Friday, May 22, 2009

New fiction always coming in at the library
We're constantly adding new fiction for adult readers in every genre, from westerns and science fiction to romances and mysteries. Here are a few that caught my eye this week.

Arts & Culture Calendar
ART, EVENTS, & PERFORMANCE

Haines Brewfest
Ah, spring! It means a great thing is about to happen for anyone who enjoys their beer - Haines Brewfest. The 17th annual Great Alaska Craft Beer and Home Brew Festival, or Brewfest as it's commonly called, takes place Friday and Saturday at Dalton City - a faux town - on the Southeast Alaska State Fairgrounds in Haines.

Browns' 'Angels' fares better in Howard's hands than 'Da Vinci'
Some things are simply unavoidable. Traffic in Los Angeles and rain in Juneau come to mind. Likewise, comparisons of "Angels & Demons" to "The Da Vinci Code" are automatic. What's interesting about Ron Howard's second movie based on Dan Brown's two best-selling and Catholic-upsetting novels is that everyone who sees the movie goes into it with a different mindset.

Pearl Django: Adding to the gypsy jazz lexicon
Although the name Django Reinhardt might not be immediately familiar to American audiences, many music lovers can probably call to mind the unique sound that Reinhardt and his band made famous: Imagine what you might have heard while strolling the streets of Paris in the 1930s and you should come pretty close.

Checking in with the subdudes
New-Orleans based band the subdudes will be the final act for this year's Jazz & Classics concert series, performing at 8 p.m. Sunday at Centennial Hall. The band has a sound that's hard to corral into any one genre, and includes elements of blues, funk, Cajun, R&B and roots.

Take in 'Glowworm' before it's too late
The coming weekend is your last opportunity to see "O Lovely Glowworm" on the mainstage at Perseverance Theatre in Douglas. These will be the final performances of the ultimate show of the season, and I recommend them to you. It is challenging, heady material, performed very strongly by a well-rehearsed and talented cast.

Student artist Forest Davis
Grade: Kindergartner

Community Day includes Quick Draw
The Juneau Arts & Humanities Council will sponsor the fourth annual Quick Draw on Saturday as part of Community Day on the Univeristy of Alaska Southeast Campus. This fast-paced event will allow the general public to see the creative process at work.

Sexton's latest collection traces Alaskan landscape
In his latest collection, former Alaska State Writer Laureate Tom Sexton deftly guides us through a magical yet familiar landscape, with microscopic attention to detail and imaginative journeys inspired by natural objects. "For the Sake of the Light" contains 53 new poems, each with their fingers tracing the contour of the land as if reading a Braille history of life in places of rugged beauty, like Alaska and Maine. Also included are a fine selection from Sexton's seven previous collections, making this edition a very practical Sexton Reader and an unrivaled gift for the poet in your life.

Youth Concerto applications due
The 2009 Juneau Symphony Youth Concerto Competition will take place June 10, at Northern Light United Church. The competition is open to musicians from Southeast Alaska in grade 11 (during the 2008-09 school year) or younger.

Holst school to perform Saturday
The Janice Holst School of Dance will present their spring production Saturday with performances at 3 and 7 p.m. at the Juneau Arts & Humanities Council.

Head tax intended to create new projects, keep waters clean
Recently Allen Shattuck wrote a letter to the editor printed in the May 14 edition of the Juneau Empire, taking me to task for promoting cruise ship taxes. Specifically, Mr. Shattuck stated his belief that my personal goal was to drive cruise ships from Southeast Alaska, and this action causes lost jobs, and lost business and government revenue.

It's ridiculous to only drug test some students and not all
I am writing about the drug testing in our high schools. I am only eight years removed from high school and feel that I still know how the students would feel on this issue today. I think I have some good points here and it would be nice to get people to think about how this should be done, if it is going to happen.

Palin red-lights energy funds
Gov. Sarah Palin on Thursday vetoed portions of the state budget, including controversial federal energy funds that are part of President Barack Obama's stimulus package.

The art of recovery
Gabriel Trujillo, an artist and former crab fisherman, turned to the bottle when a couple of his friends died in a fishing accident in 2004.

Correction
An editing error in Ben Brown's Wednesday column in the Juneau Empire referred to Juneau Sen. Dennis Egan as Bill Egan. Bill Egan is Dennis Egan's father.

Tasty little devil
Hikers who have suffered the wrath of thorny devil's club may find a poetic pleasure in fighting back with a frying pan and spatula. The shoots are ready to eat.

Mendenhall Mall manager has big vacancy to fill
Department store Gottschalks is bankrupt and will close its doors in a week. Mendenhall Mall manager Larry Bauer is about to have a 36,400-square-foot hole to fill.

