Episode 99: Zuill Bailey — Serenading Alaska
From time to time, we repeat some of our popular episodes of Frontiers. This Sunday, we brought back a program we aired last fall, featuring Zuill Bailey, a nationally known cellist, who comes to Alaska frequently as part of his role as artistic director of the Sitka Summer Music Festival. Since our program aired, […]
Episode 98: Iditarod of yesteryear – Breaking trail
This week on Frontiers, we focus on the Iditarod dogs themselves, because they really are the stars of the show.
Episode 97: Iditarod 2017 – Ready, set, go!
We hope this week’s show gives you an appreciation of some of the decisions that have to be made over the course of a thousand miles to Nome.
Episode 96: Bethel High School Shooting – 20 Years Later
It was a day when ordinary people were called upon to do extraordinary things and continue to live with memories that still evoke pain and sadness. And yet, the town of Bethel has been remarkably resilient. Many went on to do good things to erase the evil of that day. Their stories are inspiring.
Episode 95: Blindsided by Heroin
The Southwest Alaska community of Quinhagak would seem to be the last place on earth you’d find heroin. The Yup’ik village of roughly 700 people still subsists on wild foods – caribou and moose from the Kilbuck Mountains and salmon from the Arolik and Kanektok Rivers. But last August, there were four heroin overdoses […]
Episode 93: President Trump’s immigration order – Alaska reacts
Maybe one reason the order strikes such a nerve: Almost all Alaskans, not just immigrants, are newcomers to this state — except of course for Alaska Natives, who make up about 15 percent of the population.
Episode 92: Presidential politics — Alaska rides a wave of change
When you consider the federal government is Alaska’s largest landowner, it’s easy to understand why U.S. presidents have had such a big impact on our state.
Episode 91: Senate Bill 91 — What’s next for Alaska prisons?
Senate Bill 91 is based on a simple premise. Empty prisons. Save money. Put some of it back into programs to help inmates stay out of prison. Even so, there are a lot of moving pieces in this massive piece of legislation passed in 2016. In this episode of Frontiers, we look at some of […]
Episode 90: Russian Orthodox Christmas celebration revisited
When I first moved to Bethel in 1988, I was surprised to see the holiday decorations remain long after Christmas. “How strange,” I thought. “Maybe people enjoy them so much, they just don’t want to take them down.” Then one of my colleagues at KYUK, the public radio and TV station in Bethel, said she […]
Episode 89: Inside the oil patch — BlueCrest’s breakthrough
Normally when we talk about the oil industry in Alaska, we usually focus on the major producers – BP, ConocoPhillips and ExxonMobil. But in this week’s Frontiers we look at one of the “little guys” — BlueCrest Energy and its drill site near Anchor Point. BlueCrest is an independent oil company based in Fort […]
Episode 88: Living with Love in 2017
Dan Bigley’s life was changed forever when he was mauled and blinded by a bear. He and his wife Amber share their simple, yet powerful message for life.
Episode 87: Lullaby Project and beyond
I feel a connection with almost every episode of Frontiers, but this one has a special place in my heart.
Episode 85: Remembering Ted Stevens
There were many players in the historic 1971 Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act. One of those was the late Sen. Ted Stevens.
Episode 84: Revisiting life without ice
This spring, climate change researchers said we could reach a tipping point in Alaska weather.
Episode 83: Revisiting the Lullaby Project
This week, we bring back a popular show from this fall on the Lullaby Project, which aims to help women inmates build a bond with their children through music.
Episode 82: Holding the line on Alaska crime
This week on Frontiers, we look at some of the numbers — from homicides to police staffing, as well as the increasingly violent nature of street crime and what the city plans to do to combat it.
Episode 81: Alaska Inuit Circumpolar Council education conference shares language and culture as medicine
The Alaska Native movement to incorporate indigenous language and culture has been decades in the making — enough to see some of the early efforts of educators bear fruit.
Episode 80: Decision 2016 – What’s at stake for Alaska?
With so much up in the air, we thought we’d take one last wild ride on the political roller coaster.
Episode 79: New Directions for Alaska Education
Facing challenges unique to our history, geography and diverse cultures, Alaskans are helping our children navigate in education’s unchartered territories.
