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Friday, March 13, 2009

New chapter books for kids await at the library
"Don't Shoot: Chase R's Top Ten Reasons NOT to Move to the Country," by Michael J. Rosen.

Arts & Culture Calendar

Korean beat meets American jazz
Few things can heat up a chilly March night in Juneau quicker than a live, high-energy performance. Juneauites will have the opportunity this weekend to warm up with seven world-class performers from Korea.

'Watchmen' is visually tantalizing
There is not a single thing about "Watchmen" that is anything less than grandiose, whether you're simply talking about its running time (164 minutes) or discussing the long, multi-generational list of characters. Then of course there's the fact that it is based on the much-celebrated graphic novel by the same title, a novel I suspect 90 percent of the folks reading this have never read. Part of me wishes I was in that group, but I read the novel in the days leading up to the film's release. Thus, it's impossible for me to judge the movie without immediately comparing it to the pages written by Alan Moore (Moore, by the way, has been rather open about his disdain for this movie) and illustrated by Dave Gibbons.

The power of a poem
Part of the appeal of poetry, according to former U.S. poet laureate Robert Pinsky, is that its power is transferable: Individuals other than the artist can wield it in their own way.

Student Artist: Tim McKenna
Grade: 3

Economic stimulus for bluegrass musicians
The economic turbulence that plagues our country and planet is widespread, and although the effects of the crisis have been slow to reach Alaska, this new Great Depression is being felt right here in Juneau. Tourism bookings are down, the oil industry is cutting jobs in Alaska and bluegrass musicians are broker than usual. Not even V.I.C.T.O.R can save them.

Symphony of synthesis
An eclectic mix of artists and musicians have collaborated to produce a cultural commemoration of music and a message of hope for Alaskans during the Juneau Student Symphony's winter concert series this weekend.

'Shrew' story a bit boorish
The Taming of the Shrew," one of Shakespeare's 17 comedies, is also another kind of history, offering a glimpse at the reality of a woman's life in Elizabethan England. A woman's only power at that time, we gather from the play, was in the manipulation of her sexuality. While I have considerable appreciation for Theatre in the Rough's complete and "straight" playing of the original script, and the authenticity of the fabulous costumes, I was also vexed by the boorish message that all ends well when women simply accept men as their lords and masters.

Coffee & Collections presents 'The History of Gold Medal'
The Juneau Douglas City Museum continues its Coffee & Collections series with "The History of Gold Medal" at 10:30 a.m. March 21.

Alaska Ocean Film Festival held March 22
The Alaska Ocean Film Festival will be held from 7 to 9 p.m. Sunday, March 22. at the Back Room at the Silverbow.

Ballroom dance to be held Saturday at Centennial Hall
The Juneau International Folkdancers will host a ballroom dance from 7 to 10 p.m. Saturday at Centennial Hall, with DJ music suitable for popular ballroom and Latin dances.

Poetry Omnibus announces winners
The winning poems from the recent Poetry OmniBus competition have been selected and will be posted inside Capital Transit System buses beginning in mid-March.

Northern Lights Theater performances, meeting this weekend
Northern Lights Junior Theatre will present "A MIDNIGHT CRY: The Underground Railroad to Freedom" this weekend at the First Church of God, 2215 Ka-See-An Drive.

Ibsen event moved to Hickel Room
At 4 p.m. Saturday, March 14, there will be a DVD presentation on the life and works of Henrik Ibsen in the Hickel Room of Centennial Hall. This was originally scheduled for the Juneau Arts & Culture Center, but has been moved to Centennial Hall. A lunch and discussion will follow at the Yacht Club.

Live 'Gong Show' at the Alaskan Saturday
Celebrate the Ides of March this Saturday at the Alaskan Hotel & Bar with the Blazer Club's premiere event, The Gong Show.

UAS Beatniks to host open mic March 27
The University of Alaska Southeast Beatniks will host their second open mic night on March 27. All UAS students, faculty and staff, as well as community members, are invited to share their poetry, prose, artwork, music or any other art form at the event, to be held at 7 p.m. at the UAS Housing Lodge, 4300 University Drive.

