Valley Living Summer 2022

Page 1

Summer 2022

The Mat-Su Valley, one story at a time

inside • Yoga with Goats • Glamping • Susitna Brewing • Historic Plane Takes Flight • Mud Volleyball

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 1


page 4

inside 4

Fairground Barn

6

The Fern

8

Palmer Towne Food Court

10 Why Not Tri? 12 Glamping 14 Goat Yoga 16 Historic Plane Takes Flight 18 Summer Fun 20 Susitna Brewing 22 Mud Volleyball

page 6 EDITOR’S NOTE Welcome to summer, and thank you for reading Valley Living Summer 2022. Each edition of our quarterly magazine gives us another opportunity to write about the people and places of the Mat-Su. We try to feature the season. This year we wanted to feature some summer fun.

page 10

Instead of camping, how about glamping? There is a new spot in the Palmer area for those who want a few more comforts while roughing it. We also have a few fun things to do during the summer, such as visiting Friday Fling every week in Palmer. For those who are hungry for something different, there is the Palmer Towne Food Court. Speaking of different, how about goat yoga? This edition also includes a pair of restaurants relatively new to the Valley, The Fern and Susitna Brewing. We have some Valley history also, a vintage airplane and a project to maintain barns from generations ago. Enjoy your summer in the Mat-Su. Thanks again for reading, Jeremiah Bartz, managing editor

page 14 Dennis Anderson Group Publisher, Wick Communications Alaska dennis.anderson@frontiersman.com

Tawni Davis Publisher, Regional Marketing Director Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman

Jeremiah Bartz Managing Editor, Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman

Petra Albecker Regional Multimedia Marketing Consultant

Ben Borg Regional Multimedia Marketing Consultant

editor@frontiersman.com

petra.albecker@frontiersman.com

ben.borg@frontiersman.com

Katie Stavick Contributor

Jacob Mann Contributor

tawni.davis@frontiersman.com

Valley Living is a product of the Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman. 2

VALLEY LIVING

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


Mat-Su’s premier lifestyle magazine

Valley Living magazine covers the people, surroundings and events that make the Mat-Su Valley the best place to live, work and play, with features on lifestyle, art, recreation, culinary, home & garden, business, and more. Published quarterly in print and as E-edition, it attracts engaged, female readers, ages 30+. Pick up your free copy at many high traffic locations around the Mat-Su or go to frontiersman.com for the E-edition. Is connecting to an educated and hyperlocal female readership important to your business? Then discover the power of targeted magazine advertising. With Valley Living magazine, you will get in front of active and passionate women who are keen to discover and enjoy new experiences and products. Contact our team today to learn about advertising and sponsor opportunities in Valley Living!

Frontiersman M at- S u V alley

advertising@frontiersman.com A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

907-352-2250 VALLEY LIVING 3


L A NDM A RK S

Colonial Barn at Alaska State Fairgrounds BY JACOB MANN

A

colonial barn was recently moved to the Rebarchek Agricultural Park within the Alaska State Fairgrounds. The Rebarchek Agricultural Park is a colonial farmstead that was operated by Ray Rebarchek and his family for many years. It was one of the first colonial farms in the Mat-Su Valley. While the original Rebarchek barn and its replacement are no longer on the property, the addition of an authentic barn from the original colony that is being fully restored will add a whole new dimension to their overall efforts fostering local agriculture, community events, and educational opportunities. “We’ve got a colony barn on a colony farmstead,” Rebarchek Agricultural Park project coordinator, LaMarr Anderson said. Anderson said the barn that was moved to Rebarchek Farm was transported from Scott Road with the help of multiple entities such as H5 Construction, MTA, GCI, and MEA. “They wanted to help preserve the history,” Anderson said. “It was a community effort.” According to Anderson, restoration efforts are nearly complete and the barn will look very much like it did during the days of the colonists, down to period appropriate windows and other materials. He said that aim to finish by the end of 2022. “It still represents a colony barn,” Anderson said. Once restored, the barn will serve as a multipurpose facility that

