Business profile: Fred Felkl
Title and company: Owner, Fred's Auto Service

CIRI makes salary cuts, lays off 13 employees
ANCHORAGE - Cook Inlet Region Inc. has laid off 13 staffers, cut executive and director pay, and eliminated some perks in an effort to slash overhead by 25 percent.

On the Move
Holland America hires Shively as spokesman; Alaska hotel association names new directors; Northland Services changes address

Hiring for the holidays
With her 21 years of retail sales experience, Geralyn Ward has a strategy for helping frazzled customers shopping for Christmas presents at Gottschalks in the Mendenhall Center. "I assess the needs first, then go from there," she said. "I usually ask questions first - their age and the price they want to spend. When someone's wanting your help, they're usually pretty open."

Managing traffic
First, let me thank all the thoughtful Douglas and West Juneau drivers who daily let me merge into the downtown-bound traffic. All of you make that difficult situation work! I know there is a problem that will only get worse over time.

Vandals ruin season
I am handicapped. A week ago, my daughter and grandparents surprised me by putting Christmas lights on our four-plex, on almost all my bushes and trees and along our very long corner-lot fence. It was like Christmas past when I could participate and light every living thing on our property. I added large plastic candy canes and Christmas wreaths.

Supports road
As a longtime advocate for a Juneau road that would connect Southeast Alaska to the rest of the state, please count me as a citizen who agrees with the new governor's support for a Juneau road. I feel that, as our leader, he is on a responsible course because he includes the road as a part of his vision for the future of the state of Alaska.

Locals also avoid farmed salmon
Thank you for featuring a front page story on the farmed versus wild salmon controversy. I am glad there are chefs and restaurants in the Pacific Northwest that have made a commitment to serve only wild salmon, and not serve salmon at all if what can be purchased is farmed. The quality of wild salmon, especially from Alaska waters, is known by chefs and quality-conscious restaurateurs to be the finest available in the world.

This was Mardy Murie
This letter is a week late to answer the question in the paper, "Who is Mardy Murie?" Since the film was viewed late on PBS and the article about her 100th birthday in August was never carried in our local paper I will attempt to answer this question. After the passing of Rachel Carson and Marjorie Stoneman Douglas, the title of the Grandmother of the Conservation Movement went to Margaret Murie. She turned 100 years old on Aug. 18 of this year.

Need more nutritious school lunches
High school lunches need to be changed. The Juneau Empire recently printed an article on Juneau-Douglas High School lunches and the growing problem with their nutrition. Through our own interviews, phone calls, surveys, and more, we have discovered that the lunch system at the high school, while adequately supervised, could use an overhaul.

Consider lessons from Afghanistan
"You cannot fight an enemy without becoming more like him." Tuesday's Juneau Empire stories: "Afghan women still need our help," "Afghan parents blame U.S. soldiers for deaths of children from mortar fire," "Kabul grenade attack wounds 2 GIs."

We need another high school
As a lifelong learner and educator I am writing to encourage support the building of a second high school in Juneau. One of the most rewarding parts of school for me were the opportunities to participate in things outside of the classroom, sports teams, clubs and other organizations. I grew so much as a person by participating in activities, not to mention the motivation they had on me to do well in school.

Missile defense remains unproven
Presto! The test bed facility for national missile defense at Greely is transformed into an operational facility for launch of missiles. The concept of national missile defense is as yet unproven, but Lt. Gen. Ron Kadish (director of the Missile Defense Program) tells us the missiles will be placed in a fully operational launching mode at Greely while the process of test and fix, test and fix (his description) goes forward.

Favors road
I am not ashamed to be a supporter of the road into Juneau. I believe I speak for many of my neighbors and friends both in Juneau and other places in Southeast when I say it is time for this road project to be completed.

Intuitive abilities enable healer to empower others
She doesn't make predictions and she certainly doesn't use a crystal ball. Instead, Juneau resident Sayahda takes an intuitive, but practical, approach to helping people get a handle on their lives. "I don't call myself a psychic; that I think has such a negative connotation," she said. "What I do is I assist people in listening to themselves ... paying attention to their hunches and following through."

'The Two Towers' draws dedicated fans
The opening of the blockbuster film "The Two Towers" had Shaan Katzeek camped at the 20th Century Twin Theater 22 hours before the movie started. Wednesday marked the debut of second of three movies based on "The Lord of the Rings" trilogy by J.R.R. Tolkien. The saga of the plucky hobbit Frodo and his intrepid cohorts drew a line that rounded the corner of the downtown block by 11 a.m. Wednesday, eight hours before the film lit up the screen.

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

This Day in History
In 1889, Adolph H. Ziegler, Alaska lawyer and legislator, was born in Maryland.

