Sunday, October 19, 2003

In the Stacks: DVD and video titles pop up at the library
A little fun, a little education - our non-fiction videos and DVDs have something for everyone.

Realities of the big city
Responding to the letter by Ms. Quick, "Who would want the Kmart building," I must say I agree with her.

Writing in support of recalling Murkowski
A recall of Governor Murkowski is the best news I've heard since he entered office. It gives us a glint of hope. I'll signa petition.

Unemployment up slightly in September
Unemployment in Alaska was at 6.8 percent in September, about one-10th of 1 percent higher than in August, according to the state Department of Labor. That number, however, is down three-10ths of a percentage point from a year ago.

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

Boarders and skaters compete at the pipeline
Amid a cloud of reverberating music, skateboarders slammed their boards against the floor of the Pipeline skate park to show their appreciation of good tricks during a competition Saturday. This isn't your dad's golf game with whispering commentators. Twenty-four skateboarders and seven in-line skaters from age 12 to adults paid $10 to compete in the event at the city-owned, volunteer-built skate park off Glacier Avenue, near Egan Drive and Mendenhall Loop Road.

Photo: Joint center for recreation, readiness
Ginger Bean of Miller Construction of Juneau surveys the site of the joint University of Alaska Southeast Student Recreation Center and Alaska Army National Guard Readiness Center, near the Auke Lake campus on Saturday.

Around Town
Around Town is a listing of local nonprofit events.

J.R. 'Russ' Gibson
Former Juneau resident J.R. "Russ" Gibson, 86, died Sept. 19, 2003, in Coeur d'Alene, Idaho.

Michilina 'Michi' Stephenson
Juneau resident Michilina "Michi" Stephenson, 54, died from complications of respiratory failure on Oct. 8, 2003, at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle, Wash.

My Turn: The right attitude with mental health
National Mental Health Awareness Week was observed last week in Juneau as local mental health agencies held community open houses at the Juneau Alliance for Mental Health, Green House, the Glory Hole and a candle light vigil at Polaris House. Health professionals say many Americans (as great as one in five) are burdened with conditions that affect their mental health, yet relative few acknowledge or seek help.

My Turn: Bob Robertson might have been right after all
R. E. (Bob) Robertson might have been right. The founder of one of Alaska's oldest and most prestigious law firms - Robertson, Monagle and Eastaugh of Juneau - was a delegate to the Alaska Constitutional Convention in 1955-56. He resigned three days before the convention ended because he disagreed with some features and was reluctant to vote against the entire Constitution.

My Turn: $51 from 384 Juneauites would re-open Glory Hole
The folks at The Glory Hole are dreading the return of Juneau's "real" fall weather. So far, Juneau has been blessed with a beautiful October. But what is to come? We are very close to reopening our doors. We've raised enough money to open for two of the remaining 2 1/2 months of 2003. But we don't want to reopen now and close again in December, when the weather is sure to be worse.

Outdoors Digest
Outdoor news in brief.

Off the beaten path
The U.S. Forest Service has a new public service cabin on a popular and historic canoe route and fishing area that follows a series of lakes across Admiralty Island. The log cabin is one of seven cabins and nine shelters available to the public along the route, which was originally developed by the Civilian Conservation Corps during the 1930s. The Territorial Sportsmen originally constructed some of the cabins along the route in the early 1960s, said Mike Dilger, a cabin and trail crew leader for the Forest Service.

Southeast Wild: Glacier visitor center makes a fine fall spot
Now that the tour ships are gone and the good weather is rapidly leaving us, you're probably thinking about all the places you intended to visit this summer but just never got around to. Well, don't panic, it's not too late. Right now is a wonderful time to spend an hour strolling around the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center, soaking up what nature still has to offer.

Out & About
Upcoming local outdoor events.

Web links
Web sites of interest to local outdoors enthusiasts.

From the Sidelines: Juneau football program earns respect
They came to Anchorage Football Stadium on Saturday with a chance to make history. They're still not sure what conference they'll play in next year, if any. They were the original self-funded team in the state - in any sport - raising their own money because the local school district couldn't afford to add new activities to the budget when the team was formed 14 years ago.

Dream beyond reach
After it was over, and the Juneau-Douglas High School football team had lost in its first trip to the state championship game, it was hard for the Crimson Bears to acknowledge how far they'd come this season. "We set our goals high, and we didn't reach them," disappointed Juneau senior lineman Jimmy Brown said after East Anchorage's 33-15 victory Saturday afternoon at Anchorage Football Stadium. It was East's first state title - and title game appearance - since 1990, the first year of Juneau's football team.

Juneau swim team sweeps at Petersburg
Juneau-Douglas High School swimmers and divers swept the team titles at Friday and Saturday's meets at Petersburg, the final tune-ups for the Region V meet. The meets offered Crimson Bear coach John Wray his final chance to try out new lineups for relay events before the region meet, which will be held in Ketchikan in two weeks and determines which Southeast swimmers qualify for November's state meet.

Alaska state football playoffs
The brackets for the 2003 Alaska State Football Playoffs, which opened on Friday, Oct. 3, plus past state and local results.

Juneau third at Service-Dimond
Things weren't looking good for the Juneau-Douglas High School volleyball team. The Crimson Bears were down two games and trailing in the third Saturday night in the third-fourth place match of the Service-Dimond Invitational. Then sophomore Lesley Kalbrener took charge of the middle.

Sports in Juneau
Sports in Juneau is a service provided by the Juneau Empire to provide information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Four Alaska communities report incidents of viral meningitis
Cases of viral meningitis have been reported in four Alaska communities, state health officials said. Four cases occurred in Fort Yukon, two in North Pole, two in Fairbanks and one in Eagle River.

Department of Homeland Security recruiting border officers
The war against terrorism isn't limited to New York and Los Angeles, said U.S. Customs and Border Protection spokesman Mike Milne in Seattle. The agency is looking for up to 40,000 applicants for jobs at land, sea and air ports of entry throughout the country, including Alaska, he said. The current recruitment period is scheduled to run through October if the agency doesn't reach its applications target sooner.

Court tosses Greenpeace challenge
Alaska's highest court rejected an environmental group's claims that the state wrongly approved development of the first offshore oil field near Prudhoe Bay. Greenpeace contended that the state made a mistake in February 1999 when it found that BP Exploration (Alaska) Inc.'s Northstar project was consistent with guidelines in the state's coastal management program.

Opening enrollment at UA reaches all-time high
Opening enrollment at the University of Alaska system hit an all-time high this fall and is expected to climb higher before year's end, UA officials said. Enrollment of full-time students grew 6.3 percent over this time last year and 13 percent in the past two years to a record 16,449, said UA spokesman Bob Miller. Total enrollment of full- and part-time students is 28,961.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Biologist goes after invasive non-native pike in Southcentral
Tim McKinley has declared war on the Kenai Peninsula's northern pike. Using 120-foot gillnets, the biologist with the state Department of Fish and Game has removed about 1,400 pike from East and West Mackey lakes just north of Soldotna.

Senator likes loan-grant split for Iraq
Sen. Lisa Murkowski has joined with a few other Republicans who want to turn half of President Bush's proposed $20 billion Iraq reconstruction grant into a loan. The loan versus grant question has dominated the congressional debate over a supplemental spending bill for the Iraq postwar and reconstruction expenses. The president and most Republicans want all the reconstruction aid to be a grant. Anything short, they say, would slow the money's delivery and send the wrong message.

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