Dawson City, Yukon Friday, April 26, 2002

An eagle visits Dawson City. Photo Janice Cliff of Peabody's Photo Parlour

Feature Stories

Editorial: The Eagle Has Landed
Canadian Rangers' Sovereignty Patrol Praised
Tributes: In Remembrance of Joe Henry
Dazzling Lights on a Northern Screen
Moccasin Square Gardens: A World Premiere
A Gallant Performance at the ODD Hall
Jazz on the Wing: an ODD Experience
Seasonal Food Programs Prepare for 2002
The Great Bear Creek Hockey Saga
Sunnydale Classic 2002
Dawson Housing to Go by the Numbers
The Minute Pools
Warming Up for the Festival
Raven Night

Welcome to the April 26, 2002 edition of the online Klondike Sun, which reproduces a selection of the 32 photographs and 25 articles that were in the 24 page April 23 hard copy edition. The hard copy also contains Doug Urquhart's famous "Paws" cartoon strip, our homegrown crossword puzzle, and obviously, all the other material you won't find here. See what you're missing by not subscribing?

Seriously, we do encourage viewers of this website to consider subscribing to the Sun. It would help us financially and you would get to see everything closer to when it's actually news. About 600 people read each issue of this paper online, and we'd love to be sending out that many more papers. See our home page for subscription information.

Sorry we're a few days late getting on-line this time, but ye editor has been out of town and is playing catch-up today.

Editorial: The Eagle Has Landed

by Dan Davidson

I missed most of the great eagle adventure myself. My back lane neighbour, Rosie, tells me it sat perched in a tree in the old YOOP cemetery for hours on Thursday. She ran down to Peabody's to get some film and managed to take some pictures.

Me? I was finishing the last term paper for my third graduate course and hoping I got all the footnote citations right. So much for the intrepid reporter ...

Sometime later the bird took off and wafted who knows where, but ended up perched in the tree outside Peabody's Photo Parlour, where it still was when I went for groceries.

This is mud season. I was looking down, avoiding puddles. and probably still wouldn't have seen it except that Jesse Nichol hailed me from down the street - twice (I must be catching Art Eggleson's disease) - and pointed it out to me.

People were noticing it by then; shopkeepers wandering out to get a glimpse of the great bird in the bare tree (gee, this could be a song) and everyone wondering where the heck it came from.

I asked Janice Cliff if she'd managed to get a photograph, and Peabody's owner informed me she was "all over it." She was. The results are on the front page and we thank her kindly.

Driving home with the groceries I concluded that I wanted my own picture, too, so I grabbed a camera and headed back downtown. By this time lots more people were strolling along, looking up, and pulling out cameras of their own.

I didn't get a photo. Maybe the eagle got shy, or remembered an appointment somewhere. I was fiddling with my camera when he launched himself from the tree, swooped down Second and back again through the lane, began to circle on an up draft, rode it to a respectable height, and then soared off north over the Yukon River and away.

John Gould may be able to tell us when the last eagle landed here. I haven't seen one in my 16 years. Folks with more local time than I have can't recall one either.

Was it just tired? Was it looking for food? Will it come back? We'll probably never know, but it was neat to have it around for a while, wasn't it?

That's Dawson for you. Just when you think you've seen everything - you haven't after all.


Canadian Rangers' Sovereignty Patrol Praised

Yellowknife (April 19, 2002) -- On Tuesday 30 Rangers and 3 headquarters members of 1 Canadian Ranger Patrol Group went as far as reliable ice and good judgment could take them. On Thursday the members of the Kigliqaqvik Ranger expedition to the magnetic north pole speaking by satellite phone received the praise and thanks of the Prime Minister and Minister of National defence.

The expedition departed Resolute on April 9th and headed north over 800 km in 7 days ending on the sea ice more than 10 km north of Ellef Ringnes Island and a couple of kilometers south of a broad open stretch of arctic sea that had opened in the path of the patrol. Unable to go around or over the water and concerned that a gap might open in the ice behind them the patrol abandoned plans to stay on the ice overnight and traveled south to Cape Isachsen and established camp at midnight. At its furthest north the expedition reached only the edge of the area of the magnetic pole before being stopped by the sea.

The expedition whose chief purpose was to assert Canadian sovereignty over a seldom - visited part of the arctic has been a success despite not reaching the centre of the magnetic pole.

