Burns an 'a' that

Juneau String Ensembles to perform Saturday

Contra dance held tonight at Terry Miller Office Building

City museum talk to highlight professional exchange program

Creative performing arts workshops for teachers continue

Art for Haiti: Thunder Mountain to host fundraiser

'The Expressive Body' workshop held this weekend

Some JDU spring classes still have room for students

Locally produced short premieres Tuesday at Gold Town

Third annual Lunafest held Friday at Centennial Hall

When theatrical spectacle isn't enough

DeRoux inteprets Alaska through his brush
Self-buttering bread, flying pie, clamshells, bricklayers, red dogs, gavels and automobiles are just a few items featured in Dan DeRoux's surrealistic painting titled "Joseph Sells His Dreams." DeRoux called the work autobiographical, with almost every square inch of the canvas full of iconic imagery representative of his nearly 40 years as an artist.

'Eli' a solid action flick
Look online for a plot synopsis of "The Book of Eli" and you might come across this snippet: "A post-apocalyptic tale in which a lone man fights his way across America in order to protect a sacred book that holds the secrets to saving humankind." I was double-checking my own understanding of the story when I found that. Now I am even more hesitant to begin this review than I was immediately after seeing "Eli."

Photo: Careful practice
Auri Clark, 15, practices with Ursa Major, the advanced chamber music group of the Juneau Strings Ensembles, as Gou Hua Xia conducts Jan. 10 at the Juneau Arts and Cultural Center. About 70 music students ranging from 5 to 18 years old will hold their annual performance on Saturday, Jan. 23, at Northern Light United Church. The evening will include performances by Ursa Major Ensemble, the Juneau Suzuki Violin Group, Stringin in the Rain Quartet, Encore String Quartet and the All-state Group.

UAS Sound & Motion series begins Friday
Evening at Egan, the Friday night fall lecture series at University of Alaska Southeast, has been in place for nearly 10 years, but until now there has been no formal equivalent planned for the spring. That will change beginning this Friday, when UAS launches Sound & Motion, a series of arts-related events and lectures held periodically on Friday evenings at the Auke Bay campus.

Check out the latest Newbery, Caldecott winners at the library
The Newbery and Caldecott Awards have been announced. The Newbery winner (for most distinguished chapter book) is especially exciting to many of us at the library, since we've been talking it up to anyone who will listen since it arrived: "When You Reach Me," by Rebecca Stead. The Caldecott winner (for the most distinguished picture book) is "The Lion and the Mouse," written and illustrated by the extremely gifted and prolific Jerry Pinkney.


U.S. descending into fear-driving society
The underfunded state of education aside, I cannot be the only conscientious voter in our venerable democracy who has grown sick and tired of losing my liberties to the market- driven whimsies of an emotionally charged, tyrannical, electoral majority.

Assembly right to postpone layoffs
I applaud the members of the Juneau Assembly who have decided to slow down the possible decision to lay off city employees as a solution to the budget shortfall. It is always easy to target this large portion of the budget - personnel cost - because it would make a large dent in closing the gap.

Man gets 8½ years in 1980s sex abuse
A 50-year-old Angoon man was sentenced last week to 8½ years in prison for sexually abusing two children in the early 1980s.

Where art thou, Romeo?
Plenty of catastrophes can befall a wolf: icy stream crossings, a nasty spat with a bear, a fall in a crevasse, even other wolves.

Photo: Welcome back
Rep. Alan Austerman talks with Ed White, of Alaska Airlines, during the 25th annual Community Welcome Reception on Wednesday at Centennial Hall. Volunteers representing the Alaska Committee, city of Juneau, Juneau Chamber of Commerce and the Juneau Convention & Visitors Bureau organize the event to welcome legislators back to town for the yearly session.

Photo: Fourth-grade floaters
Recreational boating safety specialist Michael Folkerts, right, and other members of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary help Ms. Frangos' fourth-grade class from Glacier Valley Elementary School put on life vests during a field trip to Aurora Harbor on Wednesday. Folkerts is helping Savannah Strang, 9, get properly fitted with a type III floation vest from the state's Kids Don't Float program.

