Monday, June 2, 2003

Battle heats up for CIRI control
ANCHORAGE (AP) The battle is heating up for control of Alaska's most profitable Native corporation, Anchorage-based Cook Inlet Region Inc.

Fairbanksans turn out for partial solar eclipse
FAIRBANKS (AP) At least 100 Fairbanksans turned out for a once-in-a-decade event in Interior Alaska a partial solar eclipse.

Mom in hospital sees graduation by video
KODIAK (AP) Cancer patient Maria Gonzalez watched her daughter's graduation from her bed in the Providence Kodiak Island Medical Center with the help of students in a high school class.

Total manager lays out plan for oil exploration
ANCHORAGE (AP) Paris-based oil giant Total will soon start drilling on the North Slope, according to the company's Alaska representative.

Last year's catch lowest on record since 1991
FAIRBANKS (AP) Blame it on a landslide two years ago that restricted access for dipnetters. Or maybe it's the fault of the erratic Copper River. Perhaps it's politics.

Young makes waves over proposed gasoline tax
WASHINGTON (AP) A Colorado congresswoman says she won't back off her opposition to a higher national gasoline tax, despite an unfriendly encounter with Alaska Rep. Don Young on the House floor.

Texas hunter angry over opened caribou parcels
ANCHORAGE (AP) Caribou hunter David Williams is angry about what airport security did to a bounty of meat he took home from an Alaska adventure.

Utilities consider court case for power line money
ANCHORAGE (AP) Railbelt utilities say they are weighing a lawsuit against the state to recover $28.5 million yanked back from a major power line project planned to link Anchorage and the Kenai Peninsula.

Body of missing Valdez doctor found
ANCHORAGE (AP) A Valdez doctor known for his wilderness skills was found dead in the water in the Port of Valdez Friday, two days after he was reported missing.

Salcha receives local disaster money
FAIRBANKS (AP) For the second year in a row, a Salcha subdivision has been declared a disaster area by the Fairbanks North Star Borough.

Borough to hold land auction on 32 parcels
FAIRBANKS (AP) The Fairbanks North Star Borough will hold a land auction June 7 to sell 32 remote parcels.

Alaska Zoo separates popular brown, polar bears
ANCHORAGE (AP) The Alaska Zoo has broken up one of its most popular attractions the exhibit combining Ahpun the polar bear and Oreo the brown bear.

Prudhoe spill larger than first reported
ANCHORAGE (AP) An oil spill at Prudhoe Bay is about 12 times larger than originally estimated, according to officials with the state Department of Environmental Conservation.

Tom Lee wins Spring King Salmon Derby
JUNEAU (AP) Tom Lee won the seventh annual Spring King Salmon Derby, sponsored by Tlingit-Haida Central Council, with the 42.3 pound, gutted and gilled king salmon.

Authorities link fire to woman's disappearance
ANCHORAGE (AP) Anchorage police have connected an arson at a vacant duplex to the disappearance of a young woman, but aren't saying how or why.

New food program operating in Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS (AP) A new food program will provide about 50,000 pounds a month of government food, including five-pound blocks of cheese, for the poor.

Jewelry store robbery nets sentence of nearly 10 years
ANCHORAGE (AP) A nineteen-year-old man was sentenced Friday to nearly ten years in federal prison for the armed robbery of an Anchorage jewelry store last fall.

Bears being relocated away from McGrath
McGRATH (AP) Rather than shooting wolves from airplanes and helicopters, biologists are capturing and moving bears in hopes that it will give moose calves in the McGrath area a better chance to survive.

Appeals court says 99 years too harsh for trooper's murder
ANCHORAGE (AP) The Alaska Court of Appeals has directed a Superior Court judge to reconsider the 99-year sentence for second-degree murder he imposed on John Phillips, who killed Alaska State Trooper Bruce Heck in 1997.

Tok wildfire slows, but still a problem
ANCHORAGE (AP) A wind shift, increased humidity, lower temperatures and lots of fire retardant stalled a wildfire near Tok, but not until the blaze tried to make a run toward the Glenn Highway.

Engine-room fire strands hundreds of Alaska ferry passengers
ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) Alaska's largest state ferry will remain sidelined until at least Wednesday, further straining the state Marine Highway System, which was trying to appease hundreds of stranded passengers Friday.

