This letter is in reference to the editorial written by the publisher on Sunday and also to give thanks and show our appreciation to the Alaska Marine Highway for being so accommodating to the softball players needing to attend the 2001 Dustball Tournament in Whitehorse next weekend.
I appreciate the work Capt. Capacci and Barbara Fairbanks have done to accommodate us. When I called three weeks ago and asked about what may be happening with the Columbia, I received no animosity, just straight-up information, and believe me, I expected defensiveness after the slew of calls received by them and the reservation agents.
I then asked for help since the majority of softball players already had made reservations on the day ferry for the middle of July and because the ferry system has been so accommodating in the past. It took a week of hard work, but Capt. Capacci came through and found us a ferry. Then, when I asked for two trips on the same day (due to it being the LeConte), he came through again. He then turned me over to Barbara Fairbanks who asked me to get the word out to ball players and she would do her best to get us on the two runs.
Two weeks and a lot of phone calls and e-mails later, we filled the first run and partially filled the second run. This could not have been done without the cooperation of ball players, the ferry system and these two very patient people. I cannot tell you how much we appreciate the long hours and hard work that Capacci and Fairbanks did in order to work with this Southeast community. I understand this has been frustrating for a lot of people, but think about what they are going through also. We just need to go to a tournament, they have been juggling ferry runs for a year and near as I can tell have been doing a damn good job.
In regards to the editorial from the publisher, this information is incorrect. As far as I know one team is choosing not to attend Dustball due to the frustration of all of this, most had confirmed reservations, but chose to cancel them. I spoke to the publisher and discussed what has been done to make sure we get to Whitehorse. He was just repeating information he had been told, no fault there.
When I first sent information out to teams, I asked for patience. I understood that would not come easily, but almost all the people I spoke with were very appreciative of the effort made by the Alaska Marine Highways. We thank you very much and apologize for any inconvenience to others.
Traci Gilmour, Dee Swavely, Teri Maxwell,
Lee Lewis, Tina Racy, Staci Augustus, Jeannie Mungle,
Rena Balzer, Kym Mauseth, Kris Weixelman,
Rae Lynn Lewis, Julie Morris, Carrie Cummings