This fact was reinforced in two historic calls from Ottawa on Thursday. Jean Chretien and Art Eggleton called the patrol to speak with the Rangers and offer congratulations. The prime minister spoke with Warrant Officer Kevin Mulhern, Sergeant John Mitchell of Dawson City, Yukon, Sergeant Darrel Klemmer of Tulita, Northwest Territories, Sergeant Aqiatusuk and Junior Canadian Ranger Iqaluk and expressed his delight with the patrol's success.

The minister of national defense, Art Eggleton called a few minutes later to share his greetings and discuss the loss of lives suffered in Afghanistan and the loss shared by all members of the Canadian Forces wherever they are in the world. "We are happy for the Rangers and sad for our soldiers in Afghanistan." he said.

"To stand out there in the bitter cold of Isachsen and see the pleasure of the Canadian Rangers, both those who spoke on the phone and those who stood around, in knowing that what they had done was recognized by the PM and MND was quite remarkable." Said one witness to the conversations.

Colonel Kevin McLeod the Commander of Canadian Forces Northern Area arrived from Resolute in an Air Force twin otter from 440 squadron to share the moment with the patrol and offer his own praise to the most northerly members of his command.

When the Commander's twin Otter left an hour later it also medevacked Sgt. Darrell Klemmer who suffered a deep cut to his hand while preparing equipment. Sergeant Klemmer was taken to the nursing station in Resolute where he received stitches for a would that had exposed the bone. Deeply disappointed, he will remain in Resolute and assist at the base of operations there.

Beginning today the patrol will begin to make its way back to Resolute planning to arrive on the 26 the and hoping to arrive sooner.

The patrol marks the 60th anniversary of the founding of the Canadian Rangers in 1942. The patrol will travel almost 2,000 kilometers in 16 days, making it the longest sovereignty patrol in Canadian history.

"This sovereignty patrol is a continuing example of the service and dedication of the Canadian Rangers over the past 60 years," said Art Eggleton, minister of national defence.

"It illustrates their unique skills and vital contributions, not only to their own communities, but to Canada. Canadian Rangers, who are masters of operation in Canada's harshest environment, are an invaluable component of the Canadian Forces."

For more information on the expedition see: http://www.cfna.dnd.ca For specific scientific information on the magnetic pole please see: www.arctic.uoquelph.ca/cpe/environments/land/magpole/magpole.htm

or www.geolab.nrcan.gc.ca/geomag/e_nmpole.html

For information relating to sovereignty and climate change please see: http://isuma.net/v02n04/huebert/huebert_e.shtml


Tributes: In Remembrance of Joe Henry

Hansard, Wednesday, April 10, 2002

Mr. Jenkins: On behalf of the Yukon Party caucus, I rise today to pay tribute to a lifelong Yukoner and one of Dawson's oldest and most respect elders, and a friend of mine, who passed away last month at the fine age of 103.

Joe Henry, or Joseph Henry Shädä, was born in 1898, along the Ogilvie River, at the height of the Klondike Gold Rush. Joe lived a long and fulfilling life, spanning three centuries.

Unlike most, Joe Henry had the opportunity to witness a lot of remarkable events, as well as a number of changes throughout his lifetime. During the early years of his life, Joe spent much of his time learning the traditional ways of his people, which he later taught and openly shared with his family and friends.

Joe worked on construction boats, acted as a guide in the bush, delivered mail to Alaska by dog team, worked with the RCMP and helped rebuild the Jack London cabin in California. He was a longshoreman on the Dawson waterfront. During all this while, he continued to hunt and trap in-between jobs. Joe's attendance at Expo 67 in Montreal was an event he spoke of during one of my last visits and, also at that time, he spoke of going back out on the trapline.

Among Joe's many accomplishments over the years, the most significant achievement that comes to mind is that of his 81-year marriage to Annie Gervais, a remarkable feat that was recognized by the Guinness Book of World Records as being the longest marriage held by any couple in the world.

Joe and Annie were married on July 15, 1921 at Moosehide by Reverend Julius Kendi. As spoken by one of their sons a few years back, Joe and Annie had some pretty tough times, as Joe spent years trapping the Blackstone area and Annie had nine of their 12 children in the bush.

