Saturday, May 30, 2009

First one
Bill Toppa caught this 45-inch king in the Airplane Hole on the Kenai River on May 19. Submit your own fishing photos by e-mail to, or visit us on the Web at and look for the Tight Lines link.

Bite shows signs of picking up
With the holiday out of the way, Kenai Peninsula anglers should be able to look forward to a weekend fewer crowds and, hopefully, more fish.

More than catching to the sport of fishing
Years ago I coined my own epitaph: "When you don't have skill, you gotta have luck."

Football camp scores a touchdown
The first middle school football camp on the Kenai Peninsula was a tremendous success. Nearly 60 athletes participated in three weeks of practice and two jamborees. Thank you to camp coaches Sarge Truesdell, Tai Lepule, Derek Urban, Jeremy Chezik, Gerald Byrne, Barry Hartman, Zayan Aberkane, Dakota Elsey, Nathan Strieby and the several SoHi junior varsity football players who assisted in the camp.

Sponsor makes trip worthwhile for students
Mrs. Jen's fifth- and sixth-grade class would like to thank ConocoPhillips for sponsoring our Peterson Bay field trip. We appreciate it. Without ConocoPhillips, we would not have been able to go. It was so much fun just being there.

Military appreciation forum a huge success
Several veterans and active members of our military recently visited Kenai Central High School to share their knowledge and experiences with our students. Our community is extremely fortunate to have such dedicated individuals. The sacrifices they have made, and continue to make, provide inspiration to our students.

Scholarships help students achieve goals
Nikiski High School would like to thank the local businesses and agencies that so graciously gave scholarships to our students this year and their representatives who attended Nikiski Awards Night on May 12.

Safety comes first on path to bike success
The Kaleidoscope bike rodeo was a great success. The students learned a lot about bike safety from Kenai Police Officer Mitch Langseth, had helmets checked or purchased them from nurse Jane Fellman with Safe Kids and had fun learning on the course.

'It was an absolute hoot': Peninsula whisker aficionados enjoy World Championships
Last weekend's World Beard and Moustache Championships in Anchorage brought whiskered warriors from all over the world, including a few competitors from the Kenai Peninsula.

Redoubt watch
As of Saturday evening, Mount Redoubt remained on "watch" status and aviation color code orange, according to the Alaska Volcano Observatory. For more information, visit and look for the volcano information links.

'It's unifying': Relay for Life draws community support
"It's unifying."

Not a lot of budget buzz: Soldotna fiscal plan draws just two comments
At the first of two public hearings on a proposed $8 million Soldotna city operating budget for the coming fiscal year, only two residents came forward to make comments Wednesday.

Relay for Life begins today: Annual event raises funds for the American Cancer Society
Whether it is to honor someone fighting the disease, remember someone who has succumbed to it, or just to raise money for the fight against cancer, this weekend's Relay For Life is how many choose to support the American Cancer Society.

On the ice road again: Series to feature Carlile drivers
Flipping through television channels this evening, Alaskans may see some familiar faces when they click on the History Channel, as the third season of "Ice Road Truckers" will premier tonight and feature drivers from Carlile Transportation Systems.

Persistence pays off with positive results: Soldotna City Council appropriates funds to purchase land for library expansion
Choked up with emotion, the Library Board chair called Soldotna's decision to purchase land for a planned expansion of the city's public library "a testament to nearly two years of persistence."

Lava dome appears unstable
Seismic activity remains above background levels at Mount Redoubt and consists of small, discrete earthquakes in the summit region, according to the Alaska Volcano Observatory. AVO scientists report that the lava dome at the summit appears unstable and could fail with little or no warning. Dome failure would likely cause ash emissions to over 30,000 feet above sea level and possible lahars in the Drift River valley.

Photo feature: Bear spotting
A yearling brown bear rolls around on its back in the Russian River ferry parking lot earlier this month. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is working on a study of the bruins this week.

James 'Jim' E. Russell
Longtime Clam Gulch resident James "Jim" E. Russell, 67, died Friday, May 29, 2009 at his home in Clam Gulch. He was 67. Arrangements are pending with Peninsula Memorial Chapel.

Walter 'Red' Edward Martin
Walter "Red" Edward Martin died Saturday, May 23, 2009, at his home in Beaver Dam, Ariz. He was 82.

