SUPPLY CHAIN WOES – James Pelletier, Yellow Jersey bicycle mechanic, is surrounded by cycles waiting to be repaired as he points to empty display racks at the Harbor Drive store. The main showroom rack, which can hold two dozen new bicycles, now holds only three bicycles (including an unclaimed special-order $5,000 electric mountain bike) for sale. A nationwide supply chain disruption of bicycles and parts is not expected to be alleviated any time soon. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

July 31, 2020, Community Happenings

Service Set For

Shirley Bayne

A celebration of the life of Shirley Bayne will be held at noon Aug. 8 at Halibut Point Recreation Area. Those attending are welcome to take a dish.


Shirley died July 4 of cancer at Mt. Edgecumbe Medical Center at age 68. She and her husband, Larry, have lived in Sitka since 1978.


40 Day Party for

William Howard

A 40 day party for William Eli ‘‘Buddy’’ Howard, 78, will be 5 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2, at the Sitka Moose Lodge, downstairs.


Mr. Howard died June 4.


Climate Connection: “The Future We Choose: Solving the Climate Crisis”

By Christiana Figueres and Tom Rivett-Carnac

The climate conference in Copenhagen in 2009 was a complete failure in many ways, with little evidence that the nations of the world could come to any effective agreement on addressing climate change.

In 2010, Christian Figueres, a Costa Rican diplomat, was appointed executive secretary of the United Nations framework convention on climate change, the organization responsible for guiding the response of the nations to the climate crisis, and she refused to accept that global agreement wasn’t possible. She hired Tom Rivett-Carnac, then president and CEO of Carbon Disclosure, USA and a former Buddhist monk, to be her senior political strategist.  His qualifications? “…humility to foster collective wisdom and the courage to work within a complexity that is beyond any mapping.”

Harnessing their impressive capabilities with sheer determination and unshakeable belief in a successful outcome, they led the negotiations that resulted in the 2015 Paris Agreement, the most far-reaching climate agreement to date.

Now, they have collaborated on a book: “The Future We Choose, Solving the Climate Crisis.” They describe the dire and critical state of the global crisis confronting us, and paint a picture, based on current predictions, of what the world will be like if we don’t take action. After describing the future we can look forward to if we do take appropriate action, the authors conclude: “Who we understand ourselves to be determines the choice we will make. That choice determines what will become of us. The choice is both simple and complex, but above all it’s urgent.”

The decade we are now entering is the most critical and our goal is clear: cut GHG emissions in half by 2030, then in half again by 2040 and achieve net zero by 2050. The authors present 3 mindsets they believe essential to the work that needs to be done to achieve that goal. 1. Stubborn Optimism — the unwavering belief that we will prevail; 2. Endless Abundance — nurturing the belief that there’s enough to go around and eliminating the competitiveness most of us feel in meeting our needs in life. Collaboration is offered as “the necessary engine for regenerating the biosphere and creating abundance”; 3. Radical Regeneration — beginning with replenishing and regenerating our own inner resources, and then focusing our efforts outward to support and create active regeneration of the natural world. This will require redesigning our human presence here, specifically by eliminating the “extractive” nature of our current human behavior.

We’re also presented with 10 actions, or areas to focus on, that we can all adopt to regenerate our lives and our planet. They are: 1. Let go of the old world  2. Face your grief, but hold a vision of the future  3. Defend the truth. 4. See yourself as a citizen – not a consumer  5. Move beyond fossil fuels  6. Reforest the Earth  7. Invest in a clean economy  8. Use technology responsibly  9. Build gender equality  10. Engage in politics

“The Future We Choose” is clear, concise and inspiring. It presents our stark current reality, but also emphasizes the significant amount of progress we’re making, and offers an encouraging and motivating roadmap for our future. In speaking of how we are to overcome the challenges and achieve the goal of a thriving livable planet, the authors assure us that “This is not a distant dream. It is already happening. Together with renowned author Arundhati Roy, we can say, “Another world is not only possible, she is on her way. Maybe many of us won’t be here to greet her, but on a quiet day, if I listen very carefully, I can hear her breathing.”


For more information about the book, the authors and links to their weekly podcasts, visit Barb Bingham is a stubborn (lifelong) optimist, and a member of Sitka Citizens’ Climate Lobby



Sport King Salmon

Allocation Raised

The Department of Fish and Game announces an increased opportunity to harvest king salmon.

Effective through Sept. 30, the resident bag and possession limit is three king salmon, 28 inches or greater in length, with no annual limit.

Nonresidents are allowed three king salmon, 28 inches or longer, and the annual limit is nine.

The department said due to continued reduced nonresident harvest in the sport fishery related to COVID-19 travel restrictions, the sport harvest of king salmon will continue to be significantly below the Southeast Alaska sport fishery king salmon allocation unless harvest opportunity is increased.

The action further liberalizes king salmon daily bag limits and the nonresident annual limit while keeping the marine sport fishery within its allocation.


For information, visit:


National Park

Lists Rules for

Trail Users

Sitka National Historical Park trails remain open during the COVID pandemic and visitors are being encouraged to walk the trails.

‘‘While enjoying the park trails, we ask that you be mindful of the park rules put in place to preserve and protect the park and park users,’’ the park said.

