Tuesday, December 7, 2004

Steroid talks progress, but no deal yet
NEW YORK Baseball players and owners have made progress toward toughening rules on steroid testing. How close they are to an agreement depends on which side you listen to.

Christmas comes to Kenai and Santa too...
Everyone waiting was also treated to hot cocoa from McDonalds and cookies baked at the Kenai Senior Center. "Barry Eldridge kept running back and forth to keep us supplied, the seniors baked 500 for us and Safeway came through with another 300 and Peterkin Distributing supplied us with all the candy canes," said Odgers. It was a tired but jolly Santa that climbed back aboard the Kenai Fire Department ladder truck to finish off the electric light parade which was coordinated and judged by the Kenai Peninsula Racing Lions Club. Following the parade thousands of eyes turned to the mild evening sky for a zinging fireworks spectacular display presented by Fire Art by Griz in cooperation with the Kenai Fire Department and Fire Marshall James Baisden.

Edward Jones Ranks No. 1 in National Survey of Brokers For the 12th Consecutive Year
For the 12th consecutive year, Edward Jones ranked No. 1 in Registered Representative magazine's annual survey of the nation's seven largest financial-services firms. The magazine randomly selects brokers nationwide and asks them to rank their firms in various categories.

Buying and selling local crafts for Christmas
The annual Arts and Crafts fair sponsored by the Peninsula Art Guild has become a holiday shopping tradition as well as an opportunity for local artists to exhibit and market their wares. Hand crafted items have become popular gifts for Alaskans as well as unique items to send to friends and family living in the lower 48. According to Lauren Wakefield, the fair coordinator for the Peninsula Art Guild, people come from all over the Peninsula to buy and sell their crafts, "We even have people here from Anchorage, Chugiak, and Eagle River and of course lots of people from Homer and the local Kenai, Soldotna, area, plus everywhere in-between like Moose Pass, Sterling, and Clam Gulch," said Wakefield.

Raven's Roost opens; Mascot receives its name...
With the New Year 2005 only weeks away, the eyes of the nations of the circumpolar north and their athletes are focusing on the Kenai Peninsula, the host for the 2006 Arctic Winter Games. Underscoring the broad based community support that is growing for the coming of the Games throughout the Peninsula, the official Arctic Winter Games apparel store called the Raven's Roost, had their official ribbon cutting grand opening last Saturday. Local government officials from around the Peninsula joined Host Society president and Borough Mayor Dale Bagley for the event as well as a new Alaskan celebrity, the official mascot for the 2006 Arctic Winter Games "Rascal" the loveable Raven.

Outdoors
During the week of Thanksgiving I'm sure many of you heard about the deer hunting shooting in Wisconsin. Eight hunters were shot on private property by a trespassing hunter over a dispute about hunting in a tree stand. Six of the hunters died from their wounds and two survived. As many of you know I grew up in Wisconsin and spent countless hours hunting deer and other types of wild life there.

Electric Light Parade illumines All American City...
Mild temperatures encouraged hundreds of families to turn out for last weeks Electric Light Parade which began at the Kenai Senior Citizens Center and ended up before a panel of judges in the Kenai Chamber of Commerce's parking lot. There were 17 participants in this year's parade which seems to get larger and more creative each year. From Nutcracker Ballet dancers to flying Hogs and marching Young Marines the annual parade was a D-light to see.

NOW PLAYING A Day Without a Mexican / Intermission
Assuming you tried to go out to the movies this weekend, you will have noticed that our theaters got nothing new this week. This is a typical pitfall of living in a community with a limited number of screens. Theater owners are often contractually bound to keep certain movies for a minimum number of weeks, and with a whole host of holiday choices, it was inevitable that we would miss some of the the big releases. We never saw Ray or Alexander and now it looks like the Julia Roberts/Natalie Portman/Jude Law romantic drama Closer will be AWOL as well. But hey, National Treasure will probably play through the new year considering audiences inexplicable love for it. With our lack of choices in mind, I decided to eschew the inevitable review for Spongebob (How do you adapt a mildly clever twenty-three minute sketch cartoon into a full-length feature? Answer: you dont.) and instead review two new DVD releases, each of which are small, low-budget films that received only limited theatrical release before they were whisked away to video.

Many ideas needed to ensure healthy fishing industry
At present, many new ideas are expressed within the text of more than 300 proposals on Cook Inlet that will be addressed at the Board of Fish meeting in Anchorage in January.