Episode 78: Alaska, where politics is personal
As we head into the final stretch of the 2016 election season, we thought we’d take some time out on Frontiers to explore the nature of politics in Alaska. Our size — geographically — is huge, but our politics involves a relatively small circle of people. A place where every vote truly counts, where […]
Episode 77: AFN – 50 years of change
This week on Frontiers, we turn the clock back to October 1966 – the year the Alaska Federation of Natives formed. In the confines of a half-hour program, it’s hard to do this David and Goliath story justice, but we hope to give our viewers an appreciation of how some of Alaska’s most economically disadvantaged […]
Episode 76: Ouzinkie’s Recipe for Success
Every time we travel to a Rural community, no matter how tough the circumstances, there is always something to inspire me, to make me smile. Usually, it’s the kids — so full of energy, so curious about our camera gear, so determined to become a part of our story. They definitely were a big […]
Episode 75: Bridging the Divide
This week we take you to Aleknagik, a Bristol Bay community less than a 20-mile drive from Dillingham. Aleknagik is the gateway to the Wood-Tikchik State Park and to some of the most beautiful scenery in Alaska. The waters are so clear, you can see the salmon swim – and whether it rains, shines or […]
Episode 74: Crystal Serenity’s Historic Voyage
When the Crystal Serenity pulled into New York Harbor on Sept. 16 in the early morning light, it signaled the dawn of a new age for the Arctic.
Episode 73: Zuill Bailey, Serenading Alaska
Zuill Bailey and his cello, which he describes as his soulmate, have serenaded Alaska off and on over the last 10 years. Now, he says, the state has begun to feel more like home — because he spends about four months a year here to promote classical music. This week on Frontiers, we take time […]
Episode 72: The Lullaby Project and its Messages of Love
The Lullaby Project at the Hiland Mountain Correctional Center is yet another project that seeks to put to use the untapped potential of music.
Episode 71: Best of Summer
I won’t be offended if most of you Frontiers viewers are out in the country hunting, fishing or camping this Labor Day weekend, or enjoying the Alaska State Fair. This is the time of year we say our goodbyes to summer. And what a summer it’s been. We picked a few of our favorite KTVA […]
Episode 70: Journey to Monk’s Lagoon
This week on Frontiers, we visit Monk’s Lagoon and look at some of its fascinating history.
Episode 69: Alaska State Fair – Family, Farms and Fun
The Alaska State Fair is the rite of autumn for many Alaskans who trek to Palmer to see everything from giant cabbages to monster trucks and baby pigs. This week on Frontiers, just before the state fair gets underway in Palmer on Thursday, we look back on its 80-year history. Some of the highlights: KTVA’s […]
Episode 68: Changing of the Guard
We go beyond the sound bites, especially when it comes to politics.
Episode 67: Discovering Alaska
In a few months, we’ll find out whether the “Summer of 2016” lived up to predictions that it would be a banner tourism year.
Episode 66: The Uncovered History of Alaska’s Attu Island
The story of Japanese invasion of Attu, a seldom told part of Alaska’s history.
Episode 65: Alaska’s Field of Dreams
On Frontiers this week, we take a look at the budding peony industry and the future of agriculture in Alaska.
Episode 64: Alaska Tourism — Room to Grow
Alaska’s tourism industry experts say it appears we’re on track for another banner year. They also say the seeds for this year’s success were planted in advertising dollars spent several years ago. Their message: success doesn’t happen overnight. Alaska has also had a boost from TV reality shows. Although the content is not always authentic, […]
Episode 63: Return of the Kings
The Alaska passion for salmon is almost primal, perhaps more so in Alaska Native communities where they’ve been a main part of the diet for time immemorial. In recent years, when king salmon returned in record low numbers on the Kuskokwim River, state and federal fishery managers responded with some of the harshest restrictions ever […]
Episode 62: Mount Marathon, Equal Footing
A preview of the 2016 Mount Marathon Race, where the women for the first time have equal footing with the men.
Episode 61: Unfinished Legislative Business
The stakes are some of the highest in state history.
Episode 60: Our Bond with Bears
Our relationship with bears is as old as the human race, but it’s a complicated one.
