Friday, June 4, 2004

Twins excited about new season
Everybody has seen a cool movie trailer only to go to that movie and be disappointed with the results.

Feds will stay out of Area M salmon fishery
ANCHORAGE The federal government will not override state regulators who loosened catch limits this year in the False Pass fishery.

Business turns puke into profit
BELLINGHAM, Wash. Somewhere, as you read this, a long-legged, heart-faced barn owl is stretching out its neck and delicately upchucking.

Travel operator pleads not guilty on 21 charges
ANCHORAGE (AP) The owner of a bankrupt Anchorage tour company has been arraigned on federal criminal charges of wire and credit card fraud.

Business Briefs
Area chambers set scheduleVendors, parade entries soughtAlaska businesses donate to jellyfish exhibitPhysician recognized for worker safety

Spit marks the spot for hot fishing
Anglers looking for some full throttle fishing excitement may want to head south this weekend.

Anglers would benefit from tips from pros
POCATELLO, Idaho Bill Bowman made his trademark brass minnow as a junior at Utah State University to catch brown trout in the Logan River.

Trailing along
A nationwide celebration of hiking and trails will again come to the Kenai Peninsula this year in the form of a nine-mile hike through some of the area's most scenic wilderness.

Safety first, then hit the woods
NEW YORK Hiking is a great vacation activity for families healthy, inexpensive and fun.

Josh Groban happy under the radar
NEW YORK Josh Groban's latest album has outsold the likes of Britney Spears, Jay-Z and Alicia Keys, and dates on his spring tour sold out in a couple of hours.

Art Briefs
Museum plans plant saleOutdoor art exhibition accepts entriesAlaska Arts Institute slatedLogo design contest announcedWriters' conference coming upWatercolor workshop offered

Photographer promotes cultural diversity through his portraits
As a photographer, Phil Borges has traveled the globe in order to capture pictures from quickly disappearing indigenous cultures that rarely are seen by the rest of the world.

Small book pictures big animals well
Whale watching has become one of Alaska's favorite sightseeing opportunities. Nothing quite compares to the awed thrill of getting close to the planet's biggest animals. But few people have that experience. And even those who do have difficulty conveying it to others.

What's Happening
Best BetsEvents and ExhibitsEntertainmentUpcoming EventsFilmsDown the RoadAnchorage Events

Leman speaks for the people with his honest declarations
Regarding Lt. Gov. Loren Leman's recent support of Mike Miller, the Lisa Murkowski campaign and Sen. Ted Stevens' comments, I felt compelled to write.

Hockey association says thanks for entire community's support
At this time I would like to recognize and thank the following sponsors for the 2003-2004 Kenai Peninsula Hockey Association season: Arby's for the Atoms and Mini Mite teams, Redline Sports for both Mite teams, Dr. Barton for the Mite C and Squirt C teams, The Floor Center for the Squirt B team, Agrium for the Squirt B and Mite C teams, Wells Fargo for the Pee Wee teams, First National Bank of Anchorage for PeeWee C, Kenai River Sport Fishing Association for the Pee Wee B team, Old Grey Mare Antiques and Gift for the Bantams, All American Electric for the Midget U-16 team, Unocal for Midget U-16 C and Spenard Builders Supply for the U-17 Midget C team.

Nixon's secret taping system no secret inside the Beltway
There was an AP story on Sunday about the passing of former Watergate chief counsel Sam Dash at age 79. The article credits Mr. Dash with uncovering the now infamous Nixonian taping system during the Watergate congressional hearings that were conducted in the early 1970s. Certain recordings made by the system, along with the congressional hearings and aggressive reporting by the Washington Post and New York Times, led to the eventual resignation of Richard Nixon as America's 37th president some 30 years ago, come Aug. 8.

