Anna Frost

New competitive hockey team plays at home

The Homer Glacier Kings, Homer Hockey Association’s new competitive age 16-and-under (16U) team, plays three games against the South Anchorage Mighty Moose at Kevin Bell Arena on Saturday, Oct. 1 and Sunday, Oct. 2. All games are open and free to the public, said team manager Susan Larson.

Saturday starts with a game at 9 a.m. and then an exhibition game at 5 p.m. The third game takes place Sunday at 9 a.m.

Mariners crush Redington in 58-12 homecoming game, gain first win

Homecoming weekend resulted in a victory in the sun for the Homer High School Mariners when the clouds cleared long enough for the football team to grab their first win against Redington High School on Saturday, Sept. 24. The game finished with a score of 58-12.

During halftime, the homecoming spirit was in the air. The cheerleaders performed a dance, which was followed by an Ancient Greece-themed Parade of the Classes. After the parade, the homecoming court was presented.

Kimberly Ketter's felony DUI does not disqualify her from city council race

Questions raised last week as to whether Homer City Council candidate Kimberly Ketter is eligible to run for office as a result of her felony conviction for driving under the influence were based on false information.

Ketter can run for the city council seat while on probation.

The city’s declaration of candidacy form requires a candidate to declare that he or she is a qualified voter in order to run for office. Ketter is eligible to vote, and therefore is eligible to run for city council, because she has not been convicted of a felony involving moral turpitude.

Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby awards thousands to lucky anglers

When Austin Nelson, a member of the U.S. Army and the angler who reeled up a 252.2-pound halibut in mid-August, found out he won the Homer Halibut Jackpot Derby, he travelled from his station in North Pole to accept his prize in person at the awards event on Wednesday, Sept. 21. $15,419.50

“This is the biggest sum of money I’ve ever won. I consider myself an avid gambler so I feel like I’m getting some of my money back,” Nelson said.

Library unveils surprises at 10th birthday celebration

The Homer Public Library unveiled two new additions — one small in size and the other quite large — during the 10th birthday celebration of the current library building on Saturday, Sept. 17.

Guests walking into the library to attend the event were greeted by the new Friends of the Homer Public Library bookmobile, which was open so the public could see the shelves of books inside. Once inside, a rectangle wrapped in orange paper caught the eye before FHPL Vice President Sue Mauger and former board member Cleo Webb unveiled the painting of the library.

Indigenous art workshop inspires teens

Bones, feathers, porcupine needles, beads and other items covered the tables of Homer Flex’s workshop area as students and staff drilled, threaded and attached components of their art pieces. Melissa Shaginoff, the Kenai-raised artist facilitating the Sept. 8-9 “Objects of Importance” workshop, moved throughout the room and offered aid to anyone with questions.

Derby ends, North Pole angler named winner

After holding the top derby position for about a month, Austin Nelson of North Pole is officially the Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby winner. His winnings are currently estimated at $15,378, according to Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby Coordinator Kim Royce.

Nelson, originally from Texas, moved up to North Pole with the U.S. Army. He came down to halibut fish in Homer for the first time and reeled in a 252.2-pound halibut on Aug. 16, which he named Henrietta.

Community meetings will gather opinions about changes to school start and end times

The Kenai Peninsula School District is holding three southern peninsula community meetings the week of Sept. 19 to facilitate discussion about changes brought about the new two-tier bus schedule in the 2017-2018 school year. Parents, KPBSD staff, students and community members are encouraged to attend.

Downing stepping away from school board seat

In a bittersweet moment during the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District Board of Education meeting on Monday, Sept. 12, in the Homer High School theater, board member Lynn Hohl moved to “regretfully approve” the resignation of board member Liz Downing.

Penny Vadla, the school board clerk, “regretfully seconded” the motion and the board voted unanimously to allow their colleague of 11 years to move on to the next chapter in her life.

