Saturday, February 21, 2009

New young adult titles await at libraries
Yellow labels on the spines of books on the adult fiction shelves show they're meant for teen readers, with more intricate and mature plots than chapter books. Scan for them on the shelves, look them up in our computer catalogue or use these titles as a starting point.

'Renegades' offers stylish crime novel
"The Renegades" by T. Jefferson Parker.

Unauthorized book draws fire from Palin camp
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - A new unauthorized biography of Gov. Sarah Palin written by a People magazine editor hit bookstores Tuesday, drawing quick criticism from a Palin spokeswoman who said it can't be trusted and that Palin wants to write a book of her own.

Pacific Northwest Bestsellers
HARDCOVER FICTION

ARTS & CULTURE CALENDAR

We'll proceed
Individuals intrigued by man's never-ending search for meaning and the spiritual journey he undertakes in the process should stop by Perseverance Theatre's Second Stage to see "Underneath the Lintel," which opened Thursday and closes March 1. Written by Glen Berger, this one-man play is directed by Anni Stokes and performed by Ben Brown.

Neeson the only reason 'Taken' works at all
Let me start by saying I do not condone human trafficking. If, however, you decide to get involved in that seedy underworld in the near future - the economy does stink right now, after all - I offer you this advice: If you kidnap a young lady, and speak to her oddly calm father on the phone moments after you have "Taken" her ... and if he tells you over the phone that he's had a "long career" that has honed certain "skills" that make him a nightmare for people like you, that he "will find you," and that he "will kill you," take him at his word.

Here comes the bridal show
E ven Juneau brides who are envisioning a simple, do-it-yourself wedding in the woods where they can proudly sport their xtratufs under their gowns will want to check out this weekend's bridal fair.

'Sweet Melodies' ballroom dance tonight
JUNEAU - The Juneau International Folkdancers' monthly ballroom dance will be held at 7 p.m. tonight at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center. This month's event, "Sweet Melodies," will feature DJ music suitable for popular ballroom and Latin dances.

Chapel by the Lake's Renewal Weekend scheduled for Friday through Sunday
JUNEAU - Chapel by the Lake's annual Renewal Weekend will take place this weekend, Friday through Sunday, with events including music, refreshments and nightly lectures by Dr. Kenneth Bailey at 6:30 p.m. All weekend events, including a Saturday evening barbeque dinner, are free, and childcare is provided.

Juneau libraries to host craft afternoon, author presentation by O'Neill
JUNEAU - The Juneau libraries have announced two upcoming events.

Oscar-nominated Rahman brings music of India to world's ears
MUMBAI, India - Before A.R. Rahman received three Academy Award nominations for his contributions to "Slumdog Millionaire's" Indian-infused techno soundtrack, he was known across India as "the Mozart of Madras." He's long been Bollywood's best-known composer, a household name for his love ballads, offbeat world rhythms and patriotic pop hits that have sold more than 100 million albums, making him one of the world's top-selling artists.

Red Cross to host Hawaiian luau Saturday at Centennial Hall
JUNEAU - The Red Cross will host their third annual Hawaiian Luau Saturday beginning at 6:30 p.m. at Centennial Hall.

Night at the Oscars to be held at the Moose Lodge
JUNEAU - The American Cancer Society's Relay For Life is hosting "A Night At The Oscars" semi-formal event featuring a red-carpet walk and screening of the Academy Awards at 7:30 p.m. Sunday at the Moose Lodge.

City museum event to focus on Douglas Island gun
The Juneau-Douglas City Museum's Coffee & Collections series for this month will feature local researcher Mark Whitman presentation of "The Douglas Island Gun: Alaskan History Hiding in Plain Sight." The event will be held at 10:30 a.m. on Saturday, Feb. 28, at the museum.

Free Nordic skiing class Saturday
The Juneau Nordic Ski Club is holding free classes in Nordic skiing technique from 1:30 to 3:30 p.m. Saturday at the Mendenhall Campground. The clinic is open to the public, and no sign-up is required.

Some Oscar presenters back out
LOS ANGELES - Anonymity has its perks - especially for celebrity Oscar presenters who might need to wriggle out of the gig.

Whale Project benefit to be held Feb. 26 at UAS
JUNEAU - The Whale Project will hold a benefit at 7 p.m. Thursday in the University of Alaska Southeast Egan Lecture Hall. There is no charge, but donations will go to the Whale Project sculpture and fountain by R.T. "Skip" Wallen for Juneau's waterfront.

Raz Sadeghi
Age: 10

Sealaska shareholders want to see change
There have been many Sealaska shareholders that want change, but their strive for change is eventually defeated.

Department of Law supports dividend payment
Alaska's Permanent Fund dividend checks might amount to about $1,500 this year, despite the recent, unprecedented decline in the Permanent Fund.

Clarification
The Juneau Empire would like to clarify Gov. Sarah Palin's position on the Darfur Divestment, as reported in its Feb. 15 edition. Palin's former deputy commissioner of the Department of Revenue opposed the divestment bill during the 2008 legislative session when it was before the House State Affairs Committee. Palin herself did not vocally oppose the bill at that time. She began openly supporting divestment last Spring after the bill had died. The Empire reported Sunday that Palin had changed her position on the issue. Palin spokesman Bill McAllister said the governor had no opinion on the issue when it was before lawmakers last year, although one of Palin's top officials, who appeared to be acting on the governor's behalf, did oppose the legislation.

Students try hands at urban planning
For the last five weeks, 50 third graders at Riverbend Elementary School have been using part of their Thursday morning to role-play as urban planners for a city of their own design.

Sen. Murkowski suggests directional drilling in ANWR
Environmental groups said they would fight any legislation that would allow oil companies to drill sideways from outside the boundaries of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge into its oil reserves, predicting it would be "dead in the water" under the Obama Administration.

