Thursday, June 26, 2008

Bearfoot has treaded many miles since last in Juneau
The Anchorage-based Americana band Bearfoot has a new vibe since it last performed in Juneau, bassist Kate Hamre said.

Cheers to The Alaskan, rated one of 'Best Bars in America'
The Alaskan Hotel & Bar can easily qualify as one of the best bars in Juneau, but is it one of the best bars in America? Esquire magazine apparently believes so.

Marlintini's hosts weekly stand-up comedy competition
Marlintini's Lounge is hosting a weekly stand-up comedy competition beginning at 9 p.m. on Wednesdays at the Mendenhall Valley bar. Weekly winners will be able to compete in the finals on July 9 for a chance of winning $500 and opening for national comedian John DiCrosta on July 16 and 17.

50th anniversary of statehood program slated for June 30
John H. Venables of Haines will present the premiere showing of the third part of the "Journey to Statehood - Celebrating the 50th Anniversary of Alaska Statehood" program at 7 p.m. on Monday, June 30, in the Egan Room at Centennial Hall.

Deadline for JUMP Society's summer film festival looms
The submission deadline for the JUMP Society's 2008 Summer Film Festival is July 4. People can drop their films off at Lucid Reverie in the Emporium Mall downtown. Films should be 10 minutes or less. Submission guidelines are available at http://jumpsociety.com/jump-society-submission-guidelines/. The festival will play July 10, 11 and 12 in the Silverbow Backroom.

What's Happening
Thursday, June 26

Why France is the culinary capital of the world
"You know what the funniest thing about Europe is? It's the little differences." - John Travolta as Vincent Vega in "Pulp Fiction"

Get into the spirit of the summer season
Some have fizz. Most have pizazz. And, of course, they all have a certain buzz attached to them, and not just the type that imbibing can provide (in moderation, of course). The weather might not yet be sizzling hot, but these summer beverages certainly are.

'Ninja Gaiden II' perfect for attention-deficient gamers
"Ninja Gaiden's" action is an exaggerated dance of twirling steel and falling body parts. The amount of blood that sprays from your victims' bodies is ludicrous. Its female characters are as stereotypically well formed as its monsters are deformed. And the game's atmosphere is an almost incongruous mix of Japanese spirituality and sci-fi technology. So obviously, I love it.

The latest gadgets for home-surveillance
Keeping an eye on things at home while you are away is easy if you have broadband Internet and $300 to $400 for a surveillance kit.

A sarcastic solution to school woes
It should appear clear now to virtually everyone that the decision to build a second high school - rejected once by the citizenry, and foisted upon us again by the Juneau School Board and administration - was disastrously wrong.

Angry about energy costs in rural Alaska
Here we are, the United States, in an energy crunch, or so it would appear.

Cruise industry cleaned up its act
I was able to attend a tour last week on the Island Princess. It was an impressive enlightenment on how serious the cruise industry is in compliance with state regulations.

Outraged about U.S. plan in Iraq
I'm writing in response to an editorial, "Iraqi government signals desire for Alliance with U.S.," from the Washington Post, which ran in the Juneau Empire on June 16.

Former legislator Urion dead at 69
Rick Urion, a former Anchorage legislator who adopted Juneau as his home town, passed away Tuesday at age 69.

Juneau taxi owners press for idling fee
Sitting in an idling cab may soon cost you.

Correction
A photo caption on A2 Wednesday listed the wrong start time for Bearfoot Bluegrass camp kids' concert. The concert begins at 5:30 p.m. at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center.

ATVers shut out of North Douglas
Even after the plan was amended to answer neighbors' concerns, the Juneau Planning Commission denied a permit Tuesday night for an off-highway vehicle park in North Douglas.

Redfern files new Taku barge plan with Canadians
The owners of the Tulsequah Chief mine submitted a new plan to Canadian permitters last week that replaces a controversial amphibious concept vehicle for its Taku River barge operations.

Session back in Juneau July 9
The Alaska Legislature expects to take up energy relief payments soon after returning to Juneau following the Fourth of July holiday, say legislative leaders.

Judge says Richard Falcone can't defend himself in court
Richard Falcone was stripped of his constitutional right to represent himself in Superior Court against allegations he was drunk in a bar, after a Juneau judge ruled he was not fit to act as defense at trial next week.

Cottage housing not necessarily affordable
More than two years ago, the Juneau Assembly unanimously approved a cottage housing ordinance.

KINY, KSUP sale pending
Dennis Egan and Charlie Gray may be selling their radio stations, but they plan to stick around KINY and KSUP for the time being.

Repair crews begin to work on city streets
State highway crews will be repaving numerous Juneau streets over the next year at a cost of $500,000 to $1 million, the Department of Transportation and Public Facilities announced.

