3 weeks' notice
Sarah Palin's two and a half years as governor have been marked by policy peaks, instability among her departmental leaders, and an irrepressible popularity that took a hard turn toward celebrity absurdity in the months since the 2008 presidential campaign wrapped.

Local courts last to modernize files
Around the state, in places such as Anchorage, Tok, Naknek and Unalakleet, a person hardly has to go to court anymore to dig up information on a case. Dockets, calendars, costs, attorneys - it's all available online.

Photo: Whip splash
Ryan Fagerstum holds on tight to a water inner tube Sunday as he is flung around from behind a boat on Auke Lake. Fritz Moser, who was driving the boat, said he has a fun time trying to whip his nephews off the tubes as they try to hang on. Moser was at the lake with his family, along with more than a dozen other people who were swimming, using jet skis and boating in the nice weather. The National Weather Service calls for more clear skies today and highs in the upper 70s.

Photo: Capital city celebrations
Fireworks over Gastineau Channel illuminate downtown and the flotilla of boats during the annual Fourth of July fireworks show.

Local leaders react to Sarah Palin's resignation blindside
There was praise and criticism in Juneau Friday for Gov. Sarah Palin and her surprise decision to leave the governorship early.

Photo: Star tribute
Glenn Merrill, center, dances along with a dance group that acted out the Michael Jackson song, "Thriller" during a concert in the park Friday. Members of the group said they were planning the routine a few weeks before Jackson died and thought it would be a nice tribute.

Locals react
As the news broke across Juneau of Gov. Sarah Palin's resignation, residents responded with surprise, empathy and happiness. Tourists and locals alike were speaking in coffee shops, bars, gift shops and street corners in the capital about the surprise departure Friday.

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

Around Town
Today, July 6

Capital likely to stay put under Parnell
Local leaders are welcoming Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell as the state's new governor, saying he should be good for the capital city and the state.

Who is Sean Parnell?
Lt. Gov. Sean Parnell had an unremarkable first year in office, loyally supporting Gov. Sarah Palin.

Photos: 50 years of STATEHOOD
Hundreds gather outside the Juneau Douglas City Museum Saturday morning to witness the 49-star flag-raising ceremony commemorating Alaska's 50th anniversary of statehood.

Around Town
Today, July 5

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

Statehood Coaching Champ
A 70-year Douglas resident was recently inducted into the Alaska High School Hall of Fame for his more-than 50 years of playing and coaching basketball in Alaska as well as winning the first high school basketball state championships in 1959.

Consortium, others host community health policy conference
JUNEAU — The SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium Steps to a Healthier SE Alaska and WISEWOMAN Women’s Health programs are teaming up with the Alaska Division of Public Health and Premera Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alaska to offer a community health policy conference Aug. 12-14 at Centennial Hall in Juneau. You must register by Saturday, July 11, in order to attend this conference.


Senior menu for the week of July 6 to 10
Monday, July 6

Modifying your home for a lifetime
The program on home modifications held as part of Juneau's Home Show on Feb. 28 was such a success that a repeat event is being planned.

Anna Macnak, a Juneau resident and 2001 Juneau-Douglas High School graduate, received her Bachelor of Science in nutrition on June 22 from Bastyr University in Seattle, Wash. She was selected for a dietetics internship at Texas State University at San Marcos during the 2009-2010 academic year, after which she will sit for the national dietetics exam.

Thanks for helping at Jensen-Olson Arboretum invasive weed pull
The Juneau CWMA would like to thank local volunteers who came to the Jensen-Olson Arboretum on June 27 to help pull invasive weeds. A big thanks also to Capital Disposal for disposing of the weeds and to Merrill Jensen for providing a tour of the arboretum grounds after the weed pull.

I got rhythm
God only knows how many summers have come and gone before this one came along.

Photo: Doing the disc
From left, newly matched Big Sister Toren and Little Sister Kendall take a break from a game of disc golf on June 20 at Aant'iyeik Park's 18-hole course near Auke Village Recreation Area. Big Brothers Big Sisters of Juneau thanks Play It Again Sports, who donated discs, for the opportunity to try disc golf.

Photo: REACH breaks new ground
Community members attend a formal ground breaking ceremony for the fourth REACH assisted living home at 3510 Mendenhall Loop Road. Construction is scheduled to be completed in seven to nine months.Present are REACH Board of Directors, wearing hard hats from left, Bill Hauber, Rita Bowen, Mindy Gross, John Osborne, Kristine Lewis and Micki Jackson; the family of a major contributor to the project, Annie and Ellie Fitzjarrald; REACH staff; and neighbors and members of the community.

Fry Days: For love or the halibut
I'm a big sucker for good fish 'n' chips, which is what originally brought me to Fry Days fish 'n' chips trailer in the Western Auto parking lot.

Pets of the week: Shy terrier and sweet bunny seek good homes
Shy is the type of gal who knows what she wants. This 5-year-old terrier is a sweetheart who loves comfy couches, good food and excitement. She has a happy go lucky attitude and enjoys long strolls through the woods.

