Monday, April 1, 2002

Alaska delegation to leave for Kamchatka
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A group of Aleut Natives and government officials leaves were to leave Friday night for a weeklong mission to Kamchatka in the Russian Far East.

Police link pocket money to cash from bank robbery
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A man charged with driving while intoxicated was linked to a bank robbery after authorities found $5,000 in his pockets.

Plane crashes while landing at Goose Bay airstrip
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The National Transportation Safety Board is investigating the crash of a small plane at the Goose Bay airstrip northwest of Anchorage.

State gets grant to promote health and safety training
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The U.S. Department of Labor has awarded the state a $42,800 grant to promote mine safety.

With help from air freight, Orthodox Jews follow ancient laws in Alaska
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Like other Orthodox Jews in Alaska, Raquel Bodie packs an extra suitcase when she takes a trip Outside.

Lodge's hat collection recognized by Guinness book
KENAI (AP) -- A collection of more than 20,000 hats at a Kasilof lodge has been certified as the world's largest by the Guinness Book of World Records.

Man arrested in Ketchikan murder
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- A 38-year-old man has been arrested and charged with first-degree murder in the December beating death of a Ketchikan utility worker.

UAA students study workplace sex on TV
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A study by seven students at the University of Alaska Anchorage chronicling television's approach to sex in the workplace has been accepted for publication in a professional journal.

Early morning crash closes Glenn Highway
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A morning crash Saturday injured two and briefly closed the Glenn Highway in Anchorage.

Alaskaland story correction
FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) -- The Associated Press reported that a funding agreement made between the federal government and the Fairbanks North Star Borough in 1967 could affect present plans to develop Alaskaland. The funding agreement was made between the federal goverment and the state of Alaska.

DEC praises BP, Phillips for performance on North Slope
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- State regulators say two of Alaska's big oil companies are keeping their environmental promises at their North Slope oil fields.

Bill would make it easier to hire minors
JUNEAU (AP) -- The House of Representatives approved a bill Monday aimed at making it easier for businesses to hire minors.

Knowles turns down Russian firm's processing plan
JUNEAU (AP) -- Gov. Tony Knowles has turned down a Seattle-based company's proposal to bring Russian fish processing boats into Alaska waters to buy salmon this summer.

Biologists look to hunters to thin Killey River caribou herd
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- State game biologists say they are looking to hunters to thin the Killey River caribou herd on the Kenai Peninsula.

Ulmer, Hall say they'll work closely before primary
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A joint press conference not withstanding, Fran Ulmer and Ernie Hall say they're not running as a team to be the Democratic nominees for governor and lieutenant governor.

Foresters undecided about reforestation with alien trees
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- State and federal foresters are trying to decide if private landowners on the Kenai Peninsula and around Anchorage should be allowed to use public money to replace beetle-killed spruce trees with nonnative trees.

Fairbanks firefighters rescue fugitive kitten
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Fairbanks firefighters couldn't say no to Conny Funderburk's plea to pluck her calico kitten, Mira, from a tall tree.

March 28, 2002 The Voice of the Times suggests closing another tax loophole
Legislators who are looking for new state revenue sources may want to examine what amounts to a major loophole in Alaska's existing tax structure.

Juneau fisherman's body found offshore near Elfin Cove
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Coast Guard is investigating the death of a 39-year-old Juneau fisherman whose body was found near Elfin Cove in Southeast Alaska.

March 27, 2002 The Anchorage Daily News supports court decision on English-only law
Superior Court Judge Fred Torrisi had the issue dead to rights on March 22 when he ruled in a case from Togiak that the 1998 law requiring government workers to speak only English infringes on free speech and serves no compelling public interest.

Adventurers prepare for Bering Strait crossing
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Two British adventurers attempting to be the first to drive across the partially frozen Bering Strait had a successful test run in their all-terrain vehicle and were doing final checks Friday before setting out for Russia within the next few days.

March 28, 2002 The Ketchikan Daily News fears environmentalists' next target
First, there was don't extract. That's long been the mantra of national environmental groups who've lobbied hard to exterminate resource extraction industries in Alaska.

Student sentenced for assaulting incapacitated woman
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A former University of Alaska Fairbanks student was sentenced to four years in prison Friday morning for sexually assaulting another student in his dorm room last March.

March 28, 2002 Alaska Newspapers Inc. mourns the loss of Rev. Jim Kelley
It is a tribute to the Rev. Jim Kelley's passion for the Cathlic church that he died doing the two things he loved most: ministering and flying.

