Years Ago

20 years ago in the Homer News:

Following the crash of TWA Flight 800 the previous week off the coast of New York, the Era Airlines, which flew out of the Homer Airport, bumped up security regulations to strictly enforce checking passengers’ identification cards before boarding. Although the policy has been in effect, it has not always been enforced, said Joe Sprague, director of marketing of Era Airlines. Passengers may also be asked questions about baggage and ownership of luggage, he said.

– From the issue of Aug. 15, 1996

20 years ago in the Homer News:

Biologists with Fish and Game charted a helicopter to conduct an aerial survey of several creeks and rivers on the Lower Kenai Peninsula, including Anchor River and Deep Creek. The group observed scarely inhabited rivers and streams, an unexpected find which left them looking for answers. “I don’t know what’s going on,” said Dave Athons, fisheries biolist with the Soldotna office of Fish and Game. “Frankly I’m a little perplexed as to why more fish weren’t seen.”


– From the issue of Aug. 8, 1996

30 years ago in the Homer News:


Library celebrates Homer readers

A record number of people – a total of 423 kids, teens and adults – took on the Homer Public Library’s summer reading challenge, which received an upgrade due to a new program.

The 10-week challenge is meant to keep kids engaged in learning during the summer months, said Claudia Haines, Homer Public library’s use services librarian.

10th annual Gardeners Weekend

July 30-31


$10 for Saturday talks

$15 for garden tours and reception

Tickets at the Homer Bookstore

Free to gardeners age 80 and older


4 p.m. Saturday, July 30, Kachemak Bay Campus: The Well Designed Mixed Garden, talk by Tracy Disabato-Aust

5:45 p.m. Saturday, July 30, Kachemak Bay Campus: The Art of Pruning Perennials, talk by Tracy Disabato-Aust

11 a.m.-5 p.m., Sunday, July 31: Self-guided tours of five Homer area gardens

5 p.m., Sunday, July 31: Reception and music at Bear Creek Winery

Alaska style traffic jam - and show

A bull moose causes a traffic jam on FAA Drive — the road to the airport — about 3:40 p.m. last Thursday, July 7, before making it safely across the road. Peter MacDonald of Medford, Mass., took these photos from his motorhome. A captain with the Medford Fire Department, MacDonald works overtime and trades leave with other firefighters so he can take an extended vacation to Alaska. He’s visited Alaska 14 times. “I’ve got the Alaska bug, bad,” he said.

Years ago in the Homer News

20 years ago in the Homer News

Lack of support for the Homer branch of the Cook Inlet Council on Drug and Alcohol Abuse kept Homer from starting the Youth Early Intervention Program designed to catch youths when they are in the experimental stages of substance abuse. The program could not get started in Homer as a recent staffing shortage made it impossible to run the adolescent intervention program.

— From the issue of July 11, 1996

30 years ago in the Homer News

Homer college students rediscover home

Many Homer students have gone on to varying types of post-secondary education, often in different cities and states, where they grow and are changed by their new surroundings and the people they meet. For most of these students, they are drawn back to Homer by the triple zero in their bank account. Here, where the job market booms during the summer season, former Homer students are bound to find work well worth their time in an effort to hold off a few college loans.

It takes a village to raise a doctor

If all goes according to plan, one day Homer native Ben Kuhns will be a doctor. However, before deciding to pursue a medical career, he was a slope worker, crab fisherman and a gold miner. This was all after he graduated with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in forensic science, of course.

“I tried to get the whole Alaska experience because I didn’t know when I’d be able to get that experience again,” Kuhns said. “I was paid dividends not only in it gives you life experience but you’re able to have conversations with people and relate to people.”

Years Ago in Homer

20 years ago in the Homer News:

Several suspicious fires had city fire officials concerned, especially as the danger of wildfire was relatively high, said Homer Fire Chief Robert Purcell. Firefighters responded to an abandoned house deliberately set on fire, a blaze that took four hours to put out, on June 17, 1996. The newly cleared subdivisions on Skyline Drive were also a frequent target of vandals.

– From the issue of June 20, 1996

30 years ago in the Homer News:

The Kachemak Gardener

Each and every growing season there is one something that astonishes, that amazes, that speaks to our hearts. And this year it’s lilacs. Their season is short and this time around about three weeks early. I can usually count on them to be blooming for the Fourth of July barbecue. Not this year, they will be way done. But for now let’s all revel in their magnificence. 

The Kachemak Gardnener

There are basic truths that bear repeating: 

• Keep your garden small;

• Weed, if you can;

• Water, if you have it; and

• People, just shake your tomato plants. That’s all it takes to fertilize the bloom and you will have more tomatoes than you know what to do with. Keep your electric toothbrush in the bathroom. 

Now that we have that out of the way, let’s get started. 

Writing faculty inspires aspiring authors during annual conference

An exuberant mood ruled the 14th Kachemak Bay Writers’ Conference, held June 12-16 in Homer. The public readings crackled with enthusiasm. The radiant weather didn’t hurt, either.

This year 127 attendees shared the power of the written and spoken word, and the inspiring camaraderie of those who write such words.

Homer Jackpot Halibut derby: lots of chances to win

This year’s halibut sport fishery has begun with both tradition and change. The tradition is the successful Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby, and the change is a set of new regulations.

May 15 marked the official start and the 30th anniversary of the Homer Chamber of Commerce’s popular halibut derby. The chamber is celebrating with large and numerous prizes. 


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