By the start of the New Year, the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce is likely to be heading in a new direction.

Chamber president Colin Fay said Monday the local business organization is in the final stages of its search for an executive director to replace the outgoing Dana Thorp-Patterson.

“It’s going excellent,” Fay said. “We interviewed eight candidates over the long weekend, all of whom were highly qualified.”

A total of 18 local students were selected for the 2017 ASAA/First National Bank Alaska All-State Music Festival, with several earning special recognition at the Nov. 18 event at West High.

Earning coveted “First Chair” honors in the All-State orchestra were Chugiak freshman Charlie Latimer (violin I), junior Julia Koehler (violin II) and junior Claire Mahoney (viola); along with Eagle River senior Sean Harris (oboe). Chugiak junior Eric Rueb was named Second Chair on trombone.

Eagle River didn’t back down from one of Alaska’s hockey heavyweights Thursday night, losing a hard-fought 3-2 decision to undefeated Dimond in a Cook Inlet Conference bout at the McDonald Center in Eagle River.

Nat Nielsen and Ty McEnaney scored for Eagle River, which fell behind 3-1 after two periods before halving the deficit on McEnaney’s goal early in the third.

The Wolves fell to 2-4-0 in the conference, while the first-place Lynx improved to 6-0-0.

Before her senior year of high school, Eagle River’s Anna Ripp didn’t pay much attention to what was happening in the world outside her hometown.

“I don’t think I was socially aware of the issues happening in the world,” Ripp said in a Monday, Nov. 27 interview.

That changed when Ripp and her classmates in Karen Acklin-Williams’s English class began their Social Justice unit, which includes readings from texts such as Richard Wright’s “Black Boy,” Barbara Ehrenreich’s “Nickel and Dimed” and Adam Shepard’s “Scratch Beginnings.”

Chugiak posted its second straight lopsided Cook Inlet Conference win Tuesday, Nov. 28, routing East 11-1 at the McDonald Center in Eagle River.

The Mustangs improved to 3-2-0 in the CIC and have outscored their last two opponents by a combined 21-2 after thrashing winless Bartlett before the Thanksgiving break.

A vehicle crash with entrapment forced a 90-minute closure of the northbound lanes of the Glenn Highway the afternoon of Tuesday, Nov. 28.

The Anchorage Police Department sent out a public Nixle alert about the closure near the Eklutna exit at 3:44 p.m. Tuesday. Spokeswoman Renee Oistad said at least one person was believed to be injured, but didn’t have further details. The highway was reopened around 5 p.m.

Winter officially begins Dec. 21, but anyone around these parts knows the season truly gets underway at Munch time.

This year, the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce’s 25th Annual Merry Merchant Munch and Winter Wonderland celebration will be held Dec. 1-2 in downtown Eagle River. With more than 50 merchants participating — plus the holiday tree-lighting and a visit from Santa Claus — the event promises to bring plenty of holiday cheer to chilly Chugiak-Eagle River.

Peters Creek was overflowing its banks Tuesday as ice jams caused running water to flow down Aurora Borealis Road.

A National Weather Service employee first reported the minor flooding Monday evening, and the service issued a brief statement warning people of the hazard.

“Minor flooding is occurring below (northwest of) the Starner Street bridge along Peters Creek,” read the statement. “The river is at or just over bankfull, and some water is over Aurora Borealis Road.”

Engineering success

A pair of college students who once walked the same halls at Gruening Middle and Eagle River High are currently among the nation’s top scholar athletes. Eagle River’s Andrew Shortridge and Chugiak’s Ed Hall are both mechanical engineering majors who are building impressive resumes in their respective fields, with both in the midst of award-winning seasons in athletics and academics.

If there’s one thing I’m sure we can all agree on, it’s that there have been enough special legislative sessions this year!

At least the session that wound up Tuesday resulted in some important revisions to Alaska’s criminal justice reform effort. We passed Senate Bill 54 to fix some of the worst elements of Senate Bill 91, the big 2016 crime reform bill.

