Sitka Sound Science Center announces more guided tide pool walks in July

The Sitka Sound Science Center is excited to announce two more summer Guided Tide Pool Walks in July. There will be two walks this week, at 8:30 a.m. on Monday, July 6, and at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, July 7.

Join SSSC Aquarium Manager Sandy McClung for a morning of fun tide pool exploration. We will meet in front of the Mill Building, and after a brief intertidal overview, participants will head out to Sage Beach (adjacent to the Science Center) to look for the amazing animals that call the intertidal zone home. Walk will last approximately one hour. Due to COVID-19, we are asking all participants older than the age of 5 years old to wear a face covering, and to maintain social distancing.

The cost is $10/adults, $5/kids (ages 3-12), space is limited, and pre-registration is required. Identification cards are provided. To book your spot, visit www.sitkascience.org and click Book Now. For more information, contact Sandy at 747-8878, Ext. 16, or smcclung@sitkascience.org.

Sitka Sound Science Center announces more guided tide pool walks in June

The Sitka Sound Science Center is excited to announce two more summer Guided Tide Pool Walks in June. There will be two walks this week, at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, June 23, and at 9:30 a.m. on Wednesday, June 24.

Join SSSC Aquarium Manager Sandy McClung for a morning of fun tide pool exploration. We will meet in front of the Mill Building, and after a brief intertidal overview, participants will head out to Sage Beach (adjacent to the Science Center) to look for the amazing animals that call the intertidal zone home. Walk will last approximately one hour. Due to COVID-19, we are asking all participants older than the age of 5 years old to wear a face covering, and to maintain social distancing.

The cost is $10/adults, $5/kids (ages 3-12), space is limited, and pre-registration is required. Identification cards are provided. To book your spot, visit www.sitkascience.org and click Book Now. For more information, contact Sandy at 747-8878, Ext. 16, or smcclung@sitkascience.org.

Sitka Sound Science Center brings back guided tide pool walks this week

The Sitka Sound Science Center is excited to bring back our summer Guided Tide Pool Walks. There will be two walks this week, at 9:30 a.m. on Monday, June 8, and at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, June 9.

Join SSSC Aquarium Manager Sandy McClung for a morning of fun tide pool exploration. We will meet in front of the Mill Building, and after a brief intertidal overview, participants will head out to Sage Beach (adjacent to the Science Center) to look for the amazing animals that call the intertidal zone home. Walk will last approximately one hour. Due to COVID-19, we are asking all participants older than the age of 5 years old to wear a face covering, and to maintain social distancing.

The cost is $10/adults, $5/kids (ages 3-12), space is limited, and pre-registration is required. Identification cards are provided. To book your spot, visit www.sitkascience.org and click Book Now. For more information, contact Sandy at 747-8878, Ext. 16, or smcclung@sitkascience.org.

Sitka to host second annual Alaska Walk and Bike Conference on June 9-13

Are you looking for ways to make Alaska more walking and bicycling friendly? Sitka will host the second annual Alaska Walk and Bike Conference on June 9-13, with the theme of Walk.Bike.Roll. Creating an Equitable Transportation System For All.

While the agenda is still being finalized, but the plan is to bring in a couple of national speakers talk about walking and biking policy, as well as some Alaska and local presenters to round out the event. Our tentative national speakers are Ken McLeod, policy director of the League of American Bicyclists, and Ana Lucaci and Nicole Huguenin of Walk2Connect, a Denver-based nonprofit that has recently worked with Kodiak Walks.

The first two days will mostly be geared toward walking and the second two days will be geared toward biking. To get you out of the conference room, we hope to include group hikes, bike rides, a walk audit, a bike maintenance workshop, and other events throughout the week. Saturday features some free community events — a guided hike, a Sitka Cycling Club group bike ride, and an open house at the Salty Spoke Bike Collective. We will post a tentative agenda when it is ready.

Why is this conference in Sitka? Sitka is the only community in Alaska with both a Bicycle Friendly Community designation (Silver) and a Walk Friendly Communities designation (Bronze). This is a chance to see what works in Sitka, learn more about Walk Sitka and the Sitka Cycling Club and how they deal with some of the challenges they still face in their efforts to become more walkable and bikeable.

Prices for the Alaska Walk and Bike Conference are low — $50 for the full conference, or $30 for the two days of June 9-10 or June 11-12. This year we also will have a special half-day price for either a morning or afternoon session. There will be a couple of lunchtime events, such as lunch-and-learns, that will be open to the public.

