Columns

As a teenager, shooting hoops was a major stress reliever for the author. (Photo courtesy of Jeff Lund)

I went to the woods: The reward of risk

One of the easiest things for athletes, coaches, former athletes, former coaches and parents to say is that sports teach you about life. True, but… Continue reading

As a teenager, shooting hoops was a major stress reliever for the author. (Photo courtesy of Jeff Lund)
Donna Leigh is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (Courtesy photo)

Living and growing: A word for your year

I recently read an article by Emily Linder who wrote an article entitled “New Year, New Word” for LDS Living magazine. In her article she… Continue reading

Donna Leigh is a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. (Courtesy photo)
Palestinians sell goods next to buildings destroyed by an Israeli airstrike in Rafah, Gaza Strip, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024. An estimated 1.5 million Palestinians displaced by the war took refuge in Rafahor, which is likely Israel’s next focus in its war against Hamas. (AP Photo/Fatima Shbair)

My Turn: Palestinian residents are helpless victims in attacks made by leaders

In 1948 the United Nations gave the country of Palestine to European Jews escaping hundreds of years of pogroms, ending with the murder of six… Continue reading

Palestinians sell goods next to buildings destroyed by an Israeli airstrike in Rafah, Gaza Strip, Wednesday, Feb. 21, 2024. An estimated 1.5 million Palestinians displaced by the war took refuge in Rafahor, which is likely Israel’s next focus in its war against Hamas. (AP Photo/Fatima Shbair)
The Juneau School District administrative office, which would be closed and turned over to Juneau’s municipal government under a pending consolidation plan. (City and Borough of Juneau photo)

Opinion: Juneau School District edges closer to balanced budget, but what’s next?

After a marathon public hearing last week, the Juneau School District (JSD) Board of Education voted 5-2 to combine and close several schools. The preliminary… Continue reading

The Juneau School District administrative office, which would be closed and turned over to Juneau’s municipal government under a pending consolidation plan. (City and Borough of Juneau photo)
Brent Merten is the pastor of Christ Lutheran Church in Juneau, a member of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. (Photo courtesy of Brent Merten)

Living and Growing: The passion of Christ

As an admitted word geek I often find the origin of English words to be fascinating. Take the word “passion,” for example. It’s a common… Continue reading

Brent Merten is the pastor of Christ Lutheran Church in Juneau, a member of the Wisconsin Evangelical Lutheran Synod. (Photo courtesy of Brent Merten)
Forest Wagner visits Kanuti Hot Springs, located in Interior Alaska not far from the Arctic Circle. (Photo by Ned Rozell)

Alaska Science Forum: Alaska hot springs, far and wide

After a few hours of skiing through deep snow, Forest Wagner and I smelled a tuna sandwich. We knew we were closing in on warm… Continue reading

Forest Wagner visits Kanuti Hot Springs, located in Interior Alaska not far from the Arctic Circle. (Photo by Ned Rozell)
Students at Juneau Community Charter School play chess in a classroom. (Juneau School District photo)

Opinion: Final Draft – Civic education and the problem with standardized testing

There’s a lot of intense disagreements with the education bill that the House Majority failed to advance on Monday. One provision which got hardly any… Continue reading

Students at Juneau Community Charter School play chess in a classroom. (Juneau School District photo)
The Alaska State Capitol. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Defined benefits and economic freedom for state workers

I moved to Alaska 12 years ago. The allure of the Last Frontier to newcomers who enjoy nature, adventure and beauty is wonderful. The remoteness… Continue reading

The Alaska State Capitol. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
(City and Borough of Juneau photo)

My Turn: Figure out new possibilities from district restructuring, rather than trying to fight it

My children are 8 and 9. Both have been fortunate enough to attend Montessori Borealis since they were 3. This school year, my 9-year-old got… Continue reading

(City and Borough of Juneau photo)
Joe Geldhof is a parent of two daughters who attended public schools in Juneau and a former Juneau Assembly candidate. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)

My Turn: Focus on saving teacher jobs, not buildings or nostalgia, to fix school district crisis

The numbers are bad. Really bad. Even dire. Juneau is losing population. Our school enrollment has been shrinking for decades, even as we built new… Continue reading

Joe Geldhof is a parent of two daughters who attended public schools in Juneau and a former Juneau Assembly candidate. (Clarise Larson / Juneau Empire file photo)
Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. board members, staff and advisors meet Monday, Oct. 30, 2023, at the corporation’s headquarters in Juneau. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Risky business not the state’s business