State starts work on on-the-fly vehicle weighing, inspection system
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A new electronic screening system planned for Alaska's busiest stretch of highway will allow weight- and safety-compliant commercial vehicles to truck past a state inspection station.

Threats, misbehavior reportedly continue at Kivalina school
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Two weeks after the school was reopened in the Northwest Alaska village of Kivalina, educators report a resumption of student misbehavior, including a threat against a teacher, profanity and vandalism.

Redistricting board broke and forced to ask GOP for funds
JUNEAU (AP) -- The Alaska Redistricting Board doesn't have the money to finish work on a new legislative map ordered by the state Supreme Court.

Two men die in Eagle River avalanche
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Two men died Sunday when they were buried in an avalanche in Eagle River, Alaska State Troopers said.

Boy hit by car seriously injured
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A 14-year-old boy was critically injured when he was struck by a car while skateboarding, police said.

Alaskaland renovation plans at standstill
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- An agreement made by the Fairbanks North Star Borough 35 years ago has halted plans to develop Alaskaland into more of a tourist attraction.

State buys brake inspection system
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The state has a new device that can detect bad brakes and other mechanical problems on trucks and buses traveling at highway speeds.

Mat-Su Valley's only bowling center closes
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Valley Lanes, the only place to bowl in the Matanuska-Susitna area, has gone out of business.

Juneau bears waking from winter slumbers
JUNEAU (AP) -- The bears of Juneau are waking from their winter slumbers about the same time that new laws concerning bears and garbage go into effect.

Romanian immigrant practices egg-painting art from homeland
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Eggs are everywhere in Ida Camelia Groetsema's home, but the orbs weren't dropped there by a bunny and they aren't evident only at Easter time.

Father ticketed for allowing children on snowmobiles
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Chris Prigge is snowmachining at Turnagain Pass this weekend as he has done many times during the past 11 years. For the first time, though, the Anchorage resident might prohibit his children from driving to comply with an obscure state law he ran afoul of a week ago.

Baseball 2002: Changed rosters alter pennant chase
That little bloop single by Luis Gonzalez proved to teams and fans everywhere that indeed it was possible: the New York Yankees could be beaten.

Major league season, Cleveland wide open
ANAHEIM, Calif. -- The Cleveland Indians' new era -- pitching instead of power hitting -- got off to an impressive start.

DEC praises BP, Phillips for performance on North Slope
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- State regulators say two of Alaska's big oil companies are keeping their environmental promises at their North Slope oil fields.

Photo feature: Job fair
Participants discuss the employment market during Saturday's job fair at Kenai Peninsula College. The event was well-attended by both employers and prospective employees.

Dog sledding for donations
Winners of the Peninsula Sled Dog and Racing Association's annual businessmen's and women's race pose after the race.

"It's called a panic room, a safe room; a castle keep in medieval times," the slick real estate agent tells Jodie Foster (as well as the rest of us) at the start of David Fincher's latest venture into the land of paranoiac thrills and twisted bad guys. Only the guy behind Seven and The Game could so successfully make a room designed to ease your fear into such a scary place. Because, though the panic room will keep the evils of the world out, it also keeps you in.

Ambitious 'Requiem' unites 250 musicians
Every Wednesday night for the past four months a group of about 30 central peninsula residents has gathered in a classroom at Kenai Peninsula College under glaring fluorescent lights and surrounded by butcher-paper and marker posters from an education class held earlier in the day for the opportunity to be part of something greater than themselves.

Parent pitches for P.E. class changes
One motivated mom is trying to whip her school's physical education program back into shape.

Annexed area to feel Homer sales tax bite
HOMER -- Businesses in the newly annexed area of Homer will start collecting the additional 3.5 percent city sales tax on Monday, which should boost city coffers by nearly $600,000 a year. In addition, property taxes from homes and businesses will eventually add another $300,000 or more.

Ninilchik Native Association sketchy about future pork plans
More information has arisen about plans to push pork purveyance on the Kenai Peninsula, as Ninilchik Native Association Inc. representatives spoke up to place some distance between their organization and the Alaska Pork Project Inc.

No shortage of road projects planned
Millions in state and federal funds will pour into Kenai Peninsula economy this summer as work begins on a host of vital road and trail projects from Hope and Seward to Homer.

Budget cuts taking aim at DOT services
Budget cuts could mean road services, as Kenai Peninsula residents have known them, are about to bust an axle.

Brush clearing to improve visibility near Cooper Landing
Highway safety could be affected if proposed cuts to the Department of Transportation budget are enacted by the Legislature.

Canneries open despite uncertain season ahead
Four area canneries are open, but the outlook for the seafood processing industry on the Kenai Peninsula is still uncertain.

