FIRST FRIDAY on Thursday
The monthly First Friday gallery walk will be held on Thursday this week as to not hinder Friday's Fourth of July celebrations. Many of the downtown galleries will be hosting artist openings on Thursday prior to the city fireworks display scheduled to begin at 11:59 p.m. that evening.

(Mostly) all-female band to burn it up on the Fourth
LuLu and the Aqua Nets are returning to Juneau this Fourth of July for a special appearance at the Hangar on the Wharf on July 3, 4 and 5. They'll also be headlining the infamous Douglas street dance on the Fourth after parade festivities.

Tail Blazers to visit Marlintini's
Later this month, Marlintini's Lounge will host a weeklong party with the Portland Tail Blazers female revue direct from Oregon. Nightly shows will be held beginning at 9 p.m. Tuesday, July 22, through Saturday, July 27.

Fiddling poet to visit Juneau
Though former Juneau resident Ken Waldman's "Are You Famous?" isn't officially due out until Aug. 15, that isn't keeping the fiddling poet from getting a head start with the new book.

Governor seeks nominations for art awards
Nominations for the 2008 Governor's Awards for the Arts & Humanities are being accepted through Aug. 29 for individuals or organizations that have distinguished themselves in service to the humanities.

What's Happening
Thursday, July 3

Add tools to your wine-drinking experience
With any hobby or passion, there are all sorts of gadgets and gizmos to make you feel better about your obsession. Trust me - it is no different with wine.

Get medieval with 'Lord of the Rings: Conquest'
While LucasArts continued the "Star Wars Battlefront" series on its own with the PSP-only "Renegade Squadron," the developer of the first two games in the series, Pandemic, is currently working on the true spiritual successor using one of the few franchises with an equal amount of cachet - "The Lord of the Rings."

Bugged by ads? Block 'em
In a previous article I discussed greyware, a category of viral activity that is considered "legitimate" Internet fare. Click a greyware link and the next thing you know your mailbox is flooded by dozens, if not a hundred, messages a day. How can you stop it?

Register to vote
There is a critical difference between eligible voters and registered voters.

Pollock politics
Thank you for the June 23 article on the Bering Sea pollock fleet and the impact on Alaska's precious salmon resources. Alaskans are facing huge salmon catch reductions due to limited resources. Yet, in one year, the factory trawler industry catches 122,000 incidental king salmon and more than 700,000 other incidental salmon species. When the bycatch is pulled in, they are dead or dying and are thrown overboard.

City struggles in search for skilled workers
The city of Juneau is having a difficult time filling some upper-level, technically trained positions, according to city staff.

Tulsequah Chief mine tug tips on Taku River
On a narrow, tricky section of the Taku River, a tug escorting a barge to the Tulsequah Chief Mine got caught in a whirlpool Tuesday and tipped far to one side before righting itself, causing concern to onlookers and state regulators.

EPA studies cruise ship discharges
Several cruise ships will be releasing their wastewater this week into Skagway waters, where that's not usually allowed. Federal and state environmental agencies say it's for a good cause.

Celebrating statehood: Hurley's grand golden return
Katie Hurley, 87, believes her greatest contribution to Alaska statehood was her enthusiasm.

Becker honored by parade distinction
Mary Becker was surprised and thrilled when asked to be the grand marshal for the Douglas Fourth of July Parade.

Alaska journalist named Palin communications chief
Gov. Sarah Palin hired experienced Alaska journalist Bill McAllister to be the new director of her rapidly changing communications office.

Redfern's new Taku plan requires new permit
State regulators Thursday restarted the permit process for the would-be operators of the Tulsequah Chief mine to ship supplies along the Taku River in icy seasons.

Photo: Timely bloom
Jennifer Davis of the city's landscape division waters the plants Thursday in the Egan Drive median downtown.

Fred Meyer recalls beef possibly tainted with E. Coli
Attention Fred Meyer shoppers: Check your fridge for possibly tainted beef.