Please use this website to register online. We accept online payments by PayPal or credit/debit cards, and if you select the invoice option there is info about where to mail your check. You can find more details about the event at http://walkbikealaska.wordpress.com. You can register at http://akwalkbikeconference.eventsmart.com (click on the event name and follow the instructions).

For more details, contact Doug Osborne at (907) 966-8674 or douglaso@searhc.org, or email akwalkbikeconference@gmail.com. We will have a limited number of travel scholarships available. To learn more and to get an application, contact Dawn Groth at dawn.groth@alaska.gov.

Sitka Sound Science Center lists guided evening tidepool beach walks for January and February

Join a Sitka Sound Science Center interpreter for an evening of intertidal exploration during two guided tidepool beach walks in January and February. The first one takes place from 7-8 p.m. on Saturday, Jan. 11, at Magic Island. The second one is from 7-8 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 9, at Sage Beach. The times vary because of the tides.

On Saturday, Jan. 11, meet at Magic Island (on Halibut Point Road, near Cascade Creek), for the hike. On Sunday, Feb. 9, meet at the science center for a brief overview of the intertidal zone and what to expect to see on Sage Beach, which is on the other side of the Sage Building construction site. There also will be a short beach etiquette discussion before the hike starts.

(UPDATE: The Sitka Sound Science Center just posted this update on its Facebook event:Hi everyone. We have switched the locations for the evening tide pool walks. Due to the enormous amount of snow we have seen the last week, the Jan. 11 event will be at Sage Beach, instead of Magic Island. We will move the Feb. 9 event to Magic Island (unless the trails are still buried in snow). Thanks for your understanding, and let us know if you have any questions.”)

The cost is $10, and headlamps and identification cards are provided. Space is limited, so pre-register today. For more information, contact SSSC aquarium outreach manager Sandy McClung at 747-8878, Ext. 16, or smcclung@sitkascience.org.

Help your kids celebrate International Walk (Or Bike) To School Day on Wednesday, Oct. 2

walk-to-school-1

WalkToSchoolDay_HomepageMapNot too long ago, most of us walked or biked to school. But now, most kids arrive at school via their parents’ cars or school buses. Wednesday, Oct. 2, is International Walk (Or Bike) To School Day, and Sitka parents and teachers are encouraged to help their schoolchildren safely walk or bike to school on this day.

In 1970, more than half of all elementary school students ages 6-11 walked to school. By 2006, only 15 percent were walking to school. Alarmed by this trend, a group called the Partnership for a Walkable America started National Walk To School Day in 1997 as a one-day event aimed at building awareness for the need for walkable communities. In 2000, the event became international when the UK and Canada (both of which had already been promoting walking to school) and the USA joined together for the first International Walk to School Day. In addition to expanding into several other countries, the dates also have expanded and October is International Walk To School Month.

“Walking or biking to school is an excellent way to add some physical activity into your day,” said Doug Osborne, a health educator with the SouthEast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC). “It can be a great way to start the day. Walking or biking can be a lot of fun. It’s also important to remember to be safe.”

WBTSD_12inch_ColorWalking or biking to school with their children is a good way for parents to catch up on what’s happening in their children’s lives. Other benefits to walking or biking to school include less traffic, cleaner air, and friendlier communities. Walking with their children is a good way for parents see if there are things along the route that can be done to improve safety, such as improving lighting, checking crosswalks and watching for aggressive pets along the route.

International Walk (Or Bike) To School Day is a great teaching tool for safety. Parents and teachers can teach the kids about road safety rules and the importance of being visible when they walk or bike alongside the roads. They also can check their kids’ clothes and backpacks to make sure they have reflective tape on them.

Why wearing white is not enough.

Reflective tape is particularly important as we enter the dark months of the winter. Students need to Be Safe, Be Seen, and reflective tape can make a big difference in their visibility. Not only are kids sometimes hard to be seen because they’re blocked by cars, but many cars in Southeast Alaska experience condensation problems during the fall and winter that make it hard to see through windshields. Reflective tape and blinking lights can make it so kids are seen hundreds of feet before they would be if they wore plain dark clothes. Parents can buy reflective tape from local sporting goods, fabric, and similar stores. Sometimes it’s available from local health organizations. The Center for Safe Alaskans (formerly known as the Alaska Injury Prevention Center) produced a YouTube video (also embedded below) that shows how reflective tape makes you easier to see, and will have some free reflective tape available starting in October 2019.

