Thursday, September 27, 2007

Business Briefs
Chambers set schedules Wage, hour seminar slated Fisheries business assistance available

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.

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.

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.

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.

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 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.

Assembly accepts flood reimbursement
The Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly has accepted a sizeable state grant that reimburses the borough for expenses incurred in responding to severe flooding at Seward last fall.

Board looks at Skilak hunt
The public has until Friday to submit written testimony on a proposal that will give youth ages 16 and younger the chance to hunt for grouse and hare in the Skilak Loop Wildlife Management Area this November. The proposal, which was submitted by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game, will be considered at the Board of Game meeting in Anchorage on Oct. 4.

Moving on down the line
Fall colors frame Homer Electric Association lineman Cole Young as he works on a project to replace aging electric lines in Thompson Park subdivision in Kenai on Wednesday afternoon.

B&B annual convention opening today in Homer
Marketing experts and other tourism industry advisers, as well as business owners from around the state are descending on Homer this week for the 10th annual convention of the Bed and Breakfast Association of Alaska.

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

Kenai mayoral candidates graded
Kenai mayoral candidates were somewhat taken aback Wednesday when greeted at a Kenai Chamber of Commerce forum by a report card of sorts depicting their voting record this year on business issues brought before the city.

Run-off may be needed in Soldotna
With five candidates vying for one council seat in Soldotna, chances are likely a run-off election will be needed to determine who replaces Jane Stein for council seat D.

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.

Anchor Point's growth praised
Though it is doing so slowly, economic indicators show the community of Anchor Point is growing steadily and contributing to the overall economy of the Kenai Peninsula Borough, Borough Mayor John Williams said in Anchor Point on Wednesday.

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.

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

Soldotna City Council
As a young parent, in a small-town, working-class family, I bring new eyes and a fresh perspective to the City Council. I love Soldotna. I have made it my home and intend to stay.

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.

Soldotna City Council
I am now completing my three-year term as one of your representatives on the Soldotna City Council. I prefer to think of it as something akin to an apprenticeship. A learning experience if you please.

Soldotna City Council
I've been actively serving the community of Soldotna since 1983 and remain committed to defending the quality of life, health, safety and security of Soldotna resident families. My wife Erin and both of our daughters (Madeline and Sophia) were born at CPGH. Although we have been offered transfer opportunities from my employer of 23 years, ConocoPhillips, Soldotna is our home of choice. I will fight for a promising future for our children and grandchildren.

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.

Soldotna City Council
I have lived on the peninsula for close to 30 years. I am married to Bruce, a general contractor. We have two children: Kaitlin, a senior at Gonzaga University; and Brett, a sophomore at Soldotna High School.

Butternut-apple soup
1 small onion, chopped

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.

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

Around the Peninsula
Cameras, photo printers sought Kids reading program continues Donations sought for military personnel Social Security reps to visit peninsula Community resource directory available Swim lessons to make a splash Pingpong returns

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.

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

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

Murphy: Soldotna should advocate stricter controls on river
Name: Linda Murphy

Vadla: Imperative city council address development issues
Name: Penny Vadla

Micciche: Raising tax rate should be last choice for council
Name: Peter Micciche

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.

Sleater: City working toward cemetery; deadline not needed
Name: Ed Sleater

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.

Bower: Study needed before city decides to buy golf course
Name: Lydia Bower

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

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

Horan: Market trends, supply, demand will dictate land use
Name: Shane Horan

'Dragon Wars': So bad it's good
Chris Jenness

It's one thing after another
"Sudden Theater" will run Friday through Sunday and Oct. 5-7 at the Old Town Playhouse. Friday and Saturday performances will be at 7 p.m., and Sundays at 3 p.m. Tickets are $10 for seniors and students and $12 for general admission. Advance tickets are available for purchase at Charlotte's in Kenai and River City Books in Soldotna.

Dinner and a movie
Much like the Cannes Film Festival in France is used to demonstrate that European cinema is art, not just entertainment, so, too, will the local festival with a similar name demonstrate movie patrons care about more that just taking in a flick.

What's Happening
Best Bets Events and Exhibits Entertainment Films Upcoming Events Down the Road Anchorage events

Poet's Corner
Leaves fall

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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