The advice for Las Vegas gamblers is don’t bet more than you can afford to lose. It’s generally the same advice for investors: Don’t take… Continue reading

Alaska Permanent Fund Corp. board members, staff and advisors meet Monday, Oct. 30, 2023, at the corporation’s headquarters in Juneau. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
A female varied thrush pauses to look around during her foraging bout. (Photo by Helen Unruh)

On the Trails: Early signs of spring

The ground is heavily blanketed with snow. The snow berms in my driveway (and, dangerously, at some street intersections too) are still over six feet… Continue reading

A female varied thrush pauses to look around during her foraging bout. (Photo by Helen Unruh)
An overhead view of Telephone Hill in downtown Juneau. (Photo courtesy of the City and Borough of Juneau)

My Turn: Redevelop our government, not our history with Telephone Hill

At the last Committee of the Whole (COW) meeting, the Juneau Assembly decided on Option C out of four redevelopment proposals for Telephone Hill on… Continue reading

An overhead view of Telephone Hill in downtown Juneau. (Photo courtesy of the City and Borough of Juneau)
A man walks a Fairbanks street during an ice-fog episode in January 2012. (Photo by Ned Rozell)

Alaska Science Forum: Ice fog not often a part of northern life

An old friend — a character not seen in these parts for a few years — showed up last week in Fairbanks. Ice fog. Ice… Continue reading

A man walks a Fairbanks street during an ice-fog episode in January 2012. (Photo by Ned Rozell)
Joe Orsi (left) and Sam Bertoni stand next to a 3,000-plus garlic bulb harvest in Juneau in late summer of 2023. (Photo courtesy of Joe Orsi)

My Turn: Moving the needle forward for Alaskan agriculture and local food security

As a follow-up to a recent “My Turn” article in the Juneau Empire by Colin Peacock on prioritizing food security for Alaska, I would like… Continue reading

Joe Orsi (left) and Sam Bertoni stand next to a 3,000-plus garlic bulb harvest in Juneau in late summer of 2023. (Photo courtesy of Joe Orsi)
Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, speaks during a news conference on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib)

Opinion: Sullivan defends democracy abroad, but not at home

On Tuesday, Sen. Dan Sullivan uncharacteristically defied Donald Trump. He along with 21 other Republicans and almost 50 Democrats voted to pass a bill providing… Continue reading

Sen. Dan Sullivan, R-Alaska, speaks during a news conference on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2024, on Capitol Hill in Washington. (AP Photo/Mariam Zuhaib)
Fred La Plante is the pastor at the Juneau Church of the Nazarene. (Courtesy / Fred La Plante)

Living and Growing: The Christian season of Lent

This week began the Christian celebration of Lent. Lent is typically a time when people give up or abstain from something they feel controls them… Continue reading

Fred La Plante is the pastor at the Juneau Church of the Nazarene. (Courtesy / Fred La Plante)
Members of the Juneau Assembly and Juneau Board of Education, along with top administrators for the city and school district, meet jointly to discuss the district’s financial crisis on Jan. 30 at City Hall. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)

Opinion: Juneau Assembly wrestles with school district funding

During a CBJ Assembly Finance Committee meeting on Feb. 7, opinions about how to handle a sizable deficit in the Juneau School District (JSD) budget… Continue reading

Members of the Juneau Assembly and Juneau Board of Education, along with top administrators for the city and school district, meet jointly to discuss the district’s financial crisis on Jan. 30 at City Hall. (Mark Sabbatini / Juneau Empire file photo)
The Department of Fish and Game will release great adventure permission slips on Friday. The author tagged along on a hunt in 2023 and it ended up being a highlight. (Photo by Jeff Lund)

I Went to the Woods: The wait is almost over

Clarity comes on Friday. It won’t be one that really makes or breaks 2024, it’s simply some clarity. Will I go on a draw hunt?… Continue reading

The Department of Fish and Game will release great adventure permission slips on Friday. The author tagged along on a hunt in 2023 and it ended up being a highlight. (Photo by Jeff Lund)
A female white-winged crossbill contemplates a partly open spruce cone. (Photo by Helen Unruh)

On the Trails: Crossbills

Most birds have bills with tips that come together when the jaws close. But not crossbills — hence their common name. The crossed bill tips… Continue reading

A female white-winged crossbill contemplates a partly open spruce cone. (Photo by Helen Unruh)