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Friday, December 13, 2002

Anchorage seeks surge in visitors in December
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Meetings and conventions in Anchorage during December will bring in more than $2.5 million in economic impact, according to an estimate by the Anchorage Convention & Visitors Bureau.

Alaska gets customized topographic map machine
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- With a few taps on a touch screen, a machine at the Alaska Public Lands Information Center will print out customized topographic maps on tear-resistant waterproof paper.

Sitka black-tailed deer spotted in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A Sitka blacktailed deer was reported bounding across the road this week in what was apparently the first modern sighting in Anchorage.

Police investigate allegations teacher assaulted student
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Anchorage police and Anchorage School District officials are investigating an allegation that an award-winning fourth-grade teacher assaulted a child during a field trip last week, school officials said Thursday.

Court lifts injunction to law barring forest development
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) -- A federal appeals court on Thursday lifted an injunction that suspended the Clinton administration's ''roadless rule,'' which banned logging and road construction on a third of national forest lands.

Nenana school district seeks help with payment
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Faced with a drop in funding from the state the Nenana City School District has asked the city to make the next two payments on the district's high school boarding home.

Truck driver tests sober after Seward Highway crash
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A truck driver involved in a wreck on the Seward Highway that killed five people in a prison van had not been drinking before the crash, Alaska State Troopers said.

Six saved from gas poisoning by alert dispatcher
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Six people, including three children, were rescued early Thursday morning after a 911 dispatcher realized a caller and her family were suffering carbon monoxide poisoning.

Murkowski orders road maintenance to continue
JUNEAU (AP) -- Gov. Frank Murkowski directed state transportation officials to continue highway and aviation maintenance at last year's levels on Wednesday.

Sterling man arrested on sex abuse charges
STERLING (AP) -- A man from Sterling has been arrested on charges of sexual abuse of a minor.

UAS plan to cover Ketchikan mural sparks reaction
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- The University of Alaska Southeast plans to demolish a 24-year-old mural painted by Native students on one of its buildings as part of a remodeling project and some residents are not happy with the decision.

State got $17 million in federal grants to fight crime
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska received $17 million in federal grants this year to combat crime.

FEMA provides grant money to fight terrorism
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska will receive nearly a half-million dollars to better prepare state and local governments to fight terrorism, officials with the Federal Emergency Management Agency said Thursday.

Haines man killed in fatal fire in Thorne Bay
THORNE BAY (AP) -- A Haines man is dead after a trailer fire Thursday night in Thorne Bay.

Murkowski mulls judicial appointments
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- The Alaska Judicial Council has sent Gov. Frank Murkowski five nominees from which to choose his first two judicial appointments.

Williams still looks for buyer of Alaska assets
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Williams Cos. has found a buyer for its Memphis refinery, but its North Pole and Alaska properties are still unclaimed.

Plan caps fishing on Karluk River
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- An Alaska Native regional corporation and the federal government have reached an agreement for a 10-year conservation easement allowing limited public access to the Karluk River.

Man charged with kidnapping ex-girlfriend
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- An Anchorage man has been arrested on charges of kidnapping and choking his 17-year-old former girlfriend, according to police.

Defendants ask to withdraw plea in murder-for-hire case
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Two Anchorage defendants accused of trying to hire a hit man to kill a federal judge and prosecutor have asked a U.S. district judge to withdraw their guilty pleas.

Anchorage police identify woman killed by car
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- A pedestrian killed Nov. 27 has been identified by Anchorage police.

Barton tapped to be acting transportation commissioner
JUNEAU (AP) -- Retired state transportation Commissioner Mike Barton was picked to temporarily head up the state Department of Transportation and Public Facilities on Wednesday.

Wards Cove plans to shutter fish processing plants
JUNEAU (AP) -- One of Alaska's oldest and largest fish processing companies, Wards Cove Packing Co., announced Thursday it is halting its salmon operations after 75 years.

Man rescued after apparent suicide attempt
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Two Alaska State Troopers rescued a man Wednesday morning who apparently tried to hang himself.

Virus hits Ketchikan
KETCHIKAN (AP) -- Ketchikan is experiencing an outbreak of a Norwalk or Norwalk-like virus and state health officials are asking for the public's help to slow its virus spread.

Murkowski vacationing in Houston before stop in D.C
FAIRBANKS (AP) -- Gov. Frank Murkowski will spend three days in Houston visiting with friends, some of whom are in the energy industry, a press spokesman said.