Despite the difficult times, they managed to strike gold over their 81 years, and their commitment to one another remained true, right through to the end. Over the years, I have come to know and respect Joe as a kind and laughing and giving man who loved to laugh and share with all. In fact, his laughter was so great it was contagious. Within my home are a fish wheel that Joe constructed, a model of one, a pair of moccasins that Annie handcrafted, and a pair of Joe's famous snowshoes. Irreplaceable, these treasures will continue to remind me of the kind-hearted man Joe was and the number of lives he touched over the last 100 years. Joe was a happy fellow and lived life as such.

He was liked and respected by everyone who knew him, and his loss will be felt not only in the Klondike but throughout the Yukon and the entire north.

While Joe will be greatly missed, he leaves behind the legacy of some 100 direct descendants. On behalf of my constituents, I wish to extend our deepest sympathy to Joe's wife Annie, their children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, their great-great-grandchildren and their great extended family.

Thank you. Mahsi'cho, Mr. Speaker.

Mrs. Peter: On behalf of the official opposition, I too rise today to pay tribute and to give thanks for the life of Joseph Henry, a most respected elder who passed away last month, at the age of 103.

[Member spoke in native language. Translation unavailable.]

Grandpa Joe Henry, as we all got to know him, shared three centuries of wisdom, knowledge and the traditional way of life with his family and with his relatives across the territory. Grandpa Joe lived a long and fulfilling life. He has seen many changes. Most of his life was spent out on the land with his family. He travelled the traditional territory of the Gwitchin and Han Gwich'in people, and this was done mostly by dog team and by foot.

Joe and Annie Henry were united in marriage on July 15, 1921, at Moosehide by a Gwitchin minister, the Reverend Julius Kendi. Together, they raised 12 children and have many grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Our history today is very unique because of the legacy of our ancestors such as Joe Henry, and I wish to extend our deepest sympathies to the family of Joe Henry.


Hon. Mr. McLachlan: I would like to pay tribute to Joe Henry on behalf of the government side. I had the unique opportunity of meeting this individual in 1998 during the 100th anniversary of Yukon celebrations that summer in Dawson.

Truly a unique individual, he was born at the height of Yukon's gold rush in 1898 and, although certainly very young at the time, when many of us could only read about the gold rush, he was one of only two or three in Yukon who could truly say, "I know; I remember, because I was there then."

He was married to his wife, Annie, in 1921 - two full years before the Queen Mother was eventually married to King George VI, and we thought that was a long marriage. Together, their marriage of 80-plus years made the Guinness Book of World Records. His life spanned across three different centuries of time, and he also holds the record of being the oldest member ever of the Dawson First Nation. There were six boys and girls born to Joe and Annie, and life was not always easy raising a family of that size around Dawson and Moosehide during the war and after the war years, but Joe worked hard at it all the time. He ran the mail to Eagle, Alaska. He worked as a scout for the RCMP, and he worked for the cat-trains that plowed further and further north, marking out the route for the highway that was to eventually become the Dempster.

One of his most memorable experiences he told me was working on the expedition with the author, Dick North, in search of the lost cabin of Jack London in the 1960s.

So long, Shädä, as he was affectionately known. You are gone but not forgotten - not forgotten by a generation of Yukoners who can only dream of living a life as long as you have and a life that was as eventful as yours was.

Thank you, Mr. Speaker.


Dazzling Lights on a Northern Screen

by Glen Sanford

When I arrived in Whitehorse and immediately met other southern filmmakers at the baggage carousel, including a guy from Australia, I knew there was going to be something special about the Easter long weekend ahead of me. Several days later, despite bulging, bloodshot eyeballs and a sitting-for-days-in-the-dark sore butt, I left Dawson with deep regret that the festival couldn't go on forever (maybe with slightly longer dinner breaks).

The Dawson City International Film Festival now ranks amongst the best film experiences of my life. In part because the whole community seemed so focused on film, in part because of the level of dialogue between filmmakers, in part because of the incredible quality of films from around the world, in part because of the proximity of Peggy's, I dunno, somehow all of these parts worked together to create a festival unparalled in Canada.

Starting the festival with Troy Suzuki's amazing chronicle of the Dawson City Nuggets set a tone for the weekend. Emotional intensity, overwhelming community support, and top-quality filmmaking defined every screening. I was astonished at the calibre of films from around the world, and amazed at the quality of work from first-time local filmmakers.

Unlike many other festivals, at Dawson there was:

Real dialogue about the art of filmmaking instead of deal-making and butt-kissing; real warmth and support from the audience instead of petty politics; great parties instead of schmoozing.

