Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Kenai River Ice may cause property damage
With record cold during November the Kenai River froze over earlier than usual. Then with warming temperatures and heavy rain run off the river rose causing glacial build up along the banks where many docks and park facilities have been located. According to Soldotna City Manager Tom Boedeker, the ice above Soldotna Creek Park, Rotary Park, and Swift Water is already causing damage, “We have a lot of river pack ice that has built up around some of our walkways and platforms and some of them have already sustained some damage but it’ll be hard to know how extensive the damage is until the ice goes out in the Spring, and then we’ll need to be watching to see that some of the sections that are already broken loose don’t go out with the ice flows. We’ll probably have to anchor them in so they don’t get carried out, and that’s going to be a lot of work in the middle of winter,” Boedeker told the Dispatch.

Kindling the candles of Hanukkah
“It’s about familyIt’s about community It’s about tradition,” explain members of the Jewish Congregation of the Kenai Peninsula Briat Elohim. The small congregation gathered on the third night of Hanukkah to celebrate those traditions with food, fellowship, games and dance.

Shaving it off helps United Way raise $50K
It’s been said that “God only made a few beautiful heads and the rest he covered with hair.” In the case of Central Peninsula General Hospital Chief Financial Officer Jason Paret everyone may now decide for themselves. Paret in learning that the employees of CPGH generously contributed some $36,000 to the United Way campaign last year felt rather secure in offering his mane if they met a $50,000 bench mark, “With a $50,000 goal I pretty much assured myself that their was no way they would meet that mark and that my hair would be safe, so I put my hair on the line,” Paret told the Dispatch. CPGH Chief Executive Officer Ryan Smith, already smooth headed, matched the challenge by offering to dance the hula with Dennis Murray of Heritage Place, if the goal was met.

The Crossing takes top honors at the Tesoro MS Chocolate Affair
It was just a year ago when Scott and Cherie Curry purchased and began remodeling the former Tides bar and grill at the bridge in Soldotna. By the time they were ready to open in April the original homestead location had received a total make-over and a new name; “The Crossing.” The results were immediately pleasing to the community and the popularity of The Crossing as a gathering place that features live music and gourmet cuisine has been growing ever since. “The support we’ve received from the community has far exceeded our expectations,” said Curry. Now after being open for less than a year The Crossing has claimed their first prestigious culinary arts award.

Donations help keep community warm
The Peninsula Grace Brethren Church would like to thank our community for its enthusiastic support of our Coats for the Community project.

More Santas needed
Where is the Christmas spirit here on the peninsula? Today, Dec. 20, I have been calling around and trying to find a place for my granddaughter to go and have her picture taken with Santa and there is nowhere — the Peninsula Center Mall has Santa, but only part time and no other merchant offers pictures with Santa.

Hero remembered
God bless our unsung heroes in blue that run to the aid of those in need.

Store makes space for popcorn
Nikiski Cub Scout Pack No. 654 would like to thank Doug Jung and his staff at the Kenai Safeway for allowing us to sell Scout Popcorn on a Saturday in December.

Program gives others a better Christmas
On behalf of the Soldotna Elementary staff, we would like to thank the following contributors for their Christmas kindness: Chevron, Tesoro, Ladies Auxiliary VFW, Soldotna Elementary PTA and staff, Soldotna Rotary, Sonshine House Daycare & Preschool, Credit Union 1 and multiple private donors.

Support appreciated
I would like to take this opportunity to thank the staff at Redoubt Elementary School. You all showed such kindness, support and love to me and my husband (Trooper Larry Erickson) when it was needed. The situation that took place for my husband on Dec. 9 could have turned out quite differently than it did. Your hugs and concern for my family overwhelmed me, thank you again.

Community helps make tournament a ‘Classic’
The 2006 Cook Inlet Academy Classic was completed Dec. 16. Players and coaches from Ninilchik, Tri-Valley, Lumen Christi and CIA made this tournament a great success on the court.

