NEW BREW – Zach Anderson stands at the bar of the recently opened Harbor Mountain Brewing Company Tuesday afternoon. The brew pub, on the site of the former Baranof Island Brewery, is open Wednesday through Friday from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m., Saturday from 2 p.m. to 8 p.m. and Sunday 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. (Sentinel Photo by James Poulson)

April 3, 2020, Letters to the Editor


Dear Editor: Thinking about what “Home” means today....

I was talking with my son this week, who lives in New York City...and he mentioned...that it doesn’t feel like the home he moved back to, (after living and working in Italy for a few years)....

He’s been “back home” in NYC...for well over a year (maybe two years now? – I’m losing track of time)...

When he steps out into the street...everything is changed... When he looks out the window.... everything is changed...

He can’t go to all the shows or the movies, or sit down in restaurants...all that has changed.

No more bumping into people, on the busy sidewalks of a city, that almost never stops...all that has changed.

All the loud noises on the city streets, the screeching/honking car horns, the sirens, the subways...all of that has changed.

There is a silence...

All of us, no matter where we live, have moved to a new place now...whether we wanted to or not.

This time of the COVID 19 pandemic has uprooted us all, from the familiar places we have called home.

There is a silence...that leaves us, worrying...longing...wondering...what’s next?

There is a which new ideas are emerging...creative energy is bubbling up...and imaginations are free to roam.

There is a the unknowns of today, and for the days ahead.

But, it will be there, in that silence...where we will find our true home again. Peace,

Rev. Julie Platson, Sitka


Many Thanks

Dear Editor: Many thanks are to be given to Birch Equipment and Nahum Motors for their generous donation of equipment used to establish an upgraded donation area for the White Elephant Shop. We are very grateful to them for helping us in this way.

The White Elephant Board




Dear Editor: I goofed. Big Time. Yesterday. Early. And it ruined the whole day.

This was my third week trying to do an itty bit of disaster research here in the most beautiful town in Alaska.

Bad start.

The Mouse did it.

For the second day, The Mouse was telling me the batteries were low. So, the weary night before I found two AA batteries, turned over The Mouse to remind me to fix it.

So I did. Replaced the old batteries with two new ones in the dim light of dawn.

But The Mouse defied the Fix. Wouldn’t work at all! Shake. Bang. Flip. Nothing. The screen was more blank than before. Not even a cursor. So, rather than writing an inspired bit of insight, I left frustrated, frazzled, furious with the darn technology and my utter dependence on the darn Mouse and just about everything else in this modern world of globalized everything. I left to stew and get some coffee.

When I returned to speak severely to The Mouse, I discovered I had inserted those two batteries firmly, but upside down, wrong way around, the plus to the minus, the minus on the plus. By then I had dissipated all interest in writing. And went back to bed.

But today, I’ve decided I must write. I’ve got a lot to say before I kick the bucket. So here is my summary of a few thoughts, randomly gathered this week:

Disasters generate new terminology. In 1964, “tidal wave “ was replaced by “Tsunami.”

In 1989, The Exxon Valdez Oil Spill became “EVOS,” and in 2020, so far our vocabulary has added COVID-19, N19 and PPE.

Human disasters also rearrange people and stimulate new ideas. Responses include moving, new connections, regulations, research, and sudden science.

Where, I wondered this week, are the Social Sciences in the Covid 19 Pandemic? What has happened to anthropologists? Sociologists? So far it seems information is dominated by economics, money, the rule of “models,” numbers, infections, death, and incompetence. And Task Forces. Ad naseum. But now, finally, mental health. What a boost to psychologists! I hope they keep track and develop some good wholesome words and ideas. Like Depression is Normal. Anxiety can be creative. Also, the richness and the beauty of our cultural and genetic diversity is good stuff.

Might human disasters be to society what mutations are to biology?

Sitkans keep track of the new words, your own creative steps to maintain sanity, wave friendly, supportive vibes, and consider supporting our newest potential cottage industry: buy a home-made mask. I hope I can find a wild one. Or should I buy several to match my Mood of the Day?

Check out a nearby salmonberry bush, watch it bud, and think about those colorful, juicy berries on that same bush soon. Yum!

Nancy Yaw Davis, Sitka




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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 8-5-20)

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 10:30 a.m. Wednesday.

New cases as of Tuesday: 56

Total statewide – 3,449

Total (cumulative) deaths – 25

Active cases in Sitka – 19 (14 resident; 5 non-resident) *

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

The state says the cumulative number of cases hospitalized is 137.

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

Dan and Betty Keck were married 50 years ago and friends are invited to help celebrate. ... They were married at the Church of Christ in Pateros, Wash., and in 1960 loaded up their station wagon, drove to Seattle, flew to Annette Island and on to Sitka. ... They owned The Cellar from 1976 to 1995. Dan was on the Assembly and served as mayor. ...

August 1970

Sitka Purse Seiners Association has endorsed Larry Carr for governor, according to Al Perkins, chairman of the local organization. He said the organization of about 50 members backs Carr for his position on fishing.