Sabine Poux

Reporter/evening news host
Courtesy of Hannah Etengoff

To most Alaskans, it’s food. To some, a livelihood. To others, a sport. No matter how you slice it, or filet it, salmon is deeply important to Alaskans. And salmon lovers across the state, like Steve Schoonmaker, of Kasilof, are celebrating the species today.

“First of all, I’m waking up and I’m remembering what Alaska Salmon Day means," he said. "And how lucky we are in Alaska to have wild salmon.”

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Alaska’s largest newspaper is no longer delivering print copies to the Kenai Peninsula. The Anchorage Daily News delivered its last physical newspaper to the area last week after it became too expensive to send papers south of Girdwood, said Daily News Circulation Manager Mark Wasser.

Wasser said the Daily News saw a 60 percent decline in print subscribers from the Kenai Peninsula in the last decade, as more started reading the paper online. And he said, amid high transportation costs, print delivery no longer made economic sense for the company.

Courtesy of Doug Blossom

Kenai Peninsula set-netters were already having a bad summer, following the early closure of their fishery earlier last month.

That situation turned from bad to worse for four set-net families late last week when their beach sites in Clam Gulch were vandalized. Alaska State Troopers said they have since identified and charged the vandals, two juveniles, through their posts on social media.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Borough Mayor Charlie Pierce said the current process for appointing city representatives to the borough’s planning commission needs an update. He drafted an ordinance that outlines several suggestions to revamp the code last month.

But representatives from borough cities worry those changes would take what’s historically been a city decision and place it in the hands of the borough. 

Alaska State Troopers

A Niksiki motorcyclist died in a collision on the Kenai Spur Highway Wednesday evening, according to the Alaska State Troopers.

Troopers said 40-year-old Martin Marlin was driving his motorcycle near mile 18 of the Kenai Spur a little after 5 p.m. when he collided with a Nissan SUV that was turning in front of him.

Photo Sabine Poux/KDLL

The Kenai Municipal Airport is is the first thing a lot of people see when they get into town.

So it’s important that it looks good. And it’s much more up-to-date now, after a nearly $14 million remodel that wrapped up last spring. 

The city is cutting the ribbon on the updated terminal this week. 


Elizabeth Earl / KDLL

Researchers and the Cooperative Extension Service want to know how the pandemic and the 2019 Swan Lake Fire impacted food resilience on the Kenai Peninsula.

Courtney Long is a PhD student at Iowa State University. She said the study on the peninsula is one of five she’s conducting in rural communities across the country. 

Central Peninsula Hospital is celebrating a half century in business this year.

But for a long time, the hospital was just an idea — one spurred by the central peninsula’s growing population but stalled over intense community rivalries and funding drama.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Face masks will not be required in Kenai Peninsula Borough schools when classes start up again this month — contrary to new recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention that schools universally require masks amid the more contagious Delta variant.

The mask policy is part of the district’s new COVID-19 mitigation plan for the upcoming school year.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

The Kenai Peninsula Borough is bringing in $5 million more in sales tax revenue than it forecasted in the early days of the pandemic, with an estimated $30.3 million coming in for fiscal year 2021.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Lydia Jacoby left Tokyo, Japan this weekend with another Olympic medal. The 17-year-old Seward swimmer won silver for her role in the women’s 400-meter medley relay Saturday, where she swam the second leg of the race and logged a time of 1:05.03.

It’s Jacoby’s second medal of the Olympics. She won gold for her surprise victory in the women’s 100-meter breaststroke last week.

Mitch Michaud

U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski and the Kenai Peninsula Borough have submitted a funding request to address spruce bark beetle kill on the peninsula — the latest effort to curb the ongoing beetle kill crisis that’s destroyed spruce forests across Southcentral. 

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Seward and the rest of Alaska watched proudly Monday when 17-year-old Lydia Jacoby won Olympic gold in the women's 100-meter breaststroke.

Lydia’s parents, Rich and Leslie Jacoby, were watching, too, with other Olympian families in Orlando, Fla.

Rich, a maritime instructor for AVTEC, said they’ve been catching up with their gold medalist over the phone. And he said the last few days have been really exciting.

Alaska Department of Fish and Game

Officials are telling campers not to tent camp at the Crescent Creek Campground in Cooper Landing after a series of encounters involving a food-conditioned black bear. They’re asking campground visitors to stick to hard-sided vehicles, like cars and RVs, until the bear is no longer a problem.

The service has received repeated reports of a black bear rifling through campers’ tents for food and walking through the campground, said Forest Service Spokesperson Alan Brown.

Photo: Sabine Poux/KDLL

When an 8.2-magnitude earthquake hit near the Alaska Peninsula Wednesday, local alert systems sprang into action, beeping, buzzing and blaring to notify Alaskans in coastal communities they should get to higher ground.

Those notification systems require lots of preparation and funding well before a tsunami threat hits, explained Dan Nelson, emergency manager with the Kenai Peninsula Borough’s Office of Emergency Management.

Kenai is more than just home to Christine Cunningham and Steve Meyer. It's also where the duo — and their eight dogs — have been recreating and hunting for years. They write about their adventures in a weekly column for the Anchorage Daily News.