Rush Limbaugh tactics used to smear Knowles
It is sad, but it had to happen. The tactics used by the Bush campaign to smear John Kerry have come to Alaska. The Washington Republican smear artists are attacking Tony Knowles on the behalf of Lisa Murkowski. Alaskans don't see the Bush negative campaign ads (targeted to particular states) because Republicans believe Alaskans are not smart enough to vote for anyone other than Bush.

Governor must keep hearing state must live within its means
The special session that Gov. Frank Murkowski has called is an insult to us all! He could not trust in the collective decision of our representatives and the senators to determine the feasibility and productivity of this costly measure.

Newsmaker: Ryan Newman
DOVER, Del. Ryan Newman swept both races last year at the Dover International Speedway and this Sunday's MBNA 400 Salute to Heroes comes as Newman is still looking for his first victory of the season. Ranked ninth in the Nextel Cup Series point standings, the third-year driver knows he needs to start putting together consistent finishes in the top 10 to assure himself a spot in the "Chase for the Championship" in the final 10 races.

NASCAR Notes - Chase for championship really begins this week
DOVER, Del. -- Starting with last Sunday's 600-mile race at the Lowe's Motor Speedway, the Nextel Cup Series now is in a stretch of races most drivers consider to be the heart of the schedule.

This Week: MBNA America 400
(Race No. 13 of 36)

Outspoken critic now working to help race teams cut costs
CONCORD, N.C. -- When Brett Bodine accepted a job as NASCAR's director of cost research, the only thing he had to promise was to clear all interviews in advance through the public relations office.

Plane flips after takeoff; no one hurt
A privately owned Cessna 180 airplane flipped over shortly after takeoff at the Kenai Municipal Airport at about 8 p.m. Wednesday.

Mayor won't seek re-election
After 18 years on the job, Kenai Mayor John Williams is stepping down.

Decreasing production means lower industry tax assessments
Taxes on Cook Inlet oil and gas facilities provide much-needed revenue to state and municipal governments, but each has specific purview over different parts of that infrastructure.

Soldotna man tagged in fish scam
An advertisement on a Poacher's Cove community bulletin board led to the arrest and conviction of a Soldotna man for running an illegal fish processing and sales facility, according to Alaska State Troopers.

Photo feature: Full serving
Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor Dale Bagley, school board member Sammy Crawford and Kenai Mayor John Williams share a story while volunteering at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank on Thursday afternoon during National Hunger Awareness Day.

Crime Stoppers seeks theft info
Central Peninsula Crime Stoppers is seeking information leading to the arrest of suspects involved in three thefts in May.

Voters will get say on police
Nikiski area voters will get to decide in October whether the community needs better law enforcement than it currently gets relying on an overstretched Alaska State Trooper force.

Dog dilemma has people howling
A two-year debate between two Kenai Peninsula residents claiming ownership to the same dog appears to have come to an impasse for both parties.

Photo feature: Feeling green
Young ferns carpet the ground in the Kenai Mountains earlier this week. Warm, moist weather has sped the transition from winter to summer.

Kenai finances on the rebound
The Kenai City Council on Wednesday approved a 2005 budget that restores a number of city services cut last year, including Sunday hours at the Kenai Community Library, expanded city dust control and funding for building maintenance.

Borough budget faces lean times
Rapidly falling property values in the Cook Inlet oil and gas infrastructure may soon force borough budget-writers to move where they have been reluctant to go before toward cutting services and jobs and increasing taxes, borough officials warned this week.

Dolores Anne Lee
Homer resident Dolores Anne Lee died Monday, May 31, 2004, at Providence Medical Center in Anchorage due to heart failure. She was 75.

Grace Marie Phipps
Grace Marie Phipps of Salunga, Pa., died Saturday, May 29, 2004, at Lancaster General Hospital in Pennsylvania of natural causes. She was 86.

Richard 'Ric' Williams
Soldotna resident Richard "Ric" Williams died Tuesday, June 1, 2004, at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage. He was 48.

Donald E. Jones
Nikiski resident Donald E. Jones died Friday, May 28, 2004, at his residence of natural causes. He was 73.