Around Town

Photo: Feels like July
A floatplane takes off Wednesday in Gastineau Channel as people in a sailboat make the most of a warm, sunny day. Today's weather forecast calls for partly cloudy skies with isolated showers in the afternoon and highs around 71.

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

Photo: To the top
Cyclist Frank Rue rides his bike Wednesday up Fish Creek Road. It takes a bit of work to pedal to the top, but Rue said he is able to attain speeds of about 45 mph on the way down.

Around Town

Police & Fire
Reports from police, fire officials and state troopers:

A savvy sci-fi Pixar comedy
The late, great Stanley Kubrick ("2001:A Space Odyssey") used to say that if you can turn off the sound and still follow the story, you've made a film, but if you black out the picture and can still follow the story with only the sound, you haven't.

'Wanted' is boldly ridiculous
N BC's Conan O'Brien loves to break out the "What if they mated?" machine often on "Late Night;" the incredible technology allows O'Brien to show us what the baby would look like if Celebrity A mated with Celebrity B. The resulting photo is always ghastly, which is of course the point. I bring this up because I suspect if you were to throw directors John Woo and McG into O'Brien's machine, the resulting picture would be the spitting image of Timur Bekmambetov.

Juneau's Cinema guide

Fire on the Fourth: celtic rock, acoustic rock
Bagpipes aren't quite the same tradition as baseball and barbecue when it comes to the Fourth of July, but the Scottish aerophones are rapidly establishing themselves as one in Juneau.

Low expectations a prerequisite for adult bluegrass camp
Children and young people interested in bluegrass in Alaska have a good deal. Every summer they can hang out and learn bluegrass with Bearfoot, one of the coolest and hottest bands anywhere.

Watching karaoke is like watching a car accident
Watching karaoke can be like watching a car accident in slow motion: It's usually bad and hard not to watch.

All or nothing: The Portuguese taught me well
If there is anything I have learned in the past six months, it is that Portuguese people don't do anything halfway.

Faith Lutheran Church to host Vacation Bible Camp July 14-18
JUNEAU - Faith Lutheran Church will hold its annual Vacation Bible Camp from 9 a.m. to noon July 14-18 at 2500 Sunset Drive.

Eaglecrest Ski Area joins Juneau Community Foundation
JUNEAU - This spring, Eaglecrest Ski Area joined a growing list of funds at the Juneau Community Foundation. The Friends of Eaglecrest Fund, a newly established agency fund, will initially be used to build a public use cabin in honor of Matt Brakel, who was killed in an avalanche while snowboarding on Mount McGinnis in 1999. The cabin is funded by donations from the Alaska Community Foundation and the Machamer Charitable Fund.

Hydaburg Cooperative Association to hold annual culture camp
HYDABURG - Hydaburg Cooperative Association's annual Culture Camp will be held July 21-25, with the Haida Festival Day being on July 26.

Thanks for helping make Dads on Duty fundraiser a success
Auke Bay Co-op Preschool thanks everyone who helped make our recent raffle fundraiser, Dads on Duty, a great success. Donations from business sponsors Domino's Pizza, NorthStar Trekking, Four Seasons Tours, Juneau Steam Boat Company, ERA Helicopters, Temsco, Orca Enterprises, Allen Marine Tours, Alaska Travel Adventures, Alaska Pacific Bank, Alaska Glacier Seafoods, Avon, Blockbusters, Bjorn Dihle Photography, The Creating Place, Creative Memories, Eagle Crest, El Sombrero, Fireweed Chiropractic, Foggy Mountain Shop, Full Circle Produce, Glacier Gardens/Yard Doctor, Gourmet Alaska, Grandma's Feather Bead, Gross Alaska Theater, Hangar on the Wharf, Hearthside Books, Juneau Electronics, Juneau Limousine Services, Juneau Racquetball Club, Our Backyard, Pavitt Health and Fitness, Pietan Photography, Rejuvenation, Rie Munoz Gallery, Southeast Interiors, Specs in the City, Sydney's Closet, The Plum Tree, Gold Belt, Valley Paint, Xandi's Treas ure Chest, WOW Jewelry, Juneau Ski Club, Juneau Empire, Papa Murphy's, and Imagination Station are greatly appreciated.

