Friday, February 22, 2008

Fur Rendezvous

This annual event in Anchorage, Alaska, has evolved over the years. I don't even have any pictures to post at this time, so you'll have to close your eyes and imagine a little main street with piles of snow all pushed to the side, causing burms the whole distance, and dog teams racing down Fourth Avenue for a 3 day race. This traditional winter event almost fell thru the cracks with the advent of the Iditarod Races. Also, the gaming laws ruled out the Monte Carlo Night, which was one of the highlights, and the Fur Auction is almost gone, too. The stock car races are gone, and the Miners and Trappers Ball threatened extinction. However, the city of Anchorage came thru and bailed Fur Rondy, as its now called, out, and the paper says its thriving. We'll see, because tomorrow morning is the annual Pancake Feed, held in Pioneer Hall, right downtown. The Pioneers of Alaska are a group of older residents, as you need to be here 30 yrs. to qualify for membership. The men Pioneers do the cookin' and the lady Pioneers do the set-up, serving, etc. and they may attract well over a thousand diners. I predict that tomorrow will find a far less attendance, due to the downtown construction with road closures and lack of parking. Also, the weather has not cooperated, because after heaps of snow, there have been a few days of thawing, making everything sloppy, messy, slippery. Well, we'll see how it turns out. The Miners and Trappers Ball is tomorrow night, and at the same time, the Senior Center has a dinner with 4 old Alaskans telling tales of the old days. Anyhow, it's a big week in Anchorage, prior to the start of the Iditarod Races, which start on March 1st. So check back, and I promise some images!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Fairbanks Winter

The second largest city in Alaska is Fairbanks, and some things we do in Anchorage, they outdo. I am referring to the beautiful ice sculptures the locals carve. With the temperatures below zero, it takes a special skill because the ice will crack if you put hot water on the ice. . . and think of wearing thick warm gloves while trying to be sensitive to the shaping. You can tell I don't get involved with all this, but as a spectator, I appreciate all the labor that goes into these. I'm posting just some of my favorites, and hope you will enjoy them, too.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Valentine's Day

This is a great day for lovers. . . that goes beyond people, too . . . literally, you can't love an inamimate object, so this would include trees, flowers, and computers. Let's say, I have a love/hate relationship with the latter. But you can love your dog, and he can love you back. I guess I'm resolved to that. Seeing the darling Beagle Uno, that just won the Westchester Kennel Show, you can easily see how you can love that little guy. Imagine beating out all the big showdogs and specialty breeds. Good for him.
Well, this isn't too exciting a blog today because I just set up a blog for our magic circle so my clever stuff needs to go there to get some subscribers. In the meantime, hang in there with me until I get goin' again . ..

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Alaska Railroad

There's nothing more beautiful than a drive down the Alyeska Highway, and this picture of Bird Point en route to Alyeska and beyond is the best capture I can find, stolen from the railroad, but highly recommended. The continuing route to Seward takes you some distance from the highway, thru a pristine area of mountains, lakes, and beauty. Happy touring.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Anchorage Diversions

Believe it! 35 below, so what can we do to take our mind off of this chill?
The Public Library started a great program called "Booklovers Gone Wild", and today the National Endowment for the Arts funded The Big Read. This was a reading of the courtroom scene from "To Kill a Mockingbird" featuring local celebrities. The theatre was full-up, and everyone enjoyed this diversion.

Today is also the presidential caucuses. . . now I hope someone will comment on this misspelling ... isn't the plural "cauci" if I remember my Latin. . . and for me, the Pioneers of Alaska Igloos meet, but that's a story for another day.

Monday, February 4, 2008

Anchorage Ski for Women

I've been reading a blog written up in today's paper... Shake Your Beauty which is pretty classy. However, beauty tips are secondary here to searching for ways to survive in our minus degree weather. It's the middle of the day for me, and still in the single digits. Yesterday was no different, and Anchorage hosted the Ski For Women Benefit, which didn't deter most of the entrants. This is the largest women's cross country ski race in the country I understand, and benefits women's shelters in Anchorage. I'm posting a picture of one of the groups, honoring our Anchorage Symphony and Conductor. Each year the costumes get more elaborate. Remember this is in a typical sunny zero degree weather day.
Confession: I opted to go to a Super Bowl Party at the Petroleum Club (indoors).