Best Bets

Here’s the thing about living in a magical place people pay lots of money to visit. Sometimes we work so dang hard trying to make a living that we don’t have the time to appreciate Homer. I think doctors call this “Carpe diem deficit disorder.” You’re supposed to seize the day and we’re lucky if we can seize 40 winks.

One of these days the Betster would like to take a whole week off to enjoy the Kachemak Bay Shorebird Festival like a tourist. You know, go to some of those talks, take a guided walk and just spend a solid four or five days birding, eating good food, going to concerts and sleeping in between.

Not that last weekend turned out to be a dud. It was pretty awesome, really. The sun shone. The Betster visited with family and friends. The Betster ate four great meals over three days, including Mother’s Day brunch. Oh, and the Betster got to see some pretty cool birds last Friday.

Looking at birds gets you excited to see more birds. It got hard to do that with the late tides in the early evening (see great meals, above). Feeling bird deprived, after working late Tuesday, the Betster went to Mud Bay. The bird alerts said there might be a pulse of shorebirds in.

A pulse? Try a pulsar. All weekend hundreds of birders waited to see that big wave, and what happens? Two days after the festival, shazam, in come the birds. Spread out in an arc maybe two miles long, thousands of shorebirds fed on the incoming tide. Every now and then a flock would burst up in a dervish of wings.

What others see as remarkable in their brief visit becomes the daily fabric of life here at Latitude 59 degrees and some change.

We enjoy Homer as it comes, moment by moment, making us realize we live in the best place on the planet, full of great things to do, like these Best Bets:


BEST DA-DUM DA-DUM BET: In the summer of 1975, no one dared go in the water, not after seeing Steven Spielberg’s “Jaws,” about a great white shark terrorizing a Cape Cod beach town. Catch the classic film for Throwback Thursday at 6 p.m. at the Homer Theatre.

BEST FEET DO YOUR STUFF BET: It’s spring and you know what that means? It’s the Thursday Night Fun Run. Starting at 6 p.m. today at Alice’s Champagne Palace, take a short walk or run around town. Paticipants get a special burger and brew deal at Alice’s. The Thursday Night Fun Run continues through the summer.


BEST PEDAL POWER BET: Bike to Work Week ends Friday. From 7-9 a.m. Friday, the Homer Cycling Club holds an energizer booth at WKFL Park with coffee and treats to give biking (and walking) commuters a little morning boost. At 6:30 p.m. Friday it’s the Homer Cycling Club’s annual potluck celebration at Cook Inletkeeper on Ben Walter’s Lane.


BEST AYE INDEED BET: Interested in helping out with the big Celtfest happening June 19-20 at Karen Hornaday Park? Find out about volunteer opportunities at 5:30 p.m. Friday at Homer City Hall. Volunteers are needed for setup, cleanup and other tasks.


BEST FUN RAISER BETS: The Homestead Restaurant holds two fundraisers this weekend, both for good causes. Go to one or both. At 6 p.m. Friday it’s a wine tasting for KBBI Public Radio 890 AM. Enjoy fine wines and appetizers and bid on desserts. Buy $30 tickets at the station or online at

Then on Saturday from 6-10 p.m. it’s the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies’ annual Spring Fling Dinner Auction. Tickets are $100 at CACS or online at


BEST GO NATURAL BET: Want to learn about the benefit of native Alaska plants like watermelon-berry shoots, fiddleheads and nettles? At 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Center for Alaskan Coastal Studies, Shawn Jackinsky presents “Learn the Value of Native Plants” for the Homer Native Plant Society.