Hit king should be enshrined
America forgave Richard Nixon, George Steinbrenner pardoned Billy Martin, and Marge Simpson let Homer back in the house at least a thousand times.

Holidays elicit good will toward needy men, women and children
NEW YORK (AP) -- For many Americans, the holidays are a time of giving to family and friends -- and to needy people they might never know.

When it comes to retirement, there are things more important than money
NEW YORK (AP) -- Annie Gullion retired from her job as a social worker in 1991, and her life since then has been anything but sedentary.

Celebrants say the festive spirit worth the cost of holiday lighting
'Tis the season to decorate with lights. For this reason, many homes and businesses are decorated with colorful lights to celebrate the holidays. Some of the light displays are elaborate. Others are more simple.

North Star to be sold to UHS
Universal Health Systems Inc. of King of Prussia, Pa. announced Nov. 25 that it plans to buy Anchorage-based North Star Behavioral Health System.

United Airlines' employee stock ownership program doomed from start
NEW YORK (AP) -- United Airlines didn't have a chance.

Mail-order dos and don'ts
The Christmas holiday is just around the corner and many gift-givers turn to catalogs as a convenient, timesaving way to shop from home. The Better Business Bureau once again offers tips on buying by mail.

Native American Bank looks to enter Alaska
ANCHORAGE -- Bank executive John Beirise couldn't go along with the ''acquire and fire'' mentality that gripped the banking industry in the mid-1990s, so he launched off on his own.

Business Briefs
Era helps local food banksBusiness Web development workshop offered

Fines for corporate wrongs not tough enough
NEW YORK (AP) -- Remember all that talk about coming down hard on corporate misdeeds? Maybe it was only talk.

Watercooler
OFFICE PARTY PITFALLS: Ah, the office holiday party, when co-workers gather to celebrate the season together! But amid the chicken wings and egg nog, there are legal pitfalls aplenty that employers should consider.

Native groups study federal service delivery
ANCHORAGE (AP) -- Alaska Native groups are working to find ways to streamline and economize the delivery of federal services to the state's 229 federally recognized tribes.

One-stop shopping for all your holiday gifts
(NAPSI)-This holiday season, give yourself the gift of easy holiday shopping.

One out of four holiday shoppers report serious knee pain
(NAPSI)-The holiday season can be a real pain in the neck, knees, legs, and back for people with osteoarthritis (OA). In fact, a recent survey

Charitable Gifts Recover The Spirit of the Season
(NUI) - My family celebrates, in a major way, any chance we get. So the holidays are a favorite time of year for us, bringing excitement and anticipation, but also the stress that comes with these hectic days.

Homemade Gifts That Fit Your Budget
(NUI) - Some people go to the store for holiday gifts. Linda Carucci goes to the kitchen.

Delightful Ways To Deck The Halls
(NAPSI)-While you're enjoying the sights and lights of the holiday season, you may care to consider the past and present form some traditions may take.

Cut out your search for hand-made holiday decorations
(NAPSI)-The holiday season is jam-packed with lights, gifts and especially decorations. Now there's a do-it-yourself option that allows you to create decorations that are flexible, customizable and inexpensive. All you need is a computer, a jigsaw and a little creativity.

Creating an extraordinary buffet with rich, flavorful bread
(NAPSI)-Few things can make a holiday table more festive than serving a holiday bread.

Make The Most Of Your Holidays: Holiday shopping: quick tips to save money in minutes
(NAPSI)-With holidays quickly approaching, it's never too late to think about creative ways to save money. By pinching some pennies now, rather than after the holidays, you can start 2003 off on the right foot.

You can wing it with gifts for bird lovers
(NAPSI)-If you know someone whose heart flutters fondly at the thought of birds, giving gifts may be simple and fun this season.

How to make the most of a short shopping season
(NAPSI)-With only 26 days between Black Friday and Christmas, the official holiday shopping season is shorter than ever this year.

Hosting a great party this year
(NAPSI)-The holiday season means hosting and attending more parties. A few simple tips offered by the creators of "The Great Party Guide" can help ensure it's a fun and memorable time for everyone.

How to survive hectic office and holiday parties this year
(NAPSI)-Office and other holiday parties don't have to be a painful obligation, nor should they become so much fun that your reputation is jeopardized. Follow this simple holiday party survival guide:

Celebrating Christmas "Down-Under" style
(NAPSI)-An Australian Christmas feast, while not normally kangaroo and vegamite, is decidedly different from the tradition

Showing friends you care: friendship tips for hectic holidays
(NAPSI)-The holiday season brings about a desire to share the fun and festivity of the holidays with good friends.

