Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Closers serve as early season misnomer
Mariano Rivera blows two saves against Boston, Keith Foulke gives up a game-ending homer to Derek Jeter.

Piedra suspended for violating policy on drugs
NEW YORK (AP)— Colorado Rockies outfielder Jorge Piedra was suspended 10 days Monday for violating baseball's new policy on performance-enhancing drugs, becoming the second player to be publicly identified under the major leagues' tougher rules.

Mets take home opener vs. Astros
NEW YORK— Kaz Matsui hit a tiebreaking single with two outs in the eighth inning, and the New York Mets won their home opener by rallying past the Houston Astros 8-4 on Monday.

Boston stomps Yanks
Tim Wakefield pitched seven strong innings and Doug Mirabelli homered to give the Red Sox an 8-1 win over the Yankees, who played compliant guests by watching and clapping during the hourlong ring ceremony and then fumbling away the game.

Sosa helps Orioles block Rays
ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. — Sammy Sosa hit his 575th career homer and first for Baltimore, helping the Baltimore Orioles beat the Tampa Bay Devil Rays 7-6 Tuesday night.

On baseball
For 34 minutes, the cheers rang out in Fenway Park, from the old, from the young, from the true believers who never gave up hope and, yes, from the New York Yankees, too.

The new era of Tiger: Nothing seems to come easily
AUGUSTA, Ga.— All the images paint a picture of Tiger Woods returning to the pinnacle of golf.

LA swamps Giants
LOS ANGELES — Milton Bradley hit a tying two-run single off Armando Benitez and left fielder Jason Ellison's error on the play allowed the winning run to score, giving the Los Angeles Dodgers a 9-8 victory over the San Francisco Giants in their home opener Tuesday.

Outdoors with John Perkovich
We have all had those really good hunting or fishing partners in camp or our everyday lives and through the years have learned to appreciate a really good and helpful partner. My last fishing trip once again reminded me of the importance of having good people along on your wilderness adventures. The kind of people who step forward and are always doing something to make the time there easier and more enjoyable for everyone.

As Matthew McConaughey and Steve Zahn watch their speedboat blown to bits, foiling the bad guys in the process, I half expected McConaughey's Dirk Pitt to gleefully announce, "I love it when a plan comes together!"

New Soldotna Trustworthy Hardware opens for business
It's been an exciting and challenging year for the Paul Miller family, owners of the Soldotna Trustworthy Hardware.

Looking forward to spring
As the snow cover of winter slowly recedes even the sight of dead grass is a welcome sight to local residents of all kinds eager for the appearance of spring vegetation.

Crime Stoppers get new logo...
After a decade of service Barbara Ruckman is stepping down from the Crime Stoppers Board of Directors.

Nary a thorn among them...
For the last 15 years, members of the Soldotna Rotary Club have been offering a dozen roses to anyone willing to contribute $20 to their annual scholarship fund.

Postal Service should save its money on ads
The U.S. Postal Service has launched its usual trial balloon indicating that the price of a first-class stamp may rise two cents (to 39 cents, for those of us scoring at home). This, of course, will leave the door open for the inevitable penny rise to a convenient 40 cents in a year or so from now.

Plea agreement not fair justice
As a close friend of the Sipray family, I am disturbed by the recent news article concerning the plea agreement in the murder of Harold Sipray. After reading the story, and then the statement made by the D.A. saying "satisfactory conclusion to the case for everyone involved," what about the victim's family and friends?

Mayor's decision gets reader's backing
I wish to applaud Soldotna Mayor Dave Carey and the Soldotna City Council for their pursuit of regulatory guidelines restricting the locations of so-called "adult businesses."

Bookstore not wanted
I further state, if we're trying to promote good morals and family values for our children and grandchildren, we need to stand up against this kind of business being opened here and let our voices be heard. I hope if enough people speak up, it can be stopped.

Hi, neighbors. Sterling Head Start had its second annual fund-raiser dinner, show and auction April 2. I was told it was sold out and was a huge success.

