Friday, December 5, 2003

More ski safety tips
This letter is in response to your Sunday, Nov. 30, story titled "Safety on the slopes." Although I really liked the physical fitness information in the article, it hardly touched on some other very important aspects of skier/snowboarder safety.

Reasons to oppose road
Reasons to oppose road

New school needed?
There seems to be still some confusion about the new high school. Some people think we need to build the new school simply because if we do not, it would not be possible to receive the 40 percent reimbursement from the government. Others think it is too late to stop the ball rolling. This is absurd.

Anything but a 'healthy forest' law
President Bush has signed the so-called "Healthy Forest" legislation. We live in the middle of the largest federal national forest in the United States of America. The Tongass National Forest is the healthiest national forest in our system and the largest climax temperate rainforest left in the world. This piece of legislation will do nothing for the Tongass National Forest but make it "unhealthy."

Speak, don't spit
In response to Katie Hale's "My Turn:" It seems that you have figured out that high school is a learning ground for much more than mere literature or mathematics. It is a place where you learn about yourself - how you define yourself as you accept and reject ideals and mores that may or may not resonate with your developing concept of self, sense of spirit, and ideas of right and wrong.

Showing courage, interest in truth
This is not my battle. Katie Hale speaks well enough for herself. But the adult responses to her My Turn that I've heard or read have been utterly condescending and dismiss the issues she writes about, choosing instead to express worries about her emotional state.

Is gay marriage a threat?
I am writing this letter because of a recent issue that has been bothering me. I'll start out by asking the readers a question. How many of you really think homosexuality is evil and wrong?

Use it or lose it
While leaving the Gold Town Nickelodeon this weekend after having watched yet another great movie, I thought to myself - as I have many times before - how lucky Juneauites are to live in a community that can appear both insular and diverse, yet at all times is so richly blessed to have such a broad offering of events and entertainment.

Business fee license increase unfair
I am a small business operator and I did hear about the hike increase for business licenses through the news on the radio when the city council passed it. I was getting ready for work and I about choked on my toothbrush.

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

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

Holiday welcome at the Governor's House
Gov. Frank Murk-owski, first lady Nancy Murkowski and 2,192 of their closest friends gathered Wednesday night at the governor's home for the annual open house to ring in the holiday season.

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

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

Teachers ratify contract giving them raises
Juneau's teachers on Thursday night quickly ratified a contract for this school year that gives them raises.

Station feeds real-time ski conditions to Web report
Skiers and snowboarders at Eaglecrest Ski Area and in Juneau's backcountry no longer have to leave home to find out what snow conditions are like on Douglas Island.

Opponents debate changing smoking ordinance
Anti-smoking advocates and opponents will square off today on whether to make all of the city's workplaces and public places smoke-free.

Plan to protect more than game species
The state regulates the conservation of wildlife species that are hunted and fished, but doesn't have conservation plans to cover nongame animals. That will change when the state Department of Fish and Game develops a nongame wildlife conservation plan - Alaska's end of a bargain with the federal government that has poured $6.8 million into state coffers in the last three years.

Alaskans concerned about lack of Taku watershed land plan
At one end of the Taku River watershed is the Tulsequah Chief, an old multi-metal mine developers hope to reopen soon. Downstream, where the river empties into the Taku Inlet near Juneau, local fishermen harvest the watershed's abundant salmon population.

School district may cut up to 26 teachers
The Juneau School District may cut 26 teachers next school year to balance its budget, even as the School Board considers approving raises for teachers and offering raises to other employees.

Clarification
The obituary for David Willard in Thursday's Empire did not mention that he also is survived by cousins, and one of the honorary pallbearers is Ervil Braman.

FYI
Births, judgments and other legal matters.

Nonprofits hope for generosity this time of year
Juneau's nonprofit organizations hope residents have generosity to spare this holiday season.

Bureau releases 2003 traveler study
Tourism officials plan to tap the independent traveler market with tours and sightseeing opportunities based on a new traveler study, Juneau Convention and Visitors Bureau CEO Lorene Palmer said.

...for shoe drive support
... helping with fund-raiser

Weir and George to marry
Heather M. Weir of Juneau and Russell C. George of Juneau will be married in a ceremony at 2 p.m., Jan. 10, 2004, at Northern Light United Church. A reception will follow at 3 p.m. at the Moose Lodge, 8335 Old Dairy Rd.

Ashton and Painter married
Liana Wild Painter of Juneau and Stuart Ashton of Wrangell were married Oct. 11, 2003, in Juneau.

Teacher Talk: Both hockey and literature can prove to be risky businesses
I have never been labeled as a risk taker. I ask permission to do things. I drive within the speed limit. I wear sensible shoes. Funny thing is, I ask my sophomore literature students to take risks daily.

Cruising Baja
With a smoky start and moments of screaming speed, several sailors with Juneau connections completed a 750-mile sailboat rally last month off the coast of Baja California.

... for helping with fund-raiser
A belated and much deserved thank you to Juneau teacher and singer, John d'Armand, for adding his voice to the Opera to GO! fund-raiser. What a treat to hear this talented artist perform again! We appreciate you, John. Thanks for all you've done for the Juneau arts community.