Helping is the greatest holiday gift you can give to others
(NAPSI)-Many people find that it can be a struggle to see beyond the commercialism of the season to find the joy and fulfillment that lie at the heart of the holidays.

Tips To Make Your Fte A Feat
(NAPSI)-Whether your merrymaking guests are hundreds of clients and coworkers expecting champagne and foie gras, or a cluster of out-of-town relatives expecting some eggnog and an air mattress, your evening ought to sparkle.

Celebrating on a budget
(NAPS)-When trying to get the most value for your holiday dollar, look at a product's durability, not just its cost. Items that last are the ones that provide the best value.

Spending more meaningful time with children throughout the year
(NAPSI)-In the 21st century, family dynamics have changed. Now more than ever, we must commit ourselves to the needs of the country's children.

A Blooming Bouquet Of Creative Gift Ideas
(NAPSI)-One gift idea growing in popularity this holiday season is blooming bulbs. Baskets, planters and floral displays with blooming bulbs are a gift that can brighten spirits during the colder months.

Renowned party planner shares hottest entertaining trends
(NAPSI)-The holidays bring family and friends together to enjoy good company, good conversation and great food and drinks.

The hottest toys of 2002
(NAPSI)-Finding the right gift for the kids on your shopping list can be more like child's play if you know how to select toys that elicit, "Oh wow!" instead of, "what now?"

Eat Healthy During the Holiday Celebrations
(NAPSI)-Are you anxious about maintaining a healthy diet during the upcoming holiday festivities? The Cancer Research Foundation of America (CRFA) offers a few healthy eating tips for all those special occasions. A well-balanced diet and exercise can reduce your risk of cancer and other health problems!

Send holiday greetings that support the fight against breast cancer
(NAPSI)-Millions of greeting cards filled with messages of love, joy and peace will be sent this holiday season.

Politeness Among Americans on the Rise
(NUI) - Americans are more courteous and thoughtful than ever, according to a recent survey that tracks trends in etiquette and gift giving.

Houston faces career test
NEW YORK -- Whitney Houston, who released her first album in four years this week, has succeeded in getting the public's attention -- but not for her music.

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

Exhibit looks at history of black photography
ATLANTA -- In the early days of the Civil Rights movement, photojournalist Moneta Sleet Jr. took hundreds of pictures while covering a then-unknown minister, the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., for Ebony magazine.

Photographers capture different areas of Alaska
If the word "tundra" conjures up only images of a stark, wind-swept frozen wasteland, then the Kenai Visitors and Cultural Center has a photography exhibit on display that will radically expand the horizons of what most people think of as the landscape of the far north.

Jackson awaiting last of 'Rings' trilogy
NEW YORK -- Peter Jackson's middle movie may suffer a severe case of middle-child syndrome.

Art Briefs
Poetry contest announcedKPC magazine accepting submissionsLast Frontier conference accepting plays

Drivers awarded with millions
ATLANTA -- Bill Elliott was the first driver in NASCAR Winston Cup Series history to win more than $1 million in a single season. But his $2.4 million effort in 1985 now seems like chump change.

2003 Schedule
February 9 to November 16, 2003

NASCAR getting far too expensive for its own good
ATLANTA -- Although Tony Stewart had the worst finishing average of any champion since the NASCAR Winston Cup Series went to the points system in 1975, he still managed to win more than $9.16 million last season.

Reaching young fans
NASCAR president Mike Helton (center) is accompanied by employees of Burroughs and Chapin Construction Co. during groundbreaking ceremonies

'Flower streets' may get paved
Soldotna's so-called "flower streets" may soon be getting a new look.

Residents think way back before recalling winter similar to this one
Older folks at senior citizen centers from Sterling to Nikiski don't recall a winter as mild as this on the Kenai Peninsula and many are appreciative of the fresh covering of snow the area started receiving Wednesday.

Low-cost health care answers area need
People with a stomach ache and little cash in their pockets have a choice of where to go for low-cost health care on the central Kenai Peninsula.

Forming alliances: Group looks at education options
There's a new force in town working to enhance education for Kenai Peninsula students.

Photo feature: Iluminated view
The moon rises above Hidden Lake (foreground), Skilak Lake and the Kenai Mountains shortly after sunset earlier this week.

Driver manual provides tips for accident safety
What do you do if you're the first one on the scene of an accident with injuries? What if you hit a moose or someone's pet dog or cat?

