Wednesday, December 12, 2007

Downtown lighting is wasteful
Recently, I traveled from the Mendenhall Valley to Thane and have noticed each time how dark the valley is and how overly lighted the downtown "shopping district" is. With only two or three shops open during the Christmas season.

Questions not so hard without selfishness
A landfill consultant hired by the city says if we recycle more the landfill will last longer.

Fluoride issue voted down twice
This is regarding Larry Weeks' letter on Nov. 19.

Focus on tailings, end Kensington dispute
I was heartened to read that Coeur Alaska reached a tentative agreement concerning tailings disposal with the three environmental organizations that had sued to stop the Kensington Mine.

Equality and our neighbors to the south
Over the past 12 years, I have spent a lot of time in Mexico. I have many friends in Mexico whom I respect. I am not an "expert" on Mexico. Yet, every day I read newspapers both from Mexico and the United States.

Glossy pro-road mailer turns man off
It was that time of year. Things cooled down outside, and the low angle of the sun in the southwest shined through my stained-glass window and made it glow better than any other time of the year. Peace seemed to prevail until something strange arrived in the mail.

Exploiting Tongass would be criminal
I write as a longtime resident of Southeast Alaska to oppose Rep. Don Young's agency for Sealaska Corp. by means of House Resolution 3560, which would open many of the richest remaining protected areas in the Tongass National Forest to commercial exploitation.

Police & Fire
Juneau police and fire officials and state police report

TMHS to get intramural sports in '08
The final plan for the community's new Thunder Mountain High School recommends intramural sports for the first year and a comprehensive athletics and activities program that will be launched in 2009.

Eaglecrest receives financial windfall
Eaglecrest Ski Area leaped forward Tuesday in solidifying financial backing for its three-year improvement plan to bring two new lifts and a new building to the mountain, among other projects.

SEACC places new demand on mine site
Southeast Alaska Conservation Council wants Goldbelt to give up its Cascade Point dock for the Kensington gold mine.

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

Photo: Finals week
Kevin Almlie studies for a chemistry final Monday in the Egan Library at the University of Alaska Southeast. Students are taking their final exams through Friday. Spring semester begins Jan. 14.

TMHS to get intramural sports in '08
The final plan for the community's new Thunder Mountain High School recommends intramural sports for the first year and a comprehensive athletics and activities program that will be launched in 2009.

Two walk from halfway house
Two residents walked away from a Gastineau Human Services halfway house early Sunday morning. Thirty hours later police remained unaware of their escape.

Ski area lifts may open Saturday
With at least 7 inches of snow falling at the base area Tuesday morning, Eaglecrest Ski Area General Manager Kirk Duncan said the lower lift could open this weekend.

Photo: 1981 Images from another time: Taking apart the Douglas Bridge
The center span of the old Douglas Bridge, a steel-girded structure that connected Juneau and Douglas for 45 years, is lowered to a barge in Gastineau Channel in the winter of 1981 as part of its deconstruction. The original bridge cost $252,000 to build and $22 million to replace.

Around Town

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

Photo: Baking up a storm
Heather Sincic, right, drizzles chocolate over a tray of s'mores held by Cathy Bobalek while making treats Monday at the Juneau Senior Center.

Masonic building to get sky bridge, legislative renovation
The Alaska Legislature this week moved forward with developing the former Scottish Rite Masonic Temple into an annex to the Capitol building.

Cold weather depletes shelter stash
When the weather turns bitterly cold, Juneau's homeless turn to community programs to help keep warm.

Photo: Faith Community musical
Faith Community School choristers practice for their "Mystery in a Manger" Christmas musical, to take place at 6:30 p.m. Friday in the Auke Bay Bible Church sanctuary. The event is free, and everyone is invited. For more information, call 790-2240.

Nutcracker makes noise
Juneau Dance Unlimited's annual production of the Nutcracker ballet made a lot of noise last weekend, with on-stage theatrical explosions and enchanting costumes and characters.

A pastor explores the realities of marriage, divorce and our families
This holiday season is a time when we are focused, perhaps to a greater extent than usual, on our families. We are hearing a great deal about marriage and children these days and the divorce rate figures which tell us that one of two marriages nowadays will end in divorce.

Pets of the week
Cuddly cats seek comfy homes

Surprises help connect us during the holiday season
Every night this December, my daughter wants me to sing Christmas songs while holding hands with her in front of the Christmas tree. I think she got this idea from "A Charlie Brown Christmas," where the kids, unencumbered by adults, find the true meaning of Christmas in front of a transformed decrepit little tree.

Neighbors Digest
Juneau-Douglas High School Class of 1988 to hold reunion

Neighbors mailbox
Thanks for donating to soldiers, families; Thanks to those who helped rescue my car; Thanks for stopping to help on Egan; Thanks for helping us buy phone cards

Photo: Great Alaska Toy Drive
Alicia Smith, left, owner of Juneau's Imagination Station, looks on as Sgt. Larry Dirkes hauls of toys out her store for the Great Alaska Toy Drive on Dec. 7 at Imagination Station.

Gross, Stevens wed
Andrea Gross and Russ Stevens, of Juneau, were married Oct. 20, 2007, in St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.

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Harold 'Jeff' Campbell
Former Douglas resident Harold Geoffery "Jeff" Campbell died Oct. 30, 2007. He was 53.

