Monday, June 30, 2003

Valdez city officials hold natural gas summit
VALDEZ (AP) In an effort to sort out his options in getting Alaska's natural gas to market, Gov. Frank Murkowski huddled with gas experts from Asia and the Lower 48 in a four-hour session in Valdez on Saturday.

Plane hits Loran tower's guy wire
KODIAK (AP) A chartered twin-engine plane snapped the guy wire of a 650-foot Loran tower when the plane got too close.

Fisheries board decision could increase crab yield
ANCHORAGE (AP) The Bering Sea commercial crab industry could become more lucrative under a regulatory change approved by the Alaska Board of Fisheries.

Fort Yukon, Gambell get federal police grants
FAIRBANKS (AP) The Fort Yukon Police Department has received a federal grant that could double its force.

Fort Richardson undergoing $19 million upgrade
ANCHORAGE (AP) Two large combat training courses under construction on Fort Richardson will provide soldiers with areas to train for urban combat.

Family acquitted of hunting violations
ANCHORAGE (AP) A state judge has issued a reprimand of state troopers' handling of a case in which members of a Russian Old Believer family were tried and acquitted of illegally shooting a bull moose.

Trawler workers arrested after Unalaska altercation
UNALASKA (AP) Five trawler processing workers are accused of ganging up on another crewmember on a dock in Unalaska.

Audit faults Mat-Su for school vending machines
ANCHORAGE (AP) High school students in the Matanuska-Susitna Borough will have to make it through lunchtime next year without access to vending machines for pop, candy and snacks.

Search continues for missing airplane
ANCHORAGE (AP) The search continued Friday for a plane with three people aboard missing between the Alaska Peninsula and Homer.

Coast Guard recommends license suspension in ferry accident
JUNEAU (AP) The U.S. Coast Guard is recommending a state ferry captain's license be suspended for a month because he gave a wrong command that steered the ferry Kennicott into a rock earlier this month.

Task force recommends $10 million upgrade to 911 system
ANCHORAGE (AP) A task force is recommending a $10 million overhaul of Anchorage's 911 system.

Man dies in Eagle River traffic rollover
ANCHORAGE (AP) An Eagle River man died after his pickup truck rolled over, Anchorage police said Monday.

Record numbers enroll in summer school
ANCHORAGE (AP) A record number of high school students in Anchorage are taking remedial summer school classes to prepare for the 2004 exit exam.

Army to start excavating former Delta dump site.
FAIRBANKS (AP) The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers plans to spend nearly $500,000 excavate a former military garbage dump site near Delta Junction.

Delta residents irked by Army training site plan
FAIRBANKS (AP) The Army went against the wishes of Delta Junction residents when it chose a site to build a new military training complex, officials have acknowledged.

Senate committee approves military spending
FAIRBANKS (AP) The Senate Appropriations Committee approved a military construction bill last week that would spend $325 million in Alaska during the coming federal fiscal year.

Man arrested in attempted sexual assault case
ANCHORAGE (AP) A 33-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the beating and attempted sexual assault of a woman on an Anchorage bike trail and police said they're trying to determine if he was involved in two other recent attacks.

Consumer product chairman plans ATV hearing
ANCHORAGE (AP) The chairman of a federal safety panel will ask Alaskans how to reduce the rising number of all terrain vehicle injuries and deaths.

State issues tularemia alert
FAIRBANKS (AP) State officials have issued a tularemia alert after a snowshoe hare found dead in Fairbanks was diagnosed with the disease, which can be fatal to humans.

Juneau holds Gold Rush Days celebration
JUNEAU (AP) Despite the chill in the air and morning drizzle, the crowd was gung-ho Saturday at the 14th Annual Gold Rush Days celebration.

Kodiak to keep its VPSOs for now
KODIAK (AP) Village public safety officers employed by the Kodiak Area Native Association will keep their jobs while alternative funding is sought.

Thousands enjoy Arctic Thunder air show
ANCHORAGE (AP) More than 75,000 people on Saturday showed up for the two-day Arctic Thunder air show at the Elmendorf Air Force Base.

Tongass Forest supervisor heads for Montana
KETCHIKAN (AP) Tom Puchlerz, the Tongass National Forest supervisor, has accepted a job with the U.S. Forest Service in Montana.