School vandals strike again
ANCHORAGE (AP) Vandals spray-painted green and gold graffiti over one-third of an Anchorage high school and pumped glue into locks on classroom doors and lockers on the building, causing an estimated $50,000 in damage.

Hiker scares off three bears
ANCHORAGE (AP) About a mile north of McHugh Creek, still within scent of families barbecuing at one of the most popular highway waysides in Alaska, Jim Leslie believes he had a near-death encounter with three bears.

Phillies sweep double-header with Montreal
PHILADELPHIA Tomas Perez hit a two-run double to help back another impressive outing by Brett Myers as the Philadelphia Phillies completed a doubleheader sweep of the Montreal Expos with a 4-1 victory Sunday.

Struggling Sosa's single beats Astros in extra innings
CHICAGO After striking out five times over 15 scoreless innings, Sammy Sosa hit an RBI single in the bottom of the 16th to give the Chicago Cubs a 1-0 win over the Houston Astros on Saturday.

Detroit's fifth-inning rally spoils Clemens' run at history
DETROIT The Rocket misfired again.

A's top Royals behind clutch blast from Byrnes
KANSAS CITY, Mo. Eric Byrnes hit a three-run homer with two outs in the ninth inning off Kansas City closer Mike MacDougal, boosting the Oakland Athletics over the error-plagued Royals 7-6 Saturday.

Really, no pressure
It's a nice round number, one that Roger Clemens is learning doesn't always come easy.

Photo feature: Dirty work
Mark Samson, from left, Henry Pungowiyi and Daniel Alexie volunteer their time to dig in and put plants and flowers around Kenai on Saturday. The plantings were planned by the Kenai Beautification Committee.

Mountain trail open windows to the wilderness
Budget deficit and high gas prices aside, Alaskans have it good. This is one of the few places in the country where tourists from around the world come to ogle at the sights we see out our car windows as part of our daily commutes.

Many help Nikiski High graduates make wonderful memories
Nikiski High's Graduation Class of 2003 Committee would like to thank the following businesses for their wonderful donations in making our "Oh, the Places You'll Go" After Graduation party a success.

Cemetery group says thanks
The Kasilof Cohoe Cemetery Association would like to thank the Soldotna Lions and the other volunteers for their part in the spring cleanup. We get many compliments about the appearance of the cemetery and it is due in a large part to all of you.

School board to discuss Nikiski schools consolidation tonight
At the risk of sounding like "deja vu all over again," the Nikiski Area Student Achievement Interest Group wants to increase awareness that the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District superintendent really will recommend closure of Nikiski Elementary School to the school board at tonight's meeting.

Newman holds off Gordon to win at Dover
DOVER, Del. Ryan Newman lost power steering, but not determination, and held off Jeff Gordon to win Sunday at Dover International Speedway.

Plan calls for 1 elementary in Nikiski starting in fall 2004
After several months of community discussions not to mention protests the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Board of Education will vote Monday night on the consolidation of Nikiski and North Star elementary schools.

Home Depot extending lease option
Kenai will have to wait on Home Depot.

Relay for Life targets goal of raising funds to find cure for cancer
The thick, black clouds hanging low in the sky and threatening to unleash a downpour would have scared some people into running for cover, but for those who have stared cancer in the face, a little stormy weather is just a walk in the park or more appropriately, a walk around the track.

Student activities dangling in limbo
Tim Delaney may have more time on his hands next year, but he's not pleased about it.

Jury convicts Nikiski couple of 180 counts of animal cruelty in second trial
ANACONDA, Mont. A Justice Court jury found Jon and Athena Harman of Nikiski guilty of 180 counts each of animal cruelty Saturday for transporting a tractor trailer full of 180 animals, mostly collies, 2,240 miles in filthy and miserable conditions and denying them food and water.

Soldotna council OKs budget, sets levy rate
The Soldotna City Council unanimously adopted a $5.9 million budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1 and approved a resolution setting the property tax levy rate at 1.65 mills, during its regular meeting Wednesday.

Nikiski girl gets travel story published
"I was born in Vietnam. I mainly lived in an orphanage. I was sad living there. One day my new mom and dad and sister came. My sister, Juliette, brought some Barbies. I had never seen Barbies before. I had fun. We went on an airplane. It flew high in the sky. There was good food to eat. It was a long way to get to my new home in Alaska. I'm glad to have a new family and three new sisters. I miss Vietnam a little, but I like it in Alaska."