Kimberly Ketter: In Homer for a new start

Kimberly Ketter moved to Homer in May 2015 from her hometown of Cranberry Township, Pa., looking for a fresh start.

Following a painful custody battle which ended with limited rights to see her son, Ketter moved to Homer to live with a family friend who had retired and moved into a house on West Hill. In addition to giving her the chance to gain a handle on her life and find her career path so when she could see her son, she would be more stable, she was able to help the friend with the upkeep of his house.

Shelly Erickson: Roots go deep into Homer

When Homer City Council candidate Shelly Erickson says that Homer is her home, her words refer to roots that go deep into past generations. Both sides of her family have been in Homer for close to 80 years.

Three candidates — Erickson, Tom Stroozas, and Kimberly Ketter — are running for the two seats open on the city council. The two candidates with the highest number of votes will win those seats. Incumbent Gus VanDyke and Bryan Zak are not running again, though Zak is running for mayor.

Tom Stroozas: Wants to serve community

Tom Stroozas is a transplant from the Lower 48, similar to many Homer residents who visited, were captured by Homer’s beauty and decided to make a home here. Now, he looks to the city council as a way to serve the town he has called home since 2006.

“I believe that you should live your life so that when you’re gone it will have mattered and if by being elected to the city council in Homer I can make a difference in the quality of life of everyone who lives here, then that’s a good sense of well-being,” Stroozas said.

Homer student wins scholarship, honored for community service

Homer High School senior Robert Martin became the first Homer youth to receive the Summer of Heroes scholarship from Alaska Communications at the Alaska State Fair on Aug. 28. In partnership with Boys and Girls Club – Alaska, ACS presents six young adults with a $1,500 scholarship to recognize their contributions to their local community through service.

Homer teen gets Dall Ram on family hunt

The first time 13-year-old McKenzy Johnson took a shot at the Dall ram she missed.

Though McKenzy, her father Doug Johnson, and a family friend stood 250 feet from the ram, the distance forced her to shoot from a steep 30-degree angle. The ram, busy head-butting rocks to show his dominance, was making his way down the mountain unaware of the hunters below.

“I had an adrenaline rush and started shaking,” McKenzy said.

Homer schools gain students at start of year

Homer area schools are seeing an unexpected increase in enrollment from previous years at the start of the 2016-17 school year.

McNeil Canyon Elementary started the first day of school with 127 students enrolled, 20 children more than the 107 projected enrollment for the year, said McNeil Canyon Principal Pete Swanson. This is an uptick for the school which has experienced declining enrollment in the last few years.

Homer pickleball picks up medals

Homer pickleball players brought home precious medals after taking top spots in several categories in the Alaska Senior Games on Aug. 16-18.

Janie Leask, Holly Van Pelt, Dru and Tim Renchler, Donna and Dan Holleman, Bill Bloom and Paul Knight competed in doubles and singles categories in several different age categories in Fairbanks. The pickleball players collected nine gold, two silver and two bronze medals. For Homer pickleball, the wins affirmed the players’ skills outside of the hamlet at the end of the road.

Homer football cheer ready for fall season

Mariner cheer captains junior Emily Arno and freshman Riley Doughty bring a combination of experience and can-do spirit to the squad. The one thing they are not are stereotypical prissy cheerleaders, but rather athletes who support other athletes.

For one, their workouts are intense, said head football cheer coach Kelly Jo Ivone. Each practice requires the girls to do cardio, a number of ab exercises from crunches to pike-ups, all of their jumps three times, and all of their kicks.

Get ready for ocean-focused fest Sept. 8-11

The Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Society and Alaska Marine Conservation Council are teaming up to offer Homer one big maritime festival next weekend, Sept. 8-11.

By combining the 24th annual Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Festival with the second annual Halibut Fest, the two organizations avoid hosting overlapping festivals placed closely together on the calendar, said AMCC Community Fisheries Organizer Hannah Heimbuch.

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