Ten Klukwan School students and chaperones Cynthia and John McFeeters, Carson Buck and Katherine Hotch recently returned from a Juneau ski trip. The students, ranging from second to twelfth-graders, participated in morning lessons and enjoyed free time skiing in the afternoons. Senior Danielle Dallmann said learning to ski was easier than expected. The group also went ice-skating at Treadwell Ice Arena, and visited the Juneau-Douglas City Museum and the Treadwell mining ruins on Sandy Beach. Last month the school held a bake sale and a spaghetti dinner to raise about $700 for the trip. The school took a similar trip five years ago.
Bill Holton and Thom Ely spent 42 hours in the Takshanuk Mountains last week near Iron Mountain. Pilot Drake Olson dropped them off at about 4,500 feet, 15 miles northwest of Chilkoot Lake. Using ice axes and crampons, the friends climbed a few hundred feet, camped and dined on steaks. They spotted fresh wolverine, bear and lynx tracks on their 12-hour descent on backcountry skis. They emerged between Cox and Reeves homesteads on the Glory Hole Road.
Despite heavy snowfall, about 40 people attended the Marquardt family fundraiser Saturday at New Hope Fellowship church in Mosquito Lake. The family lost their home in a recent fire. The event raised $3,500, and included a silent dessert auction. Auctioneer Bill Stacy led the bidding of items, which included the Kinison family’s king salmon, a Marianne Rasmussen hat, and a M1 Garand WWII rifle, which fetched $600. Stacy and Erwin Hertz represented the American Legion and presented Luke Marquardt with a plaque and check to commemorate his heroism during the fire. Father John Marquardt shared stories about the house, which he began building 34 years ago. Hertz also led a prayer.
A group of Haines friends recently finished a 29-day rafting trip down the Grand Canyon’s Colorado River. The group included Tracy Wirak, Liam Cassidy, Eric Forster, Nathaniel Stephens, Jeffrey Moski, Lizi Wirak, Alisa Beske, Luck Dunbar, Bryan Harmon, Shaun Cornish, Jeromey Bell and Andrew Cardella. Ben Houdek of Guatemala City and Jim Martin of Wyoming also joined the group. With seven rafts, the group traveled from Lee’s Ferry to Pearce Ferry, enjoying sunny, 75-degree weather most days. They went hiking and camping and ate better than they do at home, Forster said. Food included elk burgers, chips, and curries.
Barb and Jerry Blood returned from Kauai, Hawaii, where they stayed in Poipu. There, son Matt and daughter Janie joined them with their families. The family ran into Rosalie and Reuben Loewen and children Marina and Lydia, who were vacationing with Reuben’s family. While at the beach, they also happened upon Roc and Diann Ahrens. Barb said highlights included celebrating her birthday with her children and grandchildren and seeing humpback whales, turtles and Hawaiian monk seals.
The Haines Big Brothers Big Sisters program’s annual fund drive raised about $12,500, said Haines Community Director of BBBS of Alaska Burl Sheldon. Friday’s Bowl for Kids’ Sake bowling party attracted about 50 bowlers. Bowlers enjoyed pizza and pineapple chunks. The Parts Place also sponsored a Wii bowling competition. Donations came from individuals, local businesses, and the Alaska Cruise Association. “It was absolutely fantastic,” Sheldon said. Wii bowling winners included Brooklyn DeWitt (0-8 age group), Natalie Jobbins (9-15), and Tom Heywood (adult).
Jeanne Kitayama and Paul Wheeler returned from a trip to New Zealand. Their trip included staying with former residents Cathy Donadio and Phil Tyler, who live in Kerikeri. The couple also visited with Tyler’s brother Ken. After Kitayama visited primary schools, she and Wheeler traveled north and camped. They then flew to the South Island’s Marlborough area. Highlights were swimming at beaches and watching a group of baby seals playing tug-of-war with seaweed in Golden Bay.
Leslie Evenden and Matt Whitman went on a yoga retreat in Yelapa, Mexico. Seasonal resident Sarana Miller, who lives in Berkeley, Calif., was the yoga teacher.
The Haines High School music program’s Feb. 24 lasagna dinner was fantastic, said music teacher Kristy Totten. The fundraiser attracted about 100 people, sold out after an hour, and netted $1,200. The event served to raise money for music program activities and helped cover the cost of attending last November’s all-state music festival in Anchorage. Richard Haas cooked and helped organize the event, KC O’Connor helped with drinks, and Tammy Jobbins organized dessert sales. Totten is planning a March 28 talent show to raise money for equipment.
Sue Libenson and Leo Americus returned from a three-week skiing trip in northern Japan. Libenson enjoyed the food, which she found aesthetically appealing. The couple stayed at hot spring resorts and a “very Australian” resort which she heard one customer describe as “like Bali with snow.” They also stayed with avalanche specialist Bill Glude.