Local News

Spit Run organizers hope to make annual race ‘fun and festive for everyone’

If running shoes and running shorts don’t make you excited, maybe a warmup in a jump suit to “Rocky” will.

The coordinators of the June 29 Homer Spit Run are committed to making all the participants feel like Sylvester Stallone.

“The goal this year is to make the run fun and festive for everyone, from the top placing runners to the stroller walkers and volunteers,” said Mary Kate Green, one of the event coordinators.

Bayview Park work party set

A Bayview Park work party will be held at the park, located at the top of Main Street, from 10 a.m.-3 p.m. July 10. Participants are asked to bring rakes, shovels, wheelbarrows and buckets. Some food and snacks will be provided, but volunteers also can feel free to bring picnics. 

Motorhome parking offered

The city of Homer and the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitors Center have set up summer parking for motorhomes in downtown Homer and Old Town. 

Visitors can park large motorhomes and walk to nearby shopping and dining. 

The downtown parking lot is in the old middle school parking lot on Woodside Avenue off Pioneer Avenue. To get to the lot, head north on Pioneer Avenue from the Sterling Highway and turn onto Woodside Avenue on the west side.

DEC extends public review of West Eagle drilling plan

The Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation last week extended for 10 days the public review of Buccaneer Alaska’s Oil Discharge Prevention and Contingency Plan, or C-plan, for its West Eagle drilling prospect off Basargin Road and East End Road. The new deadline for comments from reviewing agencies and other interested parties is June 26.

Buccaneer submitted its C-plan application on March 18. On May 10 DEC issued a request for additional information from Buccaneer. Buccaneer sent the requested information and plan revisions, DEC confirmed.

Effects of hard winter on area’s fish, game still being assessed

As Homer’s winters go, this past season was a lulu that just seemed to go on forever, with near-freezing temperatures lingering deep into May, well beyond the normal advent of green-up. 

An area biologist with the Alaska Department of Fish and Game said he won’t be surprised if population surveys of moose show decreased survivability among the ungulates, especially among cows and calves.

Quick response stops half-acre wildfire off East End Road

With the Kenai Peninsula under very high to extreme fire danger, a prompt response by Alaska Division of Forestry, Homer Volunteer Fire Department and Kachemak Emergency Services firefighters stopped a grass fire in its tracks on Alan Street off East End Road about 2 p.m. Sunday afternoon. 

Between the time when firefighters arrived and they got it contained the fire had doubled in size and was running upslope, said Andy Alexandrou, a Division of Forestry public information officer in Soldotna.

Enstar gas line build-out — questions answered

Anyone wondering about the progress of the Enstar Natural Gas trunk and distribution lines on the lower Kenai Peninsula doesn’t have to look far. From Anchor Point along the Sterling Highway to West Hill Road and Fairview Avenue, big 8-inch lines snake in and out of the ground on the trunk line, now about 45 percent complete. On side streets, workers in hard hats and bright green safety vests bring the 2-inch and 4-inch distribution lines to homes and businesses in Kachemak City.

No changes in derby mean there’s still a lot of ways to win

Let’s hear it for the women anglers leading the 2013 Homer Jackpot Halibut Derby. 

On May 27, April Saputski of Rathdrum, Idaho, hooked into a 142.2-pound halibut while fishing with Capt. Scott Glosser of Captain Scott’s Sport Fishing aboard the Mako. With the largest fish caught to date in this year’s derby, Saputski is in the running for the $10,000 jackpot prize.

Volunteers needed as city prepares to host governor’s picnic July 25

The annual governor’s summer picnics started in 1959 when Alaska became the 49th state. A full page ad from the 1960 Knik Arm Courier contained the following information:

“The 2nd Annual Governor’s Picnic will be held at the Chugiak Carnival Grounds on Sunday, June 12, beginning at noon. Governor Egan will give an address. An invitation to President Eisenhower to attend has been sent by telegram. There will be a barbecue, rides and bingo at this grand community gathering.

Man dies in motorcycle crash

A motorcycle crash on Sunday afternoon killed a Homer man. Travis Coffey, 34, died of his injuries at the crash scene near Mile 19 East End Road. No services have been announced yet for Coffey.

According to an Alaska State Trooper press release, Coffey rode his 2000 Triumph motorcycle with a friend riding on a separate motorcycle. The pair headed east when Coffey lost control of his motorcycle and slid into the oncoming lane, hitting a 2010 GMC Sierra truck driven by a 20-year-old Delta Junction man.

Tustumema’s return delayed again

The return to service of the Alaska State Ferry M/V Tustumena has been delayed again. The Alaska Marine Highway System announced last week that the Tustumena will not return to service until July 23. Repair and renovations started last November at the Seward Ship’s Drydock, and the Tustumena originally was to return to service on April 17. Because of unexpected steel work and other repairs, that was delayed until May 29 and then delayed again until July 7.

Auction Block claim rejected

An administrative law judge has rejected a claim for Kevin Hogan and the Auction Block against the city of Homer, city attorney Thomas Klinkner announced in a memorandum to Mayor Beth Wythe and the Homer City Council at its meeting Monday night.

“We are excited about that,” attorney Holly Wells said at the meeting.

Wells said the city is prepared for an appeal. Hogan, a former city council member, said that on advice of his lawyer he did not want to comment on the decision.

Sterling Highway work begins

Traffic is backed up on the Sterling Highway last Friday near Pioneer Avenue as workers replace curb cutouts and sidewalk ramps at street and driveway corners. Work was being done between Mile 170 to 173 Sterling Highway. Motorists can expect lane restrictions and flagging on the road and should be alert for heavy equipment and construction workers. The work is part of a larger project to repave the highway from Mile 150 to 173, Tall Tree Avenue north of Anchor Point to Homer. Repaving is expected to begin by the end of June and be finished by the end of August.

Bag ban repeal initiative certified for Oct. 1 ballot

Homer City Clerk Jo Johnson certified that a citizen initiative to repeal a plastic bag ban had at least the 230 signatures necessary to put the question on the Oct. 1 ballot.

Petition organizer Justin Arnold submitted 300 signatures, and of those, the clerk’s office determined 260 were of registered voters in city limits. To be valid, organizers needed at least 20 percent of the votes cast in the last city election.

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