Good morning. Something to think about: "Each family grows out of a unique and meaningful history and each family is growing into a unique and meaningful future."— L. Richard Lessor

The Soldotna Hardware and Fishing (Trustworthy) reopens today in its new location with those neat carved bears. I'm told it will still have the nostalgic flavors of the old store — wood floors and friendly people.

Greetings from homey Kasilof. Wow, the snow; it melted away while I was gone. I spent a week with 18 librarians from White mountain, Point Hope, Port Lions, Ouzinkie, Takotna, Trapper Creek, McGrath, Pilot Point, Nuiksut, Moose Pass, Nenana, Koyuk, Anvik, Seldovia, Healy and Unalakleet attending a small library management seminar for rural librarians at the Alaska state library offices in Anchorage.

Hello, neighbors. There is so much daylight left after 5 p.m. that I don't exactly know what to do with it all. It seems rather wasteful to not do something productive with it. I could justify being an after-dinner slug when it was dark by that time, but now the guilt kicks in and I remember how we all whined about the darkness.

Cooper Landing
Good morning. Today is community hall and grounds cleanup at 10 a.m. Volunteers are needed to help with this work.

Hi, neighbors. April is said to derive its name from the Latin verb aperio, which signifies to open, because it's the month that buds and blossoms begin opening in warmer climes. Although it's too early here, at least it is about time for us to be seeing some pussy willows.

Tesoro planing pipeline repairs
Tesoro Alaska will conduct "proactive maintenance" on its under water pipeline that transports jet fuel, diesel and gasoline to the Port of Anchorage this summer, said Steve Hansen, vice president of refining for Tesoro Alaska.

Studded tires need to be off on south peninsula
Motorists are reminded that studded tires must be removed by Friday from vehicles driven south of 60 north latitude, a line that runs just north of Happy Valley and south of Seward on the Kenai Peninsula.

Man eludes rap for Nikiski thefts
A Kenai jury found a man accused of two 2004 Nikiski burglaries not guilty on one count, and the jury was deadlocked on four other counts in the case. The panel of eight men and four women on Friday found Ronald R. Billings, 23, not guilty on one count of first-degree burglary and could not agree on an additional charge of first-degree burglary, a consolidated charge of second-degree theft, one count of tampering with physical evidence and one count of third-degree criminal mischief.

Temporary bridge taking shape
The Kenai River Bridge project crews have made more visible headway in the past week as the temporary bridge moves closer to the southern side of the river.

Halibut, sablefish IFQ program more costly than thought
Administering, managing and enforcing the Alaska halibut and sablefish Individual Fishing Quota program costs more today than managing those fisheries did in the days before the IFQ program was created, according to a report issued this week by the federal Government Accountability Office.

Saturday shoppers get new destination
Beginning next month, gardeners, crafters and artisans from the central Kenai Peninsula will help greet newly arrived visitors in Kenai.

Fire burns Regal Interiors attic
Thanks to a call from a passing motorist, a fire at Regal Interiors on the outskirts of Soldotna early Tuesday morning was contained to the attic area of the business. Damage to the building was estimated at $80,000, nonetheless.

Biggs to fill shoes of borough clerk
Borough Deputy Clerk Sherry Biggs will replace retiring Kenai Peninsula Borough Clerk Linda Murphy beginning May 1. The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly voted unanimously April 5 to elevate Biggs to the clerk's position. She will make $67,623 a year. Biggs has been deputy clerk since April 1999, a position she assumed a little over a year after she began working for the clerk's office in January 1998.

'Worthy' of the wait
Shoppers line up Tuesday afternoon to get in the door at Soldotna Trustworthy Hardware and Fishing's grand opening. The store relocated several blocks south from its previous location on the Sterling Highway. People were lined up starting early in the morning — long before the doors were opened. Parking was at a minimum in the area as the lines fishtailed around the building most of the day. At right, Nancy Stamper and Dave Riley cross the highway with their arms full of purchases.

Edgar 'Bud' J. Best
Wasilla resident Edgar "Bud" John Best died Friday, April 8, 2005, at his home. He was 81.

Hilma E. Herman
Longtime Soldotna resident Hilma E. Herman died Saturday, April 9, 2005, of congestive heart failure at Stonebrook Inn II assisted-living facility in Soldotna. She was 93.

