September 13, 2013 Community Happenings

Mining is Topic
    Of Presentation
    A public presentation on mining, regulations, and mining for sustainable communities will be held 6 p.m. Sept.19 in the Centennial Hall Maksoutoff room.
    The guest speaker is Bob Loeffler, former director of the state Division of Mining, Land and Water and current visiting professor at UAA Institute of Social and Economic Research. The event is hosted by the Sitka Economic Development Association.

    SAFV to Offer
    Training Sessions
    SAFV’s free Community Training continues 9 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday with women’s and legal advocacy, and 6-9 p.m. Monday with sessions on the impact of domestic violence on children and mandatory reporting.
    Sessions are open to the public and held at the Unitarian Fellowship Hall at 408 Marine Street. For more information call Sitkans Against Family Violence at 747-3370.

    Farmers Market
    Set for Saturday
    The final Sitka Farmers Market of the season will be 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday at the ANB Founders Hall.
    Local food, jewelry and crafts will be for sale. Slack Tide will perform.
    ‘‘Please join us in bringing the sixth annual Sitka Farmers Market to a grand close, and support your local food system,’’ Garrett Bauer said. ‘‘Be sure to get there early.’’

Sealaska Gets Grant for
Tlingit Language Study
    Sealaska Heritage Institute has received a federal grant to fund a Tlingit language mentor-apprentice program in Southeast Alaska.
    The $454,828 grant from the Administration of Native Americans for Language Preservation and Maintenance will establish a Tlingit mentor-apprentice program that works towards perpetuating and revitalizing the Tlingit language.
    SHI will partner with fluent speakers, advanced Tlingit learners, and three Southeast communities – including Sitka – to increase the number of fluent Tlingit speakers under the age of 60 by 300 percent over three years.
    “We now have teachers, we have language learners, and we have material, and so this is absolutely a great event for us to be able to now have a formal program,” said SHI President Rosita Worl.
    The project, Bridging Challenges to Fluency Through Partnerships: Establishing a Tlingit Mentor-Apprentice Program, will create six mentor-apprentice teams to engage in 260 hours of one-on-one language immersion each year for three years and participate in annual Tlingit immersion retreats that will rotate between the partners’ villages.
    Pairing mentors and apprentices in immersion language environments has proven to build fluent language speakers for other cultural groups, SHI said. A committee will be formed to develop and refine curriculum materials to help guide the language teams.
    While there are estimated to be only 200 Tlingit speakers remaining. Many students learning the language, and it’s important, Worl says, that these language learners achieve the next level of Tlingit fluency and that they are able to teach. Preference for the mentor-apprentice teams will be given to those who have some language skills and who have been involved in teaching or developing language curriculum.
    Worl emphasized that language preservation is directly tied to cultural preservation.
    “All languages reflect their world views,” she said. “And there is a lot of knowledge and experience embedded in that language. And for our human society that’s been around for thousands and thousands of years we want to be able to capture and preserve that knowledge.”
    Sealaska Heritage Institute was founded in 1980 to promote cultural diversity and cross-cultural understanding. The institute is governed by a Board of Trustees and guided by a Council of Traditional Scholars. Its mission is to perpetuate and enhance Tlingit, Haida, and Tsimshian cultures of Southeast Alaska.

    Any Deer Season
    To Open Sept. 15
    The season for does and bucks (any deer) will open on Sept. 15 for Game Management Unit 4, including the Northeast Chichagof Controlled Use Area.
    The season is scheduled to run through Dec. 31. A deer check station will be located on the Hoonah road system to collect biological information, such as age, sex, and physical condition, of harvested deer, as well as hunter effort information.
    The check station will help monitor the female harvest as the season continues since the northern area of Chichagof Island’s deer population has recovered at a slower rate than the remainder of GMU 4.
    The areas south of Tenakee Inlet show considerable increases in the deer population, based on  browsing evidence, and hunters are encouraged to add does to their harvest this year. Although the unit experienced another late spring green-up, little evidence of winter kill was found, Fish and Game said.
    While the green-up was delayed, a lack of deep snow allowed deer access to browse and above-normal summer temperatures resulted in good plant growth and availability throughout the unit. GMU 4 deer populations have traditionally rebounded after hard winters and can reach the point where they exceed the long-term carrying capacity of the habitat. A higher prevalence of twin fawns and yearlings, observed during fieldwork over the few years, also supports the need to harvest some does to slow the population growth.
    Hunters must have deer harvest tickets and a valid hunting license in their possession while hunting. Harvest tickets must be validated in sequential order and unused tickets must be carried while hunting.
    Hunters are required to submit a deer harvest report within 15 days of taking the bag limit, or 15 days after the close of the season, even if they did not hunt. In all hunts limited to one sex, evidence of sex must remain naturally attached to the meat or antlers must remain naturally attached to the entire carcass, with or without viscera.
    A fact sheet is available at the Sitka Area Fish and Game office to help hunters answer many of the deer hunting questions that arise each year. For more information  contact the Sitka area office at 747-5449.

