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Friday, May 14, 2010

Local band Salsa Borealis keeps dancers on their toes
In a small community like Juneau, the creative contributions of individuals can be dramatic, in many cases altering the artistic or musical culture of the town in lasting ways.

All Things Eagle and Raven opens May 15 at the city museum
The Juneau-Douglas City Museum will open its summer exhibit, All Things Eagle & Raven, on Juneau Museum Day, Saturday, May 15, with a free public reception from noon to 5 p.m. The exhibit is a celebration of these two birds and their connection to our lives.

Celebration volunteer meeting tonight
Sealaska Heritage Institute will hold a meeting to recruit volunteers for Celebration 2010, from 5 to 7 p.m., tonight, May 13, at Centennial Hall in the Egan Room.

Public is invited to the JAHC scholarship auditions
On May 15, the annual auditions for the Juneau Arts & Humanities Council's Fine Arts Scholarships and the Advanced Artist Achievement Award will take place at the UAS Auke Bay Campus.

Longtime JDHS band director retires
"When I wake up in the morning, I'm excited about the day. I can't wait to get to hear my students play and just do all I can to make it be a little better. My goal everyday is just to improve the players and improve their attitudes about life and music. That's what drives me and what gets me up every morning."

'Iron Man' hasn't lost his shine in part 2
A couple years ago, when I first began browbeating Juneauiites with my movie reviews via the Juneau Empire, I had started to worry after several months of writing that I was too hard to please. My initial worry when I started writing about the big screen was that I would praise everything and lose credibility. Instead, to my own surprise, I found myself panning films seemingly every week.

Hansel & Gretel too grim to enchant
Perseverance Theater ends its 2009/2010 season with a folk musical rendition of "Hansel and Gretel." I went to the theater in excited anticipation built from all the hype surrounding this production and left sorely disappointed. Though the play affords a feast of visual delights for the eye and showcases stellar acting talent, it suffers from a stale storyline, dull pacing and a flat musical score.

The story and the tellers
Three-year-old Wilder Dillingham interrupts his father's phone conversation to ask him a pressing question.

Alaska Crafter's 'I'll Ask-A-Crafter'
What are pinking shears? -Perturbed in Pink

Former folk fest guest artists to play Saturday
Ginny Hawker and Tracy Schwarz, guest artists from the 1995 Alaska Folk Festival, will perform one show Saturday at Centennial Hall. The pair, from Tanner, West Virginia, have been playing together for 16 years, and share a love of music of the rural south, though they've approached the genre from different angles.

Music 'Raises the Roof' at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center
The Juneau Concert Band, Thunder Mountain Big Band, and The Spinnin' Pig will join forces with the Juneau Arts & Humanities Council and others to "raise the roof" at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center and celebrate National Barbeque Month on Sunday, May 16.

Library's new fiction is in
Here's a taste of the new fiction for adult readers on the shelves.

Improvements to Statter Harbor?
Paving over an additional 3.9 acres of intertidal area from Bay Creek to Statter Harbor was not what many expected when they voted for improvements to Statter Harbor. Apparently the general public was unaware a parking lot with over 200 spaces would be the main improvement, while the De Hart's floats, judged in 2008 to be at the end of their useable life, remain.

Commissioner, you are right about Race to the Top
I laud Education Commissioner Larry LeDoux for opting out of competing for the Race to the Top grant. To quote one educator, Race to the Top is a "carrot that feels like a stick." It is a bad idea to turn educational reform into a competition, and is bound to be a grand failure like its expensive predecessor, No Child Left Behind.

'We are at the least very concerned'
Two full columns in the May 6 Empire took on AEL&P's proposed 22 percent rate hike. One was Tim McLeod of AEL&P, while the other was Bill Burk, founder of Juneau Peoples' Power Project - the result of a 2008 avalanche wipeout of a row of power lines. When read side-by-side, these two pieces make for delicious journalistic electricity.

AEL&P seeks rate increase for cruise ships
Alaska Electric Light & Power has filed with the Regulatory Commission of Alaska to increase the rate for a major cruise line that uses excess power produced by the company's hydroelectric projects.

