Liam Cassidy and Tracy Wirak were married on Saturday, June 6th, just past Kelgaya Point. The bride’s sister, Lizi Wirak, served as marriage commissioner during a small evening ceremony attended by a few close friends. The couple exchanged rings made by Brittany Dunbar, the bride wore a flower crown made by Vija Pelekis, and the bouquet was made from lupine gathered from Kelgaya Point. Post ceremony, the group snacked on delicious local foods before the couple set sail on their kayaks for a night on Ayiklutu, formerly known as Seduction Point. The next morning, the couple woke to a storm, forcing a hike from the peninsula instead of the intended kayak home. “Our honeymoon is extended until next weekend so we can go get our kayaks,” Tracy Wirak said.

Christine Hansen of Haines and John Loverink of Juneau were married on Saturday, June 6th, at Turner Lake in Juneau, Alaska. The bride’s sisters Kelly Reed and Ann Klausner served as marriage commissioner and matron of honor. John Jeans served as best man. The bridal party in attendance included Teslyn Visscher, and the groom’s party was comprised of Jesse Blackwell, Billy Sarandria, Scott Bergmann, Luke Kirkham, and Andrew Hart. The bride wore a white wedding dress made by Allure Bridal, and the outdoor setting was decorated with flowers and candles. Attendees were flown to the lake in float planes, including parents Vince Hansen, Jansy Hansen, and Karen Loverink. Travelers from out of Alaska went through the mandatory two-week quarantine prior to the ceremony. Bridesmaid Joanna Hinderberger and the groom’s father Mike Loverink celebrated from afar as they were unable to attend in person. Although a big wedding was originally planned in Haines at Sacred Heart Catholic Church, details were adjusted to accommodate a smaller gathering in an outdoor setting. After the ceremony, the couple flew off in a float plane up the Taku River, and later spent the night at West Turner Lake cabin.

Library story hour, attended by parents and children across the valley by zoom, had a surprise visitor last week when Emily McMahan and her children Micah and Finn had a female bear and two cubs come into the McMahan yard. The bears joined the zoom call while host Holly Davis was teaching participants how to make a boat out of newspaper, as seen in the book Curious George Rides A Bike, which Davis had just finished reading. “The cubs were super cute and just wrestling in our yard,” McMahan said. The female has a yellow ear tag and does not seem to be deterred by people. “We got one of those airhorns to try to deter anyone who comes back.”

School staff sent principal Rene Martin off to her next adventure with a picnic at 25 M. “We’ve been so limited, it’s all been just zooming,” Martin said. “It was nice to see everybody.” Martin plans on driving out of Haines on June 20th to arrive in Michigan before starting her next job at Allegan High School in Allegan, Michigan. “I’m excited,” she said. “I’m glad to have a job before I leave.”

Bonnie Skaugrud, a first-grade teacher for over twenty years at the Haines Borough School, attended her 80th birthday party on Zoom this year. Jan McPhetres, former Haines Borough School kindergarten teacher, organized the event. In attendance were a group of former teachers, family, and friends including Sarah Maple, Colleen Bausch, Alice Morden, Ellen Larson, Diana Edwards, and Jean Smith. “It was really fun to have a zoom with people who are nearing 80,” Sam McPhetres said. “Their grandkids probably could have helped a little more. It’s the first time that all these people have seen each other in a long time.”

Dan Kendryana organized a Tlingit Park and cruise-ship dock beach cleanup last week, which was attended by approximately 15 people. “Rodney and Rhonda Hinson helped blow up the beach into a deep clean,” Kendryana said. The Hinson’s used magnets and picked up over 30 pounds of nails which were scattered throughout the beach area. “They are not just around the metal containers,” Rodney Hinson said. “Those rusty nails are very dangerous, especially to children.”