Articles from the February 25, 2021 edition

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  • Petersburg at red status for COVID-19

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    Seven more residents tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday, bringing Petersburg's total active case count to 36, according to a joint press release from the Petersburg Borough and Petersburg Medical Center issued Wednesday evening. A large number of the current positive cases have been the result of community spread, but Incident Commander Karl Hagerman said the EOC hasn't been able to pinpoint any one business or location that has led to community spread of the virus. In response to the...

  • A marine road trip

    Feb 25, 2021

    A pod of orcas swims through the Wrangell Narrows Tuesday morning....

  • Report inconclusive on 2019 Guardian flight crash

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    An aviation accident report on the Guardian King Air 200 medical life flight that lost control en route to pick up a patient in Kake in January 2019 could not definitively identify the cause of the accident due to limited information available. The report was conducted by the National Transportation Safety Board. Investigators were unable to recover the entire wreckage, and the Cockpit Voice Recorder did not contain recordings from the flight, according to the report. Investigators also...

  • Yesterday's News

    Feb 25, 2021

    February 25, 1921 On Monday night the Petersburg Fire Department gave another of those delightful annual dances for which the department is justly famous. The hall was decorated appropriately with hose and fire fighting paraphernalia of all kinds. The music was even better than usual and the luncheon served at midnight was in a class by itself. While the crowd was not as late as it should have been on account of the large number of entertainments and dances given during the past several weeks, those present enjoyed themselves to the limit and d...

  • Borough assembly updates health mandates

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    The Borough Assembly updated several local health mandates and an emergency directive at an emergency meeting Tuesday in response to the expiration of the state's emergency declaration. The health mandates had previously contained language that reflected similar health mandates at the state level, but Alaska's health mandates related to COVID-19 expired Feb. 14 along with the emergency declaration. The Assembly updated the language in several of the local health mandates in order to reinstate...

  • Happy 100th Day!

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    Luke Glasow holds his 100th day of school bag of trail mix, which includes gummy bears. Kerri Curtiss' first grade class celebrated the 100th day of school by making special crowns and wearing their pajamas to school. The class also brought 100 things from home and challenged themselves to see how many words they could spell....

  • PMC expects several vaccination clinics in March

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    The Petersburg Medical Center has the potential to vaccinate residents who want but have not yet received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine on March 12, but recipients will have to commit to getting the shot, said PMC Infection Prevention and Quality Manager Liz Bacom at the COVID-19 community update on Feb. 19. She asked those who have not put their name on PMC's COVID-19 vaccine waitlist to do so before the vaccine clinic on March 12 where first doses of the vaccine will be...

  • Happy 100th Day! from Mrs.Wilkes' class

    Feb 25, 2021

    Amy Wilkes third grade class celebrated the 100th day of school on Feb. 29 by dressing up as 100-year-olds. They also created collages that feature 100 individual pieces of a particular item. Back row from left to right: Declan Olsen, Andrew Ayriss, Alex Deberry, Silas Stanton Gregor, Cedar Littleton, Hakon Eddy and Jamari Tate. Front row from left to right: Jovee Coil, Kyra Chrissley, Tori Miller, Nadia Joekay and Gillian O'Soup....

  • Editorial: It's so preventable

    Ron Loesch Publisher|Feb 25, 2021

    It should be obvious by now that no amount of peer reviewed science or proven medical knowledge is going to change the minds of those who choose to ignore common sense guidelines to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Masking, social distancing and good hygiene have all been proven to flatten the curve of infections and hospitalizations here and across the country. The fact that Petersburg has moved from a handful of positive COVID-19 tests to 36 in the past week is because the basic...

  • To the Editor

    Feb 25, 2021

    Little Norway Festival To the Editor: As we all know last year took us on a journey that we weren't expecting or even prepared for. With that, many events that we do had to be put on hold, Little Norway Festival being one of them. Here we are in 2021 still putting one foot in front of the other looking forward into what this year holds for our community regarding events. As we don't have a clear picture of what Little Norway Festival will look like this year, we are getting a jump start on...

  • DEC releases report on local water quality

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    Two sample sites in the waters around Petersburg tested above the Alaska Water Quality Standard (WQS) for fecal coliform, according to a preliminary marine water quality report on Alaska's ports and shipping lanes by the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation. Water samples were taken at six locations in the Wrangell Narrows over the course of 30 days during the summer of 2020. While fecal coliform was identified at all six locations, mean concentrations of the bacteria was above the...

  • Assembly awards bid to repair Motor Pool Shop

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    The Borough Assembly awarded a bid to Rainforest Contracting for the repairs to the Motor Pool Shop for an amount not to exceed $1,130,450 at their meeting on Monday. The borough's insurance company will only be covering repairs to the Motor Pool Shop that are related to the Aug. 2019 fire, which comes out to $1,074,800. The remaining $55,650 of the project will be funded by the borough's Property Development Fund and will be used to make repairs to the building that were identified prior to...

  • Police report

    Feb 25, 2021

    February 17— Suspicious activity was observed at locations on Reservoir Rd. and Hungerford Hill Rd. Extra patrols were requested at the three mile mark of Mitkof Highway. February 18— Authorities spoke with a victim of theft at a location on Scow Bay Loop Rd. A person was in distress at a location on N. Nordic Dr. A dangerous driver was reported near Eagles Roost. February 19— Authorities responded to a possible overdose at the corner of 4th St. and Fram St. A bicycle that had been stolen was found at a location S. 3rd St. A skiff went missing...

