Garden Talk with Nellie – Integrated Pest Management Technician (IPM)

UAF Cooperative Extension Service

When: Thursday, September 3rd
5:30-7:30 pm

Where: Sullivan Roadhouse Museum and gardens



• Cleaning up the garden, greenhouse, & perennial beds
• Mapping plant rotation
• Variety suggestions
• What worked in your garden and what didn’t
• Q&A
• Come share your gardening experiences

This “FREE” workshop is geared towards all gardener types – beginner to advanced. Registration (deadline 9/1/15) is required
– please contact the CES office @ 895-4215 or or stop by the extension office located in
the Jarvis Office Center. Thank you!

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Photo of the day August 27

A cow moose with twin calves in the fireweed. Notice on this calf that it is starting to lose its red coat on the top of its back. Notice the fireweed blossoms are half way up the stalk.  We all know what that means when the fireweed is done blooming.  Yep, fall is here already.  The fireweed is now gone until next summer.
Steve DuBois

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Energy Pinching

The high energy-consuming months are just ahead of us. This week I’m turning over the news column to Art Nash, the Extension energy specialist, to give us some good hints on reducing our bills this winter.

The fall season, by the looks of the fireweed and leaves turning in some areas, feels like it is here. Several inches of snow have already fallen up north — before the end of August. So, due diligence with the nice days we have left may help you conserve money on fuel and electricity expenditures this winter.

The average family Alaska family spends several thousands of dollars a year on heat and electricity. We often consider alternative ways of utilizing our wind, sunshine and water turbulence to produce energy for home consumption. But, the most bang for your buck starts with working on ways to make your home more energy efficient. Conserved energy means less dollars spent.

Start by evaluating your house or shop with an energy audit. There are three levels of audits to consider: the professional or formal audit, an informal audit with the local electric company or a do-it-yourself audit using a checklist. Extension’s “Home Electricity Audit” publication has a checklist and is available at

If you want a formal audit, you can look up a local professional auditor. Contact the Alaska Housing Finance Corp. for a list in your area at Auditors go over your home with a fine-toothed comb by utilizing software with measurements of consumption. They establish a benchmark using the standards in the AHFC rebate program as well as talk over ideas on how to increase efficiency.

Some utilities, such as Golden Valley Electric, have a local program for an informal audit. It costs around $20 and may take roughly an hour. These audits often give you ideas for improvements you can do for yourself with just a little time and diligence.

The most expensive parts of the energy bill are those that should be looked at first. For most of us, the first items are your furnace and hot water heater. Often tuning up the furnace or boiler can get you more energy from your given fuel. If these heating units are showing their age, you may consider replacing them with a more efficient and newer digitally controlled model. On-demand hot water heaters, regardless of fuel type, tend to be more efficient than large cylindrical electric ones.

Next, insulate, insulate and insulate. See where there are cracks on the exterior. Put fiberglass or blown-in cellulose in the attic or roof. And also make sure that the basement walls have adequate foam board around the walls.

Next, think about air leakage, and look by first checking for cracks around doors and windows. Caulk those holes with a non-shrinking latex or silicone material. Replace the weather stripping around your outside doors as it can be replaced for less than $15. Next, put up window film (no more than half an inch from the window) to protect from outside temperatures. Be sure to choose the type that is installed with a self-adhesive strip and can be shrunk to fit windows by using a hair dryer.

Now, take a look at those electric appliances. What kind of wattage do they use? Often your local utility has a Kill-a-Watt or similar meter that you can attach to the outlet or on the appliance to see what its pull is on power. Compare with other brands and new models, especially on big-ticket items like the refrigerator, washer, dryer, etc.

You want to see your home as an overall energy consumer, and want to bring down the kilowatt-hours it uses. Where can you trim? Where can you save? Then you can start thinking about new investments in energy-producing products for your home!

For questions, contact me at 907-474-6366 or

Roxie Rodgers Dinstel is associate director of Cooperative Extension Service, a part of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, working in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Questions or column requests can be e-mailed to her at or by calling 907-474-7201.


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AMHS Releases Winter 2015-16 Schedule

marcluiken(JUNEAU, Alaska) – The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) today announced the release of its 2015-16 winter schedule. Reservations are now available for booking at, by calling 1-800-642-0066, or visiting ferry terminal staff throughout the system.

Coinciding with release of the winter schedule, AMHS will be applying a new reservations policy for all travel initiating October 1, 2015 and thereafter. The new policy requires payment at the time of booking and includes a revised fee schedule for cancellations or changes.

The intent of the new reservations policy is to limit lost revenue due to late cancellations or no-shows. Late cancellations make it difficult for the AMHS to sell the limited space aboard ferries to other customers.

The new reservation policy includes the following cancellation or change fees (change fees apply to the reduced itinerary value):

– Cancellation/change within 24 hours of booking will result in no cancellation fee.
– Cancellation/change over 30 days prior to the day of sailing will result in a cancellation fee equal to 5% of the reserved space value.
– Cancellation/change 15 – 30 days prior to the day of sailing will result in a 10% cancellation fee of the reserved space value.
– Cancellation/change 7 – 14 days prior to the day of sailing will result in a 20% cancellation fee of the reserved space value.
– Cancellation/change 1 – 7 days prior to the day of sailing will result in a 30% cancellation fee of the reserved space value.
– Cancellation/change within 24 hours of sailing, or a no-show, will result in a 40% cancellation fee of the reserved space value.

