Sunday, March 9, 2008

Welcome to Gold Medal 2.0
It didn't take long for the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament to become an institution. In 1947, the old Juneau High School gym featured giant crowds, as fishermen, students, public officials and people from all walks of life in Southeast Alaska indulged in the region's obsession - basketball.

Two brackets are eliminated as Master's expands
The 62nd Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament will feature revamped brackets reminiscent of the event's early days.

Gold Medal legends
A ssisting teammates on the court is common practice in basketball, but some people associated with the Juneau Lions Club Gold Medal Tournament continue helping even after their basketball careers are long over.

Martin part of Gold Medal legacy
On a Sunday afternoon at Mount Jumbo gym, John Martin gets a pass from his teammate during a pickup basketball game. He shoots the ball and drains a 3-pointer.

Gold Medal game for the ages
There have been many great games I have photographed while covering the Lions Club Gold Medal Basketball Tournament during my 25 years working for the Juneau Empire. There are so many buzzer-beaters, overtime thrillers and heroic efforts to recall.

Juneau Lions Club is all about being of service
Before there was Gold Medal basketball in Juneau, there were Lions. For nearly 64 years, Juneau Lions Club members served communities throughout Southeast Alaska. The club currently has 23 members, who passionately uphold the Lions Club International motto, "We serve."

Taking the National Stage
Dozens of Juneau fourth- and fifth-graders will stage a send-off performance of the "Tides and the Tempest" on Monday night before bringing the play to the nation's capital.

Russian Orthodox Church places top bishop on leave
When he speaks to his congregation at St. Nicholas Russian Orthodox Church this morning, the Rev. Michael Spainhoward said he will be asking the members of the church to pray for its future.

Redfern permitted to clean up mine site
The British Columbia provincial government will allow Redfern Resources Ltd. to start cleaning up the old contaminated Tulsequah Chief mine before it digs anew for ore.

Juneau woman, found unconscious, dies after vehicle crashes
A Juneau woman is dead after being involved in a one-vehicle crash at about 5 a.m. Saturday morning, police said. The driver of the car told police the accident occurred while he was rushing the woman to the hospital because she had passed out.

Photo: Turning green
Cristian Batac, 7, right, Ryan Galaktionoff, 9, Aidan Hopson, 6, and Morgan Blackgoat, 7, watch Wes Roggenkamp of the Southeast Panhandlers Motorcycle Club cook green eggs for the school breakfast program Friday at Riverbend Elementary School. In honor of Dr. Seuss's birthday, the school served green eggs and ham and gave away a book to each student.

Around Town
Today

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

Corrections
An Around Town item in Friday's Empire incorrectly listed the date of the lecture and book signing by journalist Dahr Jamail. The event will take place at 7 p.m. Monday at the University of Alaska Southeast Egan Lecture Hall.

My turn: Sustain the Juneau lifestyle
Sustainability. Sometimes it's hard to take such a broad concept and sum it up in a single word. In the customary sense, sustainability is meeting our present needs on this planet without compromising the needs of future generations. But what does that mean for you and me here in Juneau?

My turn: Anti-roaders need to define improved ferry service
I see where Sen. Kim Elton has another Lynn Canal Highway rant going on his Web page. This one stems from the Senate Transportation Committee meeting produced and orchestrated by Southeast Alaska Conservation Council last week with the anti's calling for "improving ferry service" instead of building a road. The highway project started in 1993. With the constant, 15-year threat of a destructive road going through an ancient forest and destroying Haines and Skagway forever, a logical question has to be: Why hasn't ferry service been improved over that time?

Empire editorial: The wrong way to fill the halls of Thunder Mountain
Imagine if, during the fierce debate over whether to build a second high school, supporters had billed it as the campus where Juneau sends students who are poor or Native.

The recession and Juneau's economic prospects
In a January column I explained how America is headed for a recession, and how Alaskans won't be spared the belt-tightening (see "Oncoming recession to challenge state," Jan. 24). Later I surveyed Juneau's response to recessions and depressions in the past, finding hopeful lessons in that history (see "Juneau weathered well during Great Depression," Feb. 10). Today I explore Juneau's economic assets as the community contemplates American's unfolding economic retrenchment. I find more reasons for hope, and one glaring problem.

Toe Toon
Cartoon by local artist Toe.

Underwater wonders
From Annette Smith's window at the top of the State Office Building, the gray, flat, opaque water sitting between downtown Juneau and Douglas Island appears impenetrable. But for Smith, a diver, it's merely covering the vast and varied landscape whose topography and creatures she has come to know well.

Predator control program OK'd for southern Alaska Peninsula
FAIRBANKS - The Alaska Board of Game has approved a predator control program on the southern Alaska Peninsula to help a declining caribou herd.

