Dick Griffith is a doer, not a talker.

“I don’t know anything,” said Griffith, a longtime Eagle River Nature Center benefactor and a living legend among Alaska’s outdooring set.

The gruff Griffith knows a hell of a lot more than he lets on. The 90-year-old “adventurer’s adventurer” has compiled an almost unreal resume of rambling during his nine decades, including legendary pioneering trips down the Grand Canyon, death-defying treks across the Arctic and a laundry list of exploits in the Alaska backcountry.

Seventh-grader Josh Saylor had never encountered the word “pompier” before he was challenged to spell it as the winning word in the Alaska State Spelling Bee last week.

But the Mirror Lake Middle School spelling whiz was undaunted. He requested the word origin (French) and confidently spelled P-O-M-P-I-E-R to secure the statewide spelling championship for the second year in a row.

“I would have spelled it wrong if I didn’t know it was a French word,” Saylor said demurely.

Items in the Police Briefs are taken from the Anchorage Police Department’s online crime mapping system. Details about individual events are provided by the department’s public information office. Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

When a southbound truck slammed its oversized load into the Glenn Highway’s South Eagle River Road overpass last week, it did more than interrupt traffic for thousands of local residents and commuters. It reignited public discussion about just how vulnerable Southcentral Alaska’s transportation system really is.

Thankfully, no one was injured directly. But the collision damaged the overpass such that engineers with the Department of Transportation &Public Facilities shut down traffic, fearing chunks of concrete might continue falling from the bridge into southbound traffic.

To submit a calendar item, visit events.alaskastar.com or email [email protected]

Thursday, March 29

Toddler Time: 10:30 a.m., Chugiak-Eagle River Library (12001 Business Boulevard). Twenty minutes of short stories, songs and lots of repetition to build early literacy skills for children ages 3 and under and their caregivers. Free event; visit anchoragelibrary.org or call (907) 343-1530 for more information.

Locals initiated to honor society

The following local residents were recently initiated into The Honor Society of Phi Kappa Phi, the nation’s oldest and most selective collegiate honor society for all academic disciplines.

Joshua Craft of Chugiak and Rachel Raley of Eagle River were initiated at University of Alaska Anchorage.

JBER — Adolescents today face a widespread chronic health problem: sleep deprivation, according to sleepfoundation.com.

Anchorage School District is considering offering more sleep to adolescents, while maximizing learning opportunities for young children, by beginning school days later for high school students and earlier for elementary school students.

Later start times can allow high school students to get more sleep.

Monday, March 19

12 pm: Traffic violations, Artillery Road

6:48 pm: Traffic collision, Eagle River Loop Road

8:32 pm: Eluding, Eagle River Road

Tuesday, March 20

2:23 am: Drunk problems, Eagle River Loop Road

1:25 pm: Traffic violations, Davidson Drive and Stoltze Drive

11:57 pm: Traffic collision, Glenn Hwy

Wednesday, March 21

1:09 pm: Traffic collision, Artillery Road

5 pm: Credit/bank card fraud, Amchitka

President Donald Trump’s pick for CIA director is about to experience a good Borking.

No one doubts her professionalism, and she’s been endorsed by Obama intelligence officials. Yet Gina Haspel’s long career at the agency, including extensive work undercover in the field, is getting blotted out by her reported involvement in the CIA’s black-site interrogation program, which has become a warrant to say anything about her.

Well it is snowning, raining, melting mess outside. What does that mean for Chugiak-Eagle River children? Time for the annual Easter Egg Hunt at Lions Park on Easter Sunday at 1 p.m.

Here is a little history for all the adults and children out there that might like to know about the Easter Bunny. Early German writings from the 1500s mention the legend of the Easter Bunny.

Having just finished fourth in the state tournament with an impressive 66-47 win against West Anchorage in the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska 4A Girls Basketball State Championships, sixth-year Chugiak coach Ryan Hales has reason to be optimistic for the future with his family of young athletes.

Sophomore and all-tournament selection Chasity Horn stayed hot throughout the tournament, finishing with 20 points against the Eagles last Saturday, which followed a career-high 30 against Ketchikan to reach the consolation bracket final.

A second-place finish in conference and third in state is less than the 18-11 regular season Chugiak Mustangs wanted, but still a strong finish overall, and their best result in many a year.

To get there, the Mustangs dominated in overtime of the third-place game against West Anchorage in the ASAA/First National Bank Alaska 4A Boys Basketball State Championships.

Chugiak defeated the Eagles 62-54 for the second time in as many weeks in a playoff setting.

Police calls from March 12-19

Monday, March 12

5:10 am: Traffic collision, Birchwood Loop Road

7:10 am: Traffic collision, Glenn Hwy and Old Glenn

9:24 am: Traffic violations, Icefall Drive

8:30 pm: Assault, Whirlaway

Tuesday, March 13

3:18 am: Traffic violations, Berthod Drive and Breckonridge Way

6:47 am: Traffic violations, Pribilof Drive

8:37 am: Traffic violations, Glacier View Drive

8:43 am: Traffic collision, Hall Drive

Wednesday, March 14

There’s already a trade war, and it’s being waged by Beijing.

China’s ascension to the World Trade Organization nearly 20 years ago has failed in its strategic objectives. It hasn’t created a liberalizing regime or a free-market economy in China; in fact, it hasn’t even created a China ready and willing to abide by the norms of free trade.

Veteran musher Jim Lanier was about 40 miles away from the Iditarod Trail Sled Dog Race finish line in Nome when things started to go wrong.

He lost the trail in strong winds and darkness, had to huddle with another musher for hours in freezing temperatures, and without emergency help, he said, death would have been certain.

The Chugiak Community Council hosted a forum of Anchorage mayoral candidates on March 15. The candidates included Rebecca Logan, Tim Huitt, Paul Kendall, Matthew Mendonsa and Dustin Darden. Current Mayor Ethan Berkowitz cited previous commitments for not attending.

The candidates answered questions by the council and those in attendance on various issues.

Rebecca Logan

Friday, March 23

Toddler Time. 10:30 a.m., Chugiak-Eagle River Library (12001 Business Boulevard). Twenty minutes of short stories, songs and lots of repetition to build early literacy skills for children ages 3 and under and their caregivers. Free event; visit anchoragelibrary.org or call (907) 343-1530 for more information.

The theft of around 50 Anchorage municipal election ballots from Chugiak mailboxes in a theft spree last week has triggered an ongoing investigation by federal postal inspectors and Anchorage police.

After months of reports about Amazon packages, passports and birthday cash swiped from Chugiak mailboxes, neighborhood crime watch apps and social media pages were abuzz with mail theft reports starting early Friday morning, March 16. Residents posted photos of entire clusters of emptied mailboxes left agape as well as patches of discarded mail and ballots littering various streets.

Chugiak alum part of DIII champs

Items in the Police Briefs are taken from the Anchorage Police Department’s online crime mapping system. Details about individual events are provided by the department’s public information office. Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty.

Domestic violence

Officers responded to a residence on Ridd Circle on March 14 around 2:45 p.m. in regards to a physical altercation between mother and son.

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