Tuesday, November 23, 2004

Moose, Bears, Fish, Flowers?
It takes a lot of determination and sacrifice to make that giant leap into being a small business owner. It can be a scary feeling putting it all out there and trusting your instinct and your partner. Someone has to do it, right?

We have all heard the talk about global warming in the past few years. In the ten years that I have lived in Alaska I definitely think our weather here has gotten warmer. I can remember fishing on Daniel's Lake on the first week of October and having between six and eight inches of ice on the lake. Here it is the 19th of November this year and we have very little ice and already covered with snow making it another year where we are dealing with over flow problems.

The ultimate model airplane
After 19 years and some 700 hours of labor, Nelson Amen realized the ultimate ambition of model airplane hobbyists when he soared into the Alaskan skies for the first time last month in his own homebuilt experimental aircraft. "On October 16th in Kenai Alaska, I took up my home built aircraft for the very first time as a test pilot and builder. It was quite a thrill, but a non-event, which is what I had planned, but by the time I got it back on the ground and stopped, believe me I was smiling from ear to ear," said Amen.

How to Cook a Turkey
Children from across the Peninsula submit their ideas on how best to prepare a Thanksgiving turkey.

Sweet Secret to Cutting Carbs During the Holidays
(ARA) It is the season of temptation. Office parties, cocktail receptions and family gatherings all offer lots of opportunities to stray from our healthy eating routines. But you don't need to skip the celebrations. Just keep in mind a few guidelines that will help you stick to your low carb resolution.

Toys That Teach - Experts Look to Toys to Help Develop Early Language, Math and Social Skills
(ARA) - This holiday season, why not consider toys that do more than clutter your house, are played with briefly and quickly forgotten. There are a host of toy companies that specialize in "developmental" toys -- playthings that experts say can give your child a running start on reading, math, social skills and even sports.

The Music of Christmas
(ARA) - The first sign of Christmas is the sound of music heard in stores and serenading callers on hold. No holiday celebration is complete without music. Listening to Bing Crosby's White Christmas is as traditional as baking cookies, sending out holiday cards and decorating the tree.

Birthday cards from Santa are big hit with kids
Birthday cards from Santa? That's just one of the treats Santa has in his bag this year, but you don't have to wait until Christmas. Available any time of the year, parents can register children to receive a birthday e-card from Santa. This FREE feature is one of several new activities northpole.com offers on its year-round family Web site, which drew almost 6 million visitors last year. Going into its ninth holiday season, Northpole.com continues to entertain children of all ages with fun activities such as:

Nostalgic Gifts Are Hot for the Holidays
(ARA) - Looking for a memorable holiday gift for a friend? Why not give a blast from the past. Toys and games from the 1970s, 1980s and 1990s are back. And apparently they are more popular than ever -- with adults. That's right. From Cabbage Patch Kids to Ms. Pac-Man video games to Star Wars figures, many classics are being re-released to brisk sales. And experts say adults are buying them not only for kids, but for themselves.

Homemade For the Holidays
(ARA) In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, take the time to make your celebration unique and extra special. By adding your own personal touch to holiday gifts, cards, decorations and treats, you can make this holiday season different from years past and show your loved ones you truly care.

Start a Family Tradition by Creating Holiday Craft Projects
(ARA) With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it is sometimes difficult to spend quality time with your family. Start a new family tradition by creating handmade projects for this holiday season. To make greeting cards, decorations or even wrapping paper, all you need is a little inspiration, easy-to-follow instructions and the right glue.

NOW PLAYING: National Treasure
I gripe and I complain about the state of Hollywood all the time. Every week I spend at least 800 words whining about how the studio system is creatively bankrupt and that the MPAA is holding us all hostage with their marketing system of rating movies. But you know what? I can't blame them any more. I just got out of National Treasure, a sad, low-rent Indiana Jones knock off. The audience loved it! Who can blame the studios for putting out cheap, predictable pablum when we keep buying it? It's not their fault, it's ours!

Despite challenges, Bush leads nation based on faith, character
I am proud to be serving under the Command of George W. Bush for four more years. For many Christians this is an answer to our prayers. No, I know he is not perfect no one is.

Help with ABATE holiday baskets much appreciated
Kenai Peninsula ABATE would like to thank the many volunteers who helped put together our Thanksgiving turkey baskets this year. A special thank you to this year's coordinator, Bud Ashby; Best Transit Mix, for the use of a box truck and IGA Country Foods for helping our dollars go further and Sunday pick-up. Thank you.

