GRAB AND GO - Library patron Tina Johnson, left, and Joanna Perensovich, information services librarian, wear masks in the Sitka Library this afternoon. The library no longer has couches for patrons, but does have computer desks widely spaced apart for people to access for one-hour periods. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

June 26, 2020, Community Happenings

Public Library

Set to Reopen

Sitka Public Library will reopen to the public on July 1. New operating hours will be 11 a.m.-6 p.m. Wednesday through Saturday.

The building will be closed Sunday through Tuesday to allow for cleaning, but walk-up window service will be available. 

‘‘You can help keep the library open by wearing a face covering, maintaining a 6-foot distance from staff and other patrons, and keeping your visit short,’’ the library said in a press release.

For information about library services check online or call 747-4020. 


Ham Radio

Field Day Set

Sitka Ham Amateur Radio Klub will participate in this year’s Field Day event 11 a.m. June 27 through 11 a.m. June 28 at the Mt. Edgecumbe High School parking lots. 

Field day is amateur radio’s open house where for 24 hours hams publicly showcase the science, skill and service that radio can bring to a community. Amateur radio operators across North America, the world and even outer space will be busy with this year’s ARRL Field Day event. 

‘‘Ham radio is fun and it’s for everyone, including you,’’ event organizers said.


All are invited to attend the  SHARKs Field Day event. For more information call Darryl at 738-4539.


Community Center

Work Group Meets

The Sitka Community Center working group will hold a Zoom meeting 6:30 p.m. June 29 to discuss the proposed center intended to provide food, shelter and services to those affected by the pandemic.


All are welcome to attend and should email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for a link to the meeting. 



Hours Given

The Mt. Edgecumbe High School pool is open with limited access and is following social distancing guidelines.

Patrons will be screened at the door with a questionnaire and their temperature taken.

Other rules will apply, including: no more than 30 patrons in facility at a time; no locker room access; staying 6 feet apart on deck and in the water (families are exempt); and no goggles, caps, towels or floaties loaned.

Monday through Friday pool hours are: 6-7 a.m. lap; 1-2 p.m. lap and parent/tot; and 5-6 p.m. lap and therapy.


More information also can be found on the MEHS website under athletics and activities.



Are Available

For Sitkans

Applications for the CARES Act Funding Utility and Moorage Relief Programs are available in Sitka through the city website,

Paper copies of the applications are available at city hall or the harbor office. Applications received after the deadline, 4 p.m. Friday, July 31, will be considered late and will not be accepted.

The city is encouraging submission of applications through the website; however, applicants may submit by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or to the utility office. Utility subsidy questions can be directed to the accounting clerk at 747-1859; moorage subsidy questions to the harbor office at 747-3439.


‘Science Bites’

To Spark Ideas

Sitka Sound Science Center is offering a library of “Science Bites” on its webite.

“Bites” are updated with new offerings each week.

‘‘Science Bites are science activities based on events at the science center – in the aquarium and hatchery or with current citizen science and research projects,’’ the science center said. ‘‘Families can use the bites as quick glimpses into new ideas or as a basis for extended projects.’’ 


They can be found at


White Receives

Pharmacy Degree

Oregon College of Pharmacy at Oregon State University, Corvallis, Oregon, conferred 78 doctor of pharmacy degrees on June 7 in a virtual graduation ceremony.

Four of the graduates – including Soren White of Sitka – also received their master of business administration from the OSU College of Business.

White, Sitka high class of 2012, said he is spending the next year in Michigan ‘‘working on some different pharmacy challenges in the current climate.’’


He is the son of Trish and Dirk White of Sitka. 


Riggs Earns

Master’s Degree

Sidney Riggs has earned a master of business administration degree from Whitworth University, Spokane, Washington.

Whitworth is a private, liberal arts university affiliated with the Presbyterian Church.

The Sitka High School graduate is the daughter of Rich and Nicole Riggs.


Bekeris Earns

Bachelor’s Degree

Misha Bekeris of Sitka graduated magna cum laude from the University of Utah, Salt Lake City, on April 30.

Bekeris, whose major is chemical engineering, was among the 8,628 graduates who were honored during the university’s first-ever virtual commencement due to the coronavirus pandemic.

He is a 2016 Sitka High School graduate and the son of Mikolas Bekeris and Karoline Vargas.



On Dean’s List

Jessica Davis, a sophomore exploratory studies major, and Joanna Davis, a senior English with a teaching license major, were named to the Harding University, Searcy, Arkansas, dean’s list for spring term.




On Dean’s List

Hannah Kimber of Sitka has been named to the Missouri State University, Springfield, Missouri, dean’s list for spring semester.


The Mt. Edgecumbe High School graduate is the daughter of Mike and Charlotte Kimber of Sitka.

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Alaska COVID-19
At a Glance

(updated 7-10-20)

By Sentinel Staff

The state Department of Health and Social Services has posted the following update on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Alaska as of noon Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 51

Total statewide – 1,323

Total (cumulative) deaths – 17

Active cases in Sitka – 5 (2 resident; 3 non-resident) *

Recovered cases in Sitka – 13 (11 resident; 2 non-resident) *

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 80.

To visit the Alaska DHSS Corona Response dashboard website click here.

* These numbers reflect State of Alaska data. Local cases may not immediately appear on DHSS site, or are reported on patient’s town of residence rather than Sitka’s statistics. 




Welcome to the Sitka Sentinel's web page. In order to make the Sentinel's news more easily available during the COVID-19 pandemic, we have taken down the paywall to access articles on this page. Just click on an article headline to read the story. 

March 23, 2020



For the duration of the COVID-19 disaster emergency declared by federal, state and local authorities, the Sentinel is taking additional measures to reduce virus exposure to its employees and contractors as well as to the public, while continuing to publish a daily news report for Sitka.

To the extent possible, Sentinel news and sales staff will be working from home. For the protection of our carriers, home delivery of the newspaper will be stopped effective Tuesday, March 24.

The Sentinel will continue to publish on its website Access to the website will be free to all users. The Sentinel will also produce a print edition Monday through Friday. It will be available to all readers without charge, at locations throughout town.

Initially, these locations are those where the Sentinel's newspaper vending machines are already in place. The coin mechanisms will be disabled or the doors removed to permit easy access. The Sentinel will work with the stores where the paper is usually sold, to designate a place inside or outside the store where the free edition can be made available.  

Home delivery subscriptions are on hold, and after the end of the disaster emergency, subscriptions will be extended at no charge for the number of days that there was no home delivery.

The Sentinel will make its print edition available to the public as early in the day as possible. with all personnel taking precautions to prevent spread of the virus.

The Sentinel is calling upon its customers to observe the COVID-19 emergency precautions already in place, particularly in maintaining a six-foot social distance from others at newspaper distribution sites.

Following is the statement issued by the Sentinel on March 16, stating the Sentinel's emergency procedures, which remain in effect.

The Sentinel office at 112 Barracks Street is closed to the public. We encourage people to use the phone, email or the U.S. Postal Service as much as possible.There is a slot in the front door of the office for ads, news items and payment checks. Emails may be sent to  This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and the phone number is (907) 747-3219.                                                                          

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