Thursday, March 20, 2003

Techwit: Enter into Dante's 'Inferno' - version 2.0
Have you read Dante's "Inferno," the theological allegory written in the 13th century? It doesn't exactly flow like a Stephen King novel, but it does offer interesting speculation about the afterlife. According to Dante, there are nine rings of hell. Sinners are assigned to a circle based on how badly they've behaved during their lives.

Business profile: Heidi Glasen
Title and company: Owner, The Scrapbook Shop Services: Scrapbooking, or "cropping," as some hobbyists call it, has surged in popularity across America in recent years, and Juneau has been no exception to that trend, Glasen said. "Scrapbooking isn't just something that big cities do," Glasen said. "Everyone has a box of photographs or boxes upon boxes of photographs that they want to put in an album."

Businesses go to work on your birthday
With her 6- and 8-year-old children, Jetta Whittaker has become something of an expert on local birthday party venues. She's been to just about all of them, she said. "The gymnastics academy is a total favorite. ... We've been to lots of swimming parties ... that big backyard place. ... And of course now the skating rink is a big hit," she said. Juneau organizations have done well catering to parents who want to treat their kids and their kids' friends to a special party, parents said.

Not palatable
Voters are accustomed to taking political campaign rhetoric with a grain of salt, but there is not a substance known to man that will ever make the promises and the outright lies of Frank Murkowski palatable. Where do I sign up for the impeachment process?

Cup for peace
In response to Jane Roodenberg's and Richard Schmitz's meeting and reconciliation, I think that Saddam and Bush just need to have a cup of coffee together.

Alyeska Central School serves students well
I am writing concerning the legislation proposal to close Alyeska Central School permanently. This proposal is part of Gov. Murkowski's budget.

Respectful differences
I would like to respond to Eva Small's My Turn column of March 17. She assumes that people marching for peace are less patriotic or love America less than those advocating war.

TR, patriotism, and legitimate protests
I am a veteran and I am against this war. I had just received my discharge in 1966 when the P3B that I flew on for the previous couple of years went down in Nam with all aboard. In memory of my crewmates, I helped start a local chapter of Vietnam Veterans against the war - as they asked me to do before I left them.

Abortion and breast cancer
It would seem reasonable to provide information and clarification about the possible relationships of induced abortions to development of breast cancer as presented in the recent Empire insert from the Minnesota Right to Life Organization.

Timely notice
As a local grocery clerk, periodically I sell alcoholic beverages. On March 12, I was informed by my boss that apparently I was among those who sold alcohol to a youngster just over 21 years old, without asking for I.D

Why can't we be friends?
As opinionated writers and speakers, many of us (myself included) have become talented at outlining people's faults, weaknesses, mistakes and wrongdoing. As my eyes skim these columns of criticism toward our political leaders, toward others' political leaders, and toward our fellow writers, I cannot help but shine a faint light on ourselves for a moment.

Consider keeping Treadwell rink open for summer skating
How lucky the residents of the Juneau-Douglas area are to finally have an indoor ice facility. At last, a winter sport that isn't winter-weather dependent! From the current showing of residents at the open skate sessions, the hockey practices and "students" of the Learn-To-Skate program, it appears this facility has been a desperately needed addition to the athletic community.

Level the fishing field
Any of us who have purchased mandarin oranges (tangerines) have probably noticed on the box a note saying they can't be sold in certain states and/or territories of the United States. I guess the reason for this is those states and territories grow similar products and don't want the competition.

Police and Fire
Juneau police, fire officials and state troopers reported:

State budget cuts could cost Juneau schools nearly $550,000
The Murkowski administration's proposed cuts to education would cost the Juneau School District about $548,000, including grants that help struggling students, local administrators said. The School Board on Tuesday passed a $39.33 million operating budget for a projected 5,457 students, but said it may have to revisit the plan when it knows what city and state money it will receive.

