Anna Frost

West Homer event makes science fun

West Homer Elementary School is abandoning its tri-yearly science fair competition for a night of science fun for students and their parents. 

Science Palooza will take place on Thursday, April 21, from 5 to 7 p.m. and will feature hands-on activities and the grand opening of the school’s nature trail, said West Homer fourth grade teacher Shellie Worsfold.

Former Homer fishing vessel connected to John Steinbeck Voyage

Editor's Note: This story has been edited to correct Bob Enea's name. 


A phone call from former crew member Jim Herbert informed David and Dennis Fry that the boat they fished on in the 1970s with their father was the Western Flyer — the vessel on which author John Steinbeck took the expedition chronicled in the book, “The Log from the Sea of Cortez.”

Addicts face barriers to help

For people addicted to opiates — or any other substance — there are many barriers to successful recovery, despite the quality of resources that may be available. In Homer, not only is there a lack of care for existing addicts, but there also is a lack of a coordinated approach to prevention.

Homer couple taps trees, turning sap into flavorful syrup

The end of winter in Homer marked the beginning of a short but sweet season for Homer residents Anna Meredith and Jake Beaudoin. 

In the small window of time between the spring thaw and budding leaves, usually between 15-24 days, Meredith and Beaudoin collect sap from approximately 600 Kenai birch trees on the Homer bench along East End Road. By working with willing landowners, they are able to tap the trees and collect thousands of gallons of the sap. 

Homer raises more than $3,000 for Big Brothers Big Sisters

Homer stands out as a major contributor to the Big Brothers Big Sisters of Alaska’s Bowl for Kids’ Sake fundraiser, due to the efforts of Gina Pelaia and her team, the Rolling Realtors. 

The Homer community’s Big Brother Big Sister branch held the event on April 2 and had seven teams participating, according to the Bowl for Kids’ Sake website.

Soccer season gets rolling

The Homer High School boys and girls soccer teams faced their first games of the season against Kenai on Wednesday. They will play their second of the season at home on Saturday, April 9 at 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Boys team

As with many of the other boys sports teams this year, the boys soccer team is built mostly around a core group of sophomores, said sophomore Charles Rohr. After the departures of last year’s seniors, the boys soccer team is focusing on building a strong team over their high school careers. 

Mariners show promise at first track-field meet

Homer High School’s track team finished the Big C Relays Meet in Anchorage on April 1 and 2 with three athletes in sixth place spots. The team has a week’s break before heading back up to The Dome in Anchorage for the Pro Whit Meet on April 15 and 16.

Jack Ritcher, Anna Brock and Lauren Everts came in sixth in their events. Brock, a freshman, placed in shot put, a first for Homer. 

Ritcher’s spot in the 100-meter dash was the first time Homer has had a sprinter make it to the final, said track and field head coach Bill Steyer. 

Marine debris art doubles as decor for prom

Homer High School’s prom on Saturday will be bedecked with sustainable decorations from the Homer community. 

In collaboration with Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies, the prom committee is using marine debris art made by Homer artists from items collected during beach cleanups, said Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies Outreach and Marketing Director Melanie Dufour.

Heroin addiction hooks Homer

Homer has a heroin problem, and it is growing. 

Similar to the fable of the blind men each touching different parts of an elephant and arguing over its identity, only communication within the community can make the problem fully apparent, say those who are working to find solutions to the problem.

Over the last three years, incidents have popped up in Homer that point to a growing trend, said Homer criminal defense lawyer Andy Haas. 

With 15 events, track and field athletes face busy season

Practice for the Homer High School track and field team runs like a well-oiled machine. Athletes work on various training exercises at different stations, while head coach Bill Steyer keeps watch. Steyer sends athletes from one exercise to another, starts a group in a race, and makes sure no one is idle — tasks that keep him ever vigilant. 

“Track’s a pretty busy sport because there’s 15 events to get kids ready for,” Steyer said.

Students look to sea for job opportunities

Since one of Homer’s main industries takes place on the water, it follows that the high school would put a spotlight on the marine trades. From students who spend the summers fishing with their families or working a summer job on a boat, to those who have their sights set on an ocean-related career, the marine trades Focus On Learning series prepares students for success at sea.

Sanders wins support of Dems across Alaska

Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders stood out at the Alaska Democratic caucuses on Saturday as the clear winner. Sanders received 81.6 percent of the delegates and 79.6 percent of the votes, according to results released by the Alaska Democratic Party. 

The 10,617 Alaskans who attended caucuses across the state equaled 119 percent of the 2008 turnout.

Homer Pee Wee hockey team wins state title

Homer’s own Pee Wee Tier III hockey team picked up their third state title in three years on Monday morning at Kevin Bell Arena. The team took the 2015 Pee Wee state title and the same group won the 2014 state title when they played at the Squirt level.

“It’s really great,” said Homer team captain Casey Otis. “We worked so hard all year and then it pays off when you work so hard. It’s awesome.”

Paul Banks volunteer receives Golden Apple

Though Linda Reinhart has spent over four decades as a volunteer at Paul Banks Elementary, a more fitting title would be resident grandmother.

Reinhart, who is indeed referred to as Grandma Reinhart by both staff and students, volunteered off and on for 32 years at the school and has been a consistent volunteer for the past 13 years. In recognition of her 45 years spent working with students, Reinhart received the Golden Apple award at the March 7 school board meeting, just five days after her 80th birthday.

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