July 7, 2015 Community Happenings

Category: News
Created on Tuesday, 07 July 2015 11:56
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Free Workshops On Local

Food, Preservation Offered

The SEARHC WISEFAMILIES Traditional Foods program and the UA-Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service are teaming up to offer a series of four free food preservation and entrepreneurship workshops July 16-18, at the Sitka Kitch.

Free pressure canner gauge testing will be at the Sitka Farmers Market 10 a.m.-1 p.m. July 18 at the ANB Founders Hall.

The Sitka Kitch is a rental community commercial kitchen project coordinated by the Sitka Conservation Society, in partnership with the Sitka Local Foods Network, located at the First Presbyterian Church, 505 Sawmill Creek Road.

The Sitka Kitch was a project from the 2013 Sitka Health Summit designed to improve food security while also providing a space for people wanting to get into the cottage food business or wanting to preserve their harvest for storage in the home pantry. Gauges should be tested once a year.

Sitka Kitch officially opened in March 2015 after renovations to make it pass Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation commercial kitchen food safety standards.

UAF Southeast Extension Agent Sarah Lewis of the Juneau District Office will teach four classes – ‘‘Cottage Foods and Beyond,’’ ‘‘Pickling and Fermenting,’’ ‘‘Canning Salmon and Berries’’ and ‘‘Canning Soups and Sauces.’’ Classes are open to Sitka residents of all ages, but an adult must accompany those younger than 14. Class sizes are limited to 16 people. 

Through a grant from WISEFAMILIES,  all ingredients, jars and equipment will be supplied in class.

“The WISEFAMILIES Traditional Foods program is partnering with the UAF Cooperative Extension Service because their work complements our purposes, which is to help Native families reduce their risk for disease while working toward getting back to a traditional way of eating,” said SEARHC health educator Clara Gray.

The SEARHC program promotes healthy lifestyles by connecting Alaska Natives in Southeast Alaska to their culture. Members of the program learn how to harvest, cook, and preserve their traditional Alaska native foods. In addition, participants learn traditional language, dancing, carving, weaving, and other skills that help reconnect them to their culture.

The Extension Service offers a variety of programs geared toward food, how to grow it, how to preserve it for storage, and how to make it into cottage foods to sell. For those who can’t make the classes, the service offers a series of free online tutorials about home canning called Preserving Alaska’s Bounty.

“As a UAF Cooperative Extension Agent, I try to teach that family and community resilience are strengthened when local foods are used to cook meals at home,” Lewis said. “Through my food preservation and entrepreneurship workshops I offer the knowledge and skills needed for people to discover the nutritional benefits and financial stability that come from making and preserving homemade meals with local ingredients.”

Classes to be taught are:

‘‘Cottage Foods and Beyond,’’ 2-4 p.m., Thursday, July 16 – Learn to safely make and legally sell local foods. This class explains the DEC Cottage Foods Exemptions, as well as steps to take when ready to go “beyond cottage foods.”

‘‘Pickling and Fermenting,’’ 6:30-9:30 p.m., Thursday, July 16 – SLearn to make sauerkraut, kim-chi, vinegars, pickled vegetables and non-alcoholic beverages. Learn the basics of lacto-fermentation and vinegar pickling for home-made snacks and digestive health.

‘‘Canning Salmon and Berries,’’ 4-9 p.m., Friday, July 17 – The waterbath and pressure canning class is for people of all experience levels, with a focus on these two favorite Southeast foods.

‘‘Canning Soups and Sauces,’’ 3-8 p.m., Saturday, July 18 – Learn how to easily and safely pressure and waterbath can ready-to-eat meals and side dishes.

Due to limited class space, individuals should pre-register by Wednesday, July 15. Contact Jasmine Shaw of the Sitka District Office of the UAF Cooperative Extension Service at 747-9440 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. to register.



‘Beauty and the Beast’

To be Staged by SFAC

The Sitka Fine Arts Camp will present Disney’s ‘‘Beauty and the Beast’’ July 24-25 at the Performing Arts Center.

The young men and women of the musical theater camp will perform the classic tale in three showings: 7 p.m. Friday, July 24; and 2:30 p.m. and 7 p.m. Saturday, July 25.

Tickets are available at Old Harbor Books for $20 for adults and $15 for students and seniors. Children 5 and under get in for free. For more information call 747-3085.


SCH Foundation

Meeting on Tap

The Sitka Community Hospital Foundation will hold its quarterly meeting noon Monday, July 13, in the hospital classroom. 

Lunch will be provided. Topics on the agenda include fundraising efforts and new granting possibility. The public is invited to join and learn more about the SCH Foundation. 

Call Ann Wilkinson at 747-2707 with questions.


‘Detour’ Screened

At Public Library

Kettleson Memorial Library’s Film Noir Club will screen the 1945 cult classic noir “Detour” 7 p.m. Saturday, July 11, at the library.

Club members can register in person at the library, or by calling 747-8708. Registration is required. Refreshments will be provided.


Harp Sing Set

The Second Sunday Sitka Sacred Harp Sing is set 3:30-5 p.m. June 14 at the Sitka Pioneers Home Chapel.  Beginners and listeners are always welcome. Call 738-2089 with questions.


City Property

Taxes are Due

Real and personal property tax bills have been mailed and are now due, the city finance department reminds taxpayers.

Those taxes not paid (or postmarked) by 4:45 p.m. Aug. 31, 2015, will become delinquent, with progressive penalty and set interest applied, the city said.

The mailing address is 100 Lincoln St., Sitka, AK 99835.

Credit cards are accepted for property tax payments. Credit card payments received via phone will be processed between 8 a.m. and 9 a.m. only by calling 747-1818.

Taxpayers with questions may contact the billing office at 747-1840.


Emblem Club Meets

The Sitka Emblem Club will hold a business meeting 7 p.m. Thursday, July 9,  at the Sitka Elks Lodge.

Officers are required to attend, and members are welcome.