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials reported:

Expert to discuss future of energy in Alaska
Gwenn Holdmann launches the Science for Alaska 2010 lecture series tonight with a talk about how Alaska can emerge as an energy leader.

Juneau, Maine swap fish tales
"As you'll maybe find out when you leave here, there's no place like this on earth," commercial fisherman Chris Place told 25 Glacier Valley students interviewing him on board his 42-foot combination vessel, Mara, last Friday.

JDHS senior heads to D.C.
Juneau-Douglas High School senior Haley Nelson helped to form a philanthropic organization for youth and raised money for a child with leukemia through elementary school art projects. She even brought rain to a Hopi community in Arizona - through fortuitous possession of the necessary feathers for a rain ceremony.

Photo: Battle of the bibliophiles
Marina McDowell, left, Booklin Jensen, center, and Beckey Erickson of Floyd Dryden Middle School celebrate their win in the Battle of the Books at the seventh/eighth grade level. The team will participate in a state-wide competition by phone in February. Battle of the Books is an Alaskan reading motivational and comprehension program sponsored by the Alaska Association of School Librarians. The three-student teams are tested on their knowledge from 12 books chosen the previous year by librarians from around the state.

Mentor Appreciation Month: Big Brother Jeff Sloss and Little Brother Joe
Matched in the school program since December 2004; matched in the community program since August 2009.

Around Town
Today, Jan. 22

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials reported:

Around Town
Today, Jan. 21

An A2 brief in Thursday's Empire reported that Chuck Kopp, who briefly served as former Gov. Sarah Palin's public safety commissioner and is now a legislative aide to Sen. Fred Dyson, R-Eagle River, resigned from commissioner days into the job after an undisclosed reprimand stemming from a sexual harassment claim against him came to light. Kopp said he disclosed the incident to Palin and the reprimand was later removed from his file by the city of Kenai following an appeal.

Beatrice Amelia Buchanan
Longtime Juneau resident Beatrice Amelia Buchanan died peacefully on Jan. 19, 2010, at the Juneau Pioneers' Home, where she lived for the last 15 years. She was 99, five months short of being 100.

Sylvia M. Fleek
Longtime Douglas resident Sylvia M. Fleek died Jan. 18, 2010, at home in Douglas. She was 93.

William G. Demmert
Former Juneau resident William G. Demmert died Jan. 19, 2010, in Bellingham, Wash. He was 75.

Alaska editorial: Tale of two gas lines
Some recent gas pipeline news from Canada has Alaskans wondering whether our big North Slope project faces renewed competition from elsewhere in the Arctic. Canada's Mackenzie Valley project has now cleared a half-decade-long review of its environmental and social impacts. The $16 billion project had been stalled by the intensive review. At 1.2 billion cubic feet a day, Mackenzie would be a little more than a quarter the size of Alaska's project, and its gas is scheduled to hit North American markets sooner. Some key companies in Alaska's natural gas scene - Exxon, Conoco Phillips and TransCanada - are also involved in the Mackenzie project.

Alaska editorial: Please, no robo calls
The following editorial appeared in the Ketchikan Daily News:

PRO: ACORN can play key role fighting global warming
WASHINGTON - It's hardly amazing that ACORN, the embattled community organizer that has done so much good in the nation's inner cities, is considered a latter-day embodiment of the anti-Christ by the nation's right-wing fringe.

CON: Taxpayers should demand a ban on funding to ACORN
WASHINGTON - If you think Congress stripped all federal funding from ACORN, think again.

It's time for truth telling in debate about economy
Paulette Simpson's Jan. 18 opinion piece was quite telling. Simpson makes the argument that Juneau's current economic hard times are caused by online shopping, distracted city leaders and legislative delegation, and particularly by the activities of the Southeast Alaska Conservation Council.

The lesson of Massachusetts
You can bet that political strategists in both parties will be parsing the meaning of the Massachusetts senatorial struggle for some time to come. If there was a slam dunk left in American politics, it should've been the Democrats' ability to easily retain a Senate seat they'd held for 57 years in what has become essentially a sea-blue state. Instead, they lost.

Feels like home on this ice
Tom McKenzie is not a fan of summer; he prefers the cold winter months that breed chilling temperatures, snow-covered mountains and, most importantly, ice.

