The Haines High School cross-country team has finished its second week of practice with new coach Jordan Baumgartner. “We’ve had a really good turnout this year,” activities director Lynzee Swinton said. “Our first practice we had 20 kids.” Swinton said new physical-distancing protocols are in place, which include a pre-practice screening and temperature check. She said students have done a great job learning the routine and respecting the boundaries. “It’s helpful that it is an outdoor sport.”

Linn and Mary Asper have had a full house, as daughter Deborah Asper and her family visited from Ketchikan. “We’ve been putting out the halibut skate and picking blueberries,” said Mary Asper. “All of the Alaska things.”

Emily Files, who worked for KHNS as a reporter and news director, had a 40-second news spot on NPR’s Top of The Hour news program with a story about the Milwaukee Brewers having their opening series canceled because of positive COVID-19 testing on the opposing team. “I just happened to do that spot because I was on call when the news broke,” she said. Files now lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, and has worked for two years for the public radio station WUWM as the Education Reporter covering K-12 and higher education. “It’s going well,” Files said. “Milwaukee is beautiful in the summer.” She said she appreciates living close to family, especially during the current pandemic.

Jenna Kunze’s article “As the Arctic warms, the Inupiat adapt” was published in High Country News, a magazine which highlights indigenous issues in the American West, and The Anchorage Daily News. Kunze left Haines at the end of 2019 for two months in Utqiagvik, formerly known as Barrow. “We focused on Inupiat resiliency in the space of an ever-changing environment,” Kunze said. The article can be read online at the websites of High Country News and Anchorage Daily News.

Andrew Cardella has returned to Alaska after a trip to volunteer in a vineyard in Brighton, England, turned into a five-month quarantine. As his time in England was during the winter months when the vines were in their dormant phase, his work focused on pruning. “With pruning you cut off the old growth from the original cane,” Cardella said, explaining the process of tying down the cane and removing certain new-growth. “I left when the grapes were starting to form.” Cardella is glad to be home but said the summer in Haines feels unusually slow. “I’ve really been spending most of my time alone,” he said. “It’s strange to not be hanging out with friends.”

The last virtual summer public library programs have been posted, including the last Detective Time with Encyclopedia Brown, the last Nature Walk and Fairy Tale Theatre, and the last Ukelele Jam which featured Haines children’s librarian Holly Davis’ family performing “Stand by Me” on the Southeast Alaska State Fair stage. “It was almost eerie,” Davis said. “This beautiful Friday morning at the fair with no one there. We just climbed on the stage and sang our song anyway!” Virtual summer programs can be found on the Haines Borough Public Library webpage under “Holly’s Programs,” and on the Haines Borough Public Library’s You Tube channel. “The nice thing is, they’ll still be there for viewing even though the summer is over,” Davis said.