Tuesday, December 27, 2005

Kenai Borough Mayor Williams celebrates Inaugural at Challenger Center...
When John Williams was mayor of the City of Kenai he spearheaded a team that went against all odds to bring a Challenger Learning Center to Alaska. The Challenger Center was the site where newly elected Kenai Peninsula Borough Mayor John Williams chose to celebrate his new office last week. “These projects that we put together are truly for the benefit of the entire community, and just as I did when I was Mayor of the City, I expect to operate the same way at the Borough. This is an exciting and very busy time to become Borough Mayor,” said Williams.

New ideas for an idea contest...
During the holiday vacation many Kenai Peninsula High School students will be making use of their time out of the classroom to put some work into their ideas and projects for the coming Caring For The Kenai (CFK) contest. Now its 16th year the environmental awareness competition sponsored by Agrium and Chevron/Unocal Alaska through the Kenai Watershed Forum challenges area high school students to respond to the prompt ,”What can I do, invent, or create to better care for the environment on the Kenai Peninsula, or to improve the area’s preparedness for a natural disaster?” Annually some 500 students submit proposals for cash awards and scholarships.

Laser Technology to help you keep that New Year’s resolution...
If once again you are going to put “stop smoking!” at the top of your New Year’s resolution list, you might stop by the Anne Penman Laser Therapy Stop Smoking and Weight Loss Center on the Kenai Spur Highway in Soldotna. Michael Joy and his daughter Tricia Sadler opened the Center in September and are having great results. “This is a smoking cessation program that uses a soft laser applied to specific meridian points which stimulate the production of endorphins which are natural chemical suppressors produced by your body and the increased production of this chemical suppresses your urge for nicotine,” said Business manager Michael Joy. According to Joy the procedure has an effective rate of 65 to 70 percent.

Welcoming the world to the Kenai Peninsula
For many years Kenaitze tribe member Bunny Swan-Gease has been brightening the long Alaskan nights with holiday window art at local businesses and Doctors offices, Post Offices, Libraries, and the Kenai Airport. Her wintry scenes of snowmen and wildlife are painted free hand and in reverse in order to be seen from the outside. This year Bunny’s creation at the Kenai Airport is in honor of 2006 Arctic Winter Games to be hosted on the Kenai Peninsula the first week of March. The scene at the entrance of the terminal depicts the flags of the participating nations and Raven, the mascot of the Games standing as the welcoming sentinel, “In this setting Raven has the Canadian and the Alaskan flag and the other one is drumming along to welcome and inspire all the athletes that come here to do their best,” said Bunny.

‘Round about town during the holidays

One of the things I have leaned about hunting and fishing in Alaska is if you have the time and opportunities to do something don’t wait get doing it! Earlier this winter we had good ice on Kenai Lake and several of my fishing buddies caught some nice fish up there. Now due to warm weather, rain and wind the ice is gone. Unless we get another good cold spell the ice fishing on both Kenai Lake and Skilak might be done till next winter. It seems like there are a whole lot more years we can’t fish on our big lakes then we can.

NOW PLAYING: Christmas Vacation
Christmas vacation (the season, not the movie) can be a stressful time for a film critic. Obviously, there are a multitude of potential blockbusters and award winners at the theatre. All the studios, from big to small, pull out all the stops before Oscar season to maximize their chances to win. It’s great, but then again, most of the best films don’t actually come to your town. Ok - my town. And what about the relatives? Family commitments? Previous engagements? All that adds up to a few precious hours and either too many or too few choices to fill them with. What did I do? I went to see King Kong twice. I also upheld a Christmas family tradition by watching National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation. I bet I’m not alone.

Time to bring trust back to government
You have heard that saying, “Of the people, by the people, for the people?” Politicians turned it around. It now says — “Of the government, by the government, for the government.” Is this what America, our state and communities want? I hope for the good of our families, our children and their futures that our votes from here on will stop this trend.

Wal-Mart debate scores poorly
Gee whiz you guys. Would it be too much to ask that we all practice some civility and show some respect for others when composing our letters to the editor?

Dialogue sought from area spiritual leaders
The purpose of this letter is to open a dialogue with the spiritual leaders of our community and ask for their perspective on a complex issue. Often we hear that the influence of spiritual leaders is weaken in a society that has strong secular components. This is unfortunate as wisdom should come from all components of our society.