When a reporter asked me why a southern filmmaker would want to come all the way to Dawson to participate in this festival, I thought of a line in Troy's film. One of the Nuggets pointed out that journalists from outside Canada always asked, "why are you doing this just for a hockey game?" But Canadian reporters didn't ask; they understood the significance of hockey. They understood that only answer to such a question is: "why not"?

As a filmmaker, I can't think of a single reason not to attend Dawson. And now that I've seen it, I'll be back for sure. I really want to express my heartfelt thanks to the organizers, volunteers and audiences who made this such a great experience.


Moccasin Square Gardens: A World Premiere

by Palma Berger

Could this film have a World Premiere now? Was this not poor timing so soon after the Oscars? But the organizers went ahead. They showed the film. Believe it or not it was a success. People came out. The ballroom at KIAC was packed with an audience that comprised mostly locals with many wearing hockey shirts proclaiming membership of Dawson City Nuggets Hockey team. The high sound level of chatter and greetings lead one to believe that anticipation was high.

And the film? It was the World Premiere of Troy Suzuki's film , "Mocassin Square Gardens" featuring the Dawson City Nuggets team that followed in the footsteps of the 1907 team that challenged the Ottawa hockey players to a game of hockey. In his introduction Troy explained why it took him five years after the event to finally put it together. But it was well worth the wait.

It was a riotous and warm record of the team's journey first from Dawson to Whitehorse by dog-team, snow shoe and bicycle all in the tradition of their forebears who made the same trek in the same manner. The one exception this time was that there were a couple of snow mobiles accompanying them, and an Ottawa newspaper reporter. Needless to say it was one exhausted Ottawa reporter who was not used to the rugged living of the north.

Their mishaps with dog teams, snow mobiles or whatever were recorded, all in good humour. There was an incident of "Who is the referee? Obviously from the local town.!" This referred to the incident when Dawson City Nuggets played the Carmacks juniors (very juniors) and one Dawson member ended up with six of the opposition players on top of him.

In Whitehorse they were greeted by a crowd including then M.P. Audrey McLaughlin.

In Skagway they had a hero's welcome. They travelled by boat to Vancouver, by train across Canada. All along the way they brought out the friendliness and enthusiasm of people. Their natural outgoingness did this, plus the great fiddle playing of Willie Gordon whose music provided the background for the film. The team met so much support and encouragement along the way.

They got to Ottawa dressed in outdoor outfits with snow shoes strapped to their packs, or as gambler types, But first they visited the Houses of Parliament. Their hockey outfits proclaiming who they were. Parliament had never seen the likes before.

Finally they got to meet the Ottawa Senators. In the hockey arena. Here they became a bit muted but trying to sound so confident. After the game they were a bit more subdued. Many had said that if they lost the game they would shave off their beards. The film showed many naked faces later.

But emotions still run high today. Bob Sutherland feels that the Ottawa Senators should come to Dawson to play, and on an outside rink. Another person added, "They should also make the trek from Whitehorse to Dawson the same way."

For the players this was the greatest event in their lifetime.

At the showing the audience cheered, whistled, rocked with laughter, but all were moved, and were very proud. The film is a wonderful record of one great event in their lives. As Troy said at the beginning ,"It is a throwback to simpler times, full of our youthful energy. It brings out the child in us." He then noted the number of wives in the audience rolling their eyes. He feels the video has brought the event full circle. It has finished the trip.

One of the organizers, Kevin Anderson spoke of the team's great appreciation for the video. "The trip took so many years to organize. Then it was like it was suddenly all over, and we would have had nothing to show for it." He spoke of the roughness of the eight days in the bush traveling to Whitehorse and appreciated the way Troy and his camera stuck with them all the way.

The question was asked, "Would this film go over outside of Dawson?" One new comer from Calgary said, "But definitely. It was all I imagined life in the north to be. It was great."

For those who missed the film, the video may be purchased by phoning Wendy at Bombay Peggy's or Troy at 993-6569.


A Gallant Performance at the ODD Hall

by Dan Davidson

Chris Church (violin) and Leigh Grisewood (bass) provided great backing music and vocals for Lennie's own playing and singing. Photo by Dan Davidson

As emcee Glenda Bolt noted last Saturday night, Lennie Gallant has arrived in Dawson just about every way a person can, by air, by river, and finally, last weekend, by road. He seemed to be happy to be back again.

