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Prep girls hockey players from Anchorage and Fairbanks face off in a state tournament beginning Thursday, Jan. 29, 2015, at Dempsey Anderson Ice Arena in Anchorage. 
Alaska Dispatch News
For four consecutive days this week, people in Anchorage woke up to news of a local shooting resulting in death or injury. At a press conference Thursday, police chief Mark Mew said the jump in violence appears to be drug-related and announced the department is creating a temporary task force in an effort to suppress those crimes.
Alaska Dispatch News
Lofoten is a traditional district in the county of Nordland, Norway. At 68 degrees north latitude, above the Arctic Circle, Lofoten is known for its majestic landscapes. Filmmaker Jordan Whipps went there in March expecting to shoot green-covered mountains but instead found himself shooting snowy scenics and spectacular auroras.
Marc Lester


For four consecutive days this week, people in Anchorage woke up to news of a local shooting resulting in death or injury. At a press conference Thursday, police chief Mark Mew said the jump in violence appears to be drug-related and announced the department is creating a temporary task force in an effort to suppress those crimes.“Of the four homicides, all of them are connected to marijuana, as well as other drugs,” Mew said. “Something’s going on in the drug world right now.”The task force will consist of 10 to 15 officers pulled from three special units. The officers will be reassigned “for a week or two,” he said, “shaking down everything that moves on the street” and “serving warrants like crazy.”Mew also said the police department has contacted federal law enforcement in the hope of conducting a combined crack down. It would be similar to the FBI’s Safe Streets Violent Crime Initiative in 2007, when groups of field officers focused on gang violence and violent crimes.Some of the shootings appear to involve gangs, Mew said.Read more: Anchorage police creating task force in wake of drug-related shootingsRead more: APD: Man dead in East Anchorage shooting early Thursday morningWatch this video on YouTube, and subscribe to our YouTube channel for more videos.
Doyle Woody
The Alaska Aces defeated the Colorado Eagles 5-4 on Wednesday night at Sullivan Arena.
Marc Lester
More than 50 agencies and organizations and about 150 volunteers gathered at the Menard Center in Wasilla to contribute to the Mat-Su Valley Homeless Connect event held Wednesday, Jan. 28, 2015.
Colleen Mondor

B-25J Sandbar Mitchell Center Section Disassembly Time-lapse

The Warbirds of Glory Museum has released a video showing its progress on the restoration of a B-25 bomber that crashed in 1969 while operating for the fire service, but which was recovered in 2013 near the Tanana River and has become known as the "Sandbar Mitchell." Museum founders Patrick Mihalek and Todd Trainor spearheaded efforts to remove the plane from the its remote location and have since been working with a group of volunteers to restore it in their shop in Brighton, Mich.While the video highlights some of the hands-on work accomplished since the aircraft was transported to the Lower 48, Mihalek stressed in a recent phone conversation that even more significantly, the museum now has tax exempt status as a 501(c)(3) public charity. That means donations are tax-deductible, which he hopes will spur contributors to help fund their efforts."Our biggest challenge is fundraising," explains Mihalek, "which is crucial because our current location can not accommodate the rebuild of a B-25 and we will have to relocate the museum soon."There is a larger airport nearby that will suit the aircraft's space requirements both for the current rebuild and future flight. It will also allow the museum to be open to the public throughout the restoration process, which is a significant part of Mihalek's vision. Though they are currently also working on a recently donated World War II Link Trainer for display, there isn't adequate room to allow many visitors. The museum needs a solid endowment to finance the transition to a fully open and working facility that highlights the bomber, which will soon be undergoing the first steps to return it to its original condition."Our next job is to rebuild the top section," said Mihalek. He believes the original section was removed by scavengers sometime in the 1990s and his frustration over the damage done by this removal is palpable."If they had only cut it a little higher we wouldn't have the problems we have now putting the new section in place," he said. The new section comes from another B-25, but some metal fabrication will have to be done to bring the two parts together. Because the museum is determined to bring the Sandbar Mitchell back to airworthy status, that fabrication, like every other facet of the restoration, won't be cheap."The project has taken off in ways I never dreamed of," said Mihalek, whose plans for the Mitchell and the museum to showcase it stretch back more than 10 years. "So many young people have become involved and are such a valuable part of what we are trying to do here. It's amazing."All of those young people came to the museum after finding about it on their own, and have proven critical to the disassembly process, he said. Of the 14 volunteers in the video, 10 are under the age of 20, a fact that is especially impressive in the midst of so many doomsayer articles from the aviation industry about the aging population of pilots and mechanics."We just want to keep working on the plane and the museum and have this project be as open to the public as possible," Mihalek said. "There are only about twenty B-25s flying in the U.S. today; the Sandbar Mitchell is an important part of Alaska and aviation history and we look forward in continuing to get it back in the air."Keep up with the Warbirds of Glory Museum's efforts to fly the Sandbar Mitchell again at its website. Patrick Mihalek is also happy to speak with anyone about the project and their efforts to save this legendary aircraft.Contact Colleen Mondor at colleen[at]
Alaska Dispatch News

Moose calling in Fairbanks, Alaska

Though many Alaskans -- either knowingly or unknowingly -- live within close proximity of moose, only some have ever actually heard a moose call.Karen Wilken with HooDoo Brewing Company in Fairbanks has, after she found three moose feeding in her yard this past week. One was calling out loudly to the others, maybe chatting about the 40-below-zero temperatures. 
Tara Young

The Wash Off !