Neighbors Digest
Community news in brief.

Robert 'Bob' E. Nyman
Lifetime resident Robert "Bob" E. Nyman, 60, died Nov. 30, 2003, at his home in Juneau.

Lance Arthur Hathaway
Juneau resident Lance Arthur Hathaway, 46, died Nov. 26, 2003, in Juneau.

David Willard
David Willard, 80, died Nov. 30, 2003, at the Juneau Pioneers' Home.

My Turn: Double-talk makes the case for contracting out AMHS
When he was assistant to the commissioner of state Department of Administration between February 1999 and July 2000, Jim Duncan actively negotiated against members of all state unions on behalf of the Knowles Administration, and gained reductions in members' earnings and benefits (particularly in health care).

My Turn: Should we build a road to Juneau? Do the math
When contemplating a major purchase it is wise to do some research before putting down your hard-earned cash. Is the product cost-effective? Reliable? Safe? Damaging to the environment? Attractive? Wanted by the people who would have to use it?

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.

Miller third in Seattle Marathon
When Juneau's Shawn Miller arrived at the starting line of the Seattle Marathon on Sunday, he had no idea how he'd finish. Miller was running in just his third marathon - his previous two were victories in the 2002 and '03 Frank Maier Memorial Marathons on Douglas Island - and it was his first major marathon with more than a couple of dozen runners.

Sick of second
Over the past six seasons, Hoonah has boasted the most consistently successful small-schools volleyball program in the state. The Braves have made the state finals five times since 1997. But only once - in 1998 - did they win the title. This season Hoonah strengthened its schedule, cracked down on mistakes and enters the Class 1A-2A-3A (West) state tourney with confidence that it can break its Buffalo Bills-like streak and regain the top prize.

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.

Cavaliers continue to lose on the road
Quentin Richardson scored 25 points, and Corey Maggette had six of his 22 points in the final 1:16 Wednesday night as the Los Angeles Clippers beat Cleveland 90-80 to hand the Cavaliers their 33rd consecutive road loss dating back to last season.

Hoonah opens state tourney with a victory
The Hoonah Braves took a big step toward a return to the championship match with a four-game victory over Kenny Lake in Thursday's opening round of the Class 1A-2A-3A (West) state volleyball tournament.

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation.

Amendment for natural gas project tucked into pending bill
A project to liquefy North Slope natural gas for shipment on tankers would qualify for the same federal loan guarantee proposed for building a natural gas pipeline along the Alaska Highway route.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Animal welfare groups seek protection for Alaska sea otters
Two animal welfare groups sued the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Thursday to force the federal government to place an Alaska sea otter population on the endangered species list.

State adopts exemptions for graduation exams
The state Board of Education has adopted rules that will allow some students who fail the high school graduation qualifying exam to get diplomas anyway. The exemptions would apply to students who move to Alaska within two semesters of graduation, as well as students who have a parent die during the last semester of their graduating year, or suffer a serious illness or injury.

This Day in History
In Alaska; in the nation.

Photo: Surf's up
With the dormant volcano Mount Edgecumbe in the background, Martha Robertson surfs at Sandy Beach on Thursday in Sitka. Recent high winds have made for some good waves. Surfing season in Sitka is in the fall and winter during seasonal storms, according to Robertson.

Alaska Digest
News in brief from around the state.

Ketchikan mourns loss of Tlingit elder
A Tlingit elder is being remembered for her contributions in teaching her language and culture. Esther Shea, 86, died on Thanksgiving Day in Ketchikan.

State looks into claims cattle herd is neglected
State troopers are investigating a report of neglect filed early Wednesday by a veterinarian regarding cattle removed last week from Chirikof Island, according to Trooper Sven Skille.

What's happening
Upcoming arts and entertainment events in Juneau.

Crafting a Christmas tale
Two years ago, when Theatre in the Rough presented a half-puppet, half-person adaptation of Shakespeare's "Merry Wives of Windsor," actor Zach Falcon joked that his hand-puppet - the character of Justice Shallow - looked a little like Ebeneezer Scrooge. That comment, however offhand, inspired directors Aaron Elmore and Katie Jensen to think about an all-puppet and mask production of Charles Dickens' "A Christmas Carol."

Movies where & when
Local movie times in Juneau.

New exhibit displays objects from past, present Alaska life
The Alaska State Museum will open an exhibit on Friday, Dec. 5, that features hundreds of artifacts and works of art collected over the past decade, including several hundred newly acquired pieces.

Toe cartoon
Cartoon by local artist Toe.

List of Gallery Walk shows
Featured shows for this weekend's Gallery Walk in Juneau

Students bring antic play to life
Juneau-Douglas High School senior Alex Swanston had never acted in a high school play before, but when he read "The Man Who Came To Dinner" last spring in Bethany Bereman's acting class, he was encouraged to try out for the lead, Sheridan Whiteside.

Fat Friday
This summer Rob Roys worked with dreams, ghosts and memories - an unconscious obsession that turned into "Scaffolds" - a 50-painting exhibit at the downtown Empire Gallery. Winter finds him channeling the same thoughts - but bigger.

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