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Thursday, May 25, 2006

At work with: Barbara Jones
  Barbara Jones, the head housekeeper at the Soldotna Inn, grimaces at a load of laundry during a recent Saturday at work. Jones, who has worked at the Inn for more than three years, said she likes the people she works with but that laundry can be a pain. Photo by John Hult Name: Barbara Jones

Business Briefs
Chambers set schedules Beluga Bay topic for meeting Salmon totes available Land Trust holds benefit

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

What is it???
Ever wonder what happened to the contest the Clarion held in April to rename the “InSide” section?

Fighting for weekend action
Several modern-day gladiators will face each other this weekend, but rather than fighting in a coliseum as in days past, these competitors will fight in a cage.

Code yellow: Animals more fun than Hanks
This weekend had a kind of David and Goliath feel to it at the movies. A giant, bloated behemoth of a movie went head to head with a frisky little cartoon, and guess what? David got stomped. I wish I could continue the analogy by saying the raccoon hurled an acorn at Tom Hanks oddly slicked-back head and took him down, but in reality “Over the Hedge” made a mere $37 million as compared to “Da Vinci’s” $224 million worldwide take.

Art Briefs
Peninsula players awarded Homer council events add up KPC offers still cinema course Drama camp deadline looms Art sought for Ketchikan school

Support helps food bank feed hungry
We at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank find it hard to put into words our gratitude for the continued support and generosity of local residents. Local grocers including Country Foods, Fred Meyer and Safeway in Kenai and Soldotna each provided 122 or more cans or boxes of food to the food bank for every credit card charge of $91.90 and above during the KDLL 91.9 FM April membership drive. The total donations provided nearly 500 pounds. The support truly makes a difference in the lives of elders, infants and toddlers, the disabled and many, many families on the Kenai.

Editorial scares reader
On May 19, the Clarion reprinted a VECO Times editorial. VECO Times editorials on the oil industry have about as much validity as the short promos for the Rush Limbaugh daily radio show. Both take small kernels of truth lathered over with mountains of distortion. Where Rush and VECO differ is that VECO takes a very active roll in political influence.

Reader: Chenault makes borough better
The letter by Ray Metcalfe (Clarion, May 3) is wrong. Rep. Mike Chenault has done a great job representing our borough. Since oil activity provides a great deal of the jobs in our area, Rep. Chenault is understandably interested in being sure that this economic activity continues. This is because Rep. Chenault really cares about our area.

Murderers, victims not the same
Maybe the warm and fuzzy thinking expressed in Chris Jenness’ review of “United 93” plays well in San Francisco, Hollywood or some other liberal enclave, but I doubt it’s believed here in Alaska.

Reader: Compromise can benefit the river
I may be only stating the obvious, but I haven’t heard anyone yet offer this suggestion regarding the overwhelming number of guides, overcrowding in general, pollution; (water and noise), boat wakes and horsepower limits.

Let oil companies make money, but don’t leave holes
You know there is not much difference between the early gold miners and the present day oil companies. When the price of gold dropped, the gold miners left and all that the Alaskans got out of the gold was a little bit of work and a whole lot of holes in the ground, along with some infrastructure that the Alaskans had to pay tax to keep up.

Translators’ help worth a thousand words
Although it is late, we want to take a moment and share some well deserved thank-yous regarding the Arctic Winter Games held on the peninsula last March. Team Alaska and the biathletes were particularly grateful for Marathon Oil Co.’s financial support, but Marathon and especially their employee, Ronda Thompson, deserve additional kudos for going above and beyond the call of duty. Ronda possesses a general knowledge of the Russian language and completed 30 trips to the Russian Far East when she worked for the Alaska Legislature. Hearing this, the AWG director asked her to volunteer her time to assist Team Yamal in getting set up and to monitor their progress throughout the games.

Reader likes SUVs, no matter what others say — or sing
I am pretty thankful to be living where I am these days. Not for the usual reasons I share with far away friends and family on a regular basis. They already know about our beautiful outdoors, low population, recreational choices and long summer days. What separates us from the rest of the Lower 48 is more than geography. It is our tolerance for living how we choose and not using politically correct means to achieve that. We are who we are.

