Solstice Marks First Day of Summer
ANCHORAGE - On summer solstice, the longest day of the year and the official beginning of summer, Alaskans had mixed feelings about the 19-plus hours of daylight.
On Flattop Mountain, visitors from Arizona, California and Tennessee said they were taking advantage of the light. According to the U.S. Naval Observatory, sunset would begin at 11:42 p.m., and many hikers said it gave them plenty of time to soak up the sunshine.
But Tia Buitrago, who runs a hot dog cart Downtown, said solstice is bittersweet.
“It’s the saddest day of the year!” she said, flipping hotdogs from behind the counter of her downtown gourmet sausage stand. “It starts going downhill now: I don’t like it.”
Buitrago said hotdogs and sunshine go together like peanut butter and jelly, and when the days become shorter, the customers became fewer and further between. While she was preparing for a massive influx of customers during Saturday’s Downtown summer solstice festival, after that, she said it was a matter of waiting for winter solstice to come and signal the swing back towards summer.
“This day came too fast,” Buitrago said.