KTNA Studio – Dave Totten, artist

Photo by Deb Wessler

Photo by Dora Miller

KTNA Studio

KTNA On Air Studio, Jan 2013

Photo by Deb Wessler

Photo by James Trump

Winter Black-capped Chickadee

winter chickadee

Photo by Robin Song

Fish Lake morning

Fish Lake morning

photo: Robin Song


Posts from the 'Local News' category

Overdue hiker bound for “Into the Wild” bus found unharmed

Monday, September 12, 2016

An overdue hiker has been found unharmed in Denali National Park.

According to park spokeswoman Katherine Belcher, 45-year-old Carlos Castrejon of Mexico set off alone last Wednesday to visit the abandoned bus that features in the book and film Into the Wild.

Castrejon and a companion had been staying at Riley Creek Campground when he departed Wednesday afternoon. His companion expected Castrejon to return on Saturday. Carlos Castrejon’s companion reported him overdue on Sunday. Ground search teams were dispatched, and he was found unharmed in under twenty-four hours.

According to Katherine Belcher, Castrejon was told by Denali National Park staff that his planned three day trip was not enough time to cover the fifteen miles of difficult terrain each way.


At least two other hikers have been rescued after encountering difficulties on the way to or from the abandoned bus.

Repairs for Talkeetna dike in design phase; Construction could begin next spring

Wednesday, September 7, 2016


Almost four years after the 2012 flood that damaged it, efforts the Talkeetna dike have taken another step forward.

According to an email sent by Mat-Su Borough Emergency Manager Casey Cook to the Talkeetna Community Council board of directors, the request for proposals to design repairs to the dike, located downstream of the railroad bridge over the Talkeetna River, has been approved.


The contract for the repair design was awarded to HDL Engineering Consultants. According to a letter sent by HDL to the community council, a preliminary survey was conducted late last month, and engineers plan to assess damage below the normal summer waterline.

The design is anticipated to be complete in November or December. After that, the design must be approved by the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which has agreed to fund repairs to the dike.

The repair of the Talkeetna dike has taken significantly longer than was anticipated. The Mat-Su Borough went through a successful appeal process to allow the dike to be considered for FEMA funds for the 2012 flood, since it was not initially listed on the borough’s flood management assets map. Since then, the request has gone through multiple layers of federal approval, and any clarification or change requested by FEMA required at least part of that process to start again.

In his letter, Casey Cook says he hopes repairs could be made this fall or winter, but the letter from HDL anticipates construction beginning next spring or later.

Eight candidates nominated for five Talkeetna council seats

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Eight candidates are running for five open seats on the Talkeetna Community Council, Inc. board of directors.


The eight candidates are Joe McAneney, Chris Grabowski, Geri  McCann, Ed O’Connor, Ron Quillian, Christie Seay, Peg Voss, and Jeff Lebegue. None of the eight candidates currently sit on the Talkeetna Community Council board.


It is unusual for five seats to come open at once. The reason for the large number of available seats is due to two mid-term appointments to replace board members who resigned. According to Talkeetna Community Council bylaws, terms filled after a vacancy are up for grabs at the next election. One of the candidates, Chris Grabowski, currently holds a seat that was vacated by former board member Mark Moren.


Two board seats, currently held by Mary Farina and Paul Button, are not up for election this year.


The Talkeetna Community Council election will be held on the same day as the Mat-Su Borough’s election, October 4th.


Current TCCI board chair Whitney Wolff says each candidate provided a brief bio, which will be made publicly available.

Positions open at KTNA

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Talkeetna Community Radio announces an opening for the position of General Manager. The General Manager is the executive position at the station, reporting to a community-elected Board of Directors and supervising a small staff  and a large group of volunteers.   For a complete job description, contact KTNA at  733-1700.  The position is open until filled.

KTNA also has an opening for the position of Development Coordinator.  This position is responsible for KTNA’s membership, underwriting, and special events.  This is a 4 days per week, 6 hours per day position. For a complete job description, contact KTNA at  733-1700.  Deadline to apply is September 23 at 5pm.

Talkeetna airport wood salvage opens to local residents

Friday, September 2, 2016

Katelin Walczyk and Matt Hiller at the public wood salvage for the Talkeetna airport project. Photo: Katie Writer – KTNA

by:  Katie Writer – KTNA

As the Talkeetna State Airport project moves forward, the contract company, AHTNA has opened up the job site to offer locals an opportunity to heat their homes.

KTNA’s Katie Writer spoke with several people on site.

After a rainy past few weeks, the sun has returned just in time for the local wood salvage at the Takeetna State Airport. Thousands of trees were downed for the airport expansion and AHTNA is offering locals access to the project for free firewood for a two week period. Hours of operation are  from 8 am – 6 pm, Monday thru Sunday, though closed September 4th and 5th in observance of Labor Day.  (more…)

Mat-Su Health Foundation names local man as Bert Hall Award winner

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

by:  Katie Writer – KTNA

Each year, the Mat-Su Health Foundation presents it’s Bert Hall, or “Bertie” award to an individual who the organization believes “exemplifies commitment to improving the health and wellness of Mat-Su residents.” This year’s recipient of the Bertie is Upper Valley resident Herman Thompson. Thompson spoke with KTNA’s Katie Writer about his efforts in community service.


Recent thefts in Trapper Creek include two “Wounded Warrior” donation jars

Thursday, August 25, 2016

The Alaska State Troopers are looking for information regarding multiple thefts in Trapper Creek. On August 5th, Troopers responded to a business after a report of burglary and theft of tools. Alaska State Trooper spokeswoman Megan Peters later identified the business as “Wal-Mike’s,” which is near Mile 115 of the Parks Highway. While at the scene, Troopers were told about other thefts in the area from July onward. One of the items stolen in an earlier theft was a jar with approximately $400 in it that Troopers were told was a donation jar for a charity supporting wounded soldiers.

On the morning of August 20th, Troopers were again called to Wal-Mike’s after another donation jar for wounded soldiers was stolen. This time, the jar is estimated to have contained approximately $300.

Megan Peters says there have been multiple thefts in the area in recent months. Troopers ask that anyone with information call Crime Stoppers at 745-3333 or Alaska State Trooper dispatch at 352-5401.

Su Valley Principal discusses new school year, school programs

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Each year brings new faces to Su Valley Junior and Senior High School. This year, that includes Principal David Booth. KTNA’s Katie Writer spoke with Booth about his outlook on the new school year.

Talkeetna sewer lagoon tests improve over last year, but not consistently in permit limits

Monday, August 22, 2016

While the issues facing Talkeetna’s sewer lagoon have seen significant improvement over last year, the system remains out of compliance with its state permit.


For each of the last four months, tests conducted for fecal coliform bacteria in the water flowing out of the lagoon have been lower, in some cases more than five times lower, than results from 2015. In two months, May and July, the results meet the requirements of the lagoon’s permit from the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation. In June and August, tests of the system are out of compliance, though August’s results are not yet official.


This year marks the third summer in which the lagoon has had results out of compliance. This year, the Mat-Su Borough’s Public Works Department has taken a number of steps to bring the system closer to compliance. Starting this spring, borough staff worked to replant the constructed wetlands that wastewater flows through after treatment. The wetlands are designed to provide natural cleaning of the water before it enters the Talkeetna River. Those wetlands were damaged in the 2006 flood.