Kenai offers advice to incoming administration
When Gov. Frank Murkowski begins making state policy decisions, he'll do so having received plenty of input from communities around the state.

Organizers vow to open doors on time, despite uncertainty over initial funding
No longer will there be the need to travel north or south for dental care. Underinsured and uninsured dental care will become a reality in the central Kenai Peninsula.

Assembly scraps sales tax revision
Charter operators got what they wanted Tuesday when the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly tossed out proposed changes to the way fish guides charge their customers borough and city sales taxes.

Betty Karsten
Soldotna resident Betty Karsten died Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2002, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. She was 88.

Helene A. Hatfield
Kenai resident Helene A. Hatfield died Tuesday, Dec. 10, 2002, at Central Peninsula General Hospital from a long battle with cancer. She was 63.

Oilers sign freshman all-American Oilers Corner
Loyola Marymount University sophomore outfielder Joe Frazee has signed with the Oilers for the 2003 Alaska Baseball League season. Named to

Government not doing enough to protect borders
Arizona border residents are so weary of illegal aliens hoofing through local properties that they plan to station armed members on public land this weekend to stop them from crossing the border from Mexico.

Letters to the Editor
Vocational education a valuable resource for students, communit Cab driver saved lives by stopping intoxicated driver outside bar

Bush presidency will hinge on economy
After whistling past the midterm elections, the Bush administration is shaking up its economic team in the face of lagging growth and increasing joblessness.

New Barbie sends ugly message
The Bratz doll toy package trumpets proudly: Toy of the Year. Chosen by whom? Penthouse?

Letters to the Editor
Government officials, wealthy deny health care access to others

Applause
Those who supported academic awards banquet deserve high marksRedoubt PTA raises funds with help from numerous community donorsVolunteers help make Soldotna tree lighting a glowing success

Pyongyang's policies only serve to hurt North Korea's impoverished people
WASHINGTON -- The onset of winter may seem an inopportune time for the United States to stop shipping sorely needed heavy oil to North Korea, where temperatures of 20 below zero are routine at this time of year.

Alaska gets topographic map machine
ANCHORAGE -- With a few taps on a touch screen, a machine at the Alaska Public Lands Information Center will print out customized topographic maps on tear-resistant waterproof paper.

Finding the perfect tree part of the holiday fun
Christmas is rapidly approaching, and for many folks, the holidays just don't feel right without a nice, green tree dressing up the household.

Outdoor Briefs
State Parks passes for 2003 now available Winter king salmon plans to take effect Dec. 29 Subsistence Board seeking comment

Delayed dusting
Brittany Adams struggles to keep up with Kevin McGee and his dog Bear as they skijor on Wednesday's fresh snow near Redoubt Avenue in Kenai.

Oral history project documents interesting past of refuge and peninsula
You know you're getting old when you get asked to be interviewed for a Kenai Peninsula and National Wildlife Refuge oral history project.

Around the Peninsula
Power outage under investigationPierce to speak at North Peninsula chamberIndustry Outreach plans speakerFolk dancers to host contra danceHospital changes meeting dateCES participating in food collectionHospice offers carols for donationChristmas food drive under wayExtension service to offer gardening classLabor department offers disaster assistance

Indians aim to form cohesive plan to protect sacred lands
INDIAN PASS WILDERNESS, Calif. (AP) -- A faint footpath threads through volcanic rock and glittering quartz near the Colorado River -- desolate land considered sacred by the Quechan Nation and profitable by a Nevada gold mining company.

African Methodist churches using $12.6 million grant for exercise programs
COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Members of African Methodist Episcopal Church congregations in South Carolina will benefit from a three-year, $12.6 million grant for exercise programs through an unusual project.

Franklin Graham remaking father's ministry with activist emphasis
BOONE, N.C. (AP) -- He's no Billy Graham -- and Franklin Graham, son of the world's most famous evangelist, says that doesn't bother him a bit.

Controversial Catholic radio station in Poland files for TV license
WARSAW, Poland (AP) -- Poland's controversial Roman Catholic radio station has filed with authorities to launch a satellite TV channel, the head of the nation's broadcasting board said Sunday.

Baptist church stages Texas-sized Christmas pageant
PLANO, Texas (AP) -- In a state where everything seems bigger, a Baptist church is staging a Christmas pageant that is pure Texas-sized.

Episcopal Church questions plan to move headquarters to seminary campus
NEW YORK (AP) -- The Episcopal Church appears ready to kill its plan to move denominational headquarters across town to the campus of General Theological Seminary.

