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SitNews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska
Front Page Photo By LINDA WILLIAMS

Mama bear & cubs
Front Page Photo By LINDA WILLIAMS



Ketchikan: 50 Events to Commemorate 50 Years! - Five local groups have joined together to organize Ketchikan's celebration of 50 years of Alaskan statehood.

Historic Ketchikan, The Greater Ketchikan Chamber of Commerce, the Ketchikan Visitors Bureau, the Ketchikan Area Arts and Humanities Council, the Ketchikan Gateway Borough, and the City of Ketchikan have banded together to promote 50 local events to commemorate Alaska's statehood.

The year-long celebration of statehood will kick off January 9th with a statehood history presentation at the Discovery Center and will conclude on Dec. 31, 2009 with special New Year's Eve ball.

"We decided that rather than have one large event, we would invite the entire community to be involved and coordinate to have 50 smaller events," said Kathleen Light of the Ketchikan Area Arts and Humanities Council. "Because there are so many events there will be a wide variety of the types of celebrations; some will be historically accurate, some fun and some educational. Something for everyone!"

In addition to new events, the group is working with other local organizations to include existing events such as the Monthly Grind, the Enchanted Forest, the Blueberry Festival and the KRBD Halloween Party to incorporate special Statehood themes. Local businesswoman Rita Carro is working with the groups as well, to bring the statehood celebrations into the school system through a variety of poetry and essay contests and history and genealogy projects with local school children.

Also in the works are longer term events such as a "Guess the Day When the 50th Inch of Precipitation Falls" contest.- More...
Saturday - September 13, 2008

Politics: McCain, Obama focus campaign efforts on key states By CAROLYN LOCHHEAD - his week's lipstick brawl has masked the red-hot intensity of a shrinking presidential campaign battlefield as a flurry of post-convention polls show Republican John McCain starting to move ahead of Democrat Barack Obama for the first time nationally and gaining ground in key states.

McCain and Obama invaded each other's turf in this battleground state this week, and McCain used his running mate, Alaska Gov. Sarah Palin, to draw his biggest crowd yet -- estimated by local officials at 23,000 and heavily suburban and female -- to Fairfax. Obama, in Norfolk on the same day, charged that his opponent's campaign was using "lies and phony outrage and swift-boat politics" in claiming he had used a sexist comment against Palin.

McCain has acknowledged that he cannot afford to lose this bosom of the old Confederacy, now an increasingly Democratic state and a prime Obama target, but also home to the Pentagon and the world's largest naval base. The last time a Democratic presidential candidate won Virginia was in 1964. New polls put McCain ahead by two to four points.

The fundamental aim of both campaigns is to hold the states that their parties won in 2004. - More...
Saturday - September 13, 2008

Ketchikan: 100 played the field during free tournament - The Alaska Army National Guard and Ketchikan Youth Initiatives hosted a Free Tournament and Open Play at the Hot Shots Paintball Field on Revilla Road, Saturday August 16th.

100 played the field during free tournament

Ketchikan Hot Shots Paintball League's newly prepared field.
Photo courtesy KYI

Nearly 100 played the field, comprising eighteen teams of five players each and others in open play. The final 10 minute game for the tournament play-off ended in a tie. The winning teams were AK Pride and Ninja Monkeys.

An estimated 130 to 150 people, from children to seniors, enjoyed not only the free paintball, but also free hot dogs, hamburgers and drinks provided by the National Guard. In the background, a stage built from an AML post flat featured 3 bands: Gimmic, Atomic Workforce and Pantera powered by a generator from Tyler Rentals. Blaine Ashcraft's sound system also supported the excellent MC work by KTKN. A light tower lighting the playing field and a large bonfire carried the event well into the evening hours.

Members of the Ketchikan Hot Shots Paintball League worked very hard to prepare the field for this event. 300 plastic pallets were shipped up from Washington by AML and 6 dump loads of chips donated by Jerry Jenkins were hauled out to the field by Harley Heaton and Paul Hamilton. The result? A totally new field designed by Jose Sambrano, Chris Hausler and Tre Beaupre and no more skinned knees and arms from the rocks underfoot. - More...
Saturday - September 13, 2008


Columns - Commentary

Ann McFeatters: For once, let's get serious about election - Sometimes it's as if we never got out of high school. We insist on choosing our presidents as if it is a popularity contest.

