raiser for childhood cancer Saturday night at the Soldotna Sports Center. According to co-chair Marcia Jacobs, the event raised nearly $40,000.

Inside track: Legislators focus on energy, education, tax laws
JUNEAU -- The countdown to April 18 is under way in the state Legislature. That's the 90th day, when lawmakers must adjourn and all bills not yet approved will hit the dumpster.

Stepped-up drilling needed to keep gas flowing in Cook Inlet
An oil and gas consulting firm working with Southcentral Alaska utilities estimates that investments of $1.9 billion to $2.8 billion will be needed to drill enough wells to keep sufficient natural gas flowing from gas fields in the Cook Inlet region to supply current utility demand for space heating and electrical generation.

Robert E. 'Bob' Wilson
Longtime Alaskan and Cooper Landing resident Robert E. "Bob" Wilson died Thursday, March 18, 2010 at his home in Cooper Landing. He was 83.

No need for war on wolves: Fatal wolf attack at Chignik Lake tragic, but extremely rare
The death of Candice Berner at Chignik Lake as a result of a wolf attack was a tragic event. Her family and friends deserve our deepest sympathy.

Around the Peninsula

Deaf issues to be discussed

Around the District

School board to meet

The stages of 'not' writing a research paper
I have recently taken on the endeavor of writing a research paper. Luckily, I survived and managed to complete it within the deadline, barely. I learned a lot of things during this process but the most important are what I now call the 5 Stages of Writing a Research Paper.

Baking for Haiti
Fifth-grade students from Redoubt Elementary participated in a bake sale to raise money for Haiti's earthquake relief. These students came into school on their days off for parent/teacher conferences and volunteered at the bake sale. The students raised $665 for the relief efforts.

Kenai Central raises funds for Haiti
Mrs. Borland's Kenai Central High School government class put on a school wide dodgeball tournament Feb. 22 - 26to raise money for Haiti Relief. We were able to raise $407 from students who wanted to participate in the dodgeball tournament and donations were also accepted. We are donating the money to the American Red Cross.

High school senior scholarships offered
Kenai Peninsula College is offering six 2010/2011 full-tuition scholarships to graduating seniors from Cook Inlet Academy, Kenai Alternative High School, Kenai Central, Nikiski High, Ninilchik High, Seward High, Skyview, Soldotna High or Borough residents participating in home-school programs. Recipients of this scholarship will have full-time tuition -- up to 15 credits -- waived for the fall and spring semesters of the 2010/2011 school year. Fees and books are not included in the scholarships. Applications are available from the KPC home page and due to the Financial Aid office at the Kenai River Campus by April 9.

Little Peeps at the Refuge
Jack, left, and Chase Laker decorate their own moose horns with help from mom, Julie, at the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge's Little Peeps Pre-School Environmental Education Program on Friday. Kids spent the hour long session learning about moose.

Cory, Carly Davis wrap up snocross seasons
Cory Davis and Carly Davis, both of Soldotna, finished their snocross seasons at the Nielsen Enterprises Grand Finale in Lake Geneva, Wisc., Friday through Sunday. The event is part of the International Series of Champions AMSOIL Championship Snocross Series.

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