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Thursday, December 6, 2001

Alaska's active volcano watch list grows
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Standing on top of 14,163-foot Mount Wrangell, Guy Tytgat took in the view. The Wrangell-St. Elias Range stretched out all around him.

Anchorage twins' robot takes $50,000 prize in science competition
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Twin sisters who attend Anchorage's East High School have won $50,000 in scholarship money for inventing an ice-crawling robot, built from parts worth about $200.

Southeast towns weathering economic distress differently
JUNEAU (AP) -- Much of the economic distress felt by Southeast communities from losses in the timber industry had little impact on Juneau, an analysis by the McDowell Group concluded.

Man dies in camp behind Anchorage Wal-Mart
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A man living in a camp behind an Anchorage Wal-Mart store was found dead last night.

Federal fisheries panel to set 2002 groundfish quotas
ANCHORAGE (AP) - Groundfish quotas for 2002 are likely to be up for the eastern Bering Sea and down for the Gulf of Alaska, based on stock assessments being considered this week by federal fisheries officials.

State closes Fortymile caribou winter hunt
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- The Fortymile caribou winter hunting season will close at midnight Friday because the quota has been reached, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.

Frozen pipes burst flooding girls dormitory
SITKA (AP) -- A sprinkler system burst at a girls dormitory of Mount Edgecumbe High School forcing the evacuation of 99 students, school officials said.

State panel recommends long list of racism reforms
JUNEAU (AP) -- A state panel created following racially motivated paintball attacks on Natives in Anchorage issued a long list of reforms on Thursday it says will help heal intolerance in Alaska.

Banks defrauded by RV dealer collect $623,000
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Federal prosecutors returned a total of $623,482 Tuesday to three banks that were defrauded by former RV dealer Danial Twitchell of Anchorage.

Man attacked by bear on Admiralty Island
JUNEAU (AP) -- A Juneau man who was mauled by a grizzly bear Wednesday was reported in satisfactory condition after surgery at Harborview Medical Center in Seattle.

Shooting victim obtains protective order against husband
JUNEAU (AP) -- A woman wounded by an unknown assailant last month in a mall parking lot has obtained a protective order against her estranged husband, accusing him in court of shooting her.

State to transfer Hatcher Pass Land to borough
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- State officials have agreed to give the Matanuska-Susitna Borough title to more than 3,000 acres of land in Hatcher Pass, over the objections of some local residents and wildlife officials who say the transfer could damage the environment.

Earthquake rattles area southeast of Deadhorse
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An estimated 4.5-magnitude earthquake rattled an area 28 miles southeast of Deadhorse on Tuesday afternoon.

Wasilla council considers sales tax to pay for sport center
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Wasilla City Council is considering a measure to raise the city sales tax to pay for a new multiuse sports arena that would include a hockey rink and basketball courts.

Borough mayor favors tax breaks for volunteers
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Volunteer firefighters and paramedics would receive a tax break on their property taxes under a plan being promoted by the borough mayor.

Military resort in Seward reopens
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A popular vacation getaway for Alaska's military is open for business this winter after all.

State ferry to run between Metlakatla in 2003
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- A new state ferry is scheduled to make daily trips between Metlakatla and here in 2003, the Alaska Marine Highway System said.

Gease named to top job at Kenai Convention and Visitors Bureau01
KENAI (AP) -- Ricky Gease has been hired as the new executive director of the Kenai Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Unocal offers reward in search for vandals
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Unocal Alaska is offering a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest of those who vandalized a truck at the Beluga barge landing area on the western shore of Cook Inlet.

Revised rules boost CDQ potential in Western Alaska
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A federal fisheries panel on Wednesday agreed to boost trip limits for halibut to 10,000 pounds in specific community development quota areas.

Quilt shop owner is sentenced for labor violation
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- A Fairbanks quilt shop owner has been given a suspended imposition of sentence after pleading no contest to charges she broke child-labor and minimum wage laws.

Traffic accident injures Anchorage man
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A 32-year-old Anchorage man was critically injured Wednesday after his car crossed two lanes of traffic and struck another vehicle.

Southeast marine shuttle offers service in Puget Sound
HAINES (AP) -- A marine shuttle service that moves passengers between Haines, Skagway and Juneau during summer months is using its vessels this winter in Puget Sound.

