Friday, August 6, 2010

August has silver salmon lining: Anglers report landing coho, pinks and some sockeye
Although king salmon fishing is closed for the Kenai and Kasilof Rivers, August began with a silver lining.

Homer education issues addressed in thoughtful manner
I would like to extend my appreciation for the leadership Senate President Gary Stevens and House Speaker Mike Chenault showed during the two day discussion on July 22 and 23 with the Advisory Task Force on Higher Education and Career Readiness. Collecting the data, listening to invested partners from the Alaska Departments of Education and Labor to the University of Alaska, private colleges and other educational organizations as well students was no small task. The members at the table kept the level of the discussion positive, solution based and student centered. The obstacles facing our children in their lifelong learning paths can be daunting, but Senator Gary Stevens and Speaker Chenault deserve credit for taking on the issues in a thoughtful, public manner.

Thanks for help with dipnet outing
TRAILS and the Independent Living Centers on the Kenai Peninsula would like to thank the following people for helping to make our dipnet outing at the Kasilof River on July 23 such a great success:

Labels can be tough to overcome
On July 25 The Clarion ran an in-depth and insightful article about educating students at the Kenai Peninsula Youth Facility. The subheading read "Teacher talks working with young criminals." A more accurate and less offensive description would have been to refer the students as Youthful Offenders.

River walk needs new set of rules
I enjoy the Soldotna river walk. It's wonderful. I do believe though, that the city should install a couple of rules.

Citizen's advisory council urges no vote on Proposition 1
I'm writing to add our voice to those opposing Proposition 1 on the primary ballot.

Fisherman grateful for Bristol Bay's bounty
I am one of Bristol Bay's thankful commercial fishermen who caught nearly 30 million valuable red salmon this year to provide food for many people throughout the world. The price for Bristol Bay reds increased in value this year, igniting jobs and over $170 million to Alaska's and America's economy. This year farmed salmon in Chile was infested with a parasite. Let's protect the world's last great wild healthy salmon source, and not risk it with a 40-year-Pebble-Mine that will bulldoze their clean water spawning habitat and replace it with toxic waste forever. Enjoy Bristol Bay's heart-helping 'superfood' as my ancestors have for thousands of years. Join the many Alaskans and Americans who enjoy and care about Bristol Bay!

Rules remain grounded: Flyway Council leaves migratory regulations unchanged
The Pacific Flyway Council on migratory birds opted not to take the Gulf Oil Spill into account during a decision making meeting late last month.

Former Sterling man's plane crashes in Denali
A former Sterling pilot was among those who died when a cargo aircraft crashed in Denali National Park last weekend.

When it rains...: Kenai Peninsula residents reflect on especially wet July
Fish heads and fishermen mulled along the Kenai beach last weekend. Beth Larusso, a first time dipnetter, sat in the sand with a glum look on her face. Larusso, of Anchorage, said that the rain had slowed her usual summer activities.

Assembly OKs hospital MRI
South Peninsula Hospital received the go-ahead to build its MRI building Tuesday night.

Duck and cover, waterfowl regulations set
The Alaska Department of Fish and Game established waterfowl hunting regulations for the 2010-11 season with changes to harvesting in Kachemak Bay.

Range you can believe in: Llama is presidential namesake at Kenai RV park
While he might be little more than what his owner calls a "glorified lawn ornament," one young llama at the Diamond M Ranch has quite a story -- and name -- behind him.

Photo Feature: Music on the menu

Edward Beckham East, Sr.
Kenai resident Edward Beckham East, Sr., 84, died Saturday, July 31, 2010, at Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna.

Lloyd Allen Doyle
Longtime Alaskan and Anchor Point resident Lloyd Allen Doyle, 70, died July 14, 2010. at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer.

"Wild Bill" Michel
"Wild Bill" Michel, 61, died Sunday, Aug. 1, 2010, in an airplane crash at Denali Park.

