Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Blue Flame set to ‘quiet down’ the Peninsula
Whether you want your automobile to be as quiet as an autumn breeze, or to have the throaty rumble of a race car, have a semi-tractor, back hoe, or dump truck that needs a rebuilt exhaust system, Blue Flame Mufflers can customize your needs to perfection. Roger Johnson of R&R Auto off K-Beach Road is now the only Blue Flame Muffler franchise on the Peninsula, “Blue Flame Mufflers deals with the entire exhaust system, we do everything from the exhaust manifold all the way back to the tail end of your vehicle including the chrome tips or whatever you’d like customized. Blue Flame has provided us with a data base of specifications on every vehicle that has been made since 1945 to the present,” Johnson told the Dispatch.

Organic options growing
Organic produce first started being heard about in the sixties when the baby boom generation began seeking alternatives to pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Nearly a half a century later, Carrs Safeway stores are celebrating national Organic Harvest Month with more than 250 organically produced items throughout their stores. According to Mick Galic, Soldotna store manager, organics have been slow to catch on here in Alaska but that seems to be changing, “More and more products are becoming available and we’re fine tuning how we are receiving the products so that it’s coming to us in a much better state and I think today people overall are more health conscience and concerned with what’s good for them,” said Galic.

In like a Lion and out like a...rubber duck
The tide was ebbing Saturday as nearly 1,000 yellow and creatively decorated rubber duckies took to the currents of the mighty Kenai River to prove which generous community ducky owner would end up with bragging rights of the fastest toy in the west and $7,000 in cold cash. The race was sponsored by the Lions Clubs of the Central Peninsula who collectively resurrected the event after a two year hiatus and ended up raising approximately $15,000 according to Soldotna Lion Ed Sleater. “You should have been there, it was a great day for a rubber duck race at Cunningham Park and even the seals in the river seemed to enjoy the competition and swam right along with the ducks,” said Sleater. In the Business Duck run-off the fastest bird proved to be the entry of Morgan Steel of Kenai, “Seemed a little strange to have a ‘Steel Duck’ win a rubber ducky race but that’s what happened before our very eyes, Morgan Steel’s old number ‘955’ bested 25 other competitors and a bunch of seals to win the trophy, however the award for the best decorated ducky went to First American Title,” added Sleater.

Phase III nears completion at CPH
The Central Peninsula Hospital (CPH) 11 million dollar Phase III expansion is almost complete and according to CPH president and chief executive officer Ryan Smith more new areas should be open and on line by November. “Phase III will open up the front of the hospital to a new lobby area that will feature a gift shop, barista, and the cafeteria will move from downstairs to the front of the hospital making it a community gathering place and then finally the emergency room is going to be renovated so we’ll be relocating the ER to the old medical surgery area, which will cause some disruption in service for awhile but then we will be opening up a brand new ER by the end of next April,” Smith told the Soldotna Chamber of Commerce last week. CPH hosted the regular Tuesday Soldotna Chamber meeting and luncheon at the hospital to give chamber members a preview of the new expansion as well update the community on the overall progress at CPH since the $49,000,000 bond project was approved by voters in 2003.

Imagine hauling your boat to your favorite lake and going fishing and after fishing you simply pull your boat to shore and tie it to a tree. You leave your tackle boxes in the boat as well as your fishing poles and other gear. You simply take your cooler of fish and go home. A few days later you return, jump in your boat and go fishing again. No one stole any of your gear or vandalized your boat. In fact it is just the way you left it.

Voters should determine limits
I feel like it may be a case of taxation without representation.

Proposition will force our seniors out of state
To the people of the Kenai Peninsula Borough: I am a 41-year-old home owner and longtime Alaska resident. I would like people to realize that our senior citizens are under attack again. The tax exemption proposition is unfair. Our senior citizens have worked so hard for what they have (their homes and property). I believe they have earned the right to have the hundred percent tax exemption on their primary residence.