Mary Louise Cartee-Stevens
Former Alaska resident Mary Louise Cartee-Stevens died Monday, April 4, 2005, in Boise, Idaho. She was 75.

What others say: Passport idea could do more harm than good
To many Alaskans, Canada seems more like the neighbor next door than it does a foreign country. But if U.S. citizens want to drop in on that neighbor, they're going to have start carrying a passport.

Public needs to remain alert with 1 month left
Just one month remains in the first session of the 24th Alaska Legislature. Several major items that have been brought to the foreground seem, from the outsider's view, to be a good ways from conclusion. But judging from past Legislatures, just when it looks like an issue won't get resolved, the barriers can suddenly fall away and congratulatory handshakes are seen in front of the camera.

Around the Peninsula
Head Start open house today Nikiski chamber to meet Assistant principal interview set KPC council to meet Relay for Life meeting set YRC fund-raiser slated Elks fund-raiser set Dinner, auction fund-raiser planned Conservation fund-raiser slated

Lunch menus
Elementary Secondary

KPC: Around campus
KPC's campus in Homer will host the annual Kachemak Bay Writers' Conference from June 10 to 14 at Land's End Resort. The conference is a statewide, nationally-recognized writing conference featuring workshops, readings and panel presentations in fiction, poetry, nonfiction, and the business of writing.

Students debate formation of borough
Should the southern Kenai Peninsula, from Ninilchik to Nanwalek, pull out of the Kenai Peninsula Borough in favor of a more localized form of government? That was the question argued Friday by two-member drama, debate and forensics teams from Homer and Nikiski high schools. Homer's Whitney Cushing and Adrian Ryan took the affirmative, while Tatiana Butler and Sharon Miller of Nikiski opposed Homer's secession. After 90 minutes of intense debate, the Nikiski team emerged victorious, but not without a fight.

There's absolutely nothing wrong with spacing out
Astronauts who train at the Johnson Space Center in Houston have access to cutting-edge technology developed by top engineers and scientists. Two peninsula schools are anything but light years behind that training — and they have the enthusiasm that goes with it.

Senior Menus
Homer Kenai Seward Soldotna Sterling

Search for outstanding worker starts
Experience Works, a training and employment organization for mature workers nationwide, is searching for Alaska's outstanding older worker. For the eighth year, outstanding older workers from every state and the outstanding employers of older workers will be honored in Washington, D.C., and also in their home states, for their contributions to the workforce and communities.

Senior Briefs
Forget-Me-Not Activity Center Homer senior, Friendship centers Kenai Seward Soldotna Sterling

Celtics close in on Atlantic title
PHILADELPHIA — Paul Pierce scored 27 points, including the go-ahead basket in the final minute, and Boston moved closer toward clinching the Atlantic Division title with a 105-98 victory over second-place Philadelphia on Tuesday night.

Tyson promises 'train wreck' for June fight in D.C.
WASHINGTON — Mike Tyson hunched in his chair and tapped his 9-year-old daughter's hand while she rested her head on Daddy's ample shoulder. Later, the heavyweight once called ''the baddest man on the planet'' cuddled his napping son.

Miller moves past 'The Logo'
TORONTO— Reggie Miller scored 19 points to pass Jerry West for 12th on the all-time scoring list and the Indiana Pacers beat the Toronto Raptors 94-90 Monday night.

Nikiski wrestlers compete in tourneys
The Nikiski Panthers Freestyle Wrestling Club competed at the Anchorage Christian Schools Lions' Greco-Roman and Freestyle Tournaments on April 1 and April 2 and the Homer Tournament on Saturday.

Radcliffe burning to silence doubters
LONDON — Paula Radcliffe looked untouchable when she set the world record in the London Marathon two years ago.

Soldotna soccer splits with Grizzlies
The Soldotna soccer teams started their seasons by splitting games against Grace Christian Tuesday at Anchorage Football Stadium.

The new era of Tiger: Nothing seems to come easily
AUGUSTA, Ga.— All the images paint a picture of Tiger Woods returning to the pinnacle of golf.

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