Girardot’s first memory: The Good Friday Earthquake

Dennis Girardot (left) with his brother John Reitz (right) at the Knik River bridge in Palmer. Girardot was five year old when he and his family survived the Great Alaska Earthquake of 1964. (Photo courtesy of Dennis Girardot).

Dennis Girardot lived in Sitka for 20 years. He currently resides in Juneau. While Sitka is likely the place where he made the most memories, he says his earliest memory was set in Anchorage. That was 50 years ago, but Girardot remembers the details vividly – including his brother’s birthday cake. more

Herring harvest now at 10,300 tons

After a productive opening on Sunday afternoon (3-23-14), the Sitka sac roe herring fleet is over halfway towards it harvest goal. Fishermen landed an estimate 5,000 tons in beginning at 1:30 Sunday afternoon, just 300 tons less than the harvest in last Thursday’s season opener — and a little more than the Department of Game was aiming for. The total now stands at 10,300 tons — with 6,300 tons left to go. No fishing is likely for the next two days. more

New superintendent named at Mt. Edgecumbe

Troy_J_ThayneThe state Department of Education announced on Friday (3-21-14) that the commissioner has chosen a new superintendent for Mt. Edgecumbe, the state-run boarding school in Sitka. Troy J. Thayne will take over the post on July 1. Thayne — who goes by “J” — lives in Blackfoot, Idaho. For the past three years he’s been working as a consultant for the McGraw-Hill Publishing, doing specialized solutions for struggling schools. Thayne succeeds Randy Hawk, who’s held the top job at Mt. Edgecumbe for four years. more

When disaster struck Allen took care of what he could

Bob Allen (right) was on a fishing boat near Kodak during Alaska's 1964 earthquake. Allen brother Jack (left) was a State Trooper in Anchorage.

Bob Allen is known around Southeast now for his his family shipbuilding and cruise business, Allen Marine. But five decades ago, he was fishing south of Kodiak Island far from his family when disaster struck. Allen says when you can’t take care of your own, you take care of what you can. more

Lady Braves to play for state championship

The Mt. Edgecumbe Lady Braves defeated Barrow this afternoon (Fri 3-21-14) to earn a spot in tomorrow’s championship game. The score was 42-29. Taryn White led all scorers, with 14 points for the Lady Braves. But the key to the game was defense: No player for the Lady Whalers reached double-digits, and Mt. Edgecumbe had only 3 personal fouls the entire game. The Lady Braves meet the Lady Lions from the Anchorage Christian School in Saturday’s 3A championship game, at 1:30 PM in the Sullivan Arena in Anchorage. more

Opening day herring estimate up to 5,500 tons; no fishing today

The Sitka herring fleet heads north to the season's first opener on Thursday. (Kevin Knox photo)

There was no fishing today (Fri 3-21-14) in the Sitka sac roe herring fishery, as processors worked through yesterday’s harvest. The estimated catch in Thursday’s season opener has been revised upward: Fish & Game now reports 5,500 tons were landed. Seiners reported a high-quality catch, but said price remains a concern. more

Seiners land 4K tons in herring season opener

Seiners in Starrigavan Bay during the first opening of Sitka's 2014 sac roe herring fishery. (KCAW photo/Rachel Waldholz)

The Alaska Department of Fish & Game declared the Sitka Sound sac roe herring fishery open at 1:45 p.m Thursday. The fishing area covered much of Starrigavan and Katlian bays, north of Sitka. The opening lasted two hours and thirty-five minutes, closing at 4:20 p.m. If sold at last year’s price, today’s catch would be worth about $2.4-million to fishermen at the docks. more

Lady Braves advance, Sitka boys lose in state tourney opener

The Mt. Edgecumbe Lady Braves have advanced to the second round of the state 3A tournament in Anchorage. The Mt. Edgecumbe girls defeated Nikiski Thursday afternoon, 49-39. Things did not go as well for the Sitka Wolves. The Sitka boys lost their opening game, 41 – 59, to the Grace Christian Grizzlies. more

Sitka guidebook charts course for Fish-to-Schools programs

According to SCS, participation in school lunch at Keet Gooshi Heen increased on days when local fish is served.

Sitka’s Fish-to-Schools program will be easier to reproduce in other communities, thanks to a new handbook from the Sitka Conservation Society. A Guide to Serving Local Fish in School Cafeterias was published online last week (3-14-14) by the Society. It contains everything someone needs to know to navigate the sometimes-choppy waters to get locally-caught seafood onto public school menus. more

Seiners worried by weak herring market

Fishermen and processors listened to an update on the herring fishery from the ADF&G on Wednesday, March 19.

Sitka’s lucrative herring fishery goes on two-hour notice as of 8 a.m. Thursday (3-20-14). That means fishing could start as soon as Thursday morning, depending on whether test samples taken by the Alaska Department of Fish & Game find a high enough … more