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Heather Hintze

I’m a Montana girl, born and raised. Alaska was never really a place I considered working. Then, a job opening came up and I thought, “Why not?” I’m always up for an adventure and so far the Last Frontier has yet to disappoint.

Stories by Heather Hintze

  • State

    Dam expansion increases Sitka’s power production

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 24, 19:44

    The Blue Lake Project in Sitka is set to dramatically increase the production of hydroelectricity for the city. Five miles out of town, up a one-lane dirt road, tucked into the mountains, construction crews work on the expansion in the windy canyon. The project is so massive it takes Alaska’s largest, 600-ton crane to make […]

  • State

    Totem pole artist carves out a piece of history

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 23, 21:28

    A totem pole isn’t just a work of art for Tommy Joseph; it’s carving out a little piece of history. “That’s what a totem pole is all about is I’m telling someone’s story,” he said. “Everyone has a story.” On a warm morning in Sitka, he methodically chips away at a 10-foot cedar pole. He […]

  • State

    Sitka family turns home brews into booming business

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 22, 18:05

    It’s 5 p.m. on a Friday in Sitka and Baranof Island Brewing Company‘s tasting room is packed. Residents are lined up out the door to get a taste of the brewery’s new Pumpkin Ale. The brewing company’s owners say business has come along way in just three years. “It’s been an overwhelming response,” said owner Rick […]

  • State

    Orphaned cubs find a home at Fortress of the Bear

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 21, 17:40

    One look at Sitka’s Fortress of the Bear and it’s easy to see how the rescue facility got its name. Brown bears roam around the two large tanks leftover from Sitka’s pulp mill that closed in 1993. “We’ve managed to upcycle these strong, industrial spaces into some really impressive bear habitats,” said bear manager Claire Turner. […]

  • State

    Girl Scouts bring special-needs shopping carts to Sitka

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 20, 19:46

    For those who have children with special needs, everything is a bit more challenging. Recently, Sitka resident Jeff Bentley brought his daughter, Jema, along on a trip to the grocery store. The five-year-old has epilepsy and cerebral palsy. “Jema, you want to sit in the cart?” Bentley asked her. The father says even a trip to […]

  • State

    Sitka Sound Science Center gets $1.3 million facelift

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 20, 9:17

    Hundreds of Sitka residents turned out to get a look at the newly renovated Sitka Sound Science Center, which got a $1.3 million facelift. “Today we’re here to remember the past, appreciate this very moment and look to the future,” said Executive Director Lisa Busch. The Sage Memorial Building was originally built in 1929 as […]

  • Local

    Sitka roller derby team welcomes competition in first home bout

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 20, 8:29

    It was a sold-out crowd of 400 fans for the Sitka Sound Slayers as they took on the Wrangell Garnet Grit Betties. The bout was the first time a team from Alaska traveled to the small southeast community. The women started Sitka’s roller derby team less than two years ago. Players said they’re thrilled it’s […]

  • State

    Drums, bagpipes for Alaska Day in Sitka

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 18, 21:09

    Alaska Day in Sitka wouldn’t be complete without a special musical treat from the Lower 48. For the ninth year, the Seattle Firefighters Pipes and Drums flew up for the festivities. Alaska Day, Oct. 18, marks the exchange between Russia and the United States for the land that would later become the 49th state. The […]

  • State

    Sitka celebrates Alaska Day

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 18, 18:31

    Alaska Day, Oct. 18, marks the day the United States officially purchased the land of the Last Frontier. The transfer from Russia happened in Sitka in 1867. For 65 years, the town has been celebrating with weeklong festivities. On Saturday, most of the town lined Lincoln Street for the annual parade. “The band performances are great […]

  • Local

    Anchorage schools face substitute teacher shortfall

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 16, 22:31

    First grade teacher Jaclyn Robertson didn’t plan on playing math football with her class on Thursday. With five extra students added at the last minute, though, she had to change to lesson plan on the fly. “We try to create a welcoming environment for those students to come in and feel comfortable to learn,” Robertson […]

  • State

    Nome pushes for deep-water port to alleviate dredging demands

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 14, 17:40

    As the 2014 gold mining season comes to a close, there are just a few dredges remaining in the Bering Sea outside the city of Nome. Many miners have already pulled their vessels after an extremely busy year. “These two are rafted two-deep right now,” said Nome harbormaster Lucas Stotts as he pointed out two […]

  • State

    Nome schools revive Inupiaq language

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 13, 18:21

    On a school day in Nome, a class of second graders at Nome Elementary School gathers around Annie Conger as she begins her cultural studies lesson. Conger is reading “Neeluk : An Eskimo Boy in the Days of the Whaling Ships.” “Last time, they had to wake up really early to get ready for Kotzebue,” […]

  • State

    Thermal-imaging cameras help with rescue efforts in rural areas

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 13, 14:43

    Search-and-rescue crews around Nome have a new tool to work with, thanks to a $150,000 grant. The Norton Sound Economic Development Corporation purchased 16 thermal-imaging cameras earlier this year. Alaska State Troopers in Nome distributed the cameras to troopers and village public safety officers in surrounding communities. The cameras are equipped with “FLIR” or forward-looking […]

  • State

    Nome students’ culinary adventure: pickling muktuk

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 10, 20:44

    It’s a home economics lesson you’ll only find in Alaska. “It’s fun,” said Sadie Ellison, smiling. “I like the feeling and how it’s all oily.” On a Friday in early October, Nome Elementary School fifth graders spent their afternoon wielding ulus and cutting up muktuk. “Muktuk is kind of a fishy, acquired taste,” Tom Gray […]

  • State

    Nome wind farm cuts energy costs, carbon footprint

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 09, 21:28

    On a blustery day in Nome the wind turbines on Banner Hill are working hard, spinning quickly and cutting through the strong gusts. There are 18 smaller turbines owned by Sitnasuak Native Corporation and the Bering Straits Native Corporation. The City of Nome expanded the wind farm a few years ago, purchasing two larger turbines. […]

  • State

    In Nome, reading program helps kids improve literacy

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 08, 18:28

    It doesn’t take much time spent with Jeff Collins to see he has a real passion for teaching students and helping them improve their reading skills. “For beginning readers, fluency and comprehension are the biggest obstacles they have,” said Collins, one of Nome Elementary School’s Title I teachers. After his students read a story, they then […]

  • State

    Nome Eskimo Community launches social media campaign for students

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 07, 17:21

    It all started with a simple hashtag: #mychoicemyfuture. It’s part of Nome Eskimo Community’s new social media campaign, made possible by a grant from the Department of Justice. “We’re going down to their terms and speaking their language,” said NEC youth services specialist Niaomi Brunette. “Kids use social media every day, and it’s a tool […]

  • State

    Call-in show connects radio station to Western Alaska community

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 06, 19:17

    On a Thursday in October in Western Alaska, KNOM radio host Kristin Leffler introduces her call-in show. “Hello and welcome to Sounding Board,” she said in a smooth voice fit for radio. The New Hampshire native moved to Nome a month ago for her first job out of college. In her short stint at the radio station, she’s already […]

  • News

    Volunteers, police work to keep Nome residents safe during PFD time

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 03, 20:07

    “It’s a pretty positive thing,” Marjorie Tahbone explained to her friends. “People are pretty excited to see us and they’re usually happy. We get a lot of hugs and high fives.” Just after midnight on Thursday, Tahbone rallied her safety patrol volunteers. “Our job is to make sure if there is someone there that we […]

  • Money

    Putting PFD funds to use in remote Alaska

    by Heather Hintze on Oct 02, 20:39

    The steady stream of shoppers at Hanson’s Safeway in Nome on Thursday included many regulars just there for their weekly groceries. Others, like Polly Tocktoo, came to the hub city to put their PFD dollars to good use. “It’s pretty rare for us to come into Nome to shop because airlines are so expensive,” Tocktoo […]