EMERGENCY RESPONSE – Members of the Alaska Native Brotherhood and Alaska Native Sisterhood this week organized a city-wide food drive for residents of Angoon and other villages affected by the lack of Alaska Marine Highway System ferry service. Hundreds of pounds of food were collected at Sitka High School and other drop off sites. Thursday night about three dozen people attended a meeting at ANB Founders Hall to discuss the ferry situation and prepare food for shipping. Laurie Serka, outstation manager for Alaska Seaplanes, said Alaska Seaplanes, Sitka Custom Marine and Dr. Sul Ross Thorward donated shipping costs for the perishable food donated by AC Lakeside. Tom Gamble is planning to take a load of food to Angoon aboard his boat. Donations for shipping food to Kake are currently being sought. Contact for the donations is Nancy Furlow, ANS Camp 4 president, 907 227-9102. PHOTOS: clockwise from top left, Laurie Serka, Steve Schmidt and Marjo Vidad of Alaska Seaplanes load food bound for Angoon this morning. Tom Gamble and Chad Titell  deliver boxes of food from Sitka High School to ANB Founders Hall Thursday night. Paulette Moreno, ANS Grand Camp president, addresses volunteers Thursday night. Sitkans gather in a circle at ANB Founders Hall Thursday to brainstorm responses to the lack of state ferry service. (Sentinel Photos by James Poulson)

October 14, 2015 Community Happenings

State Historical Society

To Explore Canneries

Recognizing the role of the seafood industry in Alaska’s history, the Alaska Historical Society announced the Alaska Historic Canneries Initiative to document, preserve, and celebrate the history of Alaska’s commercial fish processing plants. The announcement was made at the Society’s recent annual conference in the historic fishing community of Cordova.

“Hundreds of canneries and fish processing plants dotted Alaska’s coast, serving as economic engines and social hubs for communities around our state,” said Anjuli Grantham of Kodiak, chair of the initiative. “Today our commercial fishing industry continues to thrive, but changes in the industry mean that many of these historic places are at risk of disappearing before their stories are recorded. The seafood industry is critical to the livelihoods of many Alaskans and it is central to the state’s identity. It is important to document and preserve these places, and record the stories of the fishermen and processors who define coastal Alaska.’’

The initiative began as a grassroots effort among historians, with a panel focused on Alaska fisheries at last year’s AHS conference. In formalizing the initiative, the AHS’s goal is to establish an ongoing program of research into fisheries history, including a grant program to assist students and others research local salmon canneries, herring reduction plants, floating processors, cold storage facilities, cod salteries, and other commercial seafood processing plants.

“This initiative relies on the knowledge and passion of local individuals to be successful,” Grantham said. “It can be as simple as donating photos of Alaska canneries to a local historical society or organizing a storytelling event among fishermen and cannery workers. Ultimately, we hope to develop a preservation plan for a cannery. Regardless of the size of the project, all these fit within the initiative’s goal to document these places that matter to so many Alaskans.”

Alaska Lt. Gov. Byron Mallett recognized the importance of preserving this heritage. He was born and raised in Yakutat where he fished and worked in the local cannery. “Yakutat’s history with seafood is typical of an industry and resource that serves to define Alaska today,” Mallett said. “It is a history, a present and a future that must be preserved, understood and made available to our children so they understand the balance between the use of Alaska’s rich ocean resources and the care that must be taken to assure their continual existence.”

More information about the Alaska Historic Canneries Initiative is available at: http://alaskahistoricalsociety.org/about-ahs/alaska-historic-canneries-initiative/, which includes a link to the Initiative’s recently released Alaska Fisheries: A Guide to History Resources, an annotated bibliography compiled by Bob King of over 500 books, articles, and other publications on the history of Alaska’s fisheries.


Emergency Plan

To be Tested at

Blue Lake Dam

The annual Blue Lake Dam  Emergency Action Plan Notification test is scheduled 9 a.m. Tuesday, Oct. 20.

Those who work downstream of the  dam or are part of the local  Emergency Management Team will be contacted by telephone during the notification test, the City and Borough of Sitka said.

Outdoor public warning sirens, which are automatically triggered, will also be tested on Tuesday by broadcasting an “only a test” message at the Industrial Park.