Local group resolves on No New Plastic
For one week, seven Juneau families decided to not bring any new plastic into their homes.

Juneau resident shares Crispy Date Bars recipe
The bait is in the water, can you pull up a fish recipe to share with our readers. Ask Auntie Emo is where we help you find that lost or forgotten recipe and share family favorites.

Hank Harmon Rifle Range undergoes maintenance
JUNEAU - For the next two weeks, grading and drainage maintenance activities will be conducted at the Hank Harmon Rifle Range. Limited closure, approximately half-day, of the long range will occur to correct settlement and roadway softness at the long range access gate. A longer closure of the short range will occur to correct settlement, general surface drainage and grading.

Widowed Persons Program to hold monthly brunch
JUNEAU - The Widowed Persons Program will meet for their monthly brunch at noon today in the Nugget Room at the Baranof Hotel.

Head Start accepts applications for 2009-2010 year
JUNEAU - Tlingit & Haida Head Start is now accepting applications for the 2009-2010 school year.

City gets new chicken pox immunization rule
JUNEAU - Children attending kindergarten through sixth grade need two doses of chicken pox immunization to attend school, according to the Juneau Public Health Center.

SERRC, TLC, put stimulus funds to work in Juneau
JUNEAU - SERRC - Alaska's Educational Resource Center and The Learning Connection recently received workforce development stimulus funds for its summer youth employment program, a division of the agency's JobX program.

Thanks for attending the marching band 'Long-timers' concert
The Juneau Volunteer Marching Band would especially like to thank Sen. Dennis Egan, Rep. Beth Kerttula, and Rep. Cathy Muñoz for the their participation in our "Long-timers" concert Sunday Their recollections of people and events from fifty years ago were especially interesting and quite poignant.

Senior Information and Caregiver Resource Center moves
JUNEAU - Southeast Senior Services' Senior Information and Caregiver Resource Center has moved to the St. Ann's Center, 419 Sixth St.

Southeast Senior Service offers seniors transportation
JUNEAU - The Care-A-Van Transportation Service is operated by Southeast Senior Services, a division of Catholic Community Service. Care-A-Van is designed to assist senior citizens (age 60 and older) and people of any age who are unable to use the Capital Transit bus due to a disability. Although the Care-A-Van is primarily funded through a contract with the city of Juneau, the service also receives financial support from Medicaid Waiver revenues, a grant from the Alaska Division of Senior and Disabilities Services, and passenger contributions.

Hemenway, Rice to wed
Emily Hemenway, of Elfin Cove, and Dustin Rice, of Fairbanks, will marry at 12:30 p.m. July 8, 2009, in Elfin Cove. A reception will immediately follow on the beach.

Levitt, Snyder wed
Cheryl Levitt and Darren Snyder, of Juneau, were married June 12, 2009, at the University of Alaska Southeast Noyes Pavilion in Juneau.

Runge, Peterson wed
Desiree' Kathleen Runge, of San Diego, and Harold Gene Peterson, of Webster, Iowa, were married June 26, 2009, at Skater's Cabin on Mendenhall Lake in Juneau.

Henkins, Hayes to wed
Candra Henkins and Edward Hayes, of Juneau, will marry July 10, 2009, in a private family wedding. A reception will follow at Marlintini's Lounge

Gard, Eadington wed
Greta Gard, of Juneau, and Michael Eadington, of Crystal Bay, Lake Tahoe, were married May 23, 2009, on the Big Island of Hawaii, on the beach of a freshwater lagoon, at Kiholo Bay. The couple combined their names, becoming the Gard-Eadingtons. Their reception luau was held south of the ceremony in Kona, at a sacred old Hawaiian village, on the point of the King Kamehameha Hotel.

Nance celebrates 90 years
Lola Nance will celebrate her 90th birthday with a casual visit and light luncheon from 1 to 3 p.m. Saturday, July 11, in Smith Hall at Chapel by the Lake. Friends and well-wishers are invited to join the family in bringing well wishes and playing vicious games of Scrabble. Call Janet at 789-5266 for further information.

Fagerstroms celebrate 60 years
Juneau residents Kent and Donna Fagerstrom will celebrate their 60th wedding anniversary on July 8, 2009. Sweethearts then and sweethearts now, they were married July 8, 1949, in Lynden, Wash.

Kathleen Ann Ramm
Former Juneau resident Kathleen Ann Ramm died June 27, 2009, in Seattle, Wash., due to complications with diabetes. She was 62.

Empire editorial: Alaska better off without Sarah Palin
So long, Sarah. It's been an interesting ride, albeit a short one.

Outside editorial: Cap-and-pay-off: Not the time to ignite a trade war
President Obama has been about as enthusiastic as one can be supporting the leviathan Waxman-Markey energy bill, which the House just passed, despite the bill's web of mandates, subsidies and regulations. But following the squeaker of a House vote, there was one provision that even Mr. Obama couldn't stomach: a requirement added shortly before the vote that, in 2020, the president begin slapping tariffs on goods from countries that do not limit or price their carbon emissions. He's right to be skeptical.

