Monday, December 17, 2007

Council dog decision applauded
I would like to congratulate the Kenai City Council on their recent decision to not expand their kennel licensing rules. Since the program has registered only eight households, it makes me wonder how many more households with more than three dogs made the wise decision to not let the city know and allow it to intrude upon their lives.

Ninilchik derby a success
The Deep Creek Charterboat Association would like to graciously thank our co-sponsors of the 2007 Ninilchik Fishing Derby, including Ninilchik Chamber of Commerce, Canterwood Cabins, Wells Fargo Bank (Soldotna), Best Western King Salmon Motel, Deep Creek Sport Shop, Koffler Boats Inc., Will's Copper King Charters, Afishunt Charters, Alaska USA Federal Credit Union, American Legion Post No. 18, Anglers Lodge, Arctic Tern Charters, Catch-A-Lot Charters, Chihuly's Charters, Chinook Tesoro, Don T. Fishing Charters, Fred Meyer, D&M Charters, Fishward Bound Adventures, Happy Valley Hookers, Happy Valley Store, Joyce Marie Charters, Kachemak Gear Shed, Meander-In B&B, Ninilchik Saltwater Charters, Printers Ink (Peninsula Clarion), Scenic View RV Park and The Cross Enterprises.

All learning is challenging
In response to Dec. 9 editorial, "Far-reaching Inspiration Found Close to Home," I commend the Challenger Learning Center for awakening people's interest in science, math and computers. Another way to spur our youth to advanced degrees is to consider how these subjects are being portrayed.

Pilots to see ABCs in order
Pilots tooling around Soldotna Municipal Airport next summer will find order has been restored to the taxiway designation system, thanks to action taken last week by the city council.

CPH says farewell
Laughter floated amongst the crowd in the Denali Conference Room at Central Peninsula Hospital on Sunday and tears trickled down the cheeks of friends, family, coworkers and the community that gathered to say goodbye to flight nurse John Stumpff, pilot Lance Brabham, paramedic Cameron Carter and patient Gaye McDowell.

KRSMA forms committees to tackle Kenai River issues
The Kenai River Special Management Area Advisory Board formed several separate committees in order to come up with a comprehensive plan for the Kenai River on issues ranging from land and recreational use to permitting, legislation and habitat conservation, but Richard Hahn said more had to be done to manage the river.

Kenai quilters stitch together hope for foster children
SOLDOTNA For Kenai Peninsula quilters, leftover scraps of fabric provide the foundation for one-of-a-kind keepsakes children living in foster care can call their own.

Great Aluminum Can Roundup in full swing
When last year's Great Aluminum Can Roundup came to a close, Kenai Peninsula kids accumulated a total of 4,428 pounds of aluminum. At approximately 21 cents a pound, these kids turned more than two tons of soda cans into $929.88, money that went back the kids.

Borough responds to ACT motions
The Kenai Peninsula Borough attorney's office filed papers Thursday seeking a summary judgment from the Kenai Superior Court that the borough assembly acted within the law earlier this year when it voted to increase the sales tax rate to 3 percent effective Jan. 1.

Photo feature: Remembrance
Firefighters from numerous Southcentral Alaska departments march down Kobuk Street in a processional honoring Central Emergency Services firefighter Cameron Carter on Saturday afternoon. Carter was one of four victims of a LifeGuard helicopter crash in Prince William Sound earlier this month. At right, Mikala and Michelle Smith were among the many mourners who lined the route, which went from CES Station 1 to Soldotna Bible Chapel on Marydale Avenue. A memorial service for the four people lost in the crash, pilot Lance Brabham of Soldotna, flight nurse John Stumpff of Sterling, Carter, who worked for LifeGuard when not on duty with CES, and patient Gaye McDowell of Cordova, will be held at 1:30 p.m. today in the Denali Conference Center at Central Peninsula Hospital.

Pratt seeks community input for future exhibits
The Pratt Museum is dedicated to the process of education by exploring the natural environment and human experience relative to the southern Kenai Peninsula, and they are currently opening a dialogue with the community about which direction the museum should go with its special exhibits in the near future.

Hope erodes
Army engineers and biologists came to town last week to talk about the Kenai bluff.

Charles Dennis Martin
Longtime Ninilchik resident Charles Dennis Martin died Sunday, Dec. 9, 2007 at his home in Ninilchik. He was 54.