Episode 59: The Cost of Waiting
So far this legislative session, lawmakers have not yet come up with a long-range plan to pay for state government. They effectively delayed a permanent budget fix by drawing from the state’s main savings account, the Constitutional Budget Reserve, to cover most of this year’s $4-billion budget gap. Next year, though, there won’t be enough […]
Episode 58: Food for Thought
From above the Arctic Circle to Bristol Bay, there’s a growing interest in raising food closer to home. Some of it’s economic. In places like Anaktuvuk Pass, where produce must be flown in, a head of cabbage can cost you $12. For many, it’s about improving the quality of food. Others worry about Alaska’s food […]
Episode 57: Bears in Our Backyard
With humans and urban bears crossing paths more frequently this spring, we thought this Memorial Day weekend would be a good time to take a closer look at the bears in Anchorage’s backyard.
Episode 56: Help for the homeless
It’s one of Anchorage’s biggest challenges: finding meaningful ways to help the homeless. This week on Frontiers, we attempt to take a deep dive into the issue.
Episode 55: Life Without Ice – The New Norm?
This week on Frontiers, we look at what climate change researchers say could be a tipping point in Alaska weather — one of the warmest winters in at least a century. They also say we could be on our way to a record year of temperatures, well above the historic norm. Some of the highlights […]
Episode 54: Best of Frontiers
We took time out this week to celebrate one year of bringing you Frontiers. It’s hard to believe we’ve reached this milestone, because the year has gone by so quickly. Frontiers is a huge canvas to work upon. From stories about climate change and saving Native languages to the state’s $4 billion dollar budget gap, […]
Episode 53: Alaska’s economic crystal ball
This week on Frontiers, we peer into Alaska’s economic crystal ball. Literally.
Episode 52: Pipeline to Success
In this Frontiers program, we take a look at another kind of pipeline — one for academic success, in which students from small, isolated communities can get credentials from the Rural Human Services program, headquartered at the University of Alaska Fairbanks.
Episode 51: Discussing Byron Mallott’s journey
Follow-up to our profile on Lieutenant Governor Byron Mallott
Episode 50: Shattering the Silence
In this week’s program, we cross into a frontier that takes courage and determination to tackle: facing up to Alaska’s high rate of child sexual abuse, which the University of Alaska Anchorage Justice Center says is six times the national average. Some of the highlights of this week’s show: A behind-the scenes look at “Stalking […]
Episode 49: John Sturgeon’s turf war continues
Although the U.S. Supreme Court ruled on John Sturgeon’s case against the National Park Service, his battle is far from over.
Episode 48: Alaska’s fiscal cliff
This week on Frontiers, we stare down Alaska’s fiscal cliff, to see what it’ll take to pull the state back from the brink.
Episode 47: Alaska adventures, chasing lights and racing dogs
Our theme this week is adventure, Alaska style.
Episode 46: A new chapter for Justin and Jaimee High
Highlights from this week’s program: · One mushing family’s incredible journey of recovery after last summer’s devastating Sockeye wildfire. · It’s not only the flames you should fear in a wildfire. Two fire safety experts look ahead to this year’s fire season, which is already off to an early start. · Heather Hintze takes us […]
Episode 45: Jon Van Zyle’s Iditarod Legacy
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.
Episode 44: Comeback Trail
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.
Episode 43: Behind the Name ‘Eskimo’
The frontiers of language and culture are always changing. Words take on new meanings all the time.
Episode 42: Finding love in Nome
We hope you enjoy our special Valentine’s Day edition of Frontiers. We found lots to love about Nome and are sure you will, too.
Episode 41: Alaska Schools on the Edge
To close or not to close… That is a big question for children in small, struggling schools across the state. Although no bill has been introduced yet, a proposal from Rep. Lynn Gattis to raise the minimum enrollment for schools has generated a lot of controversy at the State Capitol. Currently a school must have […]
Episode 40: Alaska Turf Wars
Alaskans, as a group, believe that we’re different. And we are.
Episode 39: High stakes session
Unprecedented. Historic. Tough. Somber. Scary — Those are some of the words Alaska lawmakers have used to describe the job ahead for 2016 Legislature. With back-to-back multi-billion-dollar deficits, lawmakers not only have some difficult choices ahead but are also pushing into unchartered fiscal territory. Finance experts say they cannot balance the budget with cuts alone […]
Episode 38: Follow-up Frontiers – Kenai Fish Wars
Last summer, we went to the shores of Cook Inlet on the Kenai Peninsula to look at the debate over an initiative — spearheaded by the Alaska Fisheries Conservation Alliance, a group with a board made up of longtime sport fishing advocates.
