By Cynthia Allen

Leonitus Norman Swanson was born at 11:15 p.m., Jan. 21, at Bartlett Regional Hospital in Juneau to parents Stephana and Kyler Swanson. Leonitus weighed 7 pounds, 11 ounces and measured 21 inches. He joins brother Jason Heine and sister Ella Swanson. Stephana is the daughter of Sandi Ryan of Colorado Springs, Colo., and Mario and Natalie Benassi of Haines. The Swansons have relocated to Haines; Kyler is a woodworker and handyman seeking work.

Joanie Wagner spent Christmas and New Year’s with her family in Hanalei, Kauai. She rented a house with her daughters and their families: Lelania and Tim Howard of Denver, and their three children; Katie and Craig Sevigny, of Anchorage, and their three children; and Alexis Alamillo. Joanie’s granddaughters Scarlette and Isabelle Alamillo also went. The family enjoyed paddle boarding, surfing and boogie boarding, snorkeling, and exploring the island. Joanie made sure Santa had the Hawaii address to deliver presents, and the family decorated a plastic palm tree.

Tod Sebens and volunteers have installed most of the new lighting and sound equipment at the Chilkat Center. Tod is still seeking a volunteer carpenter to modify the wall of the light booth. Call him at 907-321-2302. He’s also seeking a volunteer to help build sets for the upcoming play “Dancing at Lughnasa.”

Randy and Donna Zahnow are here again for two months to visit family: Josh and Katrina Zahnow and their daughters Tulsi and Atlin. They are attending the girls’ basketball games, and Donna is singing again with the Haines Women’s Choir.

Retired Haines Ferry Terminal manager Jim Warner is finishing up chemotherapy and will begin radiation treatment soon for his recently diagnosed cancer. He misses Haines and welcomes cards, care of his son, c/o James Warner, 16513 South Arrowhead Dr., Oregon City, OR 97045.

Debi Knight Kennedy has just published her first book, “Becoming Pearls.” She wrote most of the book while participating in online writing courses through The Literary Kitchen. Debi said her main proofreader is her husband, Gene Kennedy, but that she also relied on daughter Jasmine Taylor and friend Stephanie Scott.

Scott, Mandy and Lily Ramsey visited family and friends in Florida and Oregon recently. They camped in state parks in Florida, including at Indian River, where Mandy grew up. They attended a Celtic music festival in the Keys, and Mandy participated in several yoga and Zumba classes. A highlight for Lily was meeting her favorite princesses at Disney World.

Haines High School music teacher Kristy Totten will be taking six students to the annual Sitka Jazz Festival in early February: Casey BradfordZane Durr, Dylan Grimes, Neil Little, Keegan Palmieri and Dylan Palmieri will perform, accompanied by a guest band. Neil will also perform with the All-Alaska Jazz Band, and all six will participate in various workshops. It’s the second year Kristy has taken Haines students to this event.

Jerry and Diana Pyle recently traveled for three months, visiting friends and family. They stopped to see one grandchild in South Carolina and five grandchildren in Texas, and enjoyed three weeks of sunshine in Florida.

Haines High School graduate Hannah Wing is passing through town on her way back to the University of Alaska Fairbanks. She recently completed a year studying exercise science and nutrition at Deakin University in Melbourne, Australia. She says that the school is very international and that she made new friends from all over the world. She is now working toward completing her science degree, with a biology major and chemistry minor.

Jim Stanford said ski track has been set at both the Valley of the Eagles golf course and along the Chilkat River at 25 Mile. There are also good cross-country ski conditions along Chilkoot Lake Road and the adjacent campground. Snowmachiners are finding favorable conditions in the Kelsall area as well as up Sunshine Mountain, and both snowmachiners and backcountry skiers are enjoying Chilkat Pass.

Linda Palmer reports granddaughter Margarette Jones is on her way to Juneau for a three-month study of medical practitioners A Haines High School graduate, Margarette will be shadowing her uncle, nurse practitioner Matt Jones, and various other professionals to help her consider career options. She plans to attend college next fall.

A team of Haines players – with help from Juneau and Anchorage – played in Haines Junction, Y.T.’s Old-Timers hockey tournament last weekend. Haines players Tim Holm, Scott Gala, Daymond Hoffman, Greg Schlachter, Paul Nicastro, Tim Hockin and Chris Downer were joined by 1989 Haines High School grad Skoey Virg-In of Anchorage and Juneau players Joe Geldhof and Griffin McKinney. Virg-In played goalie. Hoffman, Downer and McKinney were game MVPs for the local squad. Eight teams competed. Hoffman reports new lights went up at the Southeast Alaska State Fair rink in January, making nighttime play considerably brighter. New ice was made Monday at the rink, which is open to the public.