Author 'pleasantly surprised' by Alaskans
On tour for his new book, "Looking for Alaska," author Peter Jenkins said he feels like "a one-man promotion crew" for the Last Frontier.

In the stacks: New magazine titles
Are your interests outstripping your budget? Save yourself some money (and the landfill some space) and check with the Juneau Public Library for all kinds of interesting magazines!

Brown bears not complete strangers to Valley
The Mendenhall Valley is not known for brown bears. Only a few sightings have been reported over the past 50 years. In one case, the bear lost his life. In another, Lee Hagmeier, then 17, was mauled in 1959 just a few miles from the glacier on McGinnis Creek.

Uncommon visitors to the Valley
Brown bear sightings are extremely rare in the valley but this fall was an exception. A mother bear and her nearly-grown cub spent about two months ranging between Steep Creek, near the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center on the east side of Mendenhall Lake, and the lake's west side. Virtually every trail in the area was closed to hikers.

There goes the neighborhood
It's generally accepted that black and brown bears do not get along. Wildlife biologist Kim Titus has seen what happens when a brown bear moves into a stream where black bears are fishing.

No chance for change?
Gee, its not even winter solstice yet and the pagan-games have begun. Judging by his editorial in Sundays paper, Don Smith has been listening seriously to someone whos not really all that happy with our mayor and certain ones on the Assembly for wishing to infuse the venerable good old boy system with some, perhaps too liberal, new blood?

Repercussions for captain required
I am writing regarding the recent incident where the FV Aurora's captain decided to not take aboard a casket in Sitka en route to Angoon. I am upset that this whole incident has gone by without repercussion.

Pay more, get more
In response to Bob Tkacz's complaining about a rate hike for liveaboards (My Turn, Dec. 6): Who's he kidding? Juneau has very low rates, and our biggest problem is not enough stalls, the building of which requires money. Boat owners (like me) should foot most of the bill.

Police and Fire
Juneau police, fire officials and state troopers reported:

Photo: Baby steps
Juan Quintanilla, 14, crawls at the top of the Hooter chair lift Saturday on the second day Eaglecrest Ski Area has been open this season.

Around Town
Listings of local nonprofit events.

Project links Juneau psychiatrist to area patients
Video equipment and a digital connection will link Dr. Mark Stauffer, a Juneau child psychiatrist and pediatrician, to patients in Ketchikan and Metlakatla two half-days a week.

Latest snow poses avalanche danger
The Southeast Alaska Avalanche Center says this is a good weekend to stay inbounds at Eaglecrest Ski Area and carry a beacon, probes and shovel. And backcountry travelers should carefully observe the terrain and snow conditions for the threat of snowslides.

University to offer analytical courses on Tlingit language
Those interested in learning more about the Tlingit language will have a new opportunity starting next semester at the University of Alaska Southeast in Juneau, as an unprecedented three-semester series of Tlingit classes is set to begin.

Juneau man on the front
Lance Cpl. Bryce Collins of Juneau is part of the battle against the Taliban and al-Qaida in southern Afghanistan. "It's scary. We watch the news every day for hours," Gayle Collins said today about her son, a 1999 Juneau-Douglas High School graduate.

Girl injured in rollover to be medevaced
A 7-year-old girl was to be medevaced to a Seattle hospital, among 12 people treated for injuries Saturday night after two vehicles slid off Egan Drive, one of which struck bystanders.

Economic package focuses on bringing business to Juneau
The Juneau Economic Development Council has produced a fact-filled marketing package to attract new business.

Man arrested on weapons and assault charges
Juneau police said they arrested a man Friday night on assault and weapons charges after a partially disassembled rifle discharged in an apartment. No one was hurt, police said.

The first paragraph of an article on a fire in Wednesday's Empire incorrectly referred to the location as the Juneau Senior Center. As the article later stated, the fire was in an apartment. The apartment is in the Mountain View Apartments, which are above the center and are separately managed.

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

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

Girl in critical condition after weekend crash
A 7-year-old girl is in critical condition and on a respirator today after she was ejected from a vehicle Saturday afternoon during a two-vehicle accident that sent 14 people to the hospital.

Photo: Basket of beads
Hailey Quinto, left, and Kaitelyn McDonald contemplate collections of beads at a crafts table during Saturday's Holy Trinity Episcopal Church Christmas Bazaar at McPhetres Hall downtown.

Airport releases plan to limit wildlife hazards
The Juneau Airport wants to clearcut a woodland by the floatplane pond and fill some wetlands to discourage wildlife near the airstrip, according to a list of proposals released by airport staff.

Alaska Cargo gets new owners
Northland Holdings, which owns a major barge line in Alaska, has bought all of the shares of a competitor, Alaska Cargo Transport, but Southeast customers aren't likely to be affected by the sale, company officials said.

Word of Mouth
Word of Mouth gives readers a forum to express opinions on a variety of issues by telephone.

