Letters

Letters

Students take ‘long walk to water’

and help others in South Sudan

Earlier in the 2015-2016 school year my sixth grade students read “A Long Walk to Water” by Linda Sue Park.   The book chronicles the life of Salva Dut and the lost boys of Sudan. My students were touched by Salva’s journey and by his continued efforts to bring clean water to the people of South Sudan.

New aids will help all to skate

This fall, the Kevin Bell Arena will have 10 brand new Bay Weld aluminum skate aids to assist beginners on the ice. With the support from the Kevin Bell & Family Hockey Fund, at the Homer Foundation, first-time child and adult skaters will quickly gain confidence and skill with these aids.  

Come join us for public skate, birthday parties or school field trips. Now we have enough equipment to make sure everyone skates at the rink.

Shelly Laukitis for the 

Life in retirement looks good

I’d like to congratulate Michael Hawfield, Beth Graber and Elaine Grabowski on their impending retirements, and thank you for your years of service to so many people on the southern Kenai Peninsula. Having recently retired I know you’ll enjoy your newfound freedom, my friends.

Now that the dust has settled, I’d like to thank everyone who attended my retirement party at Alice’s on April 15. It was wonderful to see so many good friends gathered for the last hurrah.

Record year for recycling e-waste

In late April, Cook Inletkeeper hosted our 11th Annual Electronics Recycling Day. Our numbers are in, and it was a record-breaking year. 

We collected 19,322 pounds in Homer, and 5,926 from Seldovia for a total of 25,248 pounds of e-waste recycled this year. Since 2006, we have kept 202,038 pounds of electronic waste out of the Homer Landfill. Funded in part by the Homer Foundation, and supported by the Kenai Peninsula Borough Solid Waste Department, Homer’s E-Cycling Day was a huge success with deep community support. 

Scholarships appreciated

Thank you Homer Ministerial Committee (Ken Fischer Scholarship) and Rotary Club for supporting me in my college education. I am planning to go to the University of Alaska Fairbanks and pursue an elementary education major. 

Claire Swanson

Supporters of Sea Week helped students learn about heritage through food

In Nanwalek and Port Graham, our K-12 students welcome the spring tides by engaging in Sea Week. This year, our theme is “Foods from the Sea Make You and Me!” Sea Week brings opportunities for students to learn about their culture, traditions, and environment from both local “professors” and outside experts, culminating in a traditional foods potluck. Support for these activities is appreciated! 

Spruce aphids and honeybees

The spruce aphid has invaded Homer. Our spruce trees have become heavily infected with the spruce aphid due to persistent warm winters. Spruce aphids can survive when winter temperatures stay above 14 degrees Fahrenheit for an extended time. Homer has set all-time monthly records the past two winters with high temperatures reaching into the low 50s (NOAA Historical Data). 

Donation supports youth sports

On behalf of the students and staff, I would like to thank David and Mary (Beth) Schroer for their generous contribution and support to Homer Middle School through the Donor Advised Fund, a part of the Homer Foundation.

Their contribution of $3,000 goes a long way in helping Homer Middle School offer quality athletic programs for our students.  This year’s donation enabled the teams to purchase boys basketball uniforms track uniforms and girls soccer uniforms.

Opening weekend big success

A big thank you to all the people that stopped by our brewery and for all that sent us support from afar.

We had four beers on tap and our Shorebird special, Oystercatcher Stout, was very popular with all that were brave enough to try it. Thank you, Kachemak Shellfish Growers Co-op, for donating10 dozen oysters for our special beer.

All our tips will be going back to the community that we love. Shorebird weekend donated $550 to Homer Community Food Pantry.

Like we said, a big thank you to all.

National Alzheimer’s plan needed

The Alzheimer’s Association estimates there are more than five million Americans living with Alzheimer’s disease, including 6,800 here in Alaska. In addition, there are more than 15 million Americans caring for someone with Alzheimer’s or another dementia, including 33,000 Alaskans. As an Alzheimer’s Ambassador, it is my honor to represent them to our elected officials.

Super splash of thanks

Living, breathing working and being by the sea is fantastic. Learning safety skills is essential. Thanks to the many supporters of the Voznesenka School Marine Safety Program, students from grades sixth through 12th grade were able to test their navigational skills, personal flotation and immersion suit skills, make survival kits and learn signaling skills. 

Graduate full of gratitude

I am a graduating senior and as I walked out of the high school for one of the last times, I realized that I am who I am because of the benevolent people of Homer. I am very thankful for all of the scholarships I received that will help me attend college in the fall and I want to thank those programs that take the time to offer those scholarships. 

Presentation will help community put prevention strategies in place

I want to thank the Homer News and reporter Anna Frost for your thorough and thoughtful coverage of our community’s issues with opioid abuse. Your coverage  has started the very type of community conversation that must take place if we want to affect change. Your coverage in turn has inspired courageous disclosures from our friends and neighbors such as Megan Anderson and the Wiard family, stories that moved many of us to tears and greater determination to continue working on the problem. 

Books, bagels go together

I would like to thank the Homer Public Library for the  wonderful “Read 15 in ’16” program. Not only was it enjoyable to read all these staff picks, but I also won a prize for doing so.

Also, the Bagel Shop donated a gift certificate as a prize, which was relly nice. Looking forward to more reading and now feasting at the Bagel Shop.

Carole Hamik

Thanks sew much for another outstanding quilt show

The Kachemak Bay Quilters held their 32nd annual quilt show last weekend at the Elks Lodge. While attendance was not as high as years when the show coincides with the Shorebird Festival, there was a steady stream of visitors and a constant chorus of “oohs” and “ahhs” as viewers walked the show to identify their favorites and vote in the different categories.

Freshmen appreciate support

The freshmen girls and boys of Homer High School and their teachers would love to extend a heartfelt thank you to the Kachemak Bay Running Club for their very generous gift to the decathlon competition. It is wonderful to inspire our young athletes in the world of track and field.

We would also like to thank the many guests who have shared their expertise in our health classes:

REC Room — Kachemak Bay Family Planning Clinic and the peer mentors of the PHAT Team;

Rose Wolgemuth;

Students learn principles of design

Recently three classes at Paul Banks participated in a week-long Artist in the Schools Program through the Bunnell Street Arts Center.  The residency gave our students an opportunity to have local artist Marie Alexson assist them in creating personal flags.  Through movement, art and writing each student created a series of five flags using pastel on fabric. 

34th outdoor education camp: learning that will last a lifetime

The West Homer Elementary fourth grade students would like to thank everyone who has generously donated and volunteered his or her time to make our 34th Annual Outdoor Education Camp possible. It takes a lot of support and dedication from all who are involved. Every student had a successful trip to Peterson Bay and China Poot Bay, where they learned about marine invertebrates, mammals, forest succession, geology, and the tides of Kachemak Bay.

Watch for it: Alaska’s last big project

Once flush with oil revenue, Alaska legislators bribed Alaska voters with a host of “Big Projects.” Most were very expensive and failed (see Delta Barley Project, Seward Grain Unloading Dock, Anchorage Seafood Processing Plant, etc., etc.) And, as we can gather from the size of today’s Alaska state budget deficit — way too little was put into savings.

A friend recently pointed out that after decommissioning, federal law demands removal of the Alaska oil pipeline. And no funds have ever been budgeted for that removal.

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