Gallant looked a little tired as he and his sidemen took to the stage in the Oddfellows' Hall, but then his attempt to "catch a few Zs" on the trip had been rudely interrupted by what he termed the "amusement park ride" section of the Klondike Highway about an hour south of town. If you are awakened by that, there's always way too much adrenaline flowing to allow you to go back to sleep.

All signs of weariness disappeared as the 11 time East Coast Music Award winner strummed the first chords of "Which Way Does the River Run?" and the audience was soon left in no doubt that it was in the presence of a great entertainer, one is as energized by his music as are those who come to listen to him.

Gallant was in town as part of what he jokingly referred to as his "Chasing Winter" tour. He said he seemed to have arrived everywhere just ahead of bad weather, even managing to hit Vancouver in time for the worst snow storm in years.

The material in his two sets covered most of the contents of his award winning album "Lennie Gallant Live", material he managed to present just as effectively with a trio as he did with the quintet on that album.

With him still from that travelling band is fiddler Chris Church, whose range of styles added most effectively to such Gallant standards as "Tales of the Phantom Ship," "Peter's Dream," and "The Band's Still Playing."

New to the ensemble was Leigh Grisewood, a BC musician who held down a respectable bottom and counterpoint on the bass guitar.

Gallant's material on this tour tended towards the faster, harder driving tunes like "The Pull of the Fundy Tide", but he is equally adept at writing and presenting sad love songs like "Pieces of You" and acidic social commentary like "Coal Black".

Lennie has been putting some effort into celebrating his Acadian roots lately, not just with bilingual efforts like "Mademoiselle (Voulex-vous dancer)" from his album "The Open Window", but also with an entire CD of songs in French, "Le Vent Boheme" (The Gypsy Wind), which will soon be appearing in stores. The trio previewed some of that material in Dawson during the concert.

In spite of tiredness from driving and two high energy sets, Gallant, Church and Grisewood were persuaded to mount the stage for two encore numbers, bringing to an end a very satisfying evening of fine entertainment.

In should be mentioned that Dawson grows a lot of home talent, too. Opening for the Lennie Gallant trio on Saturday night was the duo of Sandy Silver and Brock Turner, who are calling themselves Erroneous Roots in this incarnation of their partnership. In the spirit of the evening the two did mostly original material, which was well received.


Jazz on the Wing: an ODD Experience

by Dan Davidson

Grant Simpson (piano) and Alan Matheson (flugelhorn and cornet) sampled several decades of jazz at the Oddfellows' Hall last weekend. Photo by Dan Davidson

The poster said that Jazz on the Wing was going to be an evening of jazz for piano and trumpet, but there wasn't a trumpet to be seen in Dawson last Saturday night. Instead Alan Matheson trotted out his cornet and flugelhorn and put them through their paces while Grant Simpson tickled the ivories of the venerable (and somewhat battered) piano that services students at the Klondike Institute of Art and Culture.

Well, Matheson's chosen horns were close relatives of the brassier trumpet, and their mellow sounds, sometimes assisted by a mute and a bathroom plunger, were perhaps better suited to an evening of unplugged entertainment at the Oddfellows' Hall.

Matheson, a music instructor at the University of British Columbia, Vancouver Community College and Kapilano College, is in the Yukon to adjudicate at the 34th annual Rotary Music Festival Week. He and Grant Simpson, a staple on the Yukon jazz scene and musical godfather to the Peters Drury Trio, hit it off last year at the festival and decided to do a little tour before the event began this year. Haines Junction and Dawson City were the lucky rural settings for evenings of traditional jazz standards.

The pair chose to dwell mostly in a musical milieu which would have predated either of their births, with just a few excursions into the present for their own compositions, which were primarily exercises in that same style.

Aside from those personal numbers, the two 45 minute sets featured material associated with or written by Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Jack Teagarden, Hoagy Carmichael, just to name some of the great names on the program.

Aside from a few missed notes here and there (this is unplugged, live, and without benefit of too many rehearsals, so sometimes one or the other of them wasn't quite sure where a piece was going to end) the only annoying note of the evening (a C note, actually) was provided by the fire alarm system, which went off for some reason before the show actually got started and continued to beep sporadically at the control box through the entire first set. It was annoyingly off the beat, but the musicians ignored it.