Patricia L. Togni
Ninilchik resident Patricia L. Togni, 67, died July 15, 2010, from a short courageous battle with cancer with her husband and pastor by her side at South Peninsula Hospital in Homer.

Don't diminish lieutenant governor's job
A heartbeat away . . .

Refuge Notebook: Earthworms seen as invasives on the Kenai
Until recently, I have given little thought to the small earthworms that are common around dwellings here on the Kenai. I viewed earthworms as beneficial because they aerate the soil, mix organic material into the soil profile, and process coarse organic debris into a form that can increase nutrient availability. All these things are good for garden productivity.

An Outdoor View: Proper care of fish
Most fish is mishandled to some degree, but a little tender, loving care will ensure high quality on your plate.

Canoe trails lesson in work versus reward
While paddling a borrowed Mad River canoe across Contact Lake, my shoulders still stinging from, again, portaging the boat as though it were a heavy tortoise shell, I chuckled.

Around the Peninsula

School open houses set

Prep football set to kick off
There are no warm-up games when it comes to Alaska high school football.

What's Happening

First Thursday

'Schmucks' leaves viewers' appetite unsated
Steve Carrell and Paul Rudd have worked together before. First, as part of Ron Bergundy's entourage in "Anchorman," and later in the hilarious and surprisingly sweet "40 Year-Old Virgin." Both of those projects must have looked a little odd on paper, though the end results were mostly right on the money. That, perhaps, explains why these two smart comedians took a chance on an American remake of a French farce, the erratic hit and miss mess that is "Dinner for Schmucks." I can't imagine that the script really read all that well, but Rudd and Carrell must have figured, "Well, it's always worked out ok before..."

Poet's Corner

My Beard Grows Lengthy 'Neath These Waves

Everyday beauty: Alaskan expatriate publishes poem book
As a writer, Mary Mullen likes to explore life and emotions through explosive, non-fiction narratives.

Ghost and Alaska politics collide in new novel
Start with an old ghost story, add a dose of politics, subtract almost all semblance of ethics and what do you get? The answer lies in the plot of "The Ghost of Fannie Guthry-Baehm, a Murder Mystery," by Jonathan Faulkner of Homer.

Church Briefs

Kids welcome to gather

Voices of Religion: Humor heals all wounds, physical and mental
I think right now if you stood in Fred Meyers and said, "We need more rain!" you could cause a riot. It is now August and summer has been less than what we hoped for, especially after last year.

Clarion Calls: Don't write off summer sports or Homer Mariners

Jeff's call: Full weekend of motor sports beckons

Oilers drop 1st game of NBC tourney
The Wichita (Kan.) Elite Sluggers lived up to their name, racking up 13 hits en rout to a 6-3, come-from-behind win over the Peninsula Oilers in first round play of the National Baseball Congress World Series on Wednesday at Lawrence Dumont Stadium in Wichita, Kan. The Oilers play the Rock City (N.C.) Red Sox today at 7:30 a.m. ADT. With a loss, Peninsula will be eliminated from the tournament.

Birch Ridge Golf Report: Today is the last day to sign up for Saturday's Phil Turkington Golf Classic
There's still time to register for the Phil Turkington Golf Classic hosted by the Soldotna Elks. The event will be Saturday with check in at 7 a.m. and an 8 a.m. shotgun start. At the end of play there will be a steak dinner at the Elks Lodge. Register by today by contacting either Birch Ridge Golf Course or call the Elks Lodge at 262-8270 or Gary Brumley at 398-2847. Money raised from this tournament goes to scholarships for local graduating high school seniors. Hope to see you out there sharing stories of Phil and supporting this next year's high school graduates.

Bird Homestead Golf Report: Bird plays vital role in festival
It was an exciting week at Bird Homestead Golf Course. The owners, Elmer and Pat Bird, were honored as the Grand Marshalls of the Funny River Community Chamber of Commerce Parade on Saturday. It was quite an event.

Oilers blank Rock City
Different team, same result.

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