4

VALLEY LIVING

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


will house a variety of classes, concerts, events and other activities. Anderson noted that it will also be available rental so the public can hold weddings and other gatherings. He said they’re adding two bathrooms to the back of the facility, but the overall interior will be fairly simple and rustic with livestock and other farm friendly assets cycling through the doors. “This inside of the barn is going to look like the inside of a barn,” Anderson said. Anderson said the addition of this old yet new facility will help them expand their overall educational efforts, including new youth programs to inspire the next generation of farmers thanks to the artifacts and legacy left behind by the original colonial farmers. “It’s all meant to support agriculture,” Anderson said. The Alaska State Fair owns the Rebarchek property and utilizes the area to promote agriculture through efforts such as holding

educational workshops and providing plots of land for local groups and individuals to experiment with crops. “It fits the whole theme of the Fair,” Anderson said.

The agricultural park is officially listed on the National Register of Historic Places. Anderson said that he works with numerous community members to maintain the area and develop more

opportunities over time. “It’s all volunteers. It’s people with a passion,” Anderson said. For more information, visit alaskastatefair.org/site/rebarchekag-park.

FIT FOR SUMMER! WE’RE OPEN 24 HOURS! Experience a full-service family friendly health and fitness center with gym facilities and so much more! Sign up for cycling, swim lessons or consult with a Personal Trianer to tailor a routine for you. Have kids? No worries, drop off the young ones at our child care center and enjoy the rest of what The Alaska Club has to offer!

SOAR HIGH

360° OF FITNESS SOMETHING FOR

4 UNIQUE BIRTHDAY PARTY PACKAGES NINJA COURSE • ARCADE • LASER MAZE INSERVICE & HOLIDAY CAMPS • EVENTS MEMBERSHIPS • FOOD COURT • V.R TIME TO PLAN A GREAT DAY AT FLY TRAMPOLINE PARK • (907) 357-5867 FLyTrampolinePark.com

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

EVERY SIDE OF YOU TheAlaskaClub.com VALLEY LIVING 5


FRE S H E ATS

The Fern BY JACOB MANN

J

eff Devon and Ashley Siracusa established The Fern in downtown Palmer to sell more than acai and smoothies. They set out to create a health conscious gathering place for the community. “We really wanted to make a place for people to come together,” Siracusa said. “It’s become a little melting pot here.” The Fern officially opened in January of 2022. Devon said they’ve had a productive start to their new business, and it’s

6

VALLEY LIVING

been busier than they anticipated. “We’ve been hitting the ground running since we opened,” Devon said. The Fern offers a variety of “superfood” acai bowls that contain fresh and wholesome ingredients. Customers can choose from variety of pre-made bowls or make their own. Each one of our super food items has something a little bit extra thats good for you,” Devon said. The Fern sells numerous other menu items such as smoothies,

coffee, and tea. Devon said they take numerous steps to keep tons of waste out of landfills such as working with local farmers to compost. From the ground up we want to be as sustainable as possible. We’re doing what we can to close the waste loop,” The Fern currently has 10 employees, growing from its modest start of three in January. Devon said they encourage their staff to creatively come up with new menu items and help their overall business culture thrive.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


The Fern offers a variety of “superfood” acai bowls that contain fresh and wholesome ingredients.

“We’ve got a really great team here,” Devon said. The Fern is both Devon and Siracusa’s first time running a small business. Devon said that he’s glad that they took the leap into this new and exciting adventure. “It was pretty scary at first but it’s extremely rewarding,” Devon said. “We’re really excited to see how this is going to play out.” Looking long-term, Devon and Siracusa aim to eventually add additional locations. Siracusa said

they plan to further integrate into Palmer’s community events such as Colony Days and Friday Fling. She said they hope to inspire people to follow their dreams and start their own business like they did. “I want to be a voice for other entrepreneurs, to show that it is possible,” Siracusa said. The Fern is located at 625 South Cobb Street in downtown Palmer. For more information, call 907745-3376 or visit thefernak.com.