We did it in 2000, when George W. Bush seemed friendlier than Al Gore, an opinion the Supreme Court decided to settle for us. We did it again in 2004, when John Kerry seemed a tad too haughty and couldn't seem to relate. We did in 1992 when Bill Clinton was the hot new stud in class and George H.W. Bush seemed so yesterday. We did it in 1980 when Jimmy Carter came off as geeky while Ronald Reagan exuded star power.

Now we're wondering if new guy Barack Obama might be too remote. Is the John McCain saga overshadowed by the Sarah Palin show? And whatever happened to Amtrak-riding, balding, foreign-policy-spouting Joe Biden, who was the fifth-youngest senator in history and is one of the Senate's least wealthy members? Is this election going to become a referendum on a gun-toting, barb-quipping, creationism-espousing, moose-dressing governor of Alaska? - More...
Saturday - September 13, 2008

Michael Reagan: Obama Implodes - Once upon a time it was inevitable that Hillary Clinton would be the 2008 Democratic presidential nominee. It didn't work out that way.

A few weeks ago, it seemed inevitable that Barack Obama would win the presidency handily. It isn't working out that way.

A few weeks ago, it seemed inevitable that John McCain was in for a drubbing. It hasn't worked out that way.

In political campaigns things can always change, of course, but as of now it appears that John McCain is headed for the White House. That's not inevitable, but at the moment it looks as if he's headed for the winner's circle, thanks largely to his choice of a running mate who has electrified most of the electorate. - More...
Saturday - September 13, 2008

Dale McFeatters: Bailing out the highway fund - It's been a tough summer for the free marketers of the Bush administration who believe that the economy is best served when the government keeps its hands off.

It began with the Fed underwriting the sale of financial giant Bear Stearns. Then Treasury secretary Henry Paulson took control of mortgage providers Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. And Treasury is helping broker the sale troubled Lehman Brothers, the nation's fourth largest investment bank.

And now the White House has acquiesced in a congressionally authored infusion of $8 billion from the Treasury to the fast dwindling highway trust fund, which President Bush had earlier threatened to veto as "both a gimmick and a dangerous precedent." - More...