Real change in Cook Inlet would be regulating guides, dipnetters
Your editorial in Friday's paper needs some correcting. I take issue with your conclusion, which was I should look to the future and not at the past glory days of full nets and high prices. I am looking to the future and I see full nets and higher prices. This year was a good example. We caught a lot of fish. The price wasn't higher, but we made money. Why? Because we got to fish many more days! Why don't you emphasize that? What good is the Kenai Wild program if we don't get to fish? As soon as we can't supply the demand, the market will be gone to some other region in the state.

Sponsors, volunteers help make wrestling tournament a success
The Soldotna High School wrestling team and boosters would like to say thanks to all the peole and businesses who made the North-South wrestling tournament a success. More than 225 wrestlers from Fairbanks to Homer competed in the tournament that was made possible by the hard work and dedication of many local businesses and volunteers. We owe the following a very special thank you3

Soldotna
Hello, neighbors. A recent e-mail was sent to me that reads: "Two questions I hope you can answer in your column: 1) Whatever happened to the Coldstone Creamery store that was coming to Soldotna, and 2) is there anything to the latest rumors of Wal-Mart coming to Soldotna, which started shortly after the water line work on K-Beach started?"

Nikiski
Good morning. A sweet thought for your week: "Give a little love to a child and you get a great deal back." - John Ruskin

Ninilchik
Hi, neighbors. Dec. 7, 1941 - a date that "would live in infamy," declared President Franklin D. Roosevelt after the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor.

Sterling
Hi neighbors. If you read a lot,you might be interested in the third annual Peninsula Reading Carnival on Jan. 29. If you are interested in reserving booth space, call Virginia Morgan at 283-9374. It is not too early to make a reservation.

Cooper Landing
The Kenai Peninsula Economic Development District held a planning forum at the community hall Nov. 22. I heard two of the community concerns expressed were regarding the state Department of Transportation and Public Facilities' decision on a route for the Sterling Highway project through the landing and the need for a community bike path from one end to the other or from Mile 45 to Mile 55.

Kenai
Hello, neighbors. It's hard to write the date without remembering the events that happened on this day in Pearl Harbor so many years ago. I have a shadowy recollection of that war, even though I was a child at the time. Later, I particularly remember standing on my front porch listening to the sirens at the sugar factory, the brick and tile plant, and the fire department announce the news that "the war is over," as tears streamed down my mother's face. I was too young to understand how Mom could be so happy and cry at the same time, but today I know how we will all feel when our loved ones serving in the present conflict will be allowed to come home.

Kasilof
Happy holidays from festive Kasilof. Like many, for me, the sight of snow is a welcome relief. I hope it's a trend.

New property tax notices sent
Kenai Peninsula Borough resident property owners should have received notices recently from the tax assessor's office. If you received a notice with a bright-orange card that reads "Attention Borough Resident - Immediate Attention Required," don't throw it out.

Homer research reserve educates more than students
Madeline Mullikin and Kate Kerns hover over a high-powered microscope taking turns peering at a nudibranch floating in a small glass container.

Should state require history course?
ANCHORAGE (AP) The state Board of Education this week will take up a proposal to make the study of Alaska history a graduation requirement for high school students.

Area group forms to lobby for new Legislature locale
A small band of central Kenai Peninsula voters got together in Soldotna on Thursday and formed a committee to look into moving the state's Legislature out of Juneau.

Kenai council looks to add on
An infusion of youth could soon be coming to the Kenai City Council.

Capitol design jury includes Seward woman
Juneau resident Puanani Maunu is one of the nine jurors chosen by the Capitol Planning Commission to select designs for a new capitol.

Open for business
Gov. Frank Murkowski met with the public for several hours Saturday afternoon to recognize the opening of the new Kenai governor's office.

SART making return to central peninsula
When a victim of sexual assault on the central Kenai Peninsula gathers the courage to report the crime, she faces one more challenge. To get evidence from her body in a sexual assault investigation, Alaska State Troopers, Kenai Police or Soldotna Police ask trained sexual assault nurse examiners to help them. Lately, that has meant bringing the victim to South Peninsula Hospital in Homer, an hour or more drive.

Protection sought for surgeons
Two South Peninsula Hospital surgeons have said they would be unable to continue operating at the facility without some financial assistance in acquiring malpractice insurance mandated by the corporation operating the hospital.

'Tis the season for optimism in the Middle East
How appropriate that, during the Christmas season, dramatic progress is being made toward Middle East peace.

