Homer Alaska - Announcements

Story last updated at 3:35 PM on Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Homer's Best Bets

That new track at the high school might look tempting, but until this spanky rubber coating goes on, the construction crews ask that people stay off. Here's the deal with the track coating: to apply it, the contractor needs 15 days of warm, rain-free weather. Right, like that's going to work.


Photo by Michael Armstrong

Two people walk their dog past the Downtown Homer sign at the corner of Pioneer Avenue and the Sterling Highway on Tuesday morning. After the old sign fell down last winter, the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center replaced it with a decorative sign used before and found behind the chamber building, said chamber executive director Monte Davis. The sign informs visitors of Homer's Pioneer Avenue business district.

OK, that's 15 separate days, not 15 days straight. Seasoned Homer weather observers wouldn't take bets that in August we could possibly have a week and a half of rain-free weather. Outside of a mega-super-duper extreme cold spell, is there any time of the year where we get 15 days straight of precipitation-free weather? In case you didn't read the fine print on the Homer residential contract, under "meteorological uncertainties," it says "expect frequent cloudy and wet weather. Get used to it."

Being optimistic, the Betster really believes it possible that in the next 45 days at least a third of them will be rain free. Hey, it can happen. Look at last weekend with the KBBI Concert on the Lawn. Our public radio friends for decades have suffered the curse of The Late July Storm, when the Concert on the Lawn inevitably gets drenched. Not that this dampens the spirits. Homer people like to channel their inner Woodstock and dance in the rain.

Holy SPF 45! For one glorious day, people actually got sunburned. The Betster couldn't believe it. People wore shorts. People wore sunglasses. Some guys even went shirtless. Of course, it rained buckets on the second day of Concert on the Lawn, but one out of two isn't bad for the last weekend in July.

So, yeah, it could happen. We could get 15 good days in the next two months. The Betster doesn't want to be a Gloomy Gus. As Monty Python said in "Life of Brian," "Look on the bright side of life." Things can only get better. We'll have some good days coming up, and life will be swell here at Latitude 59 degrees and some change because there's always something cool to do, like these Best Bets:

BEST KEEP IT WILD BET: Thousands of Kenai River dipnetters can't be wrong. Alaskans love their salmon. Celebrate wild salmon with way awesome music for three days of fun at Salmonstock, returning once again to the Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds in Ninilchik from Friday to Sunday. For full information, band line up, etc., visit www.salmonstock.org.

BEST FISH ON! BET: Sure, the fishing has been a bit spotty at the Nick Dudiak Fishing Lagoon, but if you want to improve your luck, try the Betster's tried-and-true technique. Take a kid fishing. Or, if you're a younger angler, fish yourself for Youth Fishing Day from 12:01 a.m. to 11:59 p.m. That means the kids get the primo fishing spots.

BEST OUT AND ABOUT BET: Ah, fresh air, a slight mist and awesome scenery. That's the recipe for en plein air, a fancy French way for saying "brave the elements and paint." The annual celebration starts at 10 a.m. Saturday. Visit Bunnell Street Arts Center for information and suggested sites. Share work starting at 10 a.m. Sunday.

BEST OUT AND ABOUT AGAIN BET: Some of the finest outdoor art can be seen in Homer's gardens — we're talking the gardens themselves. Once again gardeners show of their landscaping with the annual Gardeners' Weekend. See page 2 for all the details.

BEST PITCHING FOR VOTES BET: Homer's seasoned citizens have been around the block a few times, so it's going to take more than the usual political platitudes to get their votes. See how well House and Senate candidates do when they face the toughest crowd in town at 1 p.m. Tuesday for the Candidate Meet and Greet at the Homer Senior Center.