National Guard Opens Emergency Shelter in Kenai

The Alaska Army National Guard Armory in Kenai is open as an emergency shelter for Kenai Peninsula Borough residents who are without power.

Homer Electric Association estimates that around 3,000 homes and businesses in the central Kenai Peninsula do not have power currently. Work will continue through the night but it could be Friday before power is restored to all.

Shelter location:

Alaska Army National Guard Armory

105 Forest Drive

Kenai, AK 99611

(907) 283-1435


The American Red Cross of Alaska will be supporting the shelter with local Red Cross Volunteers and an Anchorage Office Red Cross Shelter Manager.  To help support sheltering operations go tohttp://www.alaska.redcross.org/


Contact the Kenai Peninsula Borough at (907) 714-2484. Warming stations have been established at the Kenai and Nikiski Fire Stations.


Homer Electric Association estimates that well over 5,000 homes and businesses around the central Kenai Peninsula do not have power.  For information on power outages call        1-888-8OUTAGE or visit http://www.homerelectric.com/


The State Emergency Operation Center is currently at level 3 to monitor the Kenai Peninsula power outage and 2011 West Coast Storm. Level 3 indicates an actual event has occurred.

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Lori Townsend is the News Director for the Alaska Public Radio Network. She got her start in broadcasting at the age of 11 as the park announcer of the fast pitch baseball games in Deer Park, Wisconsin.

She has worked in print and broadcast journalism for more than 18 years. She was the co-founder and former Editor of Northern Aspects, a magazine featuring northern Wisconsin writers and artists. She worked for 7 years at tribal station WOJB on the Lac Courte Oreilles Ojibway Reservation in Wisconsin, first as an on-air programmer and special projects producer and eventually News Director.

In 1997 she co-hosted a continuing Saturday afternoon public affairs talk program on station KSTP in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Radio brought her to Alaska where she worked as a broadcast trainer for Native fellowship students at Koahnic Broadcasting. Following her work there, she helped co-found the non-profit broadcast company Native Voice Communications with veteran Alaskan broadcasters Nellie Moore, D’Anne Hamilton, Len Anderson, Sharon McConnell and Veronica Iya. NVC created the award-winning Independent Native News as well as producing many other documentaries and productions. Townsend was NVC’s technical trainer and assistant producer of INN.

Through her freelance work, she has produced news and feature stories nationally and internationally for Independent Native News, National Native News, NPR , Pacifica, Monitor Radio, Radio Netherlands and AIROS. Her print work and interviews have been published in News from Indian Country, Yakama Nation Review and other publications. Ms. Townsend has also worked as a broadcast trainer for the Native American Journalist’s Association and with NPR’s Doug Mitchell and as a freelance editor. Townsend is the recipient of numerous awards for her work from the Alaska Press Club, the Native American Journalists Association and a gold and a silver reel award from the National Federation of Community Broadcasters.

Townsend was the recipient of a Fellowship at the Metcalf Institute for Marine and Environmental Reporting in Rhode Island as well as a fellowship at the Knight Digital Media Center in Berkeley.

She is an avid reader, a rabid gardener and counts water skiing, training horses, diving and a welding certification among her past and current interests.

ltownsend (at) alaskapublic (dot) org  |  907.550.8452 | About Lori