    UAS to Offer
    WhaleFest Class
    The University of Alaska Southeast Sitka Campus will offer topics in marine mammalogy for WhaleFest. The audioconference/face-to-face course will meet 6-8 p.m. Thursdays beginning Sept. 19. The three-credit class will be taught by Jan Straley, associate professor of marine biology.
    Students will read and discuss a series of papers on the 2013 Sitka WhaleFest theme “Arctic Sea Change: What’s Ahead?” They will review topic papers from each presenter, and will be required to attend WhaleFest in Sitka Nov. 1-3. The webiste is
    To learn more about this class and other UAS Sitka Campus programs, stop by the campus, call 747-7700, or go online at

    Federal Subsistence Board
    Schedules Hearing in Sitka
    The Federal Subsistence Board will hold a public hearing to accept public testimony and written comments on the federal Subsistence Management Program’s rural determination process. The hearing will be held 4-6 p.m. Sept. 27 at Centennial Hall.
    The public can attend in person or telephonically at 1-888-455-5897, passcode: 3344290. Testimony presented at the meetings will be recorded for the public record. Written comments received, including any personal information provided, will be available to the public.
    Title VIII of the Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act provides a subsistence priority for rural Alaska residents for harvesting fish and wildlife resources on federal public lands. Only residents of communities or areas determined to be rural are eligible under federal subsistence regulations for the subsistence priority.
    The secretaries of the Interior and Agriculture are responsible for the process by which the rural determinations are made. The Federal Subsistence Board uses the secretaries’ process to make the rural determinations.
    In 2009, the secretary of the Interior called for a review of the Federal Subsistence Management Program to “ensure that the program is best serving rural Alaskans and that the letter and spirit of Title VIII (of ANILCA) are being met.”
    As a result of the review, heads of the Interior and Agriculture directed the Federal Subsistence Board to conduct a review of the rural determination process and develop recommendations for the Secretaries on how to improve the process.
    The Federal Subsistence Board initiated a review of the rural determination process on Dec. 31, 2012, with the publication of a Federal Register Notice requesting comments on the following components of the process: population thresholds, rural characteristics, aggregation of communities, timelines and information sources. The deadline to submit comments is Nov. 1, 2013.
    The Federal Subsistence Board plans to meet April 15–17, 2014, in Anchorage to review the comments. The board may then make recommendations to  the Interior and Agriculture on possible changes to improve the process. These recommendations would be based on the Federal Subsistence Regional Advisory Councils’ recommendations, results of Tribal and ANCSA corporation consultations, and public comments.
    If the secretaries make changes to the rural determination process, a proposed rule will be published in the Federal Register as required by the Administrative Procedure Act.
    Meeting dates and locations are subject to change. For updated public hearing information, visit the Federal Subsistence Management Program website,, or contact the Office of Subsistence Management at 800-478-1456, (907)786-3888 or by e-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

    Unitarians Meet
    At the Sunday Unitarian Fellowship program, participants will develop   a personal 45-second “elevator speech” describing “What I Believe” and explore how their beliefs fit within the principles of Unitarian Universalism. Gretchen Matiatos will facilitate the program.
    The fellowship begins at 10:30 a.m. The program will begin at 10:45 a.m. The Fellowship Hall is located at 408 Marine Street, with parking behind, off Spruce Street.

    Alaska Day Items
    At White E Shop
    Starting with the noon-3 p.m. Saturday opening, the White Elephant Shop will have a limited amount of Alaska Day attire/items available. Also on sale will be semi-formal/party dresses available for the upcoming special events.

    Former Minister
    To be in Sitka
    Former minister Michael Meier and his wife Toni will visit Sitka Sept. 17-20. An open house is slated Sept. 18 at the home of Lois Rhodes, 710 Lake Street. All are invited to stop by and visit with them.

