August musings

August, the last of the summer months; even though the fireweed is starting to bloom and the leaves are slowly turning, the months’ meaning of grandeur and magnificence holds true.

The month of August doesn’t have any holidays, but that’s not to say thee isn’t any fun.

August 3–5 is the Funny River Festival. This is presented by the Funny River Community Association and happens 13 miles down Funny River Road. This year marks at least the 25th annual event. There will be a golf tournament, card tournaments, games, cake walk, a 5K ad family fun run, halibut and brisket dinner, bingo and the famous quilt raffle. This is sure to be a fund weekend for the entire family.

August 3–5 is Salmonfest Alaska occurring in the Kenai Peninsula Fairgrounds in Ninilchik, Alaska. The Purpose is to emphasize and celebrate how important it is to connect all Alaskans to the fish and the waters that provide this wonderful resource. There will be music, food, fish and love.

August3–11 is the Kenai Peninsula Orchestra Summer Music Festival. Musicians from all over are invited to join an enthusiastic, friendly, community orchestra for two weeks of music making in one of the most pristine settings, that being Homer, Alaska. The 10th is the Homer Gala Performance and the 11th is the Kenai Gala Performance.

August 17–19 is the Kenai Peninsula Fair in Ninilchik, Alaska. This has been happening for other 65 years. There will be live music, pig races, western-style rodeo with bull riding, the Backwoods Girl competition, annual parade and various exhibits, this is one of the biggest celebrations on the Kenai Peninsula.

August3–11 is the Tanana Valley State Fair in Fairbanks, Alaska. This fair is the oldest in the state and was founded in 19324. It features family fun for all, including livestock, games, rides and amusement park, horse shows, arts and crafts, competitive exhibits, quilt shows, and more than 300 booths and fabulous meals. Also, enjoy a free Contra Barn dance and spectacular fireworks display to close out the last day.

August 23–September 3 is the Alaska State Fair in Palmer, Alaska. This fair started in 1936 and features record setting giant vegetables, beautiful flower gardens, concerts, of which one feature is Three Dog Night, a carnival and parade and of course a rodeo with all its events. This is sure to be a fun event for the entire family.

August 11–19 in Seward, Alaska is the 63rd Annual Silver Salmon Derby. This is one of the largest as well as oldest derbies in the state. The whole purpose is to catch the largest coho (silver) salmon for preferable a cash prize. Anglers turn in their fish daily, said fish are sold to raise funs for fish enhancement efforts and fisheries scholarship for high school graduates. Prizes range from $50,000 down to $1,000 or Chevy Silverado or Alaska Airlines roundtrip tickets for two. Also, don’t forget the mystery fish, 49th heaviest category. There is family adventure passes, kayaking, awards ceremony and a salmon bake.

Now for August trivia: August 4, 1977, the first tanker full of Prudhoe Bay oil left Valdez, Alaska.

August 13, 1967 in Fairbanks and Interior Alaska marked a time of flooding that happens approximately every 100 years.

August 18, 1992, Mount Spurr erupted.

August 26, 1958, Alaska Statehood Bill was approved. On this same date in 1970 the first solo ascent of Denali was made by Naomi Uemura. Lastly on this date, in 1976, Kiana, which is the point of farthest north, had a tornado.

August 30, 2015, Mount McKinley was renamed Denali by President Obama.

Since August is the month school starts up, remember to watch for buses and children — please be safe.

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