Dawson's jazz lovers, which included folks of all ages, including members of the Band 10 class from the Robert Service School, have a lot to be grateful for. Thanks are due to KIAC, the Dawson City Arts Society, the Dawson City Music Festival, the Rotary Music Festival, the Jazz Society of the Yukon and YTG's Yukon Arts Funding Program for bringing such cool entertainment to all the cats and kittens in the Klondike.


Seasonal Food Programs Prepare for 2002

Dawson City's Seasonal Food Bank is preparing for its sixth season, and is once again looking for donations of food and cash.

The door-to-door food drive has being discontinued, but individuals are still encouraged to contribute groceries, either by dropping them off at St. Mary's (Fifth and King), or by calling 993-5361 for pick-up.

The Food Bank operates out of St. Mary's Church, with the co-operation of several other churches and a number of like-minded individuals. Now entering its sixth season, the food bank offers one-time emergency grocery assistance to those in a tight financial position.

2001 was a quiet year for the food bank--there were fewer seasonal workers in town, and those here seemed to find work quite quickly. As a result, there was a significant cache of groceries at the end of the season. These were donated to the Women's Shelter in time for their Christmas hamper program.

However, with the expected softening in the tourism industry, St. Mary's is preparing for a more difficult season. The majority of those accessing the food bank are seasonal transient workers who have just arrived in Dawson. They are occasionally surprised to find that jobs promised early in the summer do not actually begin until the tourist flow is established, and that their first cheque may be delayed until they have worked several weeks. In the meantime some find themselves in straits.

Fr. Tim Coonen co-ordinates the service. "Our goal is to help people bridge the gap between their arrival and their first cheque without having to go to Social Services. They come up here looking for work, not welfare, and usually all they need is something to eat."

It appears the program succeeds in that goal--the number of summer workers applying for welfare has declined significantly, with a net savings to tax-payers.

The other program operating out of St. Mary's is a weekly community supper, which soon will begin for the season. Every Tuesday evening for around 6 weeks a simple hot meal is provided for all who show up--primarily the transient workers new to town, with a sprinkling of locals. The gatherings give Dawson agencies an opportunity to welcome and communicate with the new-comers, and a number of individuals (conservation officers, nurses, recreation programmers, volunteer co-ordinators) traditionally give presentations.

These meals are made possible by the generosity of a squad of volunteer cooks who prepare something for one or several of the suppers. Those interested in cooking or supplying food can call 993-5361.


The Great Bear Creek Hockey Saga

The two articles which follow are meant to be viewed as coverage of a single event.

Arenaless, dedicated hockey players have had to find alternative venues again this year. Photo by J. Duncan

They came, they tried, and then they lost
Bear Creek Pond Hockey News
by J. Duncan

Kim cheers as her team from Bear Creek scores yet another goal on the challenging team from West Dawson. When interviewed, she said: "They have some good players, but I don't think they get to practice much and it shows". Kim went on to say that the West Dawson team, "May become difficult to beat next year: if they actually practice their game and work on their sportsmanship a bit".

There was a concern that the challenging team from the West was resorting to brute force to make up for talent, practice and teamwork, but early in the game Brad "the Scar Factory" Keenan took care of the West's main goon, Troy Suzuki, who was possibly hyped-up because of the release of his new hockey film, but ended up spending some serious time with his face stuffed in Bear Creek snow. The person playing defence for West Dawson that they referred to simply as "the McNaughtor", also spent a lot of time getting a close-up look at the quality of ice in Bear Creek, luckily there was no permanent harm to his face either.

Jorn Meier, Bear Creek Defenceman, described the challengers as "just a bunch of people from West Dawson really working hard at getting the odd goal not a team that works as a well-oiled machine like Bear Creek".

And in the end, they just couldn't get enough. Word is spreading that next year Dawson will see another rink located on the other side of the River (this one is free). Bear Creek Goalie, "Jagar" suggested it being the perfect time for a Dawson City Subdivision Hockey League. An unnamed opponent jokingly admits that it was the City's intent all along.

That's all for Bear Creek Pond Hockey news, until next year.

West Dawson/Bear Creek Challenge of the Century
by Troy Suzuki

Shelby held it together, though a tiny tremor on her upper lip belied the fear within. "OK, we'll be there," she managed to squeak out while one leg was already turned and trying to slink away. And fear she should, Shelby had put her Bear Creek team's neck into the powerful connabear jaws of the mighty West Dawson Hockey Team.