Geneva May Ramsey
Longtime Soldotna and Sterling resident Geneva May Ramsey died Saturday, Dec. 15, 2007, at home. She was 92.

Clarion changes are something to laugh about
With as much bad news as there is in the world today war, shootings, global warming, earthquakes, etc. it's truly important to make time find things that make us laugh.

Christmas will be different: Quiet conversations just as good for those returning home
I suspect Christmas will be different for hundreds of Alaskans this year very different.

Nikiski Community News
Seasons greetings and happy winter Solstice to all of my Nikiski neighbors. I am excited that the shortest day of the year is Saturday and then we will again be gaining light.

Warming Words
Long nights and cold temperatures outside make winter an ideal time to stay inside and curl up with a good book.

Sterling Community News
I don't know about all of you, but I am beginning to wonder where our winter has gone! At the risk of sounding like an "old-timer," Decembers when I was a child seemed to be, well, more winter-like. They featured things like skiing and sledding. This year we seem to be missing one vital ingredient for those activities snow. Hopefully by the time this article runs we will have some of the fluffy white stuff.

Around the Peninsula
CPCS board meeting set Women's basketball league forming Free gift wrapping offered KMS volleyball camp set Canine Good Citizen class planned Cameras, photo printers sought Kids reading program continues Donations sought for military personnel

Kenai Community News
Recent visitors at the Hank and Toni Cooper home were their son, Sgt. Corey Jon Cooper, his wife, Malinda, and their daughter, Zoya Roze, 1. Corey recently returned from a 15-month tour of duty in Iraq for the U.S. Army. He is stationed in Fort Lewis, Wash. This was his second tour in Iraq in three years. While he was gone, his parents became experts in supporting their special soldier. Toni said, "There's only so much parents can do. So I decided I would write him a letter every Monday, send him a package every Friday, and then leave the rest to the Lord."

Kasilof Community News
The Tustumena Elementary School parent-teacher organization (PTO) cash raffle was pulled off Dec. 8. Audrey Russell and Shelley Davis drew tickets while Jim Russell (Audrey's brother-in-law) was the announcer. Sheila Garrant, president of the PTO, taped the tickets to the display. She breathed a sigh of relief when all tickets were accounted for again this year. Janet Gleason, a Soldotna resident and registered nurse at Central Peninsula Hospital, won the $2,500 grand prize. TJ Checketts, son of Shane and Tosha Checketts of Tustumena Lake Road, sold the winning ticket. Demery Garrant sold the most tickets, for which she won a digital Kodak camera pack. Rachael Blossom and Myia Wright sold the second- and third-most tickets. Every year 400 tickets are printed and this year 382 sold, the most ever. The raffle started in 1999 when Lisa Stroh was principal and Judy Johnson was PTO president.

Ninilchik Community News
I attended Nick Leman's 90th birthday party at the Ninilchik Senior Citizen's Center with friends and relatives of the Leman family Dec 7. Nick's son, Loren Leman, arranged it so his older brother Wayne could fly in from Washington and surprise his parents. Youngest son Mark, who works as a merchant marine and recently returned from Japan, was also able to attend, enabling all three of Nick and Marian's sons to celebrate this special occasion together.

Soldotna Community News
Many of the Christmas customs we hold dear, such as the Christmas tree, originated in Germany. For a touch of an authentic German Christmas, Dagmar Mayer, originally from the beautiful town of Bamberg, Germany, shares some of her memories and traditions, new and old.

Unhinged Alaska
Dear Santa,

Around the Peninsula
SoHi Class of '88 seeks information Raffle fundraiser continues Counseling association seeks members CPHC board to meet KCHS hockey memorabilia sought Women's basketball league forming T-200 poster contest begins

