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Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Reader wonders how others feel about lights
What do you think? Driving over the bridge for the first time this summer I have to tell you I was so thrilled. I think our new bridge is beautiful. Watching the construction over the last two years and wondering how it would look was exciting and fun.

Community rewards students' achievements
The Kenai Central High School Academic Banquet was held Nov. 5 at the school. One hundred ten students were honored for earning a GPA of 3.5 or above during spring semester of 2007.

HEA needs to learn from mistakes
I recently read the article in which HEA Board President Dave Carey stated HEA is eyeing small-scale hydroelectric projects to produce more electricity. Carey is obviously in favor of pursuing these projects and hopes the federal law currently prohibiting the funding of such projects will be amended to allow the funding of the projects.

Kids' event a group effort
The trunk-or-treat event held on Halloween night at the Boys & Girls Club in Kenai was a huge success and provided an additional event for the youth in our community. Many thanks to the wonderful sponsors, volunteers and everyone who donated items: HEA, Enstar, Alaska USA Federal Credit Union, the law office of Robert J. Molloy, Udelhoven, city of Kenai, Kenai Fire Department, Coast Guard, Petterson Construction, Stanley Ford, Air Liquide, Odom Coca-Cola, Airport Rental, Pizza Boys, Little Skimo's, Carlile, Tom and Dorothy Wagoner, Country Foods, Challenger Learning Center of Alaska, Nikiski Northstar PTA, Kenai Senior Citizens Center, State Farm, B&G Club Nikiski, Brandy Washburn, Body Mind & Spirits, Attitudes Salon, Soldotna Chamber of Commerce, Kenai Line Dancers, Shauna Thornton, Carla Pollard, the staff of the club, Sparky, the Kenai Kardinal, State Farm Bear, clubhouse parents and all the other individuals who either parked their vehicle in our parking lot and/or contributed candy.

Support makes a big difference
There are many ways Kenai Peninsula residents have blessed us here at the Kenai Peninsula Food Bank, but the biggest and best blessings we receive are from supporters.

Friends appreciate support
The Friends of the Kenai Community Library would like to thank the following individuals and organizations who helped to make our October raffle/fund-raiser a success: the library staff, Brenda Manka, Aquio Purugannan, Emily DeForest, who sold more than one-third of the tickets herself, and the board of trustees for ticket sales; Eagles Aerie No. 3525 for the use of their facility; Tim Navarre, Kelly Bookey, Janet Brown, Cliff, Kathy and Ted Heus, Jim Satathite, Bill and Melanie Switzer, Alan Wooten, Tom Walker, Jake Malanaphy, Craig and Linda Ralston, Jim and Evenson, Dewayne Benton, Wayne and Sharon Prentice and Mary Kivi for help with decorating, set-up and cleanup; Nedra Evenson, Sandy Lewis, Tom Walker and Kathy Heus for "doorman duty"; Alan Wooten, emcee; Bill Switzer, tumbler attendant; Peter Micciche, "the staple guy"; Aquio Purugganan and his crew for their delicious meal; and Copy Cats for ticket printing. Thanks also to Joan Hansen for publicity in the "Neighbors" column.

Public park plan ready
The subject of a fair amount of debate, the conceptual redesign of Soldotna Creek Park, will be presented in its final form to the city council during a work session at 5:30 p.m. Wednesday.

'We are all heroes'
At the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, the central Kenai Peninsula community, along with other communities around the country, paused to honor all those who have served.

Reminder: Property owners need to pull up structures
There isn't any ice on the Kenai River yet, but riverfront property owners should already have removed their floating docks, as well stairways and walkways that extend into or over the water.

Cold weather not a deterrent to local gardening enthusiasts
Cold temperatures, frozen ground, little sunlight winter can be a tough time for those with green thumbs.

Kenai chamber gets new director
A former Holland America Line sales and marketing manager has been named to head the Kenai Chamber of Commerce.

Photo feature: Berry cold
Cranberries are framed by fresh snow in the Kenai Mountains near the Russian River on Sunday afternoon. Forecasters are calling for wind and snow.

Special session drags on
Alaska House members representing Kenai Peninsula districts found themselves on opposite sides last Sunday when voting to pass a rewrite of state's Petroleum Production Tax that included a base tax rate on oil company net profits of 25 percent.

Fire held to kitchen
In just a few more minutes, had firefighters not arrived when they did, a house fire across the street from the Catholic church in Soldotna would have been much worse Saturday night.

Freight limits crimp salmon sales
JUNEAU A small portion of the fish caught in Southeast Alaska could be worth a lot more, if it could just get on a plane.