Senate panel approves labels on foreign seafood
JUNEAU (AP) -- Alaska fishermen won a victory Tuesday when the U.S. Senate Finance Committee approved a provision that would force retailers to label foreign seafood products to show country of origin.

Mat-Su politicians file suit to toss out recall petitions
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Matanuska-Susitna Borough mayor and an assemblywoman filed suit Monday asking that recall petitions against them be declared invalid.

Woman treated for smoke inhalation after fire at senior center
JUNEAU (AP) -- A 93-year-old woman was treated for smoke inhalation and minor burns after a fire at the Juneau Senior Center on Tuesday.

Anchorage finally records subzero temperatures
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- High pressure up north and clear skies overhead finally sent temperatures in Anchorage below zero over the weekend -- the first time for that official mark in 683 days.

Fairbanks air travel on rebound after Sept. 11
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Air travel in Alaska's Interior was down following the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, but now air travel appears to be getting back to normal.

Knowles chief of staff leaving state government
JUNEAU (AP) -- Gov. Tony Knowles will finish his last year in office without his top aide.

Winter weather doesn't deter determined runners
Juneau (AP) -- Wind: Steady, 20 to 30 mph. Temperature: In the 20s, depending on cloud cover. Precipitation: Rain, snow, sleet -- all possibilities. Perfect weather for a run.

Fairbanks board denies middle school travel to nation's capital
FAIRBANKS -- The Fairbanks North Star Borough School Board has denied a request by a middle school group to travel to Washington, D.C. for a social studies outing out of fear the children could be harmed in a terrorist attack.

Selig prepares to address Congress on baseball's losses
Baseball had an operating loss of $232 million this year, including a major league-leading $52.9 million by the Toronto Blue Jays, according to a report that will be given to Congress on Thursday.

Testimony in players' grievance over contraction plan recessed until Monday
IRVING, Texas -- After two days of testimony, the grievance by baseball players to block owners from eliminating two teams recessed Wednesday with the first witness still on the stand.

Union's effort to block Major League Baseball contraction goes to arbitrator
IRVING, Texas -- An arbitrator began hearing testimony Tuesday in a grievance by the players' association to block baseball's plan to eliminate two teams before next season.

Practicality marks boomers' wish lists
They might be known as the ''me'' generation, the yuppies, the ones living in a material world. But not so this holiday shopping season as spendthrift baby boomers decide less is more.

Business Briefs
Southeast weathering economic stress differentlyQuilt shop owner is sentenced for labor violationBanks defrauded by RV dealer collect $623,000

Microsoft introduces software system to run vehicular gadgets
DETROIT -- Even as automakers and suppliers wrestle with the question of how many and which onboard electronic gadgets consumers are willing to pay for, Microsoft Corp. on Wednesday unveiled the latest version of its software platform to operate the devices.

Instructors' works on exhibit at art gallery for December
The Faculty Show at the Kenai Peninsula College Art Gallery gives students and art patrons alike a chance to view the creative sides of six KPC faculty members.

What's Happening
Best BetsEvents and ExhibitsEntertainmentUpcoming EventsFilmsDown the RoadAnchorage Events

'Solid Brass' tales capture adventures of diving in Cook Inlet
Watching Cook Inlet's surging tides is an awesome thing. But watching isn't author Bob Wick's style. In his book "Solid Brass," Wick shares what inlet tides are like below the surface.

All bets are off -- 'Ocean's Eleven' is the clear winner
Forget every other heist movie that came out this year -- and there was a vault full of them. ''Ocean's Eleven'' is the one with the goods.

Jeff Gordon in the spotlight
Series champion Jeff Gordon and his wife, Brooke, arrive at the NASCAR Awards Banquet in New York.

Penske loses veteran
ATLANTA -- The shakeup at Penske South Racing started last week when the No. 12 race team was dissolved. It continued Wednesday with the resignation of Rusty Wallace's crew chief.

Stewart sounds off on NASCAR at awards banquet
NEW YORK -- The people that invited Tony Stewart to New York last week certainly made it worth his while. The R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Co., along with other sponsors of the NASCAR Winston Cup Series, handed Stewart a check for more than $1.5 million in season-ending bonuses and awards.