Adding 'special ingredients' makes Christmas memorable
Something everyone seems to take special joy in around the holidays are the special goodies that no doubt make us fat but taste so wonderful. Often these are not too different from things we might enjoy all year around, but have extra "special ingredients."

Indiana Nativity scene goes on wheels to skirt government ban
LAFAYETTE, Ind. (AP) -- Ever since a Nativity scene was banished from the courthouse grounds by Tippecanoe County commissioners in 1999, Jack Ruckel has marked Christmas by putting a portable manager display on his pickup truck and parking it outside the building.

Religion Briefs
Christmas musical tonight Native fellowship to meet Holiday kids program planned Singles conference slated Christmas musical presented Jesus birth celebrated Clothing ministry open Potluck and musical planned Healing Rooms open Friendship closet open Wednesdays Precept Ministries training institute planned Writers sought for faith anthology

Yeshiva University chooses a non-rabbi as president for the first time
NEW YORK (AP) -- Yeshiva University has chosen the president of Hillel, the organization for Jewish college students, to be its president starting next June. Richard M. Joel will be the first non-rabbi in the post.

Massachusetts Episcopal bishops say Vatican comments could spur anti-gay hate crimes
BOSTON (AP) -- Two Episcopal bishops say that anti-gay comments from the Vatican could lead to hate crimes in the United States.

No. 20 Kansas hands Tulsa its first defeat
TULSA, Okla. -- Nick Collison had 26 points and 12 rebounds as 20th-ranked Kansas handed No. 17 Tulsa its first loss this season, beating the Golden Hurricane 89-80 Wednesday night.

Canucks get three goals to top Avalanche
VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Brendan Morrison and Daniel Sedin scored power-play goals and the Vancouver Canucks overcame Joe Sakic's 500th career goal to beat the Colorado Avalanche 3-1 Wednesday night.

Sizzling Senators nudge closer to Bruins
BOSTON -- Todd White scored a short-handed goal and assisted on another score that keyed Ottawa's four-goal second period Thursday night as the Senators sent the Boston Bruins to consecutive losses for the first time this season with a 5-2 victory.

High school phenom ready for national stage
CLEVELAND -- Tighten the laces on your sneakers, America. LeBronmania is finally going prime time.

Heisman finalists include two 'Canes
NEW YORK -- Top-ranked Miami's Ken Dorsey and Willis McGahee are Heisman Trophy finalists, the first time since 1994 that teammates were among the top five in the voting.

Sonics snap 76ers' 10-game home winning streak
PHILADELPHIA -- Brent Barry sank a 3-pointer and Gary Payton made two free throws in the final 23 seconds to lift the Seattle Supersonics to a 92-88 comeback win over the Philadelphia 76ers on Wednesday night, snapping the Sixers' 10-game home winning streak.

Nikiski, Seward set for state wrestling meet
The last time the Alaska School Activities Association sponsored a Class 1-2-3A state wrestling championship, in December 1999, the Nikiski High School squad entered the meet as the four-time defending champion, only to be upset by archrival Seward.

Suggs wins Lombardi Award
HOUSTON (AP) -- Arizona State defensive end Terrell Suggs, who set an NCAA record with 22 sacks this season, won the Lombardi Award on Wednesday night as the nation's top collegiate lineman.

Sports Briefs
Favre says he's sorry for obscene gestureGuilty pleas set to end prosecution in scamsOneWorld ties Prada 1-1; Alinghi beats OracleGebrselassie sets world best for road 10,000 metersReports: NFL cites poor officiating in Vikings' lossMorriss pledges commitment to winning at BaylorKent wants to return to Giants

Banks draws on strong family ties
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- Brad Banks was among the fortunate.

Nation gets first glance of James
CLEVELAND -- LeBron James didn't try to put on a one-man show. He did anyway.

Wasilla freezes Nikiski
The Kenai Central High School hockey team dug itself a hole and was unable to climb out, dropping a 5-2 nonconference decision to the visiting Houston Hawks Thursday at the Soldotna Sports Center.

Panthers take down SoHi in dual meet
Soldotna wrestling coach Sarge Truesdell wrestled under Skyview coach Neldon Gardner. The two coaches also work together at Soldotna Middle School. Thus, there were no secrets heading into Thursday's dual meet between the rival Panthers and Stars.

Penn State's Johnson nabs pair of awards
LAKE BUENA VISTA, Fla. (AP) -- Penn State's Larry Johnson ran away with the Maxwell and Doak Walker awards Thursday night during the college football awards show.

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