'KEN-ick' river?: A new clip for the upcoming film "The Frozen Ground" was released Wednesday, and while some Alaskans might be excited to their home state represented, that pride could be short-lived. Star Nicolas Cage immediately butchers the pronunciation of "Knik" -- the name of a silty river outside of Anchorage where serial killer Robert Hansen (played by John Cusack) pursued his victims -- despite the fact that he's sitting next to longtime Anchorage TV meteorologist Robert Forgit. Filmed in Anchorage, the movie will be released widely in August. Early reviews have been mixed.
Mythic Alaska weather report: The big-city Washington Post clearly hasn't been following the Alaska weather report. On Tuesday, it featured a story about how lucky the National Association of State Budget Officers (NASBO) is to be holding its annual meeting in "cool Alaska." With the bean-counters in Anchorage, Alaskans can only hope they're meeting in one of the city's air-conditioned buildings, because those without are downright hot. After a suffering a "spring from hell," Anchorage has been enduring an unusual patch of temperatures in the 70s, and solar radiation from a glaring Midnight Sun shining in a cloudless sky can quickly heat buildings, car interiors, south-facing decks and other surfaces to far higher temperatures.
C'mon, just bring Chucky back: A family from Louisiana traveling in Alaska is searching for a doll that rode on the front of their truck all the way up, only to be stolen in Kenai. The doll, a scarred, windblown version of Chucky from the horror movie "Child's Play," was allegedly stolen while the truck was parked at a Kenai grocery store. According to a Tuesday Craigslist posting seeking the doll's safe return, the thief "made three little girls very sad." The advertisement seeks the safe return of the doll, but it references a Liam Neeson speech from the 2008 movie "Taken" to describe what could happen should the doll thief be caught. The appeal ends with words of caution for the public: "On the off chance that Chucky escaped then I suggest those in Kenai be cautious and aware as he may be armed and dangerous."
Choose Respect or face a jury: The Anchorage Daily News reports that state prosecutors will no longer offer plea deals to suspects accused of sexual assault or sexual abuse of a minor, domestic violence or other "serious felonies." It's a significant shift for Alaska's criminal justice system that comes in the wake of some recent, high-profile sex-abuse cases and in consultation with Gov. Sean Parnell, whose made eradicating sexual violence and assault a centerpiece of his administration through the "Choose Respect" campaign, thought by some to be unfairly harsh on Alaska Natives.
Thirty seconds of heaven: Surfing isn't for everyone. In Alaska, it's hardly for anyone. But those who do head out to Turnagain Arm, south of Alaska's largest city, find epic backwash each month the water's flowing -- from June until September, basically -- and the moon is full. Ask Kris Swanson, who caught a 30-second ride during this week's full-moon fever.