A record number of mushers signs up for Iditarod 2004
FAIRBANKS (AP) A record-number 76 mushers have signed up for the 2004 Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race as registration opened Saturday for the 1,100-mile race from Anchorage to Nome.

Settlement reached in crab fishing cases
JUNEAU (AP) The federal government announced Friday it has settled four cases against U.S. ships that were fishing for crab in Russian waters of the Bering Sea.

Funding restored to Denali Commission
FAIRBANKS (AP) The Denali Commission, which builds health clinics, water systems and other facilities in rural Alaska, received more than $100 million in federal funding for the current fiscal year.

Growing number of businesses going smoke-free
FAIRBANKS (AP) Local health advocates and a growing number of business owners are promoting a voluntary ban on smoking in most enclosed public places in Fairbanks, hoping to get it done one restaurant at a time.

Yankees sweep home-away doubleheader vs. Mets
NEW YORK Alfonso Soriano and Derek Jeter led off with consecutive homers and the New York Yankees held off the Mets 9-8 Saturday night to sweep the two-ballpark, day-night doubleheader.

Chugiak sweeps Twins
The American Legion Twins dropped both ends of a doubleheader Saturday to Chugiak in Anchorage.

Almonte stars in high school
NEW YORK Danny Almonte recalls a moment on the mound in his first preseason game for James Monroe High School that still brings a smile to his face.

A's win battle of Bay II
SAN FRANCISCO Eric Byrnes hit for the cycle, and Mark Mulder became the majors' fourth 11-game winner as the Oakland Athletics beat the San Francisco Giants 5-2 Sunday in the finale of the Bay Bridge Series.

Twins falll to Bartlett in a road double-dip
The American Legion Twins dropped two away games in a doubleheader against Bartlett Sunday in Anchorage.

Florida pitcher released from hospital
BOSTON (AP) Florida Marlins pitcher Kevin Olsen was released from the hospital and put on the 15-day disabled list with a concussion Saturday, one day after being hit in the head by a line drive.

Now Playing: Charlie's Angels: Full Throttle
I think it can be generally agreed upon that summer is a time to relax. Sit back, eat some junk food, and wile the days away watch

Educators invited to apply to wilderness leadership school
Every summer near the Grand Tetons outside of Jackson, Wyo., and also near Bryant Pond, Maine, hundreds of teachers and high school students enjoy an outstanding educational program.

Area M is 8,000-square-mile fishery on North Pacific Ocean, Bering Sea
I was interested to read about the Upper Cook Inlet salmon season in your June 25 issue ("Upper Cook Inlet commercial salmon fishery set to begin"). However, I would like to clarify one point.

Hospice of Homer says thanks
On behalf of Hospice of Homer, I want to thank the Kenai Peninsula United Way for the generous allocation hospice recently received from them.

Changing way rec center operates knee-jerk reaction by city officials
I have always applauded the city of Kenai for building the Kenai Recreation Center and giving the community a place to play and exercise.

Soldotna businesses should take more pride in how property looks
Soldotna could be a beautiful city! We do not understand what people are thinking. After all the money that has been spent on new sidewalks, it would seem that the businesses could at least mow their lawns. A little weed killer on the dandelions would be great too.

Haines school superintendent wrong about NEA-Alaska
Recently published Recently published comments by Haines School Superintendent Woody Wilson require a response ("NEA-Alaska sues Haines, Hoonah over layoffs, June 18).

Keller outruns Riggs at Milwaukee Mile
WEST ALLIS, Wis. Jason Keller won the GNC Live Well 250 under the yellow flag on Sunday for his first Busch series victory of the season.

Funds available to pave sports center parking lot
The Soldotna Sports Center will get new paving in its east parking lot. Soldotna City Manager Tom Boedeker announced at last week's city council meeting that the city had money available from a state matching grant for more than $100,000 to improve the facility to begin the project. The grant calls for just over 30 percent in matching funds from the city.

Painful effects could be on horizon for Alaskans
After years of budget debate, millions in legislative cuts since the late 1990s and, this year, $137 million more in budget vetoes by Gov. Frank Murkowski, even casual observers are aware Alaska is in the midst of a critical financial crisis.

Back at the wheel Fisher returns to the water after 10-year hiatus
The economic downturn couldn't keep him away.

