Sitka Conservation Society to host its annual Wild Foods Potluck on Sunday, Nov. 13

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The Sitka Conservation Society will host its annual Wild Foods Potluck from 5-7 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 13, at Harrigan Centennial Hall.

Please bring a dish featuring ingredients that were fished, foraged, hunted, or cultivated in Southeast Alaska. Prizes will be awarded for first place in the following categories — Best Dish, Best Dessert, and Most Creative.

The event will highlight subsistence stories and the work performed by the Sitka Conservation Society over the last year. SCS members can pick up their 2017 SCS Calendars at the potluck.

The potluck is open to the entire community, especially SCS members, friends, family, and anyone else interested in learning about the Sitka Conservation Society. Come celebrate Alaska’s wild food bounty with your friends and neighbors.

Interested in volunteering at the potluck or want more information? Contact the Sitka Conservation Society at info@sitkawild.org or call 747-7509.

Sitka Spruce Tips 4-H program to hold open house on Thursday, Oct. 20, at UAS Sitka Campus

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Sitka youth ages 5-18 and their parents are invited to an open house from 4-6 p.m. on Monday, Oct. 12, at the University of Alaska Southeast Sitka Campus for the Sitka Spruce Tips 4-H program.

The Sitka Spruce Tips 4-H program offers a variety of programs for kids, including gardening, biking, photography, hiking/expeditions, healthy living, climbing, shooting sports, and environmental stewardship. The program focuses on the Alaska Way of Life, with a variety of activities common to life in Sitka.

The program is coordinated by the Sitka Conservation Society, in partnership with the Sitka District Office of the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service (which operates the Alaska 4-H program throughout the state). For more information about the Sitka Spruce Tips 4-H program, contact Jasmine Shaw of the UAF Cooperative Extension Service in Sitka at 747-9440 or jdshaw2@alaska.edu.

UAF Cooperative Extension Service to host forest and tree pest detector workshops in Sitka, Juneau

2016 First Detector Training_Southeast

Invasive pests threaten our natural areas and our community trees. The University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service is launching a program to train First Detectors to be the first line of defense against invasive pests in their communities. Help prevent new pests from joining the green alder sawfly and spruce aphid as established pests in Southeast Alaska.

Learn about:

  • What makes forests healthy
  • What makes a species invasive
  • What to look for and important resources
  • Invasive forest insects of concern in Alaska
  • How to report and submit potential invasive species findings

The Sitka training is from 6-8 p.m. on Tuesday, Aug. 23, at the Sitka Public Library. The Juneau training is from 6-8 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 24, at the Mendenhall Valley Branch Library. Both training sessions are free.

For more information, contact Jessie Moan at 907-786-6309 or mjmoan@alaska.edu.

The Garden Show returns to KCAW-Raven Radio spring programming lineup March 16

KittyLaBountyAndMollieKablerKCAWGardenShow

Kitty LaBounty and Mollie Kabler (Photo courtesy of KCAW-Raven Radio)

For 25 years, Mollie Kabler and Kitty LaBounty have taken to the KCAW-Raven Radio airwaves during the spring months to broadcast The Garden Show.

This year there’s a major change to the show, as it moves to Wednesday mornings, about 8:30-9 a.m., starting on March 16. In past years the show aired on Saturday afternoons from April through June, or longer into the summer if work schedules permit. Topics include timely tasks for gardening in Southeast Alaska, taking on-air questions, and themes around basic and more advanced gardening of vegetables, flowers, fruit, trees, etc.

Mollie and Kitty each have been gardening in Sitka for more than 25 years, and they also have significant gardening experience from their childhoods in Wisconsin (Mollie) and Oregon (Kitty). They both are certified as Master Gardeners, after completing the class series offered by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service.

To call the show with gardening questions, call 747-5877 between 8:30-9 a.m. on Wednesdays starting March 16.

• Sitka Conservation Society to host annual meeting Sunday, Feb. 28, at the Sitka Kitch

SCS Annual meeting poster 2016 PDF

The Sitka Conservation Society will highlight one of its community sustainability projects when it hosts its annual meeting and potluck (aka, the Voices of the Tongass Gathering) from 5-7 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 28, at the Sitka Kitch community rental commercial kitchen (located inside First Presbyterian Church, 505 Sawmill Creek Road).