The new reservation policy may be found online at

Jeremy Woodrow, (907) 465-8994,

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Photo of the day August 26

Red fox having lunch by Shaw Creek. Photo by Austin Sparks

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Extending the Harvest

Stretch Your Growing Season into the Fall with Season Extension Techniques and Cold-Hardy Vegetables

As short as our growing season is in Fairbanks, it’s worth thinking about how you can prolong it. You can protect your plants from frost and cold using a range of season extension techniques: frost cloth, low tunnels, cold frames or hoop houses.

Frost cloth comes in a variety of weights. You can place it either over wire hoops or directly on top of plants as a “floating” row cover. You’ll need to anchor it somehow so the wind doesn’t blow it away — boards, soil or clothespins work (if you use wire hoops). Photo by Heidi Rader

Frost cloth comes in a variety of weights. You can place it either over wire hoops or directly on top of plants as a “floating” row cover. You’ll need to anchor it somehow so the wind doesn’t blow it away — boards, soil or clothespins work (if you use wire hoops).
Photo by Heidi Rader

Frost cloth, or row cover, comes in a variety of weights — the heaviest can protect plants down to 24 degrees.

Low tunnels are constructed from metal hoops and can be covered with frost cloth or plastic.

This cold frame is made out of recycled windows, which provide greater insulation than plastic. Photo by Heidi Rader

This cold frame is made out of recycled windows, which provide greater insulation than plastic.
Photo by Heidi Rader

Cold frames can be insulated and/or heated (hot bed). You can even make a rudimentary cold frame with straw bales. If you’re willing to add heat to a cold frame (known as a hot bed) or high tunnel, you can extend the growing season even further into the winter.

Hoop houses and high tunnels are another option. They provide a little less protection than cold frames because they are usually constructed from simple structures and use a plastic covering.

If you have extra room in your greenhouse, you can plant cold-hardy vegetables in mid- to late summer, but it might be hard to take precious space from your tomatoes and cucumbers when they are at their peak and give it to the lowly corn salad (mache).

Eliot Coleman, an expert on winter gardening, says that when the average nighttime temperature is zero, in a high tunnel it will be 11 and in a cold frame it will be 14. While researching high tunnels at the UAF Agricultural and Forestry Experiment Station, Fairbanks Experiment Farm, in 2005, I found that on the day of the first fall frost the minimum temperature inside the high tunnel was 29 and outside the high tunnel it was 24.

Last year at the Fairbanks Experiment Farm weather station, the average temperature was 44 in September and 24 in October, and the lowest temperature was 21 in September and 4 below in October.

Use a season extension technique that provides enough protection to keep the temperature above 15, below which most winter greens will be barely edible. Based on temperatures recorded last year, this will be easier to do in September than October.

Choose cold-hardy crops. Claytonia and mache, both winter greens, are the hardiest of the cold hardy. Watercress, chard, baby salad greens, collards, kale, bok choi, tatsoi, arugula and various types of chicories are also cold hardy. Beets, carrots, leeks and scallions can also be harvested into the late fall.

Don’t wait until the temperatures drop to plant your late-season crops. Plant them in mid- to late summer, depending on days to maturity. Plant them early enough to give them time to establish roots and mature some, but not so early that they have already reached their peak during the regular growing season. If you wait too long to plant, their growth may slow so that they never have a chance to reach maturity before it gets too cold.

Spinach often performs better in the shoulder seasons in Interior Alaska. Long and hot days tend to promote bolting in the summer.  Photo by Heidi Rader

Spinach often performs better in the shoulder seasons in Interior Alaska. Long and hot days tend to promote bolting in the summer.
Photo by Heidi Rader

Dr. Michael Orzolek, a high tunnel specialist, says that air temperatures below 32 can slow maturation of leafy lettuces by 10 to 15 days. Baby salad greens would normally mature in 28-30 days and head lettuce would normally mature in 42-58 days.

Try these simple tricks to enjoy nutritious greens and vegetables longer this year. And, of course, these same techniques can also be used in the early spring.

Heidi Rader is a tribes Extension educator for the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service and the Tanana Chiefs Conference. She can be reached at For answers to gardening questions, contact the Tanana District Extension office at 474-1530.

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Ace Back to School by Avoiding Shams

BBB Warns of Deceptive Ads and Online Fraud

Anchorage, Alaska — August 25 , 2015 — Summer vacation may be over, but fraudsters are just getting started. Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington urges parents and students to brush up on their online safety knowledge before heading back to school.

According to the Federal Trade Commission, identity theft ranked as the number one consumer complaint last year nationwide. Cyber crooks often target unsuspecting students or parents who disclose personal information when filling out school forms, scholarships or applications. BBB advises consumers to be wary of online offers and gimmicks designed to steal a person’s identity and money.

