Alaska Digest

Posted: Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Arctic development conference planned

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KOTZEBUE - The fifth Arctic economic development conference will be held July 9-11 in Kotzebue, Northwest Arctic Borough Mayor Siikauraq Whiting and North Slope Borough Mayor Edward Itta announced.

The meeting brings together hundreds of residents, community leaders, industry and development interests to discuss needs and opportunities for economic growth in the two boroughs.

This year's theme is "Architects of Change: Taking Responsibility for our Future." The event will feature reports from the 2005 summit as well as discussions of development issues important to both boroughs.

Topics include balancing resource development with health, environment and social impacts, as well as the importance of healthy communities and community development.

Fireworks suspected in park brush fire

ANCHORAGE - Illegal fireworks may be to blame for a brush fire that burned in Kincaid Park.

Fire officials throughout Southcentral and Interior Alaska warned that fire danger was high.

Kincaid Park, just south of Anchorage's international airport, has an extensive trail system and is the venue for cross country skiing and running events.

The fire Monday grew to 300 feet by 100 feet before it was extinguished, said fire department spokesman Tom Kempton, and was worsened by the recent dry weather.

UAF men's basketball coach steps down

FAIRBANKS - The University of Alaska Fairbanks men's basketball coach has resigned, citing off-court incidents by players as one of the reasons.

"With the number of things that happened this year, I didn't feel like it was a good idea for me to continue," said Frank Ostanik, who rose from being a local high school standout to assume the college job.

Ostanik has been associated with the Nanooks team for 16 years, first as a player, then as an assistant coach, and for the last three years, as head coach.

The resignation was announced in a four-paragraph press release issued by UAF.

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