On her visits to Alaska over the past 20 years, like a lot of visitors to Homer, singer-songwriter Dar Williams said she came to really, really love the town. She has been here several times, in 1997, 2000 and 2003.
In the Oct. 3 municipal election, Kenai Peninsula Borough residents will elect a new borough mayor and vote on school board and assembly members. Residents in the unincorporated areas of the city also will consider a ban on commercial cannabis with Proposition 1, where a “yes” vote approves the ban (see story, page 1, Business &Real Estate).
If the elephant in the room in the Homer City Council race is the recall campaign, candidate Sarah Vance could be considered the elephant trainer. She served as one of the co-chairs of Heartbeat of Homer, the group organized to back the attempted recall against council members Donna Aderhold, David Lewis and Catriona Reynolds, and became the spokesperson for the recall group.
If elected to the Homer City Council, candidate Rachel Lord would be the youngest member of a council that has commonly tilted toward people in their 50s and 60s. Along with fellow candidate Sarah Vance, 38, she represents a generation of Homer residents often lost in political discussions — 30-something people struggling to raise families and build careers in a town with a high cost of living and limited job opportunities.
Like a lot of Homer immigrants, city council candidate Stephen Mueller moved here with his wife, Robyn, after he fell in love with the seaside setting.
All around Kachemak Bay the past weeks, people have reported large runs of pink salmon in places never seen before — at least in significant numbers. Last week at Beluga Slough, pink salmon ran all the way up into the slough and in a drainage ditch leading to the city’s stormwater drainage system. At Mariner Park on the Homer Spit last Friday, children from Little Fireweed Academy working on the Burning Basket ran up a small creek leading into the slough and yelled “Salmon! Salmon!” at pinks passing by.
With campaigning for elections underway in Alaska, the Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities (ADOT&PF) last week sent out a press release reminding Alaskans that the use of public right of ways for political advertising is prohibited. Advertising in right of ways or visible and legible from state right of ways are prohibited.
Homer visitor “Kajun” Kenny Joffrion stands by his truck and refrigerated trailer loaded with fish, red beans and rice as he prepared to head south to Houston, Texas. Reached by phone in Montana last week, Joffrion said he planned to arrive in Houston on Monday and start cooking for Hurricane Harvey victims.
As south Texas recovers from the devastation last month from Hurricane Harvey, several lower Kenai Peninsula men have started relief efforts in the Houston area. Former Anchor Point resident Chase McKinney, now living in Sugar Land, Texas, this week shifted his work from rescuing people stranded in flooded areas of Houston to getting supplies to people in shelters.
By Michael Armstrong
The 14th annual Homer Burning Basket project of community interactive, impermanent art, is presented to Homer this coming Sunday afternoon at the build site at Mariner Park on the Homer Spit. Construction continues today through Saturday, and volunteers are invited to help finish the basket or provide nightly security.
Tree roots. Root causes. Square roots. Getting to the root. Root beer. Grass roots. Root chords.
Reading social media last week after the start of the Kenai Peninsula Borough school year, a reader might have thought kids got transported to school in the back of a Ford Model A pickup truck — which, yes, was how the lucky children of the Homer Heights School actually did get to class in 1940. Parents complained about young children getting on the wrong buses, transportation taking two hours to get home, and late pick ups and drop offs.
First Friday kicks off the Labor Day weekend with the last summer showing of art shows. At the Homer Council on the Arts, the show’s title, “From the Earth,” also will be reflected in a special event for a gallery show: a potluck reception with gifts from local harvests. Brian Grobleski’s photographs of food contrast with original earth art (as in made from) — ceramic art by David Kaufmann, Maygen Lotscher, Gundega Snepste and Jeff Szarzi. Grobleski’s photographs were featured in Eve and Eivin Kilcher’s cookbook, “Homestead Kitchen,” and he will be signing books at the show.
In the 18 months since Alaska started the licensing process for legal, commercial cannabis, only three Homer area licenses have been issued. All are for cultivation facilities and outside city limits and in the Kenai Peninsula Borough. If a retail pot shop goes as planned, though, the city of Homer could see its first commercial enterprise by the holidays.
Since its start in May 1993, the annual Kachemak Bay Wooden Boat Society Festival has moved in both location and time of year. Now in its 25th year, the weekend of boats and fun has settled into a comfortable spot by the Pier One Theatre campground on the Spit for the first part of September.
Basket build starts Sept. 2
With a mariachi band, one of Homer’s oldest restaurants, Don Jose’s, celebrated its 35th anniversary on Sunday. Carmen Ramos and her husband and the restaurant’s namesake, Jose Ramos, started the Pioneer Avenue restaurant in March 1982. They met in Los Angeles and came to Homer in 1980 before settling into the restaurant business. Over the years the Ramos family has opened restaurants in Homer, Soldotna, Kodiak, Kenai and Anchorage, but now runs the Homer and Anchorage restaurants. They also own the Harbor Grill on the Spit and have invested in local real estate.