Wednesday, October 10, 2007

Put up your docks instead of your dukes
As Alaskans prepare for another winter, memories of last year’s ice floods and the damage to private and public property remain fresh. According to Janet Yaeger, education coordinator for the Kenai Watershed Forum at the Kenai River Center, it could happen again. “Just because last year was an unusual event, it doesn’t mean that it can’t happen again. Last year’s event was caused by the Skilak Glacier Dam Lake that released, but we also have the Snow River Glacier Dam Lake that is presently pretty full and the word we are hearing is that it could release this fall, so we need to be prepared for it,” said Yaeger.

I have never been a big fan of watching TV or even going to watch a movie whether at home or at the theater. I have probably watched less than 5 whole movies in my life but about 20 minutes of about 500 others. I have always felt like there was a whole lot more interesting things in life for me to do then to sit some place and watch TV or a movie of any kind. In fact I would rather pull weeds in my garden then have to watch TV unless the Green Bay Packers or Wisconsin Badgers are playing football. I chalk that up to being part of my Wisconsin heritage. Other then that I really wouldn’t care if I even had a TV. In fact at my home in the summer unless it is really nasty weather I don’t even allow the TV to be on.

Lucky draw lands locals with Martha Stewart
For over 20 years Jesse and Helen Tubbs of J&H Vacuum in Soldotna have been the local and Anchorage exclusive distributor for Pfaff sewing machines. Their loyalty paid off this year when Helen was the lucky winner of a trip to New York City and an appearance on the Martha Stewart Show where the new top of the line Pfaff sewing machine was to be unveiled. “I was at the Pfaff 2007 convention in Dallas, Texas and they held a drawing for two of their dealers to go to see Martha Stewart Live in New York City. The drawing was held at the end of the gala and I was totally shocked when they called my name,” Helen told the Dispatch. Helen’s husband and partner Jesse was invited to accompany her and actually postponed a trophy moose hunt to make the trip. “It was worth it though. We were seated in the VIP area and were suppose to appear as Pfaff representatives from Alaska, but two of the prior segments ran over and being a live show that cut into our segment so folks watching probably didn’t get to see us, but we did get to meet Martha and have photos taken with her, she was very pleasant and a real nice person,” said Jesse.

Elegant supper club opens at the McLennan House in Kenai
Truly unique to the Kenai Peninsula is the new McLennan House Supper Club, “It’s something I’ve been dreaming about for years and now we’ll open starting Friday October 19th in my beautiful new kitchen at the McLennan House,” said Lori McLennan. Formerly Lori Chase of the Chase is Over catering and The Family Table, Lori’s culinary talents have become well known on the Kenai Peninsula. “Our idea was to create a fine dining experience slightly reminiscent of a Benihana table where people can watch me create their meal and I can watch them as they enjoy their dinner,” explained McLennan.

Local Youth gets liver transplant and a new lease on life
Jacob Eckerman was a normal, active, soccer playing 12-year-old boy a year ago. Today Jake, now 13, is working his way back to that normal life after a very traumatic six months of medical procedures that culminated with a liver transplant. “He went from being a normal funny little dude that loved to play soccer, to being very sick in a real short period of time, and it scared the you-know-what out of us, because he became so sick so fast. We took him in thinking he might have an appendix problem like his brother did, but soon learned that he was in liver failure and our insurance quickly maxed out,” explained Jacob’s father Keith.

Reader urges voters to check out candidates' stance on guns
I urge everyone who intends to vote in the 2008 presidential election to investigate each candidates position on the issues, especially on gun control. Yes, the U.S. has experienced many tragic crimes that involve guns, but to remove guns from law-abiding citizens is not the answer. We need to enforce the laws that are already on the books and to make sure the criminals are punished accordingly.

Ramras needs to rethink stance
In response to the article in the Peninsula Clarion last month titled "Lawmaker alleges bribery" I would like to respond.

Tree lover applauded
Kudos to Kellie Kelso ("Kenai woman to defend trees at council meeting, Clarion, Oct. 2) for caring about saving our trees. I am appalled that developers so often seem to have little or no regard for saving our trees. Equally appalling is that the city council seems to disregard this issue also. Some loss of trees is no doubt necessary when development occurs, but the city council should negotiate with developers to save trees whenever possible.

Eldridge retains edge in Kenai
Kenai City Councilman Joe Moore gained ground toward reelection Tuesday following a count of absentee and questioned ballots, but not enough.

Library strikes novel idea
While the Kenai Community Library encourages people of all ages to read, it is currently seeking younger readers to take part in an upcoming graphic novel workshop.

On the waterfront: Center produces guide
Whether you own waterfront property overlooking Cook Inlet, the Kenai or Kasilof rivers, or any of the other numerous rivers and lakes on the Kenai Peninsula, there is a new book available that may be worth obtaining.