Fire in van strands traveling mother, son
Yama Radtke, 7, smelled the smoke and gasoline first. He told his mom, Yumi, who was driving their Volkswagen Streamliner down Glacier Highway. Yumi stopped the van and yelled for him to get out. Confused, Yama did what he was told. A few minutes later the back end of the van exploded into a fireball, sending cinders of their possessions to the sky.<

Cauliflower is a virtuous and serious vegetable
I usually try to start this column with a catchy or funny anecdote, but that won't work for cauliflower. Pale and uninviting in appearance, and definitely mild in flavor, cauliflower is just not a flashy or funny food. That said, cauliflower has an important, if less than flamboyant role to play. Approached with an appreciation for simplicity, cauliflower can be a satisfying, nutritious addition to many meals.

Time served for man guilty of fourth-degree assault
A man accused of muscling his way into a room at a downtown hotel while wielding a knife pleaded guilty Tuesday to lesser charges and was released from prison. Ordie Coney, 56, pleaded guilty to fourth-degree assault, a misdemeanor, as part of a plea agreement between defense attorney Jeffrey Sauer and District Attorney Rick Svobodny.

Photo: Juneau family serves
Lisa Viteri and her son, Alaxander, 2, look out a front window of their Juneau home Thursday morning. The emblem displayed is a Blue Star Banner, which signifies that the family has loved ones in the current conflict.

Around Town
Around Town is a listing of local nonprofit events.

Alaska beer crossing the pond
Though it's not yet distributed in all 50 states, Alaskan Smoked Porter soon will be sold in the United Kingdom, the company announced this month. "At the Great American Beer Festival in Denver ... an importer and one of the largest retailers in England, a chain, approached us," said Geoff Larson, who founded the Alaskan Brewing Co. 20 years ago with his wife, Marcy.

Swope ready to take charge at City Hall
City Hall veteran and local businessman Rod Swope says he's ready for the challenge of running Juneau's local government. The Juneau Assembly voted unanimously to give Swope, 51, the job of city manager Tuesday after interviewing four finalists. "I'm excited about it, I'm really looking forward to it," Swope said Tuesday. "I think I know what I'm getting into, I really do. It's going to be a tremendous amount of time and stress and really challenging, but I like challenges, I like variety. Every day it will be something different."

City asks feds for local immigration staff
Local officials are urging the federal government to put staff in Juneau to provide citizenship and immigration services. The new Department of Homeland Security absorbed the Immigration and Naturalization Service on March 1, splitting its duties among three new bureaus. The switch has brought concerns that Juneau residents might need to travel to Anchorage for immigration and citizenship services, according to a resolution approved by the Juneau Assembly last week.

Photo: Now if it'll only stay cold
Jason Nelson and Kurt Parkan built a snowman last weekend in front of their Mountainside subdivision home to express their desire for peace.

Juneau parents of soldiers stick close to TV for updates
When Linda Rusaw got home from her overnight shift at Fred Meyer early this morning, she turned on the news instead of going to bed. Then she and her husband, Ray, spent the morning attempting to make a still image of their son, 22-year-old Army Spc. Will Rusaw, from a video of his appearance on "Good Morning America" last month. For a few precious seconds on Feb. 7, Rusaw watched her son and some of his buddies from the Army's 3rd Infantry Division standing on a tank waving Will's Alaska flag.

Photo: High kick
Aaron Dull, 15, of Toksook Bay, demonstrates the Alaskan high kick during an assembly at Riverbend Elementary School on Tuesday. Dull is one of 12 Mt. Edgecumbe High School students touring Juneau schools this week.

Assembly may consider single-member districts
The Juneau Assembly might expand a discussion about reapportionment to include single-member districts, term limits and a strong mayor form of government. The populations of Juneau's two municipal election districts are out of balance and the city needs to reconfigure them to comply with state and federal court rulings. Changing the boundaries will mean seven of nine Assembly seats will be up for election this fall or next, according to city staff members. Normally, three seats are up for election each fall.