School District contract offer rejected
Money still divides administrators and employees of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District.

Teacher unions rally against pay proposal
HOMER -- Cold fingers, curious stares and even a moose wandering through their picket line didn't deter as many as 90 teachers and education staff from bringing their message to the street Tuesday night in Homer.

Tustumena Lodge officially enters book of world records
You have to take your hats off to John and Suzie Cook.

Evan Michael Sweatt
Evan Michael Sweatt, infant son of Kevin and Kelli Sweatt of Soldotna, was born and died Friday, March 15, 2002, at Abbott Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis.

Myrtle Jewell (Toso) Johnson Edwards Grimm
Myrtle Jewell (Toso) Johnson Edwards Grimm died Saturday, March 30, 2002, at her home in Kenai. She was 86.

Ask the Mayor
What is required to work near the river?

Congress deserves to hear from Ridge
A refusal to testify always raises the ire of Congress. This is a time-worn rule that Bush administration officials don't seem to understand.

Court case graphic reminder of pet owners' responsibility
Convictions for second-degree murder and involuntary manslaughter recently in a highly publicized trial in California serve as a timely reminder that pet owners have a legal responsibility to protect others from their animals. The results of that trial also should serve as a reminder that pet owners have a duty not just to their animals' potential victims but to the animals themselves.

Will change stop abuse or punish young people with interest in politics?
WASHINGTON-- The new campaign finance law seeks to limit the influence of corporations, unions and rich people -- and also makes it illegal for kids to donate money.

State still needs to tighten its belt More time needs to be spent looking for new sources of revenue -- not taxes
Years ago a close family friend lost his job. It was hard on his wife and three children. The extra money they had saved went to pay for the basics: rent, utilities, food. Nothing was left over. They, like many Alaskans, had to tighten their belts and make do with unemployment insurance, and it was barely enough.

Community support cements regional tourney's success

Change fills springtime air; it's chance to begin anew
Change is in the air: sunshine above, ice and slush below, the buds swelling and the birds beginning to stir.

Letters to the Editor
Ninilchik Native Association will not pursue pork projectClosing state parks ultimate betrayal by state representativesQuestions about Sterling survey, recent grant award get answers

Resurrection story reason to celebrate
Today Christians around the world celebrate the resurrection of Jesus. Here is the Easter story as told in the gospel of Luke in the New Testament.

Club News
Elks table tournament winners announcedKarate club to raise funds for hospital

A look into the past: Kenai Commercial Company, 1949
The Kenai Commercial Company near the bluff in Kenai was the only store in the Kenai-Soldotna area in the early 1950s. A Mr. Stephan was the first owner. The store suffered a major fire Chri

Around the Peninsula
Community council to discuss road projectsWRCC offers domestic violence informationBazaar, bake sale planned this weekResource Development Council to meet FridayWorkshop focuses on sensory integrationAdvisory council role open for feedback

Parents can make prom memorable in all the right ways
Prom night should be a time to remember for always. Remem-bered because of the special dress, the activities and time with friends. Unfortunately, tragedy can sometimes cast a terrible shadow on how a person remembers prom night for

Community News
Kenai honored for financial reportingNavy units seek crew members for reunionHomer Community School updates programsYouth volleyball players sought for Europe tour

Today's Easter Bunny hops in Santa's footsteps
SOUTH PORTLAND, Maine (AP) -- The Easter Bunny is making tracks on Santa Claus' turf, using one of the biggest Christian holidays as an opportunity to lure little tykes and their parents to the mall.

Peninsula People
Area students named to dean's listKenai youth recognized for activitiesHomer woman graduates basic trainingLocal youth place in scholarship pageantKenai woman receives scholarshipKenai woman participates in gala

Hero of the week
I was on a family outing with my kids and their friends at the Soldotna Elementary sledding hill when I jumped the fence. My knee hit the top of the chain-link fence. As I was going over, a wire in the fence went into my knee about 2 inches. I paused in shock, stranded at the top of the fence.

Community Schools
Most Soldotna Community School classes require preregistration and prepayment. For more information, call the Soldotna Community School office at 262-6768.

Food bank rises to challenge
The Kenai Peninsula Food Bank is participating in the fifth annual Feinstein Challenge this month to raise additional funds for area programs.

Orthodox Jews follow ancient laws in Alaska
ANCHORAGE -- Like other Orthodox Jews in Alaska, Raquel Bodie packs an extra suitcase when she takes a trip Outside.