Kenai plans ahead
It's good to have a plan. Kenai residents can rest easy knowing their city does. The city's updated comprehensive plan is in the final stages of development and likely will go before the city council next month for approval. Once that happens, the plan will go into effect to help steer the development of Kenai.

Recent rains not enough for dry conditions
Summer is here, and with it comes wildfire season.

Moose calves find new home after mom dies in collision
Move over Tarzan. Take a dive, Aquaman. Robert Redford's role in the movie "Horse Whisperer" will have to take a back seat.

Seward man killed in accident
A 24-year-old Seward man was killed Saturday in an industrial accident at Afognak Construction in Seward.

Legislatures struggle to square spending, taxes
ATLANTA Summer started early this year in Oregon, when cash-strapped schools there shut down weeks ahead of schedule. Prisoners in Kentucky got get-out-of-jail-free cards. The wait for subsidized child care in Alabama, already two to three years, grew even longer. And in Michigan, the governor wasn't just content with asking state employees to forego raises. She pushed to cut their pay.

Barbara D. Garner
Former Kenai resident Barbara D. Garner died Thursday, June 26, 2003, at Dardanelle Hospital in Dardanelle, Ark. She was 56.

Ingibjork (Inga) Jona Thordarson
Twenty-year Homer resident Ingibjork (Inga) Jona Thordarson died Sunday, June 22, 2003, of medical complications and sarcoidosis at her home in Homer. She was 40.

Leo A. Grasso Sr.
Kasilof resident Leo A. Grasso Sr. died Friday, June 27, 2003, at his home from Lou Gehrig's disease. He was 60.

Oilers end losing streak against Glacier Pilots
The Peninsula Oilers broke a nine-game regular season losing streak to the Anchorage Glacier Pilots on Sunday at Coral Seymoure Memorial Park, beating the visiting team 4-3 in a game that almost got away from the peninsula sluggers.

Goldpanners split twin bill with Oilers
The Peninsula Oilers got off the slide this weekend, getting their first Alaska Baseball League wins of the season. The Oilers tied their four-game home series against the Fairbanks Goldpanners Thursday through Saturday at Coral Seymour Memorial Park.

Alaska working to ensure that no child gets left behind under federal law
For a year our state has intensely negotiated with the federal government over how to implement the most sweeping federal school reform law in history the No Child Left Behind Act.

U.N. should lead charge on destroying weapons
The European Union is ready to write a joint resolution with the United States about the need to fight weapons of mass destruction and proliferation of nuclear weapons.

Difficult financial decisions remain in Alaska's future
When it comes to budget deficits, Alaska has lots of company.

So far, Bush having it his way
WASHINGTON President Bush has kept his credentials intact with his party's conservative base even as he maneuvers for wider support for his re-election bid. It's a balancing act his father failed to achieve, but that does not rule out the occasional dog fight.

Complex problems need new approach
Certain problems never seem to go away, but creative new efforts keep coming along to confront them.

Whining can work wonders
My body hurts. I'd love to be able to say it's from getting older, but the truth is, it's my husband's fault.

Community News
KVCC presents interpretive programs Oilers host food bank night Homer plans July 4 activities Soldotna library sponsors contest Kenai library plans July events

Area students named to dean's list
Six Kenai Peninsula students were named to the dean's list for the spring semester at the University of Idaho in Moscow, Idaho.

Family finds home at Seymour Park
Until Charlene Smith re-emerged into a room in the Oilers press box clutching the red, white and blue 2003 Peninsula Oilers souvenir program, the interview had been choppy at best.

Around the Peninsula
God and country rally todayBorough mayor to speak at Soldotna chamber Oilers to sponsor food bank nightTraffic results to be heard at NPCC meetingHomer public health sets new scheduleGrief support for mothers formingWetlands tour hosted by Kenai WatershedResidents invited to take part in July 4 celebrationChurch plans community freedom festival

Heather and Josh Dunn

Scruffy guard pooch for U.S. troops in Iraq defies long odds
FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. They met in northern Iraq under the most trying of circumstances. Army Sgt. 1st Class Russell Joyce and his unit needed a guard dog. A scruffy, rail-thin German shepherd needed a home.

Kickin' it
The Kenai Peninsula Soccer Club Raptors, a 15-and-under boys team, were named champions at the Ina Kristiansen Memorial Cup tournament, held June 6-9 in Anchorage.

