McKibben Jackinsky

Southern peninsula schools find place in this weekend’s conference tourney

Last week’s basketball games wrapped up the Peninsula Conference season. Almost. This weekend is the conference tournament. Next weekend is the state championship.

Representing the southern Kenai Peninsula in the conference tournament are girls teams from Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik and Seldovia, and boys teams from Nanwalek, Nikolaevsk, Ninilchik and Seldovia.

Diversity drives Connections

Kachemak Selo and other schools off the state road system make it challenging for the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District to provide education to the borough’s younger residents. Add to that a mixture of languages, religions, cultures and family situations and the challenges only increase.

That’s where the Connections program comes in handy, a homeschool program offered solely to students within KPBSD.

Kachemak Selo: New school, hybrid distance learning program part of plan

The morning’s hush is disturbed only by the sound of a crow’s wings at it flies just beyond the edge of the bluff. The sun is still on the distant side of the Kenai Mountains, its light beginning to spread down the Fox River flats and across the surface of Kachemak Bay. The bay’s whispered surf is barely audible in the morning stillness. 

HHS students named ‘National Merit Scholars’

Three Homer High School seniors — Evan Boyer, Patrick Latimer and Jonas Noomah — have been named finalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program, according to Lin Hampson, HHS advisor.

“The principal was notified and then he notified them here at school,” said Hampson of the good news passed on by HHS Principal Doug Waclawski.

Middle school wrestlers bring home Boroughs medals

It was a big Saturday for 10 Homer Middle School wrestlers participating at Boroughs competition at Skyview Middle School in Soldotna.

“We did great,” said Coach Daniel Rios. “Our season was hard, but it all turned out well in the end. Ryan (Hicks) and Wayne (Newman) were my two surprises. It was an awesome year.”

Wrestling in the 100-pound division, Wayne Newman, the team co-captain, earned the borough champion first-place title.

Anchor Point Snow Rondi: a Time to "Let Loose"

Lack of snow isn’t enough to stop Anchor Point residents when it comes to their annual Snow Rondi. Snow or no snow, the Rondi kicks off Saturday morning and events are planned through Sunday.

The theme — “let loose” — is the perfect reminder that when it comes to fun this time of year, Homer’s neighbors to the north know snow is not a requirement. Just ask Dan Coe, president of the Anchor Point Chamber of Commerce, organizer of the annual event.

Popeye wrestling rolls out mat for 2015 season

After a kick-off banquet Feb. 9, the Popeye Wrestling Club began practice for wrestlers ages 10 and older Tuesday and holds its first practice for ages 9 and younger Feb. 23. 

Jason Cavasos is the program’s head coach and oversees practices at Homer Middle School. Bubba Wells does the same at Anchor Point, with practices at Chapman School.

The age of wrestlers registered with the club is wide-ranging.

Southern peninsula keeps hoops hot

Seldovia-Nikolaevsk

For a small school off the road system, participating in events with teams from other schools can prove challenging. Last week the tables were turned, as teams traveled to the south side of Kachemak Bay to play in the Seldovia Basketball Invitational Tournament. Among them were Nikolaevsk School’s boys and girls teams, Birchwood Christian School’s boys and girls teams from the Chugiak area, and the Kodiak ESS co-ed team, with athletes from Port Lions, Ouzinkie, Karluk and Larson Bay.  

Land’s End introduces its new executive chef

When Billy Roberson, Land’s End Resort’s former executive chef, left Homer for the Baranof Hotel in Juneau, resort management had only to look in-house for a replacement: Matt Orchard, former sous chef and PM kitchen manager. 

Judging by evaluations submitted by guests a Feb. 5 “unveiling” of Orchard in his new role, he and the food coming out of his kitchen are a hit.

Mariner hockey all the way to semifinals, loses to Wasilla

The Mariner Co-op Hockey Team went into the North Star Conference Championships at the Menard Arena Wasilla as the fifth-seeded team, with peninsula teams Soldotna fourth-seeded and Kenai sixth.

In the opening day of play Feb. 5, Kenai faced Colony and fell 5-0 in the single-elimination tournament. Homer was matched with Soldotna, the SoHi team taking a one-point early lead in the first period and maintaining their lead through the second period of play.

Sea Otters first, Warriors second at Nenana tourney

In a display of their on-land abilities, the Seldovia Sea Otter boys basketball team claimed first place in the eight-team Nenana Invitational Basketball Tournament on Saturday, winning 62-59 against Effie Kokrine. On the girls’ side of the action, the Nikolaevsk Warriors took second place to home team Nenana in a 40-36 game.

The Nikolaevsk boys placed sixth in the tournament, losing to Nenana, with a game score of 55-31. The Seldovia girls placed seventh to Tri-Valley in a 60-49 match-up.  

February keeps focus on heart health

Heart-shaped cards. Heart-shaped boxes of candy. Heart-shaped balloons. All trappings of heartfelt celebrations centered around Valentine’s Day.

For Melanie Miller and her husband, Ron, their heart reminder comes in the shape of their 18-month-old daughter, Chloe, who was born with a congenital heart defect, or CHD.  

Redbeard walks the plank

Inspired by a “Pirates — Seek Treasure in a Good Book” theme, pre-K through second-grade students at Paul Banks Elementary School set a record with their 2014 readathon: 160,650 minutes read since Jan. 12, said teacher Wendy Todd, an organizer of the event.

Maybe it was the theme. Maybe it was the promise by Redbeard the Pirate, aka Principal Eric Pederson, to walk the plank if the students read 120,000 minutes.

Students prove themselves, school employment ready

Once again, Homer High School was named “most employable school” in Kenai Peninsula Borough School District CTSO, Career Technical Student Organization, competition. 

“I think Homer is going on year five as most employable school,” said Dan Bohrnsen, coordinator of this year’s competition at Kenai Central High School, held Jan. 29. “Homer has done very well. This year they tied with SoHi and, instead of a flip of the coin, we gave them both first-place plaques.”

Cabin Fever show paves way for new AP library location

For years, at the annual Cabin Fever Variety Show songs have been sung, guitars and ukuleles strummed, pianos played, jokes told and stories recited. Local cooks have offered up cakes and cookies, pies and breads. Raffle tickets have been sold and prizes won.

All of that has been done with one goal: raising enough funds to get the Anchor Point Public Library a home of its own. It is currently located in 1,600-square-feet of space at one end of the Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 10221 building.

Mariner Co-Op Hockey at Wasilla Regions

After an action-packed season, the Mariner Co-Op Hockey Team — with skaters from Homer Flex, Homer High, Kachemak Selo and Voznesenka — begins single-elimination play at Regions competition at the Brett Ice Arena in Wasilla today.

Up until last weekend, it was unclear if their first match-up would be against Soldotna or Kenai.

“We have and can beat both teams,” Mariner Head Coach John Carlin had told the Homer News. 

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