No pain, no gain on slopes
Any NBA player whistled for a foul. The singing of W. Axl Rose. A car that hasn't been plugged in trying to start at 35 below.

Father ticketed for allowing children on snowmobiles
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Chris Prigge is snowmachining at Turnagain Pass this weekend as he has done many times during the past 11 years. For the first time, though, the Anchorage resident might prohibit his children from driving to comply with an obscure state law he ran afoul of a week ago.

UConn women cap undefeated season with NCAA hoops title
SAN ANTONIO -- Connecticut coach Geno Auriemma knew what he was talking about three months ago when he said Oklahoma would be a tough team in March.

Williams sweeps Capriati
KEY BISCAYNE, Fla. -- Serena Williams trailed in the first set, and again in the second, and once more in the tiebreaker, confronting seven set points along the way.

Unalaska boys etch win against Sea Otters
The Unalaska boys high school basketball team kept its state tournament hopes alive Friday, defeating Seldovia 43-41 to advance in the consolation bracket of the District 3/2A tournament at Cook Inlet Academy.

Sorenstam wins Kraft Nabisco
RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. -- Annika Sorenstam blew past Karrie Webb with back-to-back birdies to seize the lead Sunday, then held off fellow Swede Liselotte Neumann to become the first back-to-back winner in the Kraft Nabisco Championship.

Eagles boys, Otters girls earn state berths
The Cook Inlet Academy boys basketball team soothed a little bit of the hurt from Friday night's one-point loss to Ninilchik in the championship game of the District 3/2A tournament.

Lakers inch out Spurs
LOS ANGELES -- The Los Angeles Lakers still have San Antonio's number. Barely.

Wolverines boys edge Cook Inlet for district crown
The Ninilchik High School boys basketball team survived a late Cook Inlet Academy rally and few heart-stopping moments with seconds left to play to clinch its first District 3/2A tournament championship in recent memory, defeating the Eagles 49-48 at Skyview High School Friday.

Sabres cut down Flyers
PHILADELPHIA -- Buffalo defenseman Richard Smehlik scored the go-ahead goal late in the second period, and Martin Biron made 28 saves as the Sabres beat the Philadelphia Flyers 3-1 Saturday.

Experience required: Seniors lead way to championship game
ATLANTA -- Wanted: Basketball players with Final Four aspirations, four years of experience required, must be willing to put the NBA on hold.

Davis, Indiana make more magic vs. OU
ATLANTA -- The gimpy point guard. The second-year coach. The team that wasn't even supposed to make it to the Final Four.

Ninilchik girls keep District 3/2A title streak alive
The District 3/2A high school basketball tournament might better be named the Ninilchik Invitational.

Terrapins nip Kansas behind 33 from Dixon
ATLANTA -- It couldn't happen again. It almost happened again. Juan Dixon wouldn't let it happen again.

Arctic achievements
With 147 medals in hand, the Alaska contingent returned from the 2002 Arctic Winter Games in Nuuk, Greenland, and Iqaluit, Nunavut Territory, Canada, as the most decorated team. Of the nine teams -- from Russia, Greenland, Canada and the United States -- Alaska won the most Ulus, with the Canadian Northwest Territories taking second place with 88.

Connecticut, Oklahoma seek women's crown
SAN ANTONIO -- One is from Canada, the other from Long Island.

Sports Briefs
Blackhawks calm Wild runKipketer sets world road record in New Orleans Snyder will remain head coach at Missouri

Indiana's Newton plays the star almost nobody saw coming
The tall, skinny kid with the tattoos made the big shots. And grabbed some of the biggest rebounds.

Webb, Sorenstam tied at Kraft Nabisco
RANCHO MIRAGE, Calif. -- The LPGA Tour didn't have to wait long to showcase its top stars -- Annika Sorenstam and Karrie Webb, tied for the lead going into the final round of the first major championship of the year.

Kidd rocks as Nets top 76ers
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Jason Kidd had 19 points and 17 assists as the New Jersey Nets defeated the Philadelphia 76ers 102-92 to stretch their home winning streak to 11 games.

Cook Inlet girls hammer Raiders
The Cook Inlet Academy girls basketball team defeated Unalaska 55-23 Friday in the consolation bracket of the District 3/2A tournament to stay alive for a shot at berth in the state tournament.

Kenai Kings honor area seniors
The Kenai Kings (over 35) Hockey Team defeated a group of seniors from area high schools Friday Night at the Soldotna Sports Center in a benefit game.

Juneau bears waking from winter slumbers
JUNEAU (AP) -- The bears of Juneau are waking from their winter slumbers about the same time that new laws concerning bears and garbage go into effect.

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