'Sale' signs less prevalent in tourist district
A crackdown on illegal advertising aimed at tourists in the state's port towns seems to be working in Juneau, as the season opened with virtually no "discount" signs in the downtown tourist district.

Climate camp discusses local effects of warming
A two-day conference on the potential effects of climate change in Southeast Alaska continues today as about two dozen scientists and community leaders meet in Juneau.

Photo: A Raven's eye view
Ellen Carrlee of the Alaska State Museum and conservator Ron Sheetz apply a restoration coating to the totem pole at the Governor's Mansion on Thursday. The totem was originally inspected and foundstructurally unstable in July 1997, raising safety concerns. In November of that year, it was removed, and conservator Sheetz finished restoring it in May 1998. The totem was carved between 1939-40 by Klukwan's Charles Tagook and Saxman's William Brown. It was raised at the mansion in 1941.

Science behind the Spring King Derby
The bottom line - if you'll pardon the pun - of king salmon fishing isn't the way you bait the hook, it's knowing when and where to go.

Photo: Survival suit training
U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officers Luke Nisbet, top left, and Jordan Roy, top center, instruct sixth-graders from Floyd Dryden Middle School in teamwork and swimming with survival suits on in Juneau's harbor on Tuesday. The program is coordinated with the Alaska Marine Safety Education Association and the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary.

Photos: Big shoes to fill
Ken Anderson gives a presentation Tuesday to Harborview students.Anderson also gave presentations to Auke BayElementary School and Gastineau Elementary School.

Photo: Three-wheeling
A forklift is hung up on power lines near the rock dump Thursday afternoon.

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

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

Southeast suicide prevention task force holds first meeting
SITKA - A new Southeast Alaska Suicide Prevention Task Force met for the first time on April 29 and 30 at the Sheet'ká Kwáan Naa Kahídi in Sitka. The task force will develop a regional suicide prevention plan that can be taken back to each of the communities for implementation.

Photo: Lunchtime running near Mendenhall River
A lunchtime running group follows the new airport dike trail next to the Mendenhall River on Monday. The area to the left will be filled starting in about two weeks from material dredged from the float plane pond. Construction continues on the Juneau International Airport's safety area improvements on both ends of the runway.

What is protein?
So far in this series on nutrition we've talked about, among other things, the importance of making permanent changes to our diet, basing our food choices on whole, unprocessed foods, and the fact that neither carbohydrates nor fats are inherently good or bad.

Daniel Chmielowski
Lifelong Juneau resident Daniel Chmielowski died May 3, 2010 at home. He was age 34.

Outside editorial: Take that, Supreme Court
When the Supreme Court irresponsibly overturned a 60-year-old ban on spending by unions and corporations in political campaigns, Congress was faced with a choice. It could pass legislation purporting to overturn the decision, inviting another invalidation. Or it could work within the confines of the ruling to limit its negative consequences. In general, legislation proposed by Sen. Charles E. Schumer, D-N.Y., and Rep. Chris Van Hollen, D-Md., follows the second course, but it would still strike a blow against special-interest influence in elections.

Should people who work past retirement age be exempted from Social Security taxes?
Social Security tax penalizes workers

Winter gut: Summer exposes our extra pounds
I should have known my recent kayaking trip to Berner's Bay was doomed from the start.

Moving our nation beyond petroleum
A golden opportunity is bubbling up beneath that undersea volcano of oil spewing thousands of gallons per day into the Gulf of Mexico. We have a chance to truly move our country, as BP says in its ad campaigns, "beyond petroleum." Despite the spill's devastation, President Barack Obama continues to claim we must push forward with more offshore drilling - albeit with stronger safeguards - if we want to increase our energy security.

My turn: Beckett and Me
Last year, my wife and kids talked me into going with them to the movies to see "Marley and Me," which I expected to be just more silly, sentimental sweepings and swill from Hollywood - not my kind of film at all. But it was even worse than that. At the end the dog dies.

Day of the Dolly Varden
"Pray for rain." I keep hearing that phrase like a CD skipping on a dirt road. And lately Mother Nature has obliged. But, please, pray for rain.

David Stone to talk on mining, milling technology
JUNEAU - Mining Historian David Stone will present "The Impacts of Mining and Milling Technology" at 7 p.m. Thursday, May 20, in the Hammond Room at Centennial Hall.

