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Wednesday, October 18, 2006

60th Wedding anniversary brings legislative citation in time for 62nd anniversary celebration
It was a happy day for the Hermansen family of 7, as they gathered at the Kenai Chamber of Commerce to see their parents Herman and Dorothy of Coho Loop receive a legislative citation in honor of their 60th wedding anniversary. The proclamation recognizing their 60 years of marriage as well as the couple’s extensive community service was presented by State Senator Tom Wagoner and came just in time for their 62nd anniversary, “The legislature may not move too quickly and I apologize for that but Herman and I go way back as original members of the Cook Inlet Aquaculture Association and he and Dorothy are truly deserving of this recognition,” stated Wagoner.

Kenai Watershed Forum thanks their volunteers
As the Kenai Watershed Forum comes up on their 10th anniversary this winter Executive Director Robert Ruffner is impressed by the growth his grass roots organization has achieved, “Things have grown like gangbusters since the beginning of the organization and this time of year is always fun for me because in order to prepare for our volunteer appreciation party I have to review the photos of the summer activities that my staff takes. This year it was a true joy to see all the activities that went on that I didn’t even know about, with seven staff members I just can’t keep up with what everyone is doing, so it was a real pleasure to review all the good stuff that not only the staff but all our volunteers have been doing,” Ruffner told those who gathered at the Kenai River Center for the annual appreciation picnic.

Outdoors
Think back and try to remember the very first time you went fishing in your life. I can't recall for sure where my first fishing trip took place but I do know it took place somewhere in Wisconsin. As a young boy there was not a whole lot of fishing as my mechanic father spent most of his time working. He would on occasion take a few days here and there to take us kids fishing. I think one thing that discouraged my father from taking his children fishing more was the fact that he never learned how to swim and being around water scared him. I can remember several early childhood fishing trips with my father and most were either at E. Wolf River or the Eau Claire River. I can remember one trip where I stepped in the water over my new shoes and got a wet foot while landing a big carp. I think my father was more excited then I was over catching the big carp, as he wouldn't accept my apology for getting my new shoes wet. He kept saying, "Don't worry about those shoes. Look at that huge fish you caught!" I can also remember catching small panfish from the Wolf River never Stanley Wisconsin and it was perhaps my first favorite fishing hole. I'm not sure just where I caught the spark that created my tremendous love for fishing but I do know that throughout the years I have spent thousands of hours relaxing some place with a fishing pole in my hands. Very few things in life relax me any more then fishing and it really does not matter just what kind of fishing it is. I have been fortunate to be able to fish throughout the Midwest and as far south as Texas. I have caught such exotic fish or should I say rare fish as paddlefish and also sturgeon. It really does not matter to me what kind of fish I catch or where I go to fish or whether it is ice fishing or in open water.

Sneak preview reception great success at Challenger Learning Center
In preparation for next month’s gala event to be hosted by U.S. Senator Ted Stevens and his wife Catherine at the Anchorage Hilton Ballroom for the benefit of the Challenger Learning Center, a “sneak preview” reception for the Kenai Peninsula Community was held last week. The event featured tours of the Center and an air star planetarium along with visits from community dignitaries. The man who first conceived the idea of bringing a Challenger Learning Center to Alaska, Pat Ladner, was on hand to discuss the future of the Center.

Alaska Great Skate now Rock, Rally & Roll
The Soldotna roller rink formerly known as the Alaska Great Skate has undergone a major make over and is now open as the Rock, Rally & Roll. Molly Blakeley is the new owner of the “Planet Soldotna” roller skating, X-Boxing, Play Station, and pool playing fun club. “We were having a birthday party for my daughter when it was still the Alaska Great Skate and I thought, gosh, if these kids are having so much fun in this vintage environment I bet with a make over they would have a total blast. So I told the owner, my mom Sally Hoskins, that I wanted to buy the roller rink and here we are just three-and-a-half weeks later in a totally remodeled, reorganized facility ready to go, we even have new plumbing fixtures,” said Molly. Blakeley says her idea for the make over was to go for a Planet Hollywood, Hard Rock Café type of décor, “We have hundreds of vintage vinyl records on the ceiling with CD’s dangling from them, rope lights, and brand new carpet. Everything is new, totally amazing and we invite everyone to stop by and check out how fantastic it all turned out.”

