Wednesday, Sept. 22nd at 6:30pm - Island Artist Gallery Art Talks on Zoom: Fall Mushroom Colors. Zoom Meeting ID: 832 0131 1668 Passcode: 051651. Artist Pat ...
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As of 09/07/2021, Katlian St. in the 400 block is closed until further notice. The City and Borough of Sitka Fire Department, Police Department, and Public W...
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The Sitka Community Land Trust will hold its next regular meeting Monday, September 27th, 6:00-8:00pm, on Zoom. The public is encouraged to attend. The SCLT is ...
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Sitka Public Library is seeking presenters for the next Armchair Travel Series. The shows will be virtual, about 20 to 25 minutes. Help is available to put your...
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Thru the Cultural Lens Seminar Series - Ketchikan, Hydaburg, Wrangell, Petersburg, Metlakatla: A Cultural Connectedness Project for Educators and Support Staff...
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Tuesday, Sept. 14th at 6pm at Assembly Chambers – there will be a Regular Assembly Meeting. Selected agenda items are listed below. The Complete Agenda &...
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September 8, 2021 – Sitka Unified Command discusses dashboard metrics. Incident Commander Craig Warren reported concerned citizens that had contacted him reg...
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The Ḵaax̱gal.aat Elizabeth Peratrovich mural on the Marine Parking Garage in downtown Juneau is finished! The mural is 60-by-25 feet and features Peratrovich w...
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Application Deadline: Sunday, October 31, 2021, 9:59 PM - The Alaska State Council on the Arts is requesting applications to purchase visual artwork for the ...
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Kenwa Karate of Sitka registration is open for remaining class spaces. Little Dragons for ages 4-6 runs school-year only. This class meets Wednesdays begin...
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Full service electrical contractor - (907) 738-4484. Webpage: electricalservicesofalaska.com Email: Electricalsoa@gmail.com
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SITKA, September 1, 2021 – Deputy Incident Commander Rob Janik reported the case rate continued to decline which was reassuring. He said it was attributed to mi...
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The City and Borough of Sitka will accept applications for the 2021 Utility Cost Subsidization Program through October 31. Applicants meeting certain criteri...
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Veterans in Sitka are hiring personal care attendants for help with daily tasks through the VOICE program. VOICE is a Veterans Directed Home and Community Ba...
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Sitka Fine Arts Camp's Young Performers Theater is a kid-focused performing arts training program. During Fall 2021, we are excited to be delving back into the ...
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The Soupster learns of a bizarre theory.
Submitted by Lois Verbaan
“That you, Fran?” said the Soupster, squinting into the sun as a figure ran towards him.
“Yep, Soupster,” Fran replied. “Good to see you! Enjoying this amazing day?” she asked.
“Sure am!” the Soupster said, as he stood up slowly, hands on his lower back as if to pack the discs back in. “Making the most of the weather before it turns on us. Already the leaves are falling,” he lamented. “Wait, wait, though – there’s something different about you, Fran…can’t quite put my finger on it…”
“Oh, yeah” Fran said, nonchalant. “Probably the effects of my Reverse Training Program,” she declared.
“Let’s just say I’ve been extra goal-directed lately. Reverse training,” Fran said.
“So, what’s that about?” he asked.
“Well,” said Fran, “it all began a couple of weeks ago, on one of those rare blue days. So much blue that the only thing separating sea and sky was rocky islands and white surf. I was running in the 4K mountain race and didn’t even stop to admire the view. As my feet found their way up the trail, I was struck by how good I felt. And the whole race went like this. Until the end when I crossed the finish line and asked for my time.”
“And?” the Soupster prompted.
“Not good. I’d lost 15 minutes from last year,” she lamented, “which was 10 minutes slower than the one before that.”
“So that explains your false sense of awesomeness?” the Soupster chuckled.
“Eeeexactly,” Fran said. “You go slow enough, and anything can feel easy. That’s when I decided to take action and launch my Reverse Training Program. Basically, that means adjusting your training for an earlier time. Because you are training for an event that has already occurred, your expectations can be more modest,” she said, illogically.
“I see, I guess, ” the Soupster said. “Just because we can’t turn back time doesn’t mean we can’t cover our tracks — or at least tidy them up. I’ve had similar thoughts. The other day, I saw myself in the library window, looking like a tree leaning a bit too far with the wind. I went in, checked out a book on backs and decided I’ve been walking the wrong way! Who’d have thought there was so much to something we’ve been doing since age one?”
“Are you sure you haven’t just been ducking to keep the rain out of your face?”
“Maybe,” Soupster replied. “Anyway, I’m gliding now, picturing myself as a Tanzanian, maybe, carrying water on top of my head. Straight spine, shoulder blades back, chin tucked. It’s a lot to think about. I’m surprised I can get anything else done at the same time! But it helps with my vertigo, too.”
“Well, good luck with that,” said Fran.
“And, if I ever do carry a pail of water on my head, I won’t need to fill it at a well,” the Soupster said. “I’ll just walk around Our Town on a rainy day.”
“And I’ll be out there too, shaving minutes off my time in a race that I’ve already run!” Fran laughed.
“Happy reverse training!” the Soupster called out, as Fran turned and began jogging backwards down the path.
