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Alaska and Yukon Headlines

Victor knew it would be a challenging race

Thu, 2014-03-20 13:40
Doris Bill is the new chief-designate of the Kwanlin Dun First Nation (KDFN).

Node failure triggered cell phone, bank service headaches

Thu, 2014-03-20 13:39
The failure of a communication node in Watson Lake at 8 a.m. Wednesday caused yesterday’s day-long heartache with cell phones and some banking services.

Yukoner sheds light on northern darkness at Toronto film festival

Thu, 2014-03-20 13:36
A Yukon filmmaker is off to an Outside film festival to screen his bicycle-driven short on prolonged Northern darkness — for the seventh year in a row.

Dene Games honour tradition of northern sport

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:41
For many, the events included in the Dene Games and Arctic Sports contingent of the Arctic Winter Games are mysterious and unknown.

Volleyball girls key in on ʻlittle momentsʼ

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:39
After winning their first game in straight sets over Nunavut, the Yukonʼs junior female volleyball team hasnʼt had much go their way since.

Pin trading a sport all on its own

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:37
Some call it the 21st sport of the Arctic Winter Games.

Petro Star says Alaska refiners face crippling economic challenges

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:36
Petro Star says Alaska refiners face crippling economic challenges In-state refineries along the trans-Alaska pipeline say that for them to survive, economic conditions that threaten to suffocate their industry need to be dealt with as soon as possible.March 20, 2014

Yukonʼs medal haul swells to 48

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:35
The Yukon received a boost from its snowshoe contingent yesterday in the form of eight ulus.

Legislature should slam Pandora's box shut and reject 'governor-tag' hunting permit program

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:33
Legislature should slam Pandora's box shut and reject 'governor-tag' hunting permit program OPINION: There are benefits to nonprofit sporting organizations partnering with the state of Alaska through donated hunting permits, but Alaska lawmakers should take great care to avoid opening Pandora's box.March 20, 2014

Big Chugach mountains leave world-class freestyle skier 'terrified'

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:31
Big Chugach mountains leave world-class freestyle skier 'terrified' James Woods has been described as one of the sport's most stylish skiers, but his first time heli-skiing the "big arena" of the Chugach Range made him quake in his boots.March 20, 2014

Man in custody charged with murder of young Wasilla woman missing for 4 years

Thu, 2014-03-20 12:25
Man in custody charged with murder of young Wasilla woman missing for 4 years About a month after Alaska State Troopers reported a hiker had found the skull of Nichole Millsaps in a roadside Southcentral community, a 34-year-old man has been indicted for first- and second-degree murder.March 20, 2014

Buccaneer Energy Suspends CEO

Thu, 2014-03-20 11:44

The board of directors for Buccaneer Energy may be taking the company in a new direction. Last week, the board suspended CEO Curtis Burton.

In a news release, the Buccaneer Board of Directors announced that Burton had been suspended with pay. With little explanation, the board announced that the suspension would be in place until a review could be conducted. In the meantime, Chief Restructuring Officer John T. Young was named interim CEO.

Related: Small Victories, Big Problems for Buccaneer In Alaska

Endeavor jack-up rig. Photo by Bill Smith

The suspension comes on the heels of a string of bad news for Buccaneer. Last December, as the company prepared to move its onshore Glacier drilling rig from Kenai to Homer to begin work on its West Eagle project out East End Road, Buccaneer Alaska President Jim Watt was fired, as was Vice President Allen Huckabay and Alaska Spokesperson Christina Anderson.

Two months later, the company announced that the only well it drilled at West Eagle had come up dry, forcing the company to abandon the project.

It was Burton who led the charge for the Australian oil company to take advantage of tax incentives in Alaska and open up ship in and around Cook Inlet. That foray has led to a few successes – like the two gas-producing wells drilled at Kenai Loop – and a string of problems, like several issues with the company’s jack-up rig Endeavour.