Ace this school year by spotting these common back to school scams:

  • Phony Promotions. Steer clear of online gimmicks that promise discounted electronics or gadgets. Scammers lure in customers with too-good-to-be-true deals by having them click on links or pop-up ads. One wrong click could lead to malware on a device or direct the person to an unwanted site.
  • Spurious Scholarships. Resist the urge for free money offers. Fraudsters will offer bogus scholarships and financial aid packages to victims claiming they’ve been ‘selected’ or ‘awarded’ a scholarship. While some offers may be scams other deals end up charging students for a service that is free.
  • Deceptive Degrees. Avoid online programs that offer fast and easy high school diplomas or college degrees. Check BBB Business Reviews and read complaints. Online degrees can be costly and fake ones aren’t worth the paper they’re printed on.

To help eliminate the risk of falling victim to a scam, BBB and the FTC recommend the following safeguards before a student heads back to school.

  • Limit Kids Online Access. Teach kids what not to post online. Never include full names, addresses, and dates of birth or social security numbers on social media sites.
  • Change Passwords. Use strong passwords on smart phones, tablets and computers. Change the passwords every few weeks and be careful about leaving devices unattended in public areas like dorms or libraries.
  • Understand Student Rights. The Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act protects the privacy of student records. FERPA requires schools to notify parents and guardians about their school directory policy. It also gives you the right to opt out of the release of directory information to third parties.

Visit for business information and visit our news and events page for additional tips on to how pass this school year hassle free.

Michelle Tabler, Alaska Regional Manager: 907-644-5208 | David Quinlan, Vice President of Marketing: 206-676-4119

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Photo of the day August 25

It’s official.  Our local librarian, Joyce McCombs said fall is coming.  The evidence is seen in her yard. Beautiful fall colors, Joyce.  Thanks for sharing.

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Funeral Services for Marie Fett ~ Aug 29

Funeral services for Marie Fett will take place on Saturday, August 29, 2015 at Our Lady of Sorrows Catholic Church, Delta Junction, beginning at 11:00 AM.

Immediately after the mass, we will travel to Rest Haven Cemetery for the burial.  We will then proceed to the Sullivan Roadhouse and take a “walk” through Marie’s memories.


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Photo of the day August 24

For several summers, there has been a pair of Hairy Woodpeckers nesting in the woods somewhere near our house. I can hear them calling throughout the area but I have not been able to find their nest. Now that this year’s chicks have fledged, the parents (mainly the male) have been bringing them to our feeders throughout the day for snacks. They are feeding on peanut butter, suet, and sunflower seed chips. II had been trying to get pictures of them outside but they are pretty spooky, so I gave up and snapped a few pictures through the kitchen window of the male feeding two chicks sunflower chips.  Steve DuBois

Steve and his lovely wife, Kenna have moved to Livingston, MT. Thank you Steve for sharing your photos with the Delta News Web and for your continued friendship.  Good luck to you and Kenna in your new adventures.

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Mystery Photo Winner for Aug 17 – 23

The winner of last week’s mystery photo is Abigail Ruse

The mystery photo is the Goodyear sign in front of the old Northern Tire Store, next to the IGA complex.

We had 7 correct entries this week.

Abigail will receive a gift certificate from the Buffalo Center Drive-In, courtesy of John and Linda Sloan

Thank you for each one that submitted their guess.

Thank you John and Linda Sloan.






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DGSD Is Looking For Parent Perspectives

DGSD will be reviewing and revising four major guiding documents for the District.  These include:
• The District Strategic Plan
• District Crisis Response Plan
• School Parent Involvement Plan
• School Discipline Procedures

Each of these documents should reflect our community values and expectations so it is imperative that parents participate in the discussions and reviews that will be taking place.

The first two, the District Strategic Plan and the District Crisis Plan, will be coordinated at the District level.  Parents who are interested in participating in these reviews and discussions should contact Sharon Waldo at 895-­‐4657 ex 21 to volunteer to participate.  The District Strategic Plan looks at the state of the district right now and helps to establish overarching goals for the District in the coming three to five years.  The District Crisis Response Plan is a review of our existing plan to determine if any changes or additions need to be made.

The second two topics, Parent Involvement Plans and School Discipline will be addressed at the school building level.  Schools will be refining a school involvement plan to define specific goals and strategies to help parents promote their children’s education in cooperation with the school.  The School Discipline procedures is certainly a reflection of the community behavioral expectations and values and parents will be involved in defining those values and appropriate ways to address students who do not exhibit the desired behaviors.  Parents who wish to be involved in either of these discussions are encouraged to contact the school office where your children attend.

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DGSD Wants Your Input And Volunteers

Delta/Greely School District values parent and community input on the many committees that make decisions for the District each year.  If you would like to be involved in the decision-making processes of the District, please volunteer to participate.

The Facilities, Policy and Technology committees are currently looking for volunteers.

Committees generally meet about four times a year with some meeting once a month or more.

If you are interested in helping, please contact Sharon Waldo at the District Office. 895-4657 ext 21.

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Photo of the day August 21

Looks like the ducks are having a pool party this morning. Photo by Scott Skaleski

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Photo of the day August 20

Nancy Williams writing down the names of winners during the 10th Annual Soup at the Sullivan Roadhouse Museum Fundraiser 2015.
Photo by: Flower C. Cole

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Photo of the day August 19

Fishing at Paxson. Photo by Dwight Phillips

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ADOT&PF Recognizes National Aviation Day

marcluiken(ANCHORAGE, Alaska) –The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities encourages Alaskans to celebrate the history and development of aviation in Alaska by observing National Aviation Day on August 19th.