Extended superintendent search yields 8 more candidates
Five more weeks of searching and a salary bump worth up to $40,000 produced eight more candidates seeking to be the top administrator of the Juneau School District.

Charter school to offer bus service
One way or another, the Juneau Community Charter School will have bus service next school year, but it's still up in the air as to whether the buses will be headed to its current rented classroom space on Fourth Street downtown, or to district-owned classrooms near Juneau-Douglas High School.

Despite sun, Juneau trails still host snow, mud
Numerous sunny days have blessed Juneau as of late. But the warm weather makes it easy to forget that many of Juneau's trails aren't completely thawed yet, and they could pose a danger to unprepared hikers.

Permanent Fund rebound may clear way for dividend
Rebounding stock markets have brought billions back to the Alaska Permanent Fund, which is likely to boost dividends in future years. It also might ensure residents receive a dividend this year.

Flyfishers tie up meeting season
This is the end of the season for the Raincountry Flyfishers. It's a fact that might come as a surprise, but the logic behind it is understandable. Why spend time in meetings when one can be out fishing instead?

Marching for a cure for MS, raising awareness
The MS Walk, organized by the Capital City Rotaract, returns to Juneau on May 23. The group is inviting everyone to participate in the one-mile walk and five-kilometer fun run to raise money for multiple sclerosis research and to heighten awareness about the incurable disease.

Photo: Study at sea
U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Healy departs Juneau on Wednesday for a three-month Arctic West 2009 deployment. The deployment supports the ongoing Bering Ecosystem Study, amulti-year project sponsored by the National Science Foundation that studies theecological processes of sea ice as it retreats through the Bering Sea.

Photos: Jazz & classics
Anat Cohen plays clarinet as Joe Martin plays bass with the Anat Cohen Quartet Thursday at the State Office Building during the Brown Bag Lunch concert. The next Brown Bag will be at the Nugget Mall today at noon.

Photo: Strolling through summertime
Phaedra Dowling walks passed a planter box full of colorful tulips near Egan Drive and Main Street Wednesday.

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

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

Around Town
Thursday, May 21

Around Town
Today, May 22

Bruce Allen Gleason
Juneau resident Bruce Allen Gleason died of a heart attack May 15, 2009, in Orofino, Idaho. He was 79.

Donna Lee Isaak
Longtime Juneau resident Donna Lee Isaak died May 3, 2009, at home in Douglas. She was 72.

Betty McNeven
Longtime Juneau resident Betty McNeven died May 16, 2009, after a long, courageous battle with cancer, her family said. She was 69.

Alaska editorial: Judge Stewart is worth honoring
We smile every time we think of Justice Tom Stewart, the late Juneau icon who was secretary of Alaska's Constitutional Convention, served in the Territorial House and the Alaska Senate, and spent a decade and a half as Superior Court judge.

Alaska editorial: Is there a double standard on the Iditarod? Of course
Some back-of-the-pack Iditarod mushers say they're not treated the same as the experienced, more competitive racers. We hope they're right.

Alaska editorial: One complaint against Palin missed a point
An investigator made short work last week of two ethics complaints against Gov. Sarah Palin. His conclusions made sense, given how the cases were framed.

My Turn: Bus tours and 12th street
I have seen and heard some bogus statements and undue simplifications made about tours, tourists and motor coaches using Calhoun and 12th Streets.

It's too soon to offer an assessment on Obama
Instead of looking for what the Obama administration accomplished in the first 100 days or what it might achieve in the next 100, we should focus on the longer term. The 1,000-day mark interests me far more than the sprouts of the administration's early seeds.

My Turn: Striving to be 'landless' no more
When reading Kate Golden's article "'Landless' Natives try for redress," I recognized the same old comments by the same old landless representatives. I realized how hopeless that situation is unless a major change takes place. This is, of course, in regard to the congressional bills introduced on behalf of the landless communities; the five Southeast Alaska towns left out of most of the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act.

Time for drug treatment to rattle its saber
In an effort to recast substance abuse as more of a public health problem than a crime, the nation's newly appointed drug czar has called for an end to talk of a "war on drugs."

Palin signs 2 bills in Southeast
WRANGELL - Gov. Sarah Palin has signed two bills, one extending the boating safety program and the other temporarily suspending the experience cap for teachers.

Applications being accepted for Juneau Farmer's Market
JUNEAU - Attention backyard gardeners, local farmers and bakers: Applications are now being accepted for the Second Annual Juneau Farmer's Market and Local Foods Festival to be held Aug. 29.

North Slope oil tops $60 per barrel
ANCHORAGE - Drivers might not like it, but there is some good news for Alaska's main source of government funding.

Bad gasoline delays Wet Dogs
KODIAK - There's been a crimp in the schedule of five people blazing the trail for a 2,000-mile personal watercraft race from Anchorage to Bristol Bay.