The April sun poking over the hills for the first time since the previous summer illuminated the Creeker's home ice. The two teams filtered down to ice level wearing their nervousness in a cloak of joking bravado. The West Dawson team, though they had never played together (some had never played) were confident their skills would shine past a Creek team that had spent the better part of two winters preparing for this game.

Game on, three on three slough hockey. Home ice was truly an advantage as the Creekers knew the cracks and mostly knew the boards. For an honest hard working West Dawson squad the first blind side into the snow bank came as a shock. These sleazy tactics were quickly learned however and soon the students were dispatching the masters with glee.

Goals, Goals, Goals, too many to count. The West Dawsonites eschewed the garbage goals preferring to scare artfully (but by the freakin' truckload). Mostly it was gritty rock'em sock'em trench war with bodies splayed out in utter recklessness culminating in the brutal open ice hit by Creeker Dave "the Framing Hammer" Heath on Karen "I Need a spatula to get up" McWilliam. This game was owned by the plumbers, the grinders most notably: Kim Biernaskie, Marieke Hiensch, Willie Mac, Chera Hunchuk, Lolita Welchman, Shelby Jordan, Jake Duncan, Mikin Jagr, Jorn Meier and Dorian Amos.

To the Creekers credit the game was much closer than anyone expected. Great fun was had by all. Special Report from the Western Front.


Sunnydale Classic 2002

Submitted by Sunnydale Classic

On a calm sunny day the umpteenth Sunnydale Classic took place. It was a perfect day for the 7-mile cruise up the Yukon River, along the old farm road, down the golf course road to the river and back to the starting line at the ice bridge. A great crowd was on hand to cheer off the 8 mushers that participated.

The results are as follows:

1. Daniel - 35 min 55 seconds
2. Johniath - 39 min 10 seconds
3. Charimane - 40 min 26 seconds
4. Brent - 41 min 15 seconds
5. Dominic - 44 min 26 seconds
6. Boyd - 48 min 28 seconds
7. Dorian - 50 min 32 seconds
8. Russell - 1 hour 1 min 10 seconds

Thank you all for your enthusiasm. A special thanks to the Novice Mushers for their spirit of adventure and accompanying misadventures associated with dog driving.

Barry, Paul, Brad and Mushers would like to thank the following sponsors who supported the 2002 Sunnydale Classic: Downtown Hotel, Northern Metallic, Klondyke Centennial Society, Home Hardware, Maximilian's, River West, Dawson City Trading Post, Jimmy's Place, Westminster Hotel, Eldorado Hotel, Bonanza Meat Company, Peabody's, Wash House, Trans North Helicopters, Benson Creek Kennels, Bonanza Gold Motel, and Paul Peirson.

Until next year have a great summer!


Dawson Housing to Go by the Numbers

by Dan Davidson

The Anglican Church Rectory faces Harper Street but is at the corner of Harper and Sixth Avenue. Which street address it should have is one of the questions yet to be resolved. Photo by Dan Davidson

The days of Dawson houses being without numeric identification are numbered. Council gave second reading on April 10 to a bylaw which will finally see street numbers placed on all residences in the town.

It's a move that has long been requested by the volunteer ambulance crew, the RCMP, and the fire department, all of which have complained at various times that it's often hard to find the house where the problem is happening.

Council is united on the need to undertake the project. The debate arose when it came time to discuss just how it would take place. The proposed bylaw would require all homes to be numbered. The town would buy the necessary metal lettering and designate where they must be placed for convenient visibility.

Councillor Wayne Potoroka extended the discussion by objecting to a couple of provisions in the bylaw, specifically those that would require all residents to use the same type of number and place them in about the same spot on the house. He felt this infringed on property owners' rights.

He was also anxious to retain the historical numbering system, which some people have said is part of the problem.

Right now, two lots of 7th Avenue, beside each other and on the same side of the street, can bear numbers that are six digits apart. That particular house is not numbered. Directions to get to it involve colour, location, street number and elevation: the blue house on 7th Avenue in between Princess and Queen on the high side of the street.

Other lots, located on corners, have their front doors on an east-west street, but are numbered according to the north-south avenue.

Mayor Glen Everitt said that the bylaw would not come up for third reading until the first council meeting in May, about three weeks off, and that council was open to suggestions for amendments between now and then. One possibility is renumbering the streets according to today's reality rather than Joe Ladue's original concept.

As Joanne Van Nostrand noted, if the community really hates the idea of uniform numbers then there is no point in the town going to the expense of buying and providing them.

