Friday, June 9, 2006

Business Briefs
Chambers set schedules Land Trust holds benefit Agrium boss moves to Canada Alliance Web site updated Local agents awarded Walls named home mortgage consultant

Art Briefs
Moose callers hold clinic Homer council events add up Drama camps to train future stars Art sought for Ketchikan school

Kenai Peninsula Online - Alaska Newspaper -

Activities add up at river fest
The Kenai River Festival, which kicks off at 10 a.m. Saturday with a 5K Run/Walk starting from the City of Kenai Green Strip, has two days worth of art, music and activities over the course of the weekend.

What’s Happening
Best Bet Events and Exhibits Entertainment Upcoming Events Films Down the Road Anchorage Events

Breaking up: hard to do, harder to watch
Last week I wrote that I had rarely been as depressed leaving a movie as I was when I walked out of “X-Men 3.” That was a depression born of deep geek comic book love torn asunder on the cold, sharp rocks of Hollywood’s bottom-line mentality. This is turning out to be a red-letter summer, because the depression I felt this week was nearly as bad as last week’s, but in a different way. I left the theater showing Vince Vaughn and Jennifer Aniston’s “hilarious” comedy about breaking up feeling exhausted and head-achy after being subjected to a long series of screaming fights and cruel manipulations, with jokes few and far between.

Family Traditions
Folksinger Arlo Guthrie, whose 1967 hit “Alice’s Restaurant” gave new meaning to a little bit of littering and a whole lot of social consciousness, returns to the Kenai Peninsula next month, thanks to Downward Dog Productions.

Students honored by donations
The Skyview National Honor Society would like to thank Soldotna Safeway and Mick Galic for their continuous generous contributions to Skyview. Over the last 16 years, Safeway and Manager Mick Galic have continued to be strong community supporters of the Skyview National Honor Society programs and have generously donated throughout the year to different projects such as the holiday food baskets and assisting with bakery concessions. The Skyview National Honor Society greatly appreciates Safeway and all the contributions and assistance they have continued to provide over the last 16 years. Again, thank you for your continued community support.

Visitors get benefits without the taxes
The annual visitors are back, and the voters need to be aware of their cost to us taxpayers. With property values going up, and additional sources of revenue for the borough needing at be found, I wonder why the voters chose not to tax them with either a bed tax or the 1 percent sales tax, which could be put into seasonal effect.

Judges get high marks
The Veterans of Foreign Wars Ladies Auxiliary would like to express sincere thanks to Mayor Cave Carey and to Joyce and Paul Fischer for serving as judges for the Department of Alaska VFW Ladies Auxiliary-sponsored Vicki Webb Nelson Scholarship Program. Your willingness to help is always greatly appreciated.

Turning to crime is sign parents aren’t doing their job
Residents of the area of 4th & Haller:

Contributions star at talent show
The Skyview National Honor Society, Mock Trial and Community Schools would like to thank the following people and businesses for their contributions to another successful, annual Skyview Talent Show, which was held in April.

Support heated up winter gala fundraiser
We wish to extend our thanks to those community supporters who made our Winter Gala fundraiser so successful. Profits from that event were used to sponsor our “New Horizons” Teen Event in March.

Support helped students work at learning
The students and teachers of the Kenai Central High School Work Experience Program would like to take this opportunity to thank all of those who have helped us this school year. The Kenai community has as always stepped forward and welcomed our student workers into their businesses. Without this wonderful support, we would not be able to continue the student’s workplace education. The administration, counselors and faculty are all instrumental in the success of this essential program.

CES gets its money back
By a narrow vote of 5-4 Tuesday night, the Kenai Borough Assembly agreed to reimburse Central Emergency Services the $1 million it contributed to construction of the new Emergency Response Center now nearing completion on Wilson Lane in Soldotna.

Kenai council chipping away at retirement debt
Kenai City Council members put a Band-Aid on an ailing public employee pension plan Wednesday night.

Beetles aren’t dead, neither is tree removal
More than a million acres of spruce forest on the Kenai Peninsula has suffered and died from bark beetle infestation, and much of it is considered to be at moderate to high risk for wildfire.

Tight budget passed
The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly adopted a budget Tuesday that will spend $58.7 million in fiscal year 2007, but will not require an increase in the boroughwide property tax mill rate.

Kenai neighbors help with $611,000 for United Way
The theme, “Neighbors Helping Neighbors,” was apparent in the recently ended Kenai Peninsula United Way campaign as evidenced by the amount of giving, according to the campaign chair.