State labs authorized to confirm swine flu cases
ANCHORAGE - Alaska officials reported both state public health laboratories have been authorized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Atlanta to issue final confirmations of swine flu cases.

Lottery winner assault leads to 3 years
ANCHORAGE - The man who assaulted the winner of Alaska's biggest lottery has been sentenced to three years in prison.

Air Force moving F-15s from Elmendorf
ANCHORAGE - Elmendorf Air Force Base is losing its F-15 fleet.

JPD investigates alleged sexual assault
JUNEAU - The Juneau Police Department is investigating a sexual assault that allegedly occurred in the early hours on Wednesday.

Man found guilty in old abuse case
ANCHORAGE - An Anchorage jury has found a 51-year-old man guilty of sexually abusing the young daughters of two women he had lived with years ago at separate times.

Woman dies of injuries in motorcycle crash
ANCHORAGE - The family of an Anchorage woman injured in a Seward Highway motorcycle crash reported she has died.

Colo. climber missing on Mount McKinley
ANCHORAGE - An aerial search has started for a Colorado man missing during a solo climb of Mount McKinley.

Man pleads guilty to robbing Fairbanks restaurant
FAIRBANKS - A Fairbanks man serving a 12-year federal sentence for bank robbery faces additional time in prison on state charges.

2 rescue woman hanging on bridge
ANCHORAGE - Anchorage police want to find and thank a Good Samaritan who helped rescue a woman who tried to hang herself from a bridge.

Palin picks memoir collaborator
NEW YORK - Sarah Palin has picked a collaborator for her memoir.

Flooded villages seek help feeding dogs
FAIRBANKS - Yukon River villages ravaged by flooding this month are sending out appeals for help for their four-legged companions.

Union works urge boycott of hotel
ANCHORAGE - Union workers at the Hilton Anchorage hotel rallied in front of the establishment and called for a boycott of the business.

Anchorage homeless rate nearly doubles
ANCHORAGE - Municipal officials say the homeless rate has nearly doubled in Anchorage in the last two years.

Palin to visit upstate NY community
AUBURN, N.Y. - Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin will help a central New York city celebrate 50 years of Alaskan statehood.

Alaska's unemployment rate drops
JUNEAU - State labor officials say Alaska's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate has fallen to 8 percent for April.

Senior saviors
For a moment, it was twice as magical.

JDHS geared for state
The Juneau-Douglas High School track and field team is toting 23 individual athletes to the 2009 4A State Championships at Lathrop High School today and Saturday. The odds for a state title are strongly against both sides this year, but the girls - who placed second at state a year ago - are still anchored by junior distance runner Leah Francis and the three state titles she is defending.

State a win away
The Juneau-Douglas High School girls soccer team began the season as a young, inexperienced group of unfamiliar names who were politely described as a "rebuilding club" with little chance at defending their state title.

Boys can make state with win
The Juneau-Douglas High School boys soccer team will host their lone Southeast Conference rivals from Ketchikan today and Saturday to end their regular season and, hopefully, clinch their ticket to state.

JDHS sluggers close year at KayHi
The Juneau-Douglas High School softball team embarks on their final roadtrip of the year to Ketchikan this morning with seven open game slots technically remaining on their regular season schedule, and an open mind towards what the weekend may bring.

Fun is the only cure for purple nurples
So long sports fun. We've had a good run. Those were some sweet times shared here in Juneau.

Sports in Juneau
UPCOMING EVENTS

Halibut charter operators mull legal challenge
KETCHIKAN - Southeast Alaska fishing charter operators may file a legal challenge to a new federal rule that would limit their clients' catch to one halibut per day.

Alaska Democrats name Williams new executive director
ANCHORAGE - An environmental activist, attorney and former Clinton administration official has been picked as the new executive director of the Alaska Democratic Party.

State senators plan hearings on renewable energy solutions
FAIRBANKS - State senators on energy committees will conduct hearings next week in interior Alaska as part of a plan to create an Alaska energy policy.

Mine opponents enlist 'Deadliest Catch' crabber
ANCHORAGE - Opponents of the proposed Pebble Mine in southwest Alaska have recruited the skipper of a high-profile crab boat for their campaign against the development.

Photo: Bear-y friendly
This undated photo released by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game shows Charlie Vandergaw with a brown bear at his property near Alexander Creek, Alaska. The 70-year-old retired science teacher who has been feeding bears at his property in the Susitna River valley about fifty miles northwest of Anchorage, Alaska, for 20 years was charged with 20 counts of illegally feeding game.

Despite woes of economy, Fort Knox mine plans expansion
FAIRBANKS - The Fort Knox Mine outside Fairbanks is planning major exploration and expansion in 2009 despite the woes of the economy, according to the mine's general manager.

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