  • Except for Bristol Bay, Alaskans prepare for salmon season of poor to average runs to most regions

    Laine Welch|Feb 25, 2021

    Alaskans are preparing for another salmon season of poor to average runs to most regions. The big exception once again is at Bristol Bay where another massive return of more than 51 million sockeyes is expected. Managers predict that surge will produce a harvest of over 36 million reds to fishermen. Bristol Bay is home to the largest wild sockeye salmon run in the world and typically accounts for 42% of the world’s sockeye harvest. Those fish and all wild salmon compete in a tough worldwide commodities market, where Alaska salmon claims 13% o...

  • Commercial Tanner Crab effort at 4,640 pots

    Feb 25, 2021

    The Registration Area A (Southeast Alaska) Tanner crab harvest strategy establishes commercial Tanner crab fishing season length using estimated mature male biomass and the number of registered pots at the start of the fishery. As of 9:00 a.m., Wednesday, February 17, 2021, there are 58 pot vessels and 4,640 pots registered for the 2020/2021 commercial Tanner crab fishery. At the current estimated mature male biomass and effort level of 4,640 registered pots, the harvest strategy provides one...

  • S.E. commercial Dungeness closure on Feb. 28

    Feb 25, 2021

    The commercial Dungeness crab fishery in Registration Area A (Southeast) will close in Districts 1 and 2, and Section 13- B outside of the Sitka Sound Special Use Area by regulation at 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, February 28. All Dungeness crab must be landed within 24 hours of a closure [5 AAC 32.031(d)]. Vessel operators unable to meet this deadline must contact department shellfish staff (Joe Stratman: (907) 772-5238, (907) 518-0755) within the 24 hours following the closure to request...

  • Artifact Archive

    Feb 25, 2021

    The Alaska Music Trail In 1948, Russian-born pianist Maxim Shapiro had a debut and reception hosted by the Governor and Dorothy Gruening. Shapiro, impressed by Alaska's beauty and his audience's enthusiasm, desired sharing good music especially with young audiences. Dorothy Gruening appointed a committee to contact interested towns and within a short time, the Alaska Music Trail was born. Over twenty years, communities from Anchorage to Canada, including Petersburg, hosted concerts....

  • Airport testing extended to June 30

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    Greeting, screening and testing services at James A. Johnson Airport will remain in place until June 30 for intrastate, interstate and international visitors under two health mandates passed by the Borough Assembly at a special meeting on Tuesday. "It's a good way to protect the community, and it gives people a free source for the testing most of them want," said Vice Mayor Jeigh Stanton Gregor. Public health mandate #9 had been in effect prior to Tuesday's meeting, but needed to be updated to...

  • Assembly awards RFP for hydroproject repairs

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    The Borough Assembly awarded an equipment procurement contract for the Blind Slough Hydroelectric project to Gilbert Gilkes and Gordon, Ltd. for a total of $2,002,396 at their meeting Monday. Gilbert Gilkes and Gordon, Ltd., which is based out of the United Kingdom, was one of five companies that responded to Petersburg Municipal Power & Light's Request for Proposals. The company has agreed to defer the start of any work on the equipment until funding has been secured by the Borough. Utility...

  • Stock Market Game winners

    Feb 25, 2021

    Two students in Rick Brock's eighth grade exploratory class took first and second place in Alaska in a nationwide stock market game. Iris Case, right, came in first place in the state, and Kristina Barkfelt took second place. As part of the class, students studied the stock market and made investments in the online game. At the end of the first quarter of the year, all 16 students in the class cashed out their stocks. Case and Barkfelt ended up making the most out of any other participants in...

  • Active cases reach 52 Thursday afternoon

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    The total active COVID-19 case count for Petersburg has reached 52 as of Thursday afternoon, according to a joint press release from the Petersburg Borough and Petersburg Medical Center. Six new cases were reported on Thursday, but additional positive cases have been added to the overall case count for Petersburg dating back to Sunday, Feb. 21. Petersburg has now reported 52 positive cases of COVID-19, up from the 46 active cases last reported by the EOC in a press release Wednesday evening.... Full story

  • Petersburg to stay in red for another week

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    The Emergency Operations Center is maintaining Petersburg's high risk level for COVID-19 transmission for at least another seven days, as positive cases of the virus continue to be identified and residents begin to recover. The EOC will assess the status of the recent COVID-19 outbreak on March 8 to determine whether or not to extend the community's red status, according to a joint press release from the Petersburg Borough and Petersburg Medical Center. Two more cases were confirmed on Monday,... Full story

  • Active case count jumps up to 65

    Brian Varela|Feb 25, 2021

    Eleven more active cases of COVID-19 were reported in Petersburg on Tuesday, bringing the local case count up to 65, according to a joint press release from the Petersburg Borough and Petersburg Medical Center. In addition to the 11 cases reported on Tuesday, the Petersburg Emergency Operations Center identified one more positive case of COVID-19 for Monday's case count. One infected resident was also admitted into PMC Tuesday for treatment and monitoring, according to the press release. Three... Full story