KWJG to trim evening shows
Despite bare bones funding, the Kasilof-based community radio station KWJG has chugged along for eight years, propelled on the steam of an all-volunteer staff. But rising costs and declining funds are forcing KWJG and KMJG, its sister station in Homer, to scale back, eliminating all original programming during evening hours on weekdays.

Driver trapped in rollover
A Soldotna concrete mixing tuck company lost one of its 12 mixing trucks Thursday after it rolled into a ditch alongside the intersection of Kalifornsky Beach Road and the Sterling Highway.

Matthew Allen ‘Crumpy’ Crump
Former Ninilchik resident Matthew Allen “Crumpy” Crump died Saturday, June 3, 2006, in a fishing accident at Toronto Lake in Toronto, Kan. He was 36.

Stephen Campbell Dunk
Former Soldotna resident Stephen Campbell Dunk died Wednesday, May 3, 2006, in Gig Harbor, Wash., at the home of his daughter Susan Clarke and surrounded by his immediate family. He was 82.

Terry Ann Hernandez
Kasilof resident Terry Ann Hernandez died Monday, June 5, 2006, in Kenai. She was 36.

People to blame for bear behavior
A series of recent bear sightings, attacks and shootings force us humans to remember we aren’t the only ones at the dominant end of the food chain.

Initiative would limit taxes: Taxpayer group aims for more control over borough finances
The Alliance of Concerned Taxpayers (A.C.T.) submitted an initiative petition that could limit the total revenue collected by borough taxes. This initiative, called ACT-CAP would stabilize property taxes and over time save peninsula taxpayers a lot of money. ACT-CAP allows cost of living increases based on borough population growth or loss. Additional increases above the cost of living formula would have to be approved by voters. This limit is designed to control the expansion of government services to those that the public approves. ACT-CAP puts the public back in control of future growth in borough services and spending.

Swarming the Swanson
Editor’s note: A no print day on Memorial Day created the rare occurrence where everyone in the Clarion’s newsroom had the same day off. The landmark event was commemorated by a plan to do a one-day paddle down the Swanson River, a 24-mile snake between the put-in point at the end of Swanson River Road in Sterling and Captain Cook State Park in Nikiski.

Fishing heating up with the weather
For anxious anglers put off by this year’s fish-halting cool spring, the wait is over. The water temperatures and river levels have risen. As a result the kings are in, and even a few sockeye, too.

Blackbird of the bogs: An early victim of global warming?
As I walked around the margin of a small pond on the Kenai National Wildlife Refuge in mid-May checking on the seasonal progress of breeding wood frogs, I flushed a jet-black bird feeding along the edge of the water ahead of me. When it landed on a birch sapling nearby and I looked at it closely through my binoculars, its jet-black appearance at a distance had transformed into a beautiful iridescent bluish-green gloss in the reflected sunlight. The iridescence reminded me of the plumage of displaying birds-of-paradise from New Guinea. But I was looking at a male rusty blackbird, which is sometimes referred to as the “blackbird of the bogs.” Its duller slate-colored female companion was also nearby but was more secretive. Both sexes of rusty blackbirds have conspicuous light-colored eyes resulting from their pale irises. Later in the year their plumage will take on a more brownish appearance from which their name “rusty” is derived.

Around the Peninsula
Historical Society to meet Red Cross golf tourney set Baseball event seeks sponsors, players

Crime Stoppers seeks info
Crime Stoppers is requesting information on the following crime: On May 25, the Kenai Police Department received a report of multiple thefts from vehicles. Thieves had entered multiple unlocked vehicles during the night on 4th Avenue, Gill Street, McKinley Street and Haller Street, stealing a camera, an MP3 player, a briefcase, jewelry, compact discs, a pair of binoculars, a cell phone, a radar detector, tools, money and other items.

Around the Peninsula
Hope fundraiser set Peace group to meet Foster care, adoption workshops available Swim lessons to make a splash NPRSA events set Moose chapter kick-off set Got a question?

Oilers get past Twins
The American Legion Twins got a good look at some big time players, and the Peninsula Oilers got warmed up for tonight’s season opener as the two teams squared off in an exhibition game Thursday at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai.

Sports Brief
The American Legion Twins baseball team will host the Peninsula Oilers in an exhibition game today at 6 p.m. at Coral Seymour Memorial Park in Kenai.

Sports Briefs
The Kenai Peninsula district of the National Barrel Horse Association held an event Wednesday at the Soldotna Equestrian Arena. There are weekly races on Wednesdays at 7 p.m. through August. The races are for weekly points and a nightly jackpot.

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