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Lisa Demer
After more than a week of drifting through Southwest Alaska down the expansive Kuskokwim River, a crew of men from Stony River arrived in Bethel Saturday afternoon with plans to cut up and sell the very raft they'd floated downriver on.
Tara Young
Hundreds of Anchorage residents of all ages dressed up as characters from anime and video games, movies and manga, and descended on the Egan Civic and Convention Center the weekend of Sept. 27-28 for Senshi-Con, Alaska's largest anime convention. Read more: Anime fans celebrate 'nerd culture' at Senshi-ConWatch this video on Vimeo or YouTube, and be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more great videos. Contact Tara Young at tara(at)alaskadispatch.com.
Devin Kelly
Gamers, manga readers, anime fans and -- of course -- cosplayers gathered in Anchorage the weekend of Sept. 26 for the 10th annual Senshi-Con.
The West girls and boys swept the team competitions at the Cook Inlet Conference cross-country running championships held Saturday, Sept. 27, 2014, at Bartlett High. 
Loren Holmes
Just a few Alaskans still with us today were around in 1914 -- a time of kings and czars, bloodshed and progress, the year that saw the beginnings of Anchorage. 
Alaska Dispatch News

JBER troopes conduct night drop: Probably the coolest video you will see this week

If you've ever wondered what it might look like when U.S. troops use the cover of darkness to insert troops and equipment into a war zone, wonder no more. The 517th Airlift Squadron's C-17 Globemaster III planes lit up the night sky near Anchorage Friday, Sept. 26 as they conducted nighttime drop exercises at the Malemute Drop Zone, just west of Lower Fire Lake.On Saturday, Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson officials released footage of the exercises showing the lumbering cargo planes shooting counter-measure flares into the darkness as they drop troops and equipment, and the result is an eye-catching minute and a half of video, capturing flares bursting like fireworks in the night sky, illuminating the C-17s as they approach the drop zone. 
Alaska Dispatch News
At 41, Tiska the eagle is the oldest animal residing at the Alaska Zoo in Anchorage. Bald eagles typically live to 50 years old, but Tiska is in good health. Tiska was found on Huffman Road back in the 1970s, malnourished and with an injured wing. Tiska has limited flight but loves to sing to passers-by.Watch this video on Vimeo or YouTube, and be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for more great videos. Contact Tara Young at tara(at)alaskadispatch.com.
Alaska Dispatch News

Equinox Marathon winner Matias Saari after winning 2014 race

Matias Saari, 44, last week became the oldest winner in the 52-year history of the Equinox Marathon with his fourth victory since 2007. Meanwhile, Christy Marvin, a 34-year-old Palmer resident, capped off an incredible season by breaking the women's record, with a time of 3 hours, 17 minutes, 10 seconds.​ Read more: Marvin, Saari blaze into Equinox record book
Alaska Dispatch News
A Magnitude 6.24 quake struck near Talkeetna Thursday morning, rattling nerves -- and walls -- across Southcentral Alaska.
Women gather despite the rain to attend a Becoming an Outdoors Woman (BOW) shotgun class held Thursday evening, September 18, 2014, at Rabbit Creek Shooting Park. 
Ash Adams
Whaling crews of Barrow have brought in at least three bowhead whales this week. Men of all ages and a few women gathered to butcher them.
Alaska Dispatch News

Fast Food for Polar Bears | The New York Times

LA PEROUSE BAY, Manitoba -- The sea ice here on the western shore of Hudson Bay breaks up each summer and leaves the polar bears swimming for shore. The image of forlorn bears on small rafts of ice has become a symbol of the dangers of climate change.And for good reason. A warming planet means less ice coverage of the Arctic Sea, leaving the bears with less time and less ice for hunting seals. They depend on seals for their survival.But the polar bears here have discovered a new menu option. They eat snow geese.Because the ice is melting earlier, the bears come on shore earlier, and the timing turns out to be fortunate for them. As a strange side-effect of climate change, polar bears here now often arrive in the midst of a large snow goose summer breeding ground before the geese have hatched and fledged. And with 75,000 pairs of snow geese on the Cape Churchill peninsula - the result of a continuing goose population explosion - there is an abundant new supply of food for the bears.What’s good for the bears, however, has been devastating to the plants and the landscape, with the geese turning large swaths of tundra into barren mud. Nor does it mean the bears are going to be OK in the long run.What is clear is that this long-popular fall destination for polar bear tourism has become a case study in how climate change collides with other environmental changes at the local level and plays out in a blend of domino effects, trade-offs and offsets.“The system is a lot more complicated than anybody thought,” said Robert H. Rockwell, who runs the Hudson Bay Project, a decades-long effort to monitor the environment.READ MORE: For Hudson Bay polar bears, a climate change twist

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