Brats, beer, community support made Oktoberfest grand
I would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who participated in the 7th Annual Oktoberfest at the Kenai Elks on September 16th. This fundraiser for KDLL Public Radio is always a good time and for a good cause.

Gift of waders keeps program swimming along
To Scott and all the folks at Soldotna Trustworthy Hardware:

Support made bonfire a roaring success
The KCHS student council would like to take this opportunity to thank the many parents, businesses and community members that helped to make this year’s homecoming activities a great success.

Concert involvement hit the right chord
We were so thrilled to have the support of the Kenai-Soldotna community when we presented our Evening of Classics concert (Oct. 6). It’s our annual fund-raiser for the Kenai Peninsula Orchestra. Not only did we have 50-plus local musicians performing, we had an enthusiastic audience of over 150 people who clapped, laughed, smiled, and encouraged us as we played or sang.

Little writer has big thanks for CES puppet show
On Tuesday, Oct. 10, CES came to Soldotna’s Creative Play and Preschool to do a puppet show on fire safety. This letter was “written” by Clara Moore, age 4, to thank Captain Bernie for his part in the event.

Letter writer was right on
Let me hear an amen to the letter written and submitted by Paul Morrison (“No such thing as cheap labor,” Oct. 9). Did anyone else happen to read it? Now someone needs to do something! Or is it too late?

‘Re-elect nobody’
The question posed in the Clarion (regarding term limits) has been around before. It reminds me of a great bumper sticker I saw one day, causing an epiphany right there in the parking lot, which read “re-elect nobody!” Talk about “term limits!” Of course I believe my representatives will vote themselves out of office by approving term limits. And Star Trek is a documentary and Ed McMahon is waiting at my house with a big fat check.

Bed races were no snooze
Many, many thanks to all those teams and supporters who took part in the recently contested 7th Annual Soldotna Lions Vera Howarth Memorial Bed Race. And our condolences to those who missed “The Last Great Laugh of the Summer.”

Food bank feasts on helpers’ efforts
The Kenai Peninsula Food Bank Board of Directors and staff are very grateful to Chevron (formerly Unocal) employees for their United Way Day of Caring projects at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank facility on Community College Drive in Soldotna. Employees painted the Soup Kitchen dining area and preparation area plus the office area and bathrooms! Everyone appreciates the updated look. The company provided some painting supplies too.

Helmets will be needed if river horsepower is increased
I live in Atlanta, GA and have been coming up to fish the Kenai for 10-plus years. This summer with all of the guide boats on the river I wasn’t sure if I was in Alaska fishing or on the Atlanta freeways at rush hour! Guide boats were everywhere including the hours and days they were “not allowed.” I think I speak for many when I say that the “Guides” are ruining the fishing experience that I have come to enjoy so much. The thought of letting them go from 35HP to 50HP is asinine. If that passes I will need to bring a crash helmet and hope for airbag technology on boats.

Helpers made strides in improving kids’ safety
Many students, families, staff and community members participated in Walk Your Child to School Day at Redoubt Elementary on October 4. Thank you to Mrs. Hale, CES, SPD, Mayor Carey, Safe Kids of the Peninsula, and Mr. Dotomain for their help. PTA served hot cocoa and muffins and had prize drawings at the school. Thank you to PTA helpers Monica Frost, Lynn Dusek, Rose Henry, Nikkole Nichols, Amy Larson, and others who helped with refreshments and prizes.

Take a page from teens’ dedication
Triumvirate Theatre/Bookstore/Art Gallery gives a big bravo to Cook Inlet Academy students.

