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Sierra Starks

Stories by Sierra Starks

  • DayBreak

    Young Alaskan blazing the trail for diversity in the great outdoors

    by Sierra Starks on Aug 25, 14:02

    A short climb from Rendezvous Peak, where the trail plateaus into ridgeline, 21-year-old Reth Duir’s reaction to Arctic Valley’s mountainous views is one of awe. “I feel like I’m on top of the world,” Duir says, gazing at the town of Eagle River below. It’s his first hike up the Rendezvous Peak Trail, which is […]

  • Alaska News

    #FirstSevenJobs hashtag began as Alaska musician’s cure to writer’s block

    by Sierra Starks on Aug 12, 9:21

    Be it baby-sitting or launching a lemonade stand on the corner, landing a first job is perhaps something all humans have in common. Or at least that’s what Marian Call was hoping when she tweeted the question, “What were your first 7 jobs?” What were your first 7 jobs? Babysitting, janitorial, slinging coffee, yard work, […]

  • Alaska News

    Alaska midwives fear for their future after state proposes licensing fee increase

    by Sierra Starks on Aug 10, 11:20

    Kyleigh Webb knows the pains of labor pretty well. Three years ago, she felt those pains for the fourth time on the top floor of Heritage Birth Center in downtown Anchorage, while her friends and family celebrated downstairs with a Moose’s Tooth pizza party. Webb delivered her youngest son, Halston, in the comfort of a home […]

  • Harvesting Alaska

    Harvesting Alaska: From farm to fiber art in Mat-Su Valley

    by Sierra Starks on Aug 01, 13:48

    Every day, Michelle Olsen comes home to the soothing sound of bleating sheep. “This is my therapy,” Olsen said of her wooly companions. “When I come home from work, I come out here and I play with my babies and just love them.” Olsen’s Palmer farm is one of many in the Mat-Su Valley contributing […]

  • Alaska News

    A new way to measure quality of early child care programs in Alaska

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 26, 8:12

    Choosing the right fit when it comes to early child care just got easier for parents in Alaska. The state now has a way to measure the quality of early child care and learning programs, called Learn and Grow. Child care centers and programs who sign up are evaluated on numerous standards, like health and safety, […]

  • DayBreak

    Fashion Friday: Stock up & save at Nordstrom Anniversary Sale in Anchorage

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 22, 14:40

    The much-anticipated Nordstrom anniversary sale begins Friday, July 22. Shoppers can anticipate major discounts through the sale’s end on Aug. 8, says Kari Skinner with Anchorage 5th Avenue Mall. The Nordstrom Anniversary Sale will offer more than just marked-down merchandise from last season; there’s also new merchandise up for grabs at a fraction of the price, Skinner […]

  • DayBreak

    Alaska child care experts call updated parental leave policies ‘smart business’

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 20, 8:38

    The squeal of a happy baby is a sound almost as familiar as fingers typing on a computer keyboard at Thompson & Co. “There is no better stress reliever when you work in an agency life, where you have a lot of clients and a lot of stress, to be able to grab a baby […]

  • Money

    Report: Cost of groceries in rural Alaska double the national average

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 12, 16:27

    One week of groceries in Cordova is almost two times the national average, according to a new economic trends report released by the Department of Labor. The survey, conducted by the University of Alaska Fairbanks Cooperative Extension Service, includes about 20 communities around the state. Sandpoint, Alaska – a remote island community in the Aleutians — topped […]

  • DayBreak

    Alaska gamers say Pokémon Go has upped the playing experience

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 11, 10:48

    At any given moment there’s a battle brewing between Alaska gamers on their smartphones. The constant swipe-up motion and ferocious tapping on the screen are dead giveaways of playing Pokémon Go, says Branndon Thomas with 907 Gamers, a community of local game enthusiasts. Pokémon Go is a new take on the popular video game franchise. […]

  • Alaska News

    Alaska Wendy’s locations among 1,000 restaurants targeted by hackers

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 07, 13:25

    Wendy’s locations around Alaska were among the mass of the franchised U.S. restaurants where customers’ payment card data may have been stolen, according to a Thursday release from the company. This includes locations in Anchorage, Fairbanks, North Pole and Wasilla, all victims of a “malicious cyber activity” at the hands of “highly sophisticated, criminal cyberattacks,” […]