Churches plan special services
Several Juneau churches will hold special services this evening if a United States attack on Iraq begins. Holy Trinity Episcopal Church is open for prayer today and will hold a service of prayer at 7:30 p.m. if the bombing starts. Call 586-3532 for more information.

Local reactions to war mixed
Veterans, protesters and other Juneau residents went to church, lit candles, talked politics and reflected on the first Gulf War as news of the United States' military action against Iraq spread through town. Members of Juneau People for Peace and Justice congregated in a candlelight vigil on the steps of the Dimond Courthouse on Wednesday evening, holding banners and singing songs.

Around Town
Around Town is a listing of local nonprofit events.

Juneau residents react to expected war with Iraq
Whether it invokes fierce patriotism, a need for prayer or a resigned attitude of trust in the powers that be, President Bush's Monday evening ultimatum to Saddam Hussein seems to have raised more questions than answers for some Juneau residents."I'm just wondering if the true reason (for attacking Iraq) is because Iraq produces weapons of mass destruction," said Ruben Canon, a Filipino citizen who has been living and working in Juneau since April 2001.

Police and Fire
Juneau police, fire officials and state troopers reported:

This Day in History
In 1985, Libby Riddles won the Iditarod Sled Dog Race.

5-year-old wants missing father back
Thomas Gardner, 42, has no family or friends to speak of in town. He has a mental illness and keeps to himself. Few people even would have noticed he was missing. But Gardner's 5-year-old daughter Alexa, who woke up alone in the dark last week, knew her daddy was gone. "She said she just spent a lot of her time in the one to three days she was alone in the apartment sitting at the window watching for her dad to come home and just waiting," said police Officer Kris Sell, who interviewed Alexa after she was found. "You know, she was upset. She said her dad had never left her alone before and she didn't know why he would. But she's a remarkable, bright girl who's doing well under the circumstances."

Photo: In the tradition of craziness
A detail of Rhoda Walker's quilt answers precisely what the quilt's title asks: "Honey, Have You Seen My Neck Ties?" The quilt won a first prize in the "traditional" category at last weekend's Quilt 2003, an exhibition of 90 quilts presented by Capital City Quilters at Centennial Hall.

Neighbor briefs
Juneau student accepted into People to People academic program; UAS student wins Soroptimist award; Oath ceremony scheduled for May 16; Life in the Spirit Seminar

Women of distinction
AWARE's Women of Distinction Dinner had more than 310 in attendance last weekend. First lady Nancy Murkowski presented a plaque to each of the honorees.

Martin, Reber to marry
Sara Martin, formerly of Juneau, and Ryan Reber of Mesquite, Nev., will marry on Saturday, April 26, at the Mesquite Vistas Sports Club in Mesquite.

Design is work for wintertime
The appearance and disappearance of landscape features that come with the snow are really an eye opener. The swirling cloak obscures differences that identify places, and focuses attention on other features lost since last spring. It makes us think about how these features define our spaces.

Pet of the week
Dodie is a small, older dog who has had a hard life. She is a cocker spaniel mix with a short haircut; her coat was so dirty and matted it had to be shaved. Dodie is sweet and quiet. Granite's gray-and-black ticked coat resembles the rock for which he was named, but he is as sweet as a marshmallow inside.

Edward O. 'Bud' Fields
Former Juneau resident Edward O. "Bud" Fields, 81, died Saturday, March 15, 2003, at Providence Marianwood near Issaquah, Wash.

Lawrence Patrick Carroll
Longtime Juneau and Alaska resident Lawrence Patrick Carroll, 61, died March 15, 2003, following serious complications from surgery performed in June 2002.

My Turn: Look at the budget's details: user fees, spending cuts, development
Complaining by some about Gov. Frank Murkowski's state fiscal plan is comparable to complaining to a baker about the hole in his doughnut. It misses the dough. Murkowski's plan is no new taxes and no tapping the Alaska Permanent Fund earnings without a vote of the people. He advocates cuts in state spending and building infrastructure to promote economic development.