Ann K. Lawrence
Longtime Soldotna resident Ann K. Lawrence died Tuesday, June 1, 2004 due to complications from diabetes at the Providence Medical Center in Anchorage. She was 67.

Alaska's retirement costs climb; promised benefits must be paid
The public has heard a lot over the past several months about the increasing costs for the retirement programs for public employees under the Public Employees Retirement System (PERS) and for teachers under the Teachers Retirement System (TRS).

Alaska's U.S. Senate race promises to be exciting, expensive
You can feel it in the air and see it in print and hear it on television and radio. It's the quickening tempo of what will, by all accounts, be a monster campaign for one of Alaska's seats in the U.S. Senate.

Hunger is problem even on peninsula, but you can help
It's hard to escape the irony. Obesity currently is one of the biggest health problems in the United States. At the same time, all over the country, including the Kenai Peninsula, people are going to bed hungry.

Increasing drug costs could wipe out 'benefit'
Two major, recent studies agree: Even as seniors sign up for the new Medicare prescription-drug benefit, the ever-increasing price of pharmaceuticals threatens to wipe out any ''benefit.''...

Candidates can't forget intangible of 'likability'
Both the George W. Bush and the John Kerry campaigns should remember political history and note that in 1984, President Ronald Reagan won re-election and defeated former Vice President Walter Mondale not based on any one issue, but more on a vital intangible.

Thinking ahead fire season calls for vigilance, cooperation
Wildfire is one of those events like hurricanes and tornadoes that many people don't think about until the season is imminent or already well under way and trouble is at the doorstep. Given life's tribulations, this is understandable. And, it explains why we've devised programs and services to help inform and prepare people for natural disasters, to help mitigate the hazards.

Ax can stop dangerous slides on Alaska's snow, ice fields
ANCHORAGE Snow and ice accidents, strangely enough, usually start along about June, when Alaska days are long and warm.

Taking it slow, knowing limitations key to off-highway driving
LONGMONT, Colo. Taking the roads less traveled is a common theme for Colorado anglers, hunters and outdoor enthusiasts. It's about getting away from the crowds and exploring the backcountry, where pristine waters are filled with trout and that trophy buck is over the next ridge.

Around the Peninsula
Missions fund-raiser continuesRelay for Life slatedNikiski seniors hold fund-raiserBenefit dinner, auction plannedMasons to hold charity golf tourneyTree sale, hike planned

Around the Peninsula
Home-schoolers track meet todayHunger Awareness Day setBrain awareness walk, barbecue scheduledFund-raiser for fire department setBoys and Girls Club plans golf tourneyRed Cross tournament set

Digging starts at site of synagogue near Auschwitz
WARSAW, Poland (AP) Archeologists have begun excavations at the site of a synagogue near the former Auschwitz death camp, looking for a Torah scroll and other objects missing since the Nazis burned down the building in 1939.

Catholic Diocese of Orange makes cuts to save $1 million
SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) The Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange has cut 15 percent of its employees, closed two departments and downsized its administrative offices to save $1 million a year as it prepares to resolve clergy sex abuse claims.

Twenty-five years later, passions still strong on Southern Baptists' conservative takeover
HOUSTON (AP) Back in 1979, the Rev. Jimmy Allen thought the highlight of the Southern Baptist Convention's annual meeting would be a giant rally at the Astrodome featuring the Rev. Billy Graham.

Fifty years ago, Billy Graham made a big but not lasting impact in Britain
LONDON (AP) Plenty of people were suspicious when a clean-cut American evangelist arrived

U.S. Episcopalians protest treatment of Episcopal Church in Sudan
WASHINGTON (AP) More than 100 Episcopalians marched on the Sudanese Embassy in protest last week after the Muslim government seized the headquarters of the Episcopal Church of the Sudan.