Over 100 years ago, aviators James and Lilly Martin demonstrated the first aircraft flight in Alaska at a Fairbanks ballpark. Hundreds of onlookers gathered to watch Martin fly over Fairbanks at an altitude of 200 feet and speeds of up to 45 miles per hour. Today, there are 8,032 pilots and 9,347 registered aircraft in Alaska.

“The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities proudly recognizes this historic day while emphasizing the importance of aviation in Alaska,” said Deputy Commissioner John Binder. “The aviation heritage of Alaska is rich and exciting. Today it provides a vital link to 82% of the communities in our state not connected to the road system.”

On this day, some schools participate in classroom activities that focus on aviation. There are websites with activities and art contests for kids. Organizations promoting aviation history year-round include the Alaska Aviation Museum in Anchorage and the Pioneer Air Museum in Fairbanks.

The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities oversees 249 airports, 11 ferries serving 35 communities, 5,619 miles of highway and 720 public facilities throughout the state of Alaska. The mission of the department is to “Keep Alaska Moving through service and infrastructure.”

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Food in Our Lives

Having just returned from a work trip that took me to two meetings, one for sustainable agriculture and the other for agricultural Extension agents, I have found myself thinking about food.

In the first meeting, there were visits to farms in Colorado that were family run, mostly organic and prosperous. In the second meeting in South Dakota, there were visits to farms in neighboring Iowa that were family run, mostly organic and prosperous. In Colorado, the farms were surrounded by mountains and urban areas. In Iowa, the farms were surrounded by many other farms that were largely producing corn and soybeans.

In Colorado, there was an excellent market nearby for the produce. In Iowa, the markets were farther away. The corn and soybeans grown on the surrounding farms in Iowa were not directly for human consumption. The corn either went for ethanol production, was used as an additive to gasoline or was fed to livestock (poultry, pigs and cows). The soybeans were mainly fed to cows. The cows and pigs were usually housed in metal buildings with big fans, and there were silos outside the buildings for storing all the grains to feed them. All the manure and urine was collected and would be spread back out on the fields.

I noticed that there was no fallow ground anywhere in Iowa; all the land was growing something, again mostly corn and soybeans. I mentioned this lack of fallow to an Extension agent from Nebraska as our bus was driving along. Her response was that land taxes were too high to leave the land idle. Then I got a lesson on land values and how expensive it was to acquire land. All those farms were tightly managed and efficiency was the key to surviving. All the farms looked identical.

That same Extension agent then gave me the talk about the danger of too much of one thing and how we are being set up for some disaster — be it disease or insect — and used the recent example of the bird flu that killed millions of chickens and turkeys in Iowa and other places this year. Amidst all that agricultural productivity, there was a sense that it was all a house of cards that could come crashing down if we do not keep up with evolving pests, a changing climate and uncertain economics.

As one of two Alaskans at the South Dakota conference, I was asked about our farms. I was able to speak to our diversity of crops and relative lack of pests, something I want to maintain. I also spoke of the opportunity that climate change is for us in Alaska and I challenged them to think of climate change in their regions in the same way.

I may have oversold the wonders of Alaska; we will see if there is a sudden influx of Midwestern farmers setting up shop here with our cheaper land, abundant water and increasingly longer growing season. If they come, they may all farm the same things in the same ways, although they will not be farming corn or soybeans. What they do decide to grow will be based on knowing they can make a living doing it. Remember, if you cannot make money farming, then your farm is not sustainable.

On a different note, the fair is upon us. Come to the Kiwanis Agricultural Hall at the Tanana Valley State Fair, Aug. 7-16, and see the best of all the produce that is grown here in Fairbanks. I am always amazed at how good the produce is this early in the season. Everyone’s crops always seem to be a couple weeks ahead of mine.

When you are looking at the displays, think about all the healthy and delicious produce you could be growing for yourself if you had the time and space. And also remember all of our crops when talking to Outside friends and family who sometimes think there are no farms in Alaska and we all live in igloos.

Steven Seefeldt is the Tanana District agriculture and horticulture agent for the Cooperative Extension Service, a part of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, working in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. He can be reached at 907-474-2423 or

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Photo of the day

Evening alpenglow shines on Institute Peak above Canwell Glacier, south of Black Rapids. Photo by Steven Miley

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Pinching Pennies ~ Cleaning

You diligently scrub and scour your home, but still someone ends up with the flu bug. Where did that come from?

I bet there are places in your home that you really don’t think about being germy — and they are. That flu bug may mean a missed day of work or a trip to the doctor, costing your hard-earned dollars. Let’s look at some forgotten places that germs love to hide.

Handbags are carried everywhere, including into the bathroom. They are stored in the floor of your car, and you bring them in and set them on the kitchen counter. A recent study showed that 20 percent of handbags had enough germs on them to make you sick. If your bag is fabric or synthetic, it is easy to wipe down the surface with an antibacterial wipe. Leather requires a bit more care, so consider using saddle soap to clean it up. Take some extra time on the handles since that seems to be the germiest place.

Look inside the bag and check out that credit card. We’ve all been in a line somewhere and put our card in our mouth while juggling purchases — not a good idea. Your hands, the clerk’s hands and germs from your purse are most likely all over it. Use a little bit of alcohol on a cloth and it will clean up quickly.