Deep freeze taking toll on area
Cold weather can have a chilling effect on many aspects of life when the temperature dips below zero. Fortunately, there are several remedies to keep those vehicles, pipes and other cold-weather victims operating smoothly.

Nikiski mulling law enforcement options
The North Peninsula Community Council is out to help take a bite out of crime in the unincorporated areas north of the city of Kenai.

Concerns raised over staff cuts, funding
New enrollment projections predict seven fewer students at Nikiski Middle-Senior High School next year, meaning the school will lose half a teaching position, according to recently released staffing formulas.

Sources: Wife, daughters of bin Laden's top strategist killed
CAIRO, Egypt -- The wife and three daughters of Osama bin Laden's top strategist were killed in an airstrike on Kandahar, the remaining Taliban stronghold, sources close to Islamic militants in Afghanistan said Tuesday.

Just how cold is it, anyway?
It got cold. It got real cold. But, hey, what do you expect in Alaska in the winter?

School board opposes districting
To district, or not to district, the school board -- that has become a thorny question for the Kenai Peninsula Borough. The question could end up on the 2002 ballot.

Photo feature: New flag
Members of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10046 stand at attention as the flag is raised for the first time during a ceremony at the Economic Development District building in Kenai Tuesday morning.

Hunt for bin Laden intensifies
JALALABAD, Afghanistan -- Anti-Taliban troops hunting Osama bin Laden said they clashed Tuesday with al-Qaida fighters near their hideouts in the towering mountains along the Pakistan border.

Kenai Convention and Visitors Bureau fills top post
Ricky Gease has been hired as the new executive director of the Kenai Convention and Visitors Bureau.

Debbie Howard
Kenai resident Debbie Howard died Monday, Dec. 3, 2001, at her home. She was 44.

Debbie J. Howard
Kenai resident Debbie J. Howard died Monday, Dec. 3, 2001, in her home, surrounded by her family, after a battle with lung cancer. She was 44.

Economics 101: When wealthy reduce spending, poor are hurt
There's a little ditty from the 1961 Broadway musical "Carnival" that says something, in a different context, about the class warfare fought by Democrats against Republicans:

Making voting easier doesn't cure problem of apathetic citizenry
More than 60 percent of voters who responded to the informal survey tucked inside the mail-in ballots during the consolidation election back in August said they liked the new process.

Applause
School appreciates flag-folding ceremony in honor of Veterans DayStudents learn Iditarod lessons in special clinic

World should see terrorists punished
President Bush claims to want Osama bin Laden ''dead or alive,'' but it's plain what he'd prefer. He shares the hankerings of Vice President Dick Cheney, who says he'd happily take the man's head on a platter. Summary execution might bring a tidy end to this horrible tale, but tidiness isn't everything. There's also the matter of justice.

How far do Americans' free-speech rights go?
You have the right to peaceably assemble -- it says so right in the Bill of Rights. You can even carry signs that protest something or other and, if you feel like it, march around and say mean things for a few hours.

Applause
Many contribute to success of KPTMC's annual fund-raiserCraft fair means it's beginning to look more like Christmas

Letters to the Editor
Many displaying their patriotism know nothing of flag etiquetteSubsistence issue should be discussed with facts, good will

Redistricting changes little
Less than a year before elections put control of Congress to voters, the behind-the-scenes struggle to gain an advantage through redistricting has so far kept both Republicans and Democrats from making decisive gains.

Alaska's active volcano watch list grows
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Standing on top of 14,163-foot Mount Wrangell, Guy Tytgat took in the view. The Wrangell-St. Elias Range stretched out all around him.

Philmont Ranch Trekking with Boy Scouts in New Mexico
PHILMONT SCOUT RANCH, N.M. (AP) -- Already at 11,600 feet and gasping as I trudged higher, with the thunder of an approaching storm echoing across the canyons, I began to wonder why I ever wanted to climb Mount Phillips in the first place.

Winter weather doesn't deter determined runners
Juneau (AP) -- Wind: Steady, 20 to 30 mph. Temperature: In the 20s, depending on cloud cover. Precipitation: Rain, snow, sleet -- all possibilities. Perfect weather for a run.