Photo: Fired up
Participants in the All Unions Rally sponsored by the Alaska State Employees Association gather in front of the Capitol Thursday to listen to several different legislators and union officials speak. The purpose of the rally was to show support for reinstating a defined benefit retirement system for public employees and the Employee Free Choice Act. Several lawmakers, including the Juneau delegation, spoke in favor of a defined benefit retirement system and the Employee Free Choice Act. An estimated 350 people attended the rally.

Photos: Crustacean STATION
Edgar Cedillo of Alaska Glacier Seafoods unloads tons of tanner crab off the vessel Phoenix Thursday afternoon before being weighed and processed. Brown king crab was also unloaded and weighed, then loaded onto a tender to be held live for later processing.

Photo: Offering hope
U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, speaks in front of a group Thursday before presenting a $1.5 million national youth suicide prevention grant at the Juneau-Douglas High Schoollibrary. Alaska's suicide rate is three-times the national average. The three-year grant will provide $500,000 in funding each year during that span. Seated, from right, is Ron King, whose son committed suicide, Dr. Eric Broderick, acting administrator of the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, and Bill Hogan, commissioner of Alaska Department of Health and Social Services. "Youth suicides are even more challenging in rural and isolated areas where youth have limited access to behavioral health services," Murkowski said.

Photo: Dog gone it
Tom Donek and Stephanie Walden walk their five dogs, Tombie, Pybus, Jaylie, Taku and Scout, for a walk in the sun Wednesday near Auke Village Recreation Area. The two said they enjoyed walking the dogs in the area because there is less snow to walk through.

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials and state police reported:

Around Town

Alaska editorial: Law report explains Alaska's gasoline fix
The Department of Law's report on gasoline prices in Alaska is the most enlightening explanation yet of the unfortunate situation victimizing Alaskans' pocketbooks.

Obama's first big battle
Both sides seem pleased with their performances in the first big battle of the Obama presidency.

Unintentional public service
Only a few weeks in the Senate, Roland Burris of Illinois has already performed a public service. He has shown why Senate vacancies should be filled in special elections, not appointed by state governors.

Mount Roberts Tram to replace haul rope
JUNEAU - Goldbelt Incorporated, owner of the Mount Roberts Tramway, will replace the main tramway cable later this month. The original cable has been in service for 12 years and has hauled more than 2.3 million passengers to the mountaintop and back.

Murkowski indicates run for re-election
JUNEAU - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski implied but hasn't outright said she's running for re-election next year.

Men likely died of hypothermia
KOTZEBUE - Alaska State Troopers say two men lost for days in freezing weather likely died of hypothermia.

Sen. McGuire launches new 'Twitter' feeds
JUNEAU - Sen. Lesil McGuire, R-Anchorage, has initiated an online "Twitter" feed to provide quick text updates about Capitol activities and actions in her committees.

Gatt scratches from Yukon Quest race
FAIRBANKS - Three-time Yukon Quest International Sled Dog Race champion Hans Gatt has scratched in the middle of this year's race.

State posthumously honors veterans
JUNEAU - The state's Joint Armed Services Committee has selected a day when more than 170 fallen Alaskan soldiers will be honored in an invitation only ceremony.

Delta Junction man being held in Canada
FAIRBANKS - A Delta Junction man charged with attempted murder has been detained by Canadian authorities after trying to cross the border.

Alaska awarded $3 million in HUD grants
ANCHORAGE - More than $3.4 million in federal grants will help Alaska organizations help house and support the homeless.

Oil spill reported on North Slope
ANCHORAGE - Environmental regulators are investigating a small spill at Alaska's Prudhoe Bay.

Kings strut into Bears' cave
It's fitting that the Crimson Bears will skip the usual Senior Night shenanigans when they end their regular season by hosting Southeast Conference rival Ketchikan tonight and Saturday. After all, the sweet smell of those parent-bound roses would only get lost in the stench of vengeance.

Photos: JSC whiz kids make Alpine Team
The JSC qualified three junior racers on the Alaska Alpine Team after the Alyeska Cup and Juneau Junior Olympic Qualifying races over the past two weekends. Those three racers - Ali Eason, Peel and Brian Vandor - will compete in either the J3-J4 Western Region Junior Olympics on March 19-22 at Brundage Mountain in McCall, Idaho or the J1-J2 Western Region championship on March 5-10 at Schweitzer Mountain in Sandpoint, Idaho.

University Regents decry recent NCAA development
The University of Alaska's Board of Regents unanimously backed a resolution criticizing a change to the NCAA's Division II playoff format.

Sports in Juneau
UPCOMING EVENTS

Cook Inlet natural gas exploration due to slow
Exploration and development drilling for natural gas in Cook Inlet is likely to slow in 2009 and this could worsen problems in the deliverability of gas to consumers in Southcentral Alaska during winter cold snaps, the director of the state Division of Oil and Gas says.

Independent Alaska Air can't rule out merger
ATLANTA - Alaska Air Group Inc., operator of Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air and a partner of Delta Air Lines Inc., would consider a combination with another carrier if the right deal was proposed, but for now is committed to its independence and isn't thinking about a merger, executives said Wednesday.

Escape shelter designed for Newtok residents
Architects trying to cut moving costs for an imperiled Southwest Alaska village have designed an evacuation shelter with wood-heated steam baths, a gravity-fed sewer system and a permafrost-chilled cellar.

Ketchikan sailmaker Louis Bartos keeps 'old ways' alive
KETCHIKAN - When asked how he got started as a sailmaker, Louis Bartos cites two major influences: his love of sailing and the valuable advice and guidance he received from an old Swedish sailor.

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