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An Op-Ed from Abigail FitzGibbon
If you have both a cat and a closed door in your home, it’s likely the former has tried to get through the latter — either by begging you with plaintive meows to open it, trying to scratch straight through the wood, or slipping through as soon as the door’s left ajar.
Some cat owners point to this behavior as evidence of a cat’s innate desire for freedom, and argue that in order to satisfy this desire, their cat needs to be allowed to roam freely — specifically, to roam the outdoors.
However, letting your cat into the outside world unsupervised is far from the best way to meet its needs. In fact, it’s often severely detrimental, both to your cat and to the world around it.
Let’s start with the latter. As a member of a domesticated species, your cat is not native to any ecosystem; cats are an invasive species in any ecosystem they enter, and as such, they carry deadly consequences with them.
One 2013 study estimates that domestic cats roaming the outdoors kill an estimated 1.3 to 4 billion birds and 6.3 to 22.3 billion mammals each year in the lower 48 alone, figures which would give Felis catus the highest death toll out of all human-related causes of bird or mammal death.
Although the majority of these kills are performed by unowned or “feral” cats, owned “outdoor/indoor” cats are still responsible for a significant portion of these deaths; keeping just one more cat indoors can save dozens of lives among your local wildlife.
Just as your cat spells trouble for more vulnerable species outdoors, the perils of the outside world — motor vehicles, larger predators or other cats looking for a fight, poisonous plants and other dangerous substances, et cetera — can put your cat at significant risk of injury, or even death.
The average lifespan of a cat who primarily spends time outdoors is estimated at just 2-5 years, compared to an indoor cat’s typical lifespan of 10-15 years.
Plus, your cat’s excursions can put you at risk of more than just dead animals on the doorstep; some of the diseases cats more commonly contract outdoors, like toxoplasmosis and rabies, can be passed on to their human owners.
It’s understandable to want your cats to have access to the benefits of the outdoors, such as fresh air, new stimuli, and big spaces to stretch their legs. However, there are better solutions than letting them outside whenever they please.
To provide them with fresh air, consider letting them explore a contained outdoor area under your supervision, like a fenced-in yard or screened porch, or training them to walk with you on a leash. Their hunting instinct and need for stimulus can be safely sated with extra playtime, which can also result in a closer bond between you and your furry friends.
With these methods and some time and patience, even cats who are used to going outdoors can learn to live happy indoor-only lives. And in the long run, those lives will likely be much longer, safer, and overall happier ones.
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On July 30, 2021, the U.S. Postal Service is releasing “Raven Story” – a new “Forever” stamp designed by Southeast Alaska Tlingit artist Rico Lanáat’ Worl.
Sitting at his computer in Sitka’s Sheldon Jackson Museum (he was artist-in-residence in mid-July), Worl shared how “Raven Story” came to be.
A few years ago, Antonio Alcala, an art director for the U.S.P.S., discovered some “Trickster Company” artwork at the National Museum of the American Indian and reached out to Worl. “Trickster Company” is the name of the family business started by Worl and his sister Crystal.
Worl chose “the ‘Box of Light’ as the foundational story that conveys basic info about Raven, a very common figure in Tlingit stories.” As a child, Worl remembers seeing the ‘Box of Daylight’ video produced by the Naa Kahídi theater, “and, of course, I read and heard the story out loud many times.”
“A time ago there was no celestial light. People lived in darkness. Raven heard of a chieftain who owned a collection of items of great light… Raven and the chieftain’s daughter had a baby raven. In that child’s youth, he loved the boxes…which held the sun, the moon, and the stars. A grandparent’s love is immeasurable. He let Raven play with the box of daylight. Raven brought the sun, the moon, and the stars to the universe.”
For Worl, the stamp “depicts a moment of climax in one of (Raven’s) heists. Raven is trying to grab as many stars as he can, some stuck in his feathers and in his hands or in his beak. Some falling around him. It’s a frazzled moment of adrenaline. Partially still in human form… as he carries the stars away. I think it’s a moment we all have experienced, the cusp of failure and accomplishment.” The artist wants “to continue people’s engagement and help them to learn.”
Raven’s Tlingit name is “yéil” – the “ei” is pronounced like “a” and to pronounce the “ell” sound, said Worl, you first shape your mouth like an “ell” and then “take your voice out and just push air through your lips.”
How was working with the U.S.P.S.? “I created some drafts and sent them to the art director, who worked with the Stamp Approval Committee and did a good job of advocating for me. Six months of drawings, sketches and back-and-forth, till we got the final design.”
Only recently has Worl “expected the title of ‘artist’. Creativity is integral to our culture. Most of my work comes out of my anthropology and design studies (U of PA) – crafting a tool for its purpose, having contact with museums and old masterworks.” Living in Juneau, Worl works closely with Sealaska Heritage Institute, whose art department he originated.
“My education helped me define a lot of the cultural issues surrounding art, for our community. We can actually go in there and create our own market.”
Lest anyone doubt Worl’s relationship with Raven, they have only to look at his right arm. Ravens frolic down its length, thanks to Dave Lang (of High Tide Tattoo Shop in Juneau).
“I credit most of my success to ‘playing’ – Raven playing in the wind on my shoulder was the first tattoo. Other Ravens coming down the arm represent me and my community, a variety of people I have learned from.”
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