  • Alaska News

    Singing sisters return to Barrow to celebrate EP release with hometown

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 07, 8:08

    Singing sisters Jamie and Jennifer Christensen had to leave Alaska to pursue their music dreams. The two landed in Los Angeles in 2014, where they opened a commercial recording studio and began working on their debut extended play (EP), titled “Here We Come.” After spending months on the project, the pop duo released their EP […]

  • DayBreak

    Ask Alaska: Do you know the words to ‘The Star-Spangled Banner’?

    by Sierra Starks on Jul 04, 7:40

    Whether Alaskans’ Fourth of July plans call for watching fireworks, catching a baseball game or simply staying home to celebrate, they’re bound to hear America’s national anthem at least once. “The Star-Spangled Banner” is arguably one of the nation’s most recognizable ballads, but that doesn’t necessarily mean everyone knows all the words, as captured in […]

  • DayBreak

    Eagle River shop sees sweet start to ‘Row by Row’ quilting project

    by Sierra Starks on Jun 29, 8:14

    The phrase “Home Sweet Home” is posted in numerous places inside the Twisted Sisters’ Quilty Pleasures shop — hanging from the knob of a display cabinet, visible on the bathroom wall and printed on a laminated sign in the part of the shop dedicated to the Row by Row Experience. Row by Row, a shop-hop […]

  • DayBreak

    Outdoor fashion finds to weather long summer days in Alaska

    by Sierra Starks on Jun 24, 10:51

    Summer in Alaska means it’s time to get outdoors — and look good doing it. With 19 hours of daylight, packing in as many activities as possible is high on Alaskans’ list this season, says Kari Skinner with Anchorage 5th Avenue Mall. Fashion finds for this time of year include outfits that can be worn all […]

  • DayBreak

    Ask Alaska: What do Alaskans Google more than folks in the Lower 48?

    by Sierra Starks on Jun 20, 9:33

    For most, the Google search bar has become the go-to place for questions that need immediate answers. A recent Estately blog post laid out the most common questions Americans type into the Google search bar. Estately then ran those searches through Google Trends to break the queries down state-by-state. So, which search sets Alaska apart? What […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    From renters to squatters: Anchorage landlord battles unlawful tenants

    by Sierra Starks on Jun 17, 9:07

    A pile of full trash bags, a discarded vacuum and a baby high chair — all an eyesore on the porch of Kendra Kloster’s East Anchorage condominium. They’re remnants of the renters she says turned into squatters. Kloster has been leasing her old condo out for years after she purchased another home nearby. “I decided […]

  • DayBreak

    Ask Alaska (Men’s Edition): What’s in your closet?

    by Sierra Starks on Jun 08, 7:30

    Near the corner of Fourth Avenue and D Street, the former Killjoy Tasting Room has been transformed. In its place is Anchorage’s newest menswear shop, The Mercantile. Branding itself as a quality menswear and handmade goods store, The Mercantile has a pretty big vision — to take the staples and standards of Alaska’s menswear trends and update […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    Why potentially life-saving heart surgeries for babies aren’t an option in Alaska

    by Sierra Starks on Jun 03, 10:30

    As a mother of four children, Laura Stennett says seeing her kids hit their milestones is thrilling, to say the least. But for her baby Willow, those achievements are harder to come by. The 3-month-old’s most recent milestone is hitting 8 pounds. “She’s not even on the weight scale,” said Stennett. “She weighs about as much […]

  • Anchorage/Mat-Su

    Literacy & Longboarding: Anchorage teen starts project to bring awareness to dyslexia

    by Sierra Starks on May 31, 15:20

    From the top of the long, winding road of Potter Heights Drive, the view of Anchorage below is breathtaking. To get to the bottom of the hill, and onto the Seward Highway, some take their bikes; others drive their vehicles. But Casey Conner prefers to tackle the downhill on his longboard. Casey got hooked on […]

  • DayBreak

    Ask Alaska: How does fish-flavored baby food taste?

    by Sierra Starks on May 27, 8:18

    Fish-flavored baby food — one Anchorage mom says she has the formula. Bambino’s Baby Food, brainchild of Zoi Maroudas-Tziolas, boasts locally sourced ingredients and comes in several flavors but two stand out — Hali Halibut and Salmon Basket. Maroudas-Tziolas’ flavors are taste-test approved by her own daughter, Athina. Both salmon and halibut are favorites among Alaskans, but […]