My Turn: Some issues need to be addressed
In response to Eva Small's letter published in the Empire on March 17, most of the people (peace marchers) she is so "tired of" do not love Saddam or Iraq any more than she does. They do not wish to live there as she seems to claim. I cannot speak for those who went to Russia during Stalin's years, but my bet would be that they, too, were acting in support of an ideal rather than an individual.

My Turn: We are affected by the distance of war
When I turn off the news of air raid sirens and flashing guns I hear only the sound of quiet waves and see a full moon slipping between the clouds. War, for those fortunate few living in the tranquility of Alaska, is a tragedy belonging to a different place. We will all sleep tonight in beds unthreatened, for now, by the blind reach of bombs.

My Turn: Historical perspective on the war
The conflict over Iraq deserves comprehensive thought. Am I nervous about an invasion of Iraq? You bet. There are plenty of things that can go wrong. On the other hand, to leave Iraq at status quo poses huge risks to us, to our allies, and to that benighted country's own people. The anti-war crowd says "no war" but does not offer a viable alternative. Maybe they don't have a plan at all, just opposition to the idea of fighting.

My Turn: About America and its self-anointed authority
Steeped in historical analogy, the Bush administration has tried to persuade us that its war on Iraq may be justly compared with the Allied struggle against fascism during World War II. In the latest installment of this ongoing delusion, the president subtly reminded us Monday night of the hapless "policy of appeasement," which abetted the pointless atrocities of the last century.

Juneau's Boozer scores a career-high 27 points
MEMPHIS, Tenn. - Great shooting and lots of points are leading to plenty of wins for the Memphis Grizzlies. The Grizzlies shot 61 percent from the field Wednesday night, built a quick lead and easily defeated the Cleveland Cavaliers 128-101 for their seventh victory in eight games.

Craig boys look to make waves in Class 3A tourney
After clear-cutting their way through last week's Region V-Class 3A tournament, the Craig Panthers boys basketball team - with its seven super seniors - heads to Anchorage this week with an eye on a state championship. Craig, along with the Petersburg boys and girls teams and the Mount Edgecumbe girls squad, will represent Southeast at the Class 3A state tournament this Thursday through Saturday at the Sullivan Arena.

Letter: Hurrah for hockey
The inaugural ice hockey tournament at the Treadwell Arena in Douglas was a success. Teams from Anchorage, Juneau, Petersburg and the Yukon Territory participated in the tournament last weekend. The Juneau Aces skated to a 3-2 victory on Sunday in the gold medal game against the Anchorage's Play It Again Sports team.

Alaska State Basketball Polls
Here are the Alaska Sportswriters High School Basketball Polls, as voted on by statewide sports reporters and compiled by the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner.

Juneau boys to face familiar foe
Maybe it was fate that brought the Juneau-Douglas and East Anchorage boys basketball teams together to open state tournament play Thursday in Anchorage. After the two evenly-matched teams played to a hard-fought split of their two-game series in Juneau last month, T-Birds coach Fred Young whispered to Crimson Bears coach George Houston that he hoped they wouldn't have to face each other again this season.

Facing the unknown
This season, the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team played all but one of the teams that made this week's state tournament field. Guess who the Crimson Bears drew in their opening game? Out of seven possibilities, the fourth-seeded Juneau girls will play the unknown commodity - the fifth-seeded Soldotna Stars - to begin Class 4A state tournament play at 9:40 a.m. Thursday in Anchorage's Sullivan Arena.

Photos: Three-pointers
Three of Juneau's basketball players take their shot during the three-point competion in Anchorage.

Region V Standings
The Region V basketball standings through games of March 15. Standings are for all three Region V classifications and were reported to the Juneau Empire by school officials and basketball coaches.

Region V and State Basketball Championships
Here is a list of the previous Southeast and Alaska high school basketball champions. The Southeast champions listed are the region's champions up until 1984, when the schools were split into separate size classifications.

