Years Ago

Homer happenings from years past

20 years ago

An outbreak of hepatitis A appeared to have run its course after four cases were confirmed in Homer, prompting statewide concern. The people were infected at a holiday party held by Icicle Seafoods. News of the outbreak spread after Icicle officials started contacting more than 275 people who had attended the party.

An Alaska Division of Health and Social Services report linked the outbreak to the party and to cold crab legs. The source could have been a food worker or anyone who went through the buffet. It also could have come from the pre-cooked crab legs provided by Icicle for the party. Of 26 people who ate the crab, only six showed symptoms. Sixteen food preparers were tested, and none were positive for hepatitis A.

— From the issue of Jan. 18, 2001

30 years ago

Smoky Bay Co-operative struggled to survive after sales figures showed the natural foods store lost about $200 a day, according to a letter sent to members by the board of directors. Smoky Bay succeeded Homer Natural Foods after the failing store was on the verge of closing in 1989. People who wanted to see a natural foods store continue raised funds to create the co-operative and keep the local food option going.

Getting members to shop at the store and letting potential customers know they could shop without being members were reasons cited by co-op vice president Michael McNiven as why revenues were not higher. Pricing also caused hard feelings, because it reflected the member price and didn’t show a 10% surcharge added for nonmembers at the register. High overhead costs also were caused by “management by consensus” system. The board scrapped that system, and costs dropped.

— From the issue of Jan. 17, 1991

50 years ago

The issue of Jan. 14, 1971, is missing from the Homer News archives.