OPENING SPLASH – Chaix Mooney shoots out of the water slide at the Mt. Edgecumbe Aquatic Facility Wednesday night. The pool was officially opened to the public Wednesday with an open swim. Scheduled public openings are lap swims on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 8 a.m.; and open swims 5-8 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays. The pool has an eight-yard lap pool attached to a walk-in therapy area and diving well. Other features include a climbing wall, dual diving boards and a water slide. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

February 26, 2014 Community Happenings

    A letter to the editor from Albert Judson published in Monday’s Sentinel contained a typographical error.
    The sentence should have read: ‘‘Now we have HB255 on unmanned aircraft systems otherwise known as ‘drones’ and in this case this is for police drones.’’

    Beginner Spin
    Classes on Tap
    The basics of spin and the craze behind it will be taught at the Hames Center 5:30 p.m. Wednesdays and 8 a.m. Saturdays, March 5-29.
    For more information or to sign up to save a spot go to or call 747-5080.

    First Aid, CPR
    Training at UAS
    UAS-Sitka Campus, Office of Continuing Education, will offering an American Heart Association first aid and CPR training 8 a.m.-5 p.m. March 1.
    Training fulfills OSHA and Coast Guard requirements. Participants who successfully complete this course will receive Heartsaver cards.
    The cost is $90 and it includes a book. For more information, or to register, call 747-7762.
    Beginner TRX
    Classes at Hames
    The basics of the TRX suspension resistance training is being offered at Hames Center.
    Sign up to save a spot in the March 3-26 classes to be held 11:30 a.m. Mondays and Wednesdays.
    For more information go to or call 747-5080.

    After School Arts
    At Fine Arts Camp
    After School Arts, presented by the Sitka Fine Arts Camp, is offering new classes starting in April.
    Students can build paper mache animal masks, explore animation, book illustration, painting, photography and celtic dance.
    A list of classes is available on line at Sign up by calling the Fine Arts Camp at 747-3085, or stop by the office in the Rasmuson building on the SJ Campus.

    Fine Arts Camp
    Adult Classes On
    The Sitka Fine Arts Camp is offering workshops and classes for adults starting April. They will include basic and advanced digital photography, painting and illustration and senior ballet. A list of classes is available on line at To sign up call 747-3085 or stop by the office in the Rasmuson Building on the SJ campus.

Offer Health Care
Registration Help
The federal deadline for individuals to enroll in health insurance, file an exemption, or pay a tax penalty is March 31.
‘‘That means there’s barely a month left to sign up for affordable healthcare based on income, age and family size,’’ a press release from UAS-Sitka Campus said. ‘‘This is especially important for people who are not currently insured . . . but it could also be important for the many people who have current health policies that will run out at the end of the year.’’
To help people understand the Affordable Care Act – how to enroll and what the cost saving benefits are – UAS Sitka Campus and SEARHC are teaming up to host several events.
On Thursday, Feb. 27, from 6:30 to 7:30 p.m., will be a free information meeting at UAS in Room 229. UAS is a bus stop on the Green Line RIDE.
A free enrollment session will be held 1:30-3:30 p.m. Saturday, March 1,  in the Student Learning Center. UAS will give access to computers so people can get assistance getting on Interested people should take their Social Security number, date of birth and income information (needed for all members in a family). Trained enrollment counselors will be available to assist community members.
For more information, contact Owen Kindig at UAS: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    Hunter Education
    Class to be Offered
    The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is offering a basic hunter education class 6-9 p.m. April 18 through 9 a.m.-4 p.m. April 19 at the Sitka Sportsman’s Association building. Both days must be attended to complete the class.
    To register, purchase a $10 study packet with workbook available at the Sitka Fish and Game office. The workbook must be completed prior to the start of class. The course is designed for students ages 11 and older.
    For materials and information contact the Sitka Fish and Game office at 747-5449.