Around the Peninsula
Kenai chamber meeting Wednesday Kenai Watershed to host wetlands tour Mount Marathon race volunteers needed Grace Brethren to sponsor concerts Skyview offering lifeguard, swim classes Nikiski churches to host community day Vendors, parade entries sought for Progress Days Discount cards sold to benefit cancer fund

Peninsula people
Recent Soldotna High School graduate Samantha Penner, right, accepts a $5,000 scholarship from Robert Bambace, general manager of Great Bear Ford.

Singles in American farm country discover finding a date can be difficult
BRIEFHED: PLAZA, N.D. Keith Hegney hadn't had much luck finding love over the past five years, so the 27-year-old slipped on a cowboy hat and went to try his luck bidding on a date.

Curry, Moeglein announce engagement
Vivian Curry and Steve Moeglein of Odenton, Md., announce their plans to marry Saturday June 5, 200,4 in Maryland.

Ask a Firefighter
Question: The Fourth of July is coming, but I heard fireworks are illegal in Kenai. Is that true?

My best friend
Lisa Groleske of Soldotna says her dog Dakota Rose insists on using the cat door as a window.

Birds need toy variety to keep from being bored
Birds, like people, need stimulation. Sitting day in and day out in the same environment without any change can be monotonous to our feathered friends. They need change, stimulation and a chance to exercise their bodies and minds.

Youth is served; McGahan, 17, triumphs in Main Event
Sprint car driver Cameron McGahan, 17, of Kenai showed his inexperience in the Main Event Friday at Twin Cities Raceway, but it wasn't until the victory lap.

Laila Ali and Christy Martin to fight Aug. 23
The two biggest names in women's boxing will meet in the ring Aug. 23 in Mississippi.

Deadline nears for Miami on ACC invitation
MIAMI (AP) After a seven-week courtship, one unresolved courtroom battle and last-ditch offers from the league that has them and the league that wants them, an answer is finally near to Miami's million-dollar question: Will the Hurricanes stay in the Big East or accept an invitation to join the Atlantic Coast Conference?

Armstrong goes into Tour de France facing history
PARIS Lance Armstrong is already one of the greats of the Tour de France, a member of a select group to have won cycling's premier race four times.

Stanford wins LPGA title at ShopRite
GALLOWAY TOWNSHIP, N.J. Annika Sorenstam drew the crowds, Michelle Wie got the publicity but Angela Stanford took her first LPGA victory.

Canadian who helped subdue shoe bomber has visa ordeal
Kwame James is big. Basketball big. Big enough to turn heads when he walks down the street. He is a member of a community of players operating outside the scope of the NBA, traveling the world in search of games.

Lietzke's 64 puts him on top at Senior Open
TOLEDO, Ohio Bruce Lietzke has spent a lifetime traveling to golf courses, cashing checks and winning tournaments.

Sports Briefs
Red Sox call up Kapler; Giambi on DLMets send Shinjo to minors, recall GonzalezWomack put on DL, Hillenbrand activatedMorel retains WBA titlePirates release Kevin Young for second time

USOC reformation sees difficult path ahead
DENVER Most groups under the umbrella of the U.S. Olympic Committee agree that drastically cutting its unwieldy board of directors is the best way to fix the troubled organization.

LeBron wants action
CLEVELAND As he shot jumpers, LeBron James wore a dazzling $500,000 watch on his wrist, diamonds in his ears, a cell phone on his belt and a big smile.

Four peninsula mushers enter Iditarod early
Four Kenai Peninsula mushers signed up to run the 2004 Iditarod on the first day that the Iditarod Trail Committee accepts entries.

Oceania loses berth
PARIS (AP) South America won a chance to gain a fifth berth at the 2006 World Cup at the expense of Oceania, which again may not send any team at all.

Dixon dominates IRL contest at Richmond
RICHMOND, Va. (AP) Scott Dixon thought Richmond International Raceway looked like a go-kart track when he got his first look at it.

Agassi unveils new trick at Wimbledon
WIMBLEDON, England It was enough to draw double-takes.

Photo feature: Moose paddlin'
A moose and its yearling calf swim across Headquarters Lake behind the Wildlife Refuge Center in Soldotna on Friday afternoon.

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