Gary Sampson is in town, visiting childhood friends and showing around cousins Gary F. Sampson and Craig Sampson. Gary is the son of Vern and Gloria Morey who owned the Bamboo Room restaurant for 20 years starting in 1959. Gary remembers playing basketball in what is today the Chilkat Center auditorium.

The Haines Chamber of Commerce is still seeking volunteers for Fourth of July events, including the flag-raising at Fort Seward and youth games and activities at Tlingit Park. The Chamber also invites musicians to perform at an open mic event, 7-9 p.m. on Independence Day behind the Fort Seward tribal house. For information, call Andrew Letchworth at the Chamber, at 907-766-2202.

Dave Palmer came through town this week at the tail end of a month-long motorcycle tour of the North with five friends, including Judy Mirick of Tonasket, Wash. British Columbia highlights included visits to historic Barkerville and to Gang Ranch, once the largest ranch in North America at nearly 40,000 acres. The riders dined at a pie social at Redmen Hall in Eagle and competed in contests at the annual Dust to Dawson Classic, a motorcycle gathering in the Gold Rush town. A former Chilkat Lake landowner and city manager in Juneau, Dave now resides in Anacortes, Wash. with wife Serina Ochoa.

Julie Rae visited Haines for 10 days to see friends and attend the celebration of life for Stephanie Scott. While here Julie participated in a yoga retreat and took Sharon Svenson’s glass mosaic class. Julie lives on a canal in Eustis, Fla. with her husband Michael Smith. Black bears, panthers, armadillos, alligators, and bald eagles frequent the Trout Lake Nature Preserve next door, Julie said.

Katie Harrop, her boys Slade and Gunner, mom Kate Pace, and brother Johnathan Harrop visited town this week to prepare their home for sale. Katie teaches fourth-grade math at Hidden Cove Esteem Academy in San Antonio, Texas, and lives in Divine. Kate and her husband Jay Pace live in nearby Bigfoot with their teacup Chihuahua Smokey. John came down from Fairbanks with son Kevin Harrop, the oldest of his three children. The family enjoyed outings to Chilkoot and Battery Point. Friends can keep up with Kate at 1529 State Highway 173, Bigfoot, Texas 78005.

John Edward Redden and Lindsey Hanks of Anchorage visited Ryan Laine last weekend, including boosting Ryan’s team in the Kluane bike relay. Lindsey, a hairstylist and shop owner in Anchorage, rode legs three and six of the relay. Redden is an Anchorage attorney. The three friends and Tracey Harmon are planning to attend Chicago’s Riot Fest, a punk music festival, in September.

Jessie Krebs arrived in town early this week for a 10-day visit with parents Bob and Lisa Krebs. Jessie, who attended elementary school in Haines, is an aerialist and sword-swallower who works seven shows daily for the Coney Island Circus Sideshow in New York City. Besides swallowing a glowing sword, Jessie performs on a bed of nails and does tricks with fire. Bob and Lisa are former Haines School teachers now teaching at a school in southern India.

Residents Trevor and Larissa Barrett and their six-month-old son Samuel climbed Mount Ripinsky with visiting friends Jake and Alyssa Centrella. Samuel was happy to be carried in a backpack the whole way. The group had sunny, warm weather and enjoyed spectacular views from the summit.

Jennifer Bird finished a two-week visit on Wednesday. She stayed with Thom Ely and Tom Faverty and spent time hiking trails around town, seeing friends at the Fisherman’s Barbecue, and touring the Jilkaat Kwaan Heritage Center. “Klukwan blew me away. It’s so nice to see that dream come true,” she said. Bird lived here from 1986-97, working as community education director at the Haines School. She lives on a 140-acre organic farming collective in Davenport, Calif. with husband Ian Alper and son Milo.

Wildlife photographer Tom Ganner is serving his second year as a campground host at Chilkoot Lake State Campground. One of only a few residents ever to serve as a host, Tom lives in his RV at the parks, keeps restrooms clean, and assists campers as needed. As of Tuesday, only three sockeyes passed the Chilkoot River weir but anglers were catching Dolly Varden in the river, he said.

Pat Jamieson arrived on a cruise ship last week hoping to see five carousel horses that his company, Brass Ring Ventures, restored for the Southeast Alaska State Fair in the late 1990s. He wasn’t disappointed. “We were thrilled to see that although most of the animals had been painted over the years, we could still see evidence of our restoration on a couple of them,” Pat wrote to the Haines Visitor’s center.

Ron Jackson and Diane La Course are celebrating their 50th wedding anniversary 5 p.m. on July 24 at Chilkat Inlet Retreat. Friends are invited and can bring a potluck dish and beverage of their choice as well as a musical instrument if they want to jam with the band. No gifts, please.

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