WHAT’S NEXT

PROUD SUPPLIER OF

ON YOUR HOME IMPROVEMENT LIST

Start now and be ready for a Winter Remodel, with a little help from SBS. Let our experienced team of Designers help with planning, design, and product selection tailored to fit your budget. Schedule your FREE Consultation with a SBS Design Specialist today! Your New Kitchen Begins Here. ASK SBS!

ASK SBS

SBSALASKA.COM A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 7


OP E N FO R B US INE SS

Palmer Towne Food Court open for business BY JACOB MANN

T

he Palmer Towne Food Court is officially open for business. Several local food vendors participated in the official launch held over the weekend. “I felt good about it. I was happy that people knew we were there,” Palmer Town Food Court owner Lolly Hale said. Hale established The Palmer Towne Food Court to maintain a steady venue for new and seasoned food truck owners and other food vendors from across the Valley. Looking forward, Hale aims to

8

VALLEY LIVING

hold the market every Friday and Saturday. Her main goals are to build up the market to the point of establishing a year-round venue within the former Genesis Drycleaner facility through her husband Joseph Hale’s contracting company H Construction. She said that she’s thankful for the opportunity, and she’s encouraged by all the positive feedback that she’s received from vendors and visitors alike. “I think being part of the business community at the level I can handle as a wife and mom and still be the person I want to be for my family has been really exciting,” Hale said.

Fox Sauce LLC owner Kacey Kruger was one of several participating vendors that ran a booth during the launch. She said that she likes the idea of this new venue and what it has to offer. “This market has been a great addition to downtown Palmer,” Kruger said. “I think it was much needed, a place to gather.”

Birdhouse Sandwich Company owner Matt Shaughnessy agreed with Kruger’s sentiment about the supportive nature of the local food truck community. “It is a ‘help me help you’ kind of environment for the food trucks. We have healthy competition but more often than not, people are friendly,” Shaughnessy said.

According to Kruger, there are a lot of talented food vendors in the Valley that not only offer high-quality dishes but plenty of support to other vendors along the way.

Shaughnessy started his food truck business in 2019. He said that he appreciates being a part of this new and exciting venue.

“Everyone just kinda works together and treats it like one big happy family,” Kruger said.

According to Shaughnessy, the local food truck community has grown substantially over the

“This has been a fantastic spot,” Shaughnessy said.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


years. “It’s just astronomical how large it’s gotten. It was kind of an untapped thing out here in the Valley,” Shaughnessy said. Venues such as Palmer Towne Food Court can help local vendors like Shaughnessy with a reliable place to go each week where people know they can find them. He said that he is fully behind the owners’ vision and plans to be a permanent fixture at the market. “I won’t be moving around anymore because I think I found my home here. That’s what I’ve always seen looking for,” Shaughnessy said. “They moved mountains to make this thing happen. I feel blessed to be a part of it.” The Palmer Towne Food Court is located at 127 South Alaska Street in downtown Palmer. For more information, call 907-9822042 or visit the official Facebook page.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 9


Why Not Tri? PHOTOS BY BRUCE EGGLESTON

N

early 400 men, women and children participated in the 12th annual Why Not Tri triathlon in June. The event, Wasilla’s first triathlon, was started in 2011. The triathlon features a 400-yard swim in the Wasilla Pool, a 9.5-K bike ride and a 5-K run in the area around Wasilla High School. Each year race organizers make a donation to the ALS Therapy Development Institute. Todd Jackson, of Anchorage, was the overall winner, finishing first in men’s class with a time of 51 minutes, 58 seconds. Morgan Aldridge, of Sterling, won the women’s class with a time of 1:07.