Juneau Rowing Club hosts open house at Aurora Harbor
JUNEAU - The Juneau Rowing Club will host an open house at 11 a.m. at the Juneau Rowing Club Floats at the north end of Aurora Harbor.

Governor declares Safe Boating Week May 16-22
ANCHORAGE - Governor Sean Parnell has proclaimed May 16-22 Safe Boating Week in Alaska.

Chilkat River Walk to be held in Haines May 15
HAINES - The fourth annual Chilkat River Walk from Klukwan to Haines takes place on Saturday, May 15, to raise awareness about breast cancer and breast health.

Annual fly casting clinic 'switches' it up
This year's annual fly casting event at Twin Lakes will feature both something new and something old.

Hey Juneau, how does your garden grow?
Members of the Southeast Alaska Master Gardeners are preparing for the upcoming Southeast Alaskan Gardeners' Conference and Garden Tours which will run May 20-23 at the University of Alaska Auke Lake campus.

Weekly Whale Feature: 'Spot'
Spot is a fun whale to watch. The black spot on the right side of the fluke is where this whale gets its nickname.

Photos: Before ... and after
Before: Erik Boraas stands on top of a mound of rock that slid onto the Perseverance Trail in April. The slide resulted in a two-day trail closure while crews with Trail Mix Inc. and the City and Borough of Juneau worked to clear the slide.

Still room in women's outdoor workshop
JUNEAU - There's still slots to snag for this year's Becoming an Outdoors-Woman workshop, a three-day seminar focused on women's outdoor skills happening May 21-23 at Echo Ranch.

Audubon bird walks continue in May
JUNEAU - The Juneau Audubon Society is continuing its bird walks in May.

Wild shots
Submit your wild shots

Southeast lingcod sport regulations set
JUNEAU - State Department of Fish and Game officials announced the lingcod sport fishing seasons, bag and possession limits, annual limits and size limits for lingcod in the Northern Southeast Alaska Area. In this area the following regulations apply:

Tides
Today, May 14

JPD to raise money for Special Olympics in Torch Run
JUNEAU - The Juneau Police Department is taking up the challenge of raising money for the Special Olympics by hosting a 5-kilometer run called the Torch Run at 10 a.m. on Saturday at Twin Lakes.

Spring King Derby standings
Place Name Weight Date Time Weigh-in station

Locals invited to Primrose Festival at arboretum
JUNEAU - Organizers at the Jensen-Olsen Arboretum are inviting the public to enjoy a little spring color at this year's Primrose Festival.

Woman upset with Troopers' response to gun
FAIRBANKS - A Fairbanks woman is demanding a face-to-face apology from two Alaska State Troopers who detained her for 20 minutes after they spotted her walking down a road with a gun in her hand.

Bartlett earns CAP accreditation
JUNEAU - Bartlett Regional Hospital has been awarded accreditation by the Accreditation Committee of the College of American Pathologists (CAP), based on the results of a recent onsite inspection.

Military parents get help in child custody fights
JUNEAU - State policymakers want to make sure military deployments aren't used against Alaska's servicemen and servicewomen in child custody cases.

Water rises on Yukon River near Ruby
FAIRBANKS - Rising water on the Yukon River was threatening several cabins and fish camps between Ruby and Galena.

Research station in Fairbanks holds open house
ANCHORAGE - The Institute of Arctic Biology's large animal research station in Fairbanks is holding an open house.

Alaska closes another king salmon fishery
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Department of Fish and Game shut down commercial king salmon fishing in part of the upper Cook Inlet between the Chuitna and Susitna rivers.

Town hall meetings set for veterans
ANCHORAGE - Alaska veterans will have several chances to talk about their concerns about service in the state.

Murkowski launches YouTube segment
JUNEAU - U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski is reaching out to constituents via YouTube.

Alicia Roberts Medical Center wins rural health award
KLAWOCK - The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium Alicia Roberts Medical Center in Klawock was honored with the Outstanding Rural Health Organization Award during a luncheon April 28 in Anchorage.

Fairbanks woman sentenced for stabbing new mom
FAIRBANKS - A woman described by a prosecutor as a "sadistic, monstrous predator" has been sentenced to 18 years in prison after pleading guilty to charges stemming from the stabbing of a new mother.