Ensuring safety on the slopes of Eaglecrest
In the very special mountain community we call Eaglecrest Ski Area, everyone's most important responsibility is safety. Skiing and boarding have inherent risks, but there are some things we can do to reduce those risks. Most important is to know and abide by the Alpine Responsibility Code. This code has seven basic, common sense tenants. They are:

Passive plants not so defenseless
Much of the world is green-covered with verdant vegetation, so one might think there's plenty of food out there for all the millions of herbivorous animals that eat greenery. All those deer and rabbits and caterpillars, to mention a few, generally do not seem to gobble up the vegetation and eat it down to nubbins. But why not?

Out & About
Today: Public trap shoot, 10 a.m.-2 p.m., Juneau Gun Club.

Sculptors scramble to preserve creations
FAIRBANKS - Ice sculptors at the World Ice Art Championships in Fairbanks were feeling the heat as temperatures climbed to a record 45 degrees.

Palin pregnancy news stammers Web traffic
JUNEAU - Her moves as governor have created headline news ranging in subject from calling out political corruption to posing for Vogue, but her pregnancy nearly shut down the Juneau Empire's Web site Thursday for several hours.

Fisherman fined for undersized crabs
JUNEAU - A Petersburg man pleaded no contest and was sentenced to pay a $5,000 fine Thursday on charges that he took undersized crabs.

Troopers ask for help in fuel thefts
JUNEAU - Alaska State Troopers are requesting help with information about home heating fuel thefts that have occurred over the past several months in Southeast.

Woman found dead in hotel hot tub
JUNEAU - A Juneau woman was found dead in a hotel hot tub early Saturday morning by local authorities.

Dog on team of rookie musher dies
ANCHORAGE - A dog on the team of rookie Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race musher John Stetson died early Saturday morning.

JDHS girls steal a conference title
To win the physical game against Ketchikan, the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball game needed to win the mental game first.

SPORTS IN JUNEAU
MEETINGS / CLINICS / ANNOUNCEMENTS

Physical Bears earn trip to state
For four quarters Friday, the Juneau-Douglas High School boys basketball bumped bodies, dove for balls, collided with Kings and took shots under pressure.

Vikings raid Juneau in crossover title win
Though the game didn't count toward any rankings or standings, and the prize is little more than a plaque and a pennant on a gym wall, Juneau-Douglas and Petersburg's boys basketball teams showed why the Class 3A/4A crossover game is so much more than an exhibition.

Seven up for Juneau-Douglas girls
The Crimson Bears routed Class 3A region champs Mount Edgecumbe 71-34. JDHS hasn't lost a Class 4A title or a crossover game since 2001, when the Braves took the title.

Final 3A/4A Southeast Conference Basketball Tournament Brackets

CLASS 3A/4A Southeast Conference awards
CLASS 3A GIRLS BASKETBALL ALL CONFERENCE

Photos: Kicks and splits
Superior: Juneau-Douglas Dance Team members perform their tournament routine Saturday during the team's adjudication. Back row, from left, are Nicole Roldan, Amanda Endicott, Skylar Engle, Gloria Lumba and Sofia Tenney. Front row, from left, are Amanda Leamer, Tarah Desatoff, Carrie Laliberte, Serena Drazkowski and Nicole Solanoy.

Defending champion first out of Nulato
NULATO, Alaska - Defending champion Lance Mackey was the first musher out of this Yukon River checkpoint Saturday in the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race, leaving with a team he said was not running at full-throttle.

UAF skier wins 20K at NCAA championships
FAIRBANKS - University of Alaska Fairbanks senior Marius Korthauer marked his birthday with a big win.

GOP chairman Ruedrich faces possible coup
Alaska Republican Party Chairman Randy Ruedrich, who has sparred with Republican Gov. Sarah Palin, faces a possible coup if he does not resign at the state convention next weekend.

Permanent Fund gives State Street the boot
Attorneys for the state in December won a remarkable settlement with State Street Global Advisors after the huge investment company lost some state retirement money last summer, but the company's involvement with Alaska wasn't over.

Man accused of 23 counts of rape in prison case
ANCHORAGE - A 22-year-old Anchorage man awaiting trial for dismembering and freezing a body has been accused of 23 counts of rape involving another inmate.

Federal official looks into delays in polar bear listing
WASHINGTON - The Interior Department's inspector general has begun a preliminary investigation into why the department has delayed for nearly two months a decision on listing the polar bear as threatened because of the loss of Arctic sea ice.

FDA official testifies in schizophrenia drug case
ANCHORAGE - A retired medical officer with the federal Food and Drug Administration testified that drug maker Eli Lilly & Co. downplayed the health risks of its schizophrenia drug Zyprexa to make more money.

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