    Mees, Burke, ‘‘The Lost Art.’’ Self published. Soft cover. Comb bound. 105 pages. $20.
    How do you make a non-pilot, know-nothing-about-airplanes reviewer eagerly read and smile and heartily laugh over a manual of instructions on how to operate tailwheel airplanes, a vanishing breed?
    Simple. You add bloodthirsty ninjas, a super villain, a group of motorcycle bikers who have become the Flying Hogs, and a few trustworthy friends who also want to keep humans in command of the world, and some clever writing.
     The premise is simple; tailwheel planes are old-fashioned and need hands-on piloting unlike the increasing technology that makes real pilots superfluous. Therefore, an evil genius and minions (terms we need to indicate real villainy) are dedicated to conquering the world, especially by foul means. (Your reviewer laughed out loud at the advent of the Siren; beautiful, of course, with a lovely voice and seductive brown eyes. She invites our hero to board her plane. He does, and falls deeply in love with her jet; the leather seats, the sleek lines; almost impossible to remain impervious.)
    The author of the respected Seaplane Instructor’s Manual decided to have fun with this, as well as issue real instructions for various extant tailwheel planes. If you are as clueless as your reviewer about such planes, they are defined by the center of gravity relative to the main wheels; in these, the center is behind the main wheels and leave the pilot totally in charge of taking off and landing, not the automated actions of more modern planes.
    Real pilots will take far more from this than your reviewer as they will learn the intricacies of the different types of planes as well as the nefarious plans of Blotius the Evil and his followers, as well as the ragtag honest, loyal band who want to save Humankind. Recruits are needed; contact Knight Mees for details.
–Dee Longenbaugh

    Donations Sought
    For Service Project
    Sitka AmeriCorps is seeking donations for a service project to create two ‘‘new beginnings kits’’ for families or persons displaced by home fires. A drive is slated 10 a.m.-1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 14, at the Sitka Fire Hall to receive items.
     The kits will include new towels, blankets, cleaning supplies, paper products, and other items that are used daily. New items, gift cards and cash will be accepted. No large items can be taken as there is no room to store them.
    ‘‘We are looking to fill the needs of items used daily that are often not thought of when donations come in for fire victims,’’ the AmeriCorps group said.
    Kits will be given out by the fire department to families displaced by home fires.
    Those with questions may call Faith Lee at 752-0306.

    Jam Session
    Class on Tap
    Musicians wanting to increase their skill in playing folk, blues and bluegrass music in a jam session are being  encouraged to sign up for the Greater Sitka Arts Council jam class. It will be taught by Ted Howard 7 p.m. Oct. 7, 14, 21 and 28 in the Yaw Chapel building on the SJ Campus.
    The cost is $100 for the four sessions. All material will be provided and songs will be taught and played slowly. Contact Ted Howard at 747-5482 to reserve a spot in the class.

    Parking Changes
    At Sitka High
    Sitka High School’s front parking lot – on the south side of the building – will be closed to traffic all day Friday and Saturday, Sept. 13 and 14, for repairs and re-painting.
    All traffic, including buses, will be using the rear parking lot – near the Performing Arts Center – for drop-off and pick-up.
    Those with questions may call Sitka High at 747-3263.

    Public Hearing on
    Mountain Goats Set
    The Sitka District Ranger, under the authority granted by the Federal Subsistence Board, will hold a public hearing to share information and solicit public comments concerning mountain goat management in Unit 4 at 7 p.m. Sept. 16 in the Centennial Hall Rousseau room.
    The Alaska Department of Fish and Game will review current management strategies and present information related to mountain goat harvest and population trends. Those unable to attend in person may call 1-888-858-2144 and enter the passcode 1331636.
    For additional information, contact the Sitka Ranger District. Justin Koller, subsistence biologist, may be reached  at 747-4297 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .
    Migrant Education
    Recruitment Slated
    The Sitka School District is recruiting students and families involved in seasonal or temporary work in commercial or subsistence fishing, logging or agriculture that may be eligible for the Migrant Education Program
    The Migrant Education Program provides an awareness and coordination of school and community programs to help migrant students and their families connect to services. The program also values the importance of reading and literacy. The Migrant Book Program encourages students to read and promotes family literacy activities.
    Eligibility is based on families who have moved across school district boundaries to engage in commercial fishing, subsistence fishing, logging, or agricultural activities and whose migrant activity is an economic necessity for the family.
    Those whose family may be eligible for the program may call Danielle Cassedy at 966-1376.

