This weekend the Kachemak Bay Birders and the Alaska Maritime National Wildlife Refuge sponsored Homer’s contribution to the 115th Audubon Christmas Bird Count. Groups of divided up areas of Homer to survey. Their goal was to count each bird they saw and categorize them by species. The information they gathered will be compiled with similar bird counts conducted across America. Researchers will be able to study the data to discover population trends.
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Bretwood “Hig” Higman and Erin McKittrick are well known in Alaska for taking daring expeditions with their two young children, Katmai and Lituya. They’ve spent months living on a glacier, trekked 300 miles along the Chukchi Sea, and traveled the bluffs and valleys of Alaska’s coal country. Now, a Homer filmmaker is making a documentary about one of their most adventurous trips to date.
The Justice for Quyana Petition has been making the rounds on peninsula social media over the last month. Its sponsors addressed the borough assembly to discuss domestic animal welfare on the Kenai.
The Homer icon, Alice’s Champagne Palace, will open for the first time under new management on December 19th. Both the bar and the restaurant will be open. Owners say there’s a new menu featuring locally-sourced dishes, rather than typical bar fare. The new palace will still feature live music and dancing. And, owners say it will try to live up to its reputation as “Homer’s Living Room.”
The Alaska Marine Safety Education Association is teaching fishermen how to put the least amount of strain on their bodies during a work day. The non-profit helps them apply ergonomics to their working conditions to prevent long term health problems. Fishermen are also using ergonomics on the money side of their business. They are learning best practices that minimize effort and increase the size of their catch while still safeguarding health.
The Homer Hockey Association will receive $14,000 from the City of Homer to pay toward an old debt that has come due. The Homer City Council voted four to two in favor of appropriating the money during its regular meeting on Monday of last week. But, Homer’s mayor says the decision, circumvents the city’s normal method for funding non-government groups.
Homer City Manager Walt Wrede will give up his office on the last day of December. Wrede has served Homer for twelve years in a position he says on average is held for only two years. He and his wife plan to move from Homer to Anchorage and Wrede wants to relax for a while. He says he hasn't committed to another position. In his conversation with KBBI, Wrede recalled his proudest moments as City Manager. He also listed shortcomings, and shared ideas for the future.
Kenai Central High school cross country star Allie Ostrander finished first place in the individual contest for the Nike Cross National Finals. The high school senior traveled to Portland Oregon to take the top time in her five kilometer race. Ostrander's basketball coach says her achievement comes on the heels of a minor setback.