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Basic Rules

letter Good pool facility important By Zig Ziegler - Over the years I have helped many people find homes in Ketchikan. One of the most important things I have learned, especially for people with families, is that Ketchikan has a number of amenities that make us a desirable place to live. For people who are considering a move here, they not only look at whatever the employment opportunities might be, but several factors weigh in their decision. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Mayor Race By Liz Hook - It is with some relief that I see that Dave Kiffer has filed to run for Mayor. I have been worried that no one would file against Mayor Joe Williams. Mayor Williams has done a good job in many of his functions. However, I have serious concerns related to several of the Mayor's past actions while serving as Mayor for the Ketchikan Gateway Borough. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Palin - McCain Ticket: A Reality Check By Bill Taylor - Now that Governor Palin and Senator McCain are on the campaign trail it is time for a reality check. I am curious how others feel about John McCain taking a back seat on the Republican ticket. It is a little disconcerting that the gentleman who is supposedly running for president, someone who has spent 26 years in the U.S. Congress, has been totally overshadowed by his vice presidential choice who, at the time she gave her acceptance speech, the American people had known for slightly more than 26 hours. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letterChurch & State By David G. Hanger - Dave Kiffer, I don't care what Joe Williams' religion is, but instead of talking about public policy it was he who chose to impose his religious mumbo-jumbo on me. I have met only one individual in public life who insists on imposing his self-righteous religiosity on others, and that is Mayor Joe Williams. He clearly thinks he is better than anyone "unsaved" or not "chosen," and the rest of us are just succubi and incubi who really don't exist or matter at all except as "evil" entities. Mayor Williams shoved his religion in my face, and I sure will call him on that. Personal religious obsession has absolutely no place in discussions of public policy, and I am disgusted a year-and-a-half later that it was. Like I said, send Mayor Williams home to pray; that is where he and it belongs. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Sarah's Bridges to America By Edward Brown - Without spending our hard earned dollars, Sarah Palin has bridged us again to a nation which for over 150 years has treated our state like their possession. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter ALASKAN BRIDGE TO SOMEWHERE By Ken Bylund - Startling, this surge in our mob of 'me firsts'. Remembering the arguments here when the two hundred million dollar Bridge to Gravina Island was in the planning stage, many others in Ketchikan were pushing for a bridge to the mainland so ground transport & commerce could flow onto Revilla Island; a lot of us raised our eyebrows and nodded, more ROI there than an air/sea traffic hazard across to that sparsely populated shoreline. Today we might all focus on a reasonable argument for a hydroelectric source at Mahoney Lake, a shelved project that would provide ROI for all of us, every family on the grid. But we continue to argue 'it would've been nice to have a bridge to the airport.' - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Go Palin!! By Robert Glenn - Mr, Thrush I am not sure if you were asking who my senators were because you were being sarcastic or just really didnt know. So they are Hillary Clinton and Charles Schumer. I never said that Alaska should not get money, I just did not feel that they needed a bridge to Gravina. Why not build a bridge to some place where you could cross into the Americas ( I mean once you get a bridge to North America you can drive all the way down to South America if you wanted, and people could drive to Ketchikan.) But a bridge to Gravina goes where? (NO WHERE) - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Didn't the Obama gang take High School Civics? By Mark Neckameyer - Their crazy, off base claims and charges, some of which are just impossible, make you wonder if they had civics ever!. Have you heard the Obama "Talking Point", must be an official talking point as all his apologists say it the same way. They claim, "McCain voted with President Bush 90% of the time". Huh? Presidents don't vote so what the heck are they talking about? President Bush can't vote on laws, ever! - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Palin By Kimberly Groves - Until last Friday, I was undecided, an Independent, if you will. I did not feel as though either candidate represented my views. However, when I found out Sarah Palin was on the John McCain ticket, I registered with the Obama website as a supporter, bought some stickers, signed up for phone call duty, and rounded up my donationall after spitting out my morning coffee, that is. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Troopergate By Gary Lufrano - I am a registered Republican, with a VERY open mind. I NEVER even heard of Sarah Palin before last week. - More....
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Bridge v. Ferries By Jerilyn Lester - I agree with you Mr. Thrush that our roads are in horrible shape especially where the cruise ship passengers don't see. I agree that they need to be fixed and I would like to see that extra 35 million dollars that Palin put out to bid, should have come down here, would have done a fine job in fixing those roads, making sure the pipes were in good shape and maybe even had some left over. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Racism, whatever the language is wrong! By Marie-Jeanne Cadle - I agree with Ms. Linne that Ms. O'Dell should have focused on the point in rebutting Mr. Garcia's letter - if she, like others of us could have figured out what the point was. Ms. Linne asks if Ms. O'Dell speaks more than one language. I am not sure if Ms. Linne thinks that reading or writing additional languages would help Ms. O'Dell to understand Mr. Garcia's rant or have compassion for his difficulty communicating. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Plane Crash By Marshall H. Massengale - Pursuant to having read the NTSB report and Mike McComb's comments, it is interesting to note that while the NTSB were able to gain access to the pilot's medical records after the fact, the FAA in approving his flying credentials in the first place, apparently did not. Had they verified the pilot's medical history against his application, the FAA would most likely have discovered discrepancies providing cause for rejection. - More...
Tuesday - September 09, 2008

