Current weather

  • Scattered clouds
  • 54°
    Scattered clouds

Soldotna brings spirit of Alaska to celebration

Posted: Wednesday, July 24, 2002

Fifty-three years ago, the city of Soldotna, now a fishing and tourist hub for the Kenai Peninsula, was only small community of 21 people. From a wide spot in the road connecting Anchorage and Homer, it has grown to what some tour guides dub "the miniature Anchorage" with a population of around 4,000 people.

While Soldotna may lack the six-digit population of Anchorage, over the past five decades it has emerged as one of the peninsula's main venues for activity.

The famous Kenai River and its lifeblood -- the salmon -- have drawn many to Soldotna. Whether newcomers stay for a lifetime or only a few days or weeks, everybody's life has been touched by the recreational salmon fishing industry in one way or another.

However, there is more to Soldotna, and the peninsula as a whole, than the mighty salmon. The first residents of Soldotna came as homesteaders seeking a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of life Outside. Since the late 1940's, when the first pioneers settled around what is now Soldotna, a lot more than the popualtion has changed.

In many ways, the city is a representation of what it means to be an Alaskan.

Therefore, "Spirit of Alaska" has been chosen as the theme for this year's Soldotna Progress Days celebration. It was chosen

to emphasize the "Spirit of Alaska" exhibit at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center, thus promoting cooperation between Soldotna and its sister city

The theme also exemplifies Soldotna itself, which, through the pioneer spirit of many residents, maintains the true essence of Alaska.

Several favorite events will return for this year's celebration. In the salmon spirit, the Kenai Watershed Forum, in cooperation with the city of Soldotna, has expanded the annual Soldotna Creek Celebration to resemble the Kenai River Festival held annually in Kenai. The afternoon of July 28 will be full of free food, music and games.

During this celebration the People's Choice Awards from the Kenai Peninsula Racing Lions second car show will be announced. Cars from the Lions' drag races and the Peninsula Classic Auto Club will be on display so residents may vote on their favorite during the events scheduled for July 27.

Also July 27, the staple of the Progress Days celebration -- the parade -- will begin at 11 a.m. Following the parade will be the traditional vendors and activities site. In addition to these festivities, the Central Emergency Services will have a "Meet the Chief" open house at station one in Soldotna from noon to 2 p.m. CES will have its vehicles on display for anyone to check out first hand.

The Peninsula Clarion joins Soldotna residents, businesses and community leaders in inviting you to celebrate Progress Days. The Clarion publishes this special edition each year to promote the celebration and look at some of the people and events that make Soldotna a great place to live, visit and do business.

HEAD:Soldotna brings Spirit of Alaska to celebration

BYLINE1:By CARLY BOSSERT

BYLINE2:Peninsula Clarion

Fifty-three years ago, the city of Soldotna, now a fishing and tourist hub for the Kenai Peninsula, was only small community of 21 people. From a wide spot in the road connecting Anchorage and Homer, it has grown to what some tour guides dub "the miniature Anchorage" with a population of around 4,000 people.

While Soldotna may lack the six-digit population of Anchorage, over the past five decades it has emerged as one of the peninsula's main venues for activity.

The famous Kenai River and its lifeblood -- the salmon -- have drawn many to Soldotna. Whether newcomers stay for a lifetime or only a few days or weeks, everybody's life has been touched by the recreational salmon fishing industry in one way or another.

However, there is more to Soldotna, and the peninsula as a whole, than the mighty salmon. The first residents of Soldotna came as homesteaders seeking a reprieve from the hustle and bustle of life Outside. Since the late 1940's, when the first pioneers settled around what is now Soldotna, a lot more than the popualtion has changed.

In many ways, the city is a representation of what it means to be an Alaskan.

Therefore, "Spirit of Alaska" has been chosen as the theme for this year's Soldotna Progress Days celebration. It was chosen

to emphasize the "Spirit of Alaska" exhibit at the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center, thus promoting cooperation between Soldotna and its sister city

The theme also exemplifies Soldotna itself, which, through the pioneer spirit of many residents, maintains the true essence of Alaska.

Several favorite events will return for this year's celebration. In the salmon spirit, the Kenai Watershed Forum, in cooperation with the city of Soldotna, has expanded the annual Soldotna Creek Celebration to resemble the Kenai River Festival held annually in Kenai. The afternoon of July 28 will be full of free food, music and games.

During this celebration the People's Choice Awards from the Kenai Peninsula Racing Lions second car show will be announced. Cars from the Lions' drag races and the Peninsula Classic Auto Club will be on display so residents may vote on their favorite during the events scheduled for July 27.

Also July 27, the staple of the Progress Days celebration -- the parade -- will begin at 11 a.m. Following the parade will be the traditional vendors and activities site. In addition to these festivities, the Central Emergency Services will have a "Meet the Chief" open house at station one in Soldotna from noon to 2 p.m. CES will have its vehicles on display for anyone to check out first hand.

The Peninsula Clarion joins Soldotna residents, businesses and community leaders in inviting you to celebrate Progress Days. The Clarion publishes this special edition each year to promote the celebration and look at some of the people and events that make Soldotna a great place to live, visit and do business.



CONTACT US

  • 150 Trading Bay Rd, Kenai, AK 99611
  • Switchboard: 907-283-7551
  • Circulation and Delivery: 907-283-3584
  • Newsroom Fax: 907-283-3299
  • Business Fax: 907-283-3299
  • Accounts Receivable: 907-335-1257
  • View the Staff Directory
  • or Send feedback

ADVERTISING

SUBSCRIBER SERVICES

SOCIAL NETWORKING

MORRIS ALASKA NEWS