Arts Briefs

HCOA holds Salon Series

The Homer Council on the Arts presents “Short Stories on Heated Moments,” at 7 p.m. Friday and Saturday. Hannah Heimbuch has gathered a group of storytellers who present original, impromptu stories that will spark imagination and inspiration. Its second Salon Series this season, the event is “designed as a fluid experience that shifts from cocktail party to intimate performance, and back again,” said HCOA Director Peggy Paver. “The intent is to give the audience the opportunity to witness and talk with their neighbors about the performances while giving our local talent an opportunity to share their emerging thoughts and ideas.” Admission is $25 general, $20 HCOA members, with beer and wine available for purchase.

People interested in directing a Salon Series can contact Paver at HCOA 235-4288,

Funding for Women Writers Retreat Cabins Almost Complete

As of Jan. 22, funding has been secured or pledged for five of the six cabins that will comprise the Storyknife Writers Retreat. Each of the cabins will be named for an Alaskan woman of distinction. There is one more cabin that is available for support. Donations in the amount of $50,000 give the funder naming privileges.

Last May, the final funds for the main house were secured. Former Alaska Writer Laureate, Peggy Shumaker, and her husband Joe Usibelli matched and doubled the donations of one-hundred and twelve people. The main house will be named after the late Homer writer and poet, Eva Saulitis.

In its first two years of operation, Storyknife has been able to offer five women month-long residencies in which to devote their time solely to writing. When the entire residency is built, it will be able to offer at minimum 42 women residencies each year.

The vision of author Dana Stabenow, Storyknife seeks to support women writers by providing uninterrupted time for development of their craft. In 1989, Stabenow won a residency at Hedgebrook, a retreat for women writers on Whidbey Island in Washington. The profound impact of that residency, and the fact that Hedgebrook receives many more applications than they have spots to host writers, has inspired her to develop such an opportunity for women writers.

Stabenow hopes that the remaining funds will be raised before the end of this summer, so that construction can be started in September and finished during the following year. At that point, the residency would be fully operational, staffing an executive director and site manager/chef, in 2020. For more information, please visit

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