10

VALLEY LIVING

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 11


IN S TY L E

Alaskan Upscale-Glamping brings together the love of outdoors and the comforts of a bed BY KATIE STAVICK

E

ach year, Alaska attracts thousands of visitors, whether to seek out the majesty and splendor of Denali, the vast open spaces of the interior, or the thrill of the sport while fishing along the many coastlines and rivers. Alaska is rugged with plenty of untamed beauty that calls to people who just want to soak it up, and many utilize an RV or just good old fashioned camping to fully absorb the Alaskan life. For many, camping involves getting down and dirty, roughing it, and becoming one with the great outdoors and getting down and dirty with nature, right? Well, no, actually. Not always. Camping doesn’t always have to mean roughing it. In fact, it’s becoming quite the trend to go “glamping.” Exactly as it sounds, glamping is a more glamorous spin on camping and it is bringing a whole new level of interest to the camping scene. Some may consider glamping

an upgrade in rest and recreation, while others still prefer the ruggedness of camping. This new type of travel undeniably captures any potential “negatives” of camping life and pivots a high level of service that can focus on the complete comfort of

its guests. And it is that level of comfort within the rugged Alaskan beauty that Laura “Lulu” Wilson is bringing to the Knik River. She recently opened “Lulu’s Tents and Events,” along the Old Glenn Highway outside of Palmer. This is an adult glamping experience, so guests must be over 18. Currently, visitors can rent one of her 6 Stout Bell Tents. And these aren’t the typical canvas tents with room enough for you and your sleeping bag, and maybe a cooler. Each tent is named after a river that feeds into the Gulf of Alaska, and each tent is uniquely decorated to add to the glamour. Inside Lulu’s tents, you will find a queen size bed with linens, extra blankets, rugs, seating for

12

VALLEY LIVING

two and stylish decor. And the relaxed vibe doesn’t stop there. Outside there is seating for two and a smokeless Solo stove for warmth if need on those cooler Alaskan nights. There is also a space for guests to sit and relax around a cozy bonfire while taking in the exquisite beauty of the Knik River and the rugged mountains, with 212 square feet along the river. At Lulu’s, travelers will also find an outdoor kitchen, with a small commercial grill with extra burners, so if guests don’t have to sit around a campfire roasting a hotdog, they can prepare an Alaskan gourmet meal. While breakfast is not served yet, Wilson does offer coffees and teas for guests to partake. Sorry, though, Lulu’s does not allow pets. But does offer WiFi access

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


for people who can’t totally be one with nature unplugged. All part of the key to the glamping experience. While glamping, people can still enjoy all that nature has to offer, but don’t necessarily have to part with that cozy, homey vibe. For anyone thinking this is a fly-by-night trend, glamping has always been around. Genghis Khan, the founder of the Mongol Empire, ruled from a sizable ger, or wooden canvas and felt tent, but because the empire was so geographically extensive, it has been said that his ger was never completely broken down, but was simply put on a wheeled cart and pulled by oxen as he traveled. Because of the Mongol empire expansion, yurts began to spread in popularity, and people in Eastern Europe, in countries such as Turkey, Hungary and Romania, began to use yurts, too. According to National Geographic, “Yurts remained very common in Turkey well into the 1960s and 1970s, and are still found in rural areas of Hungary.” Later in the 16th and 17th century, a luxury campsite was set up for King James V and his mother in the Scottish Highlands, filling the interior of the tents with luxurious furniture and ornaments from his own palace. From June 7 to 24, 1520, during a diplomatic summit called the Field of the Cloth of Gold was held in France. About 2,800 tents and marquees were set up, surrounded by fountains spouting red wine. During the Turkish Ottoman Empire military campaigns, the imperial tents for the sultan were particularly lavish and essentially mobile palaces. There were two of them, so that when the sultan was in one of them, they could pitch the other one in its next destination so that it would be ready for the sultan’s arrival. One French archaeologist even wrote that the sultan’s tents were so large that they were carried by six hundred camels.

But the word really took flight around 2005 around the world, and gained momentum in the 2010’s, becoming so popular, the word “glamping” was officially added to the Oxford Dictionary. The spike in popularity in the United States is further enhanced by the launch of the American Glamping Association in April 2018. Wilson isn’t new to the tourism world. Having worked in the hospitality industry for 20 years, she also brings extensive event planning experience: “The whole tourism world has been an attraction for me, and parties and events, and I had been toying with the idea, but the timing was off, the finances weren’t there, and I didn’t own my own business, so I was always working for somebody else,” she said. Her work in event planning took an interesting turn when she became a wedding officiant:

Then COVID hit, and any full weddings that she had were being cancelled or postponed indefinitely as the lockdowns hit. But that turned out to be a blessing in disguise “It saved my sanity and my business,” she said, and even amid the financial hit she took, Wilson discovered that she liked being her own boss, saying “I’m working all the time, but at the same time, I just love it.” After selling some property, Wilson realized that she could either spend the money foolishly or invest it in something, and she was able to purchase the property her glamping business now sits on. “I could create this little oasis for people to come visit as independent travelers, plan micro-weddings, family reunions, retreat, really anything. The possibilities here are endless,” Wilson says. Wilson has been able to merge

the glamping with weddings to create a unique “Glamping Elopement Package” that lets couples take advantage of an intimate wedding ceremony and the glamping experience, the backdrop of the Knik River and ease of wedding planning. While it has been a lot of hard work for Wilson to get her glamping business up and running, she says it has also been fun and looks forward to visitors making the discovery of glamping. “I just like the idea of glamping and I just want to offer a unique experience for people. So bring a toothbrush and a sense of adventure!” Love it or hate it, glamping is a thriving trend that continues to grow. To learn more about “Lulu’s Tents and Events,” visit lulusalaskangetaway.com

“A woman who was an officiant retired. She was the one I always used, and she said I should think about officiating,” and though Wilson preferred staying behind the scenes, she soon came to discover that she enjoyed performing wedding ceremonies. She went on to start “Say Yes Alaska” in 2019. “I love it! I get a high off of it!” she said with a giggle. The first year was hard, with few events taking place as she got that business off the ground.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

591 E. Parks Hwy, Unit 407 907-357-1543 VALLEY LIVING 13


YO GA W IT H G OATS

Namaste and Kids: Goat yoga event brings attention to local non-profit BY KATIE STAVICK

O

ne would think that baby goats and yoga have not one thing in common. After all, yoga is about bringing harmony and balance to the mind and body. Baby goats are all about being adorable, despite the near-whine of their bleating and penchant for chewing on anything in their path. And while it may sound silly, goat yoga is an actual thing and is a lot of fun. Baby goat yoga, or just “goat yoga,” is a novelty yoga practice made famous in 2016. If yoga with goats sounds odd to you, you’re not alone. And make no mistake — the concept doesn’t go back thousands of years like the spiritual discipline of yoga. The founder is a woman named Lainey Morse, who in 2016 decided to start this practice with some goats she owned in Albany, Oregon. Around this time, the story goes, Lainey was going through a difficult period. Divorce, the recent diagnosis of a disease, and other setbacks had her struggling emotionally. But whenever she was around her goats, her world brightened. Of all farm animals, goats are some of the most carefree and happy, and with adorable baby goats, whose world isn’t automatically lit up with fun and joy? Lainey decided that this spark of joy should be shared and she began offering “goat happy hours” to locals and anyone interested in some goat therapy of their own. But her shared joy didn’t end there. She and a friend thought 14

VALLEY LIVING

up the idea to combine “goat happy hours” with yoga for the ultimate combination of physical and emotional radiance and joy? Not long after that, goat yoga took off and became extremely popular in various places all over North America. And goat yoga has reached the Last Frontier. Recently, a goat yoga event was held in Wasilla to help bring attention to Bee Well Alaska, a new non-profit that recently started to help provide scholarships as a means to help families needing chiropractic care for their children. Bee Well Alaska is the brainchild of Billie Jo Christensen, whose husband, Dr. Josh Christensen, owns the Bee Well Chiropractic office in Wasilla. The office specializes in pediatric, perinatal,

and family chiropractic care. While there are dozens and dozens of chiropractors in the Mat-Su Borough, only a handful work with children, and many people might be surprised at how beneficial chiropractic care can be for children. “Chiropractic helps people with autism, ear infections, behavior issues at school, bedwetting, the possibilities are endless,” she extolled the usefulness of the most popular of holistic health care treatments. But with skyrocketing prices of healthcare, Christensen was quick to realize that not everyone is able to afford chiropractic care, and some insurances do not cover the practice either. “We would see families come into his office trying to get help

for their children and they couldn’t afford it and they would leave in tears. I thought there’s got to be a better way that we can help people,” said Christensen of the inspiration to start Bee Free Alaska. Bee Well Chiropractic often fields calls from parents asking if they can help, and Christensen knew she wanted to help, felt it was a calling to do something, and after thinking of ways to help, she set up a scholarship fund to help. Shortly after receiving their non-profit status, Bee Free Alaska was able to give their first scholarship away to a family in need. “A family out of Seward had been in Anchorage to deliver their baby. Mother and baby had a