Palin right to request more candidates
The citizens of Alaska elected Gov. Sarah Palin to perform and make exactly these types of decisions. It's time to remind our fellow Juneau Democrats of who the citizens of Alaska voted in as governor, and in so doing have vested in her the constitutional authority to select whomever she sees fit to represent the vacant Senate seat.

Most people in Alaska support Sarah Palin
I just read Phil Smith's letter to the editor in the March 9 Empire, raving about Sen. Kim Elton and criticizing Gov. Sarah Palin. I think Smith might be surprised to know that most Alaskans have quite different opinions about Elton and Palin.

Palin deserves more than one choice
The vacant Senate seat is neither Sen. Kim Elton's to give away, nor Rep. Beth Kerttula's to inherit.

Stimulus bill should spread the wealth
I have not done the math on this (there aren't enough zeroes on my calculator), but I have heard that if $800 billion in stimulus money were to be paid out to the general public, we would all be in line for about $200,000.

Senate seat up for grabs
Gov. Sarah Palin broke with tradition when she bypassed the Juneau Democratic Party's recommendation for appointment to the Alaska Senate, after Democrats broke with tradition by submitting only a single name, that of Juneau Rep. Beth Kerttula for the seat.

Top lawmaker defends death penalty
House Speaker Mike Chenault, the driving force behind an effort to bring the death penalty back to Alaska, on Wednesday met with Juneau's Native community on the issue.

City aims to double express bus service
The city's downtown-to-Auke Bay express buses may begin running their routes twice as often and later in the evening starting in July. The Juneau Assembly's Finance Committee on Wednesday backed the $270,000 expansion plan.

Police charge teen in cookie caper
A 17-year-old boy has been arrested in connection with the theft of nearly $800 from two 10-year-old Girl Scouts at Fred Meyer on Sunday.

Ferry engineers reach contract with the state
The state has reached an agreement with the Marine Engineers Beneficial Association, the last of the state ferry unions operating without a new contract.

Juneau may face $7 million budget deficit in 2011
Rough projections of the city's operating budget through 2014 show a revenue trough in 2011 that could lead to a $7 million budget deficit, though the upcoming 2010 budget year appears sound.

Oratory contest keeps Native languages alive
The University of Alaska Southeast held its seventh annual Native Oratory Contest on March 7. UAS students from Juneau, Ketchikan and Yakutat, one student from Juneau Douglas High School, one from Thunder Mountain High School and one home-schooled student competed in the event.

New tattoo shop opens in Juneau
Tattooists Jack Marchant, Dave Lang and body piercer Shane Sewell are the artists behind the counter at New Tide Tattoo. The trio opened their shop in early March in downtown Juneau.

Craig man sentenced in wildlife violations
A 41-year-old Craig man will serve more than three years in prison for violating the Lacey and the Marine Mammal Protection acts.

Photo: Avalanche watch
Bill Glude of Alaska Avalanche Specialists waits and watches for an avalanche to photograph as the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities maintenance and operations crews conduct avalanche mitigation on Thane Road Thursday. Some snow was brought down but none reached the road.

Photos: Finishing Trinity
Exactly three years ago today, the old historic Holy Trinity Episcopal Church was destroyed by fire. Convicted arsonist Robert huber was given an 80-year prison sentence for starting the blaze that destroyed the church, McPheters Hall and an adjacent home.

Photo: Winter maintenance
Scott Allee shovels snow off the dock finger after clearing his boat of snow Thursday in Aurora Harbor.

Photo: Under cover
A woman with an umbrella walks through the Centennial Hall parking lot during Thursday's snow storm.

Photo: Ice breaker
Salty Hanes chips ice off the sidewalk Wednesday in front of her Third Street home. A winter weather advisory is in effect until 6 p.m. today. Snow and rain are expected in the morning, turning rain in the afternoon.

