…That’s how long this year’s 4th of July parade lasted – 22 minutes. I know this because I watch the parade from just behind St. Michael’s Cathedral in the “press section.” We see the parade come at us head on … Continue reading Twenty Two Minutes…
When I lived abroad, I idealized our holidays. Thanksgiving was always more thankful looking at it from abroad than it was when I got home. The Fourth of July was the same way. I have always loved this holiday more … Continue reading Glorious Fourth!
When I was a kid the fireworks show started with a puff, then a thud, then you saw a burst in the sky. You waited 10 seconds and it happened again. Then again, until the finale when they fired off … Continue reading Fireworks! July 3, 2019
After the fireworks on the 3rd, the parade, the food, the concerts comes the water fight. Traditionally the Sitka Fire Department takes on the Coast Guard. Fire trucks come from two different directions, meet in the middle and pass each … Continue reading Water Fight!
June is chamber music month in Sitka. The Sitka Summer Music Festival (SSMF) has been a feature of or town since 1974. Chamber music is everywhere, at Mean Queen Pizza, on the Sheldon Jackson Fine Arts Campus, in the Tribal … Continue reading A Town Full of Chamber Music.
You can try to shelter yourself from travel’s inconveniences but you’re never completely successful. We’re used to negotiating travel’s mine fields (sometimes literally.) We’ve done winding dusty mountain roads in third world busses, train rides with goats and chickens, and … Continue reading The Long Ride Home
Forty-nine years ago, April 22, 1970, Wisconsin Senator Gaylord Nelson a Democrat, and California Representative Pete McCloskey, a Republican, sought to harness the energy of the campus anti-war movement to bring attention to environmental issues. The impetus for the first … Continue reading Earth Day 2019, The Parade of Species
It was a tough winter for eagles. The Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center had a full house. The normal number of eagles were injured by electric wires, entangled in fishing gear and suffered from other human encounters. One immature bird fell … Continue reading Spring Eagles
We are right in the middle of an Auroral down cycle. Sunspot activity peaks every 11 years. The next peak comes sometime late 2025 or early 2026. So, if we are in the trough, why is Sitka getting so many … Continue reading This Aurora Brought to You by a Drought in the Rainforest.
For some deranged souls like me, it’s a tradition to swim, or at least dip, into the Pacific Ocean in the middle of winter. Saturday was the day. Many dippers dressed for the occasion. For instance someone dressed as a … Continue reading This is Fun. Now Get Me Outta Here! Polar Dip 2019
The room throbbed with all the energy and exuberance of a high school pep dance, and perhaps that’s what the centerpiece of the 2019 Sitka Jazz Festival was. The Kyle Athayde Dance Party, an 18 piece big band from New … Continue reading Jazz Fest ’19
“Why does Sitka have so many great sunsets?” “I don’t remember that many beautiful sunsets when I lived in Sitka.” All during January I posted sunset pictures from Sitka on Facebook and I kept getting comments like the ones above. … Continue reading January Sunset Retrospective.
The weather conspired against us. Kevin and Shannon arrived on Dec 22, on Dec 23 Brian, Liz and the kids Liam and Fiona came to Sitka. Just before they got here we had some nice weather. Once they were here, … Continue reading Welcome to the first beautiful day of 2019
Our first family whale watch was more than 35 years ago. Alice and Chuck Johnstone took us out on the Fairweather. Carolyn Servid was the deck hand and we went looking for humpback whales. Some folks considered this an odd … Continue reading Our Sitka Christmas Tradition — A Whale Watch.
I love all the holidays around the turning of the year. But Solstice had particular meaning for me. It’s the root of Christmas, the reason the early Church Fathers chose this time to celebrate the birth of the Christ. But … Continue reading Here Comes the Sun — Winter Solstice 2018
Tommy Joseph is an imaginative Tlingit carver. With my camera I documented his carving a house pole for the Interior Department two years ago. Since then he has done a canoe and a library pole for Petersburg with characters from … Continue reading It Rotates! – Tommy Joseph’s new Sculpture at the Sitka Sound Science Center
December 14 was the first real day of winter in Sitka. There was a light fall of snow and some hear frost on the branches. We had had stormy November type weather the day before but the 14th dawned with … Continue reading Winter Brings Frost and Whales
There were two different worlds, the natural sciences and everyone else. At least that’s what it seemed like when I was in college more than half a century ago. The dean organized “Two Worlds” seminars to try to bring us … Continue reading One Ocean, One World, One Health. Whale Fest 2018
Yesterday I celebrated a gray (or grey) day on the water. Overnight the weather turned and today it was bright and the light the hour before the 4:06 sunset brought out all of Sitka’s autumnal glory that ended with a … Continue reading November’s Caprice
I have posted hundreds of pictures of Sitka in the sun, with vibrant blues and greens, but we live in a rain forest and in November the seas rise. Much of the music about the region have references to gray … Continue reading Celebration for a Grey Day
Sometimes I wonder at the privilege I have living in Sitka. Two times of year are particularly wonderful. Spring brings great weather and the Music Festival as well as all the social activities that go along with that. As autumn … Continue reading Whalefest Preview
Here is the third tranche of pictures from the Alaska Day Parade. There are three tranches of photos total In past years I have been more selective but many people asked “why isn’t my group, kid or spouse, in these … Continue reading 2018 Alaska Day Parade — Tranche 3
This is the second tranche of pictures from the Alaska Day Parade. There are three tranches of photos. In past years I have been more selective but many people asked “why isn’t my group, kid or spouse, in these pictures?” … Continue reading 2018 Alaska Day Parade — Tranche 2
Today is our day. Alaska Day celebrates the transfer of Alaska from Russia to the United States 151 years ago on Castle Hill in Sitka. It’s a state holiday but for most of the state it is little more than … Continue reading Alaska Day Parade 2018