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


really hard birth, a midwife had heard about what we were doing and reached out to us,” she said. “Normally a baby presents crown first, and this time, the baby presented forehead first, which put pressure on the brain, causing discomfort for the baby.” The baby had been unable to nurse due to the trauma of the birth, which lead to failure to thrive. Because and with the help of Bee Free Alaska, chiropractic care was set up and Christensen reports that with a few soft adjustments, the baby was doing well and the family was able to return to Seward in time for fishing season. “This is exactly why we started this and we were able to fund the scholarship for them.” Meanwhile, participants of the Goat Yoga were excited to participate, “I’ve always wanted to do Goat Yoga, it was on my bucket list, so I decided to go ahead and join up, and it was benefitting a good cause,” said Debbie Bushnell.

Meanwhile, another goat yoga participant, Shawn Walsh, who has been around goats but had never done yoga before, was busy fending off a kid that found his towel quite tasty. “It was fun. Never done yoga but the goats did make it interesting,” he commented. At the end of the session, Bushnell noted how much fun she had and how relaxing it all was, and of course goats! Bee Free Alaska has other events lined up to help raise funds and awareness. A parent may apply for a scholarship to receive chiropractic care from a neurological based chiropractor in the state of Alaska through the Bee Well Alaska website. To learn more about Bee Free Alaska, to donate, or to apply for a scholarship to offset chiropractic care cost, visit www.beefreealaska.org

Serving Customers with a Smile since 2001

teams proud sponsor of local youth te 2015, 2016, 2017, 2020, 2021

Get your Perkup Rewards to earn free drinks Follow us at Perkup Espresso LLC on Facebook and Instagram for random giveaways and specials A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

7 LOCATIONS TO SERVE YOU | OPEN 7 DAYS A WEEK Palmer 1800 N Glenn Hwy – 746-4365 1754 N Prospect Drive – 745-5028 Wasilla 3700 E Palmer Wasilla Hwy– 357-5027 2200 E Parks Hwy – 373-5027 1690 S Fern Street – 357-5020 7534 W Parks Hwy (Meadow Lakes) – 232-0323 Anchorage 201 W Potter – 561-2028 VALLEY LIVING 15


HIS TO RY

Historic airplane makes its way to the Mat-Su Valley BY JACOB MANN

L

ocal pilot Alan Carpenter recently acquired a unique piece of history, a fully functional Noorduyn Norseman, also known as the C-64 Norseman. The C-64 Norseman is a Canadian single-engine bush plane that was first flown in 1935, according to the National Museum of the United States Airforce website. The plane was designed for challenging arctic operations across Canada. It can be equipped with wheels, floats, or skis.

16

VALLEY LIVING

This is what opened up Canada to their exploration of resources. This is the airplane that brought people and supplies in and out of places,” Carpenter said Carpenter expressed immense excitement over this unique opportunity. He said that he purchased the plane from an individual in Minnesota. “I never thought I’d have the opportunity to fly it someday,” Carpenter said. According to Carpenter, there are only about 10 of these Norseman airplanes across the world that are currently in flying

condition.

said.

“There aren’t many left. It’s a very historic airplane,” Carpenter said. “It’s just an awesome airplane and I feel privileged. I couldn’t be more pleased.”

Carpenter’s Norseman was fully restored and repainted. He said that he intends to get it certified to use for his charter business Alaska Flying Adventures LLC.

Norseman airplanes have an extensive history of military and civilian service. The model was used by the U.S. Army Aircorps during WWII.

“It flies beautifully,” Carpenter said. “We’ll see where it all goes. I just want to fly it well and protect it… I see the love that other pilots have had for this plane over the years.”