Today a day to honor those who sacrificed for their country
Freedoms, values and principles have burned a place into our existance as Americans. We have continually and repeatedly responded to threats on our way of life. During the 1930s and 40s, the world's Axis of Evil enslaved Europe and the far East to the point of destroying all hopes and ambitions and free spirit of responsible people who believe in a good and merciful God.

Schools, cities should benefit from budget surplus What others say
Some states would be envious of Alaska even in our worst budget times, but once again financial fortune has smiled on this state and the result will be hundreds of millions of unexpected dollars into its lap.

Headed in the right direction
Lots of people will try to tell you two heads are better than one, but the truth is two heads are just a little freaky.

SoHi cheerleading squad earns kudos from coaches
Our heroes of the week are the Soldotna High School cheerleading squad.

Community News
Safe Sitter classes offered National Guard hosts food drive Park updates Web site Reading carnival planned National Guard hosts food drive Park updates Web site Reading carnival planned

Births
Jessene (Kuiper) Wangaard and Kjell Wangaard of Evergreen, Colo., announce the birth of their daughter, Teagan Aibhilin Avery Wangaard.

Around the Peninsula
Trails association meeting set Women voters plan luncheon Multiple sclerosis group to meet CPGH board meeting slated Christmas bazaar set Flu vaccine still available Christmas trees available on refuge

Peninsula People
Rotary club vocational service award presented Miller inducted into honor society

Around the Peninsula
Aviation training center opensT-200 poster contest deadline WednesdayChristmas tree lighting plannedKWF to host open houseFord to perform at libraryCaregiver support group to meet'Toy and Joy' applications being accepted

Community Schools
Digital Camera Basic Winterize Your Hands Men's Basketball League

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.

Research: Celebrex pain reliever appears to be safer than Vioxx
PHILADELPHIA - New research suggests that top-selling pain reliever Celebrex does not carry the same heart attack risk as Vioxx, a similar drug pulled from the market in September because of safety concerns.

White also tricked by flaxseed oil
WASHINGTON (AP) - Sprinter Kelli White thought she was taking flaxseed oil when the former world champion first started using banned substances provided by Victor Conte.

Pac-10 commissioner wants coaches' votes public
WALNUT CREEK, Calif. - California coach Jeff Tedford and the commissioner of the Pac-10 Conference called for coaches to make their votes public after California was dropped below No. 6 by six voters in the final poll.

Kidd returns to lead Nets
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. - Jason Kidd made his season debut and assisted on Richard Jefferson's game-winning jumper from the lane with 7.1 seconds left as the New Jersey Nets defeated the Toronto Raptors 88-86 Monday night.

Richardson, Suns smoke 'Blazers
PORTLAND, Ore. Quentin Richardson made eight 3-pointers and scored 37 points to give the Phoenix Suns a 121-99 victory over the Portland Trail Blazers on Sunday night.

Another Mess
Now Auburn knows what it's like to be the odd team out a feeling Southern California knew only too well last year.

Yellow Jackets sting rival Georgia
ATLANTA B.J. Elder scored 19 points and Jarrett Jack added 18 to lead No. 4 Georgia Tech to an 87-49 victory over Georgia on Sunday night.

Illinois lives up to No. 1 ranking
CHAMPAIGN, Ill. - Luther Head scored 17 points and Dee Brown added 15 points and nine assists for Illinois, which celebrated its new No. 1 ranking with a 78-59 victory over Chicago State on Monday night.

Henley's desire pays off
For 2 1/2 months this fall, Kenai Central senior C.J. Henley and either his mother, Sherry, or his father, Charlie, drove to Anchorage nearly every day of the week so C.J. could play Midget A hockey with the Southcentral Wolves.

Singh caps season as PGA Tour's best
Vijay Singh made sure there was no debate about who was No. 1 in golf.

Gleason regrets punch
NEW ORLEANS - Saints special teams captain Steve Gleason expects to be fined by the league after being ejected from Sunday's game against the Carolina Panthers for throwing a punch.

Julius rules Seattle
SEATTLE - Julius Jones flashed through the line, juked a defender and zipped into the end zone.

Indy racing
INDIANAPOLIS Peyton Manning threw three touchdown passes, Edgerrin James ran for two more scores and Indianapolis returned a blocked field goal for another TD as the Colts routed Tennessee 51-24 Sunday and moved closer to clinching the AFC South.

Tillman died in a confusion of friendly fire
WASHINGTON (AP) The last minutes of Pat Tillman's life were a horror of misdirected machine-gun fire and signals to firing colleagues that were misunderstood as hostile acts, according to an account published Sunday of the death of the NFL player-turned-soldier.

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