Photo: Pickin' up guitar
First, Jason Norris of Bearfoot Bluegrass teaches a class in mandolin Tuesday at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center. Second, Mike Mickelson, right, teaches abeginning guitar class during thebluegrass camp for kids. The camp isbeing led by members of the popularAnchorage-area Bearfoot Bluegrass. It continues today and concludes Thursday with a kids' concert at 3:30 p.m. at the Juneau Arts & Culture Center.

Around Town
Today

Photo: Marathon vacation
Runners from all over the world start a half-marathon race Wednesday in the False Outer Point parking lot. The runners traveled to Juneau on the cruise ship Westerdam. The race was part of the Great Alaska Maritime Marathon, a race broken into four distances: A two-mile run on the ship, a half-marathon in Juneau, a five-mile run in Sitka and a 10-km. run in Ketchikan. It is the second time runners have participated in the event, organized by John Bingham, a columnist for Runner's World magazine. Local runners also participated in the half-marathon.

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

Photo: Church taking shape
The Rev. George Silides talks about the construction of the new Holy Trinity Episcopal Church on Wednesday at the site. Workers started to erect the timber framework for the church on Saturday.

Around Town
Today

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

'Priceless' characters are both aware and deliberate
The perfect frothy fantasy for the obscene wealth gap era, "Priceless" (Hors de Prix) stars a gorgeous, cellophane-thin Audrey Tautou as Irène, a dedicated gold digger who finds herself accidentally mixed up with a penniless bartender.

'Love Guru' a waste of comic talent
Here's the good news: "The Love Guru" is better than "Semi-Pro." That is to say, there are twice as many funny moments in "Guru" as there were in "Semi-Pro"; there was exactly one such moment in "Semi-Pro."

Character carries 'In Bruges'
'In Bruges'

Juneau's Cinema guide
OPENING

Folkin' A's: not a bluegrass band
It's a Friday night at Marine Park, and The Folkin' A's are playing a gig. During the middle of the set, a slightly inebriated man approaches the stage area. He is wearing a backpack with a United States flag strapped to it and carrying a plastic bucket. He places his bucket down stage center, directly in front of the band, and proceeds to bang out rhythms using two wooden sticks.

It's time to celebrate the land of the free
The concept of "Land Of The Free" is getting more absurd all the time.

Sound Bites
KATY PERRY "One of the Boys" ★★

Sound Bites
EMMYLOU HARRIS "All I Intended to Be" ★★★

Video gamers get worked
Local eighth- to 12th-grade students were racking their brains out last week during the first half of the two-week video gaming workshop held at the University of Alaska Southeast.

Our pet affection: Samson, Pepper
It's easy to have a love affair with a pet dog or cat. As is said of dogs, what more loyal companion is there in this world?

Fourth of July parade entry forms due today
JUNEAU - Entry forms for the 2008 Fourth of July parade are available at the Juneau Visitors Center in Centennial Hall and the Mendenhall Valley library.

Rainbow for Girls president presides over assembly
JUNEAU - International Order of the Rainbow for Girls Grand Worthy Advisor (State President) Tabbitha Cobb will preside over the 46th Grand Assembly of Alaska International Order of the Rainbow for Girls today through Saturday at Floyd Dryden Middle School.

Prince of Wales resident shares original coleslaw recipe
Remember, it's all about the grill and your favorite side dishes.

Photo: And they're off
Kids start the potato sack race during Family Day at the Lake on June 14 at Twin Lakes.

Elizabeth "Bessie" Johnson Fred
Juneau resident Elizabeth "Bessie" Johnson Fred died June 20, 2008, in Mount Edgecumbe. She was 81.

Richard 'Rick' Urion
Douglas resident Richard "Rick" Urion died June 24, 2008. He was 69.

Matilda 'Tillie' Brown
Juneau resident Matilda Josephine "Tillie" Benson Brown died peacefully on June 22, 2008, at the Wildflower Court. She was 90.

My turn: Juneau road should be put to bed
It was encouraging to learn that building a road to the Katzehin River is not a priority for the Palin administration.

Outside editorial: Pakistan's nuclear outlaw hasn't admitted everything
A 1-kiloton nuclear bomb can fit inside a suitcase and could kill about 25,000 people if it exploded near the White House. A 10-kiloton explosive, which could be hidden in the back of a Chevy Suburban, could kill about 100,000 people and injure at least 150,000 more. Those grisly estimates are courtesy of Cham Dallas, director of the Institute for Health Management and Mass Destruction Defense at the University of Georgia.

Alaska editorial: State needs better plan for keeping fish stocks healthy
Last week's emergency decision by the Alaska Department of Fish and Game to close the Deshka River king salmon fishery to sport fishing is the latest example that the state needs to do more than simply fish for answers to low salmon return numbers in area rivers.

Consequences of abstinence-only policy
So all we know for sure is that something happened in Gloucester, Mass.

