Homer’s Best Bets

Recently while walking the Spit, the Betster noticed an odd phenomenon: Homer cars sure do have a lot of bumper stickers. At least the B. thinks they could be Homer cars. They have Alaska plates, and the “no Pebble” stickers suggest a local origin. 

Stroll through any parking lot in town and you’ll see a predominance of proclamations. “No Frankenfish.” “Eat more fish.” “KBBI AM 890.” “Support Your Local Poets.” A new one is “Homer shares the road,” with images of cars, bicycles and walkers. I even saw a tattered sticker from the big-box store debates, a vintage “Keep Homer Weird.” Portland probably stole that from us.

“Bumper sticker” would be stretching the term. In Homer, a bumper offers barely enough real estate. To really get your message across, you need the front bumper and the back of the trunk, too. Some people use duct tape to patch up rusty divots. In Homer, we use bumper stickers.

Oddly enough, while Homer bumper stickers support all variety of political expressions, come election season you don’t see as many candidate stickers as you might expect. Elections can be transient. We’re after permanence. Some sentiments never go out of style. One of the Betster’s fave local stickers is “We’re here because we’re not all there,” a Homer koan if there is one. It should be the city motto. But you know the Betster’s motto: There are always cool things to do in this town, like these Best Bets:


BEST GO GREEN BET: That’s Pastor Al Green, who wrote “Take Me to the River,” which is what the Betster immediately thought of with Kachemak Heritage Land Trust’s Anchor River Celebration, “Take Me to the River” community event. It’s a great song, but the free community event also is cool, with a barbecue, live music by the Howlin’ Whales and some speechifying. It all starts at 6 p.m. today at the Coho Campground in Anchor Point. See story, page 2.


BEST SWEET DREAMS BET: One of the most amazing sights in the Fourth of July parade was a burlesque performer on the Tails and Tassels float. You try driving a vintage truck wearing a petticoat skirt like Topanga Tapper did. See what she and the ladies have come up with in “I Dream of Burlesque,” showing at 9 p.m. today and Friday at Alice’s Champagne Palace. Tickets are $15 in advance, $20 at the door.


BEST @#&%!! BET: “Glengarry Glen Ross” by David Mamet has become legendary for its use of profanity, but it’s also a tough play about four real estate salesmen trying to hang on to their careers — and their lives. It’s the latest Pier One Theatre production, opening at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the little theater on the Spit.


BEST ALWAYS LEARNING BET: That’s what the Betster loves about our local scientists. Just when you think you know everything, they have something new to teach you. Think you know about fish? Learn more with this week’s Kachemak Bay Research Reserve Discovery Lab, “Sport Fishing in Kachemak Bay: Halibut, Salmon and Rockfish,” from 1-3 p.m. Friday at the Alaska Islands and Ocean Visitor Center.


BEST OF THE BEST BET: With his elegant, spare approach to drawing and painting, artist Byron Birdsall has become one of Alaska’s most prominent and popular artists. Check out his new work, “Byron Birdsall’s Alaska,” a collection of illustrations. He signs his new book from 1-6 p.m. Saturday at the Art Shop Gallery.


BEST DIG IT BET: The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities is getting close to moving some dirt for two big Homer projects, a stoplight at Main Street and the Sterling Highway, and the Lake Street rehabilitation. Learn more, ask questions and share concerns in an open house from 4-7 p.m. Tuesday at the Best Western Bidarka Inn.