letter Candidate for Borough Assembly By Tyrell Rettke - While I have used SIT News many times to express various views and as a means to communicate various events that I have been a part of, today it is my honor to use it as a way to introduce myself to the entire community in more detail than ever before. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letterCruise Ship Funds and Energy By Rodney Dial - May I respectfully suggest that some of the Cruise Ship Tax Proceeds that the local government is now recommending be spent on art and beautification, be invested as follows: - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter An Alaskan a Heartbeat Away From McCain? By Chris Arteaga - As a born Alaskan, I felt a surge of pride when I heard that Governor Sarah Palin had been selected as the Vice Presidential nominee. Suddenly, my friends were calling me asking for the inside information on my home state's governor; it is truly a glorious moment for anyone who loves Alaska. Then I watched her nomination speech and my roots Revillagigedo Island were outraged. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letterThe Stench of Vitriol By Sandy Powers - What happened to good editorial judgment as to appropriate content in opinion letters to be published? David Hangar's letter clearly violates Sitnews' own standards of propriety and decency stated under Basic Rules and Spirit of Viewpoints . - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Governor - Vice President By Frances C. Natkong - After watching the GOP Convention and Gov. Sarah Palin last night my conviction to vote for Obama held fast. I don't agree with anyone, much less the Gov. who says Ketchikan's Gravina Bridge would have been a "Bridge to Nowhere!" - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Focus on the Point By Tami Linne - I read Donita O'Dell's letter, and Mr Garcia's letter. I am just wondering if Ms. O'Dell can read and write in two or three different languages?? - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Ferries vs Bridge By Thomas Thrush - I agree on the main part of Ms. Lester's rebuttal to me about the funds. It should have been spent down here, but, how about making the remaining 2 or so miles of North Tongass highway, South Tongass highway, and the main road in town nice to drive on, all the way. And while they are at it make sure the piping is going to last more than a few months to dig the road up again. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter SARAH PALIN -TOO TOUGH? By Ken Bylund - This morning, one of the many desperate CNN analysts said that Sarah had bullied Barack Obama; those reporters are very close to being exposed with trying to bend reality to match their desires. Democracy is supposed to be about 'rule of majority' in that the people select representatives that are periodically elected to office for the purpose of fixing problems, not creating conflict. The needs start with the care and good of American Citizens around the world, not about sparing the feelings of those who hate us; our representatives job is to investigate the truth, wherever it may lead them, then inform and rally support via arguments based on honest, reasonable, and rational discourse... and yet, we are inundated with these "un-elected talking heads" doing everything in their power to steer the majority toward weakness and dependence. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Where's the change? By Mike Isaac - Since it became clear that John McCain could be the President of the United States, I have always felt not only that he would sell this country out with the now dead Bush, McCain, Kennedy amnesty plan that would have added up to 30 million mostly low income people to our 300 million, but do little for issues like energy and the economy. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Pres. GWB on "Maverick" John By Mike Sawyer - "John is an independent man who thinks for himself. He's not afraid to tell you when he disagrees. ... No matter what the issue, this man is honest and speaks straight from the heart," President George W. Bush addressing the Republican National Convention. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter The Stench of [Complaining] By Katie Parrott - Things are not so black and white, Mr. Hanger. Not one of our elected boneheads, as you so endearingly call them, is infallible, nor are their decisions always going to be infinitely wise and the outcomes perfectly judicious. How presumptive can you get? (An honest question.) - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Retorical baloney By Jeff Hendrickson - As usual, Mr. Hanger spouts his one-sided retorical baloney. Attacking someone's religious stance is a new one for him and an all new low, as well as utterly rediculous. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter What Palin Hasn't Said By Jerilyn Lester - If Ms. Brewer hasn't noticed, Palin would really like Southeast Alaska, Ketchikan in particular, to dry up and blow away. The money that she brags that she has vetoed is mostly the bridge, but the rest of it is money that was supposed to come down here. - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letterPicking Sarah By Julie Kay Smithson - Like the rest of America, the media is abuzz with talk of Sarah Louise Heath Palin.- More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

letter Befuddled By Misty Archibald - I read Mr.Garcia's and I must admit that I am befuddled. What is it exactly that you're trying to say? - More...
Friday - September 05, 2008

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Ketchikan, Alaska

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Ketchikan Regular Election
October 07, 2008

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1) Local candidates are requested to provide background information, experience and qualifications for the public office for which they seek election.

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Candidate's Statements will be published as received. Send your candidate's statement & photograph to

SitNews will provide an unedited public forum in order that citizens can ask questions of candidates as a group. Candidates are encouraged to participate in the public forum.

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