No politics: Just cookies, fudge and photos at traditional open house

Marty Meyer, Lt. Gov Kevin Meyer, Rose Dunleavy and Gov. Mike Dunleavy chat with each other as they wait to greet visitors who stopped by the Governor’s Mansion for the annual Christmas open house on Tuesday in Juneau. (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)

Hundreds of people stopped by the Governor’s Mansion in Juneau on Tuesday for the annual Christmas open house.  

Before the doors opened, Gov. Mike Dunleavy talked with reporters for a few minutes. Hdidn’t answer specific questions about the upcoming budget.  

“You’re going to find out tomorrow when we roll out the budget, tomorrow is when we roll out the budget,” he said.

But he said that help may be on the way for the state’s struggling ferry system.

“They’re looking at the possibility of getting some help there with $20 million out of (the Legislative Budget and Audit Committee). So we hopefully will hear something soon on that,” he said. “This situation is being monitored and has been monitored, discussed and we’re looking at coming up with some solutions this year — long-term solutions for the marine highway system.”

Lala Jackson, 2, shakes Gov. Mike Dunleavy’s hand during the annual Christmas open house on Tuesday in Juneau. (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)

He did answer questions about the trays piled high with cookies for the crowds. According to the governor’s office, there were about 15,000 cookies and 100 pounds of fudge and chocolate candy on hand for visitors. 

“I’m not supposed to say that I tried a cookie like a chocolate chip, but I have and that’s my favorite,” he said.

Hundreds of people stopped by the Governor’s Mansion for the annual Christmas open house on Tuesday in Juneau. (Photo by Rashah McChesney/KTOO)

That set the tone for the evening. There wasn’t a lot of political talk going around. That didn’t surprise Juneau resident Becky Allison.   

“This was about my fourth one I’ve been to. The last one I went to was when Sarah Palin was in office, so its been a few years,” Allison said.

She said she doesn’t remember a lot of political talk then either. 

“She was a controversial person herself, but I didn’t hear anything the whole time, it was a good visit then too,” Allison said.

Dunleavy is expected to release his budget on Dec. 11.

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