Writing pens are another easy place to pick up germs, particularly the ones on the store counter. Clean up your pens in your purse with alcohol on a cloth and use them exclusively. Avoid using those on the counter if you can.

Cell phones are another germ carrier. In a recent research project, a mobile phone had 18 times more bacteria than a toilet handle. Use a little alcohol on a microfiber cloth and shine it up. In my house we have a cordless phone that is carried and left everywhere in the house. It should be cleaned a minimum of once a month. Again, alcohol and a cotton swab will get down in all those crevices to clean it up.

In the same way that your handbags get dirty, so does your luggage. Take a damp cloth with an antibacterial cleaner and run over the surface, playing close attention to the handles. Open them up and vacuum up all the crumbs and lint.

Dishwashers and washing machines help us keep everything clean at home. Have you ever washed these household appliances? It is a good idea to occasionally clean them up as well. Run your dishwasher empty with a cup of vinegar in it. This will help break down any hard water deposits and will also help get rid of lingering odors. The washer should be run as empty loads twice, once with two cups of bleach in the wash water and once with a cup of vinegar in the wash. Clean up the surfaces with a good cleaner and you are ready to go again.

Especially when someone in the house is sick, pay attention to doorknobs. Everyone touches them, sharing their germs with everyone in the house. Run over them first with a cleaner on a wet rag to get rid of grime, then follow up with an antibacterial wipe to kill any residual germs.

This world is a germy place. Make sure you keep these commonly touched surfaces clean to avoid sickness.

roxieRoxie Rodgers Dinstel is associate director of Cooperative Extension Service, a part of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, working in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Questions or column requests can be e-mailed to her at or by calling 907-474-7201.

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Photo of the day August 17

The long awaited paving near Ft. Greely, Alaska is almost finished. Photo by Flower Cole

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Mystery Photo Winner for Aug 10 – Aug 16

The winner of last week’s mystery photo is Woodson Hicks

The mystery photo is the sign for The Rock Christian Books and Gifts

We had 9 correct entries this week.

Woodson will receive a gift certificate from the Buffalo Center Drive-In, courtesy of John and Linda Sloan


Thank you for each one that submitted their guess.

Thank you John and Linda Sloan.


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4th Annual Fun Bun Run ~ August 22

15funbunrunThis is a run/walk event for anyone that likes to get out for an occasional run or walk with other like minded folks.

It’s a 5k event that starts at Buffalo Center Drive-in at 10:00am.

There’s no fee and no t-shirt but you’ll receive a token for a $ burger and a cone for your participation.

Come on out and have some fun and exercise.


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It’s A Waste

Can you afford to throw $2,200 in the trash? According to the National Resources Defense Council, that is the average cost of the food that each American throws away every year.

It adds up to about $165 billion worth of food or about 40 percent of the food we buy to consume! That translates to about 20 pounds of food per person per month. On a worldwide scale, each year we waste almost the amount of food as the entire net food production of sub-Saharan Africa (222 million vs. 230 million tons). These are just a few of the statistics offered by the council’s study.

Another recent report by the World Resources Institute says about one-third of all food produced worldwide — worth around $1 trillion — gets lost or wasted in food production and consumption systems. In calories, this means that about one in four calories intended for consumption never actually gets eaten.

It is astounding to think that now 40 percent of our landfills, or about 60 million tons, is organic waste, the second highest component in the landfills and the largest source of methane gas emissions. According to the Food Waste Reduction Alliance, when food waste decomposes in a landfill and generates methane, the potent greenhouse gas has 21 times the global warming potential of carbon dioxide.

All these national and global statistics make me wonder about the food waste in Fairbanks. I know our local food bank captures tons of food and gives it to people in need. I also know that food banks all across the nation do the same thing and yet the statistics on food waste nationally are disturbing.

What can we do to turn the tide? Compost whenever you can. Methane isn’t produced in the same way in a compost pile as in a landfill. If one could wish, it would be great to wish for a plant here in Fairbanks where food waste could be turned into renewable energy through anaerobic digestion, where methane emissions are captured to produce biogas, heat and energy.

On a more pragmatic level, we could each take a look at personal responsibility. We buy more food than we can use and our restaurants serve more food than we can eat. I had the pleasure of dining with a friend the other night and we shared one of the orders. My husband and I don’t have an opportunity to eat out very often, but when we do, we often save some of the meal for lunch the next day.

There is actually an organization with a food waste campaign called the Think. Eat. Save. Reduce Your Foodprint. They suggest the following:
• Think. Be a smart shopper and think about what you are buying and when it will be eaten. Wasting food is often a subconscious act — become aware of how much food you throw away. Plan meals and use shopping lists.
• Eat. Become a more mindful eater. Eyes bigger than your stomach? Request smaller portions and become a leftovers guru. Bring your leftovers home from restaurants in reusable containers.
• Save. Save your food, save your money and save the environment. Donate to food banks and become a conscious consumer.

We could start thinking like great chefs — think of food as money. “Chefs do this every day in their kitchens, using culinary technique to transform ‘lowly’ ingredients into something delicious because it doesn’t make sense — economically or ecologically — to throw them out,” said Dan Barber, co-owner and executive chef at Blue Hill Farm and a leader in the sustainable food movement. “That’s the real power of good cooking, and it’s at the root of the world’s great peasant cuisines.”