City suggests smaller and cheaper Valley high school
City engineers say the Juneau Assembly should consider building a roughly 900-student high school in the Mendenhall Valley at a cost already approved by voters, rather than seek more funds for a larger school. In a presentation to the Assembly Public Works and Facilities Committee on Wednesday, city Engineering Director John Stone laid out evidence that supported building a smaller and less-expensive high school than the Juneau School Board has recommended.


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

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

State testing some Juneau residents for Norwalk virus
The state Department of Public Health is arranging to test the stool samples of members of a Juneau dance troupe and its chaperones who may have been infected with the Norwalk or a Norwalk-like virus, officials said Wednesday. The state epidemiology section did not release the troupe's name.

An article and headline about Sealaska's dividends in Friday's Empire misstated when the company has paid dividends. Sealaska paid dividends in April 2001 and 2002.

Miner lunch break in 1935
A-J hard rock miners take a lunch break circa May 1935 a few weeks before the beginning of the A-J Gold Mine strike. The late William Wanamaker Sr. is the miner on the far left. He is the father of current Juneau residents Dorothy Wallace, Eunice Akagi and Sam Wanamaker.

Tlingit-Haida Housing to buy Fireweed Place
The Alaska Housing Finance Corp. board has approved a financing plan that will allow the Tlingit-Haida Regional Housing Authority to buy Fireweed Place in downtown Juneau. The 67-unit senior apartment complex has been teetering on the brink of foreclosure and has survived this year with a $137,000 grant from the state Legislature. The building provides housing to people 55 and over.

Family Grocer to close its doors
Family Grocer and Super Bear, grocery stores owned by Glacier Village Supermarket Inc., will merge into one store at the Mendenhall Center in mid-January. Glacier Village Supermarket, a locally owned company, announced Wednesday it would close the Family Grocer store in the Airport Shopping Center. Alaska Industrial Hardware, an Anchorage-based company with seven stores in Alaska and stores in Portland and Seattle, announced it will open a store in the vacated space.

Nothing says 'Buon Natale' like Italian Christmas cookies
Be it cream cheese sugar cookies or date pinwheels, nearly every family has a certain baked confection prepared during the holiday season that truly tastes, to them, like Christmas. In my mother's family, which has roots in Florence, Italy, Christmas tastes like "cenci" (pronounced chin-chee, Italian for "rags").

City to re-advertise manager job; aims to recruit from Alaska
A Juneau Assembly search committee agreed Wednesday to re-advertise an opening for the city's top job. The committee also decided to continue working with Waters Consulting Group of Texas on the search for a new city manager, Mayor Sally Smith said. The opening will be re-advertised through Jan. 24, with an emphasis on recruiting in the state of Alaska, she said.

Photo: The giving spirit
National Guard Capt. Joel Gilbert, left, and Sgt. Andy Swanston load toys into a tracked vehicle Thursday at the Nugget Mall. The National Guard and KSUP/KINY co-sponsor the Great Alaska Toy Drive, which gives the gifts to charities that distribute them to needy families in Juneau.

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

Take a few moments to pray for peace, reconciliation
This past Sunday in church we sang one of the old songs of the church, "O Come Emmanuel." The words were written some time in the ninth century of the common Era and each verse expresses a hope that God will send someone to bring peace and an end to despair to the people of God.

Barron, Landwehr to wed
Barbara Barron and Joe Landwehr will be married in Las Vegas, Nev. on the evening of Dec. 20, 2002.

Thank you
...for the assistance; ...for your kindness and support; ...for your participation; ...for your hospitality; ...for the support;

Things you can learn from your dog
I lost my old dog Windy the morning following Halloween to an unknown individual who apparently was late for work, and had no time to stop and check the condition of the dog he/she had just ran over. Speeding through a residential area liberally posted with "Speed Limit 5 mph" signs, this individual neither slowed nor stopped. Just left poor old Windy lying in the street, broken and bloodied. She was three days shy of her 12th birthday, and it was hard, very hard, to let her go. Nov. 1 was, for me, a very black day indeed.

Fowler, Croteau to marry
Jim and Susi Gregg Fowler and Joe and Lori Croteau announce the wedding of their children, Micaela Rose Fowler and Travis Jon Croteau, at 7 p.m. on Monday, Dec. 23, 2002, at Northern Light United Church.

Showtime in SE Alaska
It's the holiday season and along with the shopping, caroling, mistletoe smooching and all the other traditions that have been passed on for generations, Americans go to the movies. Boasting big blockbusters and eagerly awaited sequels, movie houses across the nation fill up during the last two weeks of December - even in Southeast Alaska. It's no big deal for modern Juneauites to drive to the nearest cinema to catch the latest flick. But for the Gross family, bringing movies to Alaska's Panhandle is a century-old tradition.