Alaska man gets 20 years for sex abuse
FAIRBANKS - A Fairbanks man who pleaded guilty to sexual abuse has been sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Prosecutors reviewing arrest of Anchorage man
ANCHORAGE - The state Office of Special Prosecutions is reviewing the arrest of an Anchorage man who stopped breathing while in handcuffs.

Denali geologist dies while leading field trip
ANCHORAGE - A state medical examiner will investigate the death of a Denali National Park geologist who succumbed while leading a school field trip.

Bears, Baker blank Kings
Juneau-Douglas raked 14 hits, including two round-trippers, and the Crimson Bears buried the punchless Ketchikan Kings 10-0 on Thursday at Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park.

Matthew Maka nominated for Army game
Juneau-Douglas senior-to-be Matthew Maka has already gotten a jump start in motivation for the 2010 Crimson Bears football season.

JDHS favored in Region V
With a bid to the state meet at stake, runners from prep teams all over Southeast Alaska will converge at Thunder Mountain High School for the Region V Track & Field Championship Meet, and the Crimson Bears will be waiting.

Baseball Bears happy for homestand
There's no place like home - as long as the weather holds up, that is.

Wild times for Alaska indoor football team
ANCHORAGE, Alaska - The Alaska Wild's head coach is AWOL, the team still doesn't have an owner, it owes money to both the arena it plays in and the arena it practices in, the general manager job is open, the Indoor Football League is worried that the team may not have enough players for Sunday's home game and the league commissioner compared the franchise's turmoil to a chicken with its head cut off.

Falcons vex Vikings
On a soggy afternoon at Adair-Kennedy Memorial Park, the Thunder Mountain baseball team won in front of its home crowd as they rolled over the Petersburg Vikings 10-4 on Wednesday.

JDHS sweeps soccer matches
Coming off the May 7 14-0 girls' soccer rout at the hands of Juneau-Douglas, Thunder Mountain narrowed the deficit by more than half but still fell to the Crimson Bears 6-0 on a rainy Wednesday night at TMHS.

Photo: Hooptime boys finish 11-9
The Hooptime eighth-grade boys finished their year 11-9, highlighted by competing in four tournaments. The team went 1-4 in the Wasilla/Palmer tournament, 3-0 in the Haines tournament, 4-2 in the Michael Jackson Memorial Tournament in Juneau, and 3-3 in the Saint George/Las Vegas tournament.

Alaska Natives still unrecognized in state song
JUNEAU - Some Alaska Native leaders said they are disillusioned with their lawmakers after a third attempt failed to add a verse to the state song mentioning indigenous people - even as the Legislature turned Groundhog Day into Marmot Day and the governor signed a bill Wednesday making the Alaskan malamute the state dog.

2 refuges to get bird-friendly wind power
ANCHORAGE - Work is under way to install nearly a dozen odd-looking wind turbines at two remote Alaska refuges important to hundreds of thousands of migratory birds.

Whale carcass spotted on Glacier Bay beach
ANCHORAGE - A marine mammal observer aboard the first cruise ship of the year spotted a dead humpback whale washed up on a beach in Glacier Bay National Park, a park spokeswoman said Wednesday.

Court OKs approval of Shell Arctic drilling plan
ANCHORAGE - A federal appeals court Thursday removed a legal challenge standing in the way of Shell Oil's plans to drill wells off Alaska's shore this summer.

AFN convention to look at future of Alaska villages
The Alaska Federation of Natives announced Wednesday that this year's convention, to be held in October in Fairbanks, will focus on "Village Survival" as this year's theme.

Alaska Municipal League warns of 'gag' initiative
A ballot measure facing Alaska voters in August claims to be opposed to corruption, but Alaska Municipal League's Kathie Wasserman says it is actually an attack on citizen participation in their government.

Alaska sending oil spill gear to Louisiana
ANCHORAGE - Cargo planes from Elmendorf Air Force Base are flying equipment to New Orleans to help clean up crude oil in the Gulf of Mexico.

Alaska justice steps away from abortion lawsuit
ANCHORAGE - Alaska Supreme Court Justice Morgan Christen has removed herself from hearing an abortion case.

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