When it comes to extreme sports, vertical skiing, BASE jump, kite surfing, paragliding and an assortment of others spring to mind.Fishing?  Not so much. Lean back, launch a lazy cast, pop open a beer, await a strike. But the Australian anglers of an outfit called MorningTide Fishing are changing that, landing big fish from a treacherous rocky shoreline Down Under while fending off waves in a surf that never quits.“We would watch fishing shows on TV and compare them to the way we fished,” said MorningTide angler Aaron Briggs of Barmah in New South Wales. “What we found was it would never add up.“We're trying to catch tuna, mackerel, and other pelagics from the rocks and we’re constantly getting hammered by waves and hooking solid fish ... Basically our average days fishing were so much more exciting then a whole season of the best fishing shows on the telly, so a light just went off in our heads and we said we gotta make a fishing show.”They fish the east coast of the continent from New South Wales to Queensland, landing yellowfin tuna up to 35 pounds, sharks, cobia and other fish.“To be honest, we’ve lost our biggest hookups,” Briggs told Grind TV. “It’s heartbreaking.”Still, they release most of their catch unless a fish is obviously injured.What sets MorningTide videos apart is that the anglers sometimes plunge into the salt water with their prey when their line gets hung up.“We jump in when a fish has run us into a reef but we’re still connected to the fish,” Briggs told Grind TV.  “That has to be one of the worst feelings in fishing – where if you tighten up, you’re going to snap your line, and if you leave it loose, you’re going to get spooled. If there’s still a chance of landing the fish, we’ll jump in (to attempt to free the line).”Most of the MorningTide anglers have been around water and surfed most of their lives. They wear wetsuits for safety, but not life vests nor helmets. “Our take on life vests is they are amazing if you can’t swim, but would be very dangerous for us because, well, what’s the first thing you do if a set (of waves) is going to land on your head?  Dive as deep as you can and swim out past it.  The last thing we want is to be unable to swim under waves,” Briggs said.  “A helmet might be a good idea, though.”How about motoring farther offshore beyond the crashing waves in a boat, like most of the world does?“We see boats as cheating,” Briggs said.  “The feeling of landing a fish off the stones is so much better than a boat.”With the group’s photos and videos getting more and more exposure on the Internet, the Aussies are using their platform to promote catch-and-release fishing.“Frankly, there aren't a hell of a lot of fish left in the sea,” Briggs said. “We hope that if people see that we (land-based game fishermen that expend lots of energy on every fish) are willing to release our fish, then maybe they will look at their own actions as a fishermen and adopt a C&R style, or at least reduce what they keep.“For the non fishermen who is a consumer, we hope they will take a second to think about the fish they are buying and what is and isn't sustainable, what is and isn't endangered, what is farmed and what is wild.”Other MorningTide videos:• Catch and release mission:• Only a fisherman knows: Alaska Dispatch News videographer Tara Young at tara(at) 
Alaska Dispatch News
For the first time in 29 years, a hometown Bethel musher captured the world’s premier middle distance race when Peter Kaiser’s team of nine dogs crossed the finish line before dawn Sunday to the whoops and cheers of dozens of emotional fans who turned out to cheer him home. Dean Swope and Ben Matheson captured the race and the notable finish for KYUK Public Media, which serves listeners in Alaska’s Yukon-Kuskokwim Delta.Read more: Bethel cheers as hometown musher Kaiser wins richest Kusko 300 ever
Alaska Dispatch News

Rockets Launched into the Northern Lights in 4K Ultra HD

Around midnight Sunday, with conditions just right, researchers launched four rockets from the the University of Alaska’s Poker Flat Research Range, northeast of Fairbanks, into an aurora-bedecked sky.The rockets were designed to help researchers learn more about turbulence in the upper atmosphere and at the margin where the atmosphere meets space.But they were also beautiful in juxtaposition with the bright northern lights display, as photographer and videographer Ronn Murray, who shares this video, discovered.READ MORE: 'Four rockets launch from UAF research range'
The New York Times
The 23 inches of snow that had blanketed Boston by Tuesday night hoisted the storm into the ranks of the 10 worst -- or best, if you were a dog frolicking alongside a skier on the Boston Common.