The Sitka Kitch was a project of the 2013 Sitka Health Summit, and the project is coordinated by the Sitka Conservation Society, in partnership with the Sitka Local Foods Network. The Sitka Kitch can be rented to teach cooking and food preservation classes, by local cottage food industry entrepreneurs who need a commercial kitchen to make their products, and for large groups needing a large kitchen for a community dinner.

Join the staff and board of the Sitka Conservation Society for an evening filled with great food, conversation, and idea sharing. The Voices of the Tongass Gathering is an opportunity to bring your ideas about how to promote sustainable communities in Southeast Alaska. Let your voice be heard.
In addition to the Sitka Kitch project, the Sitka Conservation Society also coordinates the Fish to Schools program in Sitka. There also will be discussion of tiny houses, local wood projects, Tongass policy, and youth projects such as 4H.
This annual meeting is free and open to the public. For more information, call Sophie Nethercut at 747-7509 or email sophie@sitkawild.org

• UAS Sitka Campus offers ‘Flora of Southeast Alaska’ course as a hybrid

Salmonberries await picking near the entrance to Sitka National Historical Park

Salmonberries await picking near the entrance to Sitka National Historical Park

A newish biology class by University of Alaska Southeast Sitka Campus associate professor Kitty LaBounty will itself be a “hybrid”, and it’s back for its second year.

FloraOfSEAK_Poster11x17_2016The DNA of most traditional botany classes is to gather students around a table of samples and look at them in a face-to-face classroom setting. By offering Flora of Southeast Alaska as both a local and distance-delivery (eLearning) class, students from anywhere can get up to speed on how to identify the common native trees, shrubs and herbs of southeast and south central Alaska. Local students can participate in the lectures on campus, while students across Alaska can see the imagery online and hear the lectures either live or via digital recording.

Flora of Southeast Alaska is a one-credit, seven-week workshop. The focus will be on identification of common species and attaining an understanding of their place in the ecosystem of Southeast Alaska. Students will discover how these plants interact with other plants and animals, and how humans use these plants for food, fuel, medicine, or simply enjoyment.

In addition to illustrated weekly lectures, there will be written exercises and “check for understanding” activities. The class is available to any student without prerequisites. It does not count as credit toward a biology major at UAS.

Professor LaBounty brings her lifelong passion as a gardener and scientist to this topic, along with more than 25 years experience working on plant identification for state, federal and nonprofit agencies in Alaska.

The class will meet from 5:30-7 p.m. on Thursdays from Feb. 25 to April 30 — with time off for spring break. The cost is $187 for local students and $227 for eLearning (distance) students.

For more information, contact Kitty LaBounty at UAS Sitka Campus. 747-9432. To register, call 747-7700. or toll-free, 800-478-6653.

• Sitka Seedling Farms project to host informational lunch meeting on Dec. 18

GreensInUAFHoopHouse

Farm DesignSitka Seedling Farms is an initiative to meet Sitka’s food system needs in a thought-out, comprehensive way. Many food-related initiatives have been proposed over the last several years, but most have stalled for lack of space.

Sitka Seedling Farms, which is a finalist in the Paths to Prosperity economic development contest for Southeast Alaska, will solve this problem by exploring innovative land relationships with major landowners in our community to develop the resources Sitka’s food system needs to thrive, such as production space for food entrepreneurs, community greenhouses, food storage and processing facilities and more. Sitka Seedling Farms is currently in the land exploration phase.

To learn more about this local foods systems project, there will be an informational lunch meeting from noon until 1 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 18, at the Larkspur Café. Please contact Matthew Jackson with questions or comments at 907-821-1412. Also, please feel free to sign this online letter of support to the city to help promote the project.

• Sitka Seedling Farms business plan executive summary (Fall 2015)

• Potential Sitka Seedling Farms community farm design (by Monique Anderson)

• Sitka Conservation Society to host its annual Wild Foods Potluck on Sunday, Nov. 15

Wild foods potluck poster 2015 - CRAB

The Sitka Conservation Society will host its annual Wild Foods Potluck from 5-7 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 15, at the Alaska Native Brotherhood Founders Hall (235 Katlian St.).

