How to Escape from Alcatraz Alive

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This Sunday I am embarking on a new challenge; I am taking a stab at escaping from Alcatraz. After months of training and six Ironman Triathlons in my pocket, I am heading to California to take my chances with what even I call a crazy race. Read more.

427 – A Series of Black and White Photos

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The UAA Student Union Gallery presents 427, a series of black and white photographs by UAA BFA graduate Liz Shine, exploring the tangible and intangible elements of memory, family, loss, physical space, and time. Click to read the artist's statement.

Remembering Ruby Rokeberg

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Mike Gordon Ruby Rokeberg Excerpt Looking out the living room window of our duplex on Iliamna Drive I couldn’t have missed Ruby on her hands and knees furiously yanking from the flower bed my newly transplanted flowers. We were new to Alaska, having lived our first year on Government Hill and new to the neighborhood, Susitna View Park, just west of Turnagain-By-the-Sea subdivision, where Mel and Ruby lived. Their son, Norman, and I had become friends. The year was 1954. Read more.

Rhubarb Crunch

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When I was growing up, my Mom often made us Rhubarb Crunch and served it up with a scoop of vanilla ice cream- a delicious dessert we enjoyed during the hot Fairbanks summers. And, here in the Last Frontier, it's the season of rhubarb. See the recipe.

Why I Love Talkeetna, Alaska

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Talkeetna is one of my favorite places in Alaska… It has something, something special. There’s the appeal on the surface; it’s a small, charming town on the edge of the wilderness. Why should you visit? Where should you stay? Where you should you eat? What are the sights to see? Read more.

Memories Sparked by Grandma Bricken from “Ravens Cove”

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Grandmothers are no longer sitting in rockers, knitting socks or being an annoyance to their daughters-in-law—well let’s hope! In reality, grandparents have been economically necessary throughout history. In agrarian times they raised children and boosted family incomes by engaging in cottage trade while parents worked the fields or kept the local shops. I remember the exact spot I first became a grandmother. Read more.

Making of a Refuge: Kanatak Lagoon to McNeil

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In the 1970s biologists did reconnaissance of offshore islands throughout Alaska's coastal areas to determine abundance and distribution of marine mammals and birds to help select lands for new refuges, parks, and monuments that would be created under the 1980 Alaska Lands Act. Their arduous trip used a 15-foot inflatable Zodiac with two 25 hp outboard motors.

Arctic Imperative: Dan Sullivan, Commissioner – Department of Natural Resources, State of Alaska

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This video is of a speech presented by Dan Sullivan, Commissioner, Department of Natural Resources, State of Alaska at the Arctic Imperative Summit in June at Alyeska Resort in Girdwood, Alaska. Click for more.

Roasted Vegetable & Kale Salad With Honey Vinaigrette

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heididrygas-kale5 Here's what I think. When you make something this healthy that tastes this good, it is your responsibility as a human being to share it with the world. And by world, I really mean with all my girlfriends. Because who needs a tofu popscicle or dairy-free/wheat-free/vegan/bilingual/yoga-enthusiast green smoothie when you can eat something that tastes DELICIOUS and probably cures cancer at the same time?! See the recipe.

Anchorage Woodlot to Open with New Location

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The Anchorage Soil and Water Conservation District is hoping to open the Anchorage Woodlot Thursday, May 3, 2012, depending on site conditions. Due to tremendous snow accumulation at the previous location, the woodlot is being moved to the South Anchorage Sports Park this year. The basic cost for remains at $10 per load, all material such as mulch or firewood taken from the woodlot is FREE. Learn more.

The Bird House: A Bar History

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Mike Gordon Bird House Excerpt Although Fairbanks had the Malemute Saloon, Juneau had the Red Dog Saloon and even little Homer had the Salty Dawg Saloon, Anchorage had no bar with an authentic Alaskan theme. In 1967, some high school friends and I bought the Bird House Bar, a funky Alaskan themed bar on the Seward Highway. Read more.

Trouble with a Capital “T”… and Don’t Forget about Ralph

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Not long after moving to Alaska, my mother almost called the cops on me. Such was my transgression that I have little doubt the Anchorage cops would have enlisted the Territorial Police and the U.S. Marshals in hunting me down. Read more.

Friendly’s Fried Clams Go Down Nicely With Art

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jean-august-1 As Jerry Seinfeld says, buying fruit is a gamble—so are some art trips. In mid-July I headed to Providence, Rhode Island to take my art-philosophy Ph.D. orals. My husband, Dave, came along so he could eat tons of lobster and give me hugs. Happily, I passed – though going before academics is scary, even if you’ve studied hours and hours. Stay tuned as it’s going to be fun to report on my project: The Art of Winston Churchill. Read more

Professor Mariano Gonzales – Alone on the ALCAN

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Arctic Entries is the live, monthly storytelling event from your friends and neighbors in anchorage. On our Road Trips show UAA Professor Mariano Gonzalez looks back at being an invincible twenty year old whirling up and down the ALCAN in a VW beattle that only a mechanic could appreciate. To introduce Mariano here is Arctic Entries founder and former host, James Keck. Listen to the full story.
People hold dipnets in the water as a commercial boat floats by

My First Kenai Dipnetting Experience

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Catching salmon on the Kenai River is a bloody, slimy art. You have to be resistant to cold, rain, sand, fish entrails, and huge crowds. As an East Coaster new to “the Last Frontier,” I was completely unprepared for my first dipnetting experience. Read more.

Crisp, Clear Anchorage Autumn (by iphone)

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This is a gallery of photos I took during long walking breaks from an editing project I worked on this fall. I was especially interested in taking photos on these walks because we had such clear, crisp weather for much of autumn with very few dustings of snow. See the gallery.

A Look at Moose Run Metals – Fritz Creek, Alaska

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Tarri Thurman has been a metalsmith for 10 years. Originally a hairdresser from Ann Arbor, Michigan, she moved to Alaska in 1995, working a variety of jobs from back hoe operator to arborist to pizza maker. She sold my first piece of artwork as an apprentice, off the bench, before it was completed. Read more.

Rohan Geographic: 6th Grade Around the World

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My name is Rohan Silbaugh. I am 11 years old and I am traveling with my parents around the world at from my home in Anchorage. We started our trip late in May, 2011 and will return exactly one year later. We have traveled in Asia for five months and will leave tomorrow. We have been to China, Tibet, Nepal, Bhutan, India, and Thailand. I was fascinated by all the astonishing things I saw. Asia is extremely photogenic, requires immensely difficult traveling, and has captivating culture. Click for more photos.

-40: How Does it Feel?

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-30 to -40 low temperatures in Fairbanks today. That kind of cold is an experience which, according to these UAF students, runs the gamut from 'awesome' to 'what do you think'. Click for larger view.

Point Hope, Alaska School Holiday Program

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The annual school Christmas program in Point Hope is a little different than in most communities. Yes, there are seasonally popular songs and carols, but many of them are sung in Inupiaq, the language of the Tikigaqmuit. Read more.