Episode 37: Frontiers of Faith, Russian Orthodox Christmas
While Dec. 25 is the day most Alaskans celebrate Christ’s birthday, Jan. 7 is the day for the Russian Orthodox, who use the Julian calendar instead of the Gregorian. Jan. 7 is also the start of a week of festivities.
Episode 36: Reinventing the Alaska National Guard
While the Alaska National Guard took a beating in the 2014 elections, investigations later showed the erosion of its leadership culture and footprint in rural Alaska had already been well underway. On Frontiers this week, we explore plans to reverse that process. Our guest is Brigadier General Laurie Hummel, the first female commander of […]
Episode 35: Best of Frontiers, preserving Native languages & culture
When KTVA launched Frontiers in May of this year, our vision was to bring you the faces and places of Alaska, as well as the hopes and dreams of Alaskans. We knew we would never run out of Frontiers to explore — that each show would tackle not only the challenges our state faces, but […]
Episode 34: Follow-up on Alaska’s ‘Forget-Me-Not’ movement
Earlier this year, we reported on a Facebook movement which started with just one guy and his cell phone camera. Samuel Johns — an Alaska Native rapper, sobriety activist and homeless advocate — had no idea his Facebook page would mushroom to over 15,000 members in less than six months. His vision: to engage Alaskans […]
Episode 33: Frontiers follow-up, wood bison adapt to new home
Earlier this year on Frontiers, we followed the journey of about 100 wood bison, which were raised at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage, then flown to their new home near Shageluk, a community about 300 miles west of Anchorage. The wood bison are cousins to the iconic plains bison, but bigger. In fact, […]
Episode 32: Weighing in on Gov. Walker’s 1st year
Dec. 1 marked one year since Gov. Bill Walker put his hand on a family Bible that’s hundreds of years old and took the oath of office. Also on that day, Walker — a Republican-turned-Independent — and his lieutenant governor, Byron Mallott — a Democrat — launched an unprecedented bi-partisan administration. On Frontiers this week, […]
Episode 31: Against the odds
For most people, when asked about homelessness in Anchorage, the mind’s eye goes to the faces on the street, or people holding up cardboard signs on street corners. Every one of them has a story. But about children in our schools? With the exception of their teachers and certain school staffers, they are almost an […]
Episode 30: Climate change, uncertain future
The impact of climate change on Alaska can be an overwhelming subject. But this week on Frontiers, we take a few bites out of it. KTVA anchor Emily Carlson and photojournalist Carolyn Hall spent a week in the Northwest Arctic community of Kivalina, where rapid erosion threatens its very existence. They heard about changes in […]
Episode 29: Ayaprun Elitnaurvik, a school goes on
In the 1990s, I worked at KYUK — the public radio and TV station in Bethel — where we did many stories about the push for a Yup’ik language immersion school, such as the Ayaprun Elitnaurvik School, which was recently destroyed in a fire. Some argued that while the Yup’ik language was strong in the […]
Episode 28: Messages of Hope
Whenever you take up the subject of suicide, it isn’t easy to strike a balance between addressing the trauma while also remaining hopeful. For decades, Alaskans have asked themselves why our suicide rate is so high compared to the rest of the nation — and the more important question: What can we do about it? […]
Episode 27: Spice Roulette
“Spice Roulette” is a dangerous game for both Anchorage’s homeless and the city itself. On Tuesday of this week, photojournalist Emily Landeen and I witnessed a spice meltdown outside Bean’s Café, where the homeless congregate for meals and temporary comfort from the outdoors. We were asking the clients to share their insights on the toll […]
Episode 26: Governors and gas lines
Almost immediately after the Trans-Alaska Pipeline was built, governors began talking about building a natural gas line.
Episode 25: Rising up from the Ashes
This week, we follow up on the disaster and look the Willow Recovery Project’s work.
Episode 24: AFN, Alaska’s Largest Gathering
This year’s Alaska Federation of Natives Convention (AFN) is expected to set new records for attendance.
Episode 23: Fishing on the Yukon
This program is about fishing, but it’s also about determination – an exploration of one of the most challenging economic frontiers in Alaska.
Episode 22: Alaska’s Fiscal Frontiers
I have a fascination about things created in garages. Think Steve Jobs, who started the Apple computer empire in the family garage. And where did that term “garage band” come from? On Frontiers this week, we check out a project that was born in an East Anchorage garage — the brainchild of Gunnar Knapp, who […]
Episode 21: What will you do with your PFD?