Alaska editorial: More energy relief should go to poor
Gov. Sarah Palin's latest proposal for helping Alaskans with energy costs calls for anyone who has lived in Alaska at least six months to receive a $1,200 check.

Custer's Last Stand and American patriotism
Wednesday marked fifth anniversary of an iconic moment of American history: Custer's Last Stand, the culmination of Lt. Col. George Armstrong Custer's disastrous attack on a coalition of Lakota Sioux, Cheyenne and Arapaho Indians camped on the Little Bighorn River. Nearly every American knows the image: On a dusty, bloody hill, Custer and the final survivors of his battalion fight to the last against merciless hordes of Indians who press closer at every moment.

Planning commission considers ATV park
JUNEAU - Planning commissioners got a lesson Tuesday night on the physics of sound as they considered a proposed off-highway vehicle park at the Lower Fish Creek Rock Quarry.

Court: Kohring must surrender to officials
JUNEAU - A Superior Court judge said former state Rep. Vic Kohring must surrender to the U.S. Marshal Service in Anchorage on Monday.

Delta High School reports large theft
DELTA JUNCTION - Alaska State Troopers are investigating the theft of at least $80,000 in electronics from Delta High School.

Discarded tomatoes used as animal feed
KENAI - The staff at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage has figured out a way to use all those tomatoes that were chucked during the recent salmonella scare.

Lawnmower driver charged with DUI
NORTH POLE - Alaska State Troopers used lights and sirens to apprehend a North Pole man accused of leading them on a slow-speed chase that covered several lawns.

Superintendent of Ketchikan jail retires
KETCHIKAN - A man who headed the Ketchikan Correctional Center for 20 years has retired.

Shooter wounds girl in Alakanuk
JUNEAU - An Alakanuk man is in jail on assault charges after Alaska State Troopers say he got drunk and fired a gun at several people, injuring a 14-year-old girl.

Eielson Visitor Center opens to the public
ANCHORAGE - The Eielson Visitor Center in Denali National Park opened this month to the public. The center is on the Denali Park Road, 66 miles from the park entrance.

State to evaluate oil and gas facilities
JUNEAU - The state is embarking on a $5 million project to evaluate all of its oil and gas facilities, from the North Slope pipelines to loading terminals in Valdez.

Man indicted on manslaughter charge
FAIRBANKS - A 53-year-old Fairbanks man has been indicted on a charge of manslaughter following a fatal traffic accident.

Midnight run set for Saturday
Like salmon returning to their original spawning waters, costumed fools will once again descend in Juneau.

Sports in Juneau
UPCOMING EVENTS

PERFORMING IN PRISON: Both sides of the bars
When Buddy Tabor got the call to perform at Folsom Prison, he didn't get all puffed up about it. It wasn't Carnegie Hall or "Prairie Home Companion" calling. It was a doctor who worked with murderers, thieves and other violent offenders, who wanted to bring music into the prison.

Rural fuel costs on the rise
ANCHORAGE - The poorest families in rural Alaska will be paying much more for power and heat in the coming year than their urban counterparts, according to university researchers.

Court slashes damages award in Exxon oil spill
WASHINGTON - The Supreme Court on Wednesday slashed the $2.5 billion punitive damages award in the Exxon Valdez disaster to $500 million, a decision that could have broader implications for limiting how much courts can order businesses to pay.

Alaska politicians react to U.S. Supreme Court ruling on punitive damages
Public officials in Alaska are reacting strongly to the U.S. Supreme Court's decision Wednesday to slash the $2.5 billion damage award to Alaska fishermen to $508 million, nearly 20 years after the Exxon Valdez disaster.

Russia plans Arctic training exercises
MOSCOW - A senior Russian general said the military must train in the Arctic to uphold the country's claim to vast Arctic resources.

Ruling stuns spill victims
ANCHORAGE - Sylvia Lange took a 40-minute shower to calm down.

Poor run brings subsistence restriction
FAIRBANKS - It looks like this year's king salmon run on the Yukon River could be one of the worst, forcing federal fisheries managers to curtail subsistence fishing.

Man catches shark in Cook Inlet
KENAI - After nine years fishing for halibut in Lower Cook Inlet, the biggest fish John Vargo landed weighed 100 pounds. So, for him, reeling in a 7-foot, 4-inch-long salmon shark with a leg jig, an old reel meant for salmon trolling, and a little piece of herring was a once-in-a-lifetime experience.

Rise of Heroin
ANCHORAGE - With one pinch of the needle, Shenna Bolger was hooked on the warm, euphoric wave that washed over her as the black tar heroin coursed through her blood.

Survey shows Alaskans are smoking less, getting fatter
ANCHORAGE - Alaskans are smoking a lot less than they were five years ago, but a federal survey shows residents of the 49th state are slightly less healthy overall than the rest of the country.

This Day in History
In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

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