CPGH takes step toward expansion
The first step toward literally growing Central Peninsula Gener-al Hospital was taken Thursday evening when the hospital's board of directors approved a resolution to move forward with a hospital expansion and remodeling plan.

George Andrew Coombes
Longtime Nikiski resident George Andrew Coombes died, Wednesday, May 28, 2003, at his home in Nikiski. He was 59.

Brian Lawrence Halvarson
Lifelong Alaskan Brian Lawrence Halvarson died Tuesday, May 27, 2003, at his Anchorage apartment following an epileptic seizure. He was 27.

Michael Demchenko
Longtime Seward resident Michael Demchenko died Tuesday, May 27, 2003, at Heritage Place in Soldotna. He was 82.

Gary H. Barnes
Gary H. Barnes of Sterling died Friday, May 30, 2003, at Central Peninsula General Hospital after a lengthy illness and complications from Hepatitis C. He was 46.

Delores Elizabeth Ann Andersen
Longtime Kenai resident Delores Elizabeth Ann Andersen died Sunday, May 25, 2003, at her home in Kenai surrounded by family and friends after a long battle with cancer. She was 66.

Jedediah Strong Luton
Soldotna youth Jedediah Strong Luton died Friday, May 30, 2003, at his home after a courageous battle with cancer. He was 13.

Beatrice 'Bebe' Christine Fletcher
Soldotna resident Beatrice "Bebe" Christine Fletcher died Wednesday, May 28, 2003, at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage. She was 66.

Senior citizens more vulnerable to crime
One of the sad aspects of life today is that each year about 2 million older Americans are victims of crime. ... The appalling number of offenses against them must be addressed, and with unique approaches and resources.

What's the threat posed by Iran?
WASHINGTON In some ways, Iran may seem more of a menace in both terrorism and weapons than Iraq did. Still, administration officials are talking as though a military strike is the last thing on their minds.

World hopes U.S. won't deal with Iran like it did with Iraq
What's worrying Washington is the information that al-Qaida members in Iran took part in the recent bombing attacks in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, as well as suspicions that Teheran is developing nuclear weapons.

Those trying to set state's sails on new course deserve help
"The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails."

Bush goes own way on G-8 summit
KRAKOW, Poland Seldom in the 28-year history of economic summits of the world's big industrial powers has there been so much personal chemistry among the major players, both for better and for worse. And so little likely to get done that President Bush is all but giving the event a pass.

Pondering life's big mysteries
Do you imagine what might have been? What could have been? What maybe should have been?

New train route takes 'Clarkies' to Astoria
LINNTON, Ore. The state bought three used train cars from Canada for the Lewis & Clark Explorer. The federal government reworked the line, parts of which hadn't seen a train in years.

Community News
Soldotna library hosts summer programAYEA annual camp planned

Awrey places 2nd in fund-raising pageant
University of Washington student Julianne Awrey of Kenai, 20, came in second place in the 2003 Miss Greek Pageant in an event that recognized talent, glamour and fund-raising skills. Participants of the 17th annual Miss Greek Pageant, held at UW's Meany Hall on May 19, raised $50,000 to benefit Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center. Awrey also was one of the top four in fund-raising.

Club News
SoHi skiers plan garage saleNikiski Lions seek 'Grouch

Riding the winds and waves
HOOD RIVER, Ore. They are returning now, the wind worshippers who swarm into this scenic Columbia River town every year from all corners of the world to squirm into their wetsuits, hop onto their windsurfing boards and go tearing across the whitecaps at 30 mph and more.

Soroptimists recognize area women
Soroptimist International of Twin Cities held its annual awards ceremony at Charlotte's Restaurant in Kenai on May 22, honoring three women as part of the Women Helping Women program.

Around the Peninsula
Wagoner to speak at Soldotna chamberCooper Landing chamber to meetKDLL board meets TuesdayWilliams to give state of Kenai addressHistorical society board to meetSpace available at Kenai Community GardensSocial security rep to visit peninsulaBoys and Girls Club plans girls basketball campCooper Landing Gun Club to host women's clinicDonations, volunteers needed for golf classic

Photo: Scholarship
Anne Marie Verba, a 2003 Skyview High School graduate, receives a scholarship check from Sterling Elementary School Student Council President Melissa Massey

Photo: Going for a spin
Colt Ratcliff, 7, rides in a go-cart for the first time in Soldotna. Colt is from Anchorage and stopped to have some fun while visiting Kenai and Soldotna for the day.