Carpenter said the plane he purchased has a rich history. He said he has a large collection of logbooks and knows that the plane was used during the Korean War. “It was a warbird,” Carpenter

Carpenter said that it was a long but sentimental journey to bring the plan to Alaska. He said that they made it a point to make a stop in Red Lake, Ontario, the

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


“There aren’t many left. It’s a very historic airplane,” Carpenter said. “It’s just an awesome airplane and I feel privileged. I couldn’t be more pleased.” “Norseman Capital of the World.”

Carpenter said.

This gave several people, including an elderly pilot who went on numerous flights with this particular plane, a chance to see the aircraft and bask in the memories long past.

Danielson said that he’s happy for Carpenter, and he’s thrilled that this historic airplane can be used just as effectively now as it did many years ago.

“It was emotional. It was touching. It was the best part of our trip,” Carpenter said. Carpenter didn’t have to make his journey back to the Last Frontier alone. He was joined by his friend and a lifelong pilot, Dave Danielson. Danielson helped connect Carpenter to the plane and accompanied him the whole way. “It really helps to have someone else in the cockpit with you,”

“We’re fortunate to still have it around,” Danielson said. Carpenter said that he is grateful for the opportunity to keep a piece of history alive and well for years to come. “More people will have an opportunity to learn about this airplane. I think a lot of people are going to enjoy seeing it flying in it,” Carpenter said.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 17


REVE C RE NDO ATIO RS N

Summer fun in the Valley BY JACOB MANN

T Valley.

here’s plenty of fun things to do during the summer months across the Mat-Su

Each week, farmers, vendors, musicians, and the general public gather in downtown Palmer for Friday Fling. This annual marketplace features a variety of locally sourced goods and services on top of live entertainment provided by local musicians. Friday Fling runs from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. near the Palmer Museum of History and Art. For more information, visit palmerchamber.org/ fridayfling. The Wasilla Farmers Market features local vendors offering a variety of

PALMER’S PREMIER CANNABIS RETAIL STORE Located in the heart of Downtown Featuring products cultivated by The Connoisseur Local source of some of Alaska’s favorite cannabis strains: Snowcapped Romance, Sugar Cookies, Superglue, and Citric Acid.

OPEN DAIL0Y PM 10AM-1

theconnoisseurlounge.net | 907-746-4200 226 Evergreen Ave, Palmer, AK 99645 MARIJUANA HAS INTOXICATING EFFECTS AND MAY BE HABIT FORMING. MARIJUANA IMPAIRS CONCENTRATION, COORDINATION, AND JUDGEMENT. DO NOT OPERATE A VEHICLE OR MACHINERY UNDER ITS INFLUENCE. FOR USE BY ADULTS 21 AND OLDER. KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN. THERE ARE HEALTH RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH THE CONSUMPTION OF MARIJUANA. MARIJUANA SHOULD NOT BE USED BY WOMEN WHO ARE PREGNANT OR BREASTFEEDING.

18

VALLEY LIVING

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


items, ranging from unique gifts to fresh produce. The Wasilla Farmers Market is open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Wednesday near Wonderland Park. For more information, visit wkhsociety.org/ wasilla-farmer-s-market. The Palmer Ale House hosts a variety of performers from across the state during the annual summer concert series. For more information, visit palmeralehouse.com/concerts-andevents The People’s Paper hosts Music in the Park in downtown Wasilla throughout the month of June and a final concert in July. This annual music series draws musicians from across the state. For more information, visit makeasceneak.com/musicinthepark.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 19


SUS IT VE NA NDO B RE RSWING

Big Lake Welcomes Newest Dining Option BY KATIE STAVICK

T

here is now a new dining option in Big Lake-the Susitna Brewing Company. Sitting on the sunny shores of South Big Lake, the new restaurant recently enjoyed a successful soft opening in its Little Su Café. “We recognized there was a need for something out here on this side of the Valley beyond the casual diners here,” said General Manager Scott Bedford. The Café boasts a variety of homemade soups, fresh salads, appetizers to whet your appetite. Specialty menu items include handcrafted specialty pizzas and half-pound burgers, along