Sports in Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Soldotna girls end Juneau's title dreams
ANCHORAGE - The Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball team's hopes for a state title ended this morning, as the Crimson Bears fell to the Soldotna Stars 61-55 to open play in the Class 4A state high school basketball tournament at Anchorage's Sullivan Arena. The Juneau boys were due to play East Anchorage at 1 p.m. today for their first tourney game.

Letter: A great event on ice
Last weekend, an international hockey tournament was held in Juneau at the Treadwell Arena, which brought together teams from Haines Junction, Whitehorse, Anchorage, and Petersburg-Sitka, as well as four Juneau teams.

Juneau boys, girls games to be broadcast on KINY
After clear-cutting their way through last week's Region V-Class 3A tournament, the Craig Panthers boys basketball team - with its seven super seniors - heads to Anchorage this week with an eye on a state championship.

Nash sparks Mavs over hapless Cavs
DALLAS - After a lethargic first half against the league's worst team, the Dallas Mavericks turned to Steve Nash for a spark. Nash came back from a one-point first half and scored 18 during a third-quarter surge as the Mavericks won their third straight, 114-93 over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night. "It was a poor first half," said Nash, who finished with 21 points and six assists after missing all five of his first-half shots. "We needed to win this game and we needed to be more assertive and take things over."

Sports in Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

State Briefs
Duffy named Fish and Game commissioner; Man charged with vehicle riffling; Plane lands safely after losing wheel; D.A. says trooper justified in shooting disabled man; Troop resolution passes state Senate; Committee passes bill requiring clergy to report abuse

Labor contracts could cost $13 million
A deal offered to the state's 12 labor bargaining units to extend workers' contracts by one year and increase health benefits by $75 a month would cost the state roughly $13 million, according to state officials. Five of the unions and associations have signed tentative agreements with the administration and the remaining seven have until Friday - the 60th day of the legislative session - to make a decision.

Anchorage storm may have set record
ANCHORAGE - Winds that hammered Southcentral Alaska last week may have been the strongest gusts ever measured at Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport. The National Weather Service is reconsidering its wind warning standards and looking for other observations of strong winds in the city. The previous airport record of 75 mph hit during a similar storm March 3, 1989.

Alaskans respond to ANWR drilling decision
Wednesday morning's U.S. Senate vote on opening the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge for oil exploration had Alaskans such as Faith Gemmill on the edge of their seats. When the measure went down in defeat, the program coordinator for the Gwich'in Steering Committee in Fairbanks said she got 78 e-mails of congratulations from environmentalist supporters across the country.

Halibut season starts earlier, industry discusses year-round season
Usually around this time of year, halibut fishermen would just be starting out to catch their seasonal allocations. But amid concerns about market competition as Atlantic halibut farms spring up in eastern Canada, the international body that regulates Pacific halibut quotas began the season March 1, two weeks earlier than usual.

Airport monitored for signs of mystery illness
ANCHORAGE - The Anchorage office of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is on the lookout for a dangerous new strain of pneumonia. Medical staffers have begun meeting flights at the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport from Asian cities with possible links to the mystery illness.

U.S. Senate rejects ANWR drilling
WASHINGTON - The Senate today rejected oil drilling in an Alaska wildlife refuge, handing the Bush administration a defeat on one of its top energy priorities. Despite intense lobbying by pro-drilling senators and the White House in the hours leading up to the vote, Democrats mustered the support needed to remove a refuge drilling provision from a budget resolution expected to be approved later this week. The vote on an amendment offered by Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-Calif., to strip away the provision passed 52-48.

Security officials react to start of war with Iraq
FAIRBANKS - The start of the war against Iraq has heightened vigilance by Alaska homeland security officials, who said they've been preparing for possible terrorism attacks since Sept. 12, 2001. "Actually, right now what we are doing is what we've been doing," said Major Mike Haller, a spokesman for the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. "I would say we're doing it with perhaps a heightened effort. We're certainly sensitive to the fact that we've engaged the enemy."

