Winter Carnival honors Coast Guard

The landscape might be silver and shimmery with ice and snow, but for this year’s annual Homer Winter Carnival, it’s golden days as the city celebrates the 50th anniversary of the U.S. Coast Guard in Homer.

Dating back to Jan. 5, 1969, when the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Ironwood arrived her as our first homeported Coast Guard vessel, the theme of the carnival is “Coasting into Winter.”

Sponsored by the Homer Chamber of Commerce and Visitor Center, the carnival includes a three-day basketball tournament, ice skating, food and evening fun. The highlight of the weekend is the parade starting at noon Saturday on Pioneer Avenue. Members of the U.S. Coast Guard will be the Grand Marshals of the parade.

Sadly, while Homer honors 50 years of the Coast Guard, it also mourns the recent death of Chief Warrant Officer Michael Kozloski, killed in an industrial accident at the buoy yard of his ship, the U.S. Coast Guard Cutter Hickory. The U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary and the Greater Alaska Chief Petty Officers Association hold a barbecue fundraiser for the Kozloski family after the parade at the Homer Volunteer Fire Department.

A longtime carnival staple, the Winter Carnival Basketball Tournament starts at 3 p.m. Thursday and Friday and 2 p.m. Saturday at Homer High School, with girls and boys teams from Sitka, Galena and Seward competing with Homer.

Also back is the annual Mr. Homer Pageant at 9 p.m. Thursday at the Down East Saloon. The event is open to anyone who wants to have fun.

For a full list of winter carnival events, visit https://www.homeralaska.org/winter-carnival-parade.html. Selected events include:

Thursday

Winter Carnival Basketbal Tournament, Homer High School

3 p.m. Girls Seward vs. Sitka

4:30 p.m., Boys Seward vs. Sitka

6:30 p.m., Girls Galena vs. Homer

8 p.m. Boys Galena vs. Homer

9 p.m., Mr. Homer Pageant, Down East Saloon

Friday

1-4 p.m., Kachemak Bay Environmental Educators Alliance: snowshoeing and winter fun, Wynn Nature Center

8 p.m., Ducks Unlimited fundraiser, Down East Saloon.

Winter Carnival Basketball Tournament, Homer High School

3 p.m., Girils Sitka vs. Galena

4:30 p.m., Boys Sitka vs. Galena

6:30 p.m., Girls Seward vs. Homer

8 p.m., Boys Seward vs. Homer

4-7 p.m., Ice Skating Party, Ben Walters Park, Beluga Lake

Saturday

9 a.m. to noon, Pancake Breakfast, Homer United Methodist Curch

11 a.m., Giddy Up Your Step, Skeletal Connections, 1231 Ocean Drive

Noon, Winter Carnival Parade

1 p.m. (after parade) Coast Guard barbecue fundraiser, Homer Volunteer Fire Department

Winter Carnival Basketball Tournament, Homer High School

2 p.m., Girls Galena vs. Seward

3:30 p.m., Boys Galena vs. Seward

5 p.m., Girls Sitka vs. Homer

6:30 p.m., Boys Sitka vs. Homer

3 p.m., Favorite Playground Games for All Ages, SPARC.

5 p.m. Girl Scout Trooper 1935 Indian Dinner, United Methodist Church. Fundraise to support Girl Scout trip to India. $15 adults, $10 children 10 and younger

6 p.m., Homer Rotary Club Cranium Cup Challenge, Alice’s Champagne Palace

10 p.m., I Heart the ’90s, Alibi Bar & Cafe with Fractal Theory

Sunday

2-4 p.m., WYNNter Sunday Funday, Wynn Nature Center.

4-5:45 p.m. Free skate sponsored by NOMAR, Kevin Bell Arena

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