EXPECT DELAYS – Lines of traffic move slowly down Sawmill Creek Road today as a repaving project progresses near the Indian River bridge. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

July 29, 2020, Community Happenings

SAFV Board Meets

The board of Sitkans Against Family Violence will meet online 4:30 p.m. Aug. 3. The meeting is open to the public. Email director@safv.org for the zoom link to join the meeting.  


‘Start Stepping’

Walk Event Set 

SEARHC is sponsoring a free walking event for Southeast residents. The Start Stepping Southeast 29-day walking challenge runs Aug. 3-31.

Participants who turn in a weekly steps log, by 3 p.m. every Monday, will be entered into a raffle for a $50 gift certificate to a local business.

The fitness program is open to all ages and walkers will be challenged to reach step count goals while following public health guidelines about social distancing and safety.

To register and log steps, go to searhc.org/startstepping.   For more information contact Heleena VanVeen at helennav@searhc.org or 966-8914.


Carver Joseph

At National Park

Tlingit carver Tommy Joseph has returned to Sitka National Historical Park to carve a new reproduction of the “Waasgo Pole.”

The first reproduction of the pole is displayed inside Totem Hall and can be seen during weekly open hours, noon-4 p.m. Friday through Sunday.

Joseph will work in the totem carving shed behind the visitor center, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Wednesday through Sunday.

‘‘He welcomes questions and discussion,’’ the park said.

NPS reminds visitors to maintain a six-foot physical distance from Joseph to prevent potential spread of COVID-19. His work area is roped off, and the park requests that visitors remain outside of the barrier.

The park will be documenting the progress of the pole and uploading to the park website and social media (the park can be found on Facebook and Instagram). More information about Joseph’s work and the pole being carved will be given throughout the summer.


For additional information visit the park’s webpage at www.nps.gov/sitk or call 747-0110. 

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August 5, 2020

A Note To Our Readers

Reopening: Phase One:


On March 30 the Daily Sitka Sentinel began taking precautions against the coronavirus, which was starting to show up in Alaska.

We closed our building to the public and four key employees started working remotely. Home delivery was suspended to protect our carriers from exposure to the virus.

Four months later, the virus is still with us and the precautions remain in effect.

In appreciation for the willingness of our subscribers to pick up their daily paper at drop-off sites, the Sentinel was free to all readers, and subscriptions were extended without charge.

As of August 1 the Sentinel is once again charging for subscriptions, but the present method of having subscribers pick up their papers at designated sites will continue.

The expiration date of all subscriptions has been extended without charge for an additional four months.

We thank our readers for their support in these uncertain times, and especially those who paid for the paper despite the free offer.

We look forward to the time when we can safely resume home delivery.

To check on the expiration of your subscription or to make a payment please call 747-3219. The subscription email address is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. . We also will be mailing out reminder cards.

The single copy price is again 75 cents. The news racks do not require coins to open, but we ask that the 75 cents for a non-subscription single copy sale be paid with coins in the slot.

– The Sitka Sentinel Staff


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Alaska COVID-19
At a Glance

(updated 8-7-20)

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 11:20 a.m. Friday.

New cases as of Thursday: 53

Total statewide – 3,536

Total (cumulative) deaths – 25

Active cases in Sitka – 20 (14 resident; 6 non-resident) *

Recovered cases in Sitka – 15 (11 resident; 4 non-resident) *

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 141.

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. 




August 2000

High prices for chum salmon, low pink returns, and record numbers of fish in Deep Inlet have turned the Sitka fishing grounds into Route 66 this summer. “Overall it’s been a fantastic season so far,” said Steve Reifenstuhl, operations manager for the Northern Southeast Regional Aquaculture Association.

August 1970

His Beatitude, Metropolitan Ireney, Primate of the Orthodox Church in America, will head a gathering of Orthodox prelates from North American and abroad in ceremonies canonizing the first American Orthodox saints, Father Herman of Alaska. A group of Sitkans will fly to Kodiak for the event.