Woman needed protection from man with a violent past
In the Dec. 14, online issue of your Web paper, I read the article about Isabell Matthews. With great sadness, I realized, once again, how hard it is for a woman even in this day and age to have a life without fear of her life from being taken from her.

Bush not to blame for world’s woes
I’m glad to see the poll on the Iraq war came out in favor of staying in Iraq until the job is done. Here is a news flash, though. It will never be over, and we will never be able to leave the Middle East. People are trying to blame G.W. Bush for all the problems in the world. It’s not his fault. It wouldn’t matter who was president, people are going to (complain) about whoever is in the office. If it’s not people blaming Bush for the hurricanes in Louisiana, it’s people blaming him for all the other troubles in the world. God’s name is not G.W. Bush. He had nothing to do with the hurricanes.

No spying!
We must not allow the executive branch of the government to become investigator, policeman, judge and jury against American citizens. No spying on American citizens without a court order!

Reader: Protests inspire enemies
I’m writing this in support of Carol Kellers. I didn’t have the opportunity to read her letter (Clarion, Nov. 18), but the letters of Mr. Correia (Nov. 29) and Mr. Brookman (Dec. 8) gave a fair description.

Photo feature: White wipeout

Borough may give Soldotna land to build cemetery
A proposal to convey 10 acres of wooded borough-owned land not far from Redoubt Elementary School to the city of Soldotna for a future cemetery will get a public hearing at the Jan. 3 meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly.

Students spend Christmas at home before being commissioned in U.S. Army, Air Force
For one central Kenai Peninsula family, Christmas this year is something other than simply having the kids home from college.

Kenai fire, police departments treated to Christmas meal
While many enjoyed holiday meals with family and friends Sunday, not everyone did.

Up to speed: CES training recruits
A rash of recent retirements has tipped the ratio between experienced and new employees at Central Emergency Services.

Stores have happy holiday
Shelling out a few bucks for loved ones, friends, coworkers or people you don’t even like this holiday season? You’re not alone.

Home, not hospital for the holidays
Thanks to the kindness of strangers, 3-year-old Landon Rogers spent Christmas at home with his family in Kenai on Sunday.

James ‘Jim’ Steffy
Lifelong Soldotna resident, James “Jim” Steffy died Saturday, Dec. 24, 2005, at Providence Alaska Medical Center in Anchorage. He was 35.

Companies should stop price gouging, pay what they owe
Waiting for Exxon in the months following the Exxon-Valdez grounding, along with other concerned fishermen, I attended the daily meetings in Kodiak’s high school auditorium. I nursed my newborn daughter during those meetings in which the oil executives promised to make us whole. Now my daughter is finishing up her junior year in high school and browsing college catalogues. I continue to wait for Exxon to pay the fine awarded to affected fishermen and landowners in the 1994 jury trial. As I wait, the resurrected ANWR debate, the price-gouging testimony of the oil executives, and my recent $450 heating bill take me back to the broken promises made to us as bagged and tagged dead birds and animals accumulated in storage vans.

Around the Peninsula
Girl, boy alumni to play basketball Red Cross offers first aid classes Bone marrow, blood sought for pair MDA seeks awards nominations

Around the Peninsula
Hospital sets people on meditative path Kenai Elks to dance in New Year DEC gets cooking with food safety class Board to consider peninsula fishing

Club News
4-H club set to mush LeeShore community classes set Games, craft items sought Master gardeners take root

Beyond the call of duty

Animals in disaster: A preparedness checklist
If you’ve read this column before, then by now you know that disaster preparedness begins with a plan and a kit. If your “family” includes animals — whether it’s the family dog, a back-talking exotic bird, horses or a dog team — you need to make room for them in your plan and they’ll need their own disaster kit. Here are some suggested items for your animal’s disaster kit:

Peninsula kids shoot for success
Scores of area youth made free throws in the hopes of obtaining free money for college during the Soldotna Elks Club annual Hoop Shoot contest Dec. 17 at Soldotna Middle School.

Senior Activities
Kenai Soldotna Sterling

Senior Menus
Kenai Nikiski Ninilchik Soldotna

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