About 90 Southeast Alaskans are making their way to Celebration 2012 by traditional canoe.
The paddlers range in age from 10 to 70 and come from Wrangell, Hydaburg, Juneau, Sitka, Kake, Angoon and Hoonah.
The Paddle to Celebration journey is expected to arrive at Juneau’s Auke Recreation area about noon on Wednesday.
Boats left from Kake on Saturday, Angoon on Sunday, and Hoonah on Monday.
Norval Nelson, on the F/V Star of the Sea, is operating one of three safety boats accompanying the canoes. He’s backing up a group from Hoonah.
“They traveled through Icy Straits and they crossed Chatham Straits into Funter Bay and reported up there and greeted the rest of the group that showed up from Angoon. They left there Sunday morning, traveled along and stayed the night in a cove called Square Cove and then Monday joined us. We were greeted by a large pod of killer whales,” Nelson says.
He says the weather and seas have mostly cooperated.
Nelson calls it a healthy, spiritual journey, which includes people of Tlingit, Haida, Aleut, Filipino and Norwegian descent.
Celebration is Southeast Alaska’s largest cultural gathering, held in Juneau every two years. It starts Thursday and runs through Saturday.
- Superior Court Judge Philip Pallenberg heard oral arguments in a lawsuit on the issue. He said he’ll try to reach a decision as quickly as he can.
- Walker said he has spoken several times with U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, whose vote could help determine the bill’s fate.
- State transportation crews are removing political campaign signs along state rights-of-way. Alaska law largely forbids signs anywhere visible from the roadway.
- The University of Alaska is offering up 400 acres of its Haines-area land for timber harvest. The timing of the university’s decision was motivated by a conversation happening at the local level. The Haines Planning Commission is considering whether to restrict resource extraction in the Mud Bay area.