The Hiland Mountain Correctional Center is near Eagle River, Alaska. The beauty of the scenery clashes with the trappings of the prison for a disturbing juxtaposition.
Like most prisons, you can find a lot of interesting tattoos at Hiland.
Hiland Mountain is not your typical prison. It has many innovative programs. Many inmates care for dogs that will become service dogs for the blind.
Tamara Riley works in the greenhouse. She is serving a 99-year sentence for being an accomplice to murder.
Tamara Riley with her supervisor, Cindy Galvan, another inmate who is serving a long sentence. Tamara and Cindy play in the orchestra together.
Emerald lives in the greenhouse. Her job is to catch shrews and mice.
Now you know where Emerald gets her name. Most inmates call her "Emmy."
Tamara Riley will be on parole in three years.
Tamara Riley is the only original member of the women's string orchestra. She is preparing for her 10th holiday concert.
Tamara Riley is working on Bach's Gavotte, which she will play as a solo.
The Hiland prison orchestra is the only one of its kind in the nation.
The orchestra is a chance for inmates to transform themselves into musicians.
The "prisoner" identity is hard to escape.
Most of the inmates arrive early for their orchestra classes on Saturday. They look forward to making music.
Cheysser Miller has played violin with the orchestra for five years.
Despite prison life, women still find ways to be feminine.
Holly Charlie is the only viola player in the advanced orchestra.
Miricle Girten bows with strength and a sureness.
Miricle Girten is a rock-solid bass player.
Joy Sharpe adds some viola power to the orchestra. She teaches a chamber music class at the prison on Friday.
Richard Kurtz is a volunteer. He's performed at three holiday concerts.
Tisha Negus takes her music seriously.
Tamara Riley says music helps her channel her frustrations.
Shannon Mead has been at Hiland for five years. She'll be out next year.
Gabrielle Whitfield has been the artistic director for the Hiland orchestra for nine years.
Sgt. Mike Dingman says he wishes there could be an orchestra for Alaska's male prison population.
The highpoint for the many orchestra members was during the 2012 Holliday Concert, in which renowned cellist Zuill Bailey performed with the orchestra.
North Pole sues over oil refinery contamination
by Associated Press on Nov 27, 12:10
The city of North Pole is suing two recent owners of an oil refinery over groundwater pollution. The lawsuit blames current refinery owner Flint Hills Alaska Resources and previous owner Williams Alaska Petroleum for releasing hazardous substances into the groundwater beneath the refinery. Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (http://ow.ly/F03JX) reports the lawsuit filed Wednesday identifies sulfolane as […]
Lights go out in Talkeetna after wanted man strikes a power pole
by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 27, 11:35
Some Talkeetna residents might be celebrating part of their Thanksgiving holiday in the dark after an impaired 20-year-old driver with a warrant crashed into a power pole Thursday morning. According to an online dispatch from Alaska State Troopers, Jacob M. Nordman drove his 1989 Ford F150 pickup truck into the pole at the railroad crossing […]
Anchorage Assembly passes $472M budget for 2015
by Emily Carlson on Nov 27, 9:27
The Anchorage Assembly passed the municipality’s 2015 budget Wednesday afternoon, but not before some debate on whether to cut additional staff and a surprise tennis court proposal. The $472 million budget passed unanimously in a two-hour special meeting. It’s a little more than $2 million over what Mayor Dan Sullivan proposed in October. The mayor […]
Thanksgiving travel tales from the Anchorage airport
by Kate McPherson on Nov 27, 8:02
Spending Thanksgiving with loved ones isn’t possible for everyone. But for others, taking a flight or two is all it takes to get the family together. At the Ted Stevens Anchorage International Airport on Wednesday night, 2-year-old Rachael waited patiently for her dad to come home from the North Slope. Her mom, Melissa Chapman, is happy that […]
UAA nearly holds the Tigers
by Dave Goldman on Nov 27, 7:56
The game counted as an exhibition for UAA, and the Seawolves nearly made the Pacific Tigers exhibit A. In a tightly contested game from wire to wire, Division II UAA nearly upended the bigger Pacific Tigers. But Division I got the last word in the balance of the rebounds in a hard-earned 71-62 win at the […]
UCSB’s John Green bounces back
by Jake Edmonds on Nov 27, 7:22
Most of the teams traveled quite the distance to play in the Great Alaska Shootout at the Alaska Airlines Center. But for one UC Santa Barbara player, getting there has been measured in more than miles. It’s hard to miss his florescent blue and yellow shoes. Add 13.3 points and 3.7 rebounds per game this season […]
Judge issues max sentence to Palmer man for sexually exploiting children
by KTVA CBS 11 News on Nov 27, 6:56
A 49-year-old Palmer man was sentenced in federal court Tuesday for sexually exploiting children more than a decade ago. A federal judge sentenced Robert Cunningham on six counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, using two children to produce child pornography, according to a release from the Alaska U.S. Attorney’s Office. Cunningham’s crimes occured between September 2002 […]
Not this time: UAA women fall in title game
by Dave Goldman on Nov 27, 6:11
Despite 19 points from Megan Mullings and a spirited effort, UAA fell to Long Beach State 69-60 in the title game of the GCI Great Alaska Shootout at the Alaska Airlines Center. Mullings was named the tournament’s Most Outstanding Player. The Seawolves were aiming for back-to back wins over Division I teams following their victory […]