Albert Hugh "Nick" Nicholson
Soldotna resident Albert Hugh "Nick" Nicholson died Saturday, Nov. 10, 2007, at his home. He was 71.

Taking on a brand new role: Reluctant activist pushes for better future for Alaska's resources
This is the story of a reluctant activist. Like a lot of folks, I made my way to Alaska as a young man and was immediately struck by the magic of this place.

Peninsula Reflections
Aviation was especially important to Kasilof before 1950 when the Sterling Highway was dedicated. The Kasilof airstrip was cleared in the late 1930s. Archie McLane spearheaded that work and provided upkeep for 20 years or more. Maintenance of the field became a responsibility of Kasilof Boosters Club, which organized about 1957 with Enid McLane as president. In those days the airstrip was used for pilot training, among other things. It is thought that Ray McNutt of Sterling gave lessons here. His students (among which was Burt Carver and, probably, Harry Reger) used the unregulated strip to practice take-offs and landings.

Soldotna Community News
When World War II is mentioned, D-Day and the Battle of the Bulge are two prominent events that come to mind. With November being a time to honor veterans, it's a privilege to highlight a local hero, Dan Furlong, who served in both of these battles.

Around the Peninsula
Kenai library closures set Public health plans one-day closure Pingpong offered Crooners sought PFLAG to meet Gardeners to gather Soldotna seniors open gift shop Cybersmarts! workshop set Dinner, bingo, auction fundraiser planned Mushrooms to be discussed Youth snowmachine safety event set

Kenai Community News
Our local returning veterans were treated to a big welcome back celebration over the weekend, and well deserved it was. Thanks to them all, wherever and however they served, for helping to preserve the freedoms some take for granted. I appreciate you all, young or not-so-young, who have guarded our country for so long.

Around the Peninsula
PFLAG to meet Women invited to take-a-break Soldotna seniors open gift shop DAV to meet Cybersmarts! workshop set Auction fundraiser set Hospice open house set Dinner, auction fundraiser planned Caregiver Appreciation Day set Fish and Game AC to meet Library seeks volunteers Community directory available Habitat applications offered Kids reading program continues

Kasilof Community News
The Firewise folks held their monthly meeting a week ago at Kasilof Fire Station. Their slash disposal brush pile was stacked about 15 to 20 feet high and torched Oct. 25. Flames licked away at the bottom of marshmallow clouds. All good fun and under direct supervision of the experts much safer than lots of little burns operated by amateurs during fire dangerous summer months. Ken and Diana Coby delivered more than 208 loads to the disposal site. Bill Casey, 87, of Cohoe is something of a hero. He converted a boat trailer into a brush hauler and rounded up about 80 loads.

Ninilchik Community News
On the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month in 1918, the world rejoiced as an armistice was signed, ending the "war to end all wars." The following year, Nov. 11 was set aside as Armistice Day a day to honor the men and women who gave their lives to serve their country during World War I. The day continued to be observed after World War II, but in 1953 congress passed a bill to rename the federal holiday as Veteran's Day. Finally, in 1971 President Nixon declared the holiday to be the second Monday in November. I enjoy living in peace and freedom because brave soldiers were willing to give their lives to preserve these priceless treasures for me.

Nikiski Community News
Good day to all of my Nikiski neighbors.

Sterling Community News
The bear saga at our household is still playing out, even though I would have thought that any self-respecting bear would have been in bed for the winter by now. Last week we had a brown bear tear up a fence, including two electric fence wires to get inside our chicken pen. Fortunately, it seemed to be confused by the fencing and didn't manage to get inside the coop, so the chickens survived. If you have livestock to protect, please be aware that the bears are still very much awake and on the prowl in the Sterling area.

Students find ways to serve
Kenai Peninsula Borough School District students gathered in the Soldotna Elementary School library Wednesday to spread some holiday cheer as far away as Washington, D.C., in the form of green snowmen, lopsided Christmas trees and the occasional one-eyed Santa.

Writer tries to find meaning in meaningless homework
Why should I do my homework? Why should I spend hours outside of school toiling away on an assignment just for the teacher to glance at and then assign a grade based on what they see in front of them? How are solving infinite quadratic equations in a $100 calculator going to help me in the real world?

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

Kenai Peninsula College: Around Campus
What do soldiers serving in Iraq, a person living in Montana, another in Louisiana working on an oil platform and a woman working on a fishing boat have in common? They have taken the school's Online Survey of Chemistry class co-taught by adjunct professors Bob Amundson and Susan Mircovich and full-time professor Andy Veh.

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