Daylight savings = not my favorite. Fortunately, there are all sorts of other good things happening in our world. The best stories from last week are all about the Iditarod and Alaskans doing extraordinary things: honoring their cultures, going deep into the history of Guinness, saving lives, and learning how to survive as a couple while adventuring. Looking forward, there are plenty of fun events coming up if you’re looking for something to do, although if this weather holds I think you’ll find all of Anchorage out on the trails.
Has anyone else noticed a rise in opportunities to discover female adventurers? Between blogs like Dirtbag Darling, Instagrams like alisontravels, companies like Wylder Goods, and organizations the Outdoor Women’s Alliance there’s a wealth of inspirational content for women who value a life lived outside. A new local creation in this realm is Wander Woman, by Claimjumper AK.
It’s Fur Rondy! Time for all of Anchorage to head downtown for a week+ of wild Alaska-style fun: Running with the Reindeer, Snowshoe Softball, Outhouse Races, and more. This is SO MUCH to do – check out the daily schedule to make sure you don’t miss a thing. I hope you all caught the fireworks last night – they were spectacular. Rondy aside, there’s plenty happening around town this week if you’re looking for a good time.
It was a busy week in Anchortown!
The Northern Lights hotel is finally being demoed, we have a shiny new crop of Top 40 under Forty to celebrate, and two Alaskans were nominated for a James Beard award (known as the culinary world’s Grammys). There’s a new podcast in town for all you dog mushing aficionados – you can listen once a week until the Iditarod, when the schedule switches to once a day.
Five+ years ago my husband and I said “I do.” Our wedding was ridiculously fun and involved a lot of DIY (my maid of honor and her family actually BUILT US A WEDDING WALL complete with photos of our parents and grandparents on their wedding days and my mom made my wedding skirt) and pitching in by family and friends. Of course, plenty of wedding vendors were part of the day as well (favorites were Riza Brown and Josh Martinez, then of Chugach Peaks Photography) and I was lucky to find them (and would choose them 96,797,098,908 times over) during a time when Anchorage event planning felt fairly dated.
Since then, our local wedding scene has exploded with new wedding vendors, offering couples a seemingly endless array of options to create special occasions that effortlessly emphasize their personalities. On February 14, many of them displayed their talents at the Alaska Wedding Collective, an event offering interactive “action stations” to provide a truly special experience for attendees. Although my marrying days are long behind me I enjoyed every moment, probably because the evening felt more like a fun party than a wedding show.
Judging a latte art competition was not on my life list…because I don’t have one. But if I DID, it would have been. And I would have crossed it off as complete last Saturday night after the Alaska Barista Cup, which was one of the most surprising, joyful events I’ve been to in a long time.
Happy Sunday, Anchorage! Whether your plans for the day include curling up with a cup of hot coffee and a good book, playing outside in the snow, or catching up on chores/prepping for the week ahead (or a combination of all three!) take a couple minutes to enjoy a few of the things that make our city so special.
Despite my bent toward optimism, projections about Alaska’s economy are starting to wear on my rosy outlook. I worry that this place I love so much, brimming with the potential to become a “shining city upon a hill” and so full of incredible people working toward a vibrant future might slowly decline and lose its verve. And yet we are far from that, and every day I find new sources of hope.*
Between our wild weather (sub-zero temps to start, then 14+ inches of fluffy new snow to play in…and shovel) and one of the largest gatherings Anchorage has ever seen (democracy in action!), it was a busy week in our little corner of the world. Read on to learn about some fun events coming up (Jan. 27 is going to be busy!), catch up on a few stories around town (Salmon ice cream and golden milk anyone?), and enjoy new art by Corso Graphics (featured above).
Today was the Women’s March on Washington, and Anchorage turned out to the tune of 2,000 – 3,500 people. It was an incredible feeling to be part of such a massive, peaceful movement and I couldn’t stop smiling as we marched in the snow and as I saw photos of events all over the world rolling through my Facebook feed.