Michele Adrianne Pecora
Soldotna resident Michele Adrianne Pecora died Sunday, Oct. 12, 2008 in Kenai. She was 20.

Edith Galliher
Sterling resident Edith Galliher died Monday, May 25, 2009.

One lingering question: No matter where you go, everyone's problems are similar
On a cool lush green May morning about a year ago, I slid into my car packed full of junk, twisted the keys forward in the ignition and let it roll down my parents' driveway, my destination, over 5,000 road miles away, in Sterling.

Dream big, think small
For this year's graduating seniors, it's time to dream big. Or not.

Seriously folks, send us your fish tales and photos
In case you haven't noticed, the Clarion has a new weekly feature on Thursdays.

Which bear is which?: Study to add to knowledge of peninsula brown bears
Two brown bears were shot this past week, but both sows are back up and on their feet, just as the marksmen intended.

Get some nature into your kids at Kenai Refuge summer camps
Last summer, the weather in our part of Alaska left a lot to be desired. However, the one week of our "Get Out and Get Dirty" Refuge Summer Camp was the only full week of sunshine and blue skies. This year we are hoping for at least four weeks of fantastic outdoor weather since we have expanded the camps we are offering. There will be two different day camps offered and each session is limited to 15 campers; led by four skilled refuge staff leaders. Each week will be 99 percent outdoors and 100 percent hands-on!

Real Alaskan contest
While prying a reluctant razor clam from its lair a few days ago, an idea came over me: We ought to hold a local contest to see who best represents a "real Alaskan."

Photo feature: You go girl!
Annita Braun, a Skyview High School junior, recently completed the Skip Barber Formula Car Racing School at Mazda Laguna Seca Raceway in Monterey, Calif. During racing school Annita studied and applied professional racing techniques in an open wheel formula race car on the internationally recognized road racing facility. The school has a history of training professional race car drivers that are competing through out the world today. Annita, 15, got her start racing locally when she was 9 years old with the Kenai Peninsula Racing Lions Quarter Midgets. Then moved onto racing in the INEX Bandolero class at Northstar Raceway in Wasilla, where she was 2007 track and state class champion. In 2008 she was invited to attend the Lyn St. James Women in the Winners Circle, driver development program in Phoenix and Indianapolis. She plans to continue to work toward her goal of participating in professional Motorsports at the highest levels.

Talking points
At a recent meeting of the NoRSMen (North Road Supportive Men -- a benevolent society dedicated to the appreciation of cheap beer, El Stinko cigars, and a fuller understanding of communication between the sexes) we had a return visitor. Dweezil Mahoneigh, Knucks Mahoneigh's second cousin's son from Kansas, was on a return trip, and decided to spend an evening with us in B.B.'s garage.

Around the Peninsula

La Leche group to meet

Community News


Around the Peninsula

Relay for Life begins today

Romans Empire: Nikiski girls hoops coach steps down after 20 seasons, 8 titles
"She was money."

Mariners nip Stars: Homer going to state for 8th time in 9 years
Injury had already robbed Homer senior Chelsea Carr of two appearances at the small-schools state softball tournament. She wasn't about to allow Soldotna to take a second trip from her, as well.

Homer wins 2, makes state: Soldotna's season ends with win over Palmer, loss to Mariners
The Homer baseball team defeated Southcentral Conference foes Palmer and Soldotna on Saturday in Homer to earn a trip to the state baseball tournament starting Thursday at Hermon Brothers Field in Palmer.

West Valley tops Kenai: Kardinals eliminated from state on Friday
Playing on short rest Friday morning, after their game started more than two hours late the night before, the Kenai Central girls showed few lingering signs of weariness in the beginning of their consolation semifinal game against West Valley.

SoHi boys, Kenai girls fall at state
The Soldotna boys were a couple of unfortunate bounces away from playing for fourth place for the third straight season.

Sports Briefs

NPRSA holds Hershey Track Meet

Sports Briefs

Twins open season today

Church Briefs

Church celebrates 40th anniversary

Be grateful for the beauty that's surrounding you
1926. Paris. William Shirer, who would later author "The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich," is having a conversation with his good friend Grant Wood. Both had grown up in small towns in Iowa and known each other in school.

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