20

VALLEY LIVING

with several craft beers from Midnight Sun, Kenai River, and Peninsula Brewers Reserve. They also offer weekend specials such as a 10-oz ribeye or filet mignon. Recently, the Brewery expanded their menu to include breakfast choices that change often. On a recent visit, brunch options included French Toast and Eggs Benedict, an espresso menu with the caffeine jolt diners and guests can appreciate. Another specialty is the incredible view of Big Lake and the mountains in the distance. The summer promises continuing progress and construction as work on long-term plans that are in motion for Susitna Brewing

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


Company that will include a taproom featuring beer brewed on site, a banquet room that will eat 140 for sit-down meals, a separate dining area for 160, a wraparound deck, beer garden, and a gift shop. “We fill a unique niche that people can come to and they seem to be pleased to have another option for dining out here. To have a place that has good quality food and good quality craft beer.” He also hopes to feature local artists who would be interested in putting their pieces up along the spacious wall space. After the successful soft opening in the spring, the GM said he couldn’t be happier with the support the Brewery has gotten from the community already. Their Facebook page show strong support and a welcome reception for the new dining option. “We are just so excited and pleased to be part of the community. We’re so thankful to

the community already, to the people that have already come in and supported us.” Bedford acknowledges that the supply chain has made plans challenging, but remains undaunted in his dream to bring the brewery to life. He is also excited for the open concept brewery that visitors and patrons will be able to walk through and is working with tour groups to host tastings and tours. As the work continues, Bedford praised his staff for the “wonderful work they have been doing. I just couldn’t be happier with the team we have here.” The Susitna Brewery expanded their hours of dining Thursdays from 4:00 pm-9:00 pm, and Fridays-Sundays, from 11:00am to 9:00pm, and folks with a hunger for their pizzas can call in for a to go order Tuesdays-Thursdays 11:00 am-7:00 pm. The Susitna Brewery is located at 5120 S Big Lake Road in Big Lake.

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 21


Getting muddy: Big Lake Lions Club hosts annual volleyball tourney PHOTOS BY JACOB MANN

T

he annual Big Lake Lions Club Mud Volleyball Tournament drew a sizable crowd Saturday, June 18. A total of 48 teams participated in this year’s tournament. The Mud Volleyball Tournament is a highly popular summer event that attracts people from across the state each year. The event started over three decades ago and is the biggest fundraiser of the year for the Big Lake Lions Club.

22

VALLEY LIVING

A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C A T I O N S


A P U B L I C AT I O N O F W I C K C O M M U N I C AT I O N S

VALLEY LIVING 23


͎

DOWNLOAD APP More than 6,000 locally written stories, columns,

͎

DOWNLOAD letters toAPP editor, and photos in the past year. More than 6,000 locally written stories, columns, More to than 6,000 letters editor, and photos in the past year.

locally written stories, columns, letters to editor, and photos in the past year.

Get Informed. Stay Connected.

Don’t let social media determine the local news you see! Download the Frontiersman APP today! Your Community. Your Voice.

Informed. Stay GetGet Informed. StayConnected. Connected. Get your

News directly on your phone with our Frontiersman app.

Don’t let social media determine the local news you see! Download the Frontiersman APP today!

Download the APP Directly Don’t let social media determine theYour localCommunity. news you see! Download the Frontiersman APP today! Your Voice.

Get your

News directly on your phone with our Frontiersman app. Your Community. Your Voice.

Text “Frontiersman” to 555-888 to preview app or go to frontiersman.com/newsapp

News directly on your phone with our Frontiersman app.

( 9 0 7 ) 3 5 2 - 2 2 5 0 • f r o n t i eDownload r s m a nthe. cAPP o mDirectly

262462

Get your

Text “Frontiersman” to 555-888 to preview app or go to frontiersman.com/newsapp (907) 352-2250 • frontiersman.com

(907) 352-2250 • frontiersman.com

262462

Text “Frontiersman” to 555-888 to preview app Directly or go to frontiersman.com/newsapp Download the APP