Story last updated at 2:48 p.m. Friday, July 5, 2002

Full slate of holiday activities across the bay
by Sepp Jannotta
Happenings in Seldovia

As usual for the Fourth of July, the streets and waterways of Seldovia will buzz Thursday with celebrations ranging from the Salmon Shuffle to the traditional parade to blind kayak races.

The day kicks off with a blueberry pancake breakfast beginning at 7 a.m., followed by the 5-kilometer Salmon Shuffle foot race. People can register Thursday and the $20 entry fee buys a T-shirt.

The parade starts at 11 a.m., with grandstand celebrations scheduled for noon.

At 3 p.m., the focus moves to the water, where there will be a canoe jousting competition and a blind kayak race. There will also be music from Anchorage's Chiles Family Celtic Dancers as well as Radoslav Lorkovic. The full schedule is also available online at

But one of the most important facets of the day, the presentation of the Old Crab of the Year award, was a question mark as of Monday.

This year's recipient, 96-year-old Alaska icon Col. Norman Vaughan, has been hospitalized recently with failing health and is unlikely to make his appearance.

"I'm so sorry that he's ill," said Darlene Crawford of the Seldovia Native Association, who met Vaughan at a recent Alaska State Fair in Palmer. "He's a nice old guy. A very interesting man."

The famous explorer's feats include the first Byrd Antarctic Expedition of 1928-1930, the 1932 Winter Olympics, a 1967 snowmachine ride from arctic Alaska to Boston, numerous Iditarods, and a successful summit at age 88 of the 10,302 feet Antarctic peak named in his honor.

Vaughan has been an instrumental figure in the commemorative Serum Run, an annual celebration of the heroic 1925 sled-dog run from Nenana to Nome that brought villagers life-saving diphtheria vaccine. He has hobnobbed with the Queen of England, numerous U.S. presidents and gave Pope John Paul II a dogsled ride.

Seldovia's second annual Summer Solstice Music Festival treated music lovers last weekend to two days of folk music in the waterfront Village Tribe Tent.

More than 16 musical acts filled two evenings of performances that ran until well after midnight, and the tent was packed to capacity, according to Susan Zerwick of the Seldovia Arts Council.