Big question marks haunt Palin's future; open the door to criticism
Does Sarah Palin have a political future?

Honor their service
My childhood friend of 31 years visited my home on base, in Quantico, Va., a few months after I gave birth to my first baby. As we took a leisurely stroll one evening through the lingering humidity of early September, I explained to her how different military life is from the world in which we grew up in San Francisco. We passed rows of colorful houses on the tree-lined, manicured blocks and gazed at the playgrounds around the neighborhood, ready to welcome the children of the officers who live there. American flags hung from virtually every front door. The occasional "My daddy fights for your freedom" bumper sticker adorned some vehicles. As we looped around the bend toward my house, my friend turned to me and asked, "How do you accept what your husband does for a living?"

Toe toon
This week's toe toon.

Who will stand with Iranians for their freedom?
WASHINGTON - As Iranians took to the streets to protest a fraudulent election last month, braving tear gas, batons and bullets, pressure mounted on President Obama to take a tougher stand against the Islamic Republic's repression of peaceful dissent. Some said the president's statements were too soft. Others argued that Obama should refrain from picking sides, lest he present a pretext for hard-liners to label the protesters American stooges.

Coast Guard plucks French kayaker from the Bering Sea
ANCHORAGE - A U.S. Coast Guard helicopter has rescued a French kayaker who became fatigued in the Bering Sea during his quest to circumnavigate the world.

Small wildfires leave haze over Fairbanks
FAIRBANKS - Alaska officials say smoke from a handful of wildfires left a haze over Fairbanks.

Search for man overboard suspended
ANCHORAGE - The U.S. Coast Guard suspended its search in Alaska's Aleutian Islands for a man reported overboard from a commercial fishing vessel.

Flaming toilets cause $30K in damage
JUNEAU - Police are seeking tips in an arson investigation of three port-a-potty fires that caused an estimated $30,000 in damage Friday morning.

Mechanics' strike continues at Denali
ANCHORAGE - A strike by mechanics, radio technicians and warehouse workers who work at Denali National Park continued through the Independence Day weekend.

Buses break down in mechanics' strike
ANCHORAGE - At least eight tourist buses broke down over the weekend at Denali National Park, striking union members said.

Winds push wildfire haze into Denali
ANCHORAGE - Denali National Park and Preserve was covered in haze Sunday from wildfires in Alaska's Interior.

Yukon Flats refuge land exchange rejected
FAIRBANKS - The Fish and Wildlife Service has rejected a proposed land exchange at the Yukon Flats National Wildlife Refuge.

FEMA visit brings hope to Eagle
EAGLE - Residents in the city of Eagle are finally getting some relief after a springtime flood that damaged homes and businesses.

FEMA visit brings hope to Eagle
EAGLE - Residents in the city of Eagle are finally getting some relief after a springtime flood that damaged homes and businesses.

Spiffy clashes with sentiment at cemetery
FAIRBANKS - Some relatives with loved ones buried at a Fairbanks graveyard are concerned by what they consider to be overzealous caretaking.

Property assessments challenged in Seattle
SEATTLE - Challenges to the assessed values of property in the Seattle area have nearly tripled in the past year, The Seattle Times reported Sunday.

Man fatally struck by train near Talkeetna
ANCHORAGE - A 42-year-old man is dead after being struck by a train as he was trying to move a dog from the track.

Permanent fund cleared for dividends
The Alaska Department of Law has determined that a permanent fund dividend can be paid this year, despite concerns about its legality that led to legislative hearings earlier this year.

Palin keeps low-profile after surprise news
Outgoing Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin on Saturday laid the groundwork to take on a larger, national role after leaving state government, citing a "higher calling" with the aim of uniting the country along conservative lines.

Observers:Resignation cuts losses
JUNEAU - Ever since Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin returned from the presidential campaign trail, many Alaskans felt her heart wasn't in the job.

FBI says Palin is not under investigation
ANCHORAGE - An FBI spokesman took the unusual step Sunday of declaring that Gov. Sarah Palin is not under investigation, an announcement prompted by rumors to the contrary on many Web sites.

GOP strategists left baffled
WASHINGTON - If Sarah Palin is stepping down as governor because she has national political ambitions - and she did not say she intends to run for president - her move did nothing to shake what GOP pollster Whit Ayers called "the 'lightweight' monkey on her back."

Library sign a lesson in environmental art
HOMER - By the time the new Homer Public Library sign is installed this month, it will not only represent the town's hallmark coastal beauty, it will contain it.

Poor Alaska salmon run threatens treaty
FAIRBANKS - The number of king salmon that reach the Canadian border might not satisfy a treaty agreement between Alaska and Canada despite massive cuts in subsistence fishing up and down the Yukon River in Alaska.

Fort Wainwright soldiers return
FAIRBANKS - Hours before her daughter officially returned home from a yearlong deployment to Iraq, Carmen Lewis was anxiously waiting in a near-empty hangar.

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