Katherine and Charlie Parker open 40 acre park in Soldotna recently

Posted: Thursday, October 11, 2001

Katherine Parker was thrilled to see children and adults of all ages rushing along the paved trail of the Katherine and Charlie Parker Park last Sunday after the official ribbon cutting ceremony.

"I do hope that there will be many more people having fun and more such activities there in the future," said Katherine in an interview following the official park opening. "It was one of the few land disposal issues that we promptly agreed on," added Katherine, "I'm glad it's centrally located. We've been delighted the way it has developed, the City has done a wonderful job developing the land into a lovely park."

The Parker's originally bought the 40 acres from Ira Little in 1960. Katherine's husband Charlie was a land surveyor and did the first subdivision in Soldotna in 1952 before moving to the Peninsula himself in April of 1961. For many years Katherine wrote for the Chechako News, a weekly paper that was published from 1959 until 1986 and printed on the oldest press in Alaska.

"I loved that old press, you could see the paper go in on one end and come out a printed newspaper on the other. It was something you could watch and understand. These modern things are a little beyond my comprehension," said the former journalist. Members of the Soldotna Historical Society are having the last 15 volumes of the paper bound in Palmer and in the next few months they will all be available for reading at the Soldotna Library.

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