Reader: Shame on assembly
Shame on the borough assembly members. The general public did not feel that the borough should be in the nursing home business and should stick to their elected job. But then again, they don’t do that very well either. But to blatantly buy Heritage Place for $999,999, knowing that by the votes in last election that one more dollar would have put it on the ballot for general election is an all-time low.

Country built on immigration should embrace more people
In his column in the May 18 Clarion, Cal Thomas says that we should not allow immigration of people south of our border because it would result in “changing the character and culture of America.”

Guilty
Barry McCormack was found guilty by a Kenai jury Wednesday of the murder of Opal Fairchild in her home more than 21 years ago.

McCormack found guilty
Barry McCormack was convicted by a Kenai jury Wednesday of murdering Opal Fairchild in her home more than 21 years ago.

Seasonal unemployment falling slower than last year
The unemployment rate in the Kenai Peninsula Borough in April fell seven-tenths of a point from March figures as seasonal industries began gearing up for the coming summer.

McCormick won’t testify
The day Opal Fairchild was found dead in her home, a mean-looking man driving dangerously down Poppy Lane was spotted as he pulled into the murder victim’s driveway and walked toward the front door of her house, according to witness testimony in the murder trial of Barry McCormack on Tuesday.

Not guilty
After three days of deliberation, a 12-member jury on Wednesday declared Jay Darling not guilty in the death of his wife, Wanda Wood Darling, who fell to her death from an 800-foot bluff near Homer on Aug. 24, 1997.

Expansion of strip club hours, river walks on agenda
After operating Good Time Charlie’s for 34 years, owner Charles Cunningham isn’t pleased with a new Soldotna rule saying the bar must close at midnight.

CohoeLoop fire: 67 acres so far
A wildfire erupting out of a controlled burn Monday afternoon in Kasilof had firefighters working through the night and well into Tuesday in an effort to prevent it from spreading further.

Hurricane pushes Nikiski youth to New Orleans
Last year, the youth group from North Star United Methodist Church in Nikiski chose Mexico as the place they wanted to go for a mission trip.

Peninsula senators: Line is no sure thing
Senators representing Kenai Peninsula districts say they still have reservations about provisions of the petroleum profits tax bill they voted for May 23, and have warned there is no guarantee a pipeline will ever be built.

William ‘Bill’ Zimmerman
Kenai resident William “Bill” Abe Zimmerman Sr. died Thursday, Feb. 2, 2006, in Wenatchee, Wash., of a stroke. He was 69.

Minnie Graham Keating
Soldotna resident Minnie Graham Keating died Friday, May 19, 2006, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna, after being hospitalized for three weeks. She was 89.

Around the Peninsula
CPGH board meeting slated Chili feed, auction scheduled Breakfast fundraiser ready to flip Habitat groundbreaking ceremony set Gun club members meeting planned Water safety instructor class offered Golf tourney set to swing Rowing classes set to stroke

Around the Peninsula
Garage sale fundraiser set Relay members ready to bank it Public comment on whales, water sought Organ transplant support group to meet

Kalifornsky Beach students create a 'hand' made mural where art imitates life
To say students at Kalifornsky Beach Elementary School in Soldotna used their hands to create a mural gracing the hallway of the intermediate wing would be an understatement.

Kenai Alternative High School students make botany lessons and hands-on-training bloom
Students at Kenai Alternative High School had an opportunity to develop their green thumbs as they put botany lessons to good use in a commercial greenhouse.

Around the District
Aurora Borealis Charter School Cook Inlet Academy Grace Lutheran Kaleidoscope School of Arts and Science Kenai Central High Kenai Middle Kenai Montessori Kenaitze Cuya Qyut’anen Head Start Mountain View Elementary Nikiski Middle-High Nikiski North Star Elementary Redoubt Elementary Sears Elementary Skyview High Soldotna Middle Soldotna Montessori Charter Tustumena Elementary School Soldotna High scholarships awarded

KPC offers up a variety of ‘lively’ ways to learn
A collaborative effort between the UAF Cooperative Extension Service and Kenai Peninsula College has resulted in a summer organic gardening classes being offered to the public at a discounted rate.

Growing up, moving on: A double-edged sword
As the graduation period passes I think back to the journey’s beginning, back to the young child not thinking of any responsibility, not worrying about tomorrow.

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