Edward Kenneth Haffner
Juneau resident Edward Kenneth Haffner died Dec. 16, 2002, surrounded by family at his home.

Floyd Rufus Couch
Juneau resident Floyd Rufus Couch died after a short illness Nov. 13, 2002, in Woodland Hills, Calif.

Thomas Angus Casey
Thomas Angus Casey, a recent summer resident of Juneau, died Nov. 8, 2002, in a kayaking accident on Long Island Sound off the Connecticut coast. He was known locally as a runner.

Alaska editorial: Plan for missile shield deployment a good start
The decision by President Bush to deploy an anti-missile shield will be good for the nation and good for Alaska. The benefit to the nation will be long-needed recognition that the world is a dangerous place in which missile technology is spreading and falling into the hands of people likely to use it.

My Turn: Plan brings Sealaska back to profitability
The Sealaska board of directors was pleased to distribute $1.82 per share to our urban and at-large shareholders and a prorata amount directly to the village corporations last Friday.

A holiday tradition
For the past 10 years, Juneau's holiday traditions have included festive lights, cookies at the Governor's House - and a competitive, but very friendly indoor soccer tournament. The Holiday Cup tourney, which is expected to include 26 teams with about 300 kids ages 9-21 this year, has reached the decade mark and is still going strong. This year's tournament, the largest soccer tourney in Juneau, will begin Dec. 21 at Floyd Dryden and Dzantik'i Heeni middle schools, and continues through Dec. 31.

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

Tompkins finishes fourth in giant slalom opener
Juneau monoskier Joe Tompkins, a 2002 member of the U.S. Paralympics Alpine Ski Team, saw his first action of the season last weekend at the Hartford Ski Spectacular in Breckenridge, Colo., placing fourth among monoskiers and 17th overall in Friday's giant slalom race.

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

Billups fills it up
CLEVELAND - Chauncey Billups was determined to give the Detroit Pistons an overtime victory - even if he had to do it all by himself. Billups scored eight consecutive points in overtime and finished with 23 to lead Detroit to a 111-106 victory over the Cleveland Cavaliers on Wednesday night.

Mount Edgecumbe sweeps own tournament
Matt Mercier scored 23 points on Saturday night to lead the Class 3A Mount Edgecumbe boys basketball team to a 60-53 victory over the Class 4A Sitka Wolves and the title in the school's own tournament. The victory gave the Braves a perfect 3-0 record in the tournament, with Mount Edgecumbe also beating Porter Creek of Whitehorse, Yukon Territory, 90-36 on Thursday and topping Class 2A Hoonah 88-41 on Friday.

Juneau girls down, but not out at Lathrop
The size of the deficit caught some of the Juneau-Douglas High School girls basketball players by surprise. The Crimson Bears, who had been tied with the Lathrop Malemutes at halftime, found themselves trailing by 13 points late in the third quarter of the season-opener for both teams at Lathrop High School in Fairbanks.

Murkowski appointment makes history
Mat-Su schools lay off 48 employees; Kenai awards contract to restore river; State wants more time for federal order; NMFS takes public comment on crab buyback proposal

Ben Stevens says he doesn't want U.S. Senate seat
State Sen. Ben Stevens is not interested in an appointment to the U.S. Senate, he said during a press conference in Anchorage on Wednesday. Stevens, the son of U.S. Sen. Ted Stevens, called the press conference to dispel talk that he was among a handful of Republicans being considered.

Ketchikan borough sues veneer outfits
KETCHIKAN - The Ketchikan Gateway Borough has filed a lawsuit against Gateway Forest Products and the Ketchikan Pulp Co., contending the two companies conspired to defraud the borough.

Kenai considers cutting teachers in '03
HOMER - The Kenai Peninsula Borough School District is developing plans for cutting 55 1/2 teaching positions for the 2003-2004 school year. Todd Syverson, assistant district superintendent, said the district's human resource department will ask principals for suggestions on where cuts can be made and what programs need to be protected.

Kenai woman develops spa for animals
KENAI - Looking around the room, with the large oil painting portraits of assorted dog breeds, scented candles flickering and mood music coming from the tape deck, it was easy to see why Forest Gump was deeply relaxed. No, not the character Tom Hanks portrayed, but Forest Gump the bouvier des Flandres being given a massage at the Kenai Peninsula's new spa for pets.