We had them on the show to talk about their philosophies on hunting, how they document their trips while still staying in the moment and their thoughts on "type 2 fun."

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Jury trials have again been suspended in the Kenai and Homer courts, due to the recent rise in COVID-19 cases in the Kenai Peninsula Borough.

The order comes just three months after the courts restarted jury trials. Before that, they were put on hold for a year amid concerns about bringing jurors into the courtroom during the pandemic.

Courtesy of ADEC

A truck carrying crude oil from BlueCrest Energy, near Anchor Point, spilled an estimated 900 gallons of oil in Happy Valley on Tuesday morning, in a head-on collision that injured three people.

Officials from the Alaska Department of Environmental Conservation said the leak did not reach any nearby wetlands or immediately impact nearby wildlife. They said the site has since been blocked and a crew is removing the affected soil to be remediated.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Seward’s Lydia Jacoby became an Olympic champion last night in Japan. The 17-year-old swimmer placed first in the 100-meter breaststroke, beating record holders and earning the state its very first Olympic swimming medal.

Back home, it felt like the whole town of Seward was watching.


Sabine Poux/KDLL

Outside the walls of Central Peninsula Hospital, in local parks, restaurants and bars, life is going on without masks or social distancing.

But the coronavirus spike inside the hospital shows the virus is hardly a thing of the past.

Alaska State Troopers

A California woman died in a three-car crash on the Sterling Highway near Kasilof this weekend, according to the Alaska State Troopers.

Troopers say 60-year-old Nancy Virlee Christiansen of Emerald Hills, California was driving north in a blue 2019 Hyundai around 6:30 p.m. Sunday when she crossed the center line and crashed with a black 2016 Nissan Murano, around milepost 111. Christiansen’s car then collided head-on with a red 2016 Chevrolet pickup.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

At best, the lack of nearby parking in downtown Soldotna every Wednesday in the summer is a nuisance for marketgoers.

But Soldotna Wednesday Market organizer Annette Villa said it can also drive away customers.

“When they drive through and there’s no parking spots, then they tend to leave," she said.

Photo: Sabine Poux/KDLL

Seafood in Southcentral Alaska for the most part means fish.

But there’s another growing seafood sector in the region, taking shape in shellfish and kelp farms. The Alaska Mariculture Task Force, convened by former Gov. Bill Walker in 2016, just released its recommendations on how to turn the new industry into booming business.


Sabine Poux/KDLL

A heat wave in the Lower 48 cooked shellfish alive on Pacific Northwest beaches and triggered excessive-heat warnings in several states. Climatologists say it’s because of a dome of heat that drove temperatures high above 100 degrees Fahrenheit and even skirted part of Southeast Alaska.

Southcentral Alaska hasn’t seen that kind of heat. But could scorching heat waves be in the region’s future?

Alaska State Troopers

A Soldotna man is facing murder and other felony charges after allegedly fleeing from the scene of a rollover crash that authorities said killed his passenger and injured two others in the car.

Alaska State Troopers said 50-year-old David Casey was driving in the early morning hours of Saturday after leaving a Kenai bar. Court filings said he lost control of a 2017 Audi on a curve and rolled over, fatally injuring a passenger who was ejected from the vehicle on Forest Lane outside Soldotna.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

The current surge in COVID-19 cases nationwide is powered in part by a more contagious strain of the virus. But health officials are recommending more of the same.

"Get vaccinated, wear a mask, stay away from large gatherings," said Kenai Public Health Nurse Tami Marsters. "Just the same that nobody wants to hear.”

Sabine Poux/KDLL

Soldotna Rotary is celebrating a decade of beer. It’s holding its 10th annual Kenai Peninsula Beer Festival next month, with lots of familiar craft brew faces — from Kenai River Brewing, Kassik's and St. Elias on the central peninsula, to Cooper Landing Brewery and Palmer’s Bleeding Heart.

Matthew Pyhala with Soldotna Rotary helped get the beer festival started.

Photo: Sabine Poux/KDLL

When you start laying out the expenses line by line, a weekend of dipnetting doesn’t sound so cheap.

How much does it cost Kelly and Larry Williams?

“A ton! I was just thinking about that," said Kelly Williams. "We’ve spent, like, hundreds of dollars already and we haven’t gotten anything."


Choosing Our Roots

An Alaska nonprofit is looking for hosts on the Kenai Peninsula to house homeless queer youth.

Choosing Our Roots matches volunteers with LGBTQ+ individuals between ages 13 and 24 who otherwise don’t have access to safe housing. The organization is now looking for hosts for six young people on the Kenai Peninsula who are either houseless or couch surfing, said Kat Banner, a volunteer coordinator for the organization.

You don't have to know a lot about fishing to know that dipnet season is back in Kenai.

But if you do want to learn more about the fishing that makes the city a summer destination for AK anglers, we've got you covered. This week's Kenai Converstaion is a 2020 online presentation from the Alaska Department of Fish and Game on the basics of dipnetting, from what to bring to how to avoid a ticket.

In the second part of the presentation, how to navigate the personal use fisheries in the Kenai, Kasilof and China Poot fisheries.

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