To learn more about International Walk (Or Bike) To School Day, contact your local school to see if any events are scheduled, or check with the Alaska Safe Routes To School program. The official International Walk (Or Bike) To School Day website also has a lot of information about how to set up an event for your school, including tool kits to help you arrange an event. Even if your kids don’t walk the entire way to school, you can drop them off a mile or so away and walk in with them. Many parents create walking school buses to bring several students who live in the same area to school together in one group.

Hames Center announces new season of Senior Walking Hours program starting Sept. 3

Seniors, now you can walk your way to better health and connect with friends with the next season of senior walking hours.

Join us from 10-11 a.m. on Tuesdays and Thursdays starting on Tuesday, Sept. 3, at the Hames Center for the Senior Walking Hours program, which is designed for seniors to make new friends and meet their fitness goals. This program originally launched in April 2016 and has been held annually in the fall since then. Having an indoor walking place for seniors helps prevents falls on the ice as we head toward winter.

Led by trained Hames Center instructors, this program is donation-based and open to all seniors, caregivers, and those with specialized walking needs. The Hames Center gym is handicap-accessible, so people who need to use wheelchairs, canes, and other assistive devices are welcome. Pedometers are available to track your progress while you gain strength and balance.

For more information, call 747-5080 or visit http://www.hamescenter.org/

Sitka Sound Science Center hosts guided tide pool walks in early July

Join a Sitka Sound Science Center interpreter for a morning of intertidal exploration during three guided tide pool walks in early June. The walks begin at 9 a.m. on Thursday, July 4; at 9:30 a.m. on Friday, July 5; and at 10 a.m. on Saturday, July 6. The times vary each day because of the tides.

Participants will meet at the science center for a brief overview of the intertidal zone and what we can expect to see on the beach, as well as a beach etiquette talk. After that, we will head out to the beach adjacent to the Science Center for our beach walk.

The cost is $10, and includes all day admission to the aquarium and salmon hatchery. For more information, contact SSSC aquarium outreach manager Sandy McClung at 747-8878, Ext. 16, or smcclung@sitkascience.org.

Sitka Cancer Survivors Society to host celebration walk July 14 at Path of Hope park

The Sitka Cancer Survivors Society is planning a celebration event from 1-3 p.m. on Sunday, July 14, in honor of cancer survivors and their families.

The society invites all those interested in joining them in walking through the “Path of Hope” park, celebrating with cancer survivors, their families and friends.

Come meet the board members to find out what we are all about, how we got started, and what we do to help support all those dealing with cancer. Refreshments will be served by the Sitka Emblem Club  No. 142. Come and enjoy the beautiful park, and celebrate with fellow cancer survivors and their families.

The Path of Hope Inspirational Park is located on Moller Drive, behind Sitka Community Hospital and behind the running track at Moller Field.

The Sitka Cancer Survivors Society provides support for Sitka residents undergoing cancer treatment, and survivors of cancer. Any questions, please contact Carolyn Fredrickson at 623-7028.

• 2013 SCSS Path of Hope Brochure

St. Peter’s By The Sea Episcopal Church to host 2019 summer Scripture Walks in the Park at Sitka National Historical Park

Rev. Julie Platson, the new priest in charge at St. Peter's By The Sea Episcopal Church, sprinkles holy water during a recent blessing service at St. Peter's Fellowship Farm. She and her church will lead a series of scripture walks this summer at Sitka National Historical Park.

Rev. Julie Platson, the rector in charge at St. Peter’s By The Sea Episcopal Church, sprinkles holy water during a Spring 2015 blessing service at St. Peter’s Fellowship Farm. Julie and members of her church will lead a series of scripture walks this summer at Sitka National Historical Park.

St Peter’s By The Sea Episcopal Church invites the community to join it on Wednesday evenings for its fifth summer of Scripture Walks in the Park. The group will meet at 5:30 p.m. on Wednesdays this summer, usually from June through August, at the Sitka National Historical Park Visitor’s Center.

“It was just an idea I came up with for a  summer offering. I thought it made sense to combine a casual walk with the beauty of God’s creation here in Sitka,” said Rev. Julie Platson, the rector in charge at St. Peter’s.

Also, don’t forget to get a Park Prescriptions card at the park’s visitor center to log your walks in the park, so you can have a chance to win quarterly prizes for each completed card.

For more info, please call the church at 747-3977 or email stpetersbytheseak@gmail.com.