Grinch joins CBJ Human Resources Committee
The CBJ's Human Resources Committee cooked up some mischief Monday when two members of the four-member committee opted to replace two experienced members of the Bartlett Regional Hospital Board of Directors. Some members of the Assembly and Bartlett officials were surprised and mystified by this action.

My Turn: The art of plowing winter streets
Winter is upon us again, bringing with it the usual accouterments: Snow, ice, freezing rain and darkness to name a few. Everyone gets a chance to become familiar with driving during the worst time of year. Even for those experienced, it can be a challenge. There will be many obstacles on your commute.

Salt Lake's nice recovery
The mountains of the Wasatch Front east of Salt Lake City are buried in new snow, the torch is making its way across the country and personal dramas abound as the 2002 Olympic Winter Games approach.

There is no rest for the rest counselor
The thought of all the Americans formerly known as yuppies reaching retirement age together won't leave me alone. I care about them all and want to help them through what is statistically a rough time in their lives. How many times have you heard that someone who has worked hard for 30 or 40 years retires, hangs around the house a few weeks, then goes back to work? I am appalled every time, too.

Cartoon by TOE

Act now to boost the state's economy
Juneau's McDowell Group reports what many suspect. Only Juneau has experienced any economic growth in Southeast in the past 10 years because it's the state capital. Other SE communities have experienced drops in jobs, payroll and personal income.

Sports in Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

Duke spoils Amaker's reunion
Jason Williams scored 14 of his career-high 35 points in the first 4 minutes, 13 seconds as Duke beat Michigan 104-83 Saturday to spoil Tommy Amaker's reunion with his alma mater and mentor, Mike Krzyzewski.

Juneau takes region title
The Juneau-Douglas High School wrestling team won the Region V tournament in Sitka on Friday and Saturday in Sitka, ending a four-year title drought. The last time the Crimson Bears claimed the region title was in 1997.

Coppick gets Furlong's 'Goat' in Roughhouse Friday boxing
On Friday night, Coppick used his mountain-hardened experience to weather the blows of Adam "Bomb" Furlong in the main event of Roughhouse Friday boxing at Alaska Native Brotherhood Hall. The two middleweight boxers went toe-to-toe in the first round, with each fighter exchanging a series of connecting shots before Coppick took control of the bout.

Sports In Juneau
Information on upcoming sports and outdoors events in Juneau.

New air routes could protect small planes
The Federal Aviation Administration is proposing more than a dozen new air routes over Anchorage to safeguard small planes from potentially deadly jet turbulence.

State Briefs
Doctor's license suspended; Inquiry questions GCI cable bid; Teen dies after soccer practice; Retired trooper, son die in accident; Ketchikan murder trial set for January; Airport drill set for Thursday; Lockup fund-raiser targets disease; Lockup fund-raiser targets disease; Coast Guardsman dies while hiking; Fisheries panel OKs seabird protection; New FEMA director named

Tourist bookings drop, but not as much as feared
A survey of Alaska's tourism industry shows advance bookings for next summer's visitor season are down by an average of 23 percent, far below the expected overall drop of 40 to 60 percent.

Ayers says Alaska has lost its soul
Jim Ayers, chief of staff to Gov. Tony Knowles for seven years, announced Tuesday that he will resign Jan. 4 to take a position with an international environmental group.

State wants lawsuit on Bush police protection thrown out
ANCHORAGE - State officials want a judge to dismiss a lawsuit by rural communities and Alaska Native groups that alleges state discrimination through inadequate police protection in villages.

ketchikan Charter School wants to extend charter 10 years
The 2001-02 school year marks the end of the Ketchikan Charter School's five-year charter and - school organizers hope - the beginning of 10 more years as the Ketchikan School District's fifth elementary school.

Decoy deer draws fire
Robotic deers operated by the U.S. Forest Service in Yakutat, Sitka, Hoonah, Admiralty Island and Juneau are used by enforcement agencies to catch hunters who break the law.

Cowper joins Texas law firm
Former Alaska Gov. Steve Cowper is moving to Texas to join a law firm where he will specialize in energy and environmental issues.

Sitka buses en route?
After 10 years of talking and three years of steady planning, Sitka may have public buses up and running by spring or midsummer, planners said last month.

Ferry Merry Christmas in Ketchikan
The new Ketchikan Gateway Borough airport ferry Oral Freeman will be decked out in Christmas lights and join in the Dec. 23 Christmas Boat Parade.

Skiff capsizes near Sitka; eight youths, dog dunked
All eight young people and a dog managed to make their way to safety on the evening of Nov. 30 when their 13-foot skiff capsized in Eastern Channel.

Girls' dorm flooded at Mount Edgecumbe High School
A sprinkler system burst at a girls' dormitory of Mount Edgecumbe High School, forcing the evacuation of 99 students, school officials said.

Honoring Pearl Harbor survivors
Gov. Tony Knowles, left, honors Pearl Harbor survivors Joe Booi, and Rex Talley, right, during a ceremony observing the 60th anniversary of the surprise attack on Pearl Harbor, at the American Legion post in Anchorage on Friday.

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