ADF&G to hold sablefish meeting on Feb. 2 in Egan Room
JUNEAU - The Alaska Department of Fish and Game will be hosting a meeting regarding the Northern Southeast Inside Sablefish Fishery in Juneau at 2 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 2 in the Egan Room at Centennial Hall.

Tracks and Signs meeting Saturday at wetlands
JUNEAU - Kevin O'Malley will lead another Tracks and Signs Saturday Wild beginning at 10 a.m. at the Mendenhall Wetlands parking lot.

Alaska wildlife troopers join the Medallion Foundation
ANCHORAGE - The Division of Alaska Wildlife Troopers is undertaking a new endeavor in the name of aviation safety.

For local owls, spring starts at night
Now that we've turned the corner of winter and the days are lengthening, it won't be long before the first birds of spring start calling. But these are not the usual suspects, like the robin, as you may expect.

Winter for birds means adapting, getting fat
The thermometer on my front deck read 4 degrees Fahrenheit one morning. As daylight slowly crept over Thunder Mountain, juncos and chickadees began to come to the feeders. The chickadees whisked in and out in the blink of an eye, carrying off a sunflower seed to eat or store in the shelter of a nearby spruce. Juncos, gobbling millet seeds on the flat feeders, behaved very differently. They puffed out their feathers until they looked quite round, and crouched low to cover their bare legs, so much so that they seemed to have no legs at all.

Master gardener gives guidance on new, inventive seeds
It's this time of year that David Lendrum, co-president of the Southeast Alaska Master Gardeners Association, said the seed catalogs come rolling in.

Snowshoeing can be fitness for body, mind and soul
My lungs are burning. My legs are fried. My sports clothing is soaked with perspiration. All this after just 10 minutes on the trail.

Learn to Ski event applications available at Eaglecrest, schools
JUNEAU - The 29th Annual Learn to Ski Weekend at Eaglecrest will be held Saturday and Sunday, Jan. 30-31.

Grooming report
As of Jan. 21 the following Nordic trails are groomed and tracked for both skate andclassic skiing:

Wild shots
Submit your wild shots

Out & About
• Beginning Jan. 1, Out & About information must be submitted online at http://calendar.juneauempire.com. Submissions via e-mail, phone, fax or other will no longer be accepted. For more information e-mail webteam@juneauempire.com.

Denali's Curry Ridge closes to winter recreational vehicles
DENALI NAT. PARK - The Mat-Su Area Office, Alaska State Parks, announces that Curry Ridge on the east side of the Parks Highway in Denali State Park, is now closed to the use of snowmachines.

Probation officer makes first court appearance
ANCHORAGE- A state probation officer plans to fight charges he accepted cash and sexual favors in exchange for ignoring positive drug test results.

Palin to campaign with Texas governor
AUSTIN - Former vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin is heading to Texas to campaign with Republican Gov. Rick Perry on Feb. 7.

Missing Wasilla girl found safe in Anchorage
WASILLA - A Wasilla girl who went missing two weeks ago has been found safe in Anchorage and returned home.

Alaska Republican renewing call for more lawmakers
JUNEAU - An Alaska Republican is renewing a push to increase the number of state lawmakers.

State says North Pole water is safe to drink
FAIRBANKS - North Pole's water has been deemed OK to drink.

Delegation announces grants to Alaska
ANCHORAGE - A federal agency has awarded a grant of more than $2.1 million for an environmental survey of the Chukchi Sea coastal region.

State: Anchorage, Fairbanks to get more flights
ANCHORAGE - The Anchorage and Fairbanks airports will see both new and expanded service this year.

Bankruptcy not seen affecting Tokyo flights
FAIRBANKS - This week's bankruptcy filing by Japan Airlines is not expected to impact its already reduced service to Fairbanks.

Reward to help catch Anchorage cop shooter goes up to $25,000
ANCHORAGE - The reward for information about the shooting of an Anchorage police officer is now up to $25,000.

Probation officer charged with bribery, misconduct
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police have arrested a state probation officer on bribery and misconduct charges.

