MICHAEL ARMSTRONG

New judge assigned in recall suit

Despite an expedited court schedule in a lawsuit by three Homer City Council members seeking to stop a June 13 recall election, public notice of the election will proceed. The city has to issue a notice 30 days in advance, or by May 18. It also has to print election ballots soon. The deadline to register to vote in that election is May 14.

Town Crier

The Kenai Peninsula Borough Solid Waste Department Central Peninsula Landfill and Transfer Facilities and Sites summer operating hours have started. All facilities are now open seven days a week. Hours of operation are: Anchor Point, 24 hours daily; Homer Transfer Site, 8 a.m.-5:45 p.m. Monday-Saturday and noon-4 p.m. Sunday; McNeil Canyon Transfer Site, 7 a.m.-7 p.m. daily; Ninilchik Transfer Site, 24 hours daily.

Shorebirds visit right on time

As if turning a switch, thousands of shorebirds arrived May 3, pushed north and west by a storm with winds up to 35 mph. Predictions that the peak of the migration would hit right during the 25th annual Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival May 4-7 proved spot on, justifying a decision to move the festival up a week this year.

Jewel to play at Salmonfest

Continuing a tradition of featuring women musicians to close out the final night, Salmonfest this year brings back to the lower Kenai Peninsula one of Homer’s most successful performers, singer-songwriter Jewel. The daughter of Atz Kilcher and Nedra Carroll, Jewel grew up in Homer as part of the musically talented extended Kilcher family.

Best Bets

Who loves you, Betsteroids? That’s right — your mama. Don’t forget the annual celebration of mothers this Sunday, May 14. That’s the second Sunday in May. Sunday, kids. Sunday.

Birds return for shorebird month First Friday

The Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival weekend brings not only shorebirds to Homer, but art about birds. For First Friday, several galleries feature exhibits of bird art. At the Art Shop Gallery, it’s “All About Birds,” the title of a show with works by Byron Birdsal, Shirley Timmreck, Taz Tally, Laural Sabin and Nancy Wise. At Fireweed Gallery, watercolor artist MaryBee Kaufmann considers the threats to seabirds, especially the common murre, with her show, “Beacons of Circumstance.” Fireweed also features the annual Kachemak Bay Watercolor Society’s show, including its popular collaborative work, where individual artists paint a section of a larger painting. This year’s piece is “Off-loading.”

Shorebird celebrates 25 years

The 25th annual Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival celebrates its silver anniversary with a look backward to one of the first birders to document the annual arrival of shorebirds to Homer. George West, who died in 2016, is the festival’s featured artist. His painting of five shorebirds serves as the festival’s logo this year.

Homer gives huge welcome to USS Hopper

Fifty flags on the Homer Spit beach and perhaps 500 people greeted USS Hopper, the Pearl Harbor, Hawaii, based U.S. Navy destroyer, as it rounded Coal Point at the end of the Spit on Saturday. Homer Downtown Rotary provided U.S. Flags, and rows of them lined the beach in front of Land’s End Resort. As Hopper pulled past the Spit, rows of sailors lined the decks. One family, Ralph Crane, his daughter Joy Overson and his granddaughter Faith Overson, waved a large American flag and an Alaska flag.

Town Crier

The Homer Legislative Information Office at 270 W. Pioneer Ave. is open from 8:30 a.m.-12:30 p.m. and 1-4:30 pm. Monday-Friday, with special hours to accommodate Legislative hearings and teleconferences outside of normal hours. For more information, call 235-7878. The LIO’s last day is this Friday, May 5.

Homer News wins Best Weekly

At the Alaska Press Club awards banquet in Anchorage on Saturday, the Homer News won first place for Best Weekly in the 2016 awards year. Honored for their efforts were editor and publisher Lori Evans, reporter Michael Armstrong, former reporter Anna Frost and former graphics artist Aaron Carpenter. Of the paper, judge Cheryl Thompson said, “Newsy, scrappy. Terrific photos … I love everything about it.”

Baxter promoted to HPD investigative sergeant

In a ceremony at Monday’s Homer City Council meeting, former Homer Police Officer Larry Baxter was promoted to sergeant. Baxter’s wife, Tamarron, pinned new insignia on her husband. Mayor Bryan Zak also administered the oath of office. Sgt. Baxter now serves as the department’s investigative sergeant, replacing Sgt. Lary Kuhns, who retired last month. In his new role as the department’s detective, Baxter investigates major crimes such as murder, sexual assault and burglary. A U.S. Army veteran, Baxter previously worked with the Saint Paul Police Department.

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