State Briefs
Murder trial may not be held in Juneau; Search continues for missing brothers; Four hurt as speeding car hits school bus; Engine fire forces emergency landing; School bus service resumes after vandalism

Olson wins award
JUNEAU - Local author Wallace Olson was given the 2003 Outstanding Alaskana Award in recognition of his recently published book, "Through Spanish Eyes," by the Alaska Library Association at its annual conference in Juneau this month.

Volunteer training set at the Alaska State Museum
JUNEAU - The Alaska State Museum will conduct a training workshop for volunteers who help interpret Alaska history and natural history for museum visitors. The workshops begin Saturday, March 29, and continues Saturday mornings through April.

Singing through the decades
For professional singer Cynthia Rhys, studying music from movie musicals over the last century is an anthropological exercise. "We don't realize how much this art form has to do with us as an American culture," Rhys said in a phone interview this week from her home in Lenox, Mass. "What a powerful force of the American spirit music is for pulling people from all walks of life together."

Surreal Spaces
The day "Winesburg: Small Town Life" opened at Perseverance Theatre, designer Sheila Wyne, a tall, lean woman in her 40s, stood among a forest of huge weeds she had created, sipping a latte and discussing the importance of the surreal in her set design. "I am not a period piece designer. I don't know if (this set) is stylized, surreal or abstracted," Wyne said. "I want the audience to look on stage, recognize the bones, then finish it with their imaginations."

Museums offer spring break activities for students
JUNEAU - The Alaska State Museum and the Juneau-Douglas City Museum will offer spring break classes for students during the week of March 24.

New cable channel launches in Juneau
JUNEAU - A new pop culture and arts cable channel called "Trio" is now available in Juneau on the GCI cable system. Viewers can tune into Trio's daily schedule of popular films, fashion and music on Channel 206.

Kuhlke's 'Winesburg' an idiosyncratic jewel
Sherwood Anderson's "Winesburg, Ohio" has been a hot item lately. It bombed on Broadway back in '58, but an award-winning adaptation was staged in San Francisco in 2001, and it was turned into a musical at Chicago's Steppenwolf Theater last year.

What's happening
"Winesburg: Small Town Life," by Perseverance Theatre, shows at 7:30 p.m. Thursdays, 8 p.m. Fridays and Saturdays, 6 p.m. Sundays at Perseverance Theatre. Tickets $17 for adults, $13 for students/seniors on Thursdays and Sundays, $22 for adults, $18 for students/seniors on Fridays and Saturdays, available at Hearthside Books, at the theater box office at 364-2421 ext. 35, or online at www.perseverancetheatre.org. Runs until April 6.

'Number the Stars' a lesson in acting, history, morality
Clad in baggy costumes on a modest set built on the altar at Northern Light United Church, the young actors rehearse the play "Number the Stars" and in the process learn that being in a play isn't just about acting. It is about history and morality, according to J. Althea, Northern Light Junior Theatre director. "I tell them at least once or twice a week in rehearsal, 'Stand up for what you believe in,' " Althea said. "If the kids are armed with knowledge, they can stand up for what they believe in."

Youth concerto competition deadline nears
JUNEAU - The Juneau Symphony's 2003 Youth Concerto Competition will take place Saturday, June 1, at the University of Alaska Southeast. Applications to enter the competition are available from the Juneau Symphony office.

Best Bets: Razzle-dazzle, art and war
So, it is Tuesday when I am writing this and you will be reading it on Thursday. By Thursday, we will probably be shelling Baghdad, and you might not remember what the world was like today.

Movies where and when
"The Recruit," (PG-13) ends Thursday, March 20, final show at 7:10 p.m. at 20th Century Twin.

Boardwalk Boogie fund-raiser concert set for Juneau
JUNEAU - Organizers of the Boardwalk Boogie, a folk music event held annually in Pelican, are throwing a "Taste of the Boogie" fund-raiser with dinner, live music and a "twisted talent show" beginning at 6:30 p.m. Saturday, March 22, at the Elks Lodge. "The whole idea is that it will be a taste of the Pelican Boardwalk Boogie," said organizer Jenni Lefing.

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