The bylaw was proposed in that fashion to spare property owners the admittedly small expense of having to buy the numbers themselves, and also to standardize the signage.

Potoroka ended up voting against the bylaw in its first two readings, even though it had been his turn in the rotation to move it in the first place. The debate was not acrimonious, but it was often amusing.


The Minute Pools

by Palma Berger

Everyone is familiar with Dawson's Ice Pool tickets and the guessing for the day , the hour, the minute the ice goes out on the Yukon. But if you were here three decades ago you would have seen the Minute Pool grids in various businesses in Dawson.

Each page had a grid with 60 numbered squares on it. By writing your name on the square that had a number that you thought most likely would be the minute no a.m. or p.m. on which the ice would go out, you were betting on that square. There were different prizes for the lucky winner, a gold nugget wrist watch, or a camera, or groceries, or even money for the winner.

Then this great institution died out. But this year it has again been revived.

John Gould thought of doing this as a fund raiser for the cash-strapped museum's various projects. In the "old" days, the cost per square ranged from 50 cents to $100.00 depending on who was organizing the Pool. But this year the prices range from a $2.00 a square to another sheet with $5.00 squares, and another with $10.00 squares.

The beauty of the Minute Pool is that the tickets can be sold right up to the minute the ice goes out. The winning minute is the one that the ice goes out on, or if no one has that exact minute it then becomes the minute following.

John recalls how he always bought up #6, in competition with another lady in town. One year he decided to pass on Number 6, and that was the year the ice went out on #6.

For the short time John Gould and Fred Berger had custody of the pools they were doing a brisk trade, but they will be on sale at various outlets around town.

There have been only twenty pools printed up , and when they are full, there will be no more chances to place your bets. So watch for them.


Warming Up for the Festival

by Dan Davidson

The choir members try out their new butterfly wings. Photo by Dan Davidson

Practice as you may on your own, there is no substitute for taking your work out of the rehearsal room and trying it out on an audience. That was the situation in the Robert Service School ancillary room on the evening of April 11, when the school choir and a number of piano students from the Klondike Institute of Art and Culture tried out their skills for an audience of their parents and peers.

The choir practices each Tuesday and Thursday at lunch and is on call annually for anthems at special school assemblies and a number of community events. Their big project each year, though, is getting ready for the Rotary Music Festival and director Betty Davidson has missed one of these events since she started working with choirs in Faro 20 years ago.

Assisted by pianist Gwen Bell the choir presented their two festival pieces. June Clapp's "Put Your Dreams on a Butterfly" was a lively number enhanced by a bit of choreography and coloured ribbons.

From KIAC, Gwen Bell brought five of her piano students, performing at a number of levels and in many different styles.

Luke Hunter gave us Purcell's "Hornpipe" and Norton's "Ambling".

Ted Hunter played Telfer's "Skeleton Dance" and Norton's "Tut-tuttin'".

Heather Touchie warmed up with William's "Star Wars Theme" and then moved into "March of the Goblins" by Berlin.

Robyn Touchie performed "Fallin'" by Alicia Keys.

Alix Causer-McBurney offered Handel's "Impertinence" and Norton's "Ragtime".

Luke and Ted Hunter closed the piano portion of the program with a duet on the old traditional tune "Turkey in the Straw".

The choir close the evening with Kirby Shaw's "Chocolate", a novelty piece with its own bit of movement, an appropriate choice for a choir which has had to sell a great many chocolate goodies to help finance its annual excursion to the big city.


Raven Night

by Dan Davidson

Where do the ravens go at night? Photo by Dan Davidson

Where do the ravens go at night?
During the day they are everywhere:
gliding lazily from roof to roof,
springboarding from the light standards,
swooping in gangs to pester
those poor dogs
whose owners feed them outdoors.
Whether puffed up on a street lamp,
clacking industriously from a tree branch,
or challenging each other
for some scrap of bone,
they are all around.

Until nightfall.
When they are not.

Have they taken to the brush,
concealed themselves as deeper shadows
within the black spruce,
their usually ceaseless nattering
done for another day?
Is there some secret place where the ravens go
to share their stories of the day's trickery
and plan for tomorrow?

Or do they simply ascend
into the darkness and join it,
becoming one with the primal raven that
hides the sun each night?
And when they suddenly appear in the morning,
have they merely precipitated
from the greater blackness?


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