As the bustle of Homer’s summer activities arrives, the Homer Softball Association also winds up. The skilled and the amateur, the young and the young at heart all make up the eight different teams in the Homer Softball Association. Athletes 18 years and older gather at Jack Gist Park Monday-Thursday at 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. to play ball.
It’s a family event, according to Homer Softball Association Commissioner Jessica Marx, and many of the supporting spectators include kids and dogs.
The deadline for advance registration of the June 28 certified 10K to the Bay Spit Run is Friday for both online and mail-in. Advance registration is $30. On-site registration is $40 and will be available from 8:30-9:30 a.m. the day of the race. Runners age 9 and younger are free. T-shirts are available to the first 225 registrants in order to encourage early registration. The race begins at Homer High School at 10 a.m. and ends at the end of the Spit.
First-time Relay for Life of Homer event chairs Michelle Drake and Michelle Geagel definitely got their feet wet over the weekend. So did the other 185 registered relayers and weekend add-ons, thanks to heavy, wind-driven rain on Friday.
That’s didn’t dampen Homer’s support of the event, which benefits the American Cancer Society, however.
The fundraising goal was $60,000 “and we raised a total of $65,600 and something,” said Drake. Donations will continue to be accepted through August.
Summer or winter, the city of Homer Parks and Recreation offers plenty of ways to stay active. If there’s an interest in a specific activity that isn’t on the schedule, Mike Illg, the program coordinator, will do what he can to make it available.
“I always tell people the recreation program is organic,” said Illg, whose office is located at Homer High School and carefully builds the program around the school district’s calendar.
The annual Homer Spit Run, a certified 10K race, will be June 28. The race begins at Homer High School and ends at the end of the Spit. Race sign-in will be from 8:30-9:30 a.m. The race begins at 10 a.m.
Entry fee is $30 online or by snailmail. Race day entry fee is $40. There is no fee for runners 9 and under. Proceeds support youth running programs.
Online registration is at kachemakbayrunningclub.org. For more information or to volunteer, cally Billy Steyer at 399-1078.
Not only is Alaska represented at the Special Olympic USA Games held in New Jersey June 14-21, Homer also has a toe in the water, so to speak, with swimmer Myrna Kuchenoff and the Alaska swim team’s coach Ruhiyyih Baker.
“I’m really proud of Myrna. Swimming has been her passion for many, many years,” said Carol Shuler, Homer community director for Special Olympics-Alaska. “She’s really dedicated herself to it and we are very pleased she was chosen to represent us at the national games.”
Kicking off the summer with a promising start, the Soccer Association of Homer is seeing consistent development with increased game competition opportunities, participation and volunteer help.
For the first time, traveling U-13 and U-15 Kenai teams have committed to traveling to Homer every other week starting this month. Homer will travel to Kenai on opposite weeks, creating weekly game experience for the U-13 and U-15 teams. U-13 players are under the age of 13; U-15 players are under the age of 15.
Seventh-five people crossed the starting line of the 5k Homer Special Olympic Torch Run on Saturday, one part of the statewide 2014 Alaska Law Enforcement Torch Run and Pledge Drive.
John Hendricksen was Homer’s torchbearer, assisted by Homer Police Officer Charles Worland.
The event raised more than $8,000 in donations and merchandise for the event, with Eddie Escalera single -handedly bringing in cash and prizes worth $3,659.77.
Yes, the shorebirds showed up. So did lots of visitors for the Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival. And there was plenty of sunshine.
Small wonder, then, that more than 170 runners signed up for the 17th annual Migration Run, a USATF-certified 5k event that begins near the Fishing Hole and ends at the base of the Spit.
Paddlers and boaters from around Kachemak Bay, the Kenai Peninsula and the state are invited to an inauguration of the Kachemak Bay Water Trail. Two ceremonies are planned for June 6:
• Noon-2 p.m.: Seldovia ribbon-cutting;
• 5-8 p.m.: Homer ribbon-cutting.