In the unlikely event the  Blue Lake Dam failed from a long period of flood or a large earthquake, the estimated flood waters would reach the downstream industrial park in three minutes, the City said.

If inspection of the dam after an event indicates a developing safety problem, the Blue Lake operator starts a telephone notification list. The  Blue Lake hydroelectric operator can also manually trigger the outdoor warning sirens at the Industrial park and campground below the dam.  

Those with questions can contact the city offices.


Stardust Ball

Tickets on Sale

Raven Radio’s Stardust Ball is Saturday, Oct. 31. Raven Radio members at the mug level and above will get first crack at tickets at 9 a.m. on Thursday, Oct. 15, at the station.

Those who haven’t become a member yet, or need to upgrade their membership, can do so at kcaw.org.

Tickets for the general public will go on sale Friday, Oct. 16, at Old Harbor Books.


Pool League Meets

The Greater Sitka Pool League 9-Ball captains meeting is slated 7 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 15, at the American Legion Hall.

Team signups and rules of play will be discussed. The sponsorship fee is $100. Players fee is $15 plus a $5 weekly fee.


Food Network

Seeks Coordinator

For Sitka Garden

The Sitka Local Foods Network is looking to contract with a Sitka resident to coordinate a new downtown garden education program. 

The group received a 2015 community impact grant from the United Way of Southeast Alaska to develop the program, which it hopes to launch in 2016 at a space next to Baranof Elementary School.

The contract runs from November 2015 through fall 2016, and the coordinator will be in charge of developing curricula, teaching classes, obtaining supplies, and providing evaluation of the program. A full list of job duties and expectations can be found at the bottom of the article posted at the website, www.sitkalocalfoodsnetwork.org/.

Questions about the contract can be directed to Michelle Putz at 747-2708 or to Maybelle Filler at 738-1982, or send an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


Volunteers Sought

For Book Sale

Kettleson’s annual Alaska Day book sale is slated 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17.

Proceeds will got to the library expansion. Call Kari at 752-7373 to help set up on Friday, Oct. 16, 5-8 p.m. Help also will be needed during the day of the sale.


Electric Vehicle

Meeting Oct. 24

The Electric Vehicle group will meet 3 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 24, at Kettleson Library.

The group will talk about repairs and maintenance.



SCDC to Meet 

Sitka Community Development Corporation will meet 7-8:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 26, at the Sealing Cove Business Center, 601 Alice Loop Rd.

SCDC is a community supported nonprofit working to establish permanently affordable housing in Sitka. Members of the public are encouraged to attend. For more information call 747-2860.



Contest Set

All are invited to submit home-smoked salmon for the first-ever Alaska Longline Fishermen’s Association smoked salmon tasting competition.  Multiple categories and multiple prizes will be offered. 

The tasting and judging will take place during ALFA’s Alaska Day party 9-11:30 a.m. Sunday, Oct. 18. Tasting and judging will be at 10:15 a.m. at the Sitka Sound Science Center, 834 Lincoln Street.

Those wanting to enter can call 747-3400 or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .


Alaskan Dream Cruises hires new vice president of sales

Alaskan Dream Cruises has hired Alaska tourism veteran Michelle Glass as its new vice president of sales. Glass steps into the role this month.

Glass has 24 years of Alaska tourism industry experience, including several years spent as the executive director of the Haines Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Kenai Convention and Visitors Bureau. Most recently as the senior Alaska sales account manager at Entrée Alaska and the company’s top salesperson she marketed travel to Alaska both nationally and internationally. 

At Alaskan Dream Cruises, Glass is tasked with developing and executing strategy to boost business sales. 

“Michelle has extensive knowledge of the Alaska tourism industry from a selling and marketing standpoint,” Alaskan Dream Cruises CEO Russell Dick said. “We know she’ll help us continue to grow; and we look forward to welcoming her to the Alaskan Dream Cruises family.”

Michelle holds a bachelor of arts degree in geography and secondary education from Western Washington University. She was selected as an exclusive Condé Nast Traveler magazine destination specialist for Alaska and an exclusive Wendy Perrin Wow List destination specialist for Alaska.