Two Scammon Bay teenagers rescued from drifting ice
ANCHORAGE - Two Scammon Bay teenagers riding a snowmachine were rescued in a blizzard Thursday afternoon on mushy pack ice west of Hooper Bay. The Alaska National Guard rescued the boys about 12 hours after authorities were first alerted that the boys were on a snowmachine when the ice broke off and began drifting.

Weyhrauch meets with constituents
Juneau Rep.-elect Bruce Weyhrauch met for the first time with constituents Wednesday night at the Mendenhall Valley Public Library. Weyhrauch was elected in November to represent House District 4, which covers most of the Mendenhall Valley, Auke Bay and all points north. He will be sworn in on the first day of the 23rd legislative session on Jan. 21.

Murkowski names daughter to U.S. Senate
Gov. Frank Murkowski today appointed his daughter Lisa Murkowski to succeed him as Alaska's junior U.S. senator. The appointment was made official after Lisa Murkowski was sworn in at noon in Anchorage. The announcement was met with some skepticism about the month-long interview process the elder Murkowski held with some 26 potential replacements.

Community groups helping Santa respond to letters
FAIRBANKS - Community groups again this year are helping Santa respond to all those letters and cards from children.

Murkowski makes U.S. history
WASHINGTON - Lisa Murkowski, the newest member of the U.S. Senate, is making history before she ever sets foot in the hallowed halls of Congress.Murkowski, 45, is the first daughter or son to be appointed to the Senate by a father who is a sitting governor, according to a Senate historian. Several governors have appointed their wives to the Senate, but never their children.

State Briefs
Mat-Su schools lay off 48 employees; Kenai awards contract to restore river; State wants more time for federal order; NMFS takes public comment on crab buyback proposal

State Briefs
Coast Guard ends search for pilot; Helicopter landings allocated; Assembly to re-hire lobbyists;

Alaska teacher who saved student one of 22 Carnegie Heroes
PITTSBURGH - An elementary school teacher from Alaska who saved a student from a knife-wielding attacker was one of 22 people recognized today by the Carnegie Hero Fund Commission. Jeffrey Carl Harriman, 52, a reading teacher from Palmer, says he still isn't used to having the "hero" label applied to him since he helped rescue Stephan Hansell, then 7, at Mountain View Elementary School in Anchorage in 2001.

The music of 'Winter'
Antonio Vivaldi heard music in Vienna's winter winds. Vivaldi's "Winter" from "The Four Seasons" will be among four concertos showcased this weekend by the Juneau Bach Society. About two dozen musicians will play in two performances, at 8 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, and 4 p.m. Sunday, Dec. 22, at Northern Light United Church. The four concertos are each about 15 minutes in length and feature virtuoso solos for soprano, violin and cello. Soprano Kathleen Wayne will be featured in Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart's "Exultate, Jubilate" and violinist Steve Tada will be the soloist for the Vivaldi.

'The Grumpsicle meets Julius Caesar'
Fancy prancy reindeer, a stupid Cupid and an unlucky leprechaun help Santa foil the Grumpsicle this year. "The Grumpsicle Meets Julius Caesar" is this year's installment of the annual holiday pageant by the Janice Holst School of Dance. Performances will be at 1 and 7 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 21, at Centennial Hall.

Death, lies, braggadocio - a Christmas tale
The magazine article said: "Add a touch of personal warmth to your Christmas newsletter with a handwritten note. Ask about their trip, or their new baby." Which is exactly what I did. And what did I receive in return? Outrage and vilification - all through my wife of course, since my mother-in-law has never directly communicated with me.

Best Bets: Rock, Vivaldi and bonfires for the solstice
On Saturday, Juneau celebrates the darkest, longest night of the year - and the return of the sun. This weekend's festivities include a concert with the rock band Cracker and two free classical concerts, courtesy of the Juneau Bach Society.

Movies where and when
"Two Weeks Notice," (PG-13) starts Friday, Dec. 20, at Glacier Cinemas, shows at 7:10 nightly, with second shows at 9:20 Friday and Saturday nights, and matinees at 2 and 4:10 Saturday and Sunday afternoons.

What's happening

Cracker: Alternative band stops in Juneau on solstice tour
The alternative rock band Cracker has a superfan in Juneau but he doesn't have a shrine to the band. He is dedicated, though, and his enthusiasm has led to a Juneau concert for the band, known for songs such as "Low," "Eurotrash Girl," "Teen Angst (What the World Needs Now)" and "Can I Take My Gun Up to Heaven." Gene Nelson, a musician and self-described Crackerhead in Juneau, noticed last month the five-piece band was headed to Alaska. Cracker was booked to play Homer, Fairbanks and Anchorage for an "Alaska Solstice Tour." Nelson also noticed a big fat hole in the tour schedule for Friday, Dec. 20.

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