IN APPRECIATION – The Environmental Services staff at Sitka Community Hospital celebrates Environmental Services Week Sept. 8-14. The hospital board, administration, employees, residents and patients of Sitka Community Hospital expressed appreciation to the Environmental Services Department for its untiring commitment to taking care of the community hospital. ‘‘They are the true unsung heroes of healthcare and play an important role in patient care, especially infection prevention,’’ said Manager Elisabeth Crane. “We applaud our staff for their excellent service and work, not only for this special week, but every day.” (Photo by Angela McGraw)

    Program Listed
    The Discovery Club, a kindergarten after-school program offered by Mt. Edgecumbe Preschool, runs 1:30-4 p.m. Monday through Thursday, and pick-up is available from the Baranof kindergarten classrooms. Children may attend either two or four days per week.
    Homeschool kindergarten children are also welcome. Call 966-2675 for more information.
    Preschool Offered
    Mt. Edgecumbe Preschool has limited space available in its afternoon preschool class. Classes run 1-3:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday, with options for either two to four days per week. Extended care is also available. Call 966-2675 for more information.

    T’akdeintoon Clan
    Party in Juneau
    The T’akdeintaan clan party for Florence Bennett will be held Oct. 26 at the Tlingit and Haida Community Hall on Hospital Drive in Juneau.
    No invitation is necessary; all Eagle clan members are invited.

    Barn Dance Set
    A community barn dance is set 7-9:30 p.m. Sept. 21 at Blatchley Middle School.
    All are invited to participate in mixers, circles and contra dances, or listen to the live music of Sitka’s Fishing for Cats band. Beginners and seasoned dancers of all ages are invited.
    Dances are taught and called. No partner is needed and no dancing experience is necessary. The first hour of the dance will be geared to beginners and young dancers.
    The dance is a non-alcohol adn smoke-free Community School event. For more information call 747-3412.

    Owners, Renters
    Given Notice
    Landlords and tenants who have questions about the laws regarding the Alaska Landlord and Tenant Act are invited to a presentation via teleconference by an Alaska Legal Services Office 1 p.m. Sept. 16.
    Those wanting to attend are asked to call Marie at the Sitka LIO, 747-6276.
    Reminder: Parking
    Citations Enforced
    Parking citations will be enforced beginning Sept. 13.
    Sitka Police Department said that citations have not been issued throughout the summer due to a rule change by the Alaska Court System. As of Aug. 13, local ordinances pertaining to parking enforcement were changed to satisfy the state requirements.
    The department said that what constitutes a parking violation has not changed. The areas where the SPD puts special emphasis on for enforcement are the airport, downtown 4-7 a.m. zones, and along the city streets and state highways where there will be snow removal and street sweeping.
    ‘‘This public announcement is being offered to make the driving public aware that more parking enforcement will be taking place so that drivers are more aware of the potential for being issued a citation for a parking violation,’’ SPD said.
    For more information on the Sitka General code and parking violations in particular go to the City of Sitka website at and click on the link for the Sitka General Code. The parking ordinances are under Chapter 11:40.

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At a Glance

(updated 5-25-22)

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 11:55 pm Wednesday, May 25.

New cases as of Wednesday: 1,911

Total cases (cumulative) statewide – 251,425

Total (cumulative) deaths – 1,252

Total (cumulative) hospitalizations – 3,776

Current Hospitalizations – 46

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

COVID in Sitka

The Sitka community level is now "medium.'' Case statistics are as of Wednesday.

Cases in last 7 days – 25

Cumulative Sitka cases – 2,658

Hospitalizations (to date) – 32

Deceased (cumulative) – 6

The local case data are from Alaska DHSS.





May 2002


From Sitka’s Past by Robert DeArmond: May 14, 1878 – The steamer California brought a cannery crew to Sitka for one of the first two salmon canneries in Alaska. The cannery, located at Starrigavan, operated for only two seasons and was abandoned.

May 1972

 The work of four Sitka artists will be represented in the Ketchikan Arts and Crafts Guild Traveling Show. The artists are Alice Bergdoll, Linda Larsen, Marilyn Nevers and Clint Miller.