Editor’s note: We received a call from a viewer regarding the story in this episode about a duck hunt in Bethel claiming it is illegal to shoot waterfowl from a moving boat. We did some research and discovered it is against state regulations to shoot waterfowl from a motorized, moving boat. The state of Alaska’s […]
Episode 20: ‘Forget me not’ movement puts a face on the homeless
It’s hard to believe this is our 20th episode of Frontiers. As we’ve always said, since the very first program, Frontiers is about bringing you the faces and places of Alaska, but also the voices. We had the privilege of spending time with Samuel Johns, an Alaska Native rap artist, who has used his music to […]
Episode 19: Power of Ideas
As we look at various renewable energy systems across the state, we hope this week’s Frontiers program speaks to the inner geek in everyone. It’s always exciting to see new technology applied in creative ways. When it comes to meeting Alaska’s energy needs, there are no cookie-cutter approaches. One of the highlights of this week’s […]
Episode 18: The President’s Visit
The upcoming visit of President Barack Obama is a story that’s hard to get your arms around. The information released early on has been intentionally vague, but we’re told that’s typical of presidential visits. But what’s not typical is the historic nature of the president’s journey to Alaska. He’ll be the first president to venture […]
Episode 17: Kenai Fish Wars
The economic, political and scientific issues that are a part of a swirling debate.
Episode 16: When words return
Before radio, TV and movies — there was only the story, words that returned from the past and lived on into the future.
Episode 15: Seldovia, the town that time forgot
This week on Frontiers, the spotlight is on Seldovia, a tiny town about 45 minutes from Homer. Years ago, Seldovia was the hub of the Cook Inlet fishing industry. But after the 1964 earthquake, the town had to reinvent itself. It’s been a slow process that continues today as the town works hard to promote tourism […]
Episode 14: Renewable Alaska
When it comes to renewable energy, Alaska is wide-open frontier. The state has been described a giant laboratory for all kinds of energy: hydropower, wind, geothermal, solar, biomass and tides. This week on Frontiers, the focus is on Kodiak, one of the leaders in the nation when it comes to utilizing both wind and hydropower […]
Episode 13: Gov. Bill Walker’s Frontier
This week on Frontiers, we look at the challenges Gov. Bill Walker has faced thus far, as well as those that lie ahead.
Episode 12: Downsizing Alaska’s military
The military has had a huge footprint on Alaska’s frontier story — and this week on Frontiers, we will retrace those steps.
Episode 11: New Leadership
As Anchorage celebrates its 100th birthday, a new mayor takes the reins — Ethan Berkowitz.
Episode 10: Dancing with the Mountain
Veteran Mount Marathon runner Clint McCool sums up the July 4 race in Seward as a “dance with the mountain.”
Episode 9: Anchorage, Old and New
If you’re a history buff, you’ll love this week’s Frontiers. As Anchorage celebrates its 100th birthday, we travel back in time. Although the city is relatively young, much of its history would come as a surprise to many who call Anchorage home. KTVA’s veteran reporter Lauren Maxwell takes us to a neighborhood near Fairview, which was […]
Episode 8: Heartache and Hope from the Wildfire Front Lines
It’s been a week of heartache and hope on the front lines of two wildfires burning in Southcentral Alaska — and the summer fire season has only just begun.
Episode 7: Grassroots Healing
Although we’ve fought against high rates of alcohol and drug addiction in our state for a long time, the search for sobriety remains largely an unexplored frontier, especially for many Alaska Native communities.
Episode 6: Focus on Fish
Whether you catch it or eat it, fishing is something almost every Alaskan can relate to.
Episode 5: Erin’s Law
This week, Frontiers looks at how legislation aimed at protecting children has turned into a political football. The show follows the bill’s twists and turns during the 90-day session and the special session in Anchorage.
Episode 4: Lasting Legacies
This week’s episode takes an in-depth look at the lives of two men who pushed into new frontiers in two very different arenas.
Episode 3: Bison and Bears
Lions, tigers, bison and bears. OK, no lions and tigers, but if you love wildlife, you’ll enjoy this episode of Frontiers.
Episode 2: Saving Native Languages
Only one generation ago, teachers tried to shame Alaska Native children into silence. Today, elders are helping to mend the tattered tapestry of Alaska Native languages.
Episode 1: Byron Mallott Profile
Byron Mallott: A profile of Alaska’s “Philosopher in Chief”