Caring is evident in time, effort spent
The LeeShore Center would like to thank the United Way Day of Caring volunteers.

EMS benefit was helped by volunteers, contributors
On September 9th, 2006, the American Legion Post No. 18 Family hosted their 5th Annual EMS Benefit. A spaghetti feed and item/pie auction was held. We would like to take this opportunity to thank all volunteers and contributors that made this event successful. With all the donations from the community and other peninsula businesses, we raised $8,144, which will be presented at the next EMS Meeting.

Knowles gets high marks for education plans
For those of us raising young children, we hope and pray they will receive the best education, the best health care and have access to the services they need to grow up safe, healthy and successful.

Vacation for your vote
A group sporting financial backing from two of Alaska’s largest oil companies and dedicated to defeating the proposed gas reserves tax has launched a contest asking Alaskans for their top 10 reasons to vote no on Ballot Measure 2 on Nov. 7.

Torpedo Lake breaks banks
Trees, root wads, dirt and chunks of peat moss, up to eight feet in length, flushed into the Kenai River Monday morning after water from Torpedo Lake washed out a creek separating the lake from the river.

Adopt-A-Stream teaches environmental awareness
In the woods surrounding Kalifornsky Beach Elementary School on Tuesday afternoon, a group of fifth-grade students marched through the trees and sang about their work like Snow White’s 25 dwarves.

Seward roads rough, ready
Repair work to damaged roads and bridges in the Seward area continues this week as the region works to recover from last week’s severe flooding.

District 33 candidates share views on gas
Both candidates running for the state House of Representatives District 33 seat told Soldotna business leaders the natural gas pipeline contract is the most important issue facing the Alaska Legislature right now.

Housing, office complex plan moving ahead
Before a land deal with Lowe’s and a lease extension for Wal-Mart are considered by the Kenai City Council tonight, the group is expected to hear public presentations on topics ranging from water bills in the off-season to independent living for seniors.

Water-testing kits available
Free test kits for assessing the purity of water drawn from private wells are being made available to Seward homeowners by the Kenai Peninsula Borough in the wake of last week’s flooding.

Carl ‘Allen’ Driver Jr.
Longtime Soldotna resident Carl “Allen” Driver Jr. died Monday, Oct. 16, 2006, surrounded by family following a brief battle with cancer. He was 47.

Neil David Armbrecht
Nikiski resident Neil David Armbrecht died Friday, Oct. 6, 2006 in Anchorage. He was 61.

Around the Peninsula
Home school fellowship setFlood meeting planned in SewardDisabled vets to meetSharks to be investigatedColon cancer to be discussed

Around the Peninsula
Borough honor choir performs today Annual pumpkin contest continues Domestic violence workshop set NRA fundraiser takes aim Halloween carnival set to spook Halloween party set for fun

Getting better, one step at a time
Whether it’s math, science or swimming, Kenai Central senior Taylor Moore isn’t afraid of the laborious work it takes to find the right answer and get to the next level.

NLC, GLC award honors
Both the Northern Lights Conference and the Great Land Conference announced postseason awards on Monday from voting conducted by the leagues’ coaches.

Peninsula Clarion - Schools

Key to happy dating is learning to avoid pressure situations
Dating is 90-percent pressure. It can be scary. To me it’s sad, watching my friends freak out about their hair, their makeup, and their bodies, all for a guy.

Soldotna senior’s project provides role models, reading buddies for elementary school students
Students at Redoubt and Soldotna elementary schools got a treat earlier this month when the biggest heroes they could imagine stopped by to share in their reading time.

KPC process technology instructor wins national recognition
The Center for the Advancement of Process Technology (CAPT), part of the National Science Foundation, has awarded Kenai River Campus process technology instructor David Spann the Trailblazer’s Educator of the Year Award. Spann accepted the award at CAPT’s annual Critical Issues and Best Practices Conference held Oct. 5 in Houston. This is the inaugural year for the award.

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