Voters spoke up about what kind of America they want
I must respond to the article by Dr. Raskin published in the letters to the editor on Nov. 9. Here you see a vivid example of how a certain highly educated individual (in this case a PhD.) with such a distorted view has lost sight of what America is all about.

Public school food unhealthy
Our peninsula public schools should take a lesson from the Montessori school and look into the food served at that school. The public school food served to our growing kids is appalling! Can't be any more expensive than throwing away half the food served to our public school kids. My grandson comes home from school starving because he knows the difference between good food and the preservative and salt-filled menu at public school.

Darwin's theory unsound
In the recent article, "Arguing the ape debate Alternate evolution theories in biology curriculum," the position taken by the Discovery Institute caught my attention. The Institute's Center for Science and Culture supports scientists studying intelligent-design theory, but opposes mandating it in schools because it is a relatively new concept.

Cabin Hoppers kick-off party a roaring success
The Caribou Hills Cabin Hoppers would like to thank the following sponsors for making the 2004 kick-off party a success: Alaska Oil Sales, Echo Lake Meats, Our Best Friends, Craig Taylor Equipment, Airport Equipment Rental, Peninsula Processing and Smokehouse, B & C Carquest, Alyeska Tire, Dale's Unlimited, Vincent's Auto, Sweeney's, Lance Mackey, Tustumena Lodge, Tustumena Sled Dog Association, A-1 Enterprises, ACS, Alaska Bolt and Chain, Soldotna True Value Hardware, Great Bear Ford, NAPA Auto Parts, Riverside Sea and Marine, Spenard Builders Supply, Ron's Honda, Schucks Auto, Buckets, Beemun's, Hooligan's, Papa Murphy's, Soldotna Florist, Atomic Nails and Styling, Que'Anna Bar, Sterling Tool, ConocoPhillips, R and K Industrial, Seismic Source, Burdick Enterprises and everyone else who contributed to our door prizes. It was only because of your generosity. Thank you. We also say thank you to everyone who volunteered time and effort to make it all happen.

Debate rooted in history
There is a remedial class in the history of American democracy being scheduled for this winter. Attendance is encouraged for all those who were outraged or grief stricken at the presidency of Kennedy, Johnson, Nixon, Carter, Reagan, Bush, Clinton or Bush (pick one or more). This will not be a critique of the First Amendment right to free speech or the benefits of well considered dissent. There will be no focus on truth, trust or tyranny. Instead, the class will consider some of the dilemmas which have faced American governance since the well documented intrigue and fighting over national unification in the late 1700s. It will also look at the pendulum of public opinion and how its swing is an essential gyro-like stabilizer for the compass of American progress.

Wolf sides with PETA; says fish farming is animal cruelty
In acknowledgement of PETA's "People for Ethical Treatment of Animals" recent press release announcing their stand for ethical treatment of fish.

Busch wins Nextel Cup
HOMESTEAD, Fla. Nothing could stop Kurt Busch from winning the closest championship in NASCAR history.

Good morning. A thought for your Thanksgiving week: Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things." Robert Brault

Hi, neighbors. My family joins me in wishing you a blessed Thanksgiving Day. During this season, I always like to get out the history books and read about our heritage, the ancient landmarks and the foundation for freedom of worship upon which our country is built. It leaves me profoundly thankful for God's mercy and providence.

Hi, neighbors. Thanks to Melissa Daugherty, I have more information regarding the new Cub Scout Pack No. 31 that has recently been formed in Sterling. The charter organization is the Sterling Fire Station. The group represents children from first grade through fifth. Kandice Hightower is the new Cub master. Kaye Larsen and Melissa Daugherty are the Webelos leaders who represent the fourth and fifth grades. Nathan Pannellis is the Bear and Wolf leader, which represents the second and third grades. Penny Edin is the Tiger leader, which represents the first grade. If you are interested in joining the Webelos call 262-6764; for the Bear or Wolf group call 260-4979; and lastly, call 260-3033 if you wish to be a Tiger.

Friends gathered at Kenai Christian Church for a moving-away potluck celebration for Linda Lyn Winters late last month. A friendship quilt made by Wanda Seyler and Diane Buchanan was an attraction at the festivities. David Higginbotham was master of ceremonies for the evening, which was coordinated by Grace Shook. The church praise band featured several sing-along-style favorites of Linda's. The Syvrud family sang a classical Doxology. Denya DeVolld performed a humorous skit portraying Linda as a teen.

