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A Chugiak man has been charged with weapons misconduct after he allegedly shot a black bear while intoxicated.

According to Anchorage Police Department spokeswoman Renee Oistad, police were called to Rusticate Drive at around 2 a.m. on Thursday. Oistad said officers determined Jacob L. T. Stephan, 33, shot and killed a black bear that was eating out of a dumpster, but that the shooting was illegal.

“The situation in which Stephan killed the bear did not constitute ‘defense of life and property,’” Oistad wrote in a Tuesday email.

Nearly every person running for local political office showed up for a candidates’ forum last week in Eagle River for a fast and furious introduction to the community.

“It’s going to be like a speed round,” promised chamber treasurer Julie Estey, who served as emcee of the chamber’s Aug. 1 lunch forum at the Eagle River Ale House.

A Utah hiker was rescued from the mud at the base of Thunderbird Falls on Friday.

According to the Alaska State Troopers, Owen Hagland, 25, reportedly fell while trying to climb the falls and got stuck in the mud. Troopers were notified at around 5:15 p.m., and the Alaska Mountain Rescue Group was called to the scene. Rescuers were was able to get Hagland out of the mud, troopers said; he was reportedly cold but uninjured.

Vehicles stolen

On July 23 at around 3:33 a.m., police received a report that a motorcycle had been stolen from the bed of a pickup truck on Aurora Borealis Road. As of Monday, the bike had not been recovered.

This week’s Greater Eagle River Garden Club Garden of the Week is located at the home of Robert and Amnuay Wrentmore on 10931 Kaskanak Drive. The business Garden of the Week is the Eagle River Brown Jug. To submit a garden for consideration, email [email protected]

The key to a healthy garden is rich, fertile soil. Establishing a good source of compost and adding this to your garden nourishes both the garden plants and the creatures that live in healthy soil. Applying compost to your soil can help stabilize the pH at the level most plants prefer.

When you make your own compost, you are doing what nature is doing all the time naturally around us — only faster. The soil-dwelling microbes are doing the work of decomposing. This slow process by the microbes releases nutrients at a rate that plants can use them.

A gnarly battle over a small ski area’s liquor license isn’t over yet.

In June, the Alaska Alcohol & Marijuana Control Office was supposed to review a recreational site alcohol license for the Arctic Valley Ski Area’s Alpenglow Lodge. However, due to a high number of items on the board’s agenda, the issue was moved to the board’s August meeting in the Interior.

A new treatment center designed to treat substance abuse and mental illness patients will hold a ribbon-cutting and open house ceremony on Thursday, Aug. 2 in Eklutna.

A popular trailhead in Eagle River that leads hikers to Eagle and Symphony lakes was reopened on Friday, just over a month after a brown bear sow in the area killed one man and injured another.

Chugach State Park announced the reopening of the South Fork Eagle River trail in a Facebook post on Friday. The Alaska Department of Fish and Game is still searching for a dangerous bear in the area, the post said, “please consider choosing an alternate venue for your hike.”

Alaska’s peonies have become a desired crop to sell to the Lower 48 for the wedding season because our peonies bloom at 1-2 months later and are perfect for June and July weddings for which they are highly desired. This year, our cool June has slowed the peony crops development. Peonies are picked in the mature bud stage, can be refrigerated for up to two months and will bloom when taken out and placed in water and last for approximately 7-10 days. Peonies have surpassed the rose in popularity for weddings.

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