Best Bets

Nineteenth-century teacher and poet Lucy Larcom once wrote, “When April steps aside for May, like diamonds all the rain-drops glisten; fresh violets open every day: to some new bird each hour we listen.” Homer might be missing out on the violets — discounting offerings from the local greenhouses — but the rest of this seems fairly apt. The Shorebird Festival is on its merry way — ”new birds,” check. The forecast shows a mix of mostly-rain with some sun — ”rain-drops glisten,” check. And it is certainly May — and that means all kinds of community fun to put down on your calendar! For details, check out these Best Bets.

BEST CITIZEN SCIENCE BET: Kachemak Crane Watch wants you to help report nesting sandhill crane pairs! Shortly after sandhill cranes arrive in Homer, cranes mate and prepare their nest site. Nesting has commenced when the cranes show up alone, indicating one is sitting on the nest. An accurate count of nesting crane pairs helps Kachemak Crane Watch estimate the local crane population and provides an indication of annual reproductive success. Please report nesting sandhill crane pairs to Kachemak Crane Watch at or by calling 907-235-6262. Leave your name, phone number, and include the location and date when nesting started. For more information, visit

BEST VOLUNTEER TRAINING BET: Are you interested in offering your volunteer services in the community? Join Hospice of Homer for a volunteer orientation and training event on Saturday, May 4 from 10 a.m. to noon. Local volunteers can help with respite care, phone friends, volunteer visitors, memory keepers, end-of-life visits, equipment transport, and appointments and errands. To register for this training event, call Hospice of Homer at 907-235-6899. 265 E Pioneer Ave.

BEST KIDS’ HEALTH FAIR FUN BET: The 31st annual Safe and Healthy Kids Fair is taking place on Saturday, May 4 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Homer High School! This free, family friendly event for children of all ages focuses on safety, health, wellness and fun by offering more than 25 booths and stations with hands on activities and demonstrations. All attendees are invited to enter their names into a drawing for a new bike. Multiple bike sizes for differing age ranges will be available to win! For more information on other events being offered at this year’s fair, visit 600 E Fairview Ave.

BEST MAY DAY CELEBRATION BET: Fireweed Academy is hosting a free May Day event to celebrate summer and community on Saturday, May 4 from 1-4 p.m. Community members are invited to join for an afternoon of local live music with Katie Klan and the Fireweed Frescoes, May Pole dances, flower crown making, face painting, games and a cake walk. Invite your family, friends and neighbors. 813 East End Rd.

BEST SEED AND SOIL WORKSHOP BET: The Homer Seed Library is hosting workshops, sponsored by Homer Soil and Water, at the Homer Public Library to teach community members how to garden! On Saturday, May 4 from 3-4:30 p.m. in the HPL conference room, take part in “Food Gardening for Beginners” and learn how to start an abundant vegetable garden that works with nature and is less work for you! For more information and to register, visit 500 Hazel Ave.

BEST CLIMATE-SMART HOMER HOMES BET: Homer Drawdown invites you to one of their first workshops, led by former Alaska Housing Finance Corporation program manager Scott Waterman, to spur energy efficiency project planning to lower your home’s carbon footprint and your heating bills. Heat, air and moisture are driving forces in your home that determine comfort, health and safety, durability and efficiency. This session, hosted by Kachemak Bay Campus on Tuesday, May 7 from 6-7:30 p.m., is designed to help you understand these flowing forces to make more informed decisions on maintenance, repairs or remodels in your home. Show up at 5:30 p.m. for a shared soup meal before the meeting kick-off at 6 p.m. 533 E Pioneer Ave.

BEST LIVE HEALTH TALK BET: Join Dr. Rob Downey on the Seaworthy Functional Medicine Facebook Page on Thursday, May 9 at 5 p.m. for another session of Down with Downey: Live at Five. This presentation, “Food as Medicine,” is a deep dive into the transformative power of whole food to make you healthy. Learn what really matters about food choices, e.g. dairy, gluten, refined sugar, etc. An in-depth Q&A will follow after Downey’s short presentation. If you have a question about a talk or are interested in learning about a particular topic, send questions or topic ideas to If you’ve missed a past talk and want to catch up, all previously recorded talks are available at vimeo.comsphosp. For more information, visit