Church Briefs
Speaker plannedVacation Bible school slatedConstruction INC plans school'Xtreme' Bible school plannedArgentinean evangelist to speakNoted Jewish speakers to visitMusic of India to be featuredWomen's prayer group to meet

Interfaith memorial at mosque remembers fallen soldiers
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) Members of eight faiths gathered at a mosque last week to memorialize those killed in the Iraq war and pray for peace.

Park officials nix baptisms in river
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) The Rev. Todd Pyle thought it was the perfect spot to baptize 12 new members of his church the river was calm and shallow and there was a shaded area offshore for people to stand.

Needed: A foundation firmer than our feelings
Studies on the moral values of children have shocked experts and educators. Kids seem to have concluded that lying, cheating and even carrying out violent acts are allowable if they feel strongly about doing them. Where did they get these ideas?

Lakers-Pistons finals might not be easy on the eyes
EL SEGUNDO, Calif. Shaquille O'Neal bills the NBA Finals as the Fantastic Four against the Wallace Guys and believes they'll be one of the most watched ever.

Smarty Jones linked with legendary horses Seabiscuit, Secretariat
NEW YORK Suddenly, Smarty Jones is being mentioned in the same breath as Secretariat and Seabiscuit.

Sentiment props up a legend only so long
The greatest champion any game has ever known has been dropping hints for months that he's done playing. At 64, Jack Nicklaus is not tired of golf as much as he is tired of trying to convince himself he can still win.

It's about time Servis got nervous
John Servis finally admitted that he's starting to get nervous. It's about time.

Owner of Pistons, Lightning quietly enjoying postseason
AUBURN HILLS, Mich. The owner of the Detroit Pistons was sitting courtside, watching his team in the playoffs. In front of his seat was a small TV, allowing him to keep tabs on the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Flames win Game 5 in OT
TAMPA, Fla. Thanks to Jarome Iginla's stamina and Oleg Saprykin's second effort, the Calgary Flames are one victory away from a Stanley Cup their coach insists nobody outside of Canada wants them to win.

Sutter complains about pro-Lightning bias
TAMPA, Fla. Calgary Flames coach Darryl Sutter deflected attention away from Ville Nieminen's suspension by complaining Wednesday that some NHL factions badly want the Tampa Bay Lightning to win the Stanley Cup.

Sports Briefs
Area racers tear it up in PalmerWilliams to apply for reinstatement at USCPowell wants to be an Olympian again

U.S. squad wins tuneup
FOXBORO, Mass. (AP) Brian McBride helped to make sure Claudio Reyna's 100th international game had a happy ending.

Argentine trio makes semifinals
PARIS (AP) Gustavo Kuerten's right hip hurt, plain and simple. A shot, a sprint, a lunge: Each was enough to cause pain, making his task that much tougher against a determined David Nalbandian in the French Open quarterfinals.

Capriati bows out at French Open tennis tournament
PARIS Head down, Jennifer Capriati shuffled past her mother and coach near the locker room beneath center court.

Birch Ridge Report: The camera doesn't lie: Birch Ridge columnist's glass is half empty
My new putter arrived. You know those old 60s movies where the hard-working executive practices putting in his office with a glass on the floor? Goes in with a plunk every time from at least 10 feet away. My glass obviously wasn't big enough ... or close enough. I've now placed a 2-quart pan on its side about 3 feet from the ball.

Giants sign Warner to mentor Manning
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) The New York Giants are taking some of the pressure off Eli Manning, signing Kurt Warner to be their caretaker quarterback until the top pick in the draft is ready.

Photo feature: Ducking in for a bite
Three harlequin duck drakes take flight after resting on a large rock in the Ninilchik River. This species frequents fast moving rivers and streams where they prey on crustaceans, mollusks, insects and fish.

Killer whales listed as depleted
ANCHORAGE The National Marine Fisheries Service has designated a small group of killer whales in Prince William Sound as depleted under the Marine Mammal Protection Act.

Rare white bison calf born
PHOENIX (AP) The owners of a small bison herd in northern Arizona were surprised to find one of their rare white buffalo had given birth to something even rarer: a white calf.

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