Burton has filed a lawsuit against his employer in District Court in Harris County, Texas. The details of that lawsuit were not immediately known.

Buccaneer announced earlier this month that it has hired Conway MacKenzie, Incorporated to help it organize finances and reevaluate its strategies. Young, the interim CEO, sits on the Conway Mackenzie Board of Directors.

Swedish climate footprint growing; rules for petrol to be loosened

Thu, 2014-03-20 11:07
Swedish climate footprint growing; rules for petrol to be loosened Travel abroad by Swedes accounts for the big difference between domestic and total climate emissions, a new report says. March 20, 2014

AK Beat: USPS comes through on Alaska rate rollback

Thu, 2014-03-20 07:33
AK Beat: USPS comes through on Alaska rate rollback Starting Sunday, the Postal Service is backing down on a January rate hike that increased shipping costs to rural Alaska by 50 percent.March 20, 2014

Trails Bring Communities Out and Together

Thu, 2014-03-20 07:00

It’s been a tough year for snow, with warm temperatures across the state making trails conditions less than ideal. No one knows that better than the Iditarod mushers. But they and their fans were all smiles for the ceremonial start that winds its way along Anchorage’s trails.

Thousands flocked to the trail to cheer, high five the mushers and play in the snow. Those of us watching on the Chester Creek Trail near Airport Heights think we have the coolest spot, but the truth is there are lots of cool spots all along the trail where people are reveling in the fact that this race and this trail bring people together.

Photo by Steve Cleary.

The next day, over 1,300 skiers hit some of the same trails for the Tour of Anchorage. Several country flags still fly over the trail just west of Wesleyan drive. Even though the cross-country ski race was shortened this year due to the lack of snow, it was still a way to celebrate the season and enjoy the trails.

Other ski races follow this month around the state – the Oosik in Talkeetna, the Sonot Kkaazoot in Fairbanks, the Homer Epic and the Sea to Ski, and the Buckwheat Ski Classic in Skagway.

Trails, even in this not-so-wintery winter, bring people together to get outside and have some fun. The Iditarod continues on as more communities get to celebrate the mushers. As the sun returns, more and more people get outside to shake off cabin fever and welcome Spring.

With 250 miles of trails, Anchorage is home to lots of activities and events including Fur Rondy and the Iditarod start, the Special Olympics Alaska Winter Games, dog walking and skijoring, running and biking, snowshoeing and kick-sledding. A recent poll showed that 95% of Anchorage agrees that the trail system contributes toward making Anchorage a great place to live. Trails are good for our health and for our economy.

There are lots of great examples outside of Anchorage as well. Big Lake Trails and other sponsors staged the Big Lake WinterFest in February. WinterFest is a two day event that is uniquely Alaskan and is meant to be a celebration of the ice. It is held on the frozen lake surface at Big Lake. The activities this year included: Big Lake Trails Family Fun Snowmachine Run, 120 Races for the kids, Dog Weight Pulls, Vintage Snowmachine races and lots of good, goofy contests, games and fun.

Alaska Trails has been working for ten years to not only build and maintain Alaska’s world-class trails, but to highlight the many benefits trails bring – not just the recreation we all love, but the health, economic and community benefits they bring as well.

Alaska Trails’ upcoming 2014 Statewide Trails Conference will bring together trail advocates from all over the state to share knowledge, swap good ideas and celebrate Alaska’s trails. We hope you can join us, April 24-26 at APU in Anchorage. Help us continue to make trails in Alaska a year-round community benefit.

Basketball, running and skiing sweep annual Alaska Sports Hall of Fame ceremony

Thu, 2014-03-20 05:38
Basketball, running and skiing sweep annual Alaska Sports Hall of Fame ceremony World-class Alaska athletes like Mario Chalmers and Kikkan Randall were honored at the Anchorage Museum Wednesday night by the Alaska Sports Hall of Fame.March 20, 2014

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