Wearable Arts Runway Show & Extravaganza: SHS Costumes and Textiles

By Emma Bruhl
For the Sentinel
    Sitka High students will strut their stuff once again this year at the Wearable Art Show and Runway Extravaganza.
    Since the first show in 2009 the Sitka Wearable Art Show and Runway Extravaganza has always featured a SHS student from Gaylen Needham’s costumes and textiles class.   
    Needham started the class back in 2005 and is teaching her final semester at SHS this spring after 12 years of heading the art department.
    “The reason I (started the class) is that I love costuming. The idea of sewing, and using different mediums to make a costume was really exciting to me,” Needham said.
    At the time wearable arts had not yet come to Sitka. Needham and her students put on their own show in the fall so costumes were often “geared towards Halloween,” she said.
    When the Greater Sitka Arts Council started its own Wearable Art Show as part of the annual spring ArtiGras festival, students began to take it up a notch, sewing some more striking concepts into their outfits.
    “I find that there’s more statement costumes,” Needham said. “Like one year I had a girl cover a dress in condoms … it was such a huge statement. She called it ‘Get It On’ and used it to talk about HIV/AIDS awareness. It was awesome.”
    The idea of “wearable art” can be interpreted in many ways. In Sitka the art form is traditionally used to draw attention to issues such as global warming or recycling or is simply an expression of fun, color, and impeccable costuming. The runway often features items that are specific to Sitka, such as cedar shavings fashioned in the couture style, or a flapper dress made of hoochies.
    For Needham the show has presented an opportunity for young artists to find an entirely new way of expressing themselves. Students are exposed to a distinct medium that allows them to present their ideas effectively.
    “Textiles are a whole different thing, you know,” she said. “You’re working with fabrics… which is a canvas in itself that comes pre-painted.”
    When asked why she thinks art is so powerful in conveying an idea, Needham responded, “I think good art is always something that attracts your attention. Sometimes it’s as subtle as color, but sometimes it’s shocking, like with the condom dress.”
    That dress in particular was designed by one student and modeled by another.
    Needham said that whether the student is the designer or the model or both, she is impressed by their courage to express themselves.
     “It’s really something when a high school kid can put themselves out there to walk down that runway,” she said. “I think it’s huge.”
    This year those students will be junior Sophia Peters, and exchange student Lorella Gil.
    “Sophia’s is going to be wild,” Needham said. “She’s not even talking to me about what she’s doing. I see it in class, but I’m not sure how all the pieces fit together yet.”
    Tickets for the Wearable Art Show and Runway Extravaganza are available at Old Harbor Books. Shows are at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. Saturday at Harrigan Centennial Hall.
    The entire SHS costume collection created by Needham’s class can be seen at their runway showcase 7 p.m. March 10 the SHS Commons.
    Emma Bruhl is a Sitka High School senior, serving as an intern for the Greater Sitka Arts Council. This is one in a series of profiles of local artists.

    T’ai Chi Chih
    Practice Listed
    T’ai Chi Chih Practice by the Sea will meet 10 a.m. March 1 behind Kettleson Library on the water side. All are invited to participate. This is not a class.

    Fry Bread Sale
    Set for March 1
    The Alaska Native Sisterhood Camp 4 and the Alaska Native Brotherhood Camp 1 will sell fry bread noon-4 p.m. Saturday, March 1, at the ANB Founders Hall.
    Those with questions may call Jean at 623-7355.

    Swing Dance
    Benefit on Tap
    Swing dance lessons will be taught by Al Maloney 8 p.m. March 5 at the Bayview Pub.
    All of the $5 donation per person benefits Sitkans Against Family Violence. No experience is required.

    Cookbook on Sale
    To Benefit Quilters
    Ocean Wave Quilters is selling its limited edition cookbook. It includes potluck-tested and approved recipes and photos of quilts, all by local quilters.
    For more information call Jan Lovett at 747-3653.

This Week in Girls on the Run

    Girls on the Run is an empowerment-based program for girls in third through fifth grades, currently in its sixth season at Keet Gooshi Heen Elementary School.
    GOTR is more than an after-school activity; it is a program designed to bring girls together with strength and resilience and prepare them for a lifetime of self-respect and healthy living. Through dynamic, interactive lessons and running games, GOTR prepares girls for a final celebratory 5K fun run while teaching life-skills and unleashing confidence.
    For the past two weeks, GOTR participants have been focusing on positive versus negative self-talk, and how to respect ourselves and others by choosing to be positive. Girls learn about a “positive cord” they can imagine plugging themselves into to help them make this choice.
    Here’s what participants have to say about the program:
    – ‘‘A positive cord is something in your mind that you can visualize that’s something good about you. It shares kindness and friendship to everybody.”
    – ‘‘It’s like a positive thing that you plug into your body to make yourself happy and comfortable.”
    – ‘‘The positive cord is like helping other friends when they feel left out.”
    Throughout this season, GOTR will keep providing the Sitka community with updates from the program. We also hope to give mentors and parents an opportunity to pass on skills from GOTR to the youths in your life. Here are some conversation starters for talking with kids about positive self-talk.
    *We all have positive thoughts sometimes and negative thoughts sometimes. How do you feel when there are negative thoughts in your head? How do you feel when there are positive thoughts in your head?
    *When you are around someone who has negative thoughts, how does that make you feel? When you are around someone who has positive thoughts (is plugged into the positive cord), how does that make you feel?
    *Is it our choice to plug into negative or positive thoughts? (Yes!)
    *What is negative self-talk? (When we say our negative thoughts out loud) Where do you think negative self-talk comes from? Have I ever said anything that you think is negative self-talk?
    *Is there a sound/signal we can use if we hear our family saying something negative about ourselves? We can use that sound/signal to remind ourselves that we can choose to be negative or positive in that moment!
    Girls on the Run is sponsored by Sitkans Against Family Violence.  Call 747-3370 for more information.

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