State seeks experts for cruise ship science advisory panel
JUNEAU - The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation is seeking applicants to fill a non-governmental organization (NGO) seat on its cruise ship wastewater science panel.

State to clear inactive voters from the rolls
JUNEAU - Nearly 12,000 names may be removed from state voter rolls this spring.

Mechanical failure lays up ferry
JUNEAU - State marine highway officials say they hope to have the ferry Aurora repaired quickly.

Kopp takes job as legislative aide
JUNEAU - Chuck Kopp, who briefly served as former Gov. Sarah Palin's public safety commissioner, is working as a legislative aide to Republican Sen. Fred Dyson.

Homeless Anchorage robber has prison wish granted
ANCHORAGE - A homeless man who held up an Anchorage bank to get thrown in jail had his wish granted.

Taco toss puts Fairbanks man in jail
FAIRBANKS - An Alaska man who hit a Taco Bell manager in the face with a double-decker taco has been sentenced to one day in jail and one year probation.

What jet lag? Bear girls beat Columbine
The Juneau-Douglas girls' basketball team beat Columbine 47-38 on Thursday in the first matchup of a three-game road trip to Colorado for the Crimson Bears.

Decade of training primes skier for Olympics
ANCHORAGE - There's a rhythm to Kikkan Randall when she steps onto her cross country skis and churns across a start line.

Sports in Juneau
• Beginning Jan. 1, Sports In Juneau information must be submitted online at http://calendar.juneauempire.com. Submissions via e-mail, phone, fax or other will no longer be accepted. For more information e-mail webteam@juneauempire.com

TMHS Falcons girls' JV hoops team picks up first-ever win
Girls' Results:

Parnell points finger at Washington
Gov. Sean Parnell took aim at the federal government in his first State of the State address Wednesday night, saying federal actions - on endangered species protections, issues of land access, health care - "often seem at war with Alaskan interests."

Legislature takes action a year after Cowdery guilty plea
The Legislature's Select Committee on Legislative Ethics has found probable cause that former Anchorage Sen. John Cowdery violated legislative ethics rules, but the finding comes more than a year after Cowdery pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to conspiracy to commit bribery.

Parnell highlights Juneau in support of resource development
Gov. Sean Parnell listed developing Alaska's resources, specifically mentioning those in Juneau, as one of his priorities, even if that development has to happen over federal government objections.

Sheldon Fisher to run against US Rep. Don Young
ANCHORAGE - Former telecommunications executive Sheldon Fisher announced Thursday that he will challenge Rep. Don Young in the 2010 primary election.

Southeast, rural energy issues considered by Legislature
Millions in funding for rural and Southeast energy projects was discussed Thursday by the Legislature, among them in conjunction with Southcentral and Railbelt projects that could cost billions.

Groups file challenge to Chukchi drilling
ANCHORAGE - A coalition of Alaska Natives combined forces Wednesday with some of the heaviest hitters in the environmental community to challenge a plan by Shell Oil to drill off northwest Alaska.

Global warming opens up Arctic for undersea cable
ANCHORAGE - Global warming has melted so much Arctic ice that a telecommunication group is moving forward with a project that was unthinkable just a few years ago: laying underwater fiber optic cable between Tokyo and London by way of the Northwest Passage.

Palin, McCain join forces again
PHOENIX - Sarah Palin and Sen. John McCain plan to campaign together again.

Charges amended in Point Hope caribou slaughter
ANCHORAGE - Prosecutors have amended charges against defendants in the Point Hope caribou waste case.

'Deadliest chef' brings Alaska cred to TV pilot
ANCHORAGE - As a chef, John Stryjewski has cooked his way from one adventure to another, in institutional kitchens, in swanky private ones. Atop wood stoves and over campfires. On oil rigs, boats and trains.

Haines man sentenced to 25 years for abuse
A Haines man was sentenced Thursday to 25 years in prison for sexually abusing a minor over a period of 7 years.

Parnell: Thoughts are with people of Haiti
JUNEAU - Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell remembered the earthquake victims in Haiti.

Bethel residents wanted 'wet' city, but not drenched
BETHEL - Less than four months after deciding to lift a ban on liquor sales, Bethel sent a stronger message that residents don't want bars or liquor stores.

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