Saturday, August 25, 2007

Sobering statistics
Regardless of where you stand on the issue of the U.S. involvement in Iraq, here's a sobering statistic: There has been a monthly average of 160,000 troops in the Iraq theatre of operations during the last 22 months, and a total of 2,112 deaths. That gives a firearm death rate of 60 per 100,000 soldiers. The firearm death rate in Washington, D.C., is 80.6 per 100,000 persons for the same period.

Donation makes a difference to students
Soldotna High School would like to send out a special thank you to Wells Fargo Bank for its sponsorship of our after-school acceleration tutoring program, (A-Team), for the 2007-08 school year.

Practical joke not so funny
I'm writing this letter with a little anger and a lot of gratitude.

Reader questions limits
Term limits unconstitutional?

E-mail not Christian-like
Recently I was sent an e-mail by a Christian concerning a new store, Pye Wackets, that opened up on the peninsula. The e-mail reads that Pye Wackets is a witchcraft store and that we should pray to have it shut down. As Christians, we are taught that witchcraft is evil and a sin.

Ridgewood, Diane Lane road upgrades OK'd
A number of residents from Soldotna's Ridgewood Drive and Diane Lane neighborhood urged the city to go forward with a plan to beef up their streets despite construction bids that pushed the project $170,000 over the top.

KRSMA board seeking four new members
The Kenai River is undeniably the life blood of the Kenai Peninsula, and as such many have an opinion about how to ensure this heavily-used waterway doesn't become too popular for its own good.

SPH chief stepping down
In a move that surprised some and not others, South Peninsula Hospital Inc.'s Chief of Staff Charlie Franz announced his plans to leave the

Photo feature: Barrels of fun
Samantha Jones displays the U.S. flag Thursday night during opening ceremonies for the National Barrel Horse Association AK 01 District Finals in Soldotna.

Teachers get practical lesson in firefighting
Kelly Bishop and Pepper Pond finished their safety training at Kenai Alternative High School last week, but were in for an extra course on fire extinguisher handling when a plastic container on the kitchen stove burst into flames.

Cemetery site search resumes
No fewer than 12 people have stepped up for appointment to Soldotna's revived Cemetery Task Force.

Nikiski Pool repair project set
A long-awaited upgrade project at the Nikiski Pool will get under way in September, Borough Mayor John Williams said Tuesday as he announced the award of a pool repair contract.

Students return, but we all can learn from tips
It's a new year in the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District.

Common Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare)
This pretty perennial is often grown in gardens as it is late blooming and tall (up to 5 feet in height). However, it has escaped cultivation in many areas here on the peninsula and is spreading by seed and short rhizomes, forming dense clumps where little else will now grow.

With fireweed comes reflection
The telltale sign of fireweed now blooming closer to the tip of the plant reminds me that summer is rapidly approaching its end. When fireweed has gone to seed they say that snow is six weeks away. Just this past weekend I felt the air changing and I noticed the mountain peaks are starting to change color. Fall is just around the corner.

Patience pays off for silvers
Waking up to the morning paper and a steaming mug of coffee is a ritual for many, but Harold Wellnitz of Kenai has a different ritual at this time of year. He slips into a slicker suit and with rod and reel in hand, Wellnitz heads to Cunningham Park in Kenai to wet a hook in the tidal waters of the Kenai River for a few hours before the first light of dawn.

Running programs regain footing
Heading into the 2005 cross country season, many peninsula programs saw coaching turnover at the top of their programs. Three years later, solid numbers at many programs show that new coaches are starting to establish programs.

Stars clicking on both sides of the ball
Prior to last week's game at Palmer, Soldotna coach Galen Brantley Jr. was concerned with his defense after allowing 42 points to large-school opponent North Pole in Week 1.

Needed: Leaders who know where they're going
During my high school years, a fellow student gained national attention by cutting his two cars in half and joining the front sections back to back. There was no rear seat in this modified Model A Ford; only two front seats and two steering wheels facing opposite directions. Memory allows me to see again the faces of confused and amused onlookers when the celebrated car surgeon sat at one steering wheel with his brother positioned at the other while driving through town in a parade. No one could tell whether they were coming or going.

Church Briefs
  Sheila and Robert DeVolld Ministry milestone to be celebrated

Area barrel horse racers end year with district finals
Ever since the snow melted in May, Walt Williamson couldn't wait for Wednesday nights to arrive.

Here's to a dry weekend
Rain, rain go away. Come again another day! According to the weather man, it is supposed to be nice for the weekend. Keep your fingers crossed! Hello again from Bird Homestead Golf Course, located 11.8 miles out Funny River Road.

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