Swimming wonders
Members of the Soldotna Silver Salmon swim team pose together during the 2007 Speedo/Alaska Swimming Age-Group Championships at the Hamme Swimming Pool in Fairbanks on Dec. 7. Team members included Alexandra Brenton, Shaylee Brenton, Morgan Lancaster, Megan English, Katie Markesano, Kaitlyn Groleske, Sarah Mokracek, Zoya Hanson, Alena Newgren, Keelyn Heaven, Olivia Pfeifer, Molly Silta, Maraya Whitaker, Sawyer Rickman, Christain Carrico, Austin Whitaker, Winter Heaven and Ehren Rickman. Not pictured, Rachel Henry and Isabel Henry. The team is coached by Sohail Marey and assisted by Joel Pieper. Standing with the team, second from right, is Mark Gangloff a gold medalist for the USA team in 2004. Gangloff presented medals at the event. The team competed against 330 swimmers and placed ninth out of 20 teams. Individual results for those placing in the top six are: Kaitlyn Groleske fourth place for backstroke, butterfly, individual medley and freestyle, third place in freestyle and backstroke and fifth place freestyle. She placed eighth overall; Molly Silta fifth place butterfly; Katie Markesano fifth place butterfly; Sawyer Rickman fifth place backstroke and fourth place freestyle; Olivia Pfeifer two fifth place finishes for freestyle and fifth place backstroke; Austin Whitaker sixth place breaststroke; and Winter Heaven first place backstroke and butterfly, second place individual medley and freestyle, third place individual medley and backstroke and fifth place butterfly. He placed third overall. Relay results are: fourth place freestyle, girls ages 11 and 12 Morgan, Katie, Zoya and Kaitlyn and fifth place freestyle boys ages 13 and 14 Ehren, Christian, Austin and Winter; Medley sixth place girls are 11 and 12 Kaitlyn, Katie, Sarah and Zoya and medley sixth place boys ages 13 and 14 Ehren, Christian, Austin and Winter; and freestyle sixth place girls ages 11 and 12 Kaitlyn, Katie, Sarah and Zoya and freestyle boys ages 13 and 14 Ehren, Christian, Austin and Winter.

Peninsula Reflections
A few years ago, members of the Kenai Historical Society took turns telling about their first Christmas in Alaska. Excerpts from some of the stories follow.

Pet Photo: Best Friend
Noel, a 3-year old Pomeranian who belongs to David Henson and family in Soldotna, was given to David's daughter Mariah as a gift for Christmas in 2004. "The picture was taken over Thanksgiving weekend when we were putting up Christmas Decorations and our son, Chet, decided to put her in the sleigh that normally holds a holiday stuffed animal. She is our precious princess. So dainty, in fact, she wipes her feet on the map when she comes in from outside."

Baker earns state crown
Soldotna's Les Baker thought it was impossible.

Kardinals take Tip-Off crown
Only three games are in the books, but Kenai Central boys basketball head coach Jim Beeson knows one thing about his team.

Sitka boys take 3rd
The Sitka boys basketball team grabbed a 19-10 lead on Skyview after the first quarter and never looked back on Saturday in claiming a 76-51 victory in the third-place game at the Soldotna Tipoff Tournament.

Sports Brief
The Homer boy basketball team finished 1-2 at the Grace Christian Classic after splitting games on Friday and Saturday.

Sports Brief
The Ninilchik girls basketball team opened their season by defeating Galena 39-37 on Saturday at Lumen Christi in Anchorage.

Still going
The girls teams in the Peninsula Conference will no longer have to worry about Lemans on the basketball floor. They still have to worry about a Leman on the sideline.

Soldotna skaters jet past Houston
The Soldotna hockey team received a hat trick in the third period from Anton Olson to defeat Houston in nonconference action at the Soldotna Sports Center on Friday.

Ninilchik senior Austin Vanderford and Seward senior Brandon O'Brikis earned championships at the Class 1-2-3A state wrestling championships on Saturday at Mt. Edgecumbe in Sitka.

Skiers finally get a meet
After a frustrating early season of little snow, the Kenai Peninsula's ski teams finally got a meet done on Saturday in the Homer "Last Chance" Nordic Ski Meet at the hayfields at Lookout Mountain.

SoHi girls cruise to Challenge title
The Soldotna girls basketball team has yet to play a game in the Northern Lights Conference this season, but the Peninsula Challenge at Skyview showed the Southern Division of the league already has some catching up to do.

Hakkinen continues to struggle with shooting
Kasilof biathlete Jay Hakkinen took 71st in a World Cup 10-kilometer sprint on Saturday at Pokljuka, Slovenia. Hakkinen continued to struggle with his shooting, accumulating five penalties.

Russell and Dyanna Hicks celebrate 50 years
Russell and Dyanna (Heer) Hicks of Anchorage were married 50 years ago on Dec. 12, 1957. They were married at Ocean View Church in Anchorage.

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