The following reminders are from the Sitka National Historical Park:

–Keep pets on a leash, clean up all pet waste: Leashes must be six feet long or shorter, and not retractable. Pet waste bags and trash bins are provided at path entrance/exit points.

–Walk bikes on the trail: Bikes must be walked not ridden. We have had several reported and witnessed incidents of unsafe behavior concerning people on bikes. Elderly walkers, and walkers with strollers or pets are potentially at a higher risk of having an accidental collision with someone on a swift bike.

–Foot traffic only: No motorized vehicles, or e-bikes/bicycles may be ridden. Motorized wheelchairs are the only exception to this rule.

–No camping: Camping is prohibited within the park.

–No open alcoholic beverages, no drug use: Although marijuana is legal in the State of Alaska, it is illegal to possess or use marijuana or other controlled substances in the park.

‘‘If you see someone violating one of these rules, please report the violation to law enforcement rangers (907) 747-0127, or in the case of an emergency call 911,’’ the park said. ‘‘Thank you, Sitka community, for helping us keep the park safe and clean for everyone to enjoy.’’

For additional information visit the park’s webpage at or call the visitor center at 747- 0110.


Sitka Resident

Earns Degree

Jenna Peterson of Sitka has earned a bachelor of science, nursing degree from Western Governors University. The online, nonprofit university has graduated more than 190,000 students from across the country since its inception in 1997. 

WGU has recognized 7,734 undergraduate and 5,254 graduate degree recipients who have completed their degrees since April 1. 


Marine Safety


Get Training

The Alaska Marine Safety Education Association is conducting a marine safety instructor training class in Sitka at the Public Safety Training Academy Sept. 21-26.

The intensive train-the-trainer course prepares individuals to effectively teach cold-water survival procedures, the use of marine safety equipment, and vessel safety drills.

Topics covered include: Methods of Marine Safety Instruction; Emergency Procedures; Risk Assessment; How to Conduct Effective Drills; Cold-Water Survival Skills; Man-Overboard Recovery; Firefighting; Life Rafts; Abandon-Ship Procedures; Helicopter-Rescue; Flares, MAYDAYs, and Other Emergency Signals; Personal Flotation Devices; Flooding Control; Conducting Safety Orientations; and Cross-Cultural Communication.

AMSEA recommends the workshop for anyone who wants to provide cold-water survival, shore-side survival, or marine safety instruction. The MSIT provides practical, hands-on experience in survival equipment use and procedures.

Upon completion, participants will be prepared to teach AMSEA’s U.S. Coast Guard-approved Fishing Vessel Drill Conductor training, pending authorization from the Coast Guard. Students must comply with classroom safety procedures for preventing the transmission of COVID-19 infections, including wearing face masks and maintaining six feet of physical distance from others.


The cost for the class is $995. Partial scholarships are available for qualifying commercial fishermen, with support from the National Institute for Occupational Safety & Health and the U.S. Coast Guard. Mariners can register online at or call 747-3287.


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 or call 747-0110. 


Volunteers Sought

For Trail Event

Volunteers are needed to pull alders along Sawmill Creek Road at the Sitka Trail Works’ trail maintenance event 1:30 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 2.

With water and gloves in hand, individuals will meet at the gravel parking lot about a quarter mile after Whale Park on the left side of the road.

Tools and a limited number of gloves will be provided. A mandatory COVID-19 pre-screening questionnaire and a liability waiver must be completed prior to participation, the organization said.

Social distancing between different household groups and face coverings are being encouraged. Teens wanting to help must attend with an adult. For information call 747-7244 or visit 



Walking Group

To Start Aug. 5 

All are invited to join SEARHC staff for weekly fitness walks starting Aug. 5.

Participants will meet at lower Moller Field at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesdays in August. 

Everyone is asked to take a clean face covering and follow public health guidelines about social distancing.  Walkers will go around the track as many times as they like to increase their step counts for  the Start Stepping Southeast 29-day walking challenge that runs Aug. 3-31.


For information contact Doug Osborne at 966-8674/ or go to


Car-A-Van Event

Slated Saturday

A Car-A-Van for those with older cars, 1970s and older, will gather at the Sea Mart parking lot 4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 1, to take a group ride out to Starrigavan and back through town and end at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

All are invited to join. For information call Jeff, 747 4821.




‘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   For more information contact Heleena VanVeen at or 966-8914.


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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 9-21-20)

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 10:45 a.m. Tuesday.

New cases as of Monday: 46

Total statewide – 6,950

Total (cumulative) deaths – 45

Active cases in Sitka – 17 (7 resident; 10 non-resident) *

Recovered cases in Sitka – 41 (37 resident; 4 non-resident) *

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 266.

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. 




September 2000

Enrollment is down by more than 100 students from last year, a decline four times greater than anticipated in the budget, Sitka School District Superintendent John Holst said today. The budget was based on an enrollment down by only 25 students.

September 1970

The borough assembly approved unanimously an ordinance authorizing expenditure of $12,000 for a redevelopment plan for the Sitka Indian Village. ... Judy Christianson, a member of the Sitka Community Action Group board of directors, has suggested that the planning be handled by a private social service organization called Habitats West.