“I’ve dedicated my entire professional life to the Alaskan tourism industry; and I honestly love what I do. Alaskan Dream Cruises is such a dynamic and truly Alaskan company; and I am elated to bring my skills and passion for the industry to this organization,” Glass said.

With its largest ship holding up to 74 passengers, Alaskan Dream Cruises offers a casual atmosphere and an insider’s view of Alaska’s Inside Passage. The company was launched in 2011 by the Allen family, members of the Tlingit Kaagwaantaan clan. The Allen family also founded Allen Marine Inc., a boat building company, in 1967; Allen Marine Tours, offers day cruise tours in Alaska’s Inside Passage. For more information, visit www.alaskandreamcruises.com.


Beans are Focus

Of Sitka Kitch

Class on Oct. 19

Sitka Kitch will offer a class focusing on the many benefits of using beans in meals 6:30 p.m. Monday, Oct. 19.

Beans are an inexpensive source of protein and loaded with fiber plus they are absolutely versatile. Participants will learn about how to purchase, store and prepare simple bean dishes.

The cost is $20 plus a food fee that will be determined based on the number who register for the class. The class is hosted by Lisa Sadleir-Hart, MPH, RDN. Sitka Kitch needs at least six for the class to go register at https://sitkakitch.eventsmart.com/events/cooking-from-scratch-beans-101/ or call 747-5985.


Mental Health

First Aid Taught

Sitka Counseling and Prevention Services, in partnership with St. Peter’s by-the-Sea Episcopal Church, is sponsoring two mental health first aid trainings.

The first training is set 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 27, at the See House and the second is 8 a.m.-5:30 p.m. Nov. 6, at Sitka Counseling and Prevention Services, 113 Metlakatla St., building 111.

The cost for the training is $35, the regular cost is $75. Individuals need attend only one of the trainings to become a certified mental health first aid responder. To register or find out more information, contact Sitka Counseling and Prevention Services at 747-3636. Instructors are Maybelle Filler and Loyd Platson.


Raffle Tickets

Now on Sale

The Friends of Kettleson Memorial Library is selling raffle tickets for a chance to win one of two quilts.

The drawing will be held Nov. 28. Tickets will be available at the Friends of the Library Book Sale 10 a.m.-6 p.m. Saturday, Oct. 17, at the library, 831 Lincoln Street. All proceeds will go toward supporting the library expansion project.

 For further information, contact Robb Farmer at 747-8708 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.




Pay Tribute to

Malcolm Miller

At the Alaska Native Brotherhood and Alaska Native Sisterhood Grand Camp Convention held in Wrangell this week, ANS Grand Camp officer Mary A. Brown paid tribute to Malcolm (Jay) J. Miller, by giving him a standing ovation.

During last year’s convention Miller was asked to design a bracelet for the Grand Camp Convention in memory of Ruby Smith, who is the mother of Mary A. Brown. Smith was born in Wrangell.

He did not complete the order due to his illness but his wife Mary Katasse-Miller donated a Frog bracelet to the Grand Camp Convention. Tickets generated approximately $1,115. The recipient of the Frog bracelet was Anastasia from Haines Camp 5.

On Oct. 9 breakfast was coordinated by Wrangell ANS Camp President Sandy Churchill. She asked the Wrangell HeadStart program to provide breakfast in Miller’s honor, and Petersburg ANS/ANB Camp made a financial donation for the occasion.


Substance Use

Group to Meet

Those concerned about the use and abuse of substances and their effect on the community are invited to attend a meeting 3-4:30 p.m. Oct. 22 at Sitka Counseling and Prevention Services.

Attendees will discuss the issue and develop a plan to apply for a Drug Free Communities Grant that will bring $125,000 per year into the community to work on youth substance use and abuse prevention.

For more information, contact Loyd Platson at 747-3636 ext. 226.


Office Hours Set

For Representative

State Rep. Jonathan Kreiss-Tomkins will hold public office hours in Sitka 9 a.m.-10 a.m. Wednesday, Oct. 21. He’ll be at the Backdoor 9-10 a.m. and the Highliner 11 a.m.-noon.

No appointments are necessary. Those with questions, or unable to make it to office hours, can email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call the representative’s Sitka office at 747-4665.



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