Around the Peninsula
Publisher to speak at chamber lunchBlood bank open through weekBand to perform at senior centersPhotography show opens ThursdaySilent auction being heldTree-lighting ceremony plannedSale to raise money for fire stationKasilof Historical Society meeting slatedClass for Red Cross instructors offeredChristmas decorating contest being heldConflict resolution classes offeredHanukkah celebration plannedCPGH service board meeting slated

Around the Peninsula
Alert siren test plannedSoroptimists to meet todayEvening story time at Kenai libraryNinilchik Fire Department meeting slatedAviation safety meeting to be held todayResource Development Council meeting plannedHospice to hold remembrance celebrationSwimming tryouts to be heldWomen's holiday luncheon planned

AmeriCorps volunteers add to KPC atmosphere
Kenai Peninsula College has enjoyed the benefits of the AmeriCorps program since 1995.

School Menus
White or chocolate milk is served at each meal.

District School News
What's going on at our area schools

Peninsula home schoolers spend a day at the movies
Why do monsters always seem to come from the closet? More than 100 home-school students were able to answer that question after attending a home school showing of "Monsters, Inc." at the Orca Theater Nov. 16. The theater opened its doors, allowing home schoolers on the Kenai Peninsula an opportunity to gather.

Holiday traditions keep kids connected
As we sit around with friends, our extended family in Alaska, eating too much turkey on Thanksgiving Day, the importance of "ritual" becomes even clearer. Some years it seems like more hassle than it is worth: planning the day, preparing the meal, setting the table and cleaning up the mess. But you know what? We would miss it if we didn't do it.

Honor Roll
The following students were named to the Kenai Middle School first-quarter honor roll.

Mountain View third-graders send holiday joy to Russia by shoe box
Shoe boxes are small, but when filled with lovingly selected gifts, they bring joy a hundred times its size to orphans and other children in Siberia.

Around the District
Voice of Democracy winners announcedKCHS club seeks used toysChallenger Center offers December workshopsSMS announces Students of the MonthSoHi announces Students of the MonthConference taps board membersFine arts camp in Fairbanks closesState board tackles major school issuesWeb site offers lessons in citizenship

The lunch break: A center for new beginnings, memories
All eyes in the class gratefully steal a glimpse at the accustomed clock above the chalk board. Three, two, one and -- finally -- the bell rings.

This winter a wonderland for ski teams
Last year, area high school ski coaches got a chance to refine their dry-land training techniques. This year, coaches tossed those techniques right out the window.

Wildcats upset Illini
PHOENIX -- Jason Gardner scored 18 of his 23 points in the second half, including six consecutive free throws over the final 54 seconds, and No. 7 Arizona beat fifth-ranked Illinois 87-82 Tuesday night.

Kidd dishes out 13 assists in New Jersey win over Phoenix
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- Jason Kidd was at his unselfish best in his first game against his former team, accumulating 11 of his 13 assists before he even scored a point as the New Jersey Nets beat the Phoenix Suns 106-87 Wednesday night.

Olympic flame kindled in U.S.
ATLANTA -- Muhammad Ali sent the Olympic torch on its two-month journey to the Winter Games in Salt Lake City after a welcoming ceremony Tuesday in the last U.S. city to hold the games.

USA's 'Miracle' hockey team returns to ice
It's been almost 22 years since they've skated together, a lifetime filled with families and careers and one very special memory.

Sports Briefs
Yankees and Karsay close to dealApplewhite gets Holiday Bowl startMaryland headed to Orange Bowl, Illinois to Sugar

Keenan fires up Panthers for win
SUNRISE, Fla. -- The Mike Keenan era got off to a perfect start Wednesday night.

Spurs deflate Wizards
SAN ANTONIO -- With Michael Jordan watching from the sidelines, Antonio Daniels scored 15 points and Tim Duncan and David Robinson added 13 each as the San Antonio Spurs routed the Washington Wizards 103-88 Tuesday night.

Gators get Spartans
GAINESVILLE, Fla. -- Behind a career-high 23 points from Matt Bonner and a smothering full-court press, the No. 6 Florida men's basketball team beat No. 24 Michigan State 74-70 Wednesday night.

Bondra notches Nos. 400, 401 in Caps win
WASHINGTON -- Peter Bondra scored his 400th and 401st NHL goals as the Washington Capitals beat the New York Rangers 5-2 Tuesday night.

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