Cooper Landing
Yes, Marine Lance Corp. Dustin Dreifuerst is the young man who made appearances at local meetings during his Eagle Scout work and, yes, this is Dustin's second deployment to that part of the world. In March of 2003, Dustin was stationed in Kuwait and subsequently went into Iraq.

Greetings from Kasilof. It was nice to see George Calvin on the front page of the paper and the members Kasilof Regional Historical Association recognized for its ongoing efforts in preserving the unique history of the Kasilof community. For those folks wishing to visit with George and tour the museum located at Mile .5 of Kalifornsky Beach Road, the hours of operation are from 1 to 4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday. For further museum information, call 262-0822.

Holiday greetings, neighbors. By now you have your turkey thawing, your silver polished and your tablecloths and real napkins ironed and are making a cornucopia arrangement out of grapes and flowers for your table centerpiece. Perhaps you have a candle arrangement on your mantel, and if you're one of the fortunate ones, have turkeys made from children's handprints stuck to your refrigerator door. Maybe you will have to work Thursday and won't be able to spend the day with your family, and maybe you will have soup for your dinner. However your preparations for this week's celebration are being made, I hope you will take time to ponder the reasons we celebrate this holiday.

Annual Thanksgiving meal gets lots of volunteer help
There is quite a lot of giving going on around the central Kenai Peninsula, and the usual suspects of this galore of gratitude are up to it again. These providers are trying to make more of their communities by filling the lives and the plates of their neighbors.

Clam Gulch man critical after collision
A Clam Gulch man re-mained in critical but stable condition at Alaska Native Medical Center on Monday, where he was being treated for injuries received in a wreck on the Sterling Highway near Kasilof late Friday afternoon.

New Vista worker ready to take on Kenai project
Kenai's new Vista Grant employee, Andy Varner, is quickly getting an inside view of the city's inner workings.

Little bridge costs come to $50,000
Soldotna City Manager Tom Boedeker incited disbelieving head-shaking and raised eyebrows with the news that the state of Alaska and the city of Soldotna see a roughly $50,000 difference in part of the funding of the bridge project due to begin this spring.

2006 Arctic Winter Games store opens its doors
Just in time for the Christmas season, the host society for the 2006 Arctic Winter Games has unleashed an avalanche of gift-buying opportunities on the central Kenai Peninsula.

Photo feature: Cool ride
Dustin Tracy spins his wheels while biking through soft snow in his neighborhood in Kenai last week. The forecast is for rain and snow mixed today and Wednesday with cloudy skies on Thanksgiving.

Wildlife trooper arrested for DV
A Bureau of Wildlife Enforcement trooper stationed in Soldotna was arrested and charged with domestic violence Saturday and taken to Wildwood Pretrial Facility.

Nikiski gives Hope Sunrise EMS way to save more lives
A donation of two cardiac monitors from the Nikiski Fire Department will help Hope Sunrise Emergency Medical Services save lives, according to the EMS chief.

Fire department program sets up area homes with safety equipment
A fire can engulf a home in minutes taking anything and everything in the structure with it, including human lives. But the Alaska Home Fire Safety Improvement Project aims to make sure that doesn't happen.

Adrienne Roberta Miller
Kenai resident Adrienne Roberta Miller died Monday, Nov. 22, 2004, at her home in Kenai. She was 35.

Deborah S. Arness
Kenai resident Deborah S. Arness died Friday, Nov. 19, 2004, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. She was 54.

Cynthia Marie Perkins
Anchorage resident Cynthia Marie Perkins died Monday, Nov. 15, 2004, at her home. She was 46.

Marriage advocates warn divorce a bigger threat than gays
NEW YORK ''Protection of marriage'' is now the watchword for many activists fighting to prevent gays and lesbians from marrying. Some conservatives, however, say marriage in America began unraveling long before the latest gay-rights push and are pleading for a fresh, soul-searching look at the institution.

House coalition leaders made the right move
Thumbs up to the Republicans and Democrats who tried to reach across party lines in the Alaska House of Representatives and build a coalition that would replace the GOP caucus. The bipartisan coalition was smacked down almost immediately as Republicans once again took control of the majority on Monday. The caucus system, with its closed-door meetings and punishment of members who vote against the party line, entrenches the powerful and robs dissenting lawmakers of what little leverage they might have.