Krista and Chad ArthurKatrina and Ryan PierceChelsie and Derrick Medina

Lamb, Auger marry in December
Michele Elizabeth Lamb and Calvin Miles Auger were married Friday, Dec. 27, 2002, at The Old Church in Portland, Ore.

Around the Peninsula
Umpires neededAnimal Sanctuary holds adoption fund-raiserVisitors center begins interpretive programCommunity Patrol training slatedKenai chamber luncheon plannedHunger awareness day begins ThursdayKenai Firefighters plan golf tournamentRegistration for 5K run-walk encouragedSkyview class of 1993 looking for classmates

Peninsula People
Soldotna man completes medical schoolMayer earns prestigious scholarshipTebughna graduates 2 seniorsArea students named to deans' lists

Allen, Zylstra plan Hawaiian wedding
Christine J. Allen and Benjamin J. Zylstra will be married at sunset Monday, June 9, 2003, at the Grand Wailea Chapel in Maui, Hawaii.

Froman, Stoltzfus plan June nuptials
Brittany Froman and Jared Stoltzfus of Sterling, Colo., have announced their plans to marry Friday, June 27, 2003, at Pioneer Park in Sterling, Colo.

Hero of the week
Jim Kruse and family wish to thank all those who helped put out the fire at their residence on May 7.

Get to know your sled dogs
To many people, sled dogs are a symbol of Alaska life. They have been an important part of this state's past, such as their 1925 emergency delivery of diphtheria serum to Nome.

My best friend
Eight-year-old Simon has found a great hiding place from the dog in his house. Simon belongs to Ellen McDonald of Soldotna.

Perry leads field by two strokes
DUBLIN, Ohio The cold wind was whipping so hard when Kenny Perry got to the first tee that he figured even par would be enough for him to keep the lead in the Memorial.

Showers let up just in time for races
The rain went away just in time for the racers to play.

Woods late charge steals show from Perry's win
DUBLIN, Ohio Even when he's far behind and has few holes left, Tiger Woods refuses to relinquish center stage.

UAA lands Leman
It's official. Whitney Leman, the three-time Alaska girls basketball small schools player of the year, will trade the Ninilchik Wolverines' blue and gold for the green and gold of the University of Alaska Anchorage Seawolves.

Costa grits out five-set victory
PARIS More than 4 1/2 hours into his third five-set victory at the French Open, Albert Costa leaned over the net, head down, tongue hanging. The defending champion appeared to be peering into a well, searching for drops of energy.

Reaching for Star's record
Sometimes the moon is enough. This was the case last Saturday in Anchorage when Kenai High graduate Dallas Baldwin attempted to equal the lofty heights of 5 feet, 6 inches, at the Alaska School Activities Association's State Track and Field Championships in Anchorage.

Greene, Guevara win gold at Home Depot Invitational
CARSON, Calif. Olympic champion Maurice Greene, buoyed by an attitude adjustment, sped to victory in the men's 100 meters, and Mexican star Ana Guevara triumphed easily in the women's 400 meters at the first Home Depot Track & Field Invitational on Sunday.

Ducks stay afloat
ANAHEIM, Calif. The goal that gave Anaheim hope came on a shot Martin Brodeur never lets in. The goal that got them back into the Stanley Cup finals came on a shot Ruslan Salei never puts in.

Capriati, Venus Williams ousted from Open
PARIS Venus Williams lost again in a Grand Slam tournament, only this time it wasn't against her sister.

Sources: Silas gets Cavs job
Paul Silas will be the new coach of the Cleveland Cavaliers after reaching agreement with the team on a long-term contract, The Associated Press learned Sunday.

Bending it like Beckham
It's no secret that high school soccer on the Kenai Peninsula has grown by leaps and bounds over the past few seasons. Just where all those skilled, talented and polished players have been coming from has been a bit of a mystery.

Sports Briefs
Homer hoop camp slated for Wednesday228.4-pounder leads Homer derbyPeninsula drag racers fare wellRun for the River registration openSchilling not expected to miss start

Triple test is tough
NEW YORK A safety pin derailed Spectacular Bid.

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