Nikiski community park

Sabine Poux/KDLL

One minute, there are zero rainbow trout in John Hedberg Lake. 

Fewer than 30 seconds later, there are 700.


Sabine Poux/KDLL

Nikiski is a little greener these days. Gardeners have tilled and planted a garden next to the Nikiski Community Park on Hedberg Drive, where volunteers can plant, pick and take home their own produce.

Toni Loop, of Nikiski, has been planning the project for a while and made headway this summer. About a third of the garden is now planted.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

When Toni Loop started working on building a community garden in Nikiski, the price of lumber was a lot lower.

Before the pandemic, she could cover all the costs with a $3,500 grant she had from the Alaska Farm Bureau. But lumber costs have skyrocketed during COVID-19, due to supply shortages and high demand. 

Still, Loop is charging ahead with the project and plans to open it this summer. She wants a garden for people who don’t have their own at home.

Sabine Poux/KDLL

With an entrance off Hedberg Road, the Nikiski Community Park spans a mile from the Kenai Spur to the water. There’s a newly installed bike track and 2.5 miles of walking trails that circle a lake and lead to the bluff. 

And this summer, there was also a good deal of vandalism, said Nikiski Community Council President Jason Ross.