If you know you are not going to be able to use something, freeze it, ferment it or dry it. It is amazing what you can dry and put on the shelf for later. Try fermenting some of those vegetables. They will last a long time fermented.  Cooperative Extension is sponsoring a lecture by fermenting guru Sandor Katz at 6 p.m. Aug. 17 in the UAF Murie Auditorium. We also have publications on drying foods and freezing them.

If you want more ideas, one of the staff scientists from the Natural Resources Defense Council will release a book soon called, “The Waste-Free Kitchen Handbook.” Might be an interesting read.

marsha_munsellMarsha Munsell is a health, home and family development program assistant for the Cooperative Extension Service, a part of the University of Alaska Fairbanks, working in cooperation with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Contact her at 907-474-5414 or

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Photo of the day August 14

Beavers near McCallum CreekScott Skaleski

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Obituary ~ Marie Julia Fett

mariefettMarie Julia Fett, 93, Delta Pioneer, entered into eternal peace at her home on Tuesday, August 4, 2015.

Marie was born to John and Martha (Simon) Koss on the family farm in Lincoln, Wisconsin. As a young woman she worked at Harold Paques store in Rio Creek, Wisconsin before meeting and marrying the love of her life, Lee M. Fett on June 27, 1940. Together they had 9 children.

In the spring of 1961, the family moved to Alaska where Marie had cousins, John & Rita Weidner. When school was out on June 10th Marie loaded up a station wagon, trailer with household belongings and six of the kids to head up the highway where Lee and two of their sons were waiting. She arrived on June 16th. The family homesteaded at Mile 1417 of the Alaska Highway. It was there her adventure began and challenges arose. Shortly after arriving the family moved into a quonset on the Richardson hwy. That winter her pioneer spirit was born with the thermometer reading 84 degrees below 0.

The summer of 1962 brought new excitement. The house on the homestead was being built and the school bus Lee came up with became her kitchen, make shift beds were set up in the house and the first Christmas was spent in the home she loved for the past 54 years.

After being raised on a farm, the idea of not having fresh eggs in Alaska inspired her and Lee to purchase some chicks to begin the farming business known as Mountain View Farms. It soon became a full-blown egg production, eventually supplying fresh eggs locally and then to the Fairbanks market. Over the years the farm grew and so did Marie’s interests.

With the beautiful Alaska summers and fast growing season, came the huge garden and greenhouse.  After all her table was always set for her large family and then whoever dropped in at mealtime. Beauty was everywhere with the flowers she loved to grow. It wasn’t unusual for strangers coming up the Alcan to pull in their driveway thinking it was a botanical garden or park of some sort.

Marie took an active roll in The Woman’s Community Club, The Alaska Pioneers; was a member of The Red Hatters; participated at the Senior Center; gave of her time as a Foster Grandparent at Delta Elementary School; was inducted into the Delta Trailblazers by the Delta High School Booster Club for her contributions into the community and schools. Some of her most enjoyable time was spent greeting those visitors at the Sullivan Roadhouse where she was always happy to volunteer.

For fun she loved bowling and traveling with the team to tournaments around Alaska and the lower 48. At 73, she was the Senior Tournament Champion of the Midnight Sun Women’s Bowling Association. She continued bowling until her mid-80’s but gave it up reluctantly.

She was a note taker; a photographer recording her life in pictures; loved poetry; music; playing card games and especially scrabble and when the right band played was ready to get up and dance.  When asked once if she had a dream to do something more in her life, she said she’d like to have a bakery. That didn’t happen, but she never stopped baking and shared her most requested “lemon bars” whenever the call came for a donation. She was an excellent cook and baker.

Marie was a very kind and gentle soul with a loving and generous heart and was always giving to others. She had lovely friends and was a dedicated friend. She was dedicated to her husband and family, but Marie’s greatest personal dedication was to God, Jesus and his Blessed Mother. She lived her life fully through joy and sorrow relying on the love of God. She was one of His finest servants. We are blessed to have known this very special lady.

Marie leaves her loving memories to be cherished by her sister, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, nieces and nephews.

Marie was preceded in death by her husband of 62 years, Lee, and her son Larry.

Funeral Services are pending and final arrangements will be published at a later date.

The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Marie Fett Memorial account set up at Mt. McKinley Bank towards the beautification project of the Sullivan Roadhouse.

Miss Me But Let Me Go
When I come to the end of the road
And the sun has set for me
I want no rites in a gloom filled room
Why cry for a soul set free?
Miss me a little- But not too long
And not with your head bowed low
Remember the love that we once shared
Miss me-But let me go
For this is a journey that we all must take
And each must go alone
It’s all part of our Father’s plan
A step on the road to home.
When you are lonely and sick at heart
Go the friends we know
And bury your sorrows in doing good deeds
Miss me-But let me go.

-Author Unknown

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August 15 ~ Sturgis Auction

randyCorner of Nistler Road and Clearwater Road at the Chuck & Joan Sturgis residence. Preview Friday evening from 4 pm – 7 pm and Saturday morning from 8 am – 10 am. Auction begins at 10 AM on Saturday August 15.

Due to circumstances beyond our control, the 40′ Connex that was consigned by a third party will not be in the auction on Saturday. We apologize for the sudden change.