Overlooked taxes need to change
Years ago, to encourage settlements in certain areas, the U.S. government "subdivided" government land to create hundreds of small parcels (and?) affordable lots and sold them to the public. Although the government's intent was to increase the population, many buyers took advantage of the deal and bought numerous adjacent lots to increase privacy or for later resale.

Reader: Vote 'No' on term limits
Please vote "No" on the term limits initiative. If passed, the initiative would kick out of office in the borough assembly even people that we, the electorate, had just voted in. It would remove some of the best assembly people, those with accumulated knowledge of borough affairs.

Propositions need to be passed
Oct. 2 we have the opportunity to establish a necessary fresh start in the KPB on three items.

Reader: Support library bond
The library is bogged down in books and patrons. It is the most frequently used city service. Why? Access to information is a fundamental part of citizenship, freedom and education. Support the bond issue, which will pay only a part of an addition. It is part of the quality of life we all share in this wonderful city of Kenai.

Reader looking for honesty
Let's face it folks, we got a friggen mess no matter where you turn. If we impeach the president and vice president, we get Pelosi, then we got Stevens.

Voter all for Prop 2, not Prop 1
On Oct. 2, city of Kenai voters will be presented with two propositions; both are general obligation bonds, both are for capital improvements, and both are for $2 million, but this is where the similarity ends. While one benefits everyone, the other will only benefit a few select property owners.

Agrium announces closure of Kenai nitrogen facility
Agrium Inc. announced today it is closing its Kenai nitrogen fertilizer operations due to a shortage of natural gas supply in Alaska's Cook Inlet. Agrium has diligently attempted to encourage development of natural gas supply and to negotiate contracts for 2008 and beyond. Despite these efforts, and after offering what it believed to be competitive prices and incentives, Agrium was unable to secure gas supply.

Agrium to close
Agrium's Kenai nitrogen fertilizer plant will close permanently by the end of the month, the Canadian-based company announced Tuesday.

Homeless shelter on hold
Once touted as becoming a national model for self-sufficient homeless shelters, the Family Hope Center being planned for Soldotna has now been put on hold.

Room to grow
Before Soldotna proceeds with its application to annex land along Kalifornsky Beach Road, city administration wants to know just how much to annex.

First responders get national day of recognition
A raging inferno doesn't deter them, neither does blood. In earthquakes, they're the first on scene seconds after the shaking stops. When the winds subside, they're digging through ruined houses to reach tornado victims.

Candidates spar over term limits
Other than some saber rattling between two Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly candidates over term limits, a Soldotna Chamber of Commerce candidate forum Tuesday proceeded with calm decorum just one week before the municipal election.

Williams: Closure a reason to look at bullet line
Forty years ago, when fertilizer production facilities and other plants were being built at Nikiski, everyone thought they had a finite life, Borough Mayor John Williams said Tuesday.

Feds charge Kenai dentist
A Kenai dentist has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Anchorage on tax evasion charges.

Connie Jean Mularski
Nikiski resident Connie Jean Mularski died Thursday, Sept. 20, 2007, at her home in Nikiski. She was 36.

Shirley J. Larsen
Kenai resident Shirley J. Larsen died Friday, Sept. 21, 2007, at Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna. She was 72.

Margaret Moonin
Lifelong Alaskan and Port Graham resident Margaret Moonin died Sunday, Sept. 16, 2007, at the South Peninsula Hospital in Homer. She was 77.

TeddyRay Clifford Kinion
Nikiski resident TeddyRay Clifford Kinion died Thursday, Sept. 20, 2007, in a house fire in Nikiski. He was 30.

Shirley J. Larsen
Kenai resident Shirley J. Larsen died Friday, Sept. 21, 2007, at Central Peninsula Hospital in Soldotna. She was 72.

Borough School Board
It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as a member of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Board of Education since 1998.

Borough School Board
When the Clarion asked me to tell readers about my candidacy and my plans for working for the people of my district, I found myself going back to my statement in 2004. It still says for me all that I would like you to know and I present it again. Nothing has changed: I am still advocating for more regular instructional teachers in the classrooms and still concerned in what direction we are going in regard to our vocational education programs.

