Saturday, September 3, 2005

Sunshine, bright fish beckon
With mild fall weather and plenty of sunshine forecast through the weekend, now might be the perfect opportunity for anglers to get in on what’s shaping up to be some great fall fishing in the area.

Photo feature: Fish on the fly
A red salmon attempts to clear the Russian River falls earlier this week. Large schools of fish were pooled below the falls, which are one of the last hurdles the creatures need to clear before they can mate and die. The falls are a gentle hike about 4 miles round trip from a trail head near the Russian River campground.

Flag etiquette questionable
I had been Outside for three weeks. Upon my return to the central Kenai Peninsula, I observed that many of the U.S. flags and Alaska state flags are flying at half mast or the U.S. flag is flying at full staff while the Alaska flag is at half mast on the same pole. I even noted that the McDonald’s flag is at half mast (no doubt in recognition of my three-week absence).

Governor not only one deserving of jet blame
Have you wondered how it is that Governor Murkowski’s poised to get his jet, even though most Alaskans don’t think he needs one? Thank your closest Republican legislator. This session, the Republicans (many of whom openly questioned the Governor’s justifications for purchasing a jet that can’t land in most Alaskan communities) created a mechanism by which the Governor could use proceeds from the sale of the current Department of Public Safety jet to finance the purchase of a new one.

Pizza power brings crowd to life
The Soldotna High School cheerleaders would like to thank Pizza Boys and Chef’s Express for donating pizzas for the football games the past two Fridays. The crowd loves trying to win the pizzas for cheering the loudest, and the players love to hear the crowd cheering them on. Thanks so much for your support.

Former Soldotna priest OK after South hurricane
A catholic priest who served in Soldotna for nearly a year until returning to his home parish in Mobile, Ala., this past Memorial Day was relatively unscathed by Hurricane Katrina, which ravaged that part of the country this week.

Working it out: Firefighters get fitness gear
The Kenai Fire Department has been awarded a Department of Homeland Security $61,513 grant according to an announcement by Alaska’s congressional delegation.

Assembly to hit roads decision
With a long list of projects aimed at improving the borough road system, the road service area has asked the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly to approve allocation of an additional $384,500 to its fiscal year 2006 budget.

New school district job covers 10 sites
If it’s Monday, it must be Nikolaevsk. The rest of the week, Rich Redmond could be at any of 10 schools spread across the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District.

William “Billy” Sacaloff
Longtime Kenai resident William “Billy” Sacaloff died Wednesday, Aug. 31, 2005, at his home in North Kenai. He was 53.

United States needs to be leader in science
Since the dawn of the technological age, the United States has been on the cutting edge.

BRAC makes good call keeping Eielson
The Pentagon recommendation that Eielson Air Force Base near Fairbanks be put in some kind of an oddball ‘‘warm’’ status — in other words, virtually shut down — never made any sense to Air Force commanders who have spent time in Alaska and know first-hand of the value of that installation in the big national defense scheme of things.

Hurricane Katrina far more devastating than pundits, executives think
I’m known to write occasionally that the rest of America doesn’t understand the South. Now comes some clear and convincing evidence.

Chena hunters take aim
FAIRBANKS — The spitting rain and chilly breeze at Chena Pump Landing on Wednesday morning didn’t bother Mike Jenkins and Ken Butler as they loaded up their 17-foot Roughneck aluminum johnboat.

New refuge biotech finds a new niche in Alaska’s wilderness
As a newly hired biological technician (biotech) for Kenai National Wildlife Refuge and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service my main duties are to provide support to the refuge biological program. Specifically, I execute field studies designed to accurately and efficiently assess the biological resources of the refuge. In short, I am the eyes and ears of the biological program in the field, principally conducting vegetation and wildlife surveys.

Nevada town comes to grips with annual desert festival
GERLACH, Nev. — Everett Gates repairs a tire in an auto shop packed with plastic cat suits, thong underwear, goggles and boxes of condoms. It’s that time of year again.

Idaho seeks to ease wolf protections in Rockies
BOISE, Idaho — Idaho is floating a new proposal that it hopes could speed the removal of federal protection for gray wolves in the northern Rocky Mountains.

Around the Peninsula
MDA campaign set to kick offDrivers’ safety class scheduledKennel club agility trials slatedPotluck, work day setHistorical society to meetDinner, auction fund-raiser setEMS benefit dinner setDog training seminar setTenants wanted for senior apartments

Vatican, China work to improve relations
ROME (AP) — Pope Benedict XVI conferred last week with Andrea Riccardi, founder of the Community of Sant’Egidio, a lay organization that has worked behind the scenes to help the Vatican and China improve relations.

Church Briefs
Clothing availableBible study group to meetClothes Quarters openFall Bible classes slatedSoldotna Bible study plannedAddictions group available

U.S. Muslims seeking acceptance
PLAINFIELD, Ind. — As one of the nation’s largest U.S. Muslim groups prepares for its annual meeting in the Chicago area, its leader is working to contain forces both inside and outside the community that would steer it away from the American mainstream.

Evangelicals feel sense of persecution
To outsiders, conservative Christians seem at the peak of their influence.

Attitude of gratitude is secret of contentment
While researching and writing a book on crime and justice, I was surprised to learn that two-thirds of those in prison had full-time jobs at the time of their arrests.

New homes get foundation with concrete, Bible
MAGNOLIA, Texas — The framing and the walls were already up when Jill Williams and her husband discovered a home they liked in a suburban area north of Houston.

Agassi moves on at Open
NEW YORK — Size doesn’t matter in tennis. Neither does age.

Area champs crowned in barrel horse racing
Jennifer Murray and Shana Wilson led a list of eight champions crowned Wednesday night in the Barrels division at the National Barrel Horse Association District Finals at the Soldotna Rodeo Grounds.

Bulldogs top Sitka
The Nikiski Bulldogs improved to 3-0 in the Great Land Conference and 3-1 overall Thursday with a 24-0 victory in Sitka.

McNabb, Owens sit out as Jets clobber Philadelphia
PHILADELPHIA — Donovan McNabb watched from the press box and Terrell Owens looked on from the bench as the New York Jets’ backups dominated the Philadelphia Eagles’ junior varsity in a 37-14 victory Thursday night.

Combined tourney set for weekend
The Birch Ridge Golf Association and the Kenai Golf Association will hold their combined tournament on Saturday and Sunday.

Mariners rip Yankees
SEATTLE (AP) — Miguel Ojeda’s first home run with Seattle helped the Mariners to a 5-1 victory over New York on Thursday.

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