McKibben Jackinsky

Ditch work may give some relief to erosion-plagued subdivision

A break in the weather has allowed Homer Public Works crews to do additional cleanup before winter takes hold of the southern Kenai Peninsula. That includes removing debris and opening ditches in the Baycrest Subdivision, specifically along Mount Augustine Drive, Rene Court and Judy Rebecca Court.

“We didn’t change any drainage patterns. We just deepened and cleaned out the ditches that existed,” said Carey Meyer, public works director.

Mariners take second in End of Road Shootout

Four teams and six games kept the Kevin Bell Arena hopping with hockey action for the End of the Road Shootout, Nov. 20-22. Homer was host to the Soldotna Stars, Bartlett Golden Bears and Houston Hawks.

The undefeated Stars went home with the tournament trophy, while Homer held second place with one loss, Houston was third and Bartlett fourth. 

HHS musicians chosen for performance group

Outstanding musicians from Alaska, Idaho, Montana, Oregon, Washington and Wyoming have been selected to participate in a 2015 NAfME, the National Association for Music Educators, All-Northwest performing group. The high school bands, orchestras and choirs will meet in Spokane, Wash., Feb. 12-15.

Among those chosen are six Homer High School students:

Miles Catlin, French horn, wind symphony;

Zak Holschen, bass clarinet, wind symphony;

Kindergarteners: ‘Let’s cook a turkey!’

The students in teacher Wendy Todd’s kindergarten class at Paul Banks Elementary School have, as in years past, generously donated their tips for making the perfect Thanksgiving turkey.

Todd sparked the youngsters’ creativity with the lead sentence, “Let’s cook a turkey!” Details provided by the youngsters reflect a sense of food preparation order, valued family traditions and delight in the holiday.

Homer’s recipe for a happy Thanksgiving

Forget the 9 a.m. posted start time for Kachemak Bay Lions Thanksgiving Basket Program’s packing of food boxes on Saturday. The parking lot outside the fellowship hall of Homer United Methodist Church, where the activity was taking place, was filled with eager volunteers long before the clock’s short hand pointed to 9 and the long hand pointed to 12.

Shootout brings ‘hot hockey action’ to arena

Bundle up against the keep-the-ice-frozen temps of the Kevin Bell Arena and prepare for some “hot hockey action” this weekend as the Homer Mariners take on teams from Houston, Bartlett and SoHi in the three-day End of the Road Shootout. 

“These teams represent different areas — Anchorage, the valley and the peninsula — so it’s a collective group and will be exciting to see where we stand,” said Mariner Head Coach John Carlin.

DDF tournaments ahead, judges needed

With two tournaments under their belt, the Homer High School DDF — drama, debate and forensics — team is readying for more to come.

“They’re looking really strong. There’s a lot of new kids on the team, but they’re stepping up to the challenges, digging in and going forth,” said Head Coach Amy Johnson. “The returning students on the team are welcoming them in and saying ‘Let’s go do this thing.’”

Emblem club: dedicated to 'truth, justice, charity'

Four years after Emblem Club No. 350 began in Homer, the following notice ran in the two-month-old Homer News in March 1964: “The Emblem Club is now running the Bingo at the Elks on Wednesday nights at 8 p.m. $2 a card with two jackpots. Public invited.”

More than 50 years later, the Homer club is still going strong, including the Wednesday night Bingo games that help fund the club’s scholarship effort.

End of swim, dive season

Three Mariner swimmers — Remi Nagle, Lauren Kuhns and Greg Smith — and two divers — Ian Hall and Annali Metz — competed at State championships at Bartlett High School in Anchorage last week. 

Nagle swam two events, the 50 freestyle and 100 butterfly. Kuhns swam the 500 freestyle and Smith the 100 backstroke. 

Homer’s Hutt named MVP at all-state game

For the 38th year, Al Aska Shriners sponsored the annual North-South Classic, an opportunity for senior football athletes from around the state to join forces in one last football game of the season. Representing the Mariners were Sheldon Hutt, Patrick Rainwater, Collin MacCampbell, Connor Seay and Ben Knisely, with Ian Lowe assisting Mariner Head Coach Josh Fraley with coaching duties.

Hutt was named MVP of the Nov. 1 game, “so that’s pretty awesome,” said Fraley. “He played really, really well.”

Heliport, helipad ordinance causes some confusion

Sometimes more isn’t better, it’s more confusing. Case in point, city of Homer Ordinance 14-49, with 136 words in the title. While it was clear it had to do with helipads and heliports, small wonder it caused confusion.

“I have received comments from people that did not understand the ordinance,” City Manager Walt Wrede told the city council at its Oct. 27 meeting.

Helping the helpers

Snow or no snow, it’s becoming that time of year when resources get stretched a bit thin. Summertime employment comes to an end, hours of darkness outweigh hours of daylight, temperatures drop and the holiday season arrives. 

For some, it takes a helping hand to make it through the months ahead.

All that makes the latest activities benefiting the Homer Community Food Pantry perfectly timed.

Ballot counts change numbers, but not results

Veterans Day may have been a holiday for some, but not for state Elections workers, who continued to count early and absentee ballots cast in the Nov. 4 general election.

By day’s end, the independent team of Bill Walker and Byron Mallott still lead Gov. Sean Parnell and his running mate, Dan Sullivan, 117,130 or 47.94 percent of the vote to 113,126 or 46.30 percent. In the U.S. Senate race, Republican candidate Dan Sullivan remained the front-runner, leading Sen. Mark Begich 119,579 or 48.58 percent of the vote to 111,668 or 45.37 percent.

Homer: city on the move

Editor's Note: 

Last week, the Homer News looked at erosion affecting residents of Judy Rebecca Court in the Baycrest Subdivision. This week, the causes of erosion throughout Homer and its possible impacts are explored.

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Homeowners seek solution to erosion

Since May, Gee Denton and her neighbors, Scott and Carolyn VanZant, have battled to save their Baycrest Subdivision homes from the ravages of erosion. The sensitivity of these hillside properties, located on the Kachemak Bay side of the Sterling Highway as it climbs to the top of Baycrest Hill, is well known.

Why then, Denton and the VanZants wonder, did the city’s natural gas distribution project allow for disturbing an area recognized for its fragile nature?

Kachemak Group brings together century of real estate experience

With remodeling going on around him, Terry Yager, owner-broker of Kachemak Group Real Estate, formerly Re/Max of Homer, is settling into his new office space at 320 W. Pioneer Ave. 

Active in the local real estate scene since 1995, Yager operated the Re/Max franchise from 512 E. Pioneer Ave. However, he has sold that building to Malone Insurance, dropped the Re/Max connection and launched Kachemak Group Real Estate with a total of eight agents, including himself that offer “well over 100 years of experience,” he said.

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