City of Kenai Mayor
When running for City Council, I stated that it was my intent was to give back to my community. As a member of the Council, I have expanded my knowledge to better serve this end.

City of Kenai Mayor
I love Kenai and it has been a pleasure to serve as your mayor the past three years! During this time we have seen our community begin to transform into a thriving town again. Some of the greatest concerns of our citizens have been to generate more commercial development, rejuvenate the commercial district and neighborhoods.

Borough School Board
Children should be Alaska's top priority! As a School Board member, I think anyone who has worked with me knows this is where my heart is.

Butternut-apple soup
1 small onion, chopped

Around the Peninsula
Agrium live fire training continues LeeShore board meeting set SoHi offers lifeguard training Hockey registration, sports swap planned Hockey referees sought Pingpong returns Community resource directory available

Cream of pumpkin soup
1/2 stick butter

Around the Peninsula
Community group to meet KWF Volunteers to get party Donations for veterans sought Archery club Soccer coaches sought Life guard class available Student housing to be discussed

Colorful pumpkin bowls for soup
Choose small pumpkins, about 4 inches in diameter. Wash pumpkins and cut off tops, about 2 inches down. Scoop out insides.

Oh, how it's changed
ATHENS, Ga. Once upon a time, hospital patients had to stomach dinners of lukewarm chicken-a-la king with a scoop of canned mixed fruit on the side.

Healthy Bites
When your kids run in the door after a day at school, a snack usually is the first thing on their minds.

Roasted pumpkin (or squash) seeds
1 cup pumpkin seeds

The esssence of autumn
The season for the sometimes bizarre but still beautiful winter squash has arrived.

Class size pull candidates into race
Editor's note: Each of the candidates was asked to submit an opinion piece and to fill out a questionnaire provided by the Clarion. School board candidates' opinion pieces may be found on page A-4 and their questionnaire responses on A-5 in today's Clarion.

Dyson: Tax relief, resource use, education on agenda
Name: Eugene L. "Gene" Dyson

Crawford: Borough sales tax should be kept at 2 percent
Name: Lorraine "Sammy" Crawford

Boyle: Room for development, but keep city's future in mind
Name: Mike Boyle

2 vie for Kenai mayor
After one term at the helm, Kenai Mayor Pat Porter is facing a single challenger next week as she seeks reelection to the city's top office.

Porter: More development needs to be encouraged in Kenai
Name: Pat Porter

Prop 2 key issue in assembly races
Editor's note: Each of the candidates was asked to submit an opinion piece and to fill out a questionnaire provided by the Clarion. Borough assembly candidates' opinion pieces may be found and their questionnaire responses may be found in Monday's Clarion.

Kenai: bonds up for vote
Besides voting for a mayor and two city council members, Kenai residents will also be asked to decide whether the city should issue two $2 million bonds to expand the city library and stop bluff erosion along the Kenai River.

Hilts: Education, economy should be borough priorities
Name: Edith-Helen "Sunni" Hilts

Students exercise right to profess their faith
TOPEKA, Kan. As long as he enters with the student body, God is welcome inside public schools. Students can carry their holy books, like the Bible or Quran, pray and share their faith with classmates, and it's all legal.

Around the District
Aurora Borealis Charter Connections home-school IDEA home-school Kalifornsky Beach Elementary Kaleidoscope School of Arts and Science Kenai Central High Kenaitze Head Start Mountain View Elementary Ninilchik School Nikiski Middle-High Nikiski North Star Redoubt Elementary Sears Elementary Skyview High School Soldotna High Soldotna Elementary Soldotna Middle Sterling Elementary Tustumena Elementary

Professor Clark retires for new adventures in Washington: Kenai Peninsula College
Long-time professor retires Fall semester enrollments KPC works on service to rural students Paramedic program update

Kenai Golf Report
Hello, Golfers. Can you believe that September is all but over and October is just next week? Before we know it, Halloween will be here and then Thanksgiving is right behind and oh my gosh, that means Christmas ...

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