Posted: Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Thank you for your service and enjoy retirement. Recently Lt. Charles Bartolini retired from the Alaska State Troopers retired after 28-plus years with the department. That's a long career.

Birthdays, open house, games, barbecue and just plain fun! Steve Smith and Nancy St. John Smith invited family, area and Homer friends to their new Soldotna home over the weekend. Out-of-town guests were Nancy's brother Bob St. John, their sister Connie Preston and her daughter Carli from Bakersfield, Calif. Nancy's eldest daughter, Lisa Holland, a medical student at Stanford, another son and daughter Matt and Kaci Lonch also were on hand for the occasion The four Smith kids — Steve, Leigh, Annie and Jane, all residing in Anchorage — also were present for the celebration.

The Kenai Peninsula Senior Picnic was last week and what a turnout! More than 200 seniors came out for food and entertainment. Food was provided by the various senior centers and the city of Soldotna reserved Soldotna Creek Park. Center directors and volunteers served the food and provided entertainment. Nikiski Senior Citizens Center is getting a good reputation for their spectacular desserts, I heard from several people. Thanks to all for the hard work. Our seniors deserve a good time, and you provided it.

Not all seniors are in Alaska, but some of their hearts are. Last year to celebrate his 85 birthday and to fulfill his high school pact with a buddy, Donald Fraker died in a motorcycle accident on his way to Alaska. He was a longtime friend of Jim and Mary Duffy. Mary is struggling with her Parkinson's disease but still had this to say about Don, "A heart too big for his small body." Mr. Fraker will yet make the journey to Alaska when his children bring his ashes here this summer. We are lucky to live in a place that so many others just dream of.

Congratulations to the following Soldotna High School students who are the next year's cheerleading squad: Sarah Endries, Brit Emery, Alyssa Giles, Deana Glick, Aundria Cummings, Lacy Bush, Melissa Halama, Tonya Almaraz, Andrea Joule, Brooke Bailey, Jessie Schneider, Kelly Eshelman, Lindsey Wilson and Alecia Smith.

Faithful for giving us words of wisdom or thoughts to contemplate, the folks at Spenard Builders Supply leave you with this last one in print, "Most people are lonely because they build walls instead of bridges."

Speaking of bridges, for further quotes you will need to venture across the bridge and check out their marquee.

Summer Safe Kids safety tips childhood memories should be flavored with fun. Summertime activities might include trips to the beach, walks to the ice cream shop and rides around the neighborhood. But while you and your kids enjoy the seemingly carefree elements of summer, emergency room doctors know it as trauma season.

This summer, children ages 14 and under will be rushed to emergency rooms nearly 3 million times for serious injuries resulting from motor-vehicle crashes, drownings, bike crashes, pedestrian incidents, falls and other hazards. Don't take a vacation from safety. Close supervision, proper protective gear, and other simple prevention steps will help your child avoid danger. For more information on the Safe Kids campaign, visit the Safe Kids Web site at

Summer time often generates many more drink containers than other times of the year, as well. There are more recycling options on the Kenai Peninsula than there have been in the past, and the landfills are accepting PET No. 1 plastics (soda, water, etc.) and HDPE No. 2 plastic containers (milk jugs, windshield wiper cleaner and liquid laundry containers). Everything we can recycle makes a difference.

Thank you for submitting information and reading my column. I wish you health, happiness and friendship, and should you find love and wealth along the way, all the better!


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