Chirac doesn't get true nature of war on terror
French President Jacques Chirac has a good grasp of the current reality in Iraq but apparently not a clear vision of what it means in the long term.

Community News
The following is a list of Soldotna Community Schools classes and activities beginning this week. It is printed as a reminder to preregistered participants.

Around the Peninsula
Snow removal, safety reminders issuedLight parade, Christmas celebration setSoHi junior parents to meetChristmas cookies still availableRemembrance celebration setCribbage tourney plannedMystery Creek Road closesCandy fund-raiser beginsRock-a-billy fund-raiser planned

Community News
Doughnut fund-raiser scheduledRock-a-billy fund-raiser plannedCandy fund-raiser beginsCommunity Thanksgiving dinner setSoldotna Elks table tennis resultsLibrary plans December eventsIslands and Oceans

Peninsula People
Area residents enroll in college

Whittney and Joshua Tapley Michelle Cunningham Daniels and D.J. DanielsJulie and Dale Heckert Lisa Rochon-Martin and Jacob Martin Wendy and Mark Milligan

Soldotna couple volunteers to help hurricane victims
When Soldotna residents Len and Penny Malmquist made the decision to become volunteers for the American Red Cross, it was with the thought of putting their combined 47 years of experience in emergency medical and emergency management to use and to have an opportunity to travel.

Older folks not exercising, eating well
WASHINGTON Two-thirds of older Americans take part in leisure-time physical activities, but poor nutrition remains a problem, especially when it comes to fruit and vegetables, according to the latest snapshot of aging.

Senior Menus
What's on the menu this week for our area seniors

Senior Briefs
What activities are available this week for our area seniors

Falcons, Vick tower over Giants
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. Michael Vick ran for 104 yards and threw two first-half touchdown passes to Alge Crumpler to lead the Falcons (8-2), spoiling Eli Manning's first start.

KPHA squad gets two wins, one tie
The Kenai Peninsula Hockey Association PeeWee B team picked up two wins and a tie on a trip to Anchorage this weekend.

NBA suspends 9 players for more than 140 games
NEW YORK Ron Artest was suspended for the rest of the season Sunday and two of his Indiana Pacers teammates must miss a total of 55 games for fighting with fans in a melee that broke out at the end of a game against the Detroit Pistons.

No. 1 Wake Forest creams Bulldogs
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. Wake Forest celebrated its first appearance at No. 1 with an easy victory.

Clutch foul shots lift Timberwolves
DALLAS Kevin Garnett made two free throws with 5.9 seconds left then Trenton Hassell blocked Jerry Stackhouse's long jumper at the buzzer, giving the Minnesota Timberwolves an 83-82 victory over Dallas on Monday night in the Mavericks' first of several games without Dirk Nowitzki.

Penhale has won 58 straight matches
When Nikiski senior Lance Penhale entered high school, he was as small physically as he was tough mentally.

League lays down law
Turns out Ron Artest, his Pacers posse and those few dozen fools in the stands who wanted a piece of them aren't the only people around the NBA who know how to throw a punch.

Holtz retires
COLUMBIA, S.C. As South Carolina coach Lou Holtz left the game he's cherished for 33 seasons, he couldn't resist poor-mouthing himself one last time.

Shootout again attracts top teams
ANCHORAGE, Alaska Favorites have had a habit of stumbling at recent Great Alaska Shootouts.

Patriots take out Chiefs at Arrowhead
KANSAS CITY, Mo. Sometimes so many New England Patriots make big plays that Tom Brady gets overlooked.

Kenai's Hall helps Falcons to win
Travis Hall, who was born and raised in Kenai, played defensive line for the Atlanta Falcons in the team's 14-10 victory over the New York Giants Sunday. Hall did not have any tackles, leaving him with 14 unassisted tackles and four assisted tackles this season. The Falcons are at 8-2 atop the NFC South.

Wildcats declawed at hands of Cavaliers
CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. Freshman Sean Singletary scored 15 points to help Virginia upset No. 10 Arizona 78-60 on Sunday.

Phoenix wins fourth straight
LOS ANGELES Amare Stoudemire overcame early foul trouble to score 33 points, and the Phoenix Suns beat the Los Angeles Clippers 122-111 on Sunday for their fourth straight victory.

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