The celebrations include food, fun and water activities.
About 20 people showed up Sunday to try out the sport of curling at the Kevin Bell Ice Arena, part of Kevin Bell Appreciation Day events. A Homer Curling Club is being formed, with appeals to buy a set of curling stones, about $5,000 for 16 used stones. Curling involves sliding stones toward a painted circle. “It’s like darts, but with 46-pound pieces of granite,” said Joel Vos, one of the organizers. To donate or for more information on the club, call Ted Otis at 399-7339.
The Divas, Homer’s women’s hockey league, took three teams to participate in the Fools on Ice state hockey tournament in Anchorage. Twenty teams from around the state participated including teams from Homer, Fairbanks, Juneau, Kodiak and Palmer. The Diva teams represented Homer in three divisions: novice, intermediate, and advanced.
The Kevin Bell Arena is ending the season this weekend with a bash, including the Annual Ash Cup Tournament Friday thru Sunday with participants from Anchorage and the Peninsula, a team from one of the nearby Russian communities and a couple of local teams. Also, Kevin Bell Day is Sunday with fun activities for different groups and the public to attend. This will include an hour dedicated to curling.
The Kachemak Bay Running Club unveiled its new timing clock Friday at the club’s annual membership meeting held at Beluga Lake Lodge. The clock was immediately put to use with a fun run and walk, followed by the meeting.
The club’s two biggest fundraisers — the annual Migration and Spit runs — helped pay for the new equipment.
With the clock hitting 0:55:23, Lex Treinen was the first Ironman to cross the finish line of the 2014 Sea to Ski, a combination run, bike, ski event sponsored by the Kachemak Nordic Ski Club and Homer Saw and Cycle on Sunday. The first Ironwoman was Hanna Young, with a finish time of 1:06:16.
In a weekend of fundraising events, Julie Winters, 30, from Anchorage, made her world professional wrestling debut last Friday, in the Homer High School commons. According to the New Frontier Wrestling Alliance’s Alaska Facebook page, the wrestlers on the event card, including Winters, brought in a cumulative $900 from two shows over the weekend. At a similar event in Wasilla, the money went to Hope for Heroes and a fan in need. Homer-grown Power Plant Productions helped raise a $500 scholarship, for a vocational technologies student at HHS.
If you think March Madness is all about hoops, then you missed the Kachemak Swim Club’s 2014 March Madness at the Kate Kuhns Aquatic Center last weekend.
“It was a good meet. A really good meet,” said KSC Coach Rebecca Hardy. “(The pool) was packed.”
In addition to Homer, there were swimmers from Seward, Soldotna, Kenai and a former Homer swimmer who came all the way down from Wasilla to participate.
Mathew Plant, of Power Plant Productions, is trying to give back to the community that raised him. Combining his personal love for professional wrestling and his gratitude for vocational education, Plant is teaming up with New Frontier Wrestling Alliance to create a scholarship opportunity to a graduating senior in the career technology education program at Homer High School (see info box, this page).
“Everybody has a story about wrestling, whether they hate it or watched it growing up with a family member,” said Plant.
The Divas Women’s Hockey Team hosted the U18 Firebirds from Anchorage this weekend at the Kevin Bell Arena. The Advanced Divas won their game 3-1, and the remainder of the Diva teams played competitively, but were unable to pull off the win. This is the fifth year the Firebirds have come to play the Divas and the first time the Divas have won a game.
Sure the weather was uncertain, but it wasn’t enough to stop the 44 skiers, bikers and runners crossing the Homer Epic 100 starting line Saturday morning.
The weather did open up some options, however.
“Unique to this year because of the conditions was a 100K event and a 50K,” said Jan Spurkland, race director and president of the Kachemak Nordic Ski Club, sponsor of the event.
The race began Saturday morning at McNeil Canyon and looped around a 50K course, with checkpoints along the way.