Vehicles, Harley Davidson, Mobile Home, Storage Bus, Cargo Trailer, Flatbed Trailer
Hunting, Fishing and Camping Gear and Equipment
Tools and Building Supplies
Lawn and Garden
Miscellaneous Items

See Randy Peterson Auctions Website for photos and complete details

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Wild and Cultivated Berries of Alaska Class


NRM 154
1 credit
Online, 6 weeks
Starts Sept 14
No Prerequisites

– How to improve wild berry yields
– Hardy berries for farm and garden
– Commercial production
– Diseases, insects
– Traditional and Modern uses

For more Information:
Pat Holloway  –

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Photo of the day August 13

The Arctic Warbler is  a fairly drab greenish Old World warbler that has a fascinating migration from their winter range in the Southeast Asian tropics to their breeding grounds in western Alaska with the Alaska Range south of Delta Junction being about as far west as they breed. They have a fairly loud, distinctive, trilly call and are fairly easy to hear and locate. Just think, it won’t be too long before they start heading back across the Pacific to their wintering grounds in Asia
Steve DuBois

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Landfill Closed on Friday, August 14


The DOT contractor has notified the City that they will be paving the Richardson Highway in front of the Landfill on Friday, August 14.  Therefore, there will be no access to the landfill; it will be closed.

The landfill will re-open on Saturday, August 15 with regular hours of 9 am – 3 pm.

We are sorry for the inconvenience, but it is out of our control.

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Letter to the Editor

Alaska should improve its socio-political management before it is too late

Dear & Respected Your Goodness

— I visited Alaska for 5 days from August 6 to 10 where after landing at Anchorage airport  I with my family went to see tourist spots at Alyeska, Whittier, Kenai, Seward,and Denali area.

No doubt in beauty Alaska is the best part of USA but three things were lacking / worst in Alaska :-

(1)- Out of Anchorage area there was no proper mobile phone connections hence my family remained cut off from rest of the world and from my friends and other family members in other cities

(2)- Out of Anchorage area there was no proper internet connections hence my family could not use it for many of our needs

(3)- The worst part of Alaska (in these areas north and south of Anchorage) is its Public restrooms, which are so repulsive & abominable (being a variety of service latrines used by primitive people) that give scare that one may get infection if used. [To make the matter worse there were no Public restrooms for over 100 miles even from Denali National Park & Preserve area (to Anchorage main Highway) which forced my family to wonder that what people are expected by government to do if they want to respond to the call of nature]

These three factors (I am sure would have been more if I had the opportunity to see other parts and other aspects of life in Alaska), gave an unavoidable impression that Alaska is not a part of USA.

Alaskans ought to understand that for human beings beauty can not be reduced to merely the needs of animal life (though necessary and environmental-conservationists rightly agitate for its protection) but  mental / intellectual life (reflected in the requirement of powerful State and creative constructions) are sine-qua-non for human beings before they can even aspire for ultimate culmination in spiritual aspect of life

It does not require a genius of socio- political science to understand that if Alaskans  immediately do not improve their socio-political management they are bound to be left-behind in the race for modern & powerfully-progressive life.

“[Here two suggestion I may submit very humbly & with respect keeping in view that throughout history of mankind civilizations have been shaped mainly by two forces namely saints and warriors in various combinations) that (i)- The day Alaskans (being citizens of full-fledged State) will start taking the martial responsibilities of the leader of free World (USA) seriously, they will realize the self-defeating policies they have been following thus far and will automatically make course correction and (ii)- In the interest of elevating their intellectual and moral level, Alaskans should start Participatory Philanthropic Institutions (PPI) for health and education {with capital from charity (like in limited companies / corporations as shareholders) and revenue from fees from beneficiaries on no profit no loss basis} This is based on fundamental principle that whoever runs the institution of Health and Education run the country. In any democracy unless people take the responsibility to run these institutions, the democracy can never succeed and can never realize its immense potential]”

Being a Religious-leader / Politician / Academician / Media-person responsible for the well being of Alaska (and ultimately of USA), your goodness is requested to kindly express views on this highly important matter for Alaskans.

Hem Raj Jain
(Author of “Betrayal of Americanism”)
Pennington, NJ – 08534, USA

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Don’t Get Schooled by Back to School Shopping

BBB Offers 5 Cost Saving Tips for Students and Parents

Anchorage, Alaska — August 12, 2015 — As Alaska schools prepare to open their classroom doors over the next few weeks, Better Business Bureau serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington aims to help prepare students and parents on how not to break the bank with back to school shopping.

According to the National Retail Federation, back to school spending is second only to the Christmas holiday shopping season. This year, parents are expected to spend $68 billion.

Better Business Bureau offers the following advice to help families save money and shop wisely:

  • Create a budget and shopping list. It’s easy to get caught up with “wants” versus “needs” while walking through shopping mall aisles. Writing a shopping list ahead of time will help limit purchases. Having a budget will also allow consumers to put money towards items of higher priority.
  • Shop at home. Look through items from last year and see if there are any left overs that could be reused.
  • Research major purchases. Laptops, calculators and dorm furnishings come in an array of prices. Research brands and options to choose one that meets expectations and budgets. Shop from a BBB Accredited Business for peace of mind.
  • Check for educational discounts. Many computer and software companies offer discounts to students. Retail stores often have coupons and rebate offers as well.
  • Buy in bulk. Get together with other parents and split up buying items that could be used by the entire class. For example, snacks, tissues and hand sanitizers are less expensive when bought in large quantities.

