The 10K Homer Spit Run is a magnet for local and visiting athletes. Some dash to the front of the pack. Others resolutely put one foot in front of the other for the pride of finishing. Among the hundreds of participants are stories that inspire, bring a tear and recall a memory.
Ninilchik may be small in size, but not flavor. The most recent offering attracting hungry residents, visitors and Sterling Highway travelers is Keen Kow Thai Food.
No puzzle about the restaurant’s name. Translated, it means, “Eat Thai food.” That encouragement is underscored by the tantalizing aroma welcoming diners and hinting at chef Nina Oliver’s skill when it comes to combining herbs. Oliver and her husband, Rick, are owners of Keen Kow.
After more than a half-century since their service to this country, Homer residents Don Arseneau, Dick Lewis and Gail Sorensen received some well-deserved honor. Along with 20 other veterans from World War II and the Korean War, they participated in an Honor Flight from Alaska to Washington, D.C., April 26-May 1.
Steve Veldstra is and isn’t new to Wagon Wheel.
He is in the sense that he and his wife, Stacey, and their six children, bought the garden and pet supply business from Barbara Walker in May.
He isn’t in the sense that he worked for Walker at Wagon Wheel from 1984 to 1997.
He is quick to assure customers “there will be no major differences.”
Stacey Veldstra agreed.
“A lot of what people know about Wagon Wheel will be the same,” she said.
The empty building that once buzzed with Alaska Wild Berry Products jam-, jelly- and candy-making energy was humming last Saturday.
Between 11 a.m. and 4 p.m., customers browsed, shopped and visited with 24 farmers, artists, crafters, cooks, beverage-makers and musicians participating in opening day of Alaska Wild Berry Emporium.
“I love making good ideas and this one was,” said organizer Scott Wright of the indoor market he plans to be a weekly event through May. “It was so amazing. I couldn’t help smiling.”
The intricate patterns of quilts made by Laveda Youngblood reflect the 80-year-old’s artistry. For more than 20 years, she has selected, as well as created her own designs. She’s matched fabrics, embroidered and appliqued detail. She’s stitched by hand and machine hundreds of quilts that have become gifts for her husband, Tom, their family and friends; have been displayed in numerous shows and earned her a reputation as a talented quilter.
Last year more than 170 entrants took to the Spit Trail for the Migration Run, a 5K USATF-certified event. This year, organizers are hoping to attract 200 participants to the May 10 event that not only occurs during Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival, but also takes place on Mother’s Day.
And here’s the thing: You don’t have to be a runner to take part. Reflecting KBRC’s philosophy, walkers and stroller-pushing entrants are welcome.
The sign at 34020 North Fork Road, just east of Coastal Realty at the corner of North Fork Road and the Sterling Highway, says it all: The Anchor Point Public Library is open for business at its new location.
Even better: the location is permanent, thanks to Bob Craig, the library board president, and his wife, Lora, the librarian.
The Craigs purchased the building — including two apartments, a 2,800-square-foot space formerly occupied by the New Image Salon and 29 storage units — in September.
Four southern Kenai Peninsula athletes and others from schools around the state were back on the basketball court Saturday to compete in the annual Alaska Association of Basketball Coaches’ Senior All-Star Games at Dimond High School in Anchorage.
On the 1A/2A girls’ roster was Kilina Klaich of Nikolaevsk, on the 1A/2A boys’ roster was Seldovia’s Seth O’Leary and on the 3A/4A boys’ roster were Sheldon Hutt and Jaruby Nelson of Homer. The games also featured a three-point competition and a dunk contest.
The Ninilchik School gym has been used for lots of events: ball games, holiday celebrations, talent shows, musical performances and graduations to name a few.
None have ever packed the room quite like the event of Sept. 24, 2010: the school’s 100th anniversary.
Everybody from Ninilchik School graduate and former Lt. Gov. Loren Leman, descendant of one of Ninilchik’s founding families, to representatives from the Kenai Peninsula Borough School Board were on hand to mark the celebration with a crowd of former and current students and their families.
You can call them the Seldovia Sea Otters boys basketball team and you’d be correct. Better yet, and equally correct, they also can be called the 1A State basketball champions.
In a final tournament game against the Scammon Bay Eagles at the Alaska Airlines Center in Anchorage on March 18, the Otters scored a 62-34 victory, proving themselves worthy of the crown they’ve worked for years to earn.
In 2008, Sata Frolov, a 1991 graduate of Nikolaevsk School, traveled from Oregon for the 40th anniversary of the predominantly Russian Old Believer village east of Anchor Point.
“Always show Nikolaevsk pride,” Frolov told those gathered at the May 2008 event. “You have an awesome school here. Don’t let anyone tell you differently.”
With the Homer Mariner girls basketball team poised to head to the 3A State Tournament in Anchorage this week, three southern Kenai Peninsula small-school teams began on Saturday playing in the 2015 March Madness Alaska 1A State Tournament: the Seldovia Otter boys team and the Nikolaevsk Warrior girls and boys teams.
When funding for a new school at McNeil Canyon was needed in 1981, the McNeil School Steering Committee created a marketing plan that included distribution of 20,000 brochures throughout the peninsula.
“It boils down to us selling what we consider a basic need for this community,” the group’s spokesperson, Larry Holman, told the Homer News at the time.
After last week’s Peninsula Conference Tournament, with four days of play and 24 total basketball games, the Nikolaevsk girls team and Seldovia boys team are in the same spot they were a year ago: tournament champions.
The Nikolaevsk boys and Cook Inlet Academy girls also are where they were a year ago: in the tournament’s second-place slot. The four teams will advance to state championship play this week in Anchorage.
There was no doubt in Phil Gordon’s mind what he saw sticking out of the ground near the mouth of Diamond Creek on Jan. 4. It was the tip of a horn.
“When I saw it, I thought, ‘Oh, I know you,’” said Gordon, who grew up on a farm and can give graphic firsthand accounts of dehorning cattle.
With the help of local historian Janet Klein, Gordon now knows his find was the tip of a steppe bison horn and, through carbon dating, also knows it is older than 43,500.
Last week’s basketball games wrapped up the Peninsula Conference season. Almost. This weekend is the conference tournament. Next weekend is the state championship.
Representing the southern Kenai Peninsula in the conference tournament are girls teams from Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik and Seldovia, and boys teams from Nanwalek, Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik and Seldovia.
Kachemak Selo and other schools off the state road system make it challenging for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District to provide education to the borough’s younger residents. Add to that a mixture of languages, religions, cultures and family situations and the challenges only increase.
That’s where the Connections program comes in handy, a homeschool program offered solely to students within KPBSD.
The morning’s hush is disturbed only by the sound of a crow’s wings at it flies just beyond the edge of the bluff. The sun is still on the distant side of the Kenai Mountains, its light beginning to spread down the Fox River flats and across the surface of Kachemak Bay. The bay’s whispered surf is barely audible in the morning stillness.
After hours of public testimony during Tuesday’s regular meeting of the Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly, the assembly voted down an ordinance that, if passed, would have placed before voters in October the operation of marijuana cultivation facilities in areas of the borough outside cities.