Around Town
Today

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

Around Town
Today

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

Mary Johnson Starr
Juneau resident Mary Johnson Starr died March 9, 2009. She was 87.

Sherry A. Wythe
Former Juneau resident Sherry A. Wythe died March 6, 2009, in Houston. She was 48.

Mack Nakamura Sr.
Juneau resident Mack Nakamura Sr. died March 10, 2009, in Juneau. He was 83.

Richard Bean Jr.
Hoonah resident Richard Bertram Bean Jr. died March 9, 2009, in Juneau. He was 61.

Outside editorial: Balancing act
Much has changed since leaders of the Group of 20 nations met in Washington on Nov. 15. President Obama has replaced George W. Bush. A new economic team brimming with ideas has taken the reins in the United States. And the financial crisis that Obama inherited has, in many respects, intensified.

Outside editorial: A bear escape
During a visit to the Interior Department last week to celebrate its 160th anniversary, President Obama reversed an end-of-term Bush administration regulation that had gutted one of the signature environmental laws: the Endangered Species Act. Mr. Obama ordered the restoration of interagency consultation on projects that may affect threatened or endangered species while Interior Secretary Ken Salazar and the next commerce secretary review President George W. Bush's Dec. 16 directive to determine whether to pursue a new rule.

Journey to destruction
"A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step," said Confucius. But a journey of whatever length presumes one has a destination in mind. With President Obama's executive order authorizing expanded federal funding for research using stem cells, produced from the destruction of human embryos, the destination will be left up to scientists, as will any "speed controls." The sky, or in this case the depths, will be the limit.

Senate choice should be based in past practices, common courtesy
Gov. Sarah Palin recently asked Juneau Democrats for suggestions about who to appoint to serve the rest of Sen. Kim Elton's state Senate term. Some have criticized her for not accepting the sole name forwarded by Juneau's Democratic leadership, Rep. Beth Kerttula. Any valid criticism about the governor's actions ought to be based in the law controlling replacement of legislative vacancies, and also consider the process and history of this law's implementation.

Picture is bleak for artists
Most of the people I know don't have regular jobs. They're writers, actors, musicians, artists, photographers and filmmakers. They also are middle-class taxpayers who carry mortgages and send their kids to public school.

Right way, wrong way to look back
The Obama White House is focused on the present and the future, but on some parts of Capitol Hill, Democrats are fixated by the past.

What if Bush policy mirrored Obama's?
Here with some questions about contrasts and double standards - and how the leftists comprising the nameless "they" who rule the world would react to what Barack Obama is doing if Obama were George Bush.

Outside editorial: Israel isn't off-limits
When John Mearsheimer and Stephen Walt wrote about "The Israel Lobby" in 2006, many supporters of Israel were outraged. How, they wanted to know, could anyone say that the United States offered "unwavering support" to Israel? Worse yet, how did these two misguided professors dare suggest that there was a cabal of die-hard Zionists in the media, in Congress, in the Pentagon and in neocon think tanks working to ensure that U.S. policy did not deviate from the pro-Israel party line?

Gov. Palin certifies stimulus spending for state roads
JUNEAU - Gov. Sarah Palin has signed a formal agreement with the U.S. Department of Transportation that says the state will not use federal economic stimulus money to replace state funding of projects in Alaska.

Thane avalanche mitigation slated
JUNEAU - Department of Transportation and Public Facilities maintenance and operations crews will conduct avalanche mitigation on Thane Road this morning.

Interior secretary to visit Alaska
ANCHORAGE - U.S. Interior Secretary Ken Salazar will visit Alaska next month.

Alaska Canine Cookies recalls dog treats
ANCHORAGE - An Alaska dog treat product is being recalled because of a possible risk of salmonella.

Lawmakers call for review of pipeline license
JUNEAU - Two Alaska lawmakers have introduced a resolution that would call on Gov. Sarah Palin to re-evaluate the natural gas pipeline license awarded to TransCanada Corp.

