Chilkat Valley News - Serving Haines and Klukwan, Alaska since 1966


Event will celebrate, tour Chilkat Center


A new “friends” group aimed at promoting the Chilkat Center will hold “Celebrate the Center,” an evening of events at the Haines Borough’s performing arts hall starting 6:30 p.m. Friday, July 13.

The evening will include wine, beer and hors d’oeuvres, tours of the building and a revue in the auditorium featuring local acts and a short play, said organizer Annette Smith. Cost is $20.

“We’re trying to get people to understand the center is a versatile facility. There’s something for everybody there. The building has been used for conventions, exercise and health programs, shows, birthdays, wedding and funerals, just about anything you can think of,” Smith said.

Tours will showcase the building’s amenities, including a kitchen, dance studio, lobby and auditorium. The building also houses public radio station KHNS. “There are a lot of people who haven’t been around the center or thought about what the rooms would fulfill for them,” Smith said.

The Foundation for the Chilkat Center for the Arts, a non-profit that briefly managed the building about 15 years ago, has been revived as a “friends” group, Smith said. It will advocate for the center, raise funds and seek grants for continued improvement of the building.

Early goals may include upgrading the theater’s sound and lights. “We also plan to help the borough with some of the things they might be looking for.”

Group members recently trimmed hedges at the center and replanted sidewalk medians in front of the center with rose bushes, strawberries, lilies and irises.

Some of the acts in the July 13 revue will include the Haines Women’s A Capella Choir, a jujutsu demonstration, singing by Cathy Pashigian and a performance of “April Showers,” a short play, Smith said.

Those interested in joining the foundation may do so at the event, Smith said. For more information, contact Smith at 766-2708.