Homer Alaska - Announcements

Story last updated at 4:22 PM on Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Homer's Best Bets


Photographer: McKibben Jackinsky, Homer NewsPhoto provided

Wishing you were here

Wind blows snow across Beluga Lake last Friday, creating a chilly scene of winter in Homer. The weekend forecast calls for a chance of snow, with temperatures in the teens and low 20s.

The other day the Betster got to feeling all freezing cold and miserable until a woman from Salcha called. She said it was 40 below and she couldn't go out to pick up her daughter's prom dress until their car had warmed up for two hours. Holy Popsicle!

Then one of the Betster's Facebook friends from Key Largo, Fla., posted a severe winter warning from the National Weather Service alerting people that it could get down into the 50s for southern Florida and people worried about orchids freezing.

Isn't it nice to be caught in the middle of extremes? Here on balmy shores a quick raven's flight from the Gulf of Alaska, we can't complain. Yes, it got gosh-darn-heck really cold last week. Yes, brave Alaska women had to bribe snowplow drivers with thermoses of hot buttered rum to get driveways cleared. Yes, the snow got so deep it backed up in car mufflers, Jack Frost's version of a potato up the pipe. Unlike Salcha, though, we can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Winter might wrap its icy claws around us, but her grip doesn't last.

Cheer up! The New Year is five days old. Next week the sun rises before 10 a.m. The Betster won't lie to ya — we're in the doldrums this month when store owners close to go on shopping holidays and not one gallery has a First Friday reception. We survivors who remain are tough and creative, though, and if there's not a lot going on, we have to make up our own fun, like these Best Bets:

BEST BIG NIGHT BET: The night sky will be clear and vast and the trails bright for the Kachemak Nordic Ski Club's annual Friday Night Lights. Ski or snowshoe by Tiki torch on the Baycrest Ski Trails from 6 to 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday and then warm up with hot chocolate at a bonfire later. Meet at the DOT trail head. Admission is $10 adult members, $20 nonmembers, with children free. See story, page 2.

BEST HOT HOT HOT BET: Need to warm up with some great rock 'n' roll that will get you dancing? Elders on Fire might be just the ticket. They're back with a special performance featuring guest artists Dave Webster and Steve VanWagoner. The rockin' starts at 9 p.m. Friday at A.J.'s Oldtown Tavern.

BEST TOTALLY RANDOM BET: You never know what to expect from the talented, smart, funny and just way cool kids with the Homer High School Drama, Debate and Forensics team. Uh, that's why they call it Random Acts of DDF, the team's annual fundraiser. Support the program with performances and a silent auction starting at 6:30 p.m. Saturday at the high school commons.

BEST LIGHT THE NIGHT BET: If you missed the Hogmanay celebration in Edinburgh, you can still celebrate the new year Scottish style with a community bonfire. Bring the family for snowshoeing and sledding from 3 to 5 p.m. Sunday at the Carl Wynn Nature Center, Mile 1.5 E. Skyline Drive. Snowshoes are available to borrow, and best of all, s'mores supplies are provided. Or, head to the Wynn for Winter Wednesdays at noon Wednesday with a naturalist-led snowshoe walk. Meet at 11:30 a.m. at the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies offices off Lake Street to car pool.