Kodiak museum reopens today
KODIAK - The oldest building in the state will reopen after an extensive renovation project.

Buglary suspect hides from police in insulation
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police arrested a 25-year-old burglary suspect who covered himself in insulation in a failed effort to hide.

Kenai superintendent chosen
KENAI - Dr. Steve Atwater, the assistant superintendent for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District, is getting a promotion.

No bids submitted for Ketchikan Gateway building
KETCHIKAN - No bids were solicited for the former offices of the Ketchikan Gateway Borough.

House to debate state operating budget
JUNEAU - A $9.7 billion spending plan for state government for the fiscal year starting July 1 is coming up for debate in the Alaska House.

New rules enacted for fishing guides
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Department of Fish and Game has enacted new rules for Southcentral Alaska saltwater fishing guides and crews.

Murder trial begins in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE - A 29-year-old man convicted of killing his father with a machete in Palmer is set to begin a second trial in connection with a two-day shooting rampage in Anchorage that was part of the deadly crime spree.

Crews remove oil from trawler aground
ANCHORAGE - The Department of Environmental Conservation said responders have offloaded 10,605 gallons of diesel fuel from a 112-foot trawler aground on St. George Island.

Gray whale wanders into San Diego Bay
SAN DIEGO - A California gray whale has wandered into San Diego Bay after migration season ended.

Bears shake off flu bug, prep for state
Almost every high school sport in Alaska jumps straight from regional tournaments to state tournaments, with just five days of practice in between.

From a racer's perspective
From a racer's perspective, it was a perfect example of how a person can be on top of their game one minute and hip-deep in trouble the next.

JDHS grad wrestles into final tourney for All-Navy
PENSACOLA, Fla. - Hospitalman Dante Santos, who grew up wrestling from the age of 9 in Juneau, Alaska, decided on an experienced-whim to walk on, try out and make the 2009 All-Navy Wrestling team in Pensacola. On Thursday, the team began competition at the Armed Forces Championships in Idaho.

For mushers, Takotna is the spa of the Iditarod Trail
TAKOTNA - The homemade pies are cooling in the corner, the stereo is playing country music and the griddle is frying up a breakfast of steak and eggs, or just about anything else, trail-weary mushers would want.

Buser maintains slim Iditarod lead
TAKOTNA - Martin Buser is still the Iditarod leader, but a Norwegian musher had to leave the sled dog race after he was injured in a crash.

Sports in Juneau
UPCOMING EVENTS

Ex-lawmaker to plead guilty to conspiracy
Another former Alaska lawmaker will plead guilty to a corruption charge tied to oil industry legislation.

Alaska historian retires from library
ANCHORAGE - It should be a crime against the state for a guy like Bruce Merrell to go free. The man knows too much.

C-SPAN to air series on Alaska corruption
The national cable television network C-SPAN will devote two interview programs to Alaska's ongoing political corruption investigation.

Palin plans two events in Indiana
Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin is planning to use money raised through her political action committee to attend two events in Indiana in mid-April, her first trip outside the state on a partisan agenda since returning from the presidential campaign.

Virgin America executive says airlines remains U.S. 'citizen'
ATLANTA - Virgin America's top executive denied Thursday that a foreign entity is holding more than 25 percent of the carrier's voting shares, and he insisted the fledgling airline remains in compliance with U.S. citizenship rules despite new assertions to the contrary by competitor Alaska Airlines.

Gun rights stymie wilderness bill
WASHINGTON - The House on Wednesday defeated a bill to set aside more than 2 million acres in nine states as protected wilderness - the victim of a renewed Republican push to allow concealed, loaded weapons in national parks.

Memorial held for soldiers at Fort Wainwright
FORT WAINWRIGHT - Soldiers from Indiana, New York and Utah who were killed in Iraq were remembered at a memorial service.

Four-time champion Buser takes Iditarod lead
TAKOTNA - Four-time Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race champion Martin Buser breezed through the tiny town of Takotna, spending less than a minute Wednesday before jumping on his sled runners and snatching the lead.

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