Saturday, June 5, 2010

Government needs to get tougher on resource extraction companies
In light of the disaster in the Gulf of Mexico, does anyone still actually have faith in the permit process for natural resource extraction? BP is obviously at fault, but it is the government which failed to stop them from drilling there or failed to require them to come up with a proper plan for dealing with this kind of disaster. I'm guessing most people read the article the other day about BP being largely responsible for the pathetic attempt at curbing the damage of the Exxon Valdez spill. Decades later, what has really changed? Even before this disaster, BP's negligence caused a recent significant spill in our own state and caused another disaster which killed people in Texas.

Pebble supporter praises Pebble partner
As Alaskans, it is important that we assess the types of corporations we want to have operating in our State - as business partners and as our neighbors. I think all too often we fail to embrace companies that are doing good work both here in our home state and elsewhere.

Let's be clear on Palin
I would like to comment to the letter by Norm Olson, dated June 3, 2010: subject "Mama Bear."

Pebble Mine could help Southwest economy
I found KTUU News' recent series "Not Making the Grade," which addresses the challenges facing rural Alaska schools, to be quite insightful. However, prior to each online segment was an ad opposing the Pebble Project, and I was struck by the irony. Here's a series about the educational and economic struggles facing rural communities, which was preceded by an ad opposing a project that could create sustainable economic opportunities for rural Alaska.

Kudos for Brown Bears' and fans
The Central Peninsula Health Foundation would like to thank the Kenai River Brown Bears for their efforts to raise funds to support local cancer patients.

Relay for life, hope for a cure
Teresa Gamble is a survivor. That's why she participating in Relay for Life of the Central Peninsula this weekend at Skyview High School.

Burn ban lifted on the Kenai
A burn ban was lifted Thursday for the Kenai Peninsula. Residents must still follow the terms on their permits and call each day to the phone number listed on their permit to record his or her burn. Forestry will evaluate the fire danger rating daily and adjust the burn suspension accordingly.

Kenai closes to king fishing
The Department of Fish and Game will close the Kenai River drainage for early run king salmon sport fishing this weekend, and is also restricting the fishery for naturally-produced kings on the Kasilof River.

Businesses revamp in anticipation of boot ban
Local businesses have begun changing their stocks in anticipation for the ban on felt soled angling boots.

Photo feature: Mother's love
A cow moose nudges one of her twin calves out of the frigid water of Grewingk Glacier Lake at dusk recently. The calf ran to the water from a stand of alders as its mother was violently fighting off another cow that appeared to be trying to take the calves away. The second calf died in the brush during the struggle. The cow worked for several minutes to keep the remaining calf on its feet once they both got out of the lake. They then walked down the shore before returning to the forest.

Taking a more measured response
WHEN PRESIDENT OBAMA ANNOUNCED A one-year delay on offshore drilling last month - in response to the still gushing BP deepwater rig in the Gulf of Mexico - reaction was swift and not unexpected.

Preventing or controling the spread of aquatic invasive species
In an effort to prevent the arrival and spread of aquatic invasive species, the Alaska Board of Fisheries voted unanimously to prohibit the use of felt-soled wading boots while angling in Alaska's freshwater streams beginning Jan. 1, 2012. This action was proposed by Trout Unlimited because of concerns that felt soled wading boots can transport aquatic invasive species. Some anglers prefer felt-soled wading boots because of the traction they provide on slippery gravel streambeds. A drawback of felt soles is that they remain wet for extended periods after removal from water. The wet felt material provides an environment for pest organisms to survive outside of an infected stream. Unknowingly these organisms can then be introduced to a new body of water the next time the boots are worn.

The Snowshoe Hare: A short lifetime of constant predation
Spring is the best time of year to observe snowshoe hares, especially along Refuge roads early in the morning. Usually vigilant, hares appear to temporarily let down their guard during springtime. Some hares are attracted to the early growth - horsetails, grasses and other plants - that sprout in the spring along the edges of roads. Others are interacting socially; it is their breeding season. Hares are less visible during the remainder of the year, although they may still be nearby.

SoHi gym open for volleyball
The Soldotna High School gym is open for summer volleyball on Tuesday and Thursday from 6 to 7:30 p.m. All former, current and future players are welcome. Bring appropriate gear on sunny days, because outdoor nets will be set up. For more information, contact Bruce King at 262-9501 or

All American volleyball camp slated
All American Volleyball Camps and the Peninsula Midnight Sun Volleyball Club are hosting a skills camp at Soldotna and Skyview high schools from Aug. 3 to 5. The All American camp features skill instruction from top college, U.S. national team and professional players. All American has conducted high school camps on the Kenai Peninsula for over 15 years. Past coaches included former Olympians and national college players of the year.

SoHi softball looks for small-schools title
For the second time in program history, Soldotna's softball team is participating in the small-schools state tournament today and Saturday at Cartee Fields in Anchorage. The Stars aren't satisfied with just earning a berth to state, they're looking to bring some hardware back to the Kenai Peninsula.

Masters Ski Club to start June 7
The Tsalteshi Trails Masters Ski Club will begin summer training on June 7 behind Skyview High School. Meeting times are 6 p.m. Mondays for hill bounding (bring ski poles) and circuit training. Participants must be members of the Tsalteshi Trails Association. An additional fee of $25 per season or $45 per year will be collected for the Masters Ski Club.

Jeff's call: Fans should check out ABL blog
With Peninsula Oilers players and coaches due into town this weekend and Alaska Baseball League games set to start next week, fans may be getting a little anxious to get their ABL fix.

Bird Homestead Golf Report: Crew has the Bird in shape
Golf is the sport of the season out on Funny River Road. Bird Homestead Golf Course had an excellent weekend of fun-filled golfing. The Memorial Day weekend was very busy with several new players checking out the course. Larry Hamilton and his crew have been working daily on the greens and they look great. We would like to thank Steve Ellis and Sissy Bird for their volunteer time in filling moose tracks on the fairways and Jeff Gillman for thinning trees in between the fairways. It is really looking nice.

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