Monday, March 31, 2008

My Alaska is BIG!

I love this map, as it really shows how vast Alaska is. A trip anywhere in the state in always exciting, and this year, I've had meetings to attend in Fairbanks, Nome, and Sitka so far. I usually get to Juneau and Ketchkan, and they're all a long way. I don't have a favorite spot, but I like my home in Anchorage as I'm only 3 miles from the big International Airport, and 2 miles to downtown, so everything is reachable in a few minutes time.

However, I am leaving the state for a few weeks to attend some meetings in California. No, it's not to play poker, altho' as a magician, I frequent all the magic stores and clubs along the way. So I'm putting this card on the blog as a reminder of my magic hobby. I'll try to post sometime on the way.

It's been said that there are two seasons in Alaska, winter and construction. We're in the latter one now, altho' there has been some construction going on all winter. The image on your left is an almost-finished church going up on Fireweed Lane, within a mile of my condo. I drive by it daily and for a long time I wondered, like everyone else, what it was going to turn into . .. a church of some non-traditional religion. I don't plan on entering it any time soon.
Downtown is so full of building, annexing, remodeling that driving is not pleasant, and it's getting harder to park on the street anymore. That used to be one of the pleasures of Anchorage as you could just drive downtown, put a quarter in the meter and get 20 minutes of parking. Now, if you're lucky enough to find a meter in the few parking spaces left, it'll be a quarter for 12 minutes. Fewer and fewer people drive downtown unless they really need to for the Performing Arts Center programs, and Nordstroms and Penneys, who have ignored the many shopping malls in every corner in mid-town and beyond. The weather is really turning into sunny springtime, but the temp is still not quite shirtsleeve weather. But check back, and start planning your trip to Alaska, as this summer should be a great tourist season.

Friday, March 21, 2008


Here I am at my favorite blogspot and I find that yesterday's blog is floating somewhere in cyberspace . .. no matter, I just had two images on it you might enjoy -- the bagpiper from St. Patrick's day . . . yes, I know he's Scottish . . . and a polar bear which is no longer on the endangered species list. . . I'll be back . ..

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Winter Wind-Up

I think we are having an early break-up. This is not the best time to visit Alaska, as there are puddles, potholes, and mess from the winter run of dogs, and such. But you should be planning on coming here in another month or so. This summer will be a good one, as the Anchorage Bucs prepare for a super ball season, and the golf courses should be in good shape from all the snow insulation all winter. Some of my personal tub-stumping projects include:
1. Having the name of the Daily News arts blog change their name from "Artsnob"
2. Having the Municipality plunk some money into replacing the long time astroturf greens at our 9 hole Russian Jack golf course, so we can be accredited by USGA, and record scores for handicapping.
3. Voting for the least bad candiate for all levels.
4. Getting a group together for a wine cruise out of state.
5. Chairing the "Pioneers of Alaska" social night, called "Rockin' to the Fifties".
6. Getting some students ready for their piano recital.
There's more, but I'm afraid if I go on, you'll just stop reading. . . with several good parties for St. Patrick's Day coming up, and the big Easter kids party at the Petroleum Club, and American Legion, this promises to be a good week for us locals, in spite of the ground cover.

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Iditarod Races

The ceremonial start for the Iditarod Races was held on March 1, 2008, down the main street of Anchorage, and winding thruout paved roads, parks, Campbell Airstrip, overpasses, etc. This is the opportunity for those with $10,000 to spare, donate this to the Committee to ride in one of the 96 musher's sleds for the first 10 miles, strictly a photo op.
The 'real' take-off is from a small town about 60 miles north of here, called Willow. They moved the 'real' start further north to assure there would be enough snow after a few minimal years. You can follow the 1024-mile race online at their official website.
Signaling the end of Fur Rendezvous, last night was the Miners and Trappers Ball, and I hope to get some images to post so you can see some of the great costumes. I hope you've been inspired to visit Alaska by now, and you don't have to wait for summer.