A fresh shipment of holiday cheer is on its way to U.S. troops stationed overseas via the sentiments of Alaska’s schoolchildren and the work of some stateside supporters.

An all-volunteer effort organized by the Alaska Veterans Museum, this year’s project generated about 10,000 cards and letters from students at 34 schools in the Anchorage School District. The cards are written by kids just in advance of the holidays and distributed by the national Friends of Our Troops organization.

Winter is here.

Ice fishing huts and Nordic ski tracks have recently started to appear around Chugiak-Eagle River, heralding the onset of true winter.

Civilian crime fighting efforts continue to expand in Chugiak-Eagle River, where Anchorage Assembly member Amy Demboski is spearheading a new coordinated neighborhood watch program to supplement the work being done by the five-person Birchwood Community Patrol.

Santa’s helpers have been busily hanging Christmas decorations and stringing up lights at a Boy Scout camp in Chugiak, which for the second year is being transformed into a temporary holiday village.

“We’re putting on the final touches,” Christmas Towne owner Cortney Moore said Monday, four days before the annual venture opens on Black Friday.

Moore started Christmas Towne last year with her husband, Jason, as a way to spread Christmas cheer and create a place where children could experience “something magical,” she said.

Chugiak got scoring contributions from 10 different players in a 10-1 Cook Inlet Conference hockey win over Bartlett on Tuesday, Nov. 21 at the McDonald Center in Eagle River.

Danny Casey led the was with four goals for the Mustangs, who also got two goals and three asssists from Luke Momblow. Also getting their numbers in the scoring columns were Josh Boneta (two assists), Grant Epple (goal, three asissts), Jacob Kosinski (goal, assist), Peter Symmes (goal, assist), Noah Denny (assist), George Kerr (two assists), Riley Lindberg (goal) and goalie Tanner Holta (assist).

Douglas Frey would rather be safe than sorry.

“I shred everything,” Frey told the Chugiak-Eagle River Chamber of Commerce during its biweekly luncheon Nov. 15 at the Eagle River Ale House.

Frey is a vice president at Northrim Bank, where he’s in charge of security and business continuity. It’s a job that puts Frey in constant contact with some of the worst actors on the Internet — and there’s a lot of them out there.

“The threats that we face are constantly changing,” Frey told the chamber.

People in Chugiak really, really don’t like a proposal to allow for higher density housing on a parcel of land located near the McDonald Center in Eagle River.

At its Nov. 16 meeting, the Chugiak Community Council renewed its objection to the much-maligned proposal by the Heritage Land Bank board of directors, which will go before the municipal Planning and Zoning Commission Dec. 11.

“Heritage Land Bank is proceeding along just as they planned,” said Sandy Quimby, who has been an opponent of the proposal since she first learned of it more than a year ago.

An advisory board representing Chugiak-Eagle River area community councils renewed its objection to plans by the Heritage Land Bank to change the allowable housing density on 92 acres of municipal owned land in Eagle River.

At its Saturday, Oct. 28 meeting at the Eagle River Town Center, the Chugiak-Eagle River Advisory Board voted unanimously to oppose any changes to increase housing density in the Carol Creek Site Specific Land Use Plan.

Mirror Lake Middle School students know their stuff.

The Coyotes were a howling success at this year’s Big Wild Life Trivia Contest, with Caitlin McGinnis winning the overall title to lead four MLMS students in the top six spots at the citywide contest.

Shannon Brion placed third in the event, which is sponsored by Visit Anchorage and the Anchorage School District. Jolie Robison finished fifth and Josh Saylor was sixth.

When was the last time you checked your phone? If you’re reading this article, there’s a good chance you’re doing it right now — more than 60 percent of Star readers now get their news from a mobile device; if not, it’s likely you looked at the device in the last hour — studies show Americans check their devices dozens to hundreds of times per day.

The use of screened devices has become ingrained in modern society, and that’s especially true among teens, who according to the Pew Research Center send an average 30 text messages a day.

Pages

Subscribe to The Alaska Star RSS