Let’s not be a Grinch
This holiday season, we have a lot to be thankful for. In Bristol Bay, we have a gift from God that keeps on giving. Each year, our clean undisturbed waters become home to millions of wild sockeye salmon that continually give birth to more fresh fish. This renewable resource keeps our fisheries one of the richest and purest in the world.

Article makes reader’s day
Developing renewable energy sources are a step in the right direction for the residents of the Kenai and the state of Alaska. The Clarion’s recent article and the growing interest in tidal and wind electric generation potential in our little corner of the world made my day.

Coal development idea makes sense
As one who has pushed for coal development for the last 24 years, I appreciated the series on coal mining at Beluga.

Soldotna city council prepares for contract talks
In advance of upcoming contract negotiations with police and city workers, the Soldotna city manager will be meeting in executive session with the city council tonight.

Boyle set to come home
This holiday season, one Kenai boy is celebrating the greatest gift of all — good health.

Erosion issue tops list
The city of Kenai wasted little time in asking newly elected Gov. Sarah Palin to be included in the budget she submits to the Legislature for the coming year.

Hot topic: Subsistence regs
The comment deadline is fast approaching on one of the hottest issues likely to stir Kenai Peninsula waters in 2007: proposals opening new subsistence fisheries.

After 65 years, Pearl Harbor climb a little longer
When he was a 20-year-old soldier in 1941, Frank Kataiva could run up and down the trail to his guard post on Diamond Head in Hawaii.

Soldotna Elementary finds new ways to teach
Erin Southwick didn’t set out to implement an innovative music and reading program at Soldotna Elementary School — she was just looking to keep working full-time.

Misdirected package leads to drug bust
An unseasonably scrooge-like gesture, heaped piles of trouble on a Soldotna man who refused to return an Avon package mistakenly delivered to his residence earlier this month.

Cemetery stopped dead in its tracks — for now
Soldotnans are about to turn the page on yet another year, and still, no cemetery.

Harry F. Barnes
Longtime Kenai resident Harry F. Barnes died Saturday, Dec. 23, 2006, at Central Peninsula General Hospital in Soldotna. He was 82.

Roy Albert Mullen
Soldotna and former Anchorage resident Roy Albert Mullen died Wednesday, Dec. 20, 2006, at Heritage Place in Soldotna. He was 78.

· Kate (Wisnewski) Veh and Andy Veh of Soldotna announce the birth of their son, Benjamin Anselm Sang-Chul, at 3 p.m. Wednesday, Dec. 13, 2006, in Seoul, South Korea.

Peninsula Reflections
From the organizational meeting of the first Cooper Landing Chamber of Commerce held at Millie Eaton’s Kenai Lake Lodge on June 11, 1959, until the chamber secretary closed out their bank account by writing a check to the Cooper Landing Community Club, in 1964, the chamber records illustrate the actions of a small but dynamic group dedicated to bettering the community.

Community Events
Bellringers to performYouth New Year’s party slatedYouth volleyball, basketball offeredCancer fundraiser sets high goalsReading carnival seeks vendors

Photo feature: Congratulating the Troops
From the organizational meeting of the first Cooper Landing Chamber of Commerce held at Millie Eaton’s Kenai Lake Lodge on June 11, 1959, until the chamber secretary closed out their bank account by writing a check to the Cooper Landing Community Club, in 1964, the chamber records illustrate the actions of a small but dynamic group dedicated to bettering the community.

Around the Peninsula
Middle school basketball offeredCribbage tourney continuesYouth New Year’s party slatedSoccer coaches soughtSwimming classes availableYouth volleyball, basketball offeredFundraisers for cancer victim beginKids’ winter reading program continuesWriters’ night needs authors

SoHi wins in San Diego
Dani Donaldson scored 12 points as the Soldotna girls basketball team defeated El Cajon (California), 53-18, in the opening game of a tournament held in San Diego, Calif. on Tuesday.

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