Voices lifted in song
Students participating in Tuesday night's Kenai Peninsula Borough School District's Borough Honor Choir concert are reflected on a piano as they rehearse a piece of music before the performance. Dr. Andre Thomas, of Florida State University, conducted the concert and worked with the students, who came from across the district, for two full days.

Mine risks forum slated
The potential for detrimental impacts to the environment posed by development of major mines near Iliamna and Chuitna will be the central topic of two public forums sponsored by the Homer group Cook Inlet Alliance.

SAD rules up for debate
In an attempt to bring the city code up to date as it relates to special assessment districts, the city of Soldotna this evening will be recommending tossing out the existing chapter and replacing it with clearer and less cumbersome rules for those seeking local public improvements.

CIRCAC opposes permit
In a letter sharply criticizing the Environmental Protection Agency, the head of the Cook Inlet Regional Citizens Advisory Council has expressed disappointment in a proposed inlet oil facility discharge permit, saying it failed to address numerous public concerns and would allow increased dumping of pollutants.

Kenai firefighters honored
When Kenai firefighters first arrived on the scene of a horrible crash a year ago, they didn't find the driver or anyone in the front seat of one of the cars.

Singing in the holiday season
Some of the best songs ever composed are Christmas carols; at least that's what Linda Duce thinks.

Council seat up for grabs
After counting absentee and questioned ballots, the Soldotna Canvass Board tally shows a run-off election will be needed to determine a winner in the much contested race for city council seat D, formerly held by Jane Stein.

Efforts benefit all river users: Good work can't be overshadowed by political gamesmanship
It's a sad day when good work by professional organizations and volunteers is manipulated into front-page and editorial page scandal. The reality is a lot of good was accomplished with the $3 million Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund (PCSRF) money spent on the Kenai and Russian rivers.

Champagne tastes
ATLANTA - If you knew nothing about baseball, you might well have wondered what on earth was happening inside the visiting clubhouse at Yankee Stadium Monday night. With TV cameras capturing every moment, the Cleveland Indians were dousing themselves in champagne, dancing and hollering as they sprayed the stuff around the room.

Best Pecan Tarts
The crust

Southern Pecan Pie
Recipe and photo courtesy Jason Kennedy,

Around the Peninsula
Depression screening available Public health plans one-day closure MOPS to meet Library seeks volunteers Halloween carnival set for fun

Nuts about pecans: This year's crop expected to be perhaps the 'best in 15 years'
I'm just crazy for pecans, so when pecan grower Jason Kennedy invited me to visit him at the family's pecan orchards in Lyons, Ga., I was delighted to accept.

Around the Peninsula
Honor choir to perform Gardeners to meet Nutrition classes set Troop homecoming meeting set 4-H'ers to gather Dessert bakers sought Special Olympics fundraiser set to dish Drug abuse council to meet Hospice training, events set PenDOG classes to start

Healthy Bites
Healthful eating includes plenty of fruits and vegetables. What about juice? Check the label.

Flaky and Tender Pie Crust
Makes two (nine-inch) pie shells

Fried Coke: The unreal thing
HUTCHINSON, Kan. Deep-fried Coke is it.

Pecan Pointers:
How to keep pecans fresh

Soldotna netters defeat Seward
Fresh off back-to-back conference wins over Kodiak and Skyview this past weekend, Soldotna was hoping to carry that momentum into Game 1 of its contest with visiting Seward on Tuesday night.

Kenai Peninsula College embraces distance education
Last May, nine members of arts and sciences division, six full-time and three part-time faculty, participated in a week-long distance education symposium sponsored by the Alaska Educational Innovations Network. According to Dr. Barbara Christian the intensive workshop served to further faculty knowledge and skill with online delivery systems. Two Web-based delivery methods were featured; Blackboard, an asynchronous delivery method, and Elluminate Live, a synchronous, real-time delivery method.

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 Wings Christian Academy

W hen I was in middle school, there were two things that everyone seemed to be excited for when they turned 14 getting a learner's permit and a job. The permit and the job seemed to be huge symbols of growing up and that we weren't children anymore.

Little squirts
Cooper Landing Volunteer Fire fighters show students at Cooper Landing Elementary School how to properly handle fire-fighting equipment Sept. 21 as part of hands-on learning day. The day began with a fire drill at the school and the arrival of two fire trucks. Assistant Fire Chief Mike Smith, along with firefighters Ken Green, Keith Doroff and Steve Lipscomb, worked with school Principal Tommy Gossard to give students experience with fire safety and the equipment firefighters use to help protect the community. Students were able to wear turnouts (uniforms) due to a donation from a community member. They also were able to pump water and work alongside the firemen. The fire crew showed students the equipment on the trucks and let them climb on and pretend to drive the truck. Smith gave each child fire smart books, a fire hat and talked to them about what they should do in case of a fire and how to be safe at home and school. He also explained National Fire Safety Week and reminded students to check their home fire alarms, CO2 detectors, have a family evacuation plan, a outside meeting place in the event of a fire and to always be aware of potential fire hazards in their homes.

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