Please bring a dish featuring ingredients that were fished, foraged, hunted, or cultivated in Southeast Alaska. Prizes will be awarded for first place in the following categories — Best Dish, Best Dessert, and Most Creative.

The event will highlight subsistence stories and the work performed by the Sitka Conservation Society over the last year. SCS members can pick up their 2016 SCS Calendars at the potluck.

The potluck is open to SCS members, friends, family, and anyone else interested in learning about the Sitka Conservation Society. Come celebrate Alaska’s wild food bounty.

Interested in volunteering at the potluck or want more information? Contact Sophie Nethercut at sophie@sitkawild.org or call 747-7509.

• Baranof Island Brewing to host community night fundraiser May 27 for Sitka Local Foods Network

FillAGrowlerAtBIBCO

BIBCOlogoSitka’s local brewery, Baranof Island Brewing Co. (BIBCO), will host a community night fundraiser for the Sitka Local Foods Network from 4-8 p.m. on Wednesday, May 27, at the brewery’s taproom (215 Smith St.).

BIBCO hosts community nights on Wednesdays for a variety of community nonprofit organizations and worthy causes (only one group per night). The brewery donates a portion of the day’s gross sales to the cause depending on the overall sales (up to $500 gets 10 percent, $501-$1,000 gets 15 percent, and $1,001 or more gets 20 percent). The nonprofit groups are able to share information about their projects during the event.

The brewery is owned by Rick Armstrong and Suzan Hess, who started selling small batches of their beer in 2010. The brewery has grown in the few years it’s been open, and now the brew is distributed throughout Southeast Alaska and other parts of the state. On occasion they’ll source locally harvested spruce tips and other flavorings for the beer, and they make their spent grain available to local gardeners for compost (bring your own container).

The BIBCO taproom has a variety of locally brewed beer available (Halibut Point Hefeweizen, Peril Strait Pale Ale, Medvejie Stout, Silver Bay IPA, Redoubt Red Ale, Baranof  Brown Ale, seasonal and special brews, and Ben’s Brew Root Beer for the kids and non-drinkers), pizza and other food, and a selection of BIBCO swag (t-shirts, refillable growlers, glassware, beer bread mix, soap, etc.). If you can’t stay for some food and liquid refreshments (note, there is a 36-ounce limit on alcoholic drinks served at the taproom, per state law), Wednesday is a good time to refill your growlers or buy some BIBCO swag for your family and friends.

AshmosOrderingIn addition to BIBCO beer, the Ashmo’s food truck will be at the event selling a variety of local fish items (fish and chips, salmon mac and cheese, black cod tips, fish tacos, salmon tacos, etc.). Ashmo’s, owned by Ashley Moore, is one of several new food trucks/carts operating in Sitka this summer. Watch for a feature about some of the new food trucks/carts later this week.

For more information about Baranof Island Brewing Co., call 747-BREW (747-2739), stop by the brewery, go to the BIBCO website, or go to the BIBCO page on Facebook.

• The Garden Show returns to KCAW-Raven Radio spring programming lineup

KittyLaBountyAndMollieKablerKCAWGardenShow

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For more than 20 years, Mollie Kabler and Kitty LaBounty have taken to the airwaves during the spring months for The Garden Show on KCAW-Raven Radio.

The show returned to the programming lineup earlier this month and airs from 5:30-6 p.m. on Saturdays from April through June, or longer into the summer if work schedules permit. Topics include timely tasks for gardening in Southeast Alaska, taking on-air questions, and themes around basic and more advanced gardening of vegetables, flowers, fruit, etc.

Mollie and Kitty both have been gardening in Sitka for more than 25 years, and they also have gardening experience from their childhoods in Wisconsin (Mollie) and Oregon (Kitty). They both have passed the Master Gardener classes offered by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service.

To call the show with gardening questions, call 747-5877 between 5:30-6 p.m. on Saturday.