For more information on back to school spending trends, head to the National Retail Federation website. Consumers can also stay up-to-date on the latest news from BBB on its News and Events page.

ABOUT BBB: For more than 100 years, Better Business Bureau has been helping people find businesses, brands and charities they can trust. BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington, founded in 1918 and serving more than 9 million consumers, is one of 113 local, independent BBBs in the United States, Canada and Mexico. In 2014, people turned to BBB serving Alaska, Oregon and Western Washington more than 5 million times for BBB Business Reviews on more than 264,000 local businesses and for Charity Reports on more than 1,200 local charities, all available for free at

Michelle Tabler, Alaska Regional Manager: 907-644-5208 |
David Quinlan, Vice President of Marketing: 206-676-4119

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Photo of the day August 12

Our Delta Fireweed outdid itself this year! Amazing to drive by this field so many times, and then one night catch sight of a misty fog settling in. Photos courtesy of Audrey Brown.

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Sullivan Roadhouse Receives A Facelift

srh_tpWeather was sunny and warm as volunteers met on Saturday, August 8, 2015 to weatherize the Sullivan Roadhouse main structure. Signs, posts, and benches were also on the list to receive a facelift as volunteers met, coffee mugs in hand and donuts at the ready.

Cans of log oil, brushes and ladders could be seen sprinkled amongst the flowers and vegetable gardens which are maintained by a small but dedicated group of volunteers from the Delta Junction area. As visitors, both local and out of state, mingled about the grounds, work continued throughout the day.

The Sullivan Roadhouse, which once sat farther north and west of its current location, was moved in 1996 by the U.S. Army as part of the Legacy Fund. Moved log-by-log utilizing Chinook helicopters, its ownership and care were assumed by the Delta Chamber of Commerce.

New logs were fashioned to replace rotted ones from the original site, but the roadhouse in its entirety was re-erected at its current location. Time and money did not allow for the logs to be chinked immediately upon its resurrection, and there is still some discussion as to when the roadhouse received its last coat of protective oil. It was agreed it had been at least 10 years, and was sorely needed.

A generous grant from Boeing allowed for Saturday’s work, and the Sullivan Roadhouse volunteers and the Delta Chamber of Commerce are grateful for the support of funds which allowed this rehabilitation to occur.

The Sullivan Roadhouse again has that deep chestnut color it once had when new. Thanks to the volunteers, Boeing, and the Delta Chamber for all their hard work. Make sure to stop by and enjoy this local treasure, preserved once again for years to come.

Article and photo by  Tracey Porreca

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AMHS Redesigns

(JUNEAU, Alaska) – The Alaska Marine Highway System (AMHS) unveiled the newly redesigned today. The redesigned website provides customers with easier access to all the information necessary to plan and book travel aboard the State of Alaska ferry system.

Upon arrival to visitors will immediately notice an updated look and feel to the site with popular links predominantly placed for quick access. Some favorite links include:

Book A Trip – which opens the AMHS booking portal
Service Notices – to access press releases and schedule changes
Vessel Tracking – to view real-time information of vessel locations and destinations
The new website was designed with customers in mind and creates a friendlier experience. The redesign includes several new and familiar features to aid in travel planning. For example, online visitors will discover:

Newly designed community pages with photos, details and a map of the service area.
Sample itineraries with photos, maps and activities in the trip idea portal.
Vessel profiles with details on the fleet from how many cars they carry to the amenities offered on board.
An Alaska Insiders section that provides travel tips from Alaska residents.
The new website is the first step toward improving the AMHS customer experience. The ferry system will unveil its new reservation system in 2016. The new system will integrate with the website and is expected to streamline the booking process for customers and AMHS staff. was rebuilt in-house by the AMHS marketing staff. The website welcomes over 1.6 million visitors each year.

The Alaska Department of Transportation and Public Facilities oversees 249 airports, 11 ferries serving 35 communities, 5,619 miles of highway and 720 public facilities throughout the state of Alaska. The mission of the department is to Keep Alaska Moving through service and infrastructure.


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Photo of the day August 11

Blossoms + Hips = Confused Rose. Photo taken August 8 at Quartz Lake.
Photo by Cindy Lou Aillaud

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Photo of the day August 10

Cow moose with two calves in a field of barley with trees behind. Taken east of Delta Junction, Alaska   Birch Leaf Photography

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Mystery Photo Winner for Aug 3 – Aug 9

The winner of last week’s mystery photo is Angela Lentz

This week the photo is the Napa ampersand sign in Auto &Truck.

We had 11 correct entries this week.

Angela will receive a gift certificate from the Buffalo Center Drive-In, courtesy of John and Linda Sloan


Thank you for each one that submitted their guess.

Thank you John and Linda Sloan.




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Obituary ~ Marie J. Fett

“Marie J. Fett resident of Delta Junction since July 1961 passed away at home on Tuesday afternoon, August 4.

Marie was 93 years young and hopefully finally at peace.

She is survived by eight of her children.”

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Photo of the day August 7

This is a great time of year to explore the wonderful historical buildings at Rika’s Roadhouse, such as the old barn with plentiful flowers and berries all about.
Photo courtesy of Audrey Brown.

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