In this Nov. 7, 2020, photo Jaimie Sekona holds a Trump flag on the steps of the Alaska State Capitol. The former president is scheduled to speak Saturday afternoon at a rally in Anchorage. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)

In this Nov. 7, 2020, photo Jaimie Sekona holds a Trump flag on the steps of the Alaska State Capitol. The former president is scheduled to speak Saturday afternoon at a rally in Anchorage. (Peter Segall / Juneau Empire File)

Still time to trip out for Trump

Plenty of flights and rooms available for weekend rally in Anchorage — but much local interest?

Will Juneau residents making the trip to see Donald Trump in Anchorage on Saturday get to hear him announce he’s running again in 2024? Maybe not, but a “historic moment” announcement is promised.

For locals finding that pitch enticing enough to make last-minute plans, there’s plenty of flights and lodging — even if the rooms are more pricey and distant from the venue than the following weekend.

National headlines in recent days have declared the former president is planning to announce his 2024 candidacy far earlier than many Republican politicos expected, quite possibly this month and maybe even this week. So without over-hyping or underplaying matters, it’s worth noting the message by “Don Jr.” sent at 9:11 a.m. Wednesday to people registering for tickets.

“Witness a HISTORIC MOMENT!” the message trumpets. “My father’s rally is this weekend & I hear he has an announcement to make. Show support.” The message ends with a link to a contributions site.

Numerous local residents declaring themselves Trump supporters and Republican party officials interviewed Wednesday said they‘re not planning to go to the rally for various practical and political reasons. Among the local residents saying they wish they could go is Bradley Johnson, a musician and state employee, who said his budget and concerns about possible COVID-19 restrictions are among the reasons he’ll settle for watching it from here if available.

“I wish I could see the man himself. I would love it,” Johnson said. When asked how he’d spend the visit if flying to Anchorage on Friday he noted “to see the third ‘Lord of the Rings’ I stayed outside overnight and I wasn’t nearly as excited about that as I am about Donald Trump.”

Out-of-towners can easily obtain free tickets online to the Save America Rally scheduled to start at 1 p.m. Saturday at the Alaska Airlines Center on the University of Alaska Anchorage campus. A procession of guest speakers will be featured first, with Trump scheduled to speak at 4 p.m. — when he is expected to speak favorably about U.S. Senate candidate Kelly Tshibaka, U.S. House candidate Sarah Palin and Gov. Mike Dunleavy.

But actually getting into the 5,000-seat-area for the event might not be as easy since admission for free ticket holders is first-come, first-served. The official forming of the line outside begins at 6 a.m. and the doors to the arena open at 11 a.m.

Also, since there appears to be an effort among mischief makers on social media to obtain tickets they have no intention of using — hardly a first for Trump rallies — knowing how many tickets have been requested may offer little help in knowing the size of the crowd that actually shows up.

Items prohibited from the event include, aerosols, alcoholic beverages, appliances, backpacks, roller bags, suitcases, balloons, balls, banners, signs, placards, chairs, coolers, unmanned aircraft, e-cigarettes, explosives of any kind, firearms, glass, lasers, pepper spray, noisemakers, air horns, packages, poles, sticks, selfie-sticks, spray containers, structures, supports for signs, tripods, large umbrellas, weapons and other items that may pose a threat at the discretion of security screeners.

Available tickets to fly from Juneau to Anchorage on Friday and return Sunday are plentiful on multiple flights, with prices that appear in line with surrounding days. Lodging at a variety of comfort levels is also easy to find, although a TripAdvisor search Wednesday for vacancies near the arena shows the closest options are two or more miles away, and the range of prices notably above options for the following weekend.

The least expensive in-town option on TripAdvisor is a budget hotel 2 miles away for $143 a night, but options after that are almost entirely modestly to massively above $300 a night and generally more distant. For true road-trippers, the site does list the rustic Gwin’s Lodge and Roadhouse about 50 miles away in Cooper Landing for $108 a night.

Contact reporter Mark Sabbatini at

More in News

Jasmine Chavez, a crew member aboard the Quantum of the Seas cruise ship, waves to her family during a cell phone conversation after disembarking from the ship at Marine Park on May 10. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Ships in port for the week of June 15

Here’s what to expect this week.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Thursday, June 13, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

Bill Thomas, a former Republican state representative from Haines, announced Friday he is dropping out of the race for the District 3 House seat this fall. (U.S. Sustainability Alliance photo)
Bill Thomas drops out of District 3 House race, says there isn’t time for fishing and campaigning

Haines Republican cites rough start to commercial season; incumbent Andi Story now unopposed.

U.S. Rep. Mary Peltola, D-Alaska, speaks at the Alaska Democratic Party’s state convention on May 18 at Elizabeth Peratrovich Hall. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Peltola among few Democrats to vote for annual defense bill loaded with GOP ‘culture war’ amendments

Alaska congresswoman expresses confidence “poison pills” will be removed from final legislation.

A celebratory sign stands outside Goldbelt Inc.’s new building during the Alaska Native Regional Corporation’s 50th-anniversary celebration on Jan. 4. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
Medical company sues Goldbelt for at least $30M in contract dispute involving COVID-19 vaccine needles

Company says it was stuck with massive stock of useless needles due to improper specs from Goldbelt.

(Michael Penn / Juneau Empire file photo)
Police calls for Wednesday, June 12, 2024

This report contains public information from law enforcement and public safety agencies.

A yearling black bear waits for its mother to return. Most likely she won’t. This time of year juvenile bears are separated, sometimes forcibly, by their mothers as families break up during mating season. (Photo courtesy K. McGuire)
Bearing witness: Young bears get the boot from mom

With mating season for adults underway, juveniles seek out easy food sources in neighborhoods.

A chart shows COVID-19 pathogen levels at the Mendenhall wastewater treatment plant during the past three months. (Data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Wastewater Surveillance System)
Juneau seeing another increase in COVID-19 cases, but a scarcity of self-test kits

SEARHC, Juneau Drug have limited kits; other locations expect more by Saturday.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy speaks to reporters during a news conference Feb. 7. (James Brooks/Alaska Beacon)
Gov. Dunleavy picks second ex-talk radio host for lucrative fish job after first rejected

Rick Green will serve at least through Legislature’s next confirmation votes in the spring of 2025.

Most Read