Esther Weimer
Former Juneau resident Esther Geraldine Weimer died Dec. 2, 2007, in Ketchikan. She was 76.

A. John Gallant
Former Juneau resident A. John Gallant died unexpectedly on Nov. 5, 2007, of a brain aneurysm at his home in Kailua-Kona, Hawaii. He was 53.

Maurice 'Ted' Tidwell
Former Juneau resident Maurice Hartwell "Ted" Tidwell died Nov. 28, 2007, in Tacoma, Wash., after a year-long struggle with cancer. He was 69.

Claudia Kelsey
Longtime Juneau resident Claudia Juanita Dona Kelsey died peacefully Dec. 6, 2007, at home in Juneau. She was 95.

Outside editorial: The strains of detente
Symbolism matters in diplomacy, and that's why recent developments in North Korea policy are worth applauding -- softly. President Bush's decision to set aside his loathing and send a letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong Il represents a triumph of practicality over ideology.

My Turn: University of Alaska best bet for local hire
The operating budget the University of Alaska Board of Regents passed in early November would funnel $13.5 million to some of the highest-demand career training in our state, including health care, engineering, construction management and fisheries.

Outside editorial: Abstinence-only programs are waste of taxpayers' money
President Bush has proudly increased the funding for abstinence-only sex education programs since taking office. He is pushing Congress for an additional $28 million for 2008 to add to the $175 million spent last year.

Outside editorial: Sense in sentencing
For roughly two decades, federal trial judges have chafed under the constraints of federal sentencing guidelines and mandatory minimums that often forced them to hand down inordinately long sentences.

Imagining motivation without money
In a world saturated with television and radio signals, Juneau would not be the first choice of residence for anyone with ambitions for a career in broadcasting. It may serve as a stepping stone while working hard to open new doors.

Outside editorial: Mall shooter didn't achieve fame, he gained notoriety
It's not hard to guess what was running through the disturbed mind of the 19-year-old gunman who opened fire in an Omaha department store on Wednesday, killing nine people, including himself, and wounding several others. He told everyone.

My turn: Women deserve to play in the Gold Medal tourney
I'm writing to express my feelings of concern and distress regarding a recent, uncontested, shocking decision by the Juneau Lions Club regarding removing the women's bracket from the Gold Medal tournament.

Juneau Parks and Recreation Adult Ordway Basketball standings and scores

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.

Bleu Chunks skate to victory
Capital Embroidery rallied with two third-period goals to force overtime, but the Bleu Chunks prevailed for a 3-2 shoot-out win on Sunday in the Juneau Adult Hockey Association Tier B playoffs at Treadwell Arena.

Glacier Swim Club racks up awards
It may have taken 14 hours to get from Juneau to Fairbanks for the Glacier Swim Club, but it proved to be well worth the trip.

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.

Opinions varied on sports at TMHS
After writing Monday's opinion piece about possible ideas for sports at Juneau-Douglas High School and the soon-to-be-open Thunder Mountain High School, two loud and clear points emerged through my e-mail and phone line.

High court won't hear Pilgrim land case
The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear the case of the Pilgrim family and a feud with the federal government over access to their land inside the country's largest national park.

Two arrested for allegedly setting fires in Craig school
Two men were arrested Friday for allegedly setting three separate fires in Craig Middle School and cutting 13 boats loose from North Cove Harbor in Craig.

This Day in History
In Alaska and in the Nation

This Day in History
In Alaska, in the Nation and the World

Lunch service sees rising number of elderly Koreans
Around lunch time on a Thursday the smell of garlic and chilies cuts the icy air outside the old Salvation Army church on the corner of Eighth Avenue and Barrow.

Alaska Digest
Feds propose timber sale in Southeast; Troopers investigate child's death in crash; Memorial planned for helicopter crew; Police investigating death of teenager

Palin rolls out 4% budget increase
Gov. Sarah Palin on Monday released her budget proposal for next year, proposing a 4 percent general fund spending increase that she said was tapering off the big spending increases of recent years.

Fairbanks mental health home to close down
Funding troubles are being blamed for the planned closure of an assisted-living home in Fairbanks for people with severe mental illness.

Alaska Digest
Frenette appointed to Northern Panel; Anchorage Daily News publisher to retire; Man pleads guilty to cocaine charges; Grant will replace windows at museum

Ringleaders sentenced in large check fraud scam
The last of three ringleaders in a major check fraud scam that defrauded Anchorage businesses of up to $200,000 was sentenced in federal court.

Alaskan fatally shot in Colorado remembered
Phil Crouse, the Alaskan who was fatally shot at a Colorado missionary training center, was remembered as a former skinhead who went through a dramatic spiritual conversion.

Wayward muskrat causes confusion on Fairbanks-area trails
Mara Bacsujlaky was skijoring around Creamer's Field when she saw what looked like a brown clump on the side of the trail.

Climate scientist: 'The Arctic is screaming'
An already relentless melting of the Arctic greatly accelerated this summer, a warning sign that some scientists worry could mean global warming has passed an ominous tipping point. One even speculated that summer sea ice would be gone in five years.

Officials call off search for missing helicopter
The search was called off Monday for a medical transport helicopter that disappeared a week ago somewhere near Prince William Sound with four people on board.

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