Thanks for contributing to Juneau Soccer Club
The Juneau Soccer Club wishes to publicly thank those organizations and individuals who contributed to the success of our two recent tournaments - the "Sister City Showdown," June 6-8, with teams from Whitehorse, and the "6v6" tournament, May 29-31, for all Juneau youth of elementary and middle school age.

Thanks for supporting Perseverance Trail
Trail Mix Inc. thanks all those who contributed to the wonderfully successful rededication of the Perseverance Trail on June 21.

Miller, Fink to wed
Yvonne Marie Miller and Daniel Alton Fink are engaged would like to announce their engagement. They plan to marry in June 2009 in Juneau.

Photo: Dedicated dads
Dads work for six hours as part of Auke Bay Co-op Preschool's annual Dads on Duty fundraiser.

Casey Stuart Loofbourrow, of Juneau, was among 504 students at Eastern New Mexico University to make the 2008 spring semester dean's honor roll list. To be eligible, Loofbourrow had to complete a minimum of 15 hours for the semester while maintaining a 3.25 grade-point average.

Camp DAMP to host local, Lower 48 artists
Juneau dancers are getting ready to celebrate the 16th great year of dancing, music, family and friends at Southeast Alaska's premier contra dance retreat, Camp DAMP, to be held July 11-13 at the Eagle River United Methodist Camp, 28-mile Glacier Highway.

Pets of the week
Spunky, sweet, classy animals need homes

Photo: Wal-Mart donates to The Learning Connection
Wal-Mart General Manager Kai Kauai, holding check, presents The Learning Connection staff with a $5,000 check during a family night on June 26 at The Learning Connection at Gruening Park. The Learning Connection provides adult education,family literacy programs, computer classes and job assistance services for free at four locations in Juneau. The funds will be used to help fill the gap left by a 20 percent cut in federal funding.

Guthrie Center proves worth a quick visit
After spending three days in Portsmouth, N.H., we left and headed west on Highway 101. We stopped at Wilmington, Vt., and enjoyed a good potroast lunch in an old tavern that is still decorated in 1950s-60s style. From Wilmington, we drove to Bennington, Vt., and started south on Highway 7 through Vermont to Stockbridge, Mass.


Glennis Roberta Gray
Former Juneau resident Glennis "Chris" Roberta Gray died June 3, 2008, at Providence St. Vincent's Hospital in Beaverton, Ore. She was living in Bay City with her daughter and son-in-law. She was 84.

My turn: Support for road based on myths
There are myths and other aspects to the so-called Juneau Access Project.

My Turn: Juneau to benefit from budget decisions
Juneau is truly one of the most beautiful state capitals in the nation. It is a vital community blessed with unparalleled natural beauty, history and culture. I understand the economic importance of the capital to Southeast Alaska and I am committed to keeping the capital in Juneau.

Alaska editorial: Exxon should quit stalling and pay up
It's been a bitter business for the 32,000 or so plaintiffs in the Exxon Valdez case. For almost two decades.

Outside editorial: Medicare cuts signal the need for an overhaul
Senators on Capitol Hilldeparted for July 4 picnics last Friday with an important unfinished piece of business hanging over the heads of doctors and the millions of seniors who depend on Medicare.

Outside column: 'The Constitution is not a suicide pact'
"The Constitution is not a suicide pact." After 9/11, that saw - originally coined by Supreme Court Justice Robert Jackson - was dusted off. Lately, it's been getting a heavy workout.

Who's winning at the All-Star break?
We've reached politics' equivalent of the All-Star break. The presidential nominations are lined up. The edge is off the campaigns for the Fourth of July. And the fall election remains many games away.

Grant period ending for home program
JUNEAU - A loan program offering assistance for down payment and closing costs for low-income home buyers is scheduled to end its application period on Aug. 31.

McMurren seeks continuance in child molestation trial
JUNEAU - McMurren, 60, Thursday asked Juneau Superior Court Judge Patricia Collins for a continuance on a trial scheduled to begin Monday. He stands accused of molesting three children under the age of 8 over a period of years.

Falcone sentenced to 70 days for conduct
JUNEAU - Superior Court Judge Philip Pallenberg on Thursday sentenced John Falcone, 40, to serve 70 days in prison following Tuesday's jury conviction that Falcone was drunk and disorderly last winter.

Youth services vans' tires vandalized
JUNEAU - Tires on six vans used to transport summer program participants were slashed.

Thousands haven't filed for tax rebate
ANCHORAGE - About 10,000 retirees and disabled veterans in Alaska haven't filed for their this year's tax rebate from the federal government.

Homicides drop this year in Anchorage
ANCHORAGE - Homicides have fallen this year in Anchorage, compared to last year.

Clean-water initiative to appear on ballot
ANCHORAGE - The Alaska Supreme Court ruled Thursday that an initiative to regulate or restrict pollution from mining can be placed on the ballot in August for voters to consider.

Cubs moved away from Russian River
KENAI - Two yearling brown bear cubs were caught at the Russian River campground and moved to an undisclosed part of the Kenai Peninsula.

Trial set for accused gas station robber
JUNEAU - A judge Thursday scheduled two days in October for the trial of accused armed robber Erick Waters.

Fairbanks cops suing city, police chief
FAIRBANKS - Two Fairbanks police officers who think they were demoted unfairly are suing the city of Fairbanks and the police chief.

Power outages affect hundreds in Sitka
SITKA - An animal likely caused hundreds of homes in the Sitka area to lose power for nearly an hour.

Deck the halls with bouquets of roses
'Tis the season. And no, I do not mean Christmas in July - though many retail stores are celebrating that way these days - but a different beast all together. 'Tis the season for weddings.

Photo: Midnight racers
Janice Sheufelt rides during the 24 Hours of Light bicycle race on June 28 in Whitehorse, Yukon Territory.

Sports Digest

Acclaimed photographer Mark Kelley has captured hundreds of dramatic Alaska images over the years, but last year the black bears at the Steep Creek viewing area near the Mendenhall Glacier inspired fresh amazement.

FAA working to lure more air traffic controllers to Alaska
ANCHORAGE - The Federal Aviation Administration is trying to fill badly understaffed air traffic control centers in Alaska by offering bonuses of tens of thousands of dollars to experienced workers willing to move to the 49th state.

Young taps campaign to pay aide's lawyers
With an election-year corruption investigation looming, Rep. Don Young has tapped his campaign war chest to pay not only his own million-dollar legal tab but also to hire lawyers for his campaign manager, who is also under FBI scrutiny.

Stevens, Palin deny rift as they vow energy relief
ANCHORAGE - U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens sought to minimize reports of friction between him and Gov. Sarah Palin as she joined him Wednesday at a press conference laying out Stevens' proposals for relief from high energy prices.

Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. to boost pay for investment manager
The Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. has determined that a salary of between $200,000 and $300,000 may not be enough to attract a new chief investment officer to help manage the $37 billion fund.

Groups say they will sue cruise lines
ANCHORAGE - Two Alaska groups say cruise ships are denying state inspectors access to pollution control equipment and personnel, and they intend to sue offending companies.

Anchorage actor Sanders wins award
ANCHORAGE - When Cedric Sanders attends future reunions at East High, he'll have a lot to talk about. Since graduating in 1999, he has honed his acting chops in college, New York and Hollywood.

UnitedHealth cuts '08 outlook as premiums slip
MINNEAPOLIS - Health insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc. on Wednesday said it will pay $895 million to settle lawsuits over its stock option practices, and it warned that weaker business and higher costs will cut into profits this year.

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