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Rhonda McBride

Alaska truly is the Last Frontier of great storytelling. Although I’ve been a reporter in Alaska since 1988, my “to do” list of stories is ever a work in progress.

Stories by Rhonda McBride

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    Derelict cabin in Fairview is no longer a magnet for trouble

    by Rhonda McBride on May 20, 20:48

    When it comes to the homeless, many Anchorage residents are torn between feeling sympathetic and, in the case of one Fairview neighborhood, feeling afraid. But near the corner of East 9th Avenue and Denali Street, there are feelings of relief. After pressure from the city, Fairview Community Council and neighbors, a crew cleared land around […]

  • Outdoors

    In Unalakleet, sea ice is a hunter’s best friend

    by Rhonda McBride on May 13, 22:21

    Sea ice helps to put dinner on the table for hunters in the Bering Sea, and it’s sorely missed by Norton Sound communities like Unalakleet. Alaska had one of the warmest winters of the century. The statewide average temperature was about 10 degrees above historic norms – and weather experts say the trend seems to […]

  • News

    Frontiers: UAF Rural Human Services Program, a pipeline for success

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 22, 21:32

    The Rural Human Services Program at the University of Alaska Fairbanks is many things to many students. But mainly it’s a pipeline to success. Many of those in the program are older and are raising children, but the college works around this with a flexible two-year program, allowing students to travel to Fairbanks, Anchorage or […]

  • Alaska News

    Frontiers Preview: Shattering the silence

    by Rhonda McBride on Apr 08, 21:59

    Drama students at the University of Alaska Anchorage have brought an ambitious production to the stage, “Stalking the Bogeyman,” written by a well-known local journalist David Holthouse. The play puts Holthouse’s painful memories of a childhood rape in the spotlight. He was only 7 years old when a teenager lured him to the basement and […]

  • Iditarod

    Artist Jon Van Zyle’s Iditarod legacy

    by Rhonda McBride on Mar 07, 8:44

    The Iditarod legacy largely comes from the mushers and the dogs. But there are volunteers and others like Jon Van Zyle, who have made their mark. In Episode 45 of Frontiers, we take time out to appreciate Van Zyle’s legacy, as both a musher and an artist. When he returned from his first Iditarod in […]

  • Iditarod

    The Comeback Trail: DeeDee Jonrowe & Jan Steves

    by Rhonda McBride on Mar 03, 15:02

    The Iditarod has become a never-ending story. Every year, from the front of the trail to the back of the trail, there are new chapters about stamina and endurance — and the powerful bond between dogs and humans. In Episode 44 of Frontiers, we profiled two mushers from Willow, DeeDee Jonrowe and Jan Steves. Both […]

  • Alaska News

    Chocolate-covered strawberries a Valentine’s Day hit in Nome

    by Rhonda McBride on Feb 12, 20:05

    Most of Nome’s urban creature comforts come to town on a jet. Locals usually load up when they’re in Anchorage, which is common to Alaska bush life. “We travel with tubs,” said Trinh Johnson, who was just returning to Nome on a flight from Anchorage. “We don’t have luggage.” The impulse to stock up is […]

  • Alaska Politics

    Sen. Kelly wants to revamp Alaska budget process

    by Rhonda McBride on Jan 24, 17:49

    A Fairbanks Republican says he hopes to introduce a plan to streamline the Legislature’s budgeting process early next week. Given the magnitude of the state’s fiscal crisis, Kelly said change is long overdue. “If we try to do things as we’ve always done them, we will run out of time and not really accomplish anything,” […]

  • Only in Alaska

    Russian Orthodox Christmas in Alaska: A multicultural, multilingual celebration

    by Rhonda McBride on Jan 09, 10:14

    Although most Alaskans celebrate Christmas on Dec. 25, members of the Russian Orthodox Church started their weeklong celebration on Jan. 7 – the date of Christ’s birth, according to the Julian calendar. In many Alaska communities, the festivities are known as “Slaaviq” or “Slavi” – slang for the Russian word for glory, “slava.” The traditions vary […]

  • Alaska News

    2015: A year of quiet reforms for the Alaska National Guard

    by Rhonda McBride on Jan 01, 20:17

    The 2015 elections brought shocking revelations about the Alaska National Guard. Allegations of sexual assault and other corruption grabbed the headlines during the race for governor, after victims and whistleblowers said their complaints had been ignored for years. Since the election and the appointment of Laurie Hummel as Adjutant General — the first female commander […]

  • Web Exclusives

    Galena elder Sidney Huntington dies, leaves 100-year legacy

    by Rhonda McBride on Dec 08, 17:19

    Sidney Huntington celebrated his 100th birthday in Galena in May, surrounded by family members and an entire community. Family members said he died peacefully Tuesday afternoon at an assisted living facility in Galena. Huntington’s autobiography, Shadows on the Koyukuk, tells the story of how he lived between two worlds, relying on his Koyukon-Athabascan heritage of […]

  • Alaska News

    Aftermath of Bethel school fire: New facility considered

    by Rhonda McBride on Nov 13, 22:19

    It’s only been 10 days since an early morning fire destroyed a building which housed Bethel’s Yup’ik language immersion program and the Kuskokwim Learning Academy, an alternative regional boarding school. But the Lower Kuskokwim School District is moving quickly to get students out of temporary classrooms at the district headquarters and at Gladys Jung Elementary […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    The face of spice: A close-up look at the effects of Anchorage’s drug crisis

    by Rhonda McBride on Nov 02, 21:31

    Anchorage police believe they’ve pinpointed the rapid increase in the use of spice among the homeless to a specific time frame in July, when drug dealers began offering free samples. Gradually, police say, they began charging for the drug and slowly raising the price. Spice is a form of synthetic concoction, often laced with dangerous […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    Spice: Street drug continues to plague Anchorage homeless

    by Rhonda McBride on Oct 30, 20:52

    For the month of October, more than 20 percent of Anchorage calls for emergency medical services were related to spice, a synthetic form of marijuana laced with chemicals that make it much more potent than pot. The fire department logged more than 350 calls this month. Most of those came from Bean’s Café and Brother […]

  • Alaska News

    Alaska Native Heritage Center hosts circumpolar music festival

    by Rhonda McBride on Oct 02, 21:37

    Two Inuit throat singers from Ottawa stood facing each other on the stage at the Alaska Native Heritage Center on Friday afternoon, preparing for their performance Saturday as part of the 2015 Circumpolar World Music Celebration. To the uninitiated, the sounds are exotic — rhythmic breaths, grunts and moans, primitive yet sophisticated. Kathy Kettler and […]

  • Alaska News

    Helping the homeless: ‘Forget Me Not’ movement gains momentum in Alaska

    by Rhonda McBride on Sep 11, 21:02

    When Samuel Johns created a Facebook page in June to help the homeless, he had no idea it would take on a life of its own. Today, it’s approaching 9,000 members. Johns is an Alaska Native rap artist who uses music and social media to raise awareness about the homeless. The page, called “Forget Me […]

  • Alaska News

    Bristol Bay community uses river currents to generate power

    by Rhonda McBride on Sep 04, 21:32

    It was a big week for Igiugig. U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry gave a shout out to the Bristol Bay community for its innovative renewable energy project, dubbed the “RivGen” power system. Igiugig, in partnership with the Ocean Renewable Power Company, has been testing a system which uses currents from the fast-moving Kvichak River […]

  • Obama in Alaska

    Presidential visits to Alaska: Memorable, if not quirky

    by Rhonda McBride on Aug 28, 21:55

    With all the buildup to President Barack Obama’s visit to the 49th state next week, it’s worth a look back at past presidential visits. They’re far and few between. Usually, Alaska is not the destination but rather a refueling stop for Air Force One. What’s significant about this trip is the length of stay. Obama […]

  • Alaska News

    Anti-setnet initiative spurs protests

    by Rhonda McBride on Aug 21, 23:13

    As next Wednesday’s Alaska Supreme Court hearing on an initiative banning commercial setnet fishing in Cook Inlet approaches, tensions grow on the Kenai Peninsula. The Kenai Fisherman’s Association organized two protests this week. Many of those who took part carried signs expressing their opposition to the setnet initiative. But Dave Athons, the retired fisheries biologist […]

  • Alaska News

    Kenai River king run appears poised for a turnaround

    by Rhonda McBride on Aug 21, 21:23

    Based on preliminary numbers, state fishery managers are hopeful the Kenai River king salmon